Prostate Cancer BREAKTHROUGH: Three natural substances destroy cancer cells

Source: TheHealthRanger
June 30, 2017

Breakthrough research finds that prostate cancer cells are destroyed by a combination of three natural compounds found in a fruit peel, a berry skin and a root tuber. These three anti-cancer nutrients are safe, affordable and readily available to everyone. So why isn’t the entire medical industry talking about this prostate cancer breakthrough? Because there’s NO MONEY to be made from making people well using low-cost anti-cancer foods and plants. Stay informed at

Natural Alternatives to Deadly Prescription Opiates

Natural Alternatives to Deadly Prescription Opiates
GMI Research Group
July 23, 2017

Prescription drugs kill nearly fifteen times as many Americans per year than the casualty toll of domestic terrorist attacks from over thirteen years combined, but still natural alternatives are suppressed and maligned despite a growing body of evidence supporting their far greater safety and efficacy. 

Since 1997, when the United States became one of only two developed nations that allows direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising, addiction to prescription drugs and prescription drug overdoses have quadrupled (Real Leaders, 2016). In fact, last year, deaths due to prescription drug overdoses surpassed 50,000 per year, dwarfing the number of deaths due to motor vehicle accidents (37,757) and to gun violence (36,252) (Chicago Tribune, 2016).

Especially culpable are synthetic opioids, a class of central nervous system depressants such as tranquilizers, sedatives, and pain relievers, which claimed a death toll of 9,580 people in 2016, representing a 73% increase (Chicago Tribute, 2016). Although abuse of prescription painkillers such as Vicodin and OxyContin only increased by 4%, they took the largest toll, killing 17,536 (Chicago Tribune, 2016). In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that for the first time in twenty years, the nation’s life expectancy declined, and cited drug overdoses as a significant contributing factor (Chicago Tribune, 2016).

Although the hyper-politicized war on terror receives far more publicity, prescription drugs kill nearly fifteen times as many Americans per year than the casualty toll of domestic terrorist attacks from over thirteen years combined (Real Leaders, 2016). Rather than stemming from an illicit transaction on a dimly lit street corner with an unscrupulous character, eighty percent of opioid addictions originate from a stethoscope-wearing, prescription-pad wielding physician dispensing legitimate prescriptions for pain medication (Real Leaders, 2016). Furthermore, instead of being distributed via drug trafficking rings commandeered by international drug lords, the opioids are manufactured in pristine labs by Big Pharma, with legal sanction from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) (Tough, 2001).

How Big Pharma Engineered an Epidemic of Opioid Addiction

Much of this is due to a Stamford, Connecticut-based pharmaceutical company, Purdue Pharma, which introduced the opioid analgesic OxyContin, a sustained-release oxycodone preparation, onto the market in 1995. A close cousin of other opium derivatives such as heroin, morphine, fentanyl, methadone, and codeine, OxyContin was developed in a German laboratory in 1916 (Tough, 2001). Its sales ballooned from $48 million dollars in its first year to $3.1 billion a decade later, with over 14 billion prescriptions being dispensed in 2001 and 2002, leading Purdue to corner nearly one-third of the painkiller market (Mariani, 2015; Van Zee, 2009).

One of the three founding brothers of Purdue Pharma, Arthur Sackler, was one of the first pharmaceutical advertisers to cultivate reciprocity relationships with doctors to incentivize physicians to prescribe the drugs they promoted, a model which would later become the modus operandi for the entire pharmaceutical industry (Mariani, 2015). Although OxyContin offered no advantage over its opioid relatives, an aggressive marketing campaign in excess of $200 million pursued by Pharma led to its dominance in the market (Van Zee, 2009).

Purdue employed perfidious tactics such as compiling databases of the highest and least discriminate opioid prescribers and targeting reps to frequent those health care professionals (Van Zee, 2009). According to Van Zee (2009), “A lucrative bonus system encouraged sales representatives to increase sales of OxyContin in their territories, resulting in a large number of visits to physicians with high rates of opioid prescriptions, as well as a multifaceted information campaign aimed at them”. In a single year alone, Purdue paid out over $40 million in sales bonuses to its pharmaceutical reps (General Accounting Office, 2003).

Purdue likewise recruited medical practitioners to attend all-expenses-paid symposia at luxury resorts, a practice which has been demonstrated to influence physician prescribing habits, and initiated a redeemable starter coupon program to supply patients with a free limited-time prescription (General Accounting Office, 2003; Orlowski & Wateska, 1992). Further, according to the DEA, Purdue undertook concerted efforts to distribute branded promotional items to health care providers at an unprecedented rate (General Accounting Office, 2003).

Deliberate Distortion of Statistics Prompts Over-prescribing of Opioids

Purdue similarly encouraged the liberal prescription of opioids by primary care physicians (PCPs), despite expert concerns that PCPs were not qualified to evaluate and manage complex pain management (Tough, 2001). According to Mariani (205), “It would become one of Purdue’s preeminent missions to make primary care doctors less judicious when it came to handing out OxyContin prescriptions”.

Despite lack of scientific consensus in the use of opioids for non-cancer related pain, and results of prospective, randomized trials demonstrating “only small to modest improvement in pain relief, with no consistent improvement in physical functioning” in non-terminal pain cases, Purdue forcefully targeted the non-malignant pain market to capture new markets, leading to an approximate tenfold increase in OxyContin prescriptions for chronic pain from 670,000 in 1997 to 6.2 million in 2002 (Van Zee, 2009).

Not only did they mobilize efforts toward physician prescribing, but they also generously donated to patient advocacy organizations such as the American Chronic Pain Association, the American Pain Foundation, and the National Foundation for the Treatment of Pain, in order to transform the negative rhetoric surrounding opiate use. Purdue likewise launched a public education program called Partners Against Pain to expand and secure the opioid market and to enhance their bottom line (Tough, 2001). In fact, “From 1996 through July 2002, Purdue funded more than 20,000 pain-related educational programs through direct sponsorship or financial grants, 19 providing a venue that had enormous influence on physicians’ prescribing throughout the country” (Van Zee, 2009).

Pivotally, according to Van Zee (2009), “A consistent feature in the promotion and marketing of OxyContin was a systematic effort to minimize the risk of addiction in the use of opioids for the treatment of chronic non–cancer-related pain,” citing an extremely small risk of addiction in their brochures and promotional material. Purdue cherry-picked studies and taught their reps to reference a low diversion potential and less than one percent addiction rate; however, literature reviews have elucidated that the prevalence of addiction varies from 0% to 50% according to the criteria employed and cohort studied (Hojsted & Sjogren, 2007).

While addiction prevalence rates vary, Reid and colleagues (2002) found prescription opioid abuse in 24% to 31% of non-cancer chronic pain patients. Katz and colleagues (2003), on the other hand, found drug abuse in 43% of patients maintained on chronic opioid therapy. Another study at the Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Center in Seattle showed that 34% of pain clinic patients using chronic opiates met abuse criteria (Chabal et al., 1997). In addition, a retrospective study of 470 patients in a pain management program highlighted that 45% had abnormal urine screens, indicating opioid abuse (Michna et al., 2007).

Purdue’s deceptive sales tactics led to over 300 lawsuits concerning OxyContin to be filed against their company as of 2003 (General Accounting Office, 2003). The fraudulent misrepresentation of addiction rates led to Purdue Pharma and its affiliate to plead guilty to criminal charges of misbranding and to pay $634 million in fines (Van Zee, 2009).

Recreational OxyContin Use Overtakes Broad Swaths of the Country

Drug abuse escalated with the increasing commercial success and accessibility of OxyContin, as “drug abusers learned how to simply crush the controlled-release tablet and swallow, inhale, or inject the high-potency opioid for an intense morphine-like high” (Van Zee, 2009). As described by one user in Paul Tough’s 2001 New York Times piece, “The Alchemy of OxyContin,” “’When you get that oxy buzz, it’s a great feeling. You’re happy. Your body don’t hurt. Nothing can bring you down. It’s a high to where you don’t have to think about nothing. All your troubles go away. You just feel like everything is lifted off your shoulders.’’

Prescribing practices differed by geographical area, with patients in Alabama, Maine, West and southwestern Virginia, and Eastern Kentucky being prescribed Oxycontin at five to six times the national average (DEA, 2000). In addition to rural Maine and the rust-belt counties of eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania, the Appalachian area of Virginia, West Virginia, and Eastern Kentucky were disproportionately hit, so much so that in 2015 Purdue agreed to pay Kentucky $24 million in a civil lawsuit accusing the drugmaker of misleading doctors and patients about their blockbuster drug, leading to an epidemic of addiction, especially among coal miners who were prescribed OxyContin (CBS News, 2015; Tough, 2001). The qualities uniting these areas include dismal economic opportunity, high unemployment rates, histories of prescription drug abuse, possessing large populations of disabled people, having little access to rehabilitation clinics, and being “far from the network of Interstates and metropolises through which heroin and cocaine travel” (Tough, 2001).

Although once labeled “hillbilly heroin” and confined to remote locales, OxyContin abuse began to spread nationally, and by 2004, became the most recreationally used prescription opioid in the United States (Cicero, Inciardi, & Munoz, 2005). The liberalization of prescription opioid use for non-malignant pain led to skyrocketing availability and rates of abuse in other opioids as well. Van Zee (2009) reports that there was a 402%, 226%, and 73% increase in oxycodone, fentanyl, and morphine prescribing between 1997 and 2002, with 641%, 346%, and 113% increases in hospital emergency department mentions of fentanyl, oxycodone, and morphine, respectively, during the same time period (Gilson et al., 2004). By 2002, national deaths from prescription opioid overdoses eclipsed those of heroin and cocaine (Paulozzi, Budnitz, & Yongli, 2006).

Alarmingly, despite only comprising five percent of the global population, America uses 85% of all opioids worldwide (Real Leaders, 2016). With recent increased government regulation, the opioid epidemic has morphed and evolved: “Like a shrewd virus that mutates once it confronts a vaccine, Americans’ addiction to opioids has survived the government crackdown on OxyContin and fled to the seedy asylum of heroin. It’s a kind of evolution in retrograde, with pill users turning to an old 20th-century scourge that once flourished in urban decay and is uglier, more stigmatized, and more lethal than its pharmaceutical counterpart” (Mariani, 2015).

A Complete Paradigm Shift is Needed

Because the for-profit medical enterprise operates on corporate monopoly and revolves around publicly traded pharmaceutical companies, maximizing shareholder profits, rather than promoting wellness, is their primary objective. Big Pharma counts on a perpetual cycle of future revenue by selling drugs which engender new symptoms and create lifetime users.

Thus, the enemy of our disease management system, which centers around chemical magic-bullet cocktails, is open-source, biocompatible, freely extracted and accessible botanical medicine, since the medical-pharmaceutical industrial complex is based on intellectual property control over synthetic, patentable medications.

As published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 106,000 hospitalized patients die each year from the properly prescribed used of medications due to adverse drug events, excluding “errors in drug administration, noncompliance, overdose, drug abuse, therapeutic failures, and possible ADRs [adverse drug reactions]” (Lazarou, Pomeranz, & Corey, 1998). Serious ADRs occur in 6.7% of hospitalized patients, and in 1994, ADRs represented between the fourth and sixth leading cause of death (Lazarou et al., 1998).

Likewise, because opioids are inconsistent in efficacy and have well-characterized side effect profiles, including gastrointestinal distress, sedation, respiratory depression, hormonal and immunological toxicity, opioid-induced hyperalgesia, and a high incidence of abuse, addiction, and fatal overdose, a more natural approach is warranted (Ballantyne, 2006).

Evidence-Based Natural Analgesics

As indexed in GreenMedInfo’s extensive databases, there are a wide array of natural, non-toxic, scientifically validated botanical and nutraceutical agents that can be substituted in place of potentially lethal pharmaceutical poisons.

Zingiberaceae family

For instance, members of the Zingiberaceae family, including turmeric (Curcuma longa), ginger (Zingiber officinale), and galangal (Alpinia galanga), have long been analgesic staples in traditional medical systems. A systematic review and meta-analysis from the Journal of Nutrition found that Zingiberaceae extracts were effective in reducing subjective chronic pain, with a dose-response relationship emerging (Lakhan, Ford, & Tepper, 2015). The authors conclude, “Our findings indicated that Zingiberaceae extracts are clinically effective hypoalgesic agents and the available data show a better safety profile than non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs” (Lakhan et al., 2015).

Gingerol and zingerone, the primary active anti-inflammatory constituents in ginger, modulate production of inflammatory leukotrienes and prostaglandins and inhibit NF-κB (Lantz et al., 2007; Hsiang et al., 2013; Thomson et al., 2002). For example, a systemic review of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) demonstrated that ginger powder, administered during the first three to four days of the menstrual cycle, is effective for dysmenorrhea (Daily et al., 2015). Other studies have shown that ginger exerts analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects in delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) induced by eccentric exercise, or physical exertion to which athletes were unaccustomed (Hoseinzadeh et al., 2015).

Curcuminoids, on the other hand, which are polyphenol derivatives of the spice turmeric, may reduce pain through ATP-sensitive potassium channels and through both opioid and non-opioid mediated mechanisms (De Paz-Campos et al., 2012; Tajik, Tamaddonfard, & Hamzeh-Gooshchi, 2007). In addition, one of the pleiotropic actions of curcumin is to down-regulate nuclear factor (NF)-κB and cyclooxygenase 2 (Cox-2), preventing the expression of inflammatory eicosanoid pain mediators (Sandur et al., 2007; Samad & Abdi, 2001). Another systematic review and meta-analysis of eight RCTs, including 606 patients, elucidated that curcuminoids have been found to significantly reduce pain independent of the dose administered or the duration of treatment (Sahebkar & Henrotin, 2015). For example, pilot human trials have shown efficacy in improving symptoms of both rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease (Chandran & Goel, 2012; Holt, Katz, & Kirschoff, 2005). Curcumin has also been shown to prevent and mitigate diabetic mellitus and its complications, including diabetic neuropathic pain, by reversing abnormalities in voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) in neurons of the injured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) (Meng et al., 2015).

Boswellia serrata

The gum resin extracted from the bark of a traditional Ayurvedic medicine, Boswellia serrata or Indian frankincense, is a potent anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and anti-arthritic agent (Basch et al., 2004). According to Prahavathi et al. (2014), “Its main pharmacologically active ingredients are α and β boswellic acid and other pentacyclic triterpenic acids which have been shown to inhibit pro-inflammatory processes by their effects on 5-lipooxygenase, cyclo-oxygenase and the complement system”. In particular, the boswellic acid acetyl-11-keto-β-boswellic acid (AKBA) inhibits 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX), a crucial catalyst in the inflammatory cascade (Ernst, 2008). Researchers go so far as to suggest that Boswellia serrata extract (BSE) is a viable alternative to NSAIDs (Abdel-Tawab, Werz, & Schubert-Zsilavecz, 2011).

Boswellia has been shown to significantly increase pain threshold and pain tolerance compared to placebo, and proprietary Boswellia extracts have significantly improved pain scores and functional ability in osteoarthritis subjects after just seven days of supplementation (Sengupta et al., 2010; Prahavathi et al., 2014). Researchers corroborated their human findings with in vitro data showing that Boswellia gum resins inhibit the cartilage degrading enzyme matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-3 and reduce inflammation via suppression of cell adhesion molecule ICAM-1 (Sengupta et al., 2010).

Medical Marijuana as an Opioid Alternative

Cannabis sativa contains approximately one hundred distinct cannabinoids, which influence the endogenous endocannabinoid system, and thus modulate mood, social behavior, cognition, motor function, and perception of pain (Wei, 2017; Steafano, Liu, & Goligorsky, 1996). CB1 receptors are largely localized in regions of the brain that control higher executive functions, motor functions, and nociception, meaning the response of the sensory nervous system to pain (Pertwee, 1997). In contrast, CB2 cannabinoid receptors are found predominantly in non-neuronal tissue, such as on immune cells, where they govern immunosuppression and inhibit neurotransmission of pain (Pertwee, 1997; Pertwee, 2001).

According to Pertwee (2010), there is potent evidence in animal models that cannabinoids can induce antinociception in acute and tonic pain models by activating CB1 receptors in the amygdala, periaqueductal grey, thalamus, superior colliculus, and both the rostral ventromedial medulla and A5 noradrenergic group of the brainstem. In fact, there is proof that these receptors co-localize with substance P and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), both of which function in the transmission of pain and neuroinflammation (Pertwee, 2010). Another mechanism by which cannabinoids may inhibit pain is via inhibition of inflammatory eicosanoid release by activation of CB2 receptors on immune cells located in the vicinity of nociceptive neurons. For instance, CB2 may inhibit mast cell degranulation and liberation of inflammatory agents or favorably influence expression of anti-inflammatory agents (Molina-Holgado et al., 1999).

A systemic review of randomized controlled trials examining the use of cannabis in non-cancer chronic pain, including patients with neuropathic pain, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, mixed chronic pain, and neuropathic pain, demonstrated a significant improvement in pain and often sleep compared to placebo (Lynch & Campbell, 2009). Another comprehensive meta-analysis of inhaled cannabis supports its efficacy in the short-term treatment of neuropathic pain, and in his survey of randomized controlled trial results, Aggarwal champions its long-term medical use for chronic pain conditions (Andreae et al., 2015; Aggarwal, 2013).

In fact, in 2014, the Italian government authorized use of cannabis for “for all chronic pain conditions, as well as for spasticity, cachexia, and anorexia among AIDS and cancer patients, ocular hypertension in glaucoma, the alleviation of spasms in Tourette syndrome, and some types of epilepsy” and even dedicated its Military Chemical-Pharmaceutical Factory to cultivate lower-cost cannabis (Fanelli et al., 2017). An explorative retrospective analysis of one of the Italian cohorts of 614 chronic intractable pain patients showed that 64.7% reported improvement associated with cannabis therapy, primarily administered as tea, in association with other pain treatments (Fanelli et al., 2017). The study authors conclude that cannabis therapy is safe and effective, given that no severe side effects were observed, and that 76.2% of patients continued cannabinoid therapy at follow-up (Fanelli et al., 2017).

Importantly, studies have demonstrated that implementation of operational medical marijuana laws, as defined by allowances for active dispensaries or home cultivation, was associated with reductions in opioid positivity among 21- to 40-year-old fatally injured drivers, such that legalizing medical marijuana “may reduce opioid use and overdose” (Kim et al., 2016). This is echoed by an average 13 percent drop in opioid overdoses in states where cannabis has been legalized (Williams, 2017).  Further, analysis of the hospital records in 27 states revealed that hospitalization rates due to painkiller abuse and addiction declined 23 percent on average in states offering medical marijuana (Williams, 2017).

An article in the JAMA Internal Medicine likewise found a 25 percent decrease in opioid deaths in states with legal marijuana (Bachuber et al., 2014). In contrast, marijuana has never been linked to a single fatal overdose (Bachhuber et al., 2014). Moreover, a study illuminated that doctors write 1800 fewer opioid prescriptions for patients per year in medical marijuana states (Bradford & Bradford, 2016). The researchers state, “National overall reductions in Medicare program and enrollee spending when states implemented medical marijuana laws were estimated to be $165.2 million per year in 2013” (Bradford & Bradford, 2014).

Because cannabis has analgesic and immunomodulatory effects and directly interacts with our endogenous pain relief system, it has immense therapeutic promise to replace many of the pharmaceutical toxins that are currently being employed as standards of care.

In addition to the aforementioned natural remedies, there are 125 natural substances with analgesic properties catalogued on the GreenMedInfo database, such as lavender, rose, fennel, magnesium, and cinnamon, any of which would help restore balance and ameliorate pain without the devastating effects of opioids.

Lastly, instead of applying the symptom-suppressive lens of conventional biomedicine and putting band-aids on bullet wounds, it would be prudent for us to address the underlying causes of dysfunction, such as toxicant burden, micronutrient depletion, non-restorative sleep, and deviation from the ancestral lifestyle to which we are evolutionary accustomed.

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Acupuncture found to be a safe and effective alternative to dangerous painkiller drugs in hospitals

Image: Acupuncture found to be a safe and effective alternative to dangerous painkiller drugs in hospitals
Earl Garcia
June 23, 2017

A recent study published in revealed that acupuncture may serve as a safe and effective alternative to pain-relieving drugs for patients arriving at a hospital’s emergency room. As part of the study, a team of researchers led by the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Australia that examined 528 patients with acute low back pain, migraine, or ankle sprains who were rushed to emergency rooms of various hospitals between January 2010 and December 2011.

The participants who rated their pain levels at four out of a 10-point scale received three types of treatment, which involved acupuncture alone, pharmacotherapy alone, or a combination of both. The study revealed that less than 40 percent of patients across all treatment groups reported significant reductions in pain after one hour of treatment, while more than 80 percent continued to have a pain rating of four. However, the research team noted that most patients rated their therapies acceptable after a treatment duration of 48 hours. According to the study, nearly 83 percent of patients in the acupuncture only-group said they would repeat the treatment, compared with only 78.2 percent in the pharmacotherapy-only group, and 80.8 percent in the combination treatment group.

“While acupuncture is widely used by practitioners in community settings for treating pain, it is rarely used in hospital emergency departments. Emergency nurses and doctors need a variety of pain-relieving options when treating patients, given the concerns around opioids such as morphine, which carry the risk of addiction when used long-term. Our study has shown acupuncture is a viable alternative, and would be especially beneficial for patients who are unable to take standard pain-relieving drugs because of other medical conditions. But it’s clear we need more research overall to develop better medical approaches to pain management, as the study also showed patients initially remained in some pain, no matter what treatment they received,” lead researcher Professor Marc Cohen quoted in

“Some Australian emergency departments already offer acupuncture when trained staff are available but further studies are needed on ways to improve pain management overall in emergency departments, and the potential role for acupuncture in this. We need to determine the conditions that are most responsive to acupuncture, the feasibility of including the treatment in emergency settings, and the training needed for doctors or allied health personnel,” Prof. Cohen stated in a separate article in

More studies attesting to how acupuncture relieves pain

The recent study was only one of the many research indicating acupuncture’s efficacy in pain management. In fact, a meta-analysis published last year in revealed that acupuncture was among other complementary health practices that showed favorable results in alleviating common pain. To carry out the analysis, a team of researchers from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health at the National Institutes of Health reviewed 105 U.S.-based randomized controlled trials and identified treatment that will address one or more of five painful conditions including back pain, osteoarthritis, and neck pain as well as fibromyalgia, severe headaches, and migraine.

The research team found that acupuncture was highly effective in treating back pain. The study also revealed that the alternative treatment can be used in alleviating osteoarthritis of the knee. The results offer both patients and health providers information that is necessary for discussing non-drug approaches in pain management, the research team concluded.

Another study published in showed that acupuncture therapy was highly effective in relieving pain and improving the quality of life in patients with fibromyalgia. According to the study, the pain scores of patients who received acupuncture had an average decline of 41 percent at 10 weeks. In contrast, those who received a simulated acupuncture treatment had a 27 percent reduction in pain scores.

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Sources include: 1 2

Why Pharmaceuticals Are Really The “Alternative Medicine”

Why Pharmaceuticals Are Really The
Sayer Ji
May 20, 2017

Did you know that natural medicine was once, and still is, the default medical system on this planet?

In fact, the use of synthetically produced patent medicines (pharmaceuticals) is a relatively recent development (circa 1870), and should really be called the “alternative medicine” vis-a-vis time-tested, far safer approaches that rely on food, spices, and carefully prepared and administered plant extracts.

A powerful new report released by the Kew Gardens in the United Kingdom reveals that there are currently 28,187 plant species recorded as being of medicinal use throughout the world. In addition, the report revealed that fewer than 16% (4,478) of the species used in plant-based medicines are cited in a medicinal regulatory publication.

While the lesser developed countries are the primary users of plant medicines, they are used in great abundance throughout the world. Even in countries like Germany where conventional, drug-based medicine is the default approach, about 90% of their population also uses herbal medicines. Even the most pharmaceutically obsessed country in the world, the United States, spent 17 billion dollars on traditional herbal medicines in 2000 alone, and the number has grown steadily since then.

It should be noted that mixing plant-based medicines with pharmaceuticals can be dangerous, and as the report points out, many of these plants contain compounds that can cause harm if taken incorrectly. There is also a problem with misnaming or multiple names for the same plant-based medicines::


The report also pointed out that…

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It Begins With Information | #BigFood #Health

It Begins With Information

Charles Eisenstein
April 19, 2017

When I first discovered the world of holistic health and nutrition, and saw the ignorance from whence I had come, I thought my health problems would be gone forever. It would be easy — all I needed to do was to implement the information I was discovering.

This was the formula I’d learned in school. Find the answer, and the problem is solved. Do what you are told. I’d been told the wrong information, but now I’d discovered the right.

Perhaps the reader has also experienced that rush of excitement, and that fresh surge of motivation that follows it. Finally, the answer! It’s blue-green algae! Lions mane mushrooms! Far infrared sauna! Vitamin D supplementation! Structured water! Negative ions! Adaptogenic herbs! High-intensity short duration exercise! Alkalizing the blood! Omega-3 fatty acids! Veganism. Paleo. Raw. Fasting….

Yes, it wasn’t long before I encountered a problem: Information overload. No one can implement all of these, even if they didn’t sometimes contradict each other (vegan and paleo for instance). At some point one wonders, how many “must have” supplements must I have? A rebelliousness sets in: it isn’t supposed to be so complicated. Should a person have to sift through numerous scientific articles just to be healthy? (Or trust someone to do it for them?) How do we know which expert to trust? In a more innocent time, we trusted the (supposedly) impartial self-correcting mechanisms of scientific publishing. When the flaws in that system are exposed — the influence of money and politics, the quashing of dissent, the institutionalized confirmation bias — then what is left? Whom do we trust, when the old authorities are discredited and so many new ones are vying for our attention, many with a product to sell?

The response I’ve worked with for fifteen years has been to develop inner authority as a way to cut through the fog of so many dubious and contradictory outer authorities. Inner authority is based on sensitivity to, and trust in, the communication coming from the body. That is easier said than done in an age of distraction, in an age of dissociation from the body, and in a society that constantly asks us to surrender our sovereignty to medical, educational, and other authorities. The formula for doing it right that I learned in school — to find the answers out there — is itself part of the problem.

To establish inner authority means to learn to distinguish authentic appetites from desires that come from displaced needs. Needs are displaced when the the thing we really want, the thing that meets the need, is unavailable, whether through circumstance, lack of knowledge, or emotional blockage. The unmet need could be for something like intimacy, meaning, connection to nature, fulfilling work, or adventure. An unmet need generates both discomfort and desire, and that desire often gets channeled onto something — such as junk food, overeating, alcohol, or another addiction — that doesn’t meet the actual need. For example, someone who lacks deep, unconditional self-acceptance might be compelled to frequently give themselves a treat to confirm (on an unconscious level), “Yes, I am a good girl. I am loved.” Or maybe you eat because you are lonely. Or snacking offers a respite from a lite that is just a little intolerable.

This leads to a second reason why finding correct information may only be a first step: Just because you know what to do doesn’t mean you will actually do it. People bring things into their bodies — and their lives — all the time that they know are not good for them. We do things that we have vowed to abstain from, and fail to do what we’ve promised ourselves. Why?

Until we can resolve this question, having the right information will not be enough. Displaced needs explain a lot of it. if the real need is for intimacy, no amount of sugar — which gives a momentary experience of something like intimacy, and momentary relief from the discomfort of it — will be enough to meet that need. You can eat it and eat it, and blame yourself for your weak willpower, but actually it is just that you are trying to meet a need. Maybe the reason it is unmet is that the marriage has become stagnant and real communication has broken down. Maybe secrets and pretenses are in the way of true intimacy. Changing your diet or switching supplements is unlikely to change that. But then maybe you have a breakthrough in your relationship, and voila — the craving goes away. Until then, the sugar is helping to maintain the status quo.

Various addictions usually fit this pattern. Coffee as a substitute for the natural motivation of following a life purpose. Gambling as a substitute for taking bold risks. News addiction as a substitute for a feeling of power and agency. I’m grossly generalizing and simplifying here, but I think you get the idea. You cannot make an addict stop using by telling him that it’s “bad for you.” You cannot make yourself stop that way either. The information is not enough, and neither is the kind of willpower that comes through a regime of threats and incentives.

How then can we identify and meet the displaced needs? How can we know when a food or a practice or a supplement is meeting a real need? And how can we align desire and discipline so that we can choose beneficial things effortlessly, and effortlessly avoid that which harms? The answer to all three of these questions comes from the same fundamental practice. Put simply, the answer is available through the power of attention directed toward the body and its sensory experience. When we can fully receive and integrate the experience of taking something into the body (or into life), then we know it on a body level; we know what it is and what it is not. Then it take no more willpower to decline harmful foods than it does to stop from jamming your thumb into your eye. Because you know, on a body level, that it hurts.

To establish this kind of direct feedback, so that harmful things become repellent and helpful things become attractive, requires integrating body responses over time. It also requires unlearning a lot of habits that seem totally normal in our culture, and bringing into consciousness the unconscious ways in which we avoid feeling.

I give a fuller description of this process in my online course, Dietary Transformation from the Inside Out, including meditations and take-home practices to reprogram new habits over a period of a few weeks. The goal is to establish a kind of ease and freedom, a release of struggle, an aligning of health and pleasure, and a trust in inner authority.

I hope I have not unduly simplified a complex issue in this brief article. Another crucial piece of the puzzle include the ways our culture deadens us to subtle body information and how to recover sensitivity to it. Even more important, perhaps, is the realization that a state of diet is a state of being — something must shift before a person is ready to inhabit a higher level of vitality. If the readiness is there, new health habits are easy to adopt. if it is not, then the energy coming from the miracle supplement or superfood or yoga practice will just be consumed by a correspondingly intensified addictive habit. Maybe you’ll feel great so you’ll drink more to bring you down to an energy level that fits your life right now.

Truly, the journey toward better health leaves no aspect of life untouched.

Of course, none of this means that information from researchers and experts is useless. It is in fact extremely valuable, because it gives the techniques I describe something to operate on. It opens up a new menu of possibilities on which to exercise inner authority.

Furthermore, there is a natural complementarity between the inner, attention-based process I’ve mentioned and the world of natural or holistic health. We sense a kinship between them, because both are part of a transition from a belief system in which well-being comes through the domination or conquest of nature, to one in which nature is our ally and teacher. Both also affirm that health is not a matter of fighting the body — neither imposing pharmaceutical control over it, nor imposing willpower over it based on mental knowledge. Holistic health isn’t about substituting one body of expert opinion for another. It is about reclaiming our power through a return to nature.

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Benefits of Marjoram for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

Dr. Greger
February 17, 2017

DESCRIPTION: Even a small amount of fresh herbs can double or even quadruple the antioxidant power of a meal. The ability of oregano to decrease chromosomal damage from radiation and marjoram to affect hormone levels in women with PCOS is put to the test.

Book Review: Total Chi-Fitness by Sifu William Lee

Zy Marquiez
February 16, 2017

Like Healing Chi Meditation [review here], Total Chi-Fitness by Sifu William Lee is an easy to follow, and yet robust book that discusses the benefits of employing Chi in your daily fitness routine

While Healing Chi Mediation is slightly more complex, Total Chi Fitness is much more simple in its explanation and application.  In fact, its fitness routines are so simple that even an elderly individual could partake in these rather easily.

Lee begins with a short explanation of how the knowledge of Bodhidarma, which lead to many practices such as Tai, Chi, Chi Kung, Acupuncture and more, came to be.  Thence he continues supplying the reader with additional information that explains what Chi – which is what the book is about – is, how it works, general characteristics and much of the exercises and more.

Besides some other added information to help the reader understand additional concepts, Lee suffuses information on how to prepare, ranging from mindset, which is extremely vital and often overlooked, to the importance of breathing, which cannot be overlooked, and more.

In any case, in Total Chi Fitnes, the author Lee provides the reader a veritable fitness routine crash course that gives the reader 18 different exercises, the last two of which are an energy burst workout, composed of four different exercise types, and the last one which has an energy raising technique with two separate positions which help harness chi if employed properly.

This particular book reads rather quickly, and is easy to comprehend and employ.  In fact, my close friend’s grandmother who happens to be have significant health issues and is obese, has no problems doing the exercises provided within this book.

For me personally, am employing the exercises in this book every third day or so, alternating with yoga, regular weight lifting and cardio and it’s become part of my daily routine.

All in all, Total Chi-Fitness helps individuals net great benefits, although it requires a little more time to do the exercises than 5-Minute Chi Boost by the same author.   If 5-Minute Chi Boost is seen as an simple introductory, and yet a worthy energy boosting entry-level exercise book, then Total Chi-Fitness is a slightly more robust, yet not overly-complex book which just builds on similar concepts and rounds them out in salient fashion.

Just thought mentioning each in relation to each other might help the reader narrow down which way they might go.  Either way, both books are high recommended and complement each other rather well.