Thursday, May 31, 2012

Somatopause and Aging

By Christopher Thomas

A decline in HGH levels 

Human growth hormone (HGH) is a key regulator of growth in our bodies, acting to build and maintain structures and tissues from our toes to our hair. As we age, not only do our reproductive functions decline, but growth also slows and eventually stops. The decline in growth hormone as we age is known as the somatopause.


Potential signs and symptoms of low HGH levels
  • Reduced vitality
  • Fatigue, lethargy, loss of stamina, strength or muscle bulk
  • Poor memory and concentration
  • Mood changes, emotional liability, anxiety and depression
  • Poor capacity to cope with stress
  • Poor libido and sexual performance
  • Sagging skin
  • Cool dry extremities
  • Sparseness of body hair
  • Reduced bone density (osteoporosis)
  • Weight gain (especially increased fat mass)

Benefits and risks of supplementing with HGH:

Potential Benefits
  • Performance enhancement – Improved resilience, mood, sleep, memories and body composition as well as our cognitive, cardiac and physical performance.
  • Lower rate of bone loss and improved muscle strength – Growth hormone is important for bone growth and turnover. For those with thin bones and low HGH levels, supplements can improve bone density and reduce the risk of fracture.
  • Improved mood and ability to cope with stress – Growth hormone regulates the balance between sympathetic and parasympathetic tone in our bodies. Reduced levels of HGH are associated with increased sympathetic nervous system activity, which in turn is linked with stress, depression and anxiety. Restoring human growth hormone levels has been shown to have a calming effect, engendering an improved sense of well being and reduced mental stress.
  • Small reduced risk of heart attacks and strokes – Heart disease and stroke are more common in those with low levels of HGH. Restoration of our healthy levels helps us to reduce ‘bad’ cholesterol levels, inflammation and tendencies to suffer from clotting, while improving other parameters such as our body (fat) composition and vascular function. Replacement of HGH may also reverse early changes in our arteries that lead to strokes.
  • Small reduced risk of cognitive decline and dementia
Potential Risks
  • Dose-related side effects are usually mild, but may include fluid retention, joint pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and dysregulation of sugar levels. These side-effects are minimized if dosing starts at low levels.
  • Standard doses of HGH are not linked with any increase in cancer risk – Nonetheless, HGH should not be taken without appropriate cancer screenings prior to starting treatment, nor is it suitable for those with a history or high risk of cancers (for instance, having a strong family history of cancers and/or being a smoker).

Options to combat the somatopause
  • Increase physical activity – join your local gym – the increase in HGH is greatest with anaerobic exercise, like weights or resistance training
  • Build stress resilience
  • Get quality sleep
  • Be aware of your symptoms  – do you have a troubling and persistent loss of stamina, strength or muscle bulk, fatigue, lethargy, low mood, poor memory, weight gain and reduced libido?
  • Make an appointment to see your doctor and get tested for low HGH levels if symptoms impact on your life



*This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.

To read more from Christopher Thomas please click here

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Dangers of Processed Foods

By Dr. N. Perricone

Recently the fast food industry has come under attack for some very unpleasant facts about what might be lurking in your hamburger. Most people simply take for granted that the meals and foods that they buy in restaurants, especially huge chains, or in the supermarkets is actually 'food.'

Merriam Webster dictionary defines food in the following manner:

1. Food : material consisting essentially of protein, carbohydrate, and fat used in the body of an organism to sustain growth, repair, and vital processes and to furnish energy; also : such material together with supplementary substances (as minerals, vitamins, and condiments)

2. Food: nutriment in solid form  Not to rain on anybody's parade, but I beg to differ. So much, in fact, too much 'food' isn't really wholesome nourishing 'food' at all. To the giant food purveyors, whether it be restaurants or grocers, it's all about shelf life. Fresh, life-sustaining foods are fragile.


They are not meant to sit on a shelf for unlimited times. Enter the world of processed foods. A simple definition is: foods that have been changed from their natural state. A boiled egg or steamed broccoli, therefore do fall under the category of 'processed food'. But for our purposes, we are talking about foods that have been chemically altered in an unhealthy and undesirable fashion.

When I was writing Ageless Face Ageless Mind I added a section on how to recognize food additives to avoid and I am reprinting it here to help readers know what to look for when shopping or dining out.

Food Additives to Avoid

Hidden Sugars - Sugar comes in many forms. Therefore it is very important to learn to recognize that there are many forms of sugar; in fact, the word "sugar" may or may not appear on the label at all. Look for: white sugar, cane sugar, brown sugar, confectioner's sugar, invert sugar, raw sugar, beet sugar, turbinado sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, dextrin, honey, maple, evaporated cane juice, malt, molasses, dextrose, fructose, sucrose, fruit juice concentrate, glucose, maltose.

Artificial coloring - synthetic food dyes are unnecessary and are either toxic or possible carcinogens, which mean that they may promote cancer.

Aspartame and all artificial sweeteners, including saccharin - these are dangerous excitotoxins with many negative effects.

BHT and BHA - used to preserve fats and oils. Studies indicate that they may be carcinogenic.

Brominated vegetable oil (BVO) - used in citrus flavored sodas and banned in more than 100 countries. It has been linked to damage in the major organ systems. Apparently the FDA does not require that it be listed on labels - so avoid any citrus flavored sodas (such as lemon or lime) as it is a good bet that BVO is included.

Carrageenan - stabilizer and thickening agent; found in everything from ice cream to yogurt. May be a carcinogen and is linked to toxic hazards, including ulcers and cancer; In addition to suppressing immune function, carrageenan causes intestinal ulcers and inflammatory bowel disease in animals and some research indicates that carrageenan is associated with causing cancer in humans.

Partially hydrogenated vegetable oils - these are the infamous trans fats directly linked to heart disease. The FDA published a paper stating that if people in the US stopped eating trans fat there would be 30,000 to 100,000 less deaths per year from CHD. Trans fats are also linked to breast and colon cancer, atherosclerosis, elevated cholesterol, depressed immune system, and allergies.

Nitrates - form powerful cancer-causing agents in stomach; are found in smoked foods such as deli foods, cured meats, bacon, hot dogs, pepperoni, sausage, etc.

MSG - A dangerous excitotoxin that may cause headaches, itching, nausea, nervous system and reproductive disorders, high blood pressure; pregnant, lactating mothers, infants, small children should avoid MSG; allergic reactions common; may be hidden in infant formula, low fat milk, candy, chewing gum, drinks, over-the-counter medications. Look for the following ingredients that contain MSG:
  • Monosodium Glutamate 
  • Calcium Caseinate 
  • Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein 
  • Sodium Caseinate 
  • Hydrolyzed Protein 
  • Yeast Extract 
  • Hydrolyzed Plant Protein 
  • Textured Protein (Including TVP) 
  • Plant Protein Extract 
  • Autolyzed Yeast 
  • Hydrolyzed Oat Flour 
  • Corn Oil

Neotame - related to aspartame, but allegedly more toxic.

Olestra - this fat substitute causes gastrointestinal distress.  Also lowers absorption of carotenoids, nutrients that lower our risk of cancer and other fat-soluble nutrients.

Potassium bromate - bromate causes cancer.  Potassium bromate is used in bread making.

Sulfites - can cause dangerous allergic reactions – often found in wine as well as salad bars. 

A final note 

I strongly recommend that you avoid all forms of soda, even so-called 'natural' sodas. Soda is dangerous for several reasons, including its sugar content or even worse, those sweetened with high fructose corn syrup. Almost every bottle or can of soda on the market is now made with high fructose corn syrup, which increases the appetite and promotes obesity to a far greater degree than cane sugar. A great many sodas also contain caramel coloring, and it is not just the obvious, such as colas and root beer. The bad news is that caramel coloring is actually burnt sugar, which is both carcinogenic and immuno-suppressive.  The FDA is aware of this and mandates that any food or beverage containing caramel coloring must list it on the product label. Unfortunately, most people are not aware of this darker side to a substance that sounds harmless but is in fact toxic. Sodas can also contain sodium benzoate - a popular preservative that can react with ascorbic acid to form the cancer-causing chemical benzene.





To find healthy and delicious alternatives to processed foods, visit the Perricone MD anti-inflammatory diets page.

*This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Natural Cure for Hemorrhoids

It is estimated that hemorrhoids affect millions of people all over the world. This condition may be very painful and sufferers have many options of relieve. Natural cures are usually preferred to surgery.


There are various natural cures for hemorrhoids. Often nature cures what even science cannot think of. Natural cure for hemorrhoids provide gradual relief from hemorrhoid pain. With natural cure for hemorrhoids there is no more the need for dietary supplements for the rest of your life. And he fear and pain of surgery can be avoided in most cases.

How do the natural cures for hemorrhoids work?

A good cure should improve the vascular circulation and strengthen vein tone to prevent future internal or external hemorrhoids. It should naturally treat the underlying root causes of hemorrhoids. It should help relieve the symptoms of hemorrhoids like burning, itching, and anal discomfort. Some plants extracts, which aid the natural cure for hemorrhoids. They help normalize the permeability of veins and capillaries and strengthen vein walls. They provide necessary nutrients to maintain optimal vein health.
  • Japanese Pagoda Tree - This tree extract is one of the best herbal supplement for naturally treating hemorrhoids. Clinical studies prove that this herbal extract successfully eliminated the hemorrhoids symptoms with a great success rate.
  • Horse chestnut -  This extract is said to have the ability to support vascular circulation, as well as strengthen connective tissues and vein tone.
  • Butcher's broom - It acts as a natural vasoconstrictor with anti-inflammatory properties and has the ability to strengthen and tone veins.
Astringent herbs or extracts applied directly on the affected area help tighten and tone loose tissue, stop bleeding and help promote a soothing and cooling effect on contact. These herbs are also known to help strengthen blood vessels and keep varicose veins in check. They are found in pharmacies in products with herbal hemorrhoids compounds.

Natural cure for hemorrhoids works best with following with preventive measures:
  • Apply ice packs on the affected areas.
  • Sitz bath, which is a small tub and is specially designed to allow the soaking of hemorrhoids without taking a bath. In this process the rectal area is soaked in hot water for 15-20 minutes about 3-4 times a day. Not only does this helps relieve symptoms but also aids shrinkage of the hemorrhoids.
  • Buy a doughnut shaped cushion. They are available in pharmacies and medical supply stores and can be useful to hemorrhoid sufferers. Try and sit on it as instructed.
  • Try and practice healthy bowel habits. Avoid straining your self while passing stool. Don't hold your breathe will on the bowel. Get off the toilet as you are finished.
  • Drink lots of water as it smooths out your stool passage.
  • Eating fresh fruits, vegetables and fibrous food items. Avoid spicy food, chocolates, soda, etc. They will just make things worse.
Article courtesy of Venapro website


*This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Dying To Look Good?

The Disturbing Truth About What's Really in Your Cosmetics, Toiletries and Personal Care Products

By Christine Farlow, D.C.

"When scientists sampled Andrea Martin's blood and urine to see what toxins she'd picked up from the world around her, she got a surprise. 'I had 95 chemical contaminants in my little body. And it was very mind blowing,' said Martin. The test results indicate that we all pick up tiny amounts of an astounding number of chemicals that are known to be dangerous in larger doses. Martin and eight others were tested by Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York and an advocacy organization called the Environmental Working Group. On average, the nine participants had traces of 53 chemicals known to cause cancer in human or animal tests. In addition, they had an average of 62 chemicals toxic to the brain or nervous system, plus 55 associated with birth defects."


There are toxic chemicals in almost every shampoo, conditioner, hairspray, styling gel, hair dye and perm. There are chemicals in our soaps, lotions, deodorants, perfumes, shaving creams and aftershaves. We use toothpaste and mouthwashes filled with chemicals and dyes. We take our clothes to the “dry” cleaners where they are immersed in a poisonous chlorine-based solvent called percholoroethylene or “perc”, which is carcinogenic and linked to chronic kidney, liver and gastrointestinal problems and reproductive disorders.

Toxic chemicals in personal-care products don’t just stay on our skin and in our hair. They literally get stuck in our bodies- in our tissues, our fat cells, our organs and in our brains. Have you noticed the latest craze in pharmaceuticals? The patch. There’s an epidermal patch for everything, from quitting smoking to birth control. Patches work as a delivery system because 60 % to 80% of what comes in contact with your skin enters your bloodstream and will circulate throughout your body within one minute. The more dilute the chemical the more available it is. Three researchers with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Quality Engineering in Boston concluded that greater amounts of chemical toxins could be delivered through bathing, due to skin absorption, than if they had actually been taken by mouth. Many people don’t think about their skin being absorbent - if we did, we would never put anything on our skin that we didn’t consider safe enough to eat! The reality is, we are "ingesting" our shampoos, conditioners, toothpastes, mouthwashes, deodorants and body lotions. If everything we put on our skin, on our hair and in our mouths is going into our bloodstream, wouldn’t it be a good idea to use products that aren't laden with toxic chemicals?

Believe it or not, finding personal care products that aren't toxic is even harder than finding uncontaminated food. "Over 800 neurotoxic chemical compounds are used in the cosmetic and perfume industries." ("Rub A Dub Dub ...Is Cancer in Your Tub?" 1999) The FDA doesn’t regulate cosmetics nearly as stringently as it regulates drugs. The agency spends only 1 percent of its overall budget on investigating cosmetics. Many shampoos, toothpastes and cosmetics with labels that read "herbal" and "natural" are also loaded with toxic chemicals.

What you need to know about "natural" personal care products 

"There is no legal definition for 'natural', and a chemist's definition of organic simply requires that the molecule contain carbon. This means in simple terms that there are no legal guidelines and boundaries for manufacturers, controlling the substance of their 'all-natural' claims. Thus, it is all in the wordplay and so-called 'natural' cosmetics can still contain potentially harmful or irritant chemicals preservatives, cheap, chemically derived aesthetic and texture enhancing additives, chemically derived sudsing agents, artificial colorants and fragrances. The proof is in the labeling. Most people tend to think that a shampoo bottle, whether sold in a health food store or not, which costs four times as much as a regular shampoo, with pictures of flowers and the labels "all-natural" and "herbal extracts" in an attractive, earth-tonish, environmentally friendly bottle, is a safe and healthy choice for washing hair. Well, one need only read the ingredients of the "natural" shampoo and compare it to any conventional brand sold in every drugstore." (www.uncleharry's.com/infobase)

The Most UN Wanted List
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Mineral oil
  • Polyethylene glycol
  • Propylene glycol
  • Sodium lauryl and laureth sulfate
  • Chlorine
  • DEA -diethanolamine
  • MEA - monoethanolamine } a class of chemicals known as alkanolamines
  • TEA - triethanolamine
  • FD&C dyes
  • Artificial fragrances
  • Imidazolidinyl urea
  • DMDM Hydantoin
  • Parabens -butyl, ethyl, methyl and propyl
  • Aluminum
  • Fluoride
  • Talc
  • Dioxins 

Alcohol

Mouthwashes with an alcohol content of 25% or higher have been implicated in mouth, tongue and throat cancers. Alcohol acts as a solvent in the mouth, making tissues more vulnerable to carcinogens. Men had a 60% higher risk and women a 90% higher risk of these cancers, compared to those not using the mouthwash. (National Cancer Institute 4/22/91) Cool Mint Listerine has an alcohol content of 21.6% and has a Warning Label.

Mineral Oil

Petroleum derivative; eye and skin irritant; may cause acne, birth defects; potential carcinogen Polyethylene Glycol Can break down into formaldehyde

Propylene Glycol

A colorless liquid used in anti-freeze solutions, paint, floor wax, and brake fluid as well as cosmetics, toothpaste, shampoos, deodorants and baby wipes. Propylene glycol is a humectant - it keeps things from drying out. “Propylene Glycol: Implicated in contact dermatitis, kidney damage and liver abnormalities; can inhibit skin cell growth in human tests and can damage cell membranes, causing rashes, dry skin and surface damage.” Material Safety Data Sheets

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS) 

This stuff is in 90% of all shampoos, soap, bubble bath and toothpastes on the mass-market and even in "natural" products, like Tom's of Maine.

Gary Young, founder of Young Living, calls sodium lauryl sulfate, “One of the most toxic ingredients you can put on your body”. Sodium lauryl sulfate is a petrochemical. It was originally used as a degreasing agent for cleaning car engines and garage floors. It is also an ingredient in agent orange. Manufacturers of shampoos and toothpastes love it because it is a cheap detergent that produces a lot of foam and bubbles which we all equate with cleansing. Sodium lauryl sulfate is the #1 cause of loss of eyesight in children and allergies in adults. It interferes with the oxygen uptake of the pineal and pituitary glands. It is a major contributor to asthma, emphysema, TB, candida and fungi overgrowth in the intestines. It inhibits enzyme secretion in the body. Put sodium lauryl sulfate on your skin and scalp and its residue ends up in your heart, liver, lung and brain. Sodium lauryl sulfate damages your immune system. Sodium lauryl sulfate is rapidly taken up and accumulated by eye tissues and Put sodium lauryl sulfate on your skin and scalp and its residue ends up in your heart, liver, lung and brain. Sodium lauryl sulfate damages your immune system. Sodium lauryl sulfate is rapidly taken up and accumulated by eye tissues. It may cause cataracts. Gary Young - “It is a deadly, deadly poison.”

Ironically, sodium lauryl sulfate is used in clinical studies to irritate skin tissue and it also corrodes hair follicles and impairs our ability to grow hair! How many years have you been rubbing shampoo with sodium lauryl sulfate onto your scalp? "Americans love foamy products, and sodium lauryl sulfate is what makes all that foam in most shampoos and toothpastes. But SLS causes drying of the skin, and it dries and abnormally degreases skin's protective lipid barrier. When you dry up that barrier you expose the skin and gum tissue to bacteria." ("What's the Brush?" Alternative Medicine, August 2002) One of the best ways to absorb supplements or medications is to put them under the tongue. If your mouth is the premier absorption site in your body, what do you think happens when you put toothpaste containing sodium lauryl sulfate in your mouth?

Chlorine

“Chlorine is one of the most toxic and reactive elements known to man. During World War I, the Germans used chlorine gas as a chemical weapon of warfare. There are many studies showing that chlorine causes cancer, birth defects and miscarriages in pregnant women.” ( “Tap Water Poisons - Proving Toxicity After the Fact” 27 June, 2001. www.alternativemedicine.com/digest) A bath and shower filter is more important than a drinking water filter!

A person can absorb 600% more contaminants in a ten-minute shower than drinking chlorinated water all day.

The EPA now reports that people who drink and bathe in chlorinated water are 50% more likely of developing cancer. A professor of water chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh claims that exposure to vaporized chemicals in water supplied through showering, bathing and inhalation is 100 times greater than through drinking water. (The Nader Report - Troubled Waters on Tap. Center for Study of Responsive Law.) In a lifetime, 50 lbs. of toxic waste and pollutants may enter a body from drinking water and at least 450 lbs. may enter the body through skin absorption.

"Many people are unaware that a large number of our prescription anti-depressant drugs are laced with chlorine. Examples of chlorinated and fluorinated drugs include Paxil, Prozac and Zoloft. Hydrochloride is another orally administered antidepressant." (Young Living article "Chlorine - The Deadly 'Protectant'") DEA Diethanolamine is found in over 600 home and personal care products, including shampoos, conditioners, bubble baths, lotions, cosmetics, soaps, laundry and dishwashing detergents. Proven to cause cancer when applied to the skin of rats. Dr. Samuel Epstein, author of The Safe Shopper’s Bible, and the world’s leading authority on toxicology, has issued a stern warning regarding the use of cocamide DEA or lauramide DEA. DEA has been linked with kidney, liver and other organ damage, according to several government -funded research studies.. This is because it cannot be easily excreted from the body, but instead builds up in the fatty tissues of the liver, brain, kidney and spleen with repeated oral and dermal exposure.

“The FDA accepts that the presence of DEA and TEA in cosmetics can pose a significant consumer health threat. In the 1970s it published a notice in the Federal Register in which it urged the industry to remove these products from cosmetics.” (Steinman and Epstein, 1995, Young Living Newsletter)
FD&C Dyes Many commercial products use FD&C dyes. Many of these are coal tar dyes, which may be carcinogenic. Some artificial colors have been linked to digestive and immune system problems. Artificial colors are thought to increase allergies and hypersensitivity in children.

Artificial "fragrance"

Eighty to ninety percent of materials used in fragrance are synthesized, mostly from petroleum products. Materials used in fragrance (such as some phthalates) are suspected hormone disruptors.
Imidazolidinyl urea Strong irritant; causes contact dermatitis, may contain formaldehyde

Parabens

Most of us know the synthetic preservatives - the Parabens and their children - Butyl, Ethyl, Methyl and Propyl. We use them every day! Parabens are hormone disruptors.

Aluminum 

 Many deodorants and anti-perspirants contain aluminum compounds. Aluminum acts as a toxin in your body. “Dr. Daniel Perl, Director of Neuropathology at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, suggests, ‘…avoid aerosol antiperspirants. Aluminum in aerosol form may be more readily absorbed into the brain through nasal passages.’” (The University of California, Berkeley Wellness Letter, April 1993 v.9n7 p.1) “Studies link aluminum to Alzheimer’s disease…The evidence is strong enough that the prudent person will eliminate all food and cosmetic sources of aluminum and will use aluminum cooking utensils only if they’re coated,” suggests Gary Price Todd, M.D., author Nutrition, Health and Disease.

Fluoride 

Fluoride levels as low as one part per million - the amount added to city water supplies - cause a breakdown of collagen, which makes up about thirty percent of the body. This amount of fluoride, coupled with a poor diet, not only contributes to wrinkling, but to speeding up the entire aging process: weakening of bones, ligaments, muscles and tendons.

Fluoride is a toxic waste product. After years of propaganda and lobbying by the smelting industries, the Public Health Service officially endorsed fluoridation of our nation's water supply in 1950. Since then, two-thirds of the nation's reservoirs have been fluoridated. "In 1977, congressional hearings revealed that the government had never cancer-tested fluoride. An investigation by the NCI was ordered and twelve years later, in 1989, upon completion of the study, it was determined that there was 'equivocal evidence' that fluoride caused bone cancer in male rats." "Zia's Essential Connection", Vol. 3, Issue 7, July 2003

"Studies have found an association between elevated fluoride and decreased IQs in children. Fluoride facilitates the uptake of aluminum into the brain producing amyloid deposits that are associated with Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia. Just over two grams of fluoride (roughly a teaspoon) is enough to kill a 160-pound adult, while just 300 mg. is enough to kill a 20-pound child. For decades, we have been told a lie, a lie that has led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans and the weakening of the immune systems of tens of millions more. This lie is called fluoridation. A process we were led to believe was a safe and effective method of protecting teeth from decay is in fact a fraud. In recent years it's been shown that fluoridation is neither essential for good health nor protective of teeth. What it does is poison the body. We should all at this point be asking how and why public health policy and the American media continue to live with and perpetuate this scientific sham." Gary Null, Ph.D. ("Fluoridation: Cavity Preventer or Toxic Waste?" Young Living Newsletter)
 
As of April 7, 1997 the FDA required warning labels on all fluoride dental care products (toothpaste).

Talcum powder

Talc is chemically similar to asbestos, a known cancer causing substance. Talc is found in body and baby powders, cosmetics, even condoms.

“A possible tie between talcum powder and ovarian cancer, long suspected because of talc’s chemical similarity to asbestos, was strongly supported last week when a study found a higher risk of cancer among women who dusted themselves with talc or used feminine deodorant sprays. The study, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, found that women who used talcum powder in the genital area had an increased ovarian cancer risk of 60% and women who used feminine deodorant sprays had a 90% increased risk.” (U.S. News and World Report, March 17, 1997 v.122n10p.77)
 
Dioxin

The paper industry uses chlorine to bleach paper and paper products. Dioxin is a chemical byproduct of the manufacturing of chlorine-bleached paper. Dioxin is believed to be the single most carcinogenic chemical known to science. The EPA has found dioxin to be 300,000 times more potent a carcinogen than DDT. Dioxins are “potent endocrine disruptors” and have been linked to a host of women’s health problems. Dioxin is in bleached coffee filters, disposable diapers, paper towels, sanitary napkins, tampons and bathroom tissue…I can’t imagine how much dioxin is absorbed by babies who are wrapped in disposable diapers 24 hours a day for 2 years...

Studies show that 40-70 percent of the dioxin in bleached coffee filters can leach into your coffee. Dioxin found in paper milk cartons also leaches into the milk you drink. Thanks to chlorine pollution, Americans ingest a daily amount of dioxin that is already 300 to 600 times greater than the EPA’s so-called “safe” dose.

Dr. Edward Fujimoto warned against freezing drinking water in plastic water bottles, as this releases dioxin from the plastic into the water. Hot coffee in styrofoam cups also causes the toxins in the styrofoam to leach into your coffee. Dr. Fujimoto also warned against putting food containing fats into a plastic container and then heating them in a microwave, as this will release dioxins into the food. Also, use paper towels instead of saran wrap to cover food when you are nuking it, as heating the saran wrap (a plastic) causes it to drip poisonous toxins into your food. An even better health tip - throw your microwave out.

Phthalates

"Scientists have found chemicals called phthalates, which are know to cause birth defects in animals, in many personal care items like makeup, hairspray, soap and also plastic food wrap." Phthalates are hormone disruptors.

About one billion pounds of 25 different phthalate compounds are produced each year, and they tend to accumulate in fat tissue and are easily absorbed through the skin. Major sources: plastic wrap, soft plastics, including soft plastic toys, plastic medical equipment and some personal care products.


P.S.

Have you heard the expression "If you cannot eat it, don't put it on your skin?" Most of the cosmetic companies use questionable ingredients in products that promise to keep us young and beautiful. If you are using such products because you cannot afford organic, cruelty free skincare, please reconsider your choice. Use organic coconut oil or raw cacao butter instead. - Dominique

*This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Nattokinase - The Secret to Japanese Longevity

By Dr. Nicholas Calvino

Recently a new enzyme with potent fibrinolytic activity, that rivals pharmaceutical agents, has been discovered and shows great potential in providing support for hyper-coagulative states and in supporting the activation of many of the bodies 3,000 endogenous enzymes. This all natural enzyme, Nattokinase, is derived from fermented soy and the bacteria Bacillus natto. Already, backed by strong and novel research, Nattokinase shows promise in supporting areas such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, angina, venous stasis, thrombosis, embolism, atherosclerosis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, retinal pathology, hemorrhoid, varicose veins, soft tissue rheumatism, muscle spasm, poor healing, chronic inflammation and pain, peripheral vascular disease, hypertension, tissue oxygen deprivation, infertility, and other gynecology conditions (e.g. endometriosis, uterine fibroids).

Fermented Soy Beans

There are three major groups of biological enzymes:
  • Food Enzymes
  • Digestive Enzymes 
  • Metabolic Enzymes. 
In the past, the therapeutic use of enzymes has largely focused on the use of digestive enzymes. Digestive enzymes can be directly beneficial because they assist in digestion, help regulate immune responses in the intestinal tract, and relieve the body of its relative requirement of digestive enzyme production, allowing for biological energy and resources to be further allocated to the production of metabolic enzymes, indirectly. Recently, however, a new enzyme has been isolated from a traditional fermented Japanese food (although it is consumed by other cultures in the same or similar forms), that appears to have metabolic effects and to work directly in concert with the metabolic enzymes. This means that it will complement the somewhat different digestive enzymes.

The name of this new enzyme is Nattokinase (meaning the enzyme from Natto) and has been called, "The Enzyme of Enzymes” by its discoverer, Dr. Hiroyuki Sumi. Natto has been used in Japanese culture for over 1000 years for its popular taste and as a folk remedy for heart and vascular diseases, and now we know why: it contains Nattokinase, a very potent fibrinolytic (breaks down fibrin, a blood clotting protein) enzyme, which has shown remarkable ability to affect blood clotting and a possible ability to regulate and activate various other metabolic enzymes. Natto is produced by a fermentation process by adding Bacillus natto, a beneficial bacterium, to boiled soybeans. The resulting nattokinase enzyme, is produced when Bacillus natto acts on the soybeans. Nattokinase has been the subject of 17 studies, including two small human trials. While other soy foods contain enzymes, it is only the natto preparation that contains the specific nattokinase enzyme.

Nattokinase & Fibrin

Fibrin is a protein that when activated forms fibrinogen, which is responsible for blood clotting. This is an important and protective mechanism that protects the body from excessive bleeding, say, when you cut yourself. However, in many instances, this process becomes over-activated or becomes "stuck” in high gear. This irregular clotting has been implicated in a variety of serious health conditions, namely, cardiovascular disease. The magnificent thing about Nattokinase is that it appears to have many, if not most, of the benefits of pharmaceutical agents designed to regulate blood clotting (e.g. Warfarin, Heparin, t-PA, Urokinase, etc), without any of the side effects of these medications. Furthermore, while these medications have to be injected and only provide a very brief time of benefit (a few hours), Nattokinase is effective when taken orally and its benefits linger many times longer. Standard doses of Nattokinase vary from 250-1,000 mg and positive effects can be seen with as little as 50 mg.

Blood clots form when strands of protein called fibrin accumulate in a blood vessel. In the heart, blood clots cause blockage of blood flow to muscle tissue. If blood flow is blocked, the oxygen supply to that tissue is cut off and it eventually dies. This can result in angina and heart attacks. Clots in chambers of the heart can mobilize to the brain. In the brain, blood clots also block blood and oxygen from reaching necessary areas, which can result in senility and/or stroke.  Fibrinolytic enzymes are normally generated in the cells of the blood vessels. As the body ages, production of these enzymes begins to decline, making blood more prone to coagulation. Since these cells exist throughout the body, such as in the arteries, veins and lymphatic system, poor production of thrombolytic enzymes can lead to the development of clotting prone conditions virtually anywhere in the body.

Researchers from Biotechnology Research Laboratories and JCR Pharmaceuticals Co. of Kobe, Japan, tested Nattokinase’s ability to dissolve a thrombus in the carotid arteries of rats. Animals treated with Nattokinase regained 62 percent of blood flow, whereas those treated with plasmin regained just 15.8 percent of blood flow. Researchers from JCR Pharmaceuticals, Oklahoma State University, and Miyazaki Medical College tested nattokinase on 12 healthy Japanese volunteers (6 men and 6 women, between the ages of 21 and 55). They gave the volunteers 200 grams of natto (the food) before breakfast, and then tracked fibrinolytic activity through a series of blood plasma tests. The tests indicated that the natto generated a heightened ability to dissolve blood clots: On average, the volunteers’ ELT (a measure of how long it takes to dissolve a blood clot) dropped by 48 percent within two hours of treatment, and volunteers retained an enhanced ability to dissolve blood clots for 2 to 8 hours. As a control, researchers later fed the same amount of boiled soybeans to the same volunteers and tracked their fibrinolytic activity. The tests showed no significant change.

Nattokinase appears to have the added benefit of significantly reducing elevated blood pressure (an often concomitant condition in cardiovascular disease risk factors, such as high fibrin). Nattokinase appears to be safe, and has been used for over 1,000 years safely with no reports of toxicity. Various other nutritional supplements / herbs have been reported to have fibronlytic activity; however, the potency of Nattokinase appears to be superior. Furthermore, Nattokinase also appears to be an activator of various other metabolic enzymes and vitamins, cleaving them from their inactive to their active forms. The strength and magnitude of this direct support for the metabolic enzymes of the body, from an oral enzyme supplement, is unique to Nattokinase and shows great promise as a nutritional supportive agent in exciting and diverse ways.




*This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.
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