Food GOLD: Turmeric is just as effective as 14 pharma drugs but suffers from NONE of the side effects


Image: Food GOLD: Turmeric is just as effective as 14 pharma drugs but suffers from NONE of the side effects

What if you could replace all the pills in your medicine cabinet with just one herb? Depending on what you take and why, that may be possible with turmeric. Its main component, curcumin, boasts enough health-enhancing properties to keep pharmaceutical execs up at night.

In fact, this herb is so powerful that it has been at the heart of more than 12,000 peer-reviewed biomedical studies. Researchers have found more than 800 different therapeutic and preventive uses for curcumin. Here is a look at just a few of the drugs to which it compares favorably, as outlined by Green Med Info.

Metformin (for diabetes)

Diabetes numbers continue to climb as Americans grapple with obesity, and that means more and more people are taking Metformin – and taking on its scary risks as well. However, a study in the journal Biochemistry and Biophysical Research Community found that curcumin has value in treating diabetes; it is between 500 and 100,000 times more powerful than Metformin when it comes to activating AMPK, which raises glucose uptake. Studies have also shown that it has a 100 percent efficacy rate in preventing those with pre-diabetes from developing full-fledged diabetes.

Lipitor (for cholesterol)

A 2008 study revealed that curcumin compares favorably to atorvastatin, which you may know as Lipitor, when it comes to dealing with the endothelial dysfunction behind atherosclerosis while reducing inflammation and oxidative stress. Other studies have shown that it can impact triglyceride levels, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol. While most of the studies so far have been done in animals, it is believed that it could have the same effect in humans, although the right levels have yet to be established.

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Prozac (for depression)

A study in 2011 found that curcumin compares favorably to the antidepressants fluoxetine (Prozac) and imipramine when it comes decreasing depressive behavior. Best of all, it doesn’t carry the serious side effects that Prozac does, which include sleep problems, tremors, headaches, nausea, a lower sex drive, and suicidal ideation. In addition, it’s well-tolerated by patients.

Researchers believe it works on depression by inhibiting monoamine oxidase, the enzyme that has been linked to depression when it’s present in high amounts in the brain. It also raises levels of calmness-inducing serotonin and dopamine.

Oxaliplatin (for chemotherapy)

A study published in the International Journal of Cancer looked at curcumin’s effects in stopping colorectal cell lines from proliferating. The researchers discovered the herb compared favorably to the chemotherapy drug oxaliplatin. Other studies are underway exploring the impact curcumin has on various types of cancer after animal studies showed it could help prevent illnesses like skin, stomach and colon cancer in rats.

Anti-inflammatory medications

Curcumin is also great for inflammation, which is at the root of many chronic illnesses today such as cancer, metabolic syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease, degenerative diseases, and heart disease. A study published in Oncogene identified it as an effective alternative to drugs like ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen given its strong anti-inflammatory effects, fighting inflammation at the molecular level. Meanwhile, in a study of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, curcumin worked even better than anti-inflammatory drugs.

Curcumin is so effective at addressing such a vast array of conditions that it’s hard to discuss it without sounding like you’re exaggerating. However, turmeric is truly “food gold” and it’s something well worth making a conscious effort to consume more of. You might not be ready to clean out your entire medicine cabinet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start adding this spice to your food. It pairs well with a variety of dishes, soups, salads, stews, and smoothies; consuming turmeric with fats is ideal, and make sure you add a pinch of pepper to boost its bioavailability.

Sources for this article include:

GreenMedInfo.com

NaturalNews.com

VeryWellHealth.com

Breakthrough discovery: Scientists have found where Alzheimer’s starts – in a set of inflamed immune cells


Image: Breakthrough discovery: Scientists have found where Alzheimer’s starts – in a set of inflamed immune cells

Over 5.5 million Americans – mostly over the age of 65 – are battling Alzheimer’s disease, a debilitating condition that kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Alzheimer’s progressively destroys memory and other cognitive functions, causing confusion, anxiety and heartache. The number of people fighting this disease has increased by a staggering 89 percent since 2000.

Now, an exciting new study by researchers from the University of Bonn, Germany, claims to have uncovered the cause of this incurable disease, and the team hopes that their discovery will lead to a breakthrough in treatment within the next decade.

Scientists have understood for some time that Alzheimer’s is associated with a build-up of amyloid plaques in the brain. Amyloid plaques are a sticky build-up which accumulates on the outside of neurons, or nerve cells. While amyloid is a protein that naturally occurs throughout the body, in Alzheimer’s patients this protein divides improperly, creating a form of amyloid which is toxic to neurons in the brain.

Most human trials for Alzheimer’s treatments have focused on trying to target these plaques. All have failed.

The new research is exciting in that it has revealed the root cause of this amyloid plaque build-up: Inflammation in immune cells called microglia, which make up between 10 and 15 percent of all brain cells, and which act as the brain’s first line of immune defense.

Inflammation directly fuels the characteristic amyloid plaque build-up which autopsies have revealed in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.

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The Daily Mail recently reported:

For years inflammation has been suspected of having a role but the exact nature of its involvement has been hard to pin down – until now.

The researchers found the microglia release specks of a protein called ASC in response to it. They stick to the amyloid beta protein – boosting its production. …

ASC reside in a vital inflammatory pathway called the NLRP3 inflammasome which damages brain cells.

The researchers found that this process takes place right from the earliest stages of the disease, and that when an antibody was used in laboratory tests to prevent ASC from binding to the amyloid protein, the damaging, sticky amyloid plaque build-up was prevented.

The research team is excited about the possibility of developing a chemical treatment which can directly target inflammasomes, and hope that an Alzheimer’s “cure” might be on the horizon within the next five to 10 years.

Of course, any such chemical cure is likely to carry a slew of side effects, and will more than likely be very costly.

On the other hand, the knowledge that inflammation is the root cause of Alzheimer’s is very powerful, because inflammation can be avoided and even reversed. (Related: Six healthy habits effective for preventing Alzheimer’s disease.)

An article published by Harvard Medical School, for example, noted:

Doctors are learning that one of the best ways to quell inflammation lies not in the medicine cabinet, but in the refrigerator.

The article noted that while inflammation serves the purpose of protecting your body against threatening invaders, inflammation can sometimes persist for long periods of time, even when no such threat exists. It added:

That’s when inflammation can become your enemy. Many major diseases that plague us—including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, depression, and Alzheimer’s—have been linked to chronic inflammation.

One of the most powerful tools to combat inflammation comes not from the pharmacy, but from the grocery store.

The foods we eat we will either cause or prevent inflammation; it’s as simple as that.

Foods that cause inflammation include refined carbohydrates, fries and other junk food, soda, processed meats, margarine, and conventionally farmed meat that has been subjected to routine antibiotic and hormone treatments.

On the other side of the spectrum, foods that actively fight inflammation include most of the foods that form part of the Mediterranean diet, including tomatoes, olive oil, green leafy veggies, fatty fish like salmon and tuna, and fresh, organic fruit.

Discover the latest information and breakthroughs at Alzheimers.news.

https://www.brighteon.com/embed/5848224213001

Sources for this article include:

DailyMail.co.uk

Alz.org

Health.Harvard.edu

Here’s what research shows about the mental health benefits of ginger


Image: Here’s what research shows about the mental health benefits of ginger

Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory that also offers other health benefits. In fact, the versatile plant can even help boost your mental health.

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) comes from the rhizome or root of a flowering plant native to China, but the spice can grow in any area that is warm and humid. Aside from its use as a natural remedy for digestive disorders, ginger can also be used to address arthritis, memory loss and dementia, and muscle aches and pains.

Thanks to scientific research, experts are beginning to understand how ginger works. To date, research has identified over 100 compounds in ginger. More than 50 of these are antioxidants, which is crucial to brain health since the organ is vulnerable to free radical damage.

Ginger is often used as an anti-inflammatory, making it a popular natural remedy for arthritis. The plant’s anti-inflammatory property can also help people with brain disorders like ADHD, Alzheimer’s, anxiety, brain fog, and depression, which are often associated with chronic inflammation of the brain. Experts believe that ginger’s anti-inflammatory effects on the brain are due to two unique compounds called 6-shogaol and 10-gingerol.

Like the Indian spice turmeric, ginger also has a compound called curcumin. This compound is a natural antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antiviral. Curcumin is a potent herbal brain supplement ingredient that can help address anxiety, brain aging, depression, and neurodegenerative diseases. (Related: What Happens To Your Body When You Start Eating Ginger Every Day.)

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Ginger for brain health

Your body is constantly under attack from oxidative stress. Oxygen in the body splits into single atoms with unpaired electrons, and electrons can often be found in pairs. These atoms, called free radicals, scavenge the body to find other electrons so they can become a pair. When these atoms are paired, they cause damage to cells, DNA, and proteins. Studies show that free radicals are linked to diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, cancer, and Parkinson’s, among others.

Your brain is prone to free radical damage since it requires a lot of oxygen. Free radicals are caused by common factors like:

  • Air pollution
  • Fried food
  • Grilled meat
  • Lack of sleep
  • Radiation from your mobile phone and computer
  • Stress

Antioxidants in ginger can also protect the brain from further damage and memory loss after a stroke.

Ginger increases the level of two of the most important brain chemicals: dopamine and serotonin. Depression is strongly associated with deficient levels of both chemicals.

Dopamine is called the “motivation molecule” because it helps you focus and be productive. Dopamine is also in charge of your pleasure-reward system. Meanwhile, serotonin is known as the “happiness molecule” because it helps sustain a positive mood.

The spice is traditionally used to treat memory loss and dementia and research has determined that ginger can help improve other cognitive functions besides memory. According to a study, healthy adults given dried ginger supplements showed improvements in attention, reaction time, and working memory.

People with diabetes also rely on ginger as a natural remedy because it can help control blood sugar, especially if you are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Ginger has antioxidants called gingerols that enhance insulin sensitivity and prevent certain neurological diabetic complications.

Ginger is an effective remedy that can minimize the pain of migraine headaches. The spice has similar effects to sumatriptan, a commonly prescribed migraine drug that narrows blood vessels to the brain. But unlike sumatriptan, which is associated with negative side effects, ginger can relieve migraines without any side effects.

Suggested ginger dosages

Ginger, which comes in many forms, can be used as a food and as a supplement. Ginger supplements are available as capsules, crystals, essential oils, extracts, loose powder, and tinctures.

A typical dose of ginger is one gram, and the best way to ingest this dose is by taking two ginger capsules. Most supplements contain at 500 milligrams (mg) per capsule.

Below are some ginger dosage equivalents:

  • One teaspoon of fresh, grated ginger root
  • Two droppers (or two milliliters [ml]) of liquid ginger extract
  • Two pieces of crystallized ginger (about a one-inch square and 1/4 inch thick for each piece)
  • Four cups of ginger tea (Make the tea by steeping two teaspoons of grated ginger in 32 ounces of water for five to 10 minutes.)

Possible ginger side effects and interactions

When consumed as a food, especially fresh, ginger is considered very safe with little to no side effects. However, when too much ginger is consumed in other forms, especially powdered ginger, it may cause side effects such as bloating, gas, heartburn, and nausea.

Ginger also functions as a blood thinner. Avoid taking it as a supplement if you take blood-thinning medication such as warfarin. If you take diabetes or high blood pressure medications, talk to a healthcare professional to determine adjustments to your medication if you want to take supplemental ginger.

Ginger is a versatile herbal remedy that can help relieve digestive upset, and it also offers various benefits for brain health and function. Add fresh ginger to your diet or take it as a supplement to enjoy its many benefits and improve both your physical and mental well-being.

Visit Healing.news to read more articles about ginger and other natural cures that can help improve your mental health.

Sources include:

BeBrainFit.com

LiveScience.com

Curcumin reduces the effects of a high-fat diet


Image: Curcumin reduces the effects of a high-fat diet

Diets high in fat are known as major contributors to many health diseases, such as heart disease, and cancer. Researchers at Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research in India discovered that taking curcumin supplements minimizes the damage caused by a high-fat diet.

In their study, the researchers looked at the beneficial effects of curcumin on inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance in high-fat-fed rats. They examined two groups of rats: one group fed with a high-fat diet only and another group given a high-fat diet with 200 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) body weight of curcumin every day for 10 weeks.

The researchers measured the rats’ food intake, body weight, and biochemical parameters at the start and the end of the study. After 10 weeks, they also measured the oxidative stress parameters in skeletal muscle and liver triglyceride levels.

The results revealed that the high-fat diet increased the body weight and liver fat. It also increased the levels of plasma glucose, insulin, insulin resistance, total cholesterol, triglycerides, and very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (VLDL-c), and decreased high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.

The high-fat diet also increased inflammation and oxidative stress in skeletal muscles. It also increased liver triglyceride content and caused fat buildup in the liver.

However, the supplementation with curcumin significantly improved these changes. Curcumin supplementation significantly reduced body weight, liver adipose tissue, glucose, insulin, and insulin resistance. In addition, it decreased plasma levels of total cholesterol, triglycerides, VLDL-c, and inflammatory markers, and increased HDL cholesterol. Moreover, it reduced oxidative stress, hepatic triglyceride content, and liver fat deposition.

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With these findings, the researchers concluded that curcumin could improve lipid levels, oxidative stress, inflammation, and insulin resistance caused by a high-fat diet.

Curcumin and turmeric

Curcumin is the active ingredient of the spice called turmeric and is responsible for most of the spice’s health benefits. It takes up about two to eight percent of most turmeric preparations and gives turmeric its distinct color and flavor.  Here are some health benefits of turmeric and curcumin backed up by scientific evidence:

  • Cancer: One of the most notable benefits of turmeric and curcumin is their ability to prevent cancer. Turmeric and curcumin may help prevent cancer by reducing the activity of colon and other cancer cells. A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences revealed that curcumin inhibits to the DYRK2 enzyme. Inhibiting this enzyme stops protein complexes known as proteasomes that contribute to cancer development. This action interrupts the proliferation of cancer cells, reducing tumors, and slowing cancer’s growth. This is beneficial for preventing proteasome-addicted cancers, such as triple-negative breast cancer and multiple myeloma.
  • Antibacterial: Turmeric and curcumin have powerful antibacterial effects. They have been reported to inhibit the growth of many disease-causing bacteria.
  • Antifungal: Studies have also reported that turmeric and curcumin have antifungal effects. They can disrupt fungal cell membranes and could be used with other fungal medicines for better effect.
  • Diabetes: Turmeric and curcumin can improve blood sugar metabolism and potentially reduce the effects of diabetes in the body.
  • Heart disease: As mentioned in the Indian study, curcumin reduced bad LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. These effects, which were also seen in earlier studies, can cut the risk of heart disease.
  • Liver health: Turmeric and curcumin can also protect the liver from damage caused by oxidative stress.
  • Obesity: Research has shown that turmeric and curcumin may inhibit the inflammatory pathway related to obesity and may help control body fat.
  • Osteoarthritis: Plant compounds in turmeric, including curcumin, can decrease inflammatory markers and relieve osteoarthritis symptoms, such as pain and stiffness.

TRUE CAUSES of the top 6 preventable diseases – plus remedies


 

Image: TRUE CAUSES of the top 6 preventable diseases – plus remedies

Do you realize that all of the preventable diseases that U.S. medical doctors can’t seem to cure are ones they now refer to as genetic, meaning you inherited them? But that’s next to impossible, since those same diseases barely existed in America just five generations ago. It all started with chemical medicine made in laboratories, then came processed, canned food, then fluoridated water, then vaccines, and now GMOs. It’s all one big formula that feeds the chronic sick care system of disease and disorder. What most people fail to realize is that most of it is NOT inherited, but rather preventable and even reversible. Consider this:

The American allopathic system of medicine relies on two major platforms in order to remain in business. Part one: Never cure anything, but only address and manage symptoms of disease and disorder with lab-made concoctions and surgery. Part two: Tell all patients that any serious disease or disorder they have is genetic and has been inherited from their parents’ or grandparents’ genes, so the “victim” (allopathic patient for life) won’t ever figure out that they can prevent (and often reverse) these diseases and disorders with nutritional remedies.

Want to prevent (and cure) conventional food diseases? Limit your “junk science” intake and focus on nutrients. Here are the top six preventable diseases with information on how to remedy them, naturally.

#1. Cancer

Hardly any type of cancer is inherited or contagious. Almost all types of cancer are caused by chemical consumption, and conversely can be prevented and even reversed by ending chemical consumption. Cancer is not actually a disease. It’s called that to scare Americans into going to medical doctors for prescriptions, surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments. This is big business. Doctors and surgeons get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars yearly, whether you get better or whether you suffer more and die at their hands. More people die each year from chemotherapy than from cancer, by the way.

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Cancer is a disorder of the cells that feeds off chemicals in food, including artificial food colorings, artificial sweeteners, bleach (think of all white foods), fluoride (tap water), nitrates, and chemicals in cooking oils. You can reverse cancer by alkalizing the body with organic produce, properly filtered water, and a daily handful of the right supplements.

Look into garlic, licorice root, cool cayenne, oil of oregano, aloe, vitamin C, vitamin D, medicinal mushrooms, hemp seed oil, blackcurrant seed oil, and even CBD oils. The answer will then be “in your hands.”

#2. Heart Disease and Strokes

Most cases of heart disease and strokes are caused by blood becoming clogged, preventing blood from flowing properly, thus limiting the right amount of oxygen from reaching the rest of your body, including your brain. Top causes of these totally preventable and curable “diseases” are canola oil (yes, even organic), animal fat from meat and dairy products, vegetable shortening, and America’s beloved margarine.

Switch to a mainly plant-based diet immediately and engage in moderate exercise and watch those problems dissipate within months, if not weeks.

#3. Dementia

The main causes of dementia are foods that coagulate and heavy metal toxins, including aluminum and mercury. Refer to the “food stuff” covered in #2 above. Toxic amounts of aluminum are commonly found in antacids, vaccines, deodorants, antiperspirants, and tap water. Mercury is found in shockingly high amounts in multi-dose flu vaccines that are recommended by the CDC for 6-month young infants and pregnant women, even though the CDC lied and said mercury was “removed from all childhood vaccines” nearly two decades ago.

Medical doctors never warn their patients about vaccines causing dementia because vaccines are the “holy grail” of the Western chronic sick care “management” Ponzi scheme. Eat clean (organic, non-processed foods) and look into evidence-based “brain foods” and nutrients like coconut oil, avocados, kale, dark chocolate, berries, vitamin B12, and omega 3s.

#4. Anxiety and Depression

Make no mistake, most anxiety and depression are caused by consuming dangerous chemicals found in common, conventional foods today, including aspartame, MSG (monosodium glutamate), and pesticides. Pesticide is the “mother” name for all chemicals engineered into food (GMOs) and all chemical insecticides and herbicides sprayed onto crops and produce, including Roundup.

Nearly all medical doctors and psychiatrists blame all anxiety and depression on genes so they can continue to medicate their patients for life. Easy money. Look into Mucuna Pruriens (raise dopamine levels naturally), St. John’s Wort, and dark organic chocolate.

#5. Chronic Inflammation

Got that constant ringing in your ears? Got achy joints? Got excess mucus and chronic congestion? Got arthritis? Got irritable bowels? You’re suffering from chronic inflammation. Get off all that conventional gluten and switch to an organic, plant-based diet immediately. Make sure you drink lots of properly filtered water (or spring water).

#6. Obesity

Another disorder that M.D.s love to say is genetic is obesity. Visit a naturopathic physician instead of those allopathic quacks who never studied a lick of nutrition in medical school. No amount of surgery or chemicals could ever cure your junk food disorder. Switch to an organic, plant-based diet and exercise for 20 minutes a day.

Accumulating evidence suggests curcumin and turmeric can treat psychiatric disorders


Living with a psychiatric disorder can be devastating for both sufferers and their loved ones. Unfortunately, many of the solutions offered by modern medicine do more harm than good while offering little in the way of relief. Thankfully, researchers have discovered that a compound in the popular Indian spice turmeric has the potential to effectively treat psychiatric disorders like bipolar disorder and depression.

You may have heard the fanfare about turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties, which it gets from a compound within the spice known as curcumin. It has long been used in traditional Chinese medicine and has been gaining popularity in Western medicine in recent years. This polyphenol is being revered for its protective, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and is being used to help fight cancer and stop the cognitive decline of neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s. Non-toxic and affordable, it’s showing a lot of promise in helping deal with many of the health problems facing people today.

Image: Accumulating evidence suggests curcumin and turmeric can treat psychiatric disorders

The same anti-inflammatory qualities that make it so good at addressing issues like arthritis can also extend to mood disorders. Not only does it reduce levels of tumor necrosis factor alpha and inflammatory interleukin-1 beta, but it also reduces salivary cortisol concentrations while raising the levels of plasma brain-derived neurotrophic factor.

A study carried out by researchers at Australia’s Murdoch University found that curcumin extracts reduced people’s anxiety and depression scores. They noted that it was particularly effective at alleviating anxiety. Moreover, even low doses of the spice extract were effective in addressing depression. In addition, the researchers found it worked quite well on those with atypical depression, which is a marker of bipolar depression.

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Growing evidence of curcumin’s usefulness in addressing psychiatric disorders

Curcumin has been found in other studies to be just as effective as one of the most popular SSRI antidepressants on the market, Prozac, making it an excellent option for those who wish to avoid the negative side effects of this psychiatric medication. It works by raising levels of dopamine and serotonin, two vital neurotransmitters related to depression. In addition, because depression is believed to be caused by chronic inflammation, it makes sense that curcumin’s ability to reduce inflammation could alleviate depression.

Interestingly, studies have also found that when curcumin is taken either alone or with saffron, it reduces the symptoms of anxiety and depression in those suffering from major depressive disorder. When taken alongside the herb fenugreek, meanwhile, it can reduce fatigue, stress and anxiety in those with extreme occupational stress. Curcumin supplementation has also been shown to significantly improve compulsiveness and memory loss in those with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

It’s also worth noting that curcumin can be taken alongside antidepressants safely; studies have even shown taking the two together can enhance their effectiveness. However, it’s important to keep in mind that antidepressants carry a lot of risks, so it’s worth exploring whether curcumin alone could be enough to alleviate an individual’s depression.

The idea of curcumin helping with mood is supported by a study that was published in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry earlier this year. In that study, researchers found that participants who took curcumin supplements noted mood improvements, and they plan to explore this connection in a study of patients with depression. The researchers expressed optimism that curcumin could be a safe way to provide people with cognitive benefits; they also discovered the spice can improve memory.

Now, researchers are looking for ways to increase curcumin’s bioavailability so that people can enjoy the benefits of this all-star natural treatment. In the meantime, be sure to add black pepper to your dishes when cooking with turmeric or look for curcumin supplements that contain piperine, a black pepper extract, as this boosts its bioavailability.

Dementia or something else? See which health conditions that are often mistaken for the degenerative disease


Image: Dementia or something else? See which health conditions that are often mistaken for the degenerative disease

(Natural News) The Alzheimer’s Association defines dementia as “a general term for loss of memory and other mental abilities severe enough to interfere with daily life.” However, over 40 percent of dementia diagnoses are actually wrong.

Here are seven health conditions that are often confused for dementia or Alzheimer’s.

  1. Side effects of artificial flavors, food colors, and sweeteners – These artificial additives are linked to dementia symptoms. Studies have determined that aspartame, an artificial sweetener, can impair cognitive function and cause memory loss.
  2. Inflammation from food allergies, low-level infections, Lyme Disease, and mold – Inflammation occurs when the body tries to get rid of toxic elements or organisms. Studies imply that neuroinflammation may cause mental disorders.
  3. Mercury or other heavy metal poisoning – Silver amalgam fillings contain 50 percent mercury that isn’t stable or inert. The mercury in filling “off-gasses, crosses the blood-brain barrier, and destroys neurons even without contact.” It’s hazardous to remove these fillings unless mercury-safe protocols are observed. Annual flu shots also contain heavy metals like aluminum and mercury.
  4. Nutritional imbalances and deficiencies – Deficiencies of folate (vitamin B9), magnesium, omega 3s, probiotics, selenium, vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin D, and other nutrients may cause the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia. To address deficiencies, follow a balanced Mediterranean-style diet to slow down cognitive decline and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. Coconut oil can boost brain health while turmeric can improve your memory.
  5. Prescription medication side effects – Drugs, like pain medications, psychotropic drugs, statins (for lowering blood cholesterol), and sleep medication may severely disrupt cognition and increase the risk of dementia.
  6. Stress and stagnation or inactivity – Stress will elevate cortisol levels, and this causes inflammation. Inflammation then results in cognitive impairment, delayed healing time, hormone imbalances, hypertension, increased blood sugar levels, and susceptibility to disease. The body’s self-healing mechanisms requires the unimpeded flow of blood, lymph, and other fluids, which are improved with exercise. However, if you lead a sedentary lifestyle, cells in your body may shut down or become blocked, which can impede the natural healing process. Misdiagnosis linked to stress and inactivity often occurs in individuals with depression or alcohol addiction. (Related: The many ways stress makes you sick.)
  7. Thyroid and other hormonal imbalances – Individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia often have low T3 thyroid hormone levels, which aren’t measured in standard thyroid tests. At least 10 to 15 percent of residents in all nursing home residents are misdiagnosed due to low T3 levels.

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Determining a cure for dementia

Experts from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging are collaborating on a new program that can help individuals with dementia, which may prevent misdiagnosis in patients with other conditions.

The research team reported that this is the first study of its kind and that it can prove that natural therapies may help slow the progress of dementia and even reverse it. Data from the paper, titled “Reversal of Cognitive Decline: A novel therapeutic program” and published in the journal AGING, revealed that out of the 10 participants diagnosed with dementia, nine “got their minds back.”

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As people grow older, their fear of developing cognitive decline increases. Alzheimer’s disease is one of the several types of dementia. An individual with the disease may have problems with their behavior, memory, and thinking. The symptoms of Alzheimer’s tend to develop and worsen gradually until they interfere with simple daily tasks.

At least 5.4 million Americans have Alzheimer’s while 30 million people worldwide are diagnosed with the condition. Experts posit that by 2050, 160 million individuals around the world, including 13 million Americans, will have the disease. To date, Alzheimer’s, the third leading cause of death in the U.S., can’t be treated.

Dr. Dale Bredesen, the study’s lead author and a professor of neurology at The Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research at UCLA, supposes that different factors affect the development of dementia and Alzheimer’s. For the study, Dr. Bredesen and his colleagues developed personalized and comprehensive protocols to address memory loss in 10 patients.

The study results were positive, and nine of the 10 participants showed improvement in their memories after being on the program for only three to six months. Out of the 10 patients, six patients have discontinued working or were struggling with their jobs when they joined the study. Once they joined the program, the six participants were able to work again or continue working with improved performance.

Five of the participants had memory loss linked to Alzheimer’s while the rest had amnestic mild cognitive impairment and subjective cognitive impairment. Only one patient with late-stage Alzheimer’s didn’t improve.

Doctors used a “systems approach” to treat the patients who joined the program. This “complex, 36-point therapeutic program” included:

  • Brain stimulation
  • Comprehensive changes in diet
  • Exercise
  • Sleep optimization
  • Specific pharmaceuticals and vitamins

The program also involved other steps concerning brain chemistry. Dr. Bredesen concluded that even if the program is complex and involves many lifestyle changes, the protocol is worth implementing since its only side effect was “improved health and an optimal body mass index, a stark contrast to the side effects of many drugs.”

You can read more articles about natural cures for the different conditions mistaken as dementia at Health.news.

Sources include:

GreenMedInfo.com

ALZ.org

CONFIRMED: Quercetin-tocotrienols combination combats cancer


Image: CONFIRMED: Quercetin-tocotrienols combination combats cancer

The battle against cancer is heading into new territory, as scientists explore the healing ability of substances that support the body’s cells, instead of killing them off. Researchers from the Italian National Institute of Health and Science on Aging (INRCA) have made a breakthrough discovery for preventing the spread of malignant tumors. A natural plant-based combination, including quercetin and tocotrienols, effectively targets aging cells that cause chronic inflammation and cancer. This dynamic, anti-cancer duo causes stubborn cancer cells to die off and simultaneously promotes the growth of normal cells.

This dynamic duo heals the body at the cellular level by triggering a die-off sequence within aging and malignant cells. If old, decrepit cells become inefficient at performing cellular division, new cells cannot be created. If these senile cells refuse to die off, a condition called cellular senescence sets in. This causes an accumulation of aged cells that emit pro-inflammatory chemicals into the body. This process promotes aging in the body and increases cancer risk. Quercetin and tocotrienols help to remove aging cells so healthy cells have space to flourish.

Moreover, quercetin and tocotrienols identify malignant cancer cells and speed up their cellular senescence. This dynamic duo effectively target unwanted cancer cells and speed up their death, preventing cancer cell replication. The two natural substances remove inflammatory, aging cells and stop malignant cells from growing. This combination is a highly intelligent form of medicine that deciphers dangerous cells and manipulates cellular senescence so that the body can heal itself. The combination can be employed as an adjunct therapy for cancers of many origins. This combination can be used to prevent cancer from taking hold and stop early cancers in their tracks.

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Anti-cancer intelligence of tocotrienols

Tocotrienols are an anti-inflammatory type of vitamin E that can be found in wheat germ, barley, oat, rye, cranberries, blueberries, kiwi, plum, coconut, and some nuts. It is also isolated in supplement form. Research confirms that this form of vitamin E can reverse cell cycle arrest and reduce DNA damage, especially for treatment of breast cancer, pancreatic cancer, and melanoma. However, assimilation of tocotrienols in the human intestine is poor because they are lipophilic in nature (they dissolve in lipids and fats). Researchers must find ways to increase the bio-availability of tocotrienols to increase this vitamin’s therapeutic effects. Intestinal absorption depends upon the secretion of bile and transporters such as ?-tocopherol transfer protein (?-TTP); therefore, assimilation of tocotrienols occurs more readily with food. Nutritionists recommend a daily dose of 150 mg of tocotrienols. One should expect to see therapeutic benefits with supplementation after ninety days.

The healing nature of quercetin

Quercetin is a plant-based flavonoid and antioxidant that helps plants defend against disease. When quercetin is combined with tocotrienols, synergy is created; together these natural substances slow the aging process, prolong the life of healthy cells, and induce apoptosis of malignant cancer cells. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, quercetin can benefit seasonal allergies, asthma, bronchitis, and congestion. Quercetin is commonly found in apples, tea, onions, nuts, berries, cauliflower and cabbage and can be isolated and consumed in the form of a supplement. To rid the body of aging cells, nutritionists recommend a daily dose of quercetin (500 to 800 mg) for up to three consecutive months, followed by a maintenance dose of 150 mg a day. It is best to consult a healthcare professional, as many medications can adversely interact with the body when healing substances are introduced.

Sources include:

NaturalHealth365.com

NCBI.NLM.NIH.gov

NaturalPedia.com

NaturalPedia.com

Pharmacology.Imed.Pub

Dark Chocolate Reduces Stress and Inflammation, Boosts Memory and Mood


Story at-a-glance

  • When it comes to chocolate, its cacao content — which is bitter, not sweet — the amount of sugar added, and the processing chocolate undergoes, makes a huge difference in terms of whether it has any health benefits
  • Raw cacao gets its bitter taste from the polyphenols present, and these plant compounds are also responsible for most of the health benefits associated with dark chocolate
  • The cacao bean contains hundreds of naturally occurring compounds, including epicatechin, resveratrol — two powerful antioxidants — phenylethylamine (which boosts mood) and theobromine, which has effects similar to that of caffeine
  • Human trial data reveal chocolate helps improve stress levels, inflammation, mood, memory and immune function, but it must contain at least 70 percent cacao and be sweetened with organic cane sugar
  • A number of other studies have confirmed cacao can benefit your heart, blood vessels, brain and nervous system, and helps combat diabetes and other conditions rooted in inflammation

By Dr. Mercola

Throughout its history, which dates back at least 4,000 years,1 chocolate has been a symbol of luxury, wealth and power. During the 14th century, the Aztecs and Maya even used cacao beans as currency. Modern research has also revealed chocolate has significant health benefits — provided you’re willing to give up the now-familiar sweetness of modern day milk chocolate.

Its cacao content — which is bitter, not sweet — the amount of sugar added, and the processing chocolate undergoes, makes a huge difference in terms of whether it has any health benefits. Raw cacao gets its bitter taste from the polyphenols present, and these plant compounds are also responsible for most of the health benefits associated with dark chocolate. Milk chocolate, on the other hand, has few, if any, redeeming qualities, as it is loaded with sugar, containing very low amounts of flavonol-rich cacao.

Cocoa Contains Hundreds of Health Promoting Chemicals

The cacao bean contains hundreds of naturally occurring compounds with known health benefits, including epicatechin (a flavonoid) and resveratrol, the former of which has both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and is thought to help shield your nerve cells from damage.

Norman Hollenberg, a professor of medicine at Harvard who has spent years studying the Kuna people of Panama who consume up to 40 cups of cocoa a week, believes epicatechin is so important it should be considered a vitamin.2 The Kuna have less than a 10 percent risk of stroke, heart failure, cancer and diabetes, which are the most prevalent diseases ravaging the Western world.3 Kuna elders also have very low rates of high blood pressure, a feature attributed to their high cocoa consumption.

Resveratrol, a potent sirtuin activator, is known for its neuroprotective effects and has been linked in many recent studies to work synergistically with NAD to increase longevity. It has the ability to cross your blood-brain barrier, which allows it to moderate inflammation in your central nervous system (CNS). This is significant because CNS inflammation plays an important role in the development of neurodegenerative diseases.

Research also shows resveratrol is an exercise mimetic, producing similar mitochondrial benefits as exercise by stimulating AMPK and PKC-1alpha, which increase mitochondrial biogenesis and mitophagy. Another compound found in cacao is phenylethylamine, which has been shown to boost mood in a way similar to that of tryptophan, which your body converts to serotonin.

Theobromine, meanwhile, has effects similar to that of caffeine, but without the jitteriness. Cacao is also rich in important minerals such as magnesium, which promotes muscle relaxation and is needed for bone health, iron for red blood cell production, and zinc, needed for cell renewal.

Just be careful and avoid the mistake I made. I assumed since cacao is so wonderful you can take it every day without a break. I used raw cacao nibs in my smoothie for the better part of a year and developed a sensitivity to it. It is best to take a few days off a week so you don’t develop a sensitivity.

Dark Chocolate Supports Brain Health

Most recently, human trial data from Loma Linda University, presented at the Experimental Biology 2018 annual meeting in San Diego, reveal chocolate helps improve stress levels, inflammation, mood, memory and immune function. The caveat? It has to contain at least 70 percent cacao and be sweetened with organic cane sugar. According to Loma Linda University:4

“While it is well-known that cacao is a major source of flavonoids, this is the first time the effect has been studied in human subjects to determine how it can support cognitive, endocrine and cardiovascular health … These studies show us that the higher the concentration of cacao, the more positive the impact on cognition, memory, mood, immunity and other beneficial effects.”

In the first study, 70 percent cacao chocolate consumption was associated with upregulation of several intracellular signaling pathways that are involved in the activation of T-cells, the cellular immune response, and genes involved in the signaling between brain cells and sensory perception. In other words, not only was it found to improve immune function, but dark chocolate may also boost brain plasticity, improving your ability to learn, process and remember new information.

In the second study, which used 70 percent organic cacao chocolate, they assessed the brain’s response to eating 48 grams of dark chocolate using electroencephalography (EEG); first 30 minutes after, and then two hours after. As in the first trial, the dark chocolate was found to enhance neuroplasticity.

Bitter Chocolate Is a Sweet Treat for Your Heart

A number of other studies have confirmed cacao can benefit your heart, blood vessels, brain and nervous system, and helps combat diabetes and other conditions rooted in inflammation. As noted in a paper5 published in the journal Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity:

“Cocoa contains about 380 known chemicals, 10 of which are psychoactive compounds … Cocoa has more phenolics and higher antioxidant capacity than green tea, black tea, or red wine … The phenolics from cocoa may … protect against diseases in which oxidative stress is implicated as a causal or contributing factor, such as cancer. They also have antiproliferative, antimutagenic, and chemoprotective effects, in addition to their anticariogenic effects.”

One 2012 meta-analysis6 found that eating chocolate could slash your risk of cardiovascular disease by 37 percent and your stroke risk by 29 percent. Another meta-analysis7 published that same year found that cocoa/chocolate lowered insulin resistance, reduced blood pressure, increased blood vessel elasticity, and slightly reduced low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol.

A 2015 study8 published in the journal Heart — which also included a systematic review of nine other studies — also found a correlation between chocolate consumption and a lower risk for cardiac events and stroke. The initial analysis included data from nearly 21,000 men and women and had a median follow-up of nearly 12 years. According to the authors:

“The percentage of participants with coronary heart disease (CHD) in the highest and lowest quintile of chocolate consumption was 9.7 percent and 13.8 percent, and the respective rates for stroke were 3.1 percent and 5.4 percent … A total of nine studies with 157 809 participants were included in the meta-analysis.

Higher compared to lower chocolate consumption was associated with significantly lower CHD risk … stroke … composite cardiovascular adverse outcome … and cardiovascular mortality …

Cumulative evidence suggests that higher chocolate intake is associated with a lower risk of future cardiovascular events, although residual confounding cannot be excluded. There does not appear to be any evidence to say that chocolate should be avoided in those who are concerned about cardiovascular risk.”

Flavonol-Rich Foods Can Be Beneficial for Diabetics

Polyphenol-rich cacao can also be beneficial for diabetics. In one study,9 patients consuming 100 grams of dark chocolate for 15 days showed decreased insulin resistance. In another, high-flavonol instant cocoa powder was found to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease in diabetics when consumed three times a day.10 After one month, their blood vessel function was brought from severely impaired to normal.

In fact, the improvement “was as large as has been observed with exercise and many common diabetic medications,” according to the authors, who believe the vascular improvement is largely caused by increased production of nitric oxide, which relaxes your blood vessels. It’s worth noting that the cocoa beverage used here contained much higher amounts of flavonols (321 milligrams per serving) than what you’ll find in your local grocery store.

As noted by lead author Malte Kelm, professor and chairman of cardiology, pulmonology and vascular medicine at the University Hospital Aachen in Germany, “The take-home message of the study is not that people with diabetes should guzzle cocoa but, rather, that dietary flavanols hold promise as a way to prevent heart disease.”11

“Patients with Type 2 diabetes can certainly find ways to fit chocolate into a healthy lifestyle, but this study is not about chocolate, and it’s not about urging those with diabetes to eat more chocolate. This research focuses on what’s at the true heart of the discussion on ‘healthy chocolate’ — it’s about cocoa flavanols, the naturally occurring compounds in cocoa.

While more research is needed, our results demonstrate that dietary flavanols might have an important impact as part of a healthy diet in the prevention of cardiovascular complications in diabetic patients.”

Cocoa Benefits Mood

As mentioned, cocoa also contains chemical compounds shown to boost mood. One study,12 published in 2013, found the polyphenols in cocoa (a dark chocolate drink mix) helped reduce anxiety and induce a sense of calm when consumed daily for one month.

Participants received a cocoa drink standardized to contain either 500 milligrams or 250 milligrams of polyphenols, or a placebo drink with no polyphenol content. After 30 days, those receiving the highest dose reported significantly increased calmness and centeredness, compared to the placebo group. Those receiving the lower dose (250 milligrams) did not experience any significant effects.

The Difference Between Healthy and Unhealthy Chocolate

While there’s plenty of science vouching for the health benefits of dark chocolate, it’s important to realize that none of these benefits are transferable to milk chocolate, which is what most people crave. As a general rule, the darker the chocolate, meaning the more cacao it contains, the more flavanols it contains, and this is the primary source of its health benefits.

Milk chocolate, which is low in cacao and high in milk and sugar, has little redeeming value and will only promote insulin resistance and related ailments. Additionally, the standard manufacturing process of milk chocolate destroys about one-quarter to one-half of the available antioxidants, thereby diminishing its benefits even further.

So, while you’d be better off getting your antioxidants from fruits, berries and vegetables, should you decide to indulge in chocolate, I recommend restricting your intake to dark, organic chocolate, which contains the most flavanols, and avoid milk chocolate. Your best option would be raw cacao nibs, which are relatively bitter since they contain no added sugar.

Additionally, consume chocolate in moderation, even the dark kind, and avoid even dark chocolate if you’re struggling with serious disease such as cancer, which feeds on sugars.

How Cocoa Beans Are Transformed Into Chocolate

Last but not least, you may be curious as to how chocolate is made. The International Cocoa Organization offers the following summary of the 14-step process required to turn cacao beans into a mouth-savoring treat:13

Step 1. The cacao beans are cleaned to remove all extraneous material.
Step 2. To bring out the chocolate flavor and color, the beans are roasted. The temperature, time and degree of moisture involved in roasting depend on the type of beans used and the sort of chocolate or product desired.
Step 3. A winnowing machine is used to remove the shells from the beans to leave just the cocoa nibs.
Step 4. The cocoa nibs undergo alkalization, usually with potassium carbonate, to develop the flavor and color.
Step 5. The nibs are then milled to create cocoa liquor (cocoa particles suspended in cocoa butter). The temperature and degree of milling varies according to the type of nib used and the final product being made.
Step 6. Manufacturers generally use more than one type of bean in their products and therefore the different beans have to be blended together to the required formula.
Step 7. The cocoa liquor is pressed to extract the cocoa butter, leaving a solid mass called cocoa presscake. The amount of butter extracted from the liquor is controlled by the manufacturer to produce presscake with different proportions of fat.
Step 8. The processing now takes two different directions: The cocoa butter is used in the manufacture of chocolate, while the cocoa presscake is broken into small pieces to form kibbled presscake, which is then pulverized to form cocoa powder.
Step 9. Cocoa liquor is used to produce chocolate through the addition of cocoa butter. Other ingredients such as sugar, milk, emulsifying agents and cocoa butter equivalents are also added and mixed. The proportions of the different ingredients depend on the type of chocolate being made.
Step 10. The mixture then undergoes a refining process by traveling through a series of rollers until a smooth paste is formed. Refining improves the texture of the chocolate.
Step 11. The next process, conching, further develops flavor and texture. Conching is a kneading or smoothing process. The speed, duration and temperature of the kneading affect the flavor. An alternative to conching is an emulsifying process using a machine that works like an egg beater.
Step 12. The mixture is then tempered or passed through a heating, cooling and reheating process. This prevents discoloration and fat bloom in the product by preventing certain crystalline formations of cocoa butter developing.
Step 13. The mixture is then put into molds or used for enrobing fillings and cooled in a cooling chamber.
Step 14. Lastly, the chocolate is packaged for distribution.

 

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Ageing and inflammation in patients with HIV infection


Summary

Nowadays, HIV+ patients have an expected lifespan that is only slightly shorter than healthy individuals. For this reason, along with the fact that infection can be acquired at a relatively advanced age, the effects of ageing on HIV+ people have begun to be evident. Successful anti-viral treatment is, on one hand, responsible for the development of side effects related to drug toxicity; on the other hand, it is not able to inhibit the onset of several complications caused by persistent immune activation and chronic inflammation. Therefore, patients with a relatively advanced age, i.e. aged more than 50 years, can experience pathologies that affect much older citizens. HIV+ individuals with non-AIDS-related complications can thus come to the attention of clinicians because of the presence of neurocognitive disorders, cardiovascular diseases, metabolic syndrome, bone abnormalities and non-HIV-associated cancers. Chronic inflammation and immune activation, observed typically in elderly people and defined as ‘inflammaging’, can be present in HIV+ patients who experience a type of premature ageing, which affects the quality of life significantly. This relatively new condition is extremely complex, and important factors have been identified as well as the traditional behavioural risk factors, e.g. the toxicity of anti-retroviral treatments and the above-mentioned chronic inflammation leading to a functional decline and a vulnerability to injury or pathologies. Here, we discuss the role of inflammation and immune activation on the most important non-AIDS-related complications of chronic HIV infection, and the contribution of aging per se to this scenario