The Truth About Black Beans

Antihypertensive and antioxidant activity in black beans

Beans are one of the most important crops for the Mexican population due to its nutritional qualities. In fact, the country is one of the top 10 producers of this legume in the world, and several studies have reflected the correlation between consumption and decreased chronic degenerative diseases, cardiovascular diseases, obesity and diabetes. Therefore, the National School of Biological Sciences of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN-ENCB), conducted an investigation to evaluate the antioxidant and antihypertensive activity in the Jamapa variety of black beans, and found that in addition to these qualities, proteins in the bean can remove heavy metals from the body.

Find out more here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/279614.php

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Green Tea Leaves May Give Hope for Dementia

(Green) tea leaves may reveal hope for dementia

Perhaps we should just chug green tea constantly. Research has revealed another power of a cuppa the green stuff: enhanced cognitive function. Researchers from the University of Basel in Switzerland report evidence that green tea extract boosts the brain’s cognitive functions, in particular, the working memory. The findings suggest promising clinical implications for the treatment of cognitive impairments in psychiatric disorders such as dementia. The study was published in the journal Psychopharmacology and noted on sciencedaily.com. Researchers gave healthy male subjects a soft drink containing several grams of green tea extract, then measured their brains with MRIs while they worked on memory tasks. The MRIs showed increased connectivity between different parts of the brain. “Subjects tested significantly better for working memory tasks after the admission of green tea extract,” according to a release from the university.

Find out more here: http://newhope360.com/breaking-news/green-tea-leaves-may-reveal-hope-dementia

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3 Natural Anti-Inflammatory May Provide Relief for Osteoarthritis

A complex of three natural anti-inflammatory agents provides relief of osteoarthritis pain.

Devil’s claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), turmeric (Curcuma longa), and bromelain are nutraceuticals that have demonstrated anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties and may be potential solutions in the treatment of acute or chronic joint pain. Their analgesic effect, however, is generally considered mild to moderate, and the relevance of their clinical use remains subject to discussion. The aim of the study was to evaluate the clinical relevance of the efficacy of a marketed complex of 3 plant extracts-H procumbens, C longa, and bromelain (AINAT, 650 mg)-in the treatment of degenerative joint pain.

Learn more info here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24473984?dopt=Abstract

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Hyssop Against Asthma Symptoms?

Can Hyssop Ease Asthma Symptoms?

Asthma is on the rise, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. As of 2009, one in 12 people in the United States now suffers from this respiratory disorder, compared with one in 14 people in 2001. For help in easing asthma symptoms and enhancing respiratory health, some patients turn to such natural remedies as hyssop (an herb found in the mint family and commonly consumed in tea form). While research on the asthma-fighting effects of hyssop is very limited, a preliminary study published in 2011 found that hyssop extract may aid in asthma treatment. In tests on rats, the study’s authors determined that asthma may help curb asthma-associated inflammation of the airways.

Find out more here: http://altmedicine.about.com/b/2014/04/09/can-hyssop-ease-asthma-symptoms.htm

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Ginseng Warning

Manic Psychosis Associated With Ginseng: A Report of Two Cases and Discussion of the Literature.

This case report discusses the fact that ginseng may be associated with a manic episode. Most people are aware that ginseng adds energy. Given this fact, people with manic-depressive disorder should consider not using ginseng.

However is important to note that the amounts of ginseng used by the patients in the case studies were above the normal level. In the natural health field, more is not always better. In fact, more is rarely better. Many times, I see the most effective herbs are the wild crafted herbs that have not been concentrated.

Oftentimes herbs work much better when they are discontinued  for a time. Your liver will get used to metabolizing the active components of the herbs and over time, they can lose their effectiveness.

Do not abuse herbs and keep to the recommended dose. If you notice any side effects, discontinue their use immediately.

Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24689505?dopt=Abstract


 [JM1]

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Wild Indigo as Your Cold Fighter

Can Wild Indigo Keep You Cold-Free?

woman cold and flu

 

Each year, about one billion cases of the common cold affect adults and children in the United States. To boost their defense against cold-related sneezing, sniffling, cough, and congestion, some people turn an herbal remedy known as wild indigo. Available in supplement form, wild indigo is known to contain arabinogalactans, a type of compound that may help stimulate your immune system. Although research on the health effects of wild indigo is limited, some preliminary studies suggest that it may possess immune-enhancing properties. For example, a report published in the journal Advances in Therapy determined that wild indigo may help improve immune function when taken in combination with echinacea and white cedar leaf tips.

Find out more info here: http://altmedicine.about.com/b/2014/03/13/can-wild-indigo-keep-you-cold-free.htm

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Herb Drug Interactions

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Updates on the Clinical Evidenced Herb-Warfarin Interactions

Herbs are probably the most common natural product that can interact with medications. If you are taking any medication, it is a good idea to check with your pharmacist to see if it can interact with any of the natural products you are taking.

Warfarin a common medication is used as an anticoagulant. Many types of natural products can interact with warfarin. Most people are warned about vitamin K, however a variety of herbs may also interact with warfarin. If you are taking warfarin make sure to check out this table to review any possible interactions with the natural products you are taking.

Herbal medicine can contains strong pharmacologically active elements. Make sure you review with your pharmacist any possible interactions.

Source: http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2014/957362/

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Astralagus Membranaceus to Improve Exercise Performance

Astragalus membranaceus Improves Exercise Performance and Ameliorates Exercise-Induced Fatigue in Trained Mice.

Astragalus membranaceus has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. It is uses a tonic and is thought to improve the functioning of the lungs, adrenal glands, gastrointestinal tract, and help improve fatigue. This above study did find that Astragalus membranaceus did help mice improve their fatigue levels when taking Astragalus membranaceus.

Astragalus membranaceus is one of the 50 fundamental herbs that is used in Chinese medicine. More recently in the news is the extract TA-65 which is known to activate telomerase. Long telomeres are thought to be important to health and long life span.

For the most part Astragalus membranaceus is thought to be a relatively safe herb. People are advised against taking it during pregnancy and breast-feeding and also those who have auto immune diseases as it is thought to help activate the immune system

Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24595275?dopt=Abstract

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Blue Cohosh: Safety of Use

Safety of Blue Cohosh

 

In some Native American tribes, an herb known as blue cohosh has long been used to improve muscle tone in the uterus and treat a variety of women’s health troubles (such as menstrual cramps and PMS). But while preliminary studies suggest that blue cohosh may shield health by reducing inflammation), other research shows that taking this herb while pregnant may raise risk of birth defects. A number of other natural remedies hold promise for enhancing women’s health. For instance, there’s some evidence that consuming soy may slightly lower your risk of breast cancer and build stronger bones to stave off osteoporosis.

Find out more here: http://altmedicine.about.com/b/2014/02/27/260444.htm

 

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Ginger Root for Health

Ginger Root’s Evergreen Offering

 

Ginger root is originates in Asia where using it as a flavoring agent is a practice so ancient, that it even predates historical records.  Medicinal uses by traditional Southeast Asian healers are traced back as far back as 5000 years ago, while the earliest written testimony to the use of ginger as a flavoring agent can be seen in the 4th century Hindu Mahabharata, an epic folk legend.

 

It is unclear where exactly the ginger root stems from but some suspect it may be India. The first western exposure to ginger root came in the 1st century AD when maritime spice trading brought it to the Mediterranean, and by the middle ages it was such a sough-after delicacy that a pound of ginger could buy you a whole sheep! By the 1600’s it had found its way to Africa and the Caribbean but today it has naturalized itself to such an extent through its prolific cultivation through the tropics, that it is now very much a part of these cultures.

 

Ginger Root Medicine in Ancient Times

Since ancient times the inherent “warming” qualities of Ginger have been recognized to hold great medicinal benefit and Ayurvedic healers from India have used the rhizome as a treatment for many ailments over the ages. Even today, these healers still use ginger it to treat:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis,
  • Migraine,
  • Sore throats,
  • For improved blood-circulation
  • Clearing arteries of fatty deposits
  • Cholera
  • Anorexia
  • Liver infections

It is interesting to note that, later on King Henry VIII recommended it to treat the plague in the 16th century.

 

Modern Medicine’s Take on Ginger

Modern medicine has proven ginger root to posses many healthy benefits. Research has found that it stimulates the heart and settles “queasy” stomachs and is frequently prescribed for morning sickness and to improve digestion.   Its healing benefits are ascribed to active compounds in the rhizomes called gingerols and shogoals. These compounds react on stomach muscles and also help lower blood cholesterol.

 

These compounds also have cancer deterrent qualities and are known to minimize the risk of thrombosis. Another western use for ginger root is found in treating allergies as it provides an excellent, healthy alternative to using anti-histamines. Its “warming” qualities also go much further than simply negating the chilly grips of colds and influenza, as it is also used as a natural anti-depressant.

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