Art therapy.

Introduction:

Art therapy is an integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families, and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psychotherapeutic connection.

Art therapy, facilitated by a professional art therapist, effectively supports personal and relational treatment goals as well as community concerns. Art therapy is used to improve cognitive and sensor-motor functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate emotional resilience, promote insight, enhance social skills, reduce and resolve conflicts and distress, and advance societal and ecological change.

Who are art therapists?

Art therapists are master-level clinicians who work with people of all ages across a broad spectrum of practice. Guided by principled standards and scope of practice, their education and supervised training prepares them for culturally proficient work with diverse populations in a variety of settings.

Honoring individuals’ values and beliefs, art therapists’ work with people who are challenged with medical and mental health problems, as well as individuals seeking emotional, creative, and spiritual growth.

Art therapists can work with individuals, couples, families, and groups in diverse settings. Some examples include:

  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Veteran’s clinics
  • Private practice
  • Psychiatric and rehabilitation facilities
  • Community clinics
  • Crisis centers
  • Forensic institutions
  • Senior communities

There are 5 main types of art therapy:

Painting

Collaging

Photography
Digital art

Textiles

How does art therapy help the distressed?

Through integrative methods, art therapy engages the mind, body, and spirit in ways that are distinct from verbal articulation alone. Kinesthetic, sensory, perceptual, and symbolic opportunities invite alternative modes of receptive and expressive communication, which can circumvent the limitations of language. Visual and symbolic expression gives voice to experience and empowers individual, communal, and societal transformation.

Conclusion:

Art therapy can help people with chronic/terminal illness:  As art therapy helps in expressing feelings, it can also help patients to regain their sense of freedom and control. – People who cannot express their feelings: People who cannot express their feelings can use art therapy to show their emotions without any verbal communication.

WHY MORE PATIENTS ARE SEEKING HOLISTIC PHYSICIANS?

Introduction:

Medicine is as much as an art as it is a science. Today the allopathic physicians are time strapped and do not treat the patients as a complete holistic entity –THE MIND, BODY AND SOUL. 

Physician factors:

It is time that allopathic physicians should look within and deeply introspect. Very often their own attitudes and behaviors contribute to difficult encounters with patients.

Many allopathic physicians can be:

  • Angry or overtly defensive
  • Physicians can sometimes experience a burn out. They can get stressed and generally frustrated react negatively to patients.
  • Fatigued or Harried Physicians
  • Physicians can be overworked and sleep deprived.
  • Dogmatic or Arrogant Physicians. Some physicians are dismissive about diet and Alternate therapies because of their own personal prejudices.
  • Some physicians have strong personal beliefs and values, which prevent them from providing us with adequate information about their care.
  • Language problems and difficulty in communicating with patients due to a lack of a proper interpreter.
  •  Multiple persons in the Exam Room can sometimes unnerve physicians. 

Patients can also be at fault:

Often, the time strapped allopathic physician encounter several difficult varieties of patients like:

  • Angry, Defensive, Frightened or Resistant Patients
  • Manipulative Patients who love to play on the guilt of others, threatening rage, legal action or suicide
  • Somatizing Patients who present with a chronic course of multiple vague or exaggerated symptoms and often suffer from co-morbid anxiety, depression and personality disorders. They often have a history of multiple diagnostic tests.
  • Grieving Patients
  • Embarrassed patients who may be lonely, dependent or too afraid or embarrassed to ask the questions they really want answered. They may also be patients with a large number of perfectly sane questions.

Conclusion:
 
More and more patients are seeking the help of a Holistic physician because a Holistic MD will at first function like any other orthodox specialist.  He will take a detailed history and do a clinical examination, such as pulse, BP and a complete physical examination.  Then he will perform the diagnostic blood tests that any MD normally does.  The initial work up may last more than an hour and this helps both the physician and the patient to understand each other and develop trust for one another.
 

When a patient chooses a Holistic physician, he or she has the option of trying natural complementary therapies in tandem with the allopathic treatment and this helps in elimination of the toxins in the patient and leads him to a complete and comprehensive holistic cure.


Patients with intractable health issues often search for a physician because they believe in the power of the body to heal itself, but they also recognize the need a physician who can prescribe drugs if needed.


Other patients seek holistic cures because they have exhausted all the options of conventional medicine.  A holistic physician will be able to factor past therapies and then initiate a new health regimen to help patients improve their health through orthodox and alternative means.

The Vexing problem of Erectile Dysfunction in men.

Introduction:

Everyday, I get at least 5 Spam mails asking me, whether I have erectile dysfunction? Whether I am able to satisfy my partner?  Whether I would like Viagra or Cialis?  Apparently erectile dysfunction is a big problem and most adult males are reticent about discussing their problem openly.  One of the most embarrassing and shameful conditions that a man may face throughout his lifetime is an inability to perform sexually.  It’s a problem that many men throughout the world face.

Consider these statistics:

A one out of nine man in America faces problems with erectile dysfunction. That accounts for over eleven percent of all men in the country!  As far as the total number of men in the United States there are that have problems achieving an erection, the number sits at around thirty million people.

Between twenty and forty six percent of all men that are between the ages of forty and sixty-nine experience erectile dysfunction. While the problem is prevalent in those of an older age, it can strike young and old men alike.

What are the causes of erectile dysfunction (ED) in men?

The most common cause of ED are Diseases—such as diabetes, kidney disease, chronic alcoholism, multiple sclerosis, arteriosclerosis, vascular disease, and neurological disease—account for about 70 percent of ED cases. Between 35 and 50 percent of men with diabetes experience ED.

Lifestyle choices like, smoking, being overweight, and avoiding exercise are possible causes of ED.

In addition, many common medicines—blood pressure drugs, antihistamines, antidepressants, tranquilizers, appetite suppressants, and cimetidine (an ulcer drug)—can produce ED as a side effect.

In 10 to 20% cases, experts believe that psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, guilt, depression, low self-esteem, and fear of sexual failure cause ED.

Some foods are great aphrodisiacs:

Some foods are said to increase the libido. The real reasons may be due to psychological effects on the brain, which helps release certain chemicals that increase the libido.  It is believed that plant aphrodisiacs include nuts, grains, fruits and some grains.  There is no real scientific proof that vegetables, herbs, nuts or grains can really improve libido.  Much of our current knowledge is based on folklore.

Vegetables.  Asparagus and artichoke are two vegetables that seem to have aphrodisiac like properties although nobody knows what chemicals in them do this trick.  Celery is said to contain a hormone called as androsterone, a male hormone that stimulates sexual arousal in females. 

Even vegetables like carrot, fennel and onions have a reputation of being good for the libido.  In many Indian ashrams, where aspirants are practicing celibacy, onion is never on the menu.

Fruits.  Among fruits, banana takes the cake. It is said to contain certain minerals and an enzyme called as bromelain that is supposed to improve the libido.  Chinese swear by the pomegranate as a symbol of fertility because of its abundant seeds.  The peach is considered to be a seductive fruit, perhaps by virtue of its shape. Perhaps, these fruits have vitamins and minerals that contribute to the well-being of the individual and confer an increased libido.

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Nuts.  The gingko nut is most popular, as it is said to increase the circulation in the lower part of the body and thus improves the libido.

Grains. Grains like oats help the release of testosterone and this helps libido.

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Herbs and spices. Basil, cardamom, clove, garlic, ginger, pepper and asafetida are good for literally spicing up your sex life.

Some of the best selling herbs for libido:

Ginsengis one of the best-selling herbs in the US and much of Asia.  I have to doubt is efficacy. It is valued for its revitalizing capacity and perhaps the root has a peculiar human like shape.

Horny Goat Weed is another popular aphrodisiac from China  and its weed is prized.

Fo-Ti is also called he shou wu, which means “black-haired Mr. It is said that a Chinese villager called “He” took fo-ti and restored his black hair, youthful appearance and sexual vitality

Damiana  is a plant native to Mexico and the southern United States. It has been widely used as an aphrodisiac in Mexico for men and women.

Tribulus Terrestris is a herb that has been used in the traditional medicine of China and India for centuries.

Tongkat Ali is a tree found in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia and is called as the “Asian Viagra”. 

Maca  is an ancient herb used by ancient Incan warriors before going to battle to make them physically strong.  However they were not allowed to take this herb after battle as it increased the libido.

Muira Puama is called as the  “potency wood”. It  is a small Brazilian tree that grows across the Amazon River basin. It has a long history of use as an aphrodisiac.

.Yohimbe is an evergreen tree that grows in western Africa in Nigeria, Cameroon, the Congo and Gabon. It is promoted as a natural aphrodisiac.

Ayurvedic aphrodisiacs:

Ayurvedic texts provide a detailed classification for male sexual dysfunction.

Herbs for promoting the quality of semen.

The most prominent herb is White Musali. This herb is supposed to increase the sperm count and the quality of semen and increase the motility of the sperms.

Ayurvedic Herbs For erectile dysfunction.

These herbs act as sex stimulants, they promote the sexual drive and increase the sexual desire.  Prominent among these herbs are:. Ashwagandha, Musali, Sambal Musali and Nux vomicaSome herbs actually cause sexual arousal by irritating the urinary bladder.  Some herbs  like Suchi, Karpura, and Sarpagandha  sedate the nerves and increase sexual stimulation.

Ayurvedic Herbs For Premature Ejaculation. 

These herbs delay the ejaculation of semen and increase the copulation time. These have an astringent and dry property.  Some examples are  Samundarshosha, Jaiphala, and Akarakara.

Ayurvedic anaphrodisiacs:

Anaphrodisiacs are herbs reduce sexual drive and sexual drive. In the extreme cases these can cause diminished libido and cause Impotency. This action is mediated in two ways. Some of the herbs contain alkalis destroy the semen or decrease its production. I think these herbs are well worth trying on habitual sexual offenders.

Homeopathy and erectile dysfunction.

There are several useful remedies in Homeopathy. Prominent among then is Agnus, Arnica, Avena Sativa, Chininum Sulf, Cinchona, Conium, Damiana, Selenium, Staphisagria, Yohimbine and Zinc phos.

Conclusion:

It is sad to see that men with go to any length to get over this problem, often getting fleeced by quacks. 

“The age of discretion is the age of impotence” – Author unknown…

Victims of this malady should first consult their physicians to rule out any organic disease or drug interactions. There are drugs for this disease.  Between Viagra and Cialis, I find that Cialis is safer in my allopathic practice. If these drugs do not work, there are papaverine injections, which give you a goodish erection. The ultimate allopathic weapon is the penile implant, which offer good results in well-selected subjects.

If the cause is psychological, which is about 10 to 20 % then counseling may be the best answer.  Ultimately sufferers of psychological ED should realize that sex is an act, which is begins between the ears (in the mind) and not an act, which is between the legs alone.

Reference:

www.steadyhealth.com.

www.altmedicine.about.com.

www.webmd.com.

www.mayoclinic.com.

Cinnamon and Honey.

Introduction:

Did you know that cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known?  It has a mention in the Bible.  It was used in ancient Egypt not only as a beverage flavoring and medicine, but also as an embalming agent.  It was so highly treasured that it was considered more precious than gold.  Cinnamon has found a mention in the Chinese botanical medical texts, as early as 2,700 B.C.

Cinnamon’s was one of the most popular spices in medieval Europe. Due to its demand, cinnamon became one of the first commodities traded regularly between the Near East and Europe.  Cinnamon is produced in Sri Lanka, India, Madagascar, Brazil and the Caribbean.

The oldest written reference to honey dates back to the Egyptians in 5,500 B.C. But honeybees are far older than man’s historical record, written or otherwise. Homo sapiens evolved 50,000 years ago; bees were making honey perhaps 40 million years before that.

A combination of Cinnamon and honey:

Ayurvedic and Unani physicians and Practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine have been using a mixture of honey and cinnamon in treating numerous diseases for several centuries.

Arthritis
A paste of one-teaspoon cinnamon, one part honey and two parts of lukewarm water is massaged over the painful joint and it gives relief. Patients suffering from arthritis may also take 1 cup of lukewarm water mixed with 2 teaspoons of honey and one teaspoon of cinnamon powder.

Upset stomach
A mixture of honey with cinnamon powder cures is curative for dyspepsia, bloating and hyperacidity.  It is said to have to have amazing digestive power after a heavy gastronomic extravaganza.

Toothache
It was an ancient practice in India to use a paste of one teaspoon of cinnamon powder and five teaspoons of honey for relieving a toothache.

Protects against Influenza and bolsters the immune system:

Honey and cinnamon have natural anti-microbial activity against many common bacteria and mild viruses and can be used as alternatives in mild influenza.

Heart diseases

Pastes of honey and cinnamon powder may be applied on brown bread and taken for breakfast. These two ingredients have the power of reducing cholesterol levels naturally and thus help preventing coronary artery disease.  It is also said to have the power of reducing arteriosclerosis, which makes arteries rigid.

Acne, eczemas and ringworm of the skin.

It is a home remedy in these conditions. Three tablespoons of honey is mixed with one tablespoon of cinnamon and turmeric powder.  This is applied on the affected skin part, while going to sleep and washed off in the morning.
 
Weight Loss.
Drinking honey and cinnamon power boiled in a of cup water daily in the morning, half an hour before breakfast on an empty stomach and at night before sleeping is said to induce weight loss. Ayurvedic physicians swear that this mixture prevents the absorption of fat from the gut.

Bad breath.

People of South America gargle their mouth with honey and cinnamon powder to keep their breath fresh throughout the day.

Longevity.

Tea made with honey and cinnamon powder, when taken regularly arrests the ravages of old age.

Fatigue.

Senior citizens who take honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts are more alert, flexible and less fatigued.

Other uses:

This mixture is said to useful in restoring deafness. It is also said to regulate the clotting process.  Cinnamon may significantly help people with type 2 diabetes improve their ability to respond to insulin.  It has been tried in terminal cancers and it has shown promising results in research in Japan and Australia.  In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) it is considered to be a warming agent and is useful in colds and flu’s.   Cinnamon is also an excellent source of trace minerals, manganese, iron, and calcium and dietary fiber.

Conclusion:

Nature has provided all the means to be healthy and free from illness. Cinnamon and honey are just two examples.

Nature is just enough; but men and women must comprehend and accept her suggestions.

-Antoinette Brown Blackwell.

References and links:

www.angelfire.com.

www.leaflady.org.

www.ezinearticles.com.

www.weight-loss-advisor.com.

Alternatives to Hormone Replacement Therapy.

Introduction:

The last few decades have seen doctors prescribing synthetic hormones to women who are near menopause or to those who have attained menopause. These hormones are also used in regulation periods, as contraceptives, in premenstrual syndrome (PMS), for women with heavy bleeding during pregnancy, women with fibroids, endometriosis and for post-menopausal depression, hot flushes and lack of sexual drive. It was also hoped that hormone replacement therapy would stave off heart disease and osteoporosis.

But hormone replacement therapy is fraught with great risk. There was an increased risk of cardiovascular events, strokes, breast cancer and dementia.

What are the alternatives for this problem?

Alternative therapists prefer Soy as a natural remedy as it contains goodish amounts of plant estrogens.  Japanese women suffer from lesser incidents of breast cancer and menopausal symptoms are milder because of a diet that is rich in soy. A soy rich diet along with a low fat diet helps to keep bones strong.

Other sources of plant estrogens are red clover and flaxseed. Both are available as supplements.

Black cohosh is a Native American herb that is useful in preventing hot flushes and insomnia and vaginal dryness, which are usually associated with menopause.

Ayurveda and menopause:

Like other Complementary systems, specific ayurvedic herbs are used for different female types.  Some of the useful herbs used in ayurveda are Aloe gel, Shatavari, Saffron, Kapikacchu, Ashwagandha, and these are taken in milk decoctions. Shatavari and Aloe gel are useful to maintain the youthfulness of the females.  Chavanaprash is another great rejuvenating remedy.

Homeopathic options in menopause:

A good homeopath can ameliorate many distressing symptoms by choosing the correct constitutional remedy. Few remedies are listed here, which are commonly used.

Belladonna

This remedy is useful for hot flushes with throbbing sensation in the head. This remedy suits women who have short bursts of anger and a craving form lemons and lemonade.

Calcarea carbonica

This remedy may be helpful to a woman who has severe heat sweats and weight gain during menopause. Such women usually crave for eggs and sweets also.

Graphites

This remedy suits a woman who is chilly, pale, and sluggish. Such women are prone to obesity in menopause. These women are also prone to eczema.

 Ignatia

Ignatia is a useful remedy for mood swings during menopause.

 Lachesis

This remedy is useful in intense hot flashes with red or purplish flushing, palpitations, and feelings of pressure, congestion and constriction. Such women tend to be very talkative, with jealousy and suspicion.

Natrum muriaticum

This remedy suits women who are over sensitive, who craves for salts and have severe headaches after going out in the sun.

Pulsatilla

This remedy suits weepy women with changeable moods. Such women feel better in the open air.

Sepia

This remedy suits women who are weary and lose interest in day-to-day tasks during menopause.

 Staphysagria

This remedy suits mild mannered women who have menopausal problems such as depression. It helps women who have been abused and many suppressed emotions.  .

Conclusion:

The cure of menopausal symptoms need life-style changes that include, regular exercise, yoga, meditation and switching to a healthy diet that is more vegetarian in nature.

References and links:

www.medscape.com

www.herbalremediesinfo.com.

www.peacehealth.org.

www.steadyhealth.com.

Integration of Complementary Therapies in Geriatric Care.


Introduction:

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) is catching the attention of older adults and health care givers alike. Complementary medicine often is gentler, safer and addresses the health conditions of the elderly in a holistic manner. All Alternative therapy practitioners aim to encourage good health practices in their elderly patients so that the immunity is boosted, healing ability of the body is strengthened and the elder are benefited way beyond mere symptom management.

Often, the Alternative therapists act like friends, philosophers and guides to the elderly and care for their body, mind and soul.  Alternative therapists spend more time with their patients and give them the attention that the elderly lack.  They encourage self-care, provide knowledge, skills and the encouragement the elderly need during illness.

Alternative therapies are not without risks in the elderly:

Complementary therapies can sometimes be risky in the elderly.

  • An injudicious choice of herbal remedies can create a host of problems for the elderly. The pharmaco-kinetics of herbs can be extremely unpredictable in the elderly.
  • There could be herb-to-herb interactions.
  • Some elderly patients can develop what is called as ‘Serotonin Syndrome’ while taking St. John’s wort.  St. John’s wort is a commonly used herbal anti-depressant. The symptoms of the ‘Serotonin Syndrome’ mimic an infection and thus can be mistreated.
  • Ginseng a very popular rejuvenation tonic can cause a potentially life threatening skin rash called as Steven-Johnson syndrome.
  • Ginkgo biloba, which is used in the elderly for memory loss has anti-coagulant like effects.
  • Massage and manipulation therapies are very dangerous and can lead to severe sprains or even fractures in the elderly because they have a poor muscle mass and osteoporosis.
  • Sometimes, the vital force of the elderly patients is low and trying Complementary medicines such as Homeopathy may be fruitless and frustration both for the patient and the physician.
  • Spiritual healing is another controversial subject. Sometimes Christian patients take offense to Hindu Reiki practitioners and vice versa. So great care should be taken in choosing a therapist, so that we do not hurt the spiritual sentiments of the elderly patients.

Conclusion:

It is very important to find out if the elderly patients are taking any complementary therapy before starting another one for them. Elderly patients often have very poor memories and extra efforts must be made to elicit a proper history. Extra time must also be spent if some pharmacological prescriptions are written and care should be taken to see that the proper dose is taken at the proper time.

Time must be spent explaining about possible side effects.  Often, the elderly are in touch with similarly afflicted patients of their age and may have surfed the Internet and they may have erroneous beliefs. The Alternative therapist should take all the precaution and make every effort to answer all questions sincerely, as truthfully and tactfully as possible.

Some of the elderly may not have adequate insurance or financial resources and in these cases every effort must be taken to prescribe safer and cheaper medications.

Navigating thorough the maze of Alternative therapy options can be very challenging both for the physician and the elderly patient with multiple health conditions. Both the Alternative physician and the patient should realize that they should adopt a flexible approach and weigh the pros and cons of conventional versus Complementary therapy so that the most appropriate system of medicine is used at the most appropriate time during the care of the geriatric patient.

References:

McCaleb RS, Leigh E, Morien K. The Encyclopedia of Popular Herbs: Your Complete Guide to the Leading Medicinal Plants. Roseville, Calif: Prima Publishing; 2000.

Krohn J, Taylor FA. Finding the Right Treatment. Modern and Alternative Medicine: A Comprehensive Reference Guide That Will Help You Get the Best of Both Worlds. Point Roberts, Wash: Hartley & Marks Publishers; 2002.

Huebscher R, Shuler PA. Natural, Alternative, and Complementary Health Care Practices. St. Louis: Mosby; 2004.

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.

www.medscape.com.

Celebrities are turning into Vegetarians and Vegans.

Introduction:

Did you know that several celebrities are vegetarians or vegans? Some of the famous vegans are Alicia Silverstone, Brian Adams, Eric Roberts the actor, Fiona Apple the singer, Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran and Natalie Portman the famous actor.

Some of most famous vegetarians include Albert Einstein; Aristotle the famous Greek philosopher, Billie Jean King and Chris Evert the famous tennis stars of the yesteryears, Dr. Dean Ornish and many others.

 One the most articulate advocates of vegetarianism is Tobey Maguire and he said that, ’I don’t like eating dead carcasses pumped full of chemicals and hormones. It’s not a moral thing. It’s logical to me not to eat that shit, since I would get nauseated.’  Tobey Maguire doesn’t mince words when it comes to his food and lifestyle choices

With more and more studies coming out in recent times supporting a vegetarian way of life, the eternal debate rages on whether vegetarianism is indeed superior to a non-vegetarian diet.

Types of vegetarians:

There are three types of vegetarian:

  1. The Vegans are the strictest type of vegetarians and they will not eat animal food or produce. They live entirely on plant foods. They take pulses, nuts, grains, fruits and vegetables. 
  2.  Vegetarian who drink milk and eggs. These are called, asLacto-Vegetarians will not eat animal flesh. They will, however, eat animal produce such as milk, cheese, eggs and four main groups.
  3. Vegetarians who take eggs only.  These are called asLacto-ovo-vegetarians will not eat animal flesh but will eat eggs in their diet.

Advantages of a vegetarian diet:

  • Vegetarian diets are high in: vitamin C, fiber and folate.
  • Vegetarian diets are low in: calcium, protein, iron, zinc and vitamin B-12
  • It is possible to obtain all essential nutrients by eating a completely plant-based diet; however proper dietary planning is critical to the health.
  • Vegetarian diets are typically higher in fiber, lower in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol.
  • Vegetarians typically have less risk of CHD, cancer, obesity, high cholesterol and hypertension.
  • Vegetarian lifestyles are usually healthier because of lesser smoking, more exercise and less alcohol ingestion.

Disadvantages of a vegetarian diet:

Some nutritional authorities feel that Vegetarians (vegans) find it difficult to get certain nutrients like:

  • Vitamin B-12. These are found more in fortified cereals and soy products
  • Vitamin D.  Soymilk and cereals are rich sources.
     
  • Iron & zinc. These are found in whole grain, soy foods, beans, dried foods, nuts and seeds.

  • Calcium. Good sources are cereals, juices, beans, tofu, soy foods, figs and other dried fruits.


Conclusion:

Slowly the wheel is turning in favor of vegetarianism.  According to a statistics from the recentConsumer Attitudes to Food Standards Survey, 4% of households reportedly contained at least one vegetarian member. 5% contained at least one person who ate no meat, but did eat fish.

Some authorities on nutrition do not recommend a vegan diet for very young children because it is very difficult for them consume pulses, cereals nuts etc and achieve optimal growth without consuming animal products.

FACTS ABOUT NUTRITION IN MEAT.

Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet. — Albert Einstein

Introduction:

The facts supporting vegetarianism are overwhelming. Some health authorities feel that one-day humankind will wake up and will look back in horror at their own carnivorous and murderous habits. Animal eating is considered just one step below cannibalism.

Some interesting facts:

  • In 1961, the “Journal of the American Medical Association” reported that a vegetarian diet could prevent 90-97% of heart diseases.
  • Studies reveal 59% less cancer among people who eat small amounts of meat, compared to average meat-eaters.  (Imagine how much better those figures would be when compared to vegetarians.)
  • Scotland has the highest rate of bowel cancer in the world and they eat 20% more meat than the English.
  • The kidneys of the meat-eater must work three times harder than the kidneys of the vegetarian.
  • Although meat needs to pass through the digestive tract quickly, it takes four times longer than grains or vegetables.
  • During World War I, Norway and Denmark could not get meat. The death rate dropped 17% and then returned to normal when they returned to their meat diets.
  • The American National Institute of Health, in a study of 50,000 vegetarians, found that they live longer, have far less heart disease, and a much lower cancer rate compared to meat-eaters.1
  • In England, vegetarians pay less for life insurance.
  • Studies show that vegetarians are stronger, more agile, have greater endurance, and recover from fatigue faster than meat-eaters.
  • A Yale University study revealed that vegetarians have nearly twice the stamina of meat-eaters.2
  • Cornell University announced through major newspapers in May of 1990, “Humans are natural vegetarians.” The report said: “Animal foods, in general, are not really helpful and we need to get away from eating them.”  “In addition to reducing the risk of heart disease, low cholesterol also protects against colon cancer, the most common life-threatening cancer among Americans.”
  • World starvation is well connected to meat-eating habits. If Americans stopped feeding grain to cattle, the excess grain could feed 500 million people (not to mention the land that could be used to grow food instead of being used for grazing cattle). When people see those programs on TV about all the starving children, they should consider that their diets are a contributing factor. 

Even milk is under the scanner:

Contrary to popular beliefs, pasteurized milk, like meat, drains the body of alkaline and electrolyte minerals.  Milk that has been cooked (pasteurized) takes more calcium to digest than it gives back!

Conclusion:

Recognize meat for what it really is:  the antibiotic- and pesticide-laden corpse of a tortured animal.  ~Ingrid Newkirk, National Director of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

Gleaned from:

Chemistry of Food and Nutrition, by Sherman, H., Macmillan Co., NY 1952, pg. 208.

The Science of Nutrition, Sherman, H., Columbia University Press, NY, 1943, pg. 177-198

The importance of sunshine in your life.

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air…”
 Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Introduction:

North of the equator, where sunshine is poor during prolonged winter periods, researchers estimate that increasing intake of vitamin D3 could prevent 250,000 cases of colorectal cancer and 350,000 cases of breast cancer worldwide.

According to Philippe Autier, MD, and Sara Gandini, PhD, from the International Agency for Research on Cancer in Lyon, France said that,  “Ecological and observational studies suggest that low vitamin D status could be associated with higher mortality from life-threatening conditions including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes mellitus that account for 60% to 70% of total mortality in high-income countries.

It a statistical observation that over 600,000 cases of breast and colorectal cancers could be prevented each year, if vitamin D3 levels among populations worldwide were increased. (Source: researchers from the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego – UCSD).
That means that nearly 150,000 cases of cancer that could be prevented in the United States alone.

To increase your vitamin D3 levels, the researchers recommended a combination of dietary methods, supplements and sunlight exposure of about 10 to 15 minutes a day, with at least 40 percent of your skin exposed.

Vitamin D:

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, which behaves like a hormone, regulating the formation of bone and the absorption of calcium and phosphorus from the intestine. It helps to control the movement of calcium between bone and blood, and vice versa.

In infancy and childhood, deficiency of vitamin D causes the deformed bones characteristic of rickets.  In adults a lack of the vitamin causes a softening of the bones known as osteomalacia.  Deficiency is seen more often in northern countries, or where tradition dictates that the body is well covered by clothes, Deficiency is also common among women in the parts of the Islamic world, where the burqua or the veil is a custom.

An excess of the vitamin can cause loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea, headache, depression and deposits of calcium in the kidneys.

Requirements For Vitamin D:

It has been found that bone loss in post menopause women occurs mostly in the winter due to falling levels of vitamin D products in the blood.  A winter intake from fortified foods or supplements is strongly recommended to promote bone health. Winter intakes of about 15µg (micrograms) per day appear to be enough to prevent bone loss

Vegans and Vitamin D.
 Vegans usually obtain vitamin D from the action of sunlight on the skin or by taking fortified foods such as Soya milk, margarine), breakfast cereals and vitamin supplement, which are made from yeast or other fungi.  Bright sunlight is not essential for Vitamin D synthesis by the body.  Even sunshine on a cloudy summer day will stimulate formation of some D in the skin, while a short summer holiday in the open air will increase blood levels of the vitamin by two or three times the amount.

Vegans generally obtain adequate amounts of Vitamin D, if they spend time outdoors in spring, summer and autumn. In winter, vegans can increase their Vitamin D levels by natural fortified supplements.  Vegan women who are breast-feeding should ensure that they take foods rich in vitamin D.

References and Links:

Arch Intern Med. 2007; 167:1709-1710, 1730-1737.

www.medscape.com.

 www.mercola.com.

www.vegansociety.com.

ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES FOR A BENIGN PROSTATE ENLARGEMENT.

Introduction:

Josh Billings said that, quote, ‘In youth we run into difficulties; in old age difficulties run into us’.Unquote. That is so true of old age. As we grow older, our sight dims, we have arthritis, memory problems and so on.  But one of the most disturbing symptoms that my older male patients face is an increasing frequency of overnight visits to the bathroom. They wake a lot more than they used to and they have a poor stream of urine, sometimes there is urgency and then an irritating hesitancy when they think that they might actually wet their pants. Sometimes there is even a leaking of urine with dribbling.  All these usually point to a benign enlargement of the prostrate.  Of course, we run all the tests to rule out urinary infections and prostate cancer and finally the urosurgeon advices an operation.  This is when panic sets in and they want to avoid surgery.

The Allopathic medical line of treatment:

For those who do not want surgery there are tablets that shrink the prostate. Some of them approved by the US FDA are Finasteride and dutasteride, these tablets work by inhibiting the production of the hormone DHT, which is involved with prostate enlargement. The use of either of these drugs can either prevent progression of growth of the prostate or actually shrink the prostate in some men.  Other drugs that shrink the prostate are terazosin and tamsulosin. These drugs act by reducing the bladder outlet obstruction and help the elderly to urinate properly

There is safer and natural alternative:

1) Saw palmetto is an herb that has been shown in clinical studies to have an important role in maintaining a healthy prostate.  Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens) grows naturally in the southeast United States, including Georgia, Mississippi, and particularly Florida.

When it is extracted in Homeopathy as a mother tincture, it is called as Sabal serrulata Q.  Several small studies suggest that saw palmetto may be effective for treating BPH symptoms although many allopathic physicians are skeptical whether this mother tincture actually reduces the prostate size in a benign prostate enlargement.

2) Pygeum is another herb that is found useful in France. In France, this herb is found in over 75 percent of all doctors’ prescriptions for enlarged prostate. Doctors report that the herb reduces symptoms in at least half of the men who try it, and it does so in less than six weeks. But it is not as effective in cases of severe prostate enlargement. The recommended dose is 100 or 200 mg capsules once a day or in two divided doses.

3) Nettle leaves have long been known as an excellent diuretic and are used to stop the urine retention that often accompanies prostate inflammation. It is useful for mild prostate enlargement and patients with mild prostate enlargement who took nettle root found that their symptoms disappeared within three weeks of therapy.

4) Pumpkin seeds contain abundant amounts of b-sitosterol, a hormone like substance known to reduce prostate inflammation. These natural herbs also contain isoflavones such as genistein and daidzein, phytosterols such as sitosterol, and carotenoids and these are said to help in reducing prostate inflammation.

My recommendations in Homeopathy:

I find that in the beginning of a prostate enlargement Sabal Serrulata 3x potency is better than Sabal Serrulata Q. I suggest 15 drops in a Luke warm porcelain cup of water to be taken twice daily for 5 to 6 months. At 3x potency the efficacy of the medicine is better.

 I normally follow it up with Ferrum Picricum 200. I prefer 30 size pills and recommend 2 to 3 globules thrice a day. Ferrum Picricum suits elderly patients who are restless who have burning in the urine with enlarged prostate.

Another remedy that I use inter-currently is Chimaphila Umbrellata. I prefer this remedy in the 30 or 200 potency and I use 30 size pills and I advise the patient to try this for 3 to 4 months. This remedy is very good for enlarged prostate with irritation in the bladder.

Other useful remedies may be Thuja, Mercury, Cantharis and Staphisagria, just to name a few.