Monday 31 October 2016

Health Crisis: The Ripple Effect from Environmental Toxins Within the Body!

Neurotransmitters are chemicals in the brain that act as messengers between neurons. The effects of neurotransmitters are far-reaching and encompass most bodily processes, including: physical and cognitive performance, weight, the perception and response to pain, sleep patterns and our emotional and mental state of being. If neurotransmitter chemicals are imbalanced, the entire body is thrown off kilter, and it is estimated that 80 percent of people have some form of neurotransmitter imbalance.

A March 2010 study found that toxin exposure can affect neurotransmitters--even halt their activity. This leads us to wonder: how are we affected?

There is no doubt that human exposure to toxins is on the rise. According to WHO:
"Unintentional poisonings kill an estimated 355,000 people globally each year. In developing countries -- where two thirds of these deaths occur -- such poisonings are associated strongly with excessive exposure to, and inappropriate use of, toxic chemicals. In many such settings, toxic chemicals may be emitted directly into soil, air, and water -- from industrial processes, pulp and paper plants, tanning operations, mining, a nd unsustainable forms of agriculture -- at levels or rates well in excess of those tolerable to human health."

One of the most notorious environmental toxins is RoundUp weed killer. Just last year, WHO declared Monsanto's signature product, RoundUp (or glyphosate), as carcinogenic. However, the tables seemed to turn this year as Roundup/glyphosate was given a clean bill of health by the UN’s joint meeting on pesticides residues (JMPR), just two days before a crunch EU vote on whether to relicense it. Interestingly, later in the year, it was announced that pharma giant Bayer would be purchasing Monsanto. Bayer CEO Werner Baumann said, "This step is entirely logical. The two companies are a perfect fit and complement each other ideally."

Baumann's statement is especially troubling, given that in 2009, Scientific American published a study which found "Roundup’s inert ingredients amplified the toxic effect on human cells [particularly embryonic, placental and umbilical cord cells]--even at concentrations much more diluted than those used on farms and lawns."

Ecowatch published a list of conditions that can be linked to Roundup, which we've included below:
  • ADHD: In farming communities, there’s a strong correlation between Roundup exposure and attention deficit disorder (ADHD), likely due to glyphosate’s capacity to disrupt thyroid hormone functions.
  • Alzheimer’s disease: In the lab, Roundup causes the same type of oxidative stress and neural cell death observed in Alzheimer’s disease. And it affects CaMKII, an enzyme whose dysregulation has also been linked to the disease.
  • Anencephaly (birth defect): An investigation into neural tube defects among babies born to women living within 1,000 meters of pesticide applications showed an association for glyphosate with anencephaly, the absence of a major portion of the brain, skull and scalp that forms during embryonic development.
  • Autism: Glyphosate has a number of known biological effects that align with the known pathologies associated with autism. One of these parallels is the gut dysbiosis observed in autistic children and the toxicity of glyphosate to beneficial bacteria that suppress pathogenic bacteria, along with pathogenic bacteria’s high resistance to glyphosate. In addition, glyphosate’s capacity to promote aluminum accumulation in the brain may make it the principal cause of autism in the U.S.
  • Birth defects: Roundup and glyphosate can disrupt the Vitamin A (retinoic acid) signaling pathway, which is crucial for normal fetal development. The babies of women living within one kilometer of fields sprayed with glyphosate were more than twice as likely to have birth defects according to a study from Paraguay. Congenital defects quadrupled in the decade after Roundup Ready crops arrived in Chaco, a province in Argentina where glyphosate is used roughly eight to ten times more per acre than in the U.S. A study of one farming family in the U.S. documented elevated levels of glyphosate and birth defects in the children, including an imperforate anus, growth hormone deficiency, hypospadias (an abnormally placed urinary hole), a heart defect and a micro penis.
  • Brain cancer: In a study of children with brain cancer compared with healthy children, researchers found that if either parent had been exposed to Roundup during the two years before the child's birth, the chances of the child developing brain cancer doubled.
  • Breast cancer: Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cells growth via estrogen receptors. The only long-term animal study of glyphosate exposure produced rats with mammary tumors and shortened life-spans.
  • Cancer: House-to-house surveys of 65,000 people in farming communities in Argentina where Roundup is used, known there as the fumigated towns, found cancer rates two to four times higher than the national average, with increases in breast, prostate and lung cancers. In a comparison of two villages, in the one where Roundup was sprayed, 31 percent of residents had a family member with cancer, while only 3 percent of residents in a ranching village without spraying had one. The high cancer rates among people exposed to Roundup likely stem from glyphosate’s known capacity to induce DNA damage, which has been demonstrated in numerous lab tests.
  • Celiac disease and gluten intolerance: Fish exposed to glyphosate develop digestive problems that are reminiscent of celiac disease. There are parallels between the characteristics of celiac disease and the known effects of glyphosate. These include imbalances in gut bacteria, impairment in enzymes involved with detoxifying environmental toxins, mineral deficiencies and amino acid depletion.
  • Chronic kidney disease: Increases in the use of glyphosate may explain the recent surge in kidney failure among agricultural workers in Central America, Sri Lanka and India. Scientists have concluded, "Although glyphosate alone does not cause an epidemic of chronic kidney disease, it seems to have acquired the ability to destroy the renal tissues of thousands of farmers when it forms complexes with [hard water] and nephrotoxic metals."
  • Colitis: The toxicity of glyphosate to beneficial bacteria that suppress clostridia, along with clostridia’s high resistance to glyphosate, could be a significant predisposing factor in the overgrowth of clostridia. Overgrowth of clostridia, specifically C. difficile, is a well-established causal factor in colitis.
  • Depression: Glyphosate disrupts chemical processes that impact the production of serotonin, an important neurotransmitter that regulates mood, appetite and sleep. Serotonin impairment has been linked to depression.
  • Diabetes: Low levels of testosterone are a risk factor for Type 2 diabetes. Rats fed environmentally relevant doses of Roundup over a period of 30 days spanning the onset of puberty had reduced testosterone production sufficient to alter testicular cell morphology and to delay the onset of puberty.
  • Heart disease: Glyphosate can disrupt the body’s enzymes, causing lysosomal dysfunction, a major factor in cardiovascular disease and heart failure.
  • Hypothyroidism: House-to-house surveys of 65,000 people in farming communities in Argentina where Roundup is used, known there as the fumigated towns, found higher rates of hypothyroidism.
  • Inflammatory Bowl Disease ("Leaky Gut Syndrome"): Glyphosate can induce severe tryptophan deficiency, which can lead to an extreme inflammatory bowel disease that severely impairs the ability to absorb nutrients through the gut, due to inflammation, bleeding and diarrhea.
  • Liver disease: Very low doses of Roundup can disrupt human liver cell function, according to a 2009 study published in Toxicology.
  • Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS): Sulfate deficiency in the brain has been associated with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Glyphosate disrupts sulfate transport from the gut to the liver, and may lead over time to severe sulfate deficiency throughout all the tissues, including the brain.
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS): An increased incidence of inflammatory bowel disease (IBS) has been found in association with MS. Glyphosate may be a causal factor. The hypothesis is that glyphosate-induced IBS causes gut bacteria to leak into the vasculature, triggering an immune reaction and consequently an autoimmune disorder resulting in destruction of the myelin sheath.
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma: A systematic review and a series of meta-analyses of nearly three decades worth of epidemiologic research on the relationship between non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) and occupational exposure to agricultural pesticides found that B cell lymphoma was positively associated with glyphosate.
  • Parkinson’s disease: The brain-damaging effects of herbicides have been recognized as the main environmental factor associated with neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease. The onset of Parkinson’s following exposure to glyphosate has been well documented and lab studies show that glyphosate induces the cell death characteristic of the disease.
  • Pregnancy problems (infertility, miscarriages, stillbirths): Glyphosate is toxic to human placental cells, which, scientists say, explains the pregnancy problems of agricultural workers exposed to the herbicide.
  • Obesity: An experiment involving the transfer of a strain of endotoxin-producing bacteria from the gut of an obese human to the guts of mice caused the mice to become obese. Since glyphosate induces a shift in gut bacteria towards endotoxin-producers, glyphosate exposure may contribute to obesity in this way.
  • Reproductive problems:  Studies of laboratory animals have found that male rats exposed to high levels of glyphosate, either during prenatal or pubertal development, suffer from reproductive problems, including delayed puberty, decreased sperm production, and decreased testosterone production.
  • Respiratory illnesses: House-to-house surveys of 65,000 people in farming communities in Argentina where Roundup is used, known there as the fumigated towns, found higher rates of chronic respiratory illnesses.

Bayer purchasing Monsanto: "A perfect fit and complement each other ideally," according to Bayer CEO Werner Baumann. The question that remains is: are they the perfect fit for humanity and ideally for a healthy society? The clinical studies prove they are not.

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Enzyme in Broccoli, Cucumbers and Avocados Reverses Aging In Cells?

Much of human health hinges on how well the body manufactures and uses energy. For reasons that remain unclear, cells' ability to produce energy declines with age, prompting scientists to suspect that the steady loss of efficiency in the body's energy supply chain is a key driver of the aging process. Researchers have zeroed in on an enzyme -- found in natural foods like broccoli and cucumbers -- that can slow the chronic conditions that come with age.

Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that supplementing healthy mice with a natural compound called NMN can compensate for this loss of energy production, reducing typical signs of aging such as gradual weight gain, loss of insulin sensitivity and declines in physical activity.
In a paper published in Cell Metabolism, researchers led by the Washington University School of Medicine reported that they found an agent that can balance out what happens in aging cells to essentially make them behave as they would in a younger mouse.

The compound, called nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), is involved in producing another compound that is critical for energy metabolism. When they gave normal aging mice infusions of NMN, they made more of that energy-fueling compound and some of the biological problems associated with aging went away. The NMN-treated animals did not gain as much weight, they were able to convert food into energy more efficiently, their blood sugar was better--even their eyesight improved. The mice receiving NMN were also able to prevent some of the genetic changes associated with aging.

"We have shown a way to slow the physiologic decline that we see in aging mice," said Shin-ichiro Imai, MD, PhD, a professor of developmental biology and of medicine. "This means older mice have metabolism and energy levels resembling that of younger mice. Since human cells rely on this same energy production process, we are hopeful this will translate into a method to help people remain healthier as they age."
Most lab mice live just several years, so the researchers started the NMN treatments at five months, and continued them for a year. The study did not track whether the mice actually live longer, but with lower rates of age-related disease, that's the assumption.
So can you load up on broccoli or cabbage and extend your life? "If you do the math, I wouldn't say it's impossible entirely but probably very difficult to get the whole amount [you need] simply from natural foods," says Dr. Shin-Ichiro Imai, professor of developmental biology and medicine at Washington University and senior author of the paper.

With age, the body loses its capacity to make a key element of energy production called NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide). Past work by Imai and co-senior author Jun Yoshino, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of medicine, has shown that NAD levels decrease in multiple tissues as mice age. Past research also has shown that NAD is not effective when given directly to mice so the researchers sought an indirect method to boost its levels. To do so, they only had to look one step earlier in the NAD supply chain to the NMN compound.
The results are encouraging enough that part of the team, based at Keio University in Tokyo, is launching an early study on people -- using supplements of NMN in pill form. "It's clear that in humans and in rodents, we lose energy with age," says Imai. "We are losing the enzyme NMN. But if we can bypass that process by adding NMN, we can make energy again. These results provide a very important foundation for the human studies."
The findings are also in line with other anti-aging compounds that have shown promise in animal studies, including things like the diabetes drug metformin, rapamycin and sirtuins, all of which are also involved in energy-making process. "All of these pathways cross-talk with each other," says Imai. "We don't know the precise details of how, but they are communicating with each other."
The hope is that the human studies will add provide even more information about how to keep cells young -- and maybe halt, or at least hold off, the diseases that typically creep in as cells get older and lose their function.
"Even though NAD synthesis was stopped only in the fat tissue, we saw metabolic dysfunction throughout the body, including the skeletal muscle, the heart muscle, the liver and in measures of the blood lipids," Yoshino said. "When we gave NMN to these mice, these dysfunctions were reversed. That means NAD in adipose tissue is a critical regulator of whole body metabolism."
Added Imai, "This is important because Jun showed that if you mess up NAD synthesis only in fat tissue, you see insulin resistance everywhere. Adipose tissue must be doing something remarkable to control whole body insulin sensitivity."

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5 Best Bodyweight Training Exercises!

Many people don’t realize the benefits of bodyweight training because in every magazine you see, there are dudes in the gym hitting weights. But, with all training, there is a regression and progression to every exercise. For example a regression for hanging leg lifts is performing a plank. The progression would be performing the movement with a medicine ball between your feet.
Another example would be a bench press. Many people can’t do a conventional bench press because of existing shoulder issues, their form is bad or they just don’t have access to the equipment.
Pushups are a great alternative. Not only can you perform push-ups with various hand positions but you can also do them from an elevated surface extending the range of motion for the shoulders and engage more muscle fibers.

Bodyweight Training Benefits

  1. Free
  2. Versatile, many different variations
  3. Can be done anywhere
  4. Improves movement
  5. Improves relative strength
  6. Can improve reactive strength

Here are my top 5 bodyweight movements

1. Pushups

Not only builds up the chest, shoulders and triceps, but is a great stabilizer of the torso and lower back.
Can be done with various hand, feet and elevated positions. Pushups variations such as EQI’s, hindus and push-up plus are incredible rehabilitative exercises.

2. Bodyweight Squats

This basic movement has huge benefits! It can be an indicator for ankle, hip and thoracic mobility, or it can be an incredible conditioning tool.
Perform them against the wall to drill proficiency and technique, or perform linked in a bodyweight circuit.
You can also create a complex linking with a plyometric movement like sprints, jumping or zig zag hops.

3. Pullups

One of the biggest mass builders for the back, pullups are also one of the most versatile.
How to Modify the Pullup:
  • Varying grip element (towel, thick rope, offset grip)
  • Modifying linear movement; you can perform side to side movement, you can perform a leg lift or L-sit with each rep
  • Overload the movement with a bookbag between your feet.
Remember if you can’t do a pullup, inverted rows are an excellent choice!

4. Bulgarian Split Squats

I really like this movement because it not only builds muscle and leg strength, but it also improves hip mobility and knee stability. If you have a bookbag with some books in it, you can hold it during this movement overhead, in a zercher or bear hug at the chest or out in front of you.
Don’t forget, elevating your front leg on a box will extend the range of motion for this exercise. Also, an EQI in this position is amazing for rehabbing hip and knee issues.

5. Ab Roll-Outs

A more advanced modification to a plank, this movement forces torso rigidity for better movement and increased strength potential for compound, ground-based exercises.
The difference between this movement and a plank is that movement of the upper body is engaged while the torso remain rigid (resisting extension).  Many of you know that there are some pretty innovative modifications to this exercise in Combat Core. I suggest an ab roller, but you can also use blast straps or gymnastic rings to mimic the movement.

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Friday 28 October 2016

She invented bio-plastic from banana peels when she was just 16 years old!

What comes to mind before you discard your banana peel? Certainly not the consideration of its use to reduce petroleum-based pollution and create bio-plastic, yet this is exactly what Elif Bilgin, 18, from Istanbul, Turkey, sought to achieve and successfully accomplished. Winner of the 2013 Science in Action award, Google’s third $50,000 annual competition, she addressed the need for environmentally friendly alternatives with practical resources and easy-to-attain banana peels.

A motivated and compassionate scientist, Elif was driven to find an alternative from petroleum produced plastics to benefit the environment. In her journal she mentions that Thailand discards 200 tons of banana peels per day, therefore the starch and cellulose so important for plastic production could be put to much better use. From her research she discovered that potatoes and mango peels are already commonly used, therefore in Koc High School, Turkey, she began experimenting.

Over the period of four years, her trials using banana peels many times ended with disappointment; 10 failed experiments that created plastics not strong enough or too easily decayed did not slow her down, however. Fueled by past scientist’s determination, she wrote “Even Thomas Edison said ‘I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”. Her persistence resulted in triumph with her last two trials, both creating plastics that had features she sought.

Her efficient method of using banana peels was well documented in her online science entry and easily shows how with little equipment, certain plasticizer ingredients, and starch from the banana peels, it’s possible to create a plastic that retains quality and structure long-term. Elif hopes that the use of bio-plastic will be used to replace some of the petroleum-based plastics in use today for such applications as insulation for electrical cables and for cosmetic prosthesis.
Hoping to attend medical school someday, her future holds many bright achievements to be sure.
Brilliant minds of a variety of ages continue to discover alternative methods for sustainable energy; the one question is, who will now apply these practical findings?

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Exercising and Preventing Disease

It wasn't too long ago that people with conditions such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar, arthritis, asthma and heart disease, were told by Physicians to "take it easy","stay in bed" or ingest several medications in order to stabilize these conditions. Today, there is little doubt how the impact of lifestyle changes, including exercise, can dramatically prevent, treat and even cure many of these ailments.

Any sustained movement, like walking, bicycling, swimming, or cross-country skiing, will reduce the risk of several life-threatening diseases, such as coronary heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, and possibly cancer. Exercise does not need to be boring, expensive, time-consuming, or inconvenient. Moderate forms of exercise will give the benefits needed to prevent disease. Gardening, dancing, walking, household chores, and even shopping expeditions can give you enough exercise to meet the daily requirement. All that's needed to personalize your fitness plan is a creative and adventurous spirit.

Exercise v.s. diet is often the debate that many health professionals evaluate. By examining each disease through clinical trials, we can better determine the efficacy of both exercise and diet in the treatment of many common ailments. Diet, for example, is the cornerstone of diabetes care, but if diet is combined with exercise, diabetics dramatically improve their condition by more than 45% than with diet alone.

"The problem with our health today, is that people are just not moving enough. You're talking about a dramatic decrease in our level of physical activity from just 30 to 50 years ago. That's a relatively insignificant amount of time for our bodies to adapt in comparison to the activity levels we had evolved to before the technological era. This combined with irresponsible eating habits is creating the health crisis you see before you today."
For people with chronic ailments, exercise used to be viewed as asking for trouble. However, current evidence suggests that in both health and disease, the overall prognosis is better for the exerciser than for the sedentary. For example, a recent study showed that intensive workouts can not only slow the progress of coronary disease, but actually restore lost coronary function when the disease is still stable.

"We've yet to find a disease state where exercise isn't helpful."
-Miriam Nelson, Ph.D, Tufts University.

Clinical trials indicate that exercise can help reduce the pain and joint damage caused by arthritis, decrease attacks and the need for medication in asthma sufferers, and ease anxiety and depression. Other research 11indicates that regular workouts may cut the risk of symptomatic gallstones by one-third. Exercise has also recently be found to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and improve adherence to such treatment.

For chronically ill individuals, the psychological as well as physical benefits of exercise can be profound. Even ten minutes of light exercise a day, can help most chronically ill patients feel more vibrant, energetic and alert.

"Exercise is empowering and energizing, and it increases your sense of control over the situation. You're never too sick or too old to get started exercising."
-Bess Marcus, Ph.D, Brown's University

One of the most effective killers in North America is cardiovascular disease. It is also a disease which is so easily preventable through proper exercise and diet. Out of a recent study conducted by Consumers Reports, almost 60% of people who had heart conditions, reported that exercise and diet (types of exercise and diet were not specified) helped them feel much better. Hypertension, a common precursor to cardiovascular disease is also directly influenced, treated and prevented by supervised exercise and diet.

Studies still show that most doctors still fail to advise patients about lifestyle changes to prevent and treat disease. Economic pressure for briefer doctor visits, lack of formal training in nutrition, exercise and lifestyle medicine, seem to underlie doctors' poor performance in this area.

People with chronic medical problems should insist their health-care providers give them information on how exercise and lifestyle changes can affect the course of a disease. If patients cannot obtain this information from their doctors, they should find an appropriate health professional who can.

The Chart below indicates the maximum improvement for both diet and exercise for 6 common disorders, based on well designed clinical trials. These lifestyle changes can also lead to weight loss, which eases many of these disorders, thus increasing the maximum improvement.

High Blood Pressure
Low fat, high produce, high dairy (low fat)
High LDL cholesterol
Low saturated fat
Low HDL cholesterol
High Blood Sugar
High whole grain, high produce, limited calorie
Arthritis Pain
Strength training, flexibility, low-impact aerobic
Low Bone Density
Weight bearing
High calcium (including supplements)

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Smartphones May Soon Detect Cancer!

The capabilities of smartphones are increasing every six months. From GMO detection and viruses, an extension to elaborate laboratories may soon be readily available in the palm of your hands. Washington State University researchers have now developed a low-cost, portable laboratory on a smartphone that can analyze several samples at once to catch a cancer biomarker, producing lab quality results.

Image result for smartphone detects

"Modern biological research is also allowing an extension of laboratory devices on to small computer chips to detect biological information within DNA sequences," said biotech specialist Dr. Marek Banaszewski. "Bioinformatic algorithms within programs will aid the identification of transgenes, promoters, and other functional elements of DNA, making detection of genetically modified foods on-the-spot and real-time without transportation to a laboratory."

Other research, previously published in the American Chemical Society's journal ACS Nano, includes a cellphone camera enabled sensor for allergens in food products and a smart phone attachment that can conduct common kidney tests.

The research team, led by Lei Li, assistant professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, recently published the work in the journal Biosensors and Bioelectronics.
At a time when patients and medical professionals expect always faster results, researchers are trying to translate biodetection technologies used in laboratories to the field and clinic, so patients can get nearly instant diagnoses in a physician’s office, an ambulance or the emergency room.
The WSU research team created an eight channel smartphone spectrometer that can detect human interleukin-6 (IL-6), a known biomarker for lung, prostate, liver, breast and epithelial cancers. A spectrometer analyzes the amount and type of chemicals in a sample by measuring the light spectrum.

lthough smartphone spectrometers exist, they only monitor or measure a single sample at a time, making them inefficient for real world applications. Li’s multichannel spectrometer can measure up to eight different samples at once using a common test called ELISA, or colorimetric test enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, that identifies antibodies and color change as disease markers.
Although Li’s group has only used the smartphone spectrometer with standard lab-controlled samples, their device has been up to 99 percent accurate. The researchers are now applying their portable spectrometer in real world situations.
“With our eight channel spectrometer, we can put eight different samples to do the same test, or one sample in eight different wells to do eight different tests. This increases our device’s efficiency,” said Li, who has filed a provisional patent for the work.
“The spectrometer would be especially useful in clinics and hospitals that have a large number of samples without on-site labs, or for doctors who practice abroad or in remote areas,” he said. “They can’t carry a whole lab with them. They need a portable and efficient device.”
Li’s design works with an iPhone 5. He is creating an adjustable design that will be compatible with any smartphone.
The work was funded by the National Science Foundation and a WSU startup fund. It is in keeping with WSU’s Grand Challenges, a suite of research initiatives aimed at large societal issues. It is particularly relevant to the challenge of sustaining health and its themes of healthy communities.

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Thursday 27 October 2016

6 Natural Herbs To Prevent Mental Disorders!

When it comes to our health, we do everything humanly possible to maintain it. However, when it comes to our mental well-being, we often ignore our emotional extremes and mood swings. Stress, insomnia, and genetics all contribute to hormonal imbalances and this may result in a number of mental diseases and disorders. Many of nature's herbs contain vitamins, minerals and many antioxidants that can counter and prevent several ailments which deteriorate mental health.

Image result for herbs mental

Antioxidants are found to play an important part in this regard. Herbs having antioxidant properties cancel the effects of oxidative compounds that are already present in the body. Since our body is incapable of producing antioxidants that can cancel the effects of all the oxidative free radicals, these have to be taken in the form of dietary supplements.

Many herbs have been used since ancient times, for the prevention and treatment of almost every disease known to man. They can either be encapsulated or taken in form of herbal teas. The good thing about herbal treatments is that they do not pose any serious threats to one’s health as they have minimal side effects.

Mulungu bark is used in Central and South America for calming the nerves, improving the mood and aiding sleep. Mulungu contains erythravine, an active alkaloid which helps in anxiety reduction and protecting brain function. The flavanoids found in Mulungu are one of the best antioxidants and help in having a healthier brain. They are found to inhibit anxiety without any side effects and do not affect basic motor skills.

Another effect of Mulungu is the strong physical sensation of well being. It elevates the mood as well. It is known to be helpful with brain diseases like epilepsy, insomnia and anxiety. Studies have shown that all these diseases lead to major brain disorders and other brain degenerative diseases. Mulungu can be taken on its own or with a stimulant like green tea to amplify its effects. It gives mental clarity and improves brain function.

Mucuna has been used in ayurvedic medicine since 1500 B.C and is also known as the velvet bean. Mucuna contains L.dopa which is a biochemical precursor to several neurotransmitters. Dopamine happens to be one of these neurotransmitters in addition to adrenaline and noradrenalin, and it supports improved brain function and increased memory. It also regulates the mood and cognition.

Mucuna is widely known as an anti aging herb. The antioxidant properties make it anti inflammatory and effective towards the protection of neurons. It protects brain function by keeping a check over cognitive and neural functions. Mucuna’s secret benefit is that it fights redness in brain, which is one of the symptoms of brain degradation.

Passion flower, also called apricot vine, was found in 1956 in Peru. Passion flower is used in herbal medicines to promote calmness and relaxation. It is also found to be very helpful in reducing anxiety. In synergy with other forms of treatment, it is found to be effective in reducing anxiety, irritability, insomnia and agitation. It also helps with psychiatric disorder called adjustment disorder with anxious mood. Passion flower also helps with sleep disorders and seizures.

The best way to take passion flower is, as an herbal tea. According to the NYU Langone Medical Center, you should drink one cup of passion flower tea, three times a day.

A natural tranquilizer, Skullcap is an American perennial herb found from New York to Virginia and southwards to South Carolina, Alabama and Missouri. Skullcap is a very powerful medicinal herb. It is used in treatments of many nervous related disorders like epilepsy, hysteria, insomnia and anxiety. It is also used in the treatment of ADD and a number of other nervous disorders. It is anti inflammatory, antispasmodic, febrifuge, sedative and tonic in nature. It contains volatile oils, tannins and scutellarins that are very helpful in mental disorders. Research suggests it possesses mood enhancing properties and protects brain against damaging effects caused by inflammation.
According to HerbsList, Skullcap eases muscle spasms, muscle twitching and may help in ailments that involve involuntary limb movement, such as Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.

From the roots and stem of the piper methysticum plant, a non-alcoholic beverage is made. This herb is found in the islands of South Pacific. It is being used since the early 90’s as the herbal medicine for stress and anxiety. It contains kava lactones which are responsible for its psychoactive qualities. They work in the brain to produce non narcotic action against anxiety. Kava is beneficial for anxiety and doesn’t affect heart rate or blood pressure.

Other disorders where Kava has been found beneficial are migraines, ADHD, psychosis, depression and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Ginseng, also called Panax ginseng, and is a widely used herbal remedy, all over the world. Its health benefits have been known for over thousands of years. It is used as a tonic to balance, stimulate and relax the nervous system. It brings strength and wisdom.
Ginseng is an adaptogen. Adaptogens are known to make us more resilient to mental and physical stress. They reduce the stress hormone cortisol and increase the adrenal gland. Adaptogens can calm you down and boost your energy without over stimulation.

It has the same relaxing effect and increased alertness as experiences after green tea. It helps in getting better sleep, increased energy levels and greater personal satisfaction. It is also helpful with the treatment of depression by regulating serotonin, dopamine and noreprinephrine. It works as brain booster and protector. It improves brain function and concentration. It helps with memory issues and protects against age related mental issues. Ginseng also works as an antioxidant and helps in protecting the brain cells against free radical damage.
Increasingly large numbers of people are suffering from brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and Dementia. A number of medicines are also available to help with the symptoms, but they are heavy on the pocket and come with many side effects. These herbs have been in use since hundreds of years and do not pose any health threats. Continuous use of these herbs will ensure a healthy brain, strong enough to fight away any disease.

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It’s The Most Powerful Antioxidant And It Will Cleanse Your Arteries From LDL Cholesterol
Numerous people around the world suffer from issues linked to LDL cholesterol, which can cause heart diseases. These issues are usually treated with medicines, but we can offer you a way to solve these problems completely naturally.
Basil is a bushy annual herb, which is often grown due to the seeds and leaves. It is a potent natural antibiotic with strong antioxidant properties, which is often considered to be the king of herbs.
Its medicinal properties have been valued since ancient times, and the high phytonutrient content provides amazing health benefits.
This herb needs warm, tropical climates.  Experts claim that basil can be of more than 60 varieties, and they are all divided into three types: bush, purple and sweet.
The basil can be grown inside and outside the house. You can snip off the budding heads as soon as they appear, and to stimulate the growth of new branches, you can cut underneath the base of the leaf, close to the bottom of the spindly stems.
For best effects, you should use it while fresh, as it has a pleasant, pungent flavor. Its high vitamin K content regulates bad cholesterol and prevents blood clots. It is also high in vitamin A, vitamin C, potent antioxidants, and beta-carotenes, which prevent the blood vessels from damage caused by free radicals. Therefore, this amazing herb prevents strokes, heart attacks, and atherosclerosis.
Basil is also a rich source of minerals, including calcium, manganese, iron, potassium, as well as DNA-protecting flavonoids.
The daily recommended dosage of this herb is 2 tablespoons of basil daily. These are the most important health benefits of the use of this impressive herb:
-Natural Antibiotic
Basil is high in antimicrobial properties which make it a powerful antibiotic. All you need to do is to mix it with garlic and consume it to fight common colds and the flu.
-Cleanses the Blood Vessels
This herb effectively cleanses the arteries from LDL cholesterol.
-Powerful Antioxidants
Basil is high in potent antioxidants which prevent numerous health issues and protects from the damage due to carcinogens. Basil efficiently prevents many other health issues, including diarrhea, warts, kidneys, constipation, headaches, cough, parasites, etc.
Source: yourhealthypage.or

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Facts About Calcium

Facts About Calcium

Calcium is nature's most renowned structural material. Indeed, calcium is a necessary component of all living things and is also abundant in many non-living things, particularly those that help support life, such as soil and water. Teeth, sea shells, bones and cave stalactites are all products of calcium.
Interestingly, calcium seems to come in fifth place wherever it goes: It is the fifth most abundant element by mass in the Earth's crust (after oxygen, silicon, aluminum and iron); the fifth most abundant dissolved ion in seawater (after sodium, chloride, magnesium and sulfate); and the fifth most abundant element in the human body (after oxygen, carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen). It is, however, the most abundant metallic element in the human body, 99 percent of which can be found in our bones and teeth (about 2 lbs. of it!), according to Chemicool.
In its pure elemental state, calcium is a soft, silvery-white alkaline earth metal. It is important to note, however, that calcium is never found in this isolated state in nature, but exists instead in compounds. Calcium compounds can be found in a variety of minerals, including limestone (calcium carbonate), gypsum (calcium sulfate) and fluorite (calcium fluoride), according to Chemicool. Calcium makes up about 4.2 percent of the Earth's crust by weight.
In order to isolate pure calcium, it must be extracted through electrolysis, a technique that uses a direct electrical current to separate elements from their naturally occurring sources. Once isolated, calcium is quite reactive and will form a grayish-white oxide and nitride coating when exposed to air.
Calcium (Ca) is No. 20 in the periodic table of the elements, appearing just below magnesium in the same column (Group IIA) as the other alkaline earth metals (a group of metals that are more chemically reactive than most metals). Calcium comes from the Latin word "calx," meaning lime. This is not a reference to the fruit, but rather calcium oxide (CaO), the useful building material derived from heated limestone.
In 1808, Cornish chemist and inventor Sir Humphry Davy was the first person to successfully isolate calcium. A few other scientists, Magnus Pontin and Jöns Jacob Berzelius, had come close; they had been able to produce a calcium amalgam after performing electrolysis on a mixture of lime and mercury oxide. This time, Davy repeated their electrolysis method on the same calcium amalgam, but he added more lime to the mixture, producing more of the amalgam from which he was able to distill away the mercury, leaving only calcium, according to the Royal Society of Chemistry.
Once calcium had been successfully isolated, the element was able to be studied further, revealing its importance for the survival of all living things.
  • Atomic number (number of protons in the nucleus): 20
  • Atomic symbol (on the periodic table of the elements): Ca
  • Atomic weight (average mass of the atom): 40.078
  • Density: 1.55 grams per cubic centimeter
  • Phase at room temperature: solid
  • Melting point: 1,548 degrees Fahrenheit (842 degrees Celsius) 
  • Boiling point: 2,703 F (1,484 C)  
  • Number of isotopes (atoms of the same element with a different number of neutrons): 24; 5 stable
  • Most common isotopes: Ca-40 (97 percent of natural abundance); Ca-44 (2 percent of natural abundance); Ca-42 (0.6 percent of natural abundance); Ca-48 (0.2 percent of natural abundance); Ca-43 (0.1 percent of natural abundance); Ca-46 (0.004 percent of natural abundance.
Calcium is extremely important to the human body. Not only is it vital for bones and teeth, but it assists in muscle movement by carrying messages from the brain to all our body parts. Cells in all living things must communicate with, or "signal," one another. Calcium ions act as vital messengers between these cells and are necessary in all multicellular life forms. They also assist in the release of hormones and enzymes.
In food, calcium is found in mineral form. Foods high in calcium include dairy products — such as milk, cheese and yogurt — and some vegetables, such as kale, watercress, spinach and broccoli. In order for calcium to absorb properly, it should be taken with vitamin D. Magnesium is also necessary for proper assimilation and use of calcium in the body. In fact, if we take too much calcium and not enough magnesium, it can cause problems in the body.
  • Lime, or calcium oxide, produces a brilliant, intense light when exposed to an oxyhydrogen flame, according to Chemicool. In the 1800s, before electricity was invented, this substance was used to light up the theater so actors truly performed "in the limelight" — hence the saying.
  • When turtles (typically pet turtles) don't have enough calcium circulating through their blood, they may get an ailment called Metabolic Bone Disease, commonly known as Soft Shell Syndrome. For a turtle to be healthy, the calcium to phosphorous ratio should be 2:1. When their calcium levels are low, however, the mineral is leached from their bones in the body's attempt to balance things out. The result is soft bones, weakness and a soft, deformed shell, and it often results in death. The disease can be prevented with a proper diet and adequate sunlight (or other appropriate lighting for reptiles). 
  • Stalactites and stalagmites, the icicle-shaped formations found in underground caverns, are formed slowly over time by the build-up of calcite residue. This occurs when water seeps through the cracks in the ceiling of a limestone cave, dissolving and carrying along traces of calcite, the building material of limestone. As the water drips from the ceiling, this calcite residue begins to build up at the site of the drip, eventually resulting in icicle-shaped stalactites hanging from the cave ceiling. This water dripping from the stalactites then forms stalagmites on the ground below.
  • Many nutritionists recommend a calcium-magnesium ratio of 2:1. But although our bodies require more calcium, we are actually more likely to become deficient in magnesium. This is because our bodies tend to store and recycle calcium, while magnesium gets used or excreted and must be replenished on a daily basis. 
  • Calcium carbonate is the active ingredient in many antacids, such as Tums and Rolaids. The alkaline compound works by neutralizing the stomach acid responsible for heartburn and indigestion.
Not only is calcium essential for human life, but it is also an essential nutrient for plant growth. In most types of soils, calcium is made available to plants through the weathering of minerals. As an alkaline earth metal, calcium plays a vital role in controlling soil pH (potential of hydrogen), a measure of the soil's acidity or alkalinity.
The availability of calcium can indirectly affect many microbial processes that are sensitive to soil pH, such as decomposition, nitrogen mineralization and nitrification, said Feike A. Dijkstra, a biogeochemist and associate professor at the Centre for Carbon, Water and Food at the University of Sydney.
Calcium is typically abundant in most soils with some areas having naturally higher or lower levels of calcium. "High levels of calcium in the soil are usually found in arid and semi-arid regions where potential evapotranspiration is larger than actual rainfall," Dijkstra told Live Science. "Certain plants have adapted to calcium-rich and alkaline soils, and are called calcicoles. In contrast, calcifuges are plants that thrive in calcium-poor and acidic soils."
Problems can occur when there is a pH imbalance in the soil. Soil with an overabundance of calcium can result in the pH being too high (above 7), or alkaline, and this sometimes "reduces the solubility of nutrients such as phosphate and many micro-nutrients, which can then limit plant growth," Dijkstra explained. The bigger problem, however, typically lies in soil with too little calcium, as this results in soil acidification. This can happen when calcium is leached out of the soil through heavy rain or even more problematic — acid rain.
"During the 1970s and 1980s acid rain was a major problem affecting many forests in northeastern America and Europe," Dijkstra said. "When acid rain reaches the soil, the protons of these strong acids in acid rain replace calcium cations on the exchange sites, and the calcium is leached out of the soil profile."
"Acid rain killed many forests because the associated soil acidification resulted in increased solubility of aluminum. Aluminum is toxic to plants when it gets above certain concentrations in the soil," he said. "Since the Acid Rain Program established under the 1990 Clean Air Act, acid rain has become less of a problem for forests in the northeastern U.S."
Calcium compounds have a wide variety of uses, particularly in the making of construction materials. Gypsum, or calcium sulfate, is used in making plaster and also "plaster of Paris," a heavy white powder that, when mixed with water, hardens into a cast to set fractured bones.
Limestone, or calcium carbonate, is used directly as construction material and indirectly for cement. When limestone is heated it releases carbon dioxide, leaving behind quicklime (calcium oxide). When quicklime is mixed with water, it creates slaked lime (calcium hydroxide) which is used to make cement. Slaked lime is also used as a soil conditioner and as a water treatment agent to reduce acidity. When mixed with sand, slaked lime pulls in carbon dioxide from the air and hardens into lime plaster, according to the Royal Society of Chemistry.
Pure calcium metal is used as a reducing agent in the preparation of other types of metals, such as thorium and uranium and zirconium. It can also be used as an alloying agent for aluminum, copper, lead and magnesium alloys, or as a deoxidizer, desulfurizer and decarburizer for a variety of ferrous and nonferrous alloys.
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This Is The Real Reason Why Wheat Is Toxic & Making You Sick!

Many people who have gluten sensitivity or allergy, as well as the ones who avoid it due to its side-effects, follow a gluten-free diet.
However, newest studies show that gluten might not be the harmful ingredient in wheat.
Apparently, the main culprit is even worse. Namely, the wheat harvesting protocol in the U.S. uses an herbicide called Roundup few days before the harvesters work through the fields.
This is due to the fact that dead wheat plants are much easier on the farm equipment and help the harvest to be bigger, easier, and much sooner.
Such other herbicides include a deadly active ingredient to wheat and barley, called glyphosate, which has been used prior to the harvest since the 1980s, and is commonly used as a drying agent 7-10 days before the harvest.
This has been thoroughly studied by Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT, and she has reported her findings  at nutrition conferences. According to her, desiccating non-organic wheat crops with glyphosate pre-harvest has been so common by the 1990s that it contaminated most of the non-organic wheat in the United States.
This can be explained by the fact that when wheat is exposed to a toxic chemical like glyphosate, it releases more seeds, leading to a slightly greater yield.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that 99% of durum wheat, 97% of spring wheat and 61% of winter wheat had been treated with herbicides as of 2012.
What’s more, the use of this toxic substances has significantly increased in the last twenty years, since durum wheat has shown an 88% increase, spring wheat a 91% increase, and winter wheat a 47% increase since 1998.
Roundup is used by farmers in order to destroy the wheat plants and help them harvest more crops, and much earlier. Yet, this is not a licensed practice, and this leads to traces of the herbicide in the products we consume. The use of this herbicide has been completely banned in the Netherlands.
According to the herbicide manufacturers, it is minimally toxic to people, but the journal Entropy published a research which showed that it seriously disrupts physiology.
Its active ingredient disrupts the vital pathway found in beneficial gut microbes, which are in charge of the synthesis of critical amino acids. Probiotics are critical for our health, and help digestion, boost the immune system and synthesize vitamins.
Additionally, glyphosate inhibits the enzymes created by the gut microbiome, which are essential for the detoxification of the chemicals that the body is exposed to.
Consequently, people exposed to glyphosate by using Roundup become even more prone to the detrimental effects of other chemicals and environmental toxins.
The exposure to glyphosate over months and years leads to inflammation, which causes severe health issues, like diabetes, infertility, obesity, gastrointestinal disorders, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, depression, and cancer.

Therefore, the consumption of conventional wheat can seriously endanger your health in many ways, causing diseases and different health conditions. We strongly advise you to replace it with low gluten, organic, unhybridized Einkorn wheat and avoid these potential threats.

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Wednesday 26 October 2016

Is it safe to raise a BABY as a vegan?

Experts reveal whether the plant-based diet can be healthy for young children

  • Numerous cases of children being malnourished from a vegan diet exist
  • But they aren't about veganism - they are being neglected, say parents
  • Experts are adamant 'it is possible to provide a balanced diet to vegans'
  • There are no known plant sources of vitamin B-12 - vital for development
  • But there are alternative sources vegans can get the nutrient from

There's a right way and a wrong way to raise a baby on vegan food, experts claim. 
Earlier this month a Pennsylvania mother was charged with endangerment for feeding her baby nothing but a small amount of nuts and berries.
While in Italy, after a number of vegan babies were hospitalised for malnourishment, a bill was proposed to make it a crime for children under 16 to follow the diet. 
But those cases are not about veganism at all and are cases of neglect, say parents who are raising their children to follow the ethical diet. 
With sound nutrition and dietary planning 'it is possible to provide a balanced diet to vegetarians and vegans', experts say

With sound nutrition and dietary planning 'it is possible to provide a balanced diet to vegetarians and vegans', experts say
Fulvia Serra, from Colorado, who is raising her 1-year-old son Sebastiano as a vegan, said pinning bad parenting on a vegan diet are unfair on those who have done their homework.
'They stress the elements of veganism in these stories, but it's not that these people aren't giving their children the right kind of food, it's that they aren't feeding them,' she said.
'To get a child to the point of starvation, it means you are ignoring him and his crying all the time. It's neglect.'
The American Academy of Pediatrics' book Pediatric Nutrition devotes a chapter to vegetarian and vegan diets. 
It describes how, with sound nutrition and dietary planning, 'it is possible to provide a balanced diet to vegetarians and vegans.'
Fulvia Serra, from Colorado, who is raising her 1-year-old son Sebastiano as a vegan, said veganism isn't to blame for malnourishment in children - neglect is
Fulvia Serra, from Colorado, who is raising her 1-year-old son Sebastiano as a vegan, said veganism isn't to blame for malnourishment in children - neglect is
Sheela Magge, an endocrinologist at the Children's National Health System, said: 'For children in general you can have a safe vegan diet, but it has to be in consultation with a pediatrician or health care provider.
'These are critical times in brain development, and it has to be done carefully.'
The ideal first food for babies is breast milk and many vegan mothers opt to breastfeed. 
To get a child to the point of starvation, it means you are ignoring him and his crying all the time. It's neglect
Fulvia Serra, from Colorado, who is raising her 1-year-old son Sebastiano as a vegan
But for those who can't or don't, the only other option is a soy-based formula, Dr Magge said.
Key nutrients for babies are vitamin B-12 and vitamin D, as well as iron, zinc and calcium.
Getting enough B-12, which comes from milk and eggs, is a specific concern in the vegan diet as a deficiency can lead to neurological problems. 
As babies nurse less and start consuming more solid foods, parents need to make sure all the nutrients necessary for proper development are being provided. 
A pediatrician can help guide parents and offer supplements if needed.
Reed Mangels is a nutritionist in Massachusetts, who works with the Vegetarian Resource Group, a nonprofit education and advocacy group.
She raised her two children, now 24 and 21, vegan.
Getting enough B-12, which comes from milk and eggs and is vital for development, is a specific concern in the vegan diet as a deficiency can lead to neurological problems.  But there are alternative sources, experts say
Getting enough B-12, which comes from milk and eggs and is vital for development, is a specific concern in the vegan diet as a deficiency can lead to neurological problems.  But there are alternative sources, experts say
News stories about malnourished children can be stressful for parents who have done their homework and have to defend themselves time and again, she said.
Ms Mangels said: 'The problem is not the vegan part of the diet, but it's the inadequacy of the diet.
'Where on earth did they get the idea that this was a vegan diet?'
Parents raising vegan kids need to be armed with facts, like being able to rattle off which foods and supplements are providing adequate vitamin B-12 and protein and where their kids are getting calcium.
For those who would question the safety of raising vegan babies, her suggested response is: 'The doctors say we are doing it right.'


Swapping meat and eggs for lentils and nuts could add years to your life, research in August found.
Scientists discovered eating less protein from animal sources such as red meat and dairy products, and increasing plant proteins from cereals, beans and soya, substantially reduced death rates.
Mortality from heart disease fell 12 per cent, and deaths from all causes fell by 10 per cent, for every three per cent increase in calories from plant protein, the researchers found.
In contrast, raising the animal protein share of calories by 10 per cent led to an eight per cent greater chance of dying from a heart problem and two per cent higher risk of all-cause death. 
Elizabeth Hawk, from Pennyslyvania, was charged with endangering her 11-month-old son by restricting him to a diet of small amounts of fruit and nuts earlier this month. 
She became 'obsessed' with a vegan diet, prompting her estranged husband to contact child welfare workers, a criminal complaint says.
Doctors determined in August that the baby had developmental delays and couldn't crawl because he was malnourished.
The complaint also said the vegan diet also worsened a bad rash.
Calls seeking comment from Ms Hawk, her former husband and the public defender's office weren't returned.
Stories of vegan parents being arrested for malnourished children pop up every few years in the US, and the cases in Italy have made international news.
In Arizona, Kimu Parker was arrested in April 2005 for nearly starving her three children with a diet she and the children's father called vegan. 
She was sentenced to 30 years in prison; the father, Blair Parker, got 15 years.
In Florida the same year, Joseph and Lamoy Andressohn got probation for neglect in the death of their 6-month-old son, who was fed only wheat grass, coconut water and almond milk.  
In Georgia, Jade Sanders and Lamont Thomas were sentenced to life in prison for the 2004 death of their 6-week-old son, who starved to death after they fed him a too-limited diet of soy milk and apple juice.