By Cat, beginning Feb 2018, and ongoing
These notes are from various health documentary videos and websites, as noted for each item. Topics are in alphabetical order. The article was getting too long, so I’ve separated it into four articles. March 2020 update: H-P article was getting too long, so I separated it into two articles for a total of 5 articles.
Resveratrol, Pterostilbene and other stilbenes
I started taking a resveratrol supplement a year or so ago, because I don’t regularly eat food sources of the supplement, and I learned that those foods (such as red grapes) don’t provide very much of the nutrient. But after a few months, I developed a food sensitivity to it. Now I’m learning about pterostilbene from a Mercola sales pitch. From that article:
“Quercetin offers an impressive array of potential health benefits:
- Supports your natural defense against seasonal threats
- Supports lung and bronchial tract health
- Supports the production of new mitochondria in your brain and muscle
- Supports a healthy, normal immune response
- Helps protect cells and tissues against free radical damage
- Supports a normal, healthy histamine release
- Supports an already normal inflammatory response
- Boosts mental performance following extreme physical stress
- Supports healthy cellular aging
- Helps protect against lipid peroxidation in your cells and tissues
- Supports metabolic health”
Pterostilbene has much the same activity as resveratrol, with these added advantages (also from Mercola’s sales pitch:
- “It is dissolvable in fats, which helps it to be better absorbed by your body.
- It has a longer half-life in your blood, which means it has more time to deliver potential benefits.
- It is more biologically active than resveratrol once it’s absorbed.
Like resveratrol, pterostilbene activates genes associated with longevity. Pterostilbene offers a wide range of beneficial effects, especially for your cellular, metabolic and brain health.
Even at low doses, the active form of pterostilbene, trans-pterostilbene, was shown in recent animal studies to support brain health and aging, including memory and learning.”
This is one of my favorite herbs/spices, but it is also the world’s most expensive, so I use it sparingly. For example, my recipe: Chicken Tagine with Preserved Lemons, Moroccan Olives with Saffron-Raisin Quinoa. But it also has amazing health benefits.
- Depression and anxiety
- Sexual dysfunction
- Pancreatic cancer stem cells
- Macular degeneration
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Metabolic syndrome [insulin resistance]
- Weight loss
- Menstrual pain
On how to use this spice (from same article):
“Avoid the powdered form of this spice. Instead, look for the actual threads or whole stigmas. The powders are often diluted with poor quality or less-expensive spices like turmeric.
Steep the threads in hot water or broth for 5 to 20 minutes. This releases the saffron’s essence and aroma. But the threads will continue to release color and flavor for 24 hours. After soaking you can add them to your recipe. “
Sage (the herb):
For the Brain:
From an Lee Euler email (10/30/21); see also his recommended link – a sales pitch for a particular supplement: greenvalleynaturalsolutions.com/trial/ABP/Advanced_Brain_Power-1.php.
In his email, he states, “There’s an incredible herb that can literally reverse memory loss in only one hour. Seriously: It acts that fast. It’s been around for hundreds of years. …’sage’.” He recommends a potent sage extract to keep your brain younger (the supplement also contains other ingredients – see below).
“Researchers at The Brain Sciences Institute in Melbourne found that when patients were given sage, they experienced … the following in as little as one hour!
- IMPROVED delayed word recall
- BETTER word recognition
- IMPROVED mental performance”
It works by slashing “peoples’ levels of AC-erase – the mind-killing enzyme –by 53%.” But what is AC-erase? The ‘AC’ is acetyl choline, a “very important neurotransmitter. … You can call it the ‘memory chemical.’ Your brain relies on acetylcholine to make, maintain, and recall memories. Without acetylcholine, you can’t remember your friends, family, or loved ones. You lose everything that makes you ‘you.’ [But it] declines severely as you age. [For example,] a 70-year old has up to 40% less acetylcholine than a 20-year old.
[AC-erase, an enzyme, devours] what little supply of AC you have left. [It] makes your brain vulnerable to amyloid-beta proteins –the sticky proteins found in Alzheimer’s disease that gum up your neurons and interfere with neuron communication.
[The Melbourne study showed that] sage slashed peoples’ levels of AC-erase – the mind-killing enzyme –by 53%.
I won’t take his recommended supplement because it contains magnesium stearate, which forms bio-films in the gut, which can causes issues. Instead, I currently take a sage tincture from Swan Valley Herbs here in Bigfork. I may look into adding some of the other herbs in Lee’s recommended supplement (see the Green Valley link above for the entire list of ingredients in his recommended supplement.) The ones I might try adding to sage are: Skullcap root extract and Sophia japonica bud (for luteolin). I can’t take Resveratrol because I have a food sensitivity to it.
See also: diynatural.com/herbs-for-memory/, which lists the following herbs and fruits that improve memory (see article for more detail):
- Ginkgo leaf and Gotu kola
- Green tea
- Bacopa (an Ayurvedic herb)
The author also to make rosemary-infused sugar, which you can use as you would use plain sugar (just sift out the rosemary before using; or use salt. I note that I do the same with sage leaves and salt.
Scalp Eczema / Seborrheic Dermatitis:
May 2019: Eczema is usually a sign the liver is over-worked, so it sends toxins to be excreted through the skin, resulting in irritation of the skin. This is usually a sign of a food sensitivity or other gut issue. When I was a teenager I had a pretty bad case of seborrheic dermatitis, one form of scalp eczema that is commonly called dandruff. It eventually went away, but now at age 70, it is back, affecting not only my scalp but also my nano-labial folds (area near each side of nose, or crease at each side of the mouth). (See Healthline: Eczema on Scalp or picture #3 on Healthline Pictures for more).
Scalp eczema can occur in people with Parkinson’s. I’m hoping that’s not the case for me (but I do have a tremor in my hands).
See my post: Seborrheic Dermatitis (Scalp and Facial Eczema), and Salicylic Acid Shampoo (for Seborrheic dermatitis – Dandruff) for more.
Most seeds, including grains, should be sprouted or at least soaked overnight before eating, to break down toxic lectins intended to protect the seeds from being eaten, so they can germinate. Also, the seeds in some fruits, especially those in the Nightshade family (tomatoes, eggplant and peppers), should be removed before eating the fruit because they are toxic to humans. While some seeds are safe to eat without sprouting or soaking, I still highly recommend that treatment, as it increases their nutritional value. When soaking them, rinse them 3 – 4 times daily before sprouting. See my article Soaking, Sprouting Nuts & Seeds for more info.
See also Dr. Axe’s article on sprouting (draxe.com/nutrition/sprout/); he includes advice for sprouting small seeds like flax, chia, hemp that tend to get mucilaginous when sprouting.
The following is from Green Med Info (greenmedinfo.com/blog/five-seeds-improve-your-health; read the article for more info, as I only provide a summary here. Also see the article for cited references (in blue text inside square brackets).
Five seeds, in particular, are very important for human health:
- Chia seed is useful in addressing a number of prevalent non-infectious diseases, including high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer. When soaking them, rinse 4-times daily; they should sprout in 2 – 3 days. However, like flax seeds, they get mucilaginous from soaking/sprouting.
- Flaxseed “is a rich source of the plant-based omega-3 fat alpha-linolenic acid … as well as lignans and fiber, all assisting in enhanced health through their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.”[iii] It is useful in treatment of “cardiovascular conditions, breast cancer and other cancers, gastrointestinal problems and hormonal status in menopausal women.” It is best to grind them just before eating, as they are easily oxidized by the heat of grinding. They don’t sprout/soak well because they become gelatinous; thankfully, most people can tolerate them without sprouting.
- Hemp seeds: benefits include:[xiv],[xv]
- nourishing hair, skin and nails to fight dryness and inflammatory conditions such as eczema;
- exhibiting anti-rheumatoid arthritis properties; and
- providing an abundance of fiber, brain-nourishing omega-3s and minerals such as iron, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc.
- Nigela Sativa (Black Cumin Seed). “As a remedy, … its flexible benefits include:
- Reducing insulin resistance and decreasing fasting glucose for Type 2 diabetics[x] — two grams of black seed per day is recommended. 2 grams of seeds/day is recommended. [x]
- Reduces seizure activity for those with epilepsy due to its anti-convulsive action.[xi]
- Lowers blood pressure in mildly-hypertensive individuals; Using 100 – 200 mg of black seed extract twice every day for two months is recommended.[xii]
- Strong antibacterial properties against clinical isolates of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).[xiii]
- Sesame seed “is widely recognized for its healthful effects against cardiovascular disease” … and its “synergistic effect with an anti-diabetic medication.”[xvi] [xvii] For more, see “Sesame Seeds,” below (on this page). See also GMI’s article: benefits of sesame seeds (research articles). When soaking them, rinse 4-times daily; they should sprout in 2 – 3 days.
Sense of Smell
See: “Smell and Taste,” below.
An enzyme from silk worms (used to break down the worm cocoon) has many useful health applications. Selective quotes from article by Dr Michael Murray:
- “Serrapeptase has been used in Europe and Japan for over 50 years with good clinical results demonstrated in published clinical trials. Serrapeptase has more powerful anti-inflammatory actions and has broader pH stability than many other proteolytic enzymes, especially chymotrypsin and trypsin.”
- “Useful in treatment of [inflammatory conditions from] sports injuries, after any surgical procedure, and during flare-ups of rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases.”
- “Particularly beneficial in [treating] fibrocystic breast disease, as well as upper respiratory tract conditions like sinusitis, bronchitis, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease due to its ability to improve the structure and function of the mucus secretions.”
Sesame Seeds: 5 Reasons to Eat Them
Your body cannot access the nutrients in the interior of the whole sesame seed. Therefore, the best way to eat them is to grind them right before using, as their nutrients break-down quickly after grinding. I add 1 Tbsp freshly ground seeds to my daily smoothie (using my Revel spice grinder (photo, right, from Amazon).
From Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/five-reasons-eat-sesame-seeds; see the article for more detail; see also GMI’s impressive health benefits of sesame seeds article.
- Lowers high blood pressure (due to high levels of magnesium in the seeds);
- Reduces inflammation, and helps regulate lipid (fat) metabolism;
- Soothes knee arthritis, by decreasing markers of inflammation and oxidative stress;
- Addresses type-2 diabetes and its deleterious effects (the article cites 5 scientific studies);
- Promotes hormone balance during menopause, as the seeds have a rich source of phytoestrogens.
I’ve had sinus problems since I was a small child. Back then the most common treatment of a sinus headache was aspirin, but once I reached adulthood, I started looking into natural (herbal) treatments for sinus pain and I found one at Swan Valley Herbs: a sinus tincture that contains Usnea, Nettle root, and Butterbur. It is amazing!
Then along came COVID-19, and I got a horrible sinus headache. I’d recently learned that the virus gets into your body via the sinuses; I took a dropper-full of the sinus tincture, hoping it would stop the virus (and also make the headaches go away. The headache did go away after about an hour, but returned that evening, so I took the tincture again. That was the end of the headache but In the next couple days I was depressed and did not want to get out of bed. On day 4, I felt like my normal self again. I do believe the sinus tincture stopped the virus from going deeper in my body.
Here’s more about sinus infections….
Dr Jockers’: Chronic Sinus Congestion: Causes, Symptoms and Support Strategies
(from Dr. Jockers: drjockers.com/sinus-congestion/)
- How sinuses work
- What is Sinus Congestion
- Sinus Congestion Symptoms
- Major Causes of Sinus Congestion
- Natural Support Strategies
- Immune Support Nutrients
- Final Thoughts
Dr Christianson’s New Solutions for Sinusitis
(from Dr A. Christianson: drchristianson.com/new-solutions-for-sinusitis-the-most-common-hidden-infection/).
Chronic sinusitis can involve anaerobic bacteria such as Fusobacterium nucleatum, Pigmented Prevotella spp, Porphyromonas spp, & Peptostreptococcus spp; or aerobic bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis among many others.
Biofilms that are made up of minerals and fluids are created by the bacteria to protect themselves from the immune system, and a good environment for fungi.
Diagnosis of chronic sinusitis must involve at least 2 of the following symptoms:
- Anterior and/or posterior nasal discharge
- Nasal congestion or obstruction
- Pain at the site of your sinuses
- Inability to smell; see www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25833927 for Rosenfeld RM, Piccirillo JF, Chandrasekhar SS, et al. Clinical Practice Guideline (Update): Adult Sinusitis. Otolaryngol Neck Surg. 2015;152(2_suppl):S1-S39. doi:10.1177/0194599815572097.
Of these, I definitely have the last one all the time (for the last 3 – 4 years), and I have the others off and on. Right now I have the nasal discharge, and the sinus pain comes and goes several times throughout the day.
Best not to use antibiotics; instead, their clinic uses natural antimicrobials that won’t harm the good bugs, such as “grapefruit seed extract sprays coupled with biofilm inhibitors, which are very effective at reducing the bacterial load.” They also use desensitization therapy, which involves administering very diluted doses of allergenic compounds (environmental and food sensitivities).
Green Valley’s Herbal Supplement
(from Lee Euler sales pitch: greenvalleynaturalsolutions.com/MSM/My_Sinus_Miracle-A.php)
According to Lee, the supplement’s main ingredients provide 3 different “miracles … that will clear your sinuses in 3 weeks or less:”
- “According to the Infectious Diseases Society of America, 90 to 98% of sinus misery is caused by nasal viruses. The most frequent offender is the cold virus, but the next most common is flu.” It contains an herbal extract from Pelargonium sidoides (African Geranium) that is a powerful anti-virus for the respiratory system. It also contains an elderberry extract that’s been shown to fend off viruses and boost your immune system; elderberries contain a unique type of protein that actually blocks viruses from entering your cells. If the viruses already there, it stops it from spreading.
- Nasal viruses and allergens activate inflammation and swelling; the immune system responds with mucous production to protect from the inflammatory effects. However, the mucous can build up, leading to sinus symptoms. The supplement also contains alpha lipoic acid to break up the mucous build-up and destroy bacterial biofilms.
- It contains quercetin, a powerful, natural anti-inflammatory that eliminates the fungi that found a safe home in your stopped-up sinuses.
It also contains vitamin D3 (334 IU).
He doesn’t say how many capsules to take daily, but one bottle contains 90 caps for 30 day-supply, which equates to 3 caps/day. Also, while it will clear your sinuses in 3 weeks or less, if you stop taking it, the sinus buildup will return, so buyer-beware.
Nature’s Best Herbal Remedies for Aging Skin
From GreenMedInfo: greenmedinfo.com/blog/natures-best-remedies-aging-skin; see the article for more detail and references to scientific studies.
- Aloe Vera: While you can rub it on your skin, taking it orally (such as added to fruit juice or smoothies in gel form) can reduce facial wrinkles, per a 2009 study.
- Red Ginseng contains bioactive compounds that include antioxidants and antiaging agents. It’s available in various forms such as tinctures, powders, liquid extracts and capsules.
- Extract form: can greatly improve facial wrinkles, elasticity, water content, red patches and pigmentation.
- Red ginseng cream, applied to human skin, can increase skin resilience and skin moisture as well as enhanced skin tone.
- Soy extract (taken orally) can rejuvenate the structure of mature skin
- Pine bark
- The extract form is safe and effective in substantially improving skin color and decreasing pigmentation of age spots caused by mild to moderate photo-aging.
- Pycnogenol – the trade name for an extract of French maritime pine bark (Pinus pinaster) – significantly increased the activity of an enzyme that’s important in the synthesis of hyaluronic acid, which then increases skin moisture and minimizes the appearance of wrinkles. It also affected genes involved in creating new collagen.
- Is a carotenoid derived from microalgae, was found in studies to mitigate skin photoaging and age-related skin diseases through its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
- It has been found to prevent UV-induced inflammation, wrinkling and skin pigmentation after exposure to ultraviolet radiation, which can cause significant damage to skin tissue.
Top 10 Anti-Aging Ingredients Your Skin Will Love
From Food Revolution email text: “Many of the chemicals widely used in the beauty industry are endocrine disruptors that can wreak havoc on your hormones. And they also may be linked to irregular periods, acne, birth defects, and cancer. But there are 10 ingredients, in particular, that can be good for your skin and your overall health.“
from Food Revolution: foodrevolution.org/blog/clean-skincare-ingredients/ (see article for more detail). These ingredients are applied directly to the skin (some are also edible):
- Camellia Seed Oil (Camellia Oleifera)
- Cocoa Seed Butter (Theobroma Cacao)
- Astaxanthin Extract
- Sunflower Seed Oil (Helianthus Annuus)
- Mango Seed Butter (Mangifera Indica)
- Aloe Vera Juice (Aloe Barbadensis)
- Camu Camu Extract (Myrciaria Dubia)
- German Chamomile Extract (Chamomilla Recutita)
- Indian Gooseberry Extract (Phyllanthus Emblica)
- Maple Leaf Extract (Acer Rubrum, Acer Saccharum, Acer Pennsylvanicum)
Other Ingredients to Keep your Skin Young
The following items (1-7) are from a sales pitch for Glowic; a liquid that is applied directly to the skin:
- Ferulic acid, applied directly to skin, especially if combined with vitamins C and E. Ferulic acid is “a plant-based antioxidant that effectively neutralizes free radicals that could otherwise cause premature aging and sagging of your skin.” [This quote includes the following references:
- Vitamins C and E (tocopherol)
- Vitamin B3 as niacinamide
- Vitamin B5 as panthenol
- Hyaluronic acid
- Sodium PCA [PCA is pyrrolidone carboxylic acid]
See also Mattresses and Beds notes page.
Music to Help you Sleep:
Wholetones: wholetones.com/ltr/jv/319 OOPS; that preview link (from March 2020) is no longer valid (May 2021 update). See their main website for other options: music.wholetones.com/; that page includes an excellent 2:45 min introductory video by Michael Tyrrell about Wholetones. Also check out:
- Michael Tyrrell’s original YouTube intro (3:17 min)to Wholetones
- Wholetones Sample Videos; includes several short, sample musical videos.
- YouTube video (10:43 min)
You can purchase their second generation product: on TTAC’s website (The Truth About Cancer).
Too much sleep increases risk of a stroke
This article caught my attention because I sleep a lot; typically a 30 – 60 min nap in late afternoon, and 10 hours at night (11 PM – 9 AM). This is mainly because I wake up every 2 hours during the night to pee, and then can’t always go right back to sleep. I will try getting up at 8 AM.
From the article, regarding too much sleep:
- “Compared with sleeping seven to eight hours a night, those who slept for nine hours or more had a 23% greater risk of stroke
- Those who took long midday naps of more than 90 minutes also had a greater stroke risk — by 25% — than those who napped for 30 minutes or less
- The greatest risk occurred among those who both slept for nine hours or more at night and napped for more than 90 minutes; this combination increased stroke risk by 85%” …
- “Exercise slashes stroke risk.”
And regarding not enough sleep:
- “Sleeping for less than seven or more than eight hours per night is associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure, a leading risk factor for stroke.”
Food and supplements to help with sleep
Supplements (from Dr Mark Stengler’s sales pitch pro.drmarkstengler.com/p/653SSLD181120A/E653UC36/Full for his supplement, Sleep Dissolves; see also Dr Stengler’s website for more)
If you have trouble falling asleep, take his supplement (or similar products on Amazon, or take the ingredients individually) before going to bed, or anytime during the night. It includes:
- Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxy tryptamine” aka N-5), 3 mg. Astronauts take it. It’s already been featured by Harvard Medical School, Johns Hopkins, and Stanford University, home of the world-renowned Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences.
- 5-HTP, 10 mg, is a recommended complement to N-5.
- L-Theanine, 200 mg; it crosses the blood-brain barrier and stimulates production of GABA, the brain’s “calm” switch.
- Proprietary mix of Passionflower, Chamomile, and Lemon Balm.
How to take: either chew the tablet or let it dissolve in your mouth, 15-30 min before bed time.
Cool your bed for better sleep (from Chris Masterjohn, PhD)
- See Mattresses and Beds notes page, or Chris’s blog for the complete article: httchrismasterjohnphd.com/blog/2019/07/15/chili-pad-took-sleep-next-level/
Smell and Taste
I lost my sense of smell in 2016; thankfully I still have my sense of taste. It happened in a weird way: I started noticing a strong, peculiar smell following me everywhere – indoors and outdoors. Then the peculiar smell would change, but still followed me everywhere. This went on through three more changes, and then …. I could no longer smell anything except really strong smells, such as a fire in an electrical cord. But thankfully, I still have my sense of taste, tho it may be weaker than it was.
Restoring Sense of Smell (several articles)
Mercola article: See a great article from Dr. Mercola: Retrain Your Brain How to Smell Again (11/25/21); Note: he removes access to his articles after 24 hours, so I saved a pdf version at: CATSFORK/PDF FILES > Smell-RetrainBrainToSmellAgain_MCL-112521.pdf. Contact me if you would like a copy. Here are his summary notes:
- “Loss of sense of smell, a condition known as anosmia, is a common symptom of COVID-19 and also can be caused by aging, vitamin D deficiency, certain medications, diabetes, certain viral illnesses and many neurological conditions
- The olfactory system is highly responsive to training; in one study, a 12-week smell training session significantly increased the sensitivity to detect odors in those with anosmia
- The basis for smell training is that using a neural pathway, such as that used by your olfactory nerve cells, reinforces and strengthens it
- To try it, all you need is four different fragrances, such as rose, lemon, clove and eucalyptus essential oils
- Actively sniff each scent for about 20 seconds a couple of times a day, such as immediately after waking up and before going to bed; be sure focus your concentration on the scent while you’re sniffing, trying to recall your experience of the scent”
He also includes a note that caught my attention: “Those with vitamin D deficiency are more likely to have a smell impairment, and researchers believe this deficiency may play a significant role in age-related smell and taste impairment. ” [He includes a reference for this text: Nutrients. 2020 Apr; 12(4): 984.]
This caught my attention for two reasons:
- I lost my sense of smell in 2016; thankfully I still have my sense of taste.
- Ever since I was a toddler, I’ve had an allergy to the sun, so have had to avoid the sun at its peak, and reduce my time in the sun before/after its peak. This means I do not get the natural vitamin D created by the rays of the sun on the body’s skin. Instead, I have to take vitamin D3 supplements and sources daily (such as fermented cod liver oil).
Green Med Info article:
This article discusses much the same as the Mercola article. Check it out: greenmedinfo.com/blog/lost-your-sense-smell-6-remedies-anosmia. I’ve saved a copy in HEALTH-NUTIRTION /2-PODCASTS-ARTICLES / GMI ARTICLES > Sense-of-Smell_6 Remedies-to-restore-it.pdf.
Here’s some notes from that article:
- “Options like smell training, alpha-lipoic acid and turmeric may bring back your sense of smell naturally.”
- What causes anosmia? “Anosmia is most often caused by inflammatory and obstructive disorders, which cause 50% – 70% of anosmia cases.”
- “Changes in eating and personal hygiene behaviors are also common among anosmics, including:
- Reduced appreciation of food and drink
- Increased feelings of depression and loneliness
- Reduced appetite
- Exaggerated personal hygiene, such as showering multiple times a day or using excessive amounts of perfume
- Negative effects on relationships with a partner, friends and family.”
- Six Natural Options for Anosmia (see article for details):
- Smell training
- Alpha Lipoic Acid
- Ginkgo Biloba
- Lavender Syrup (or oil)
- Zinc gluconate [Cat’s note: other chelated forms of zinc may also work, but he doesn’t discuss them.]
- Turmeric [Cat’s note: “liposomal form” of turmeric is the best way to take it – for example, scattering fresh turmeric spice on fatty meat before cooking it; or you can take a liposomal turmeric supplement. I do both.]
Yes, I know, this is not really a health topic, other than for the health of the planet.
Solar Tax Credit
If you are interested in adding solar system to save on your home’s or business’s energy, check out this article about “Solar Investment Tax Credit (Solar ITC) Explained,” which was sent to me to be added to The Essentialist (which will be closed down as soon as I get all the interesting articles moved to catsfork.com)
This is about cooking with a solar oven. I was sent an interesting article, hoping I would add it to The EssentiaList. But since I’m closing that down, I decided to add it here, about Solar Ovens.
see Resveratrol, above
Thiamin (Vitamin B1);
(from GreenMedInfo greenmedinfo.com/blog/overlooked-vitamin-improves-autoimmune-disease-and-autonomic-dysfunction): Thiamin is essential for treating autoimmune and autonomic system.
See also my article on the B-vitamin complex.
from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/4-sugar-alternatives-wont-poison-you (can’t open article 9/1/21, so sent email to GMI.
Meanwhile, I have several sugar alternatives for cooking and baking. See my article: Sugar and Other Sweeteners Menu for more.
- The ones to avoid:
- processed white or brown sugar
- Artificial sweeteners such as “Splenda”
- The ones to use – in moderation
- Unprocessed & minimally-refined sugars; this includes dehydrated sugar cane juice (what I call “Rapadura” because that’s the first brand I used), and other natural sugars such as those from the coconut.
- Other natural sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, molasses, malted barley, sorghum, sweet dairy whey
- Natural Non-sugar Sweeteners (about) such as stevia (which is what I mostly use for baked goodies).
This is a problem I’ve had most, if not all, of my life. I love French onion soup, but it would make me sick to my stomach. Chicken with 40 cloves of garlic did the same. The entire onion family contains a fair amount of sulfur. Thankfully, my acupuncturist who also practices NAET for allergies/sensitivities, was able to clear that. Then came supplements like alpha lipoic acid (ALA) and N-acetyl cysteine (NAC). They contain sulfur and caused trouble in my gut, too. NAET could not clear the problem for more than a day. That is, until I started adding myo-inositol to my daily regimen (for insulin resistance); I can now take a low dose of ALA or NAC several times a day without trouble.
But what is behind this problem with sulfur? Mercola has a great article that explains the problem (articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/10/14/msm-health-benefits.aspx); see his article for the numbered references:
Sulfur Intolerance May Be a Sign of Toxicity
As mentioned earlier, sulfur-rich foods (37) include leafy greens, cruciferous veggies, alliums (38), seafood, grass fed meats and organic pastured eggs. Another excellent source, and perhaps the best one, is homemade bone broth made from organically raised animals.
Either drink the broth regularly, or use it for soups and stews. Connective tissues are sulfur-rich, and when you slow-cook the bones, you dissolve these nutrients out of the bone and into the water.
If you have poor tolerance for foods high in sulfur, it may be an indication of an overgrowth of sulfur-reducing bacteria in your gut. These bacteria, such as Desoulfovibrio and Bilophila wadsworthia, produce hydrogen sulfide gas from sulfur-based food sources, which can destroy the gut lining and cause gastrointestinal discomfort.
A defect in the enzyme that oxidizes sulfur to sulfate, called sulfite oxidase, will lead to an overgrowth of these sulfur-reducing bacteria, and toxic chemical exposures may disrupt sulfite oxidase.
Furthermore, these bacteria also convert mercury to a toxic organic form called methyl mercury. When sulfite oxidase is deficient, mercury cannot be converted to mercury sulfate, which is the nontoxic form of mercury that can be excreted by the body. Thus, disruption of sulfite oxidase results in impaired sulfation capacity and increased mercury toxicity.
Other food additives such as food dyes can also exacerbate problems in your phenol sulfur-transferase (PST) sulfation pathway by suppressing PST enzyme activity. Sulfation is a critical step in detoxification of toxic phenols.
To address this situation, it’s recommended you initially go on a low-sulfur diet and reduce your toxic exposure by eating organic and avoiding household toxins of all kinds.
Ever since I was a toddler, I’ve been allergic to sunshine. As a child, the symptoms were a red hurtful rash, especially on my belly and face; and I had some digestive issues. SoI’ve spent most of my life avoiding sunshine, especially during peak hours of 1 – 3 PM (when the sun is in the middle of the sky). This is especially important for me during the summer months. If I need to work in my garden, I do it in the morning (before noon), or in the early evening (after 5 PM).
But adequate sunshine is very important for overall health, especially of your immune system. The two most important benefits are listed first, in the list below, followed by other important benefits (from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/immunomodulatory-effects-sunlight). See that article for more detail, and for the article’s references to scientific studies:
- Increased Levels of Vitamin D: “A deficiency of this important vitamin is linked to an increased risk of cancer, heart disease, obesity, depression, cognitive impairment, and bacterial and viral infections.” I take vitamin D3 (since it is naturally made from the sun’s UVB radiation acting on cholesterol in the skin).
- Energization of Infection-Fighting T-Cells: “Sunlight, particularly blue light and UV light contained in solar rays, energizes T-cells by triggering the production of hydrogen peroxide in these cells, which enhances their motility in the skin and improves their infection-fighting capabilities. .. Researchers theorize that the photosensitivity of T-cells may help to explain sunlight’s positive effect on immune function and suggest blue-light therapy as a possible therapy for immuno-compromised patients.“
- Heals Skin Disorders such as “eczema, psoriasis, acne and pityriasis rosea;“
- Improves Melatonin Production, to trigger “your body’s circadian rhythms and improving quality of sleep. Melatonin also plays a key role in inflammation and infection and suppresses UVR-induced skin damage.”
- May Improve Weight Loss, [or at least] reduce weight gain…, perhaps by reducing certain aspects of metabolic dysfunction.”
- Provides Emotional Health Benefits, for example, “In various studies, participants with depression and seasonal affective disorder experienced improved moods after sunlight therapy.“
- High Levels of Vitamin D Improve Cognitive Function: by its “protective effect … on brain cells, … an increased production of serotonin and melatonin, and improved circadian rhythms.”
Best Timing for Taking Supplements
From Mercola article: User’s Guide for Timing of Nutritional Supplements, saved as a pdf: HEALTH-NUTRITION / PODCASTS / MERCOLA ARTICLES > NutritionalSupplementTiming_020622.pdf.
In the lists below, italic text is from Mercola’s article. In addition to discussing when to take various supplements, the article also discusses “Do you really need to take all the supplements you are taking?“
Vitamins & Minerals:
- Both B vitamins and nonliposomal vitamin C may cause stomach upset and nausea when taken on an empty stomach; I take them toward the end of my morning smoothie.
- Fat-soluble vitamins will do you little good unless you take them with a small amount of fat, such as an egg or half an avocado; for example, fat-soluble vitamin K2 is best taken with your largest meal that contains fat. I take K2 with my morning smoothie.
- Zinc should not be taken with a calcium and/or iron supplement, as these may hinder your body’s absorption of zinc. I take a zinc/copper supplement with my morning smoothie.
- Iron is also best taken on an empty stomach, either in the midmorning or midafternoon. Also, avoid taking calcium or vitamin E with iron, as these nutrients interfere with iron absorption. I don’t take iron (other than what is in my multi). I take vitamin E with my lunch.
- Magnesium is best taken in the evening, with or without food. I take magnesium as an 80% mag chloride solution 3-times daily: before breakfast, mid-day, and before bed.
- B12 (cobalamin) is poorly absorbed and best taken on an empty stomach. I take a capsule in morning before breakfast. However, Mercola said it is better absorbed if taken in sublingual form (under the tongue); I will try that (Amazon code: B08BJ9L3XR).
Fats and Fiber supplements:
- Fiber may inhibit your body’s absorption of fat, so most fiber supplements, including “green” supplements like powdered spirulina and kelp, are best taken separately from any fatty acid supplements.
- Omega-3 supplements such as fish or krill oil should NOT be taken before a work-out. Consider taking them with breakfast, along with any multivitamin you may be taking. I add fermented cod liver oil (liquid) to my smoothie, and take krill oil with breakfast.
Enzymes and Probiotics
- Enzymes such as bromelain, papain, trypsin and others are used not only as digestive aids, but also for enhancing muscle recovery and decreasing inflammation. Depending on your aim, you’ll need to alter the timing. When taken with a meal, they will improve your digestion. For muscle enhancement and/or anti-inflammatory effects, you’ll want to take them on an empty stomach post-workout, either in the morning or afternoon. I take enzyme supplement with breakfast and lunch.
- Probiotics help improve your gut microbiome by supplying beneficial bacteria. They are best taken on an empty stomach, two to three hours before your first meal, or after your final meal for the day. I take traditional probiotic (not spore form) in afternoon (midway between lunch and dinner). I take spore-based probiotic “Terraflora” per instructions on the bottle: “with a meal” (breakfast) because it also contains fulvic/humic acids.
- As a general rule, antioxidant supplements such as resveratrol, astaxanthin, vitamin E and ubiquinol (the reduced version of Coenzyme Q10) are fat-soluble and best taken with a fatty meal. Ubiquinol is best taken in divided doses with a fatty meal, while vitamin E and astaxanthin can be taken once a day with a fatty meal to increase absorption. I take vitamin E (mixed tocopherols/tocotrienols with lunch. I currently am not taking astaxanthin, and I have a food sensitivity to resveratrol.
Do you really need all the supplements you are taking?
The better and more wholesome your diet, the fewer supplements you will need. Eating real food, ideally organically grown to avoid pesticide exposure, is really the most appropriate way to ensure you’re getting all the nutrients your body needs.
I do take a lot of supplements, many of which are recommended by my naturopath.
See “Smell and Taste” section above, for info about losing sense of taste or smell.
Teas and Diabetics
Best Teas to Try for Diabetes, from Healthline: healthline.com/nutrition/tea-for-diabetics#best-teas
- Green Tea “may help reduce cellular damage, decrease inflammation, and optimize blood sugar control;”
- Black Tea has “anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and blood-sugar-lowering properties;”
- Hibiscus Tea “may help those with diabetes control their blood pressure levels;”
- Cinnamon tea may “help reduce their blood sugar levels, … 3.5 ounces (100 mL) of cinnamon tea before ingesting a sugar solution led to decreased blood sugar levels, … taking 6 grams of a cinnamon supplement daily for 40 days significantly decreased pre-meal glucose levels in healthy adults.”
- Turmeric Tea: Its main ingredient, “curcumin, has blood-sugar-lowering properties; … may promote healthy blood sugar levels by improving insulin sensitivity and increasing glucose uptake in tissues; … is associated with significantly reduced blood sugar and blood lipid levels; and may help reduce cellular damage, decrease levels of pro-inflammatory compounds, and improve kidney function.”
- Lemon Balm Tea may “help stimulate glucose uptake and inhibit glucose synthesis in the body, leading to decreases in blood sugar levels;”
- Chamomile Tea promotes healthy blood sugar regulation; …[such as] significant reductions in HbA1c and insulin levels.”
Green, Black or Oolong Tea and the Brain
see Green Med Info: Nature’s Neuroprotective Beverage: greenmedinfo.health/blog/natures-neuroprotective-herbal-beverage-hundreds-side-benefits); see also news.nus.edu.sg/research/drinking-tea-improves-brain-health.
A new study conducted by the National University of Singapore (NUS), evaluated brain imaging data of senior subjects. The researchers sought to add to the existing literature linking green tea consumption to improved brain function and found that regular tea drinkers had better organized brain regions – an established factor in healthy cognitive function – compared to non-tea drinkers.
The NUS team, along with collaborators from the University of Essex and University of Cambridge, collected data on the health and lifestyles of 36 adults ages 60 and above. The elderly subjects also participated in neuropsychological tests and MRI during the study, which ran from 2015 to 2018.
The results: those who consumed green tea, black tea, or oolong tea at least four times weekly for around 25 years had their brain regions interconnected more efficiently.
move these to separate article
Thyroid Health: Proper Balance of Important Nutrients is Necessary
from Green Med Info, an article by Kelly Brogan MD (greenmedinfo.health/blog/do-synthetic-thyroid-hormones-work.
Most people know how important iodine is to proper functioning of the thyroid, but it is not the only important mineral; plus certain vitamins also play a role, as well as the adrenal hormone, cortisol. From the article (note, her reference ‘9’ is included below the quote):
The [thyroid] gland produces a range of hormones, but its two most active substances are T3, the active form of thyroid hormone, and T4, the storage form of thyroid hormone. A healthy thyroid regularly secretes T3 and T4 into the bloodstream so that most of the T4 can be converted into its active form, T3, around the body, including the brain.9 To do that, the process depends on a wide variety of factors: the amount of available specialized enzymes, optimal cortisol (your stress hormone) levels, and certain nutrients such as iron, iodine, zinc, magnesium, selenium, B vitamins, vitamin C, and vitamin D.
Reference 9: physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/physrev.00009.2005
See also Cat’s articles on these minerals and vitamins listed on Diet & Health Menu.
Thyroid and Essential Minerals
This information is from a sales pitch (completethyroid.com/sales/thyroid/metabolism-overdrive/v5/exclusive/) for Millie Perlata’s supplement to support your thyroid. She sites the research by Dr. Dale Sterling, which includes the CAR method of improving thyroid function and metabolism. Or see Daily Wellness Pro (dailywellnesspro.com/complete-thyroid/2418/) for a shorter version.
Unfortunately, none of these include the “Supplement Facts” on the label, to determine the amount and the form of each of the nutrients. So until that information is made available, I do not recommend this supplement. See below for 2 other similar supplements, and a comparison with those nutrients in Mercola’s Whole Food Multi (which I take).
My notes from the sales pitch:
CAR stands for a 3-step process:
- Create thyroid hormones, which requires iodine from kelp and Bladderwrack (types of seaweed). Iodine is the important mineral in the structure of thyroid hormones T3 and T4, which are the batteries.
- Activate Thyroid Hormones, which requires the minerals selenium,* magnesium, and zinc.* These activate the thyroid hormones, as in “charging the batteries.”
- Release Thyroid Hormones, which requires the minerals copper* and manganese.* These release the activated hormones into your bloodstream, so they can reach all of your cells, and regulate your metabolism.
Dr Sterling the identified 6 additional support nutrients that will put your thyroid into optimal condition fast, including:
- “Tyrosine: A crucial amino acid that combines with iodine to create healthy levels of the T3 and T4 hormones. Without it – your thyroid couldn’t process iodine.
- Ashwagandha Powder: An ancient antioxidant that has been shown to enhance conversion of T3 and T4 into the active form your metabolism needs.[xi]
- Vitamin B12: A crucial “energy” vitamin that 40% of those with thyroid issues are deficient in.[xii]
- Cayenne Pepper Extract, which is known to dramatically improve circulation, allowing T3 and T4 hormones to regulate metabolism more efficiently.
- Schizandra Powder: A powerful antioxidant herb that’s been found to heal damaged cells, lower blood pressure, and significantly improve liver health.[xiii]
- Molybdenum:* [Another mineral that is an essential part of] an enzyme that can assist in metabolic healing. This is essential for regulating healthy levels of nutrients in the bloodstream as well.”
He combines all of these minerals (including seaweeds that contain iodine) and other nutrients in a supplement: Complete Thyroid with Iodine, by Science Natural. He recommends 2 capsules/day for at least 30 days. It normally retails for $149/bottle, but his article includes a special offer of $70 per bottle (or less if you buy a 3- or 6-month supply).
‘*Cat’s note: these heavy metal minerals are only safe when they are chelated – bound by the structure of an amino acid, peptide, or protein. When they are instead in “salt” form – such as sodium selenite or copper sulfate, they are toxic heavy metals and can do significant damage in your body.
Two related supplements are available on Amazon:
Note: both of these have two of the minerals, zinc and copper, as “oxide” which is a salt rather than chelated form; for this reason, I do not recommend either of them, despite the significantly lower cost, but you can get an idea of how much of each nutrient is needed. I also list a comparison with Mercola’s whole Food Multi of which I take a full daily dose.
- Thyroid Support Supplement with Iodine, by Precision Naturals (ASIN B01MS62M5F). Contains 60 capsules; recommended dose is 2 capsules per day, so lasts 30 days/jar. the Supplement facts are displayed in a photo of the label, but is hard to read. It appears to contain all the same nutrients, and most if not all of the minerals are in chelated form.
- Thyroid Support by Navasana (ASIN B07F5N33S5), contains 120 capsules; recommended dose is 2 capsules/day, so lasts 60 days. The supplement facts are more readable for this brand; however two of the minerals – zinc and copper – are in oxide (salt) form, rather than chelated, so I don’t recommend this.: For a serving of 2 capsules:
- Vitamin B-12 (not methylated): 100 mcg
- Iodine (kelp, potassium iodide): 150 mcg
- Magnesium (oxide): 200 mg
- Zinc (oxide): 8 mg (this is a salt form – not chelated)
- Selenium (amino acid chelate): 200 mcg
- Copper (oxide): 200 mcg (this is a salt form – not chelated)
- Manganese (amino acid chelate): 2 mg
- Molybenum (amino acid chelate): 50 mcg
- L-Tyrosine: 300 mg
- Schisandra powder (fruit): 240 mg
- Ashwagandha root powder: 200 mg
- Bladderwrack powder (50 mg)
- Cayenne pepper powder (fruit)
- Kelp: 38 mg
I compare these with Mercola’s Whole Food Multi (iHerb code MCL-01035). A full dose (8 tabs/day), which I take, contains the following amounts for the above listed nutrients:
- Vitamin B-12, methylated: 100 mcg
- Iodine (kelp): 200 mcg
- Magnesium (chelate): 200 mg
- Zinc (chelate): 15 mg
- Selenium (chelate): 200 mcg
- Copper (chelate): 0.05 mg/50 mcg)
- Manganese (chelate): 2 mg
- Molybenum (chelate): 100 mcg
- L-Tyrosine: none
- Schisandra powder (fruit): none
- Ashwagandha root powder: none
- Bladderwrack powder: none
- Cayenne pepper powder (fruit): none
- Kelp: iodine is from kelp, but amount of kelp is not listed
- Plus many other nutrients not specific for the thyroid
Thyroid Issues and Kale (and other crucifers)
This is from a Jeff Hays Films newsletter (I’ve modified the formatting):
“Stay clear of [Raw] Kale: If you have thyroid issues
One of the compounds in raw kale is called progoitrin. [It] BLOCKS your thyroid from working right (it stops it from absorbing iodine). Which can lead to serious health complications.
In one case, an 88 year old woman fell into a coma after eating too much!
Now to be clear, she was eating the equivalent of 3 POUNDS of kale a day.
But if you have existing thyroid issues, it may be better to just steer clear of kale altogether (at least raw).”
I seldom eat kale, broccoli and chard raw; my preference is to braise them lightly. See my posts: Basic Braised Greens (About), which includes a couple recipes.
I have a shaking in my hands that began when I was a child. They only started to shake when I wanted to use my hands, such as to draw or write. My first grade teacher once said to me as she strolled past our tables while we were making drawings, “How can you draw such a nice, straight line when your hands shake so much?” I had no idea, but I will never forget that question. I just always took my shaking hands for granted, whenever I tried to do something with my hands. Now 60+ years later, my shaking has worsened, especially for my left (weaker) hand. It mostly shakes only when I try to use it, not when it is at rest, although as I get older, both hands vibrate a bit when at rest. It also is worsened when my blood sugar is low.
This evening (2/22/20) I watched Katharine Hepburn’s last film, “Love Story” (1994). Over the years, her tremor progressively got worse. I wondered what caused it; I did a bit of research on the internet, and found out she was diagnosed with “Essential Tremor.” That could be my issue, I thought to myself and looked it up. Yes, I think that’s it. And here’s an article about several natural treatments for this condition: healthandlovepage.com/10-natural-remedies-for-essential-tremor-in-hands/ Here’s the 10 (I’ve rearranged them by category):
- Using a stress ball (exercise)
- Yoga (exercise)
- Chamomile (herb, tea)
- Corydalis (herb)
- Kava kava (herb)
- Lavender (herb, essential oil)
- Passionflower (herb)
- Skull cap (herb)
- Valerian (herb)
- Omega-3 fatty acids (diet)
Triphala (Ayurvedic Herbal Supplement)
The following is from an article by Dr. Axe: Triphala: An Ayurvedic Herbal Formulation that Fights Cancer & Constipation, unless noted otherwise. I’ve been using supplements containing triphala for over 20 years, and I’m convinced it is why I am so healthy at age 74.
From Dr. Axe, “It’s a traditional herbal formulation made from the dried powder of three different fruits [amla, haritaki and bibhitaki]. … [It]contains the strong antioxidants]: gallic acid, ellagic acid and chebulinic acid, … [and] also has flavonoids and polyphenols, which have antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antidiarrheal abilities. … It contains 5 of the 6 tastes recognized in Ayurveda (sweet, sour, bitter, and astringent). It’s only missing the salty taste.”
How to take:
- [It] is usually taken on an empty stomach, … as a tea by adding a half-teaspoon of powder to a cup of hot water, stir well and wait for it to cool. … or combine the powder with honey or ghee before a meal.”
- To improve digestion and help with cleansing the gut, … “as a digestive tonic, it is best taken in the evening, about two hours after eating and at least 30 minutes before bedtime.”
[Cat’s 7/22/19 note: I’ve been adding it to my morning smoothie, as part of Tri-Cleanse powder, but I may change that to take it in the evening as a digestive tonic, especially during the 5-day juice fast I intend to start soon.]
Five major health benefits:
- “Cancer fighter,
- Natural laxative and colon cleanser,
- Weight loss,
- Lower cholesterol [Cat’s Note: I do not consider high cholesterol to be problematic; however, when it forms plaque, that is a sign that you are over-exposed to free-radicals that cause inflammation of the arterial lining. I believe triphala’s anti-inflammatory action is what is important here.]
- Anti-inflammatory and arthritis helper.”
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Alzheimers/Parkinson’s:
Ways to lessen risk:
- Get adequate Omega-3s (DHA and EPA); Mercola recommends krill oil;
- Treatment aids: Curcumin, CBD oil, hyperbaric oxygen, low laser light therapy, pulsed electromagnetic field therapy, transcranial direct-current stimulation, electroencephalography and neurofeedback.
Both ginger and turmeric (related species) have amazing health benefits. See Individual Herbs & Spices, G – Z for more about Turmeric and Ginger, and my recipe for Ginger Tea. See also Ginger & Turmeric Latte and Golden Milk (Turmeric Tea): Several Recipes for great recipes to enjoy the benefits of both turmeric and ginger.
Benefits, and How Best to Consume Turmeric
Benefits of Turmeric, according to customary Ayurvedic practice, turmeric:
- Maintains gut flora and protects against stomach disorders. It’s also a natural antiseptic and is useful for disinfecting cuts, burns, wounds, and other skin infections.
- Detoxes the liver. Curcumin (a primary compound of turmeric root) has been found to increase the flow of bile, which is necessary for breaking down dietary fat during digestion.
- Can help to manage blood sugar.
- Treating arthritis inflammation and pain.
- May prevent or help heal cancer.
How best to consume Turmeric:
- Because it is fat- rather than water-soluble, liposomal turmeric is the best way to consume it. See “Liposomal Turmeric” section below, for more, and an explanation for what “liposomal” means.
- “Consume it in a meal cooked with a high-quality fat source such as extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil.”
- Take it supplementally with supplemental sunflower seed oil.
Green Med Info explained in a recent email, why using liposomal turmeric is a better form when taken supplementally. GMI recommends PuraThrive’s Liposomal Turmeric (purathrive.com/green-med/turmeric/?AFFID=386023). Note there are other brands available, too, such as Mary Ruth’s (Amazon code B08FXXQB9F).
From the above link (by GMI):
“Enzymes in the mouth and stomach, digestive juices, bile salts (to neutralize the digestive acids), and various flora in the intestines can break-down and degrade the supplement.
Like microscopic bodyguards, the Micelle Liposomal delivery system grabs hold of the nutrients (in this case Turmeric), protecting them as they travel through your digestive system, into your bloodstream and into your cells where they are needed…unharmed.”
To liposomalize ginger and/or turmeric in your gut:
Per medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/liposomal, a liposome is “a microscopic spherical particle formed by a lipid bilayer enclosing an aqueous compartment.” Or per Wikipedia: “A liposome is a spherical vesicle having at least one lipid bilayer. … Liposomes are most often composed of phospholipids, especially phosphatidylcholine.”
But what is a lipid? Per Wikipedia, it is “micro biomolecule that is soluble in nonpolar solvents,” such as oils [and is not soluble in polar solvents such as water].
So, if you take turmeric or ginger with a good oil like coconut or sunflower seed oils, it will form a liposome as the combo moves through your digestive system, making the turmeric/ginger more absorbable.
“The following combo forms liposomes around ginger/turmeric, once the mix gets to your gut, making the spices more useful and effective in the body. To make the mix even more effective, add some black pepper (for piperine, aka bioperine).
- start with coconut milk or fresh whole milk to the turmeric and/or ginger (dried, ground spice, or chopped fresh rhizome);
- then add coconut oil or ghee,
- mix well in a blender or by hand to help liposomalize the ginger and turmeric.
Another great way to liposmalize ginger/turmeric is to drink Golden Milk (aka Golden Tea); that link on this site provides several different recipes. I like to drink this before bed.
Or you can take liposomal turmeric or ginger as a supplement in softgel form. I’m currently trying SR Brand (Sports Research; see Amazon code B00A39MPNI), which contains turmeric and black pepper extracts, plus Organic Virgin Coconut oil and Organic yellow beeswax, all combined in a softgel. It is really helping with the pain from arthritis in my knees. Note there are several other brands of liposomal turmeric available as well.
(see also my printable pdf: Turmeric-Liposomal.pdf)
Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)
UTI includes “upper urinary tract, including the kidneys, or lower urinary tract, involving the bladder.” Infections in the lower tract are more common, especially for women.
How to avoid UTIs: See Mercola article about UTIs: primary cause is E-coli from CAFO chickens, especially in post-menopausal women; also discusses how to avoid the UTIs (take D-mannose). “American, Canadian and European studies have all confirmed close genetic matches between drug-resistant E. coli collected from human patients and those found on poultry”
I can attest to this; I add 1/2 tsp D-mannose powder (iHerb code NOW-02809) to my morning smoothie every day; it has also helped my neighbor get rid of a bad UTI.
Nature’s Best UTI Fighters
From Green Med Info, with Cat’s notes in square brackets […]. See the article for its cited references.
- Increase your water intake, preferably filtered water. When you have no UTI infection drink at least 4 – 6 cups of water per day. If you suspect an infection, increase that amount.
- Consume real cranberries. [They are quite tart; you can sweeten them a bit with stevia, or by combining them with a sweeter fruit such as blueberries.] The article also suggests turning them into a natural juice beverage [such as putting them in a blender] or adding them to a smoothie. [However, as with all fruits, turning them into juice is not the best option. Instead, I add D-mannose powder to my smoothie (along with a small handful of cranberries), as that is the ingredient in cranberries that helps the UTI to heal. I also add part of an orange, including the pith and peel to my smoothie.]
- Eat more garlic, as it has even proven effective against E. coli, the bacteria most often associated with UTIs.
- Supplement with grapefruit seed extract. It may even be more effective at treating antibiotic resistant UTI than other treatments.
- Boost vitamin C, especially oranges, grapefruit and leafy-green vegetables. You can also add Vitamin C supplements to your daily regimen. “One of vitamin C’s functional mechanisms is making urine more acidic, which helps prevent bacteria from growing in the urethra. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) supplements taken at a dose of 100 milligrams (mg) daily has been clinically shown to significantly reduce the frequency of UTIs among pregnant women, a population group that is especially susceptible to this type of infection.”
Grapefruit seed extract (GSE) effective against antibiotic-resistant UTIs. See Green Med Info article about antibiotic-resistant UTIs (by Sayer Ji). He discusses how grapefruit seeds can help, including a small scientific study. Also check out Green Med Info’s Urinary Tract Infection database for over 20 natural substances that show promise as anti-urinary tract infection agents.
Sayer Ji notes that grapefruit seed extract is also effective against other antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including MRSA. The grapefruit seed extract also has anti-fungal ability (candida, etc.).
from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.health/blog/valerian-everything-you-knew-and-everything-you-didnt
This herb from Europe and Asia is historically known for helping with insomnia. But it has many other benefits as listed below. The article also includes references to scientific studies that support the benefit.
- Insomnia & Menopause
- Painful Periods
- Social Stress
The article also discusses combining valerian with other herbs to improve the benefits: hops, passion flower, and lemon balm.
Vegetable Oils (Corn, Canola, Soy, etc.): the Harm they Do
from Mercola article: articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/10/31/vegetable-oil-omega-6.aspx
- In recent years, it’s become increasingly clear that one of the most damaging components in our modern diet is processed vegetable oils, as they contain excessive amounts of oxidized omega-6 linoleic acid, a polyunsaturated fat (PUFA). The biological damage they cause is even worse than that caused by refined sugar and high fructose corn syrup.
- Virtually all chronic metabolic and degenerative diseases, including age-related macular degeneration, are primarily caused by a preponderance of industrial vegetable oils in the diet.
- Vegetable oils degrade to extremely toxic oxidation products when heated, including cyclic, which contribute to the development of heart disease and neurodegenerative diseases.
See Dr Carol Foster’s You Tube video (youtube.com/watch?v=mQR6b7CAiqk) for an easy treatment for vertigo (3½ minutes). It includes a great explanation of how the crystals in the inner ear can cause vertigo. You can also find it if you search: “Carol Foster MD vertigo treatment Oct 11” in your search engine. It involves kneeling down on your knees and moving your head in a specific way, depending on whether the problem is in the left or right ear (or if both sides, you do both versions). I learned about this from a new Vietnamese friend who is visiting Montana.
A similar treatment is the Epley movement, that involves laying horizontal on the floor (it is hard and painful for me to get up from the floor, so I do this one laying on my bed with a hard mattress; I learned from Dr Tim Gibbs). See .youtube.com/watch?v=9SLm76jQg3g (2½ minutes).
Walnuts and Telomere Length for Longevity
See Green Med info for a great article on this benefit of walnuts; here’s a quote (for references as (*), see the article for cited references):
“In humans, leukocyte telomere length (LTL) is positively correlated with lifespan, while shorter LTL is associated with an increased risk of age-related disease. (*) Telomere length, or LTL, is therefore considered a reliable biomarker of aging.
Walnuts are an excellent source of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), a type of essential fatty acid that is known to have beneficial effects on the heart. (*) Prior studies have been conducted on the effects of PUFA consumption on telomere length, however the fatty acids were derived from fish oils, a source that is less sustainable than tree nuts. (*)
Walnuts are a vegan source of PUFA containing the highest amount of alpha-linolenic acid (*) and a rich matrix of antioxidants, namely polyphenols and vitamin E, which have also been related to maintained leukocyte telomere length when included in the diet. (*)”
From Food Revolution, about the benefits of watermelon (see article for more detail):
- “watermelons have a high water content, which helps keep you hydrated. They’re also high in vitamins A and C, potassium, and carotenoids. In particular, watermelons are high in the antioxidant-rich carotenoid lycopene, which gives the flesh its pinkish-red color.“
- They are high in natural sugars, but “because they’re [also] so high in water, they still turn out to be low on the glycemic load scale. This means that despite their sweetness, they likely won’t spike your blood sugar when you eat them.”
- They may:
- Help you lose weight;
- Protect against heart disease;
- Have anti-cancer properties;
- Treat ulcerative colitis;
- Be good for your skin;
- Help support athletic performance.
The article also provides info on:
- Downsides to eating watermelon;
- How to choose a ripe watermelon;
- Best ways to store watermelons;
- Creative ways to enjoy watermelon.
With cyclic keto plan:
How to activate your Metabolically Active Tissue (M.A.T.) to burn more fat, by Johnny Bowden (see transcript of video (not a pdf, but rather multiple online pages).
This is basically a cyclic keto plan (high-fat on 3 – 4 days; high-carb on other days during a week, to increase levels of the hormone IGF-1 (youth hormone) to burn more body fat. Links:
- Page 1: metabolicfactor.com/p/cvr/transcript1/906749;
- page 2: metabolicfactor.com/p/cvr/transcript2;
- page 3: metabolicfactor.com/p/cvr/transcript3 ;
- page 4: metabolicfactor.com/p/cvr/transcript4 (to purchase his books and other benefits).
see also: Lectins (above)
Natural Obesity Agents
from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/maintain-healthy-weight-these-natural-antiobesity-agents, six nutritional agents to help with weight loss. The referenced GMI articles (1 – 6c) are listed by the same numbers below the list.
- Cinnamon “A systematic review and meta-analysis of cinnamon’s effect on body weight, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), waist-hip ratio (WHR) and body fat mass. The review encompassed 1,480 participants from 21 randomized, controlled trials and found that cinnamon consumption significantly reduces BMI, body weight and WHR” (1). [Cat’s note: there are two common types of cinnamon – cassia and Ceylon, both of which help with weight loss; however, cassia can be quite toxic at larger doses so I take Ceylon cinnamon to help with insulin resistance and other weight issues].
- Cocoa / Dark Chocolate: “A 2018 review and meta-analysis on cocoa supplementation found that dark chocolate reduces body weight, BMI and waist circumference.” See another GMI article (2) for more about this.
- Citrus and citrus extracts; for example: replace a bacon-and-eggs breakfast with half a grapefruit (preferably Organic), because “citrus fruits have been scientifically linked to fat-burning.” (3) Better yet, use a citrus extract because it is even more effective, according to another study cited by GMI.
- Green coffee extract (extracted from green coffee beans before roasting). “To gain maximum benefit, supplementation periods of at least four weeks are indicated.” (4)
- Soup: “Incredibly, all 1,873 scientific articles and 7 cross-sectional studies in a review on soup consumption and obesity … indicated a significant inverse correlation between soup consumption and obesity.” (5)
- Spirulina (a blue-green algae). “To effect optimal weight loss and keep it off, any supplementation regimen should be combined with dietary adjustments such as fasting or limiting overall caloric consumption and avoiding foods with excess sugar.” (See GMI articles 6a, 6b, and 6c for more on this.
Referenced GMI articles from above:
- (1) greenmedinfo.com/article/cinnamon-supplementation-significantly-reduces-body-weight
- (2) greenmedinfo.com/article/cocoa-and-dark-chocolate-supplementation-reduced-body-weight-body-mass-index-a
- (3) greenmedinfo.com/article/dietary-citrus-and-its-extracts-intake-contributed-weight-control
- (4) greenmedinfo.com/article/green-coffee-extract-provides-cost-effective-and-safe-alternative-treatment-ob
- (5) greenmedinfo.com/article/soup-consumption-significantly-related-lower-odds-ratio-obesity
- (6a) greenmedinfo.com/therapeutic-action/fastingcaloric-restriction
- (6b) greenmedinfo.com/article/spirulina-supplementation-significantly-reduces-body-weight-especially-obese-i
- (6c) greenmedinfo.com/therapeutic-action/fastingcaloric-restriction
Cumin (spice) or curcumin supplement for weight loss:
From Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.health/blog/overweight-cumin-spice-works-better-obesity-drugs. This article discusses two scientific studies that compares using cumin vs weight-loss drug, and how cumin works to assist in weight loss.
Cat’s note: Milk contains two major proteins: casein and whey. The best source is raw milk, because the heat treatment of pasteurization, and especially ultra-pasteurization denatures these proteins. Denaturing means that the 3-dimensional structure of the protein changes to a form the consuming body does not recognize as “self;” that is, the immune system is put on alert, causing sensitivity and/or allergic reaction. Fermentation cause the whey to separate from the fermented milk product (such as cheese, yogurt or buttermilk), but it does not denature the whey.
Most commercial whey protein powders are from heat-treated milk (pasteurized or ultra-pasteurized), and as such are not as good for you as whey protein powder from raw milk.
Whey Protein for Prevention of Muscle Loss (Sarcopenia)
Whey protein from raw milk of grass-fed cows contains two important nutrients: leucine (amino acid) and glutathione (peptide, a short chain protein). Note that whey protein from heat-treated milk has been denatured and does not provide the same benefits. Mercola also suggests avoiding “whey protein isolate,” which has been separated from the supportive fats.
In his article section: Guidelines for buying High-Quality Whey, he emphasizes that the best source of whey is that produced from making raw milk cheese, because it contains GMP (glycomacropeptides). “Whey protein has been shown to stimulate muscle protein accretion and stave off sarcopenia the best, in part due to its higher leucine content, which helps regulate the turnover of protein in your muscle.”
- “Whey protein also contains the master antioxidant glutathione. Glutathione is thought to play an important role in sarcopenia specifically, as patients with sarcopenia tend to have higher levels of oxidative stress.”
The article also discusses BFR (Blood Flow Restriction Training) for prevention of muscle wasting (muscle loss).
see Mitochondrial/Cellular Health, above
Zinc is an essential mineral, but zinc supplements are not readily absorbed unless the zinc is chelated, such as “zinc picolinate or zinc glycinate.” Certain whole foods are also excellent sources of zinc. The following is from Green Med Info (the links in the quote are also from GMI):
“Proteins like pastured beef and poultry, and sustainably harvested, wild-caught fish and oysters are all good sources of this essential mineral. Vegetarian sources include organic cereals, beans, nuts, oats and tofu.”
To get maximum benefit of zinc, you should take it with copper in a proper ratio, 15:2 (e.g., 15 mg zinc: 2 mg copper. Similarly, to get maximum benefit of copper, you should take it with zinc in the same proper ratio. Note that like zinc, copper is not readily absorbed unless it is chelated, such as “copper bisglycinate.”
For more about zinc-to-copper ratio, and about these minerals in general, see: my article: Minerals (About).
[I currently take 1 capsule of Mercola’s supplement: “Zinc plus Selenium” (see iHerb MCL-03152) which contains: 15 mg Zinc (as Zinc Bisglycinate Chelate), 200 mg Selenium (from selenium yeast), and 0.25 mg Copper (as Copper Bisglycinate Chelate).
Plus I take 1 capsule of Thorne’s Copper Bisglycinate, 2 mg/capsule to maintain a 15:2 zinc-copper ratio.]
Mercola has a great article about zinc and related minerals: The Secret of Zinc’s Immunity-Boosting Power Revealed I’ve saved as: HEALTH-NUTRITION > PODCASTS-ARTICLES > MERCOLA ARTICLES / ZincImmunityBoostingPowerRevealed_MCL_041622.pdf]. Here’s his story-at-a-glance (notes):
- Zinc has been acknowledged as an essential mineral for human health since the 1970s. More than 300 enzymes in your body require zinc for normal function, and it’s well-recognized for its role in immunity and normal immune system development
- A March 2022 study has now shed new light on how zinc influences immune function. Zinc is required for the development of disease-fighting T cells, and for the regeneration of your thymus, which produces T cells
- A molecule inside your cells called GPR39 acts as a sensor that tracks changes in external zinc, and when the level rises, GPR39 triggers the release of a key renewal factor and thymic regeneration
- Zinc ionophores, which act as a shuttle to transport the zinc into the cell, improves zinc uptake. Zinc ionophores include hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), chloroquine, quercetin and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG)
- Excessive zinc supplementation can cause an imbalance in your zinc-to-copper ratio, which can impair immune function. Copper, in turn, is interdependent on iron
Zinc: 4 Dangerous Warning Signs You’re NOT Getting Enough Zinc (and the 7 forms you should take)
from Jonathan Otto sales pitch for “Zinc 7” supplement: getzinc7.com/z7-zinc-5929-v3-b2.
[Cat’s note: I put these in a different order than in the article. I am not sure all these forms are truly needed, but I do believe the best forms are chelated. I put a * (smaller rings around the zinc) or ** (larger rings around the zinc) beside the chelated forms in the list. I also note that the larger the circle of the chelate around the mineral, the better it is absorbed into the blood. For example, Picolinate makes a larger circle than glycinate.
- Zinc Acetate * – faster recovery from infection [Cat’s note: Acetate has only 2 carbons in the molecule, but 2 molecules attach to the zinc for better chelation.]
- Zinc Glycinate * – for hormones and sex drive [Cat’s note: Glycinate has only 2 carbons in one ring, but if bisglycinate, two glycinate rings attach to the zinc for better chelation.]
- Zinc Methionate ** – higher absorption and synergy [Cat’s note: Methionine or Methionate has 5 carbons for a small ring, but 2 rings attach to the zinc for better chelation.]
- Zinc Orotate ** – for deeper, high-quality sleep [Cat’s note: Orotate has 5 carbons in the ring, but 2 rings bind to the zinc for better chelation.]
- Zinc Ascorbate ** – for colds and immune system protection (is chelated with vitamin C) [Cat’s note: Ascorbate has 6 carbons in the ring, but two rings attach to the zinc, for better chelation.]
- Zinc Citrate (for gums, teeth and dental health) [Cat’s note: Citrate has 6 carbons in the ring, but two rings attach to the zinc, for better chelation.]
- Zinc Picolinate ** – for liver cell health and anti-aging [Cat’s note: Picolinate has 6 carbons in the ring, and two rings attach to the zinc for better chelation.
Zinc Deficiency At-Home Test
See also Minerals (About)
You can do a test at home, to determine if you have zinc deficiency, called “Zinc Tally Test.” (from Dr Jockers). Use zinc sulfate solution (see Amazon ASIN B000UQTEQA, Biotics Research, Aqueous Zinc, $13.90/bottle); see Biotics Research Zinc Taste Test (original pdf which I saved as ZincTasteTest-BioticsResearch (pdf) on Cat’s Kitchen), which recommends 10 ml. 2mg/2 tsp dose, and pay attention to taste:
- Optimal Zn level: An immediate, unpleasant, obviously adverse taste
- Adequate Zn level: A definite but not strongly unpleasant taste noted immediately, and tends to intensify with time.
- Quite Deficient: No taste noted initially, but develops in 10-15 seconds.
- Very Deficient: Tasteless or “tastes like water.”
To resolve a zinc deficiency, Dr Jockers recommends zinc glycinate plus glycine amino acid supplement daily; take with food.
I’ve added this and more info about zinc on my Cat’s Kitchen blog: Zinc deficiency: How to test zinc levels at home.