By now, the health benefits of exercise have been fairly well established in the scientific literature. In fact, there’s very little controversy or debate regarding the general value of physical activity on everything from cardiovascular to mental health. Even so, research into the therapeutic effects of exercise is ongoing and continues to reveal intriguing, new applications. One of the more exciting findings of late is the role which aerobic exercise plays in the promotion of liver health.
Tags: Inflammation, Liver, Milk Thistle
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Exercise | 2 Comments
A few weeks ago, I was listening to Dr. Wayne Dyer’s popular podcast on Hayhouse Radio. For the most part, Dr. Dyer’s programs feature content relating to psychological and spiritual matters. However, from time to time, he shares insights into his personal health care journey. On this particular occasion he revealed that he was enthusiastic about a time honored, natural therapy which supposedly cleanses and detoxifies the liver – coffee enemas. This is by no means a new concept in the field of holistic healing. That said, it has remained quite popular throughout the past several decades much to the scorn of the conventional medical establishment.
Tags: Cancer, Coffee, Liver
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Food and Drink | 2 Comments
Several weeks ago I was in the midst of one of the most stressful periods in my life. My wife and I were preparing for two moves (ours and my mother-in-law’s), while renovating an old townhouse that we all moved into together. Lots of changes, financial concerns and long days with a seemingly never-ending string of problems that needed solutions. In addition to the obvious stress of the circumstances, there were also many environmental insults (infuriated neighbors, earsplitting construction noise, endless dust, dirt, fumes, etc.). And, as a result, my diet wasn’t as “clean” as it normally is. A little more wine, some foods containing gluten and, generally speaking, a higher carbohydrate count were some of the highlights or lowlights of this recent period. Consequently, I began to notice an “angry” rash on my neck. It was inflamed, itchy, red and began to spread to my arms, chest and face. The severity of the rash worsened by the day. The next several weeks were downright miserable.
Tags: Eczema, Skin Care, Tea Tree Oil
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Mental Health | 7 Comments
Thought Field Therapy (TFT) is an inexpensive and rapid treatment used to address psychological challenges such as anxiety, phobias and post traumatic stress. The practice of TFT involves tapping oneself with your fingers, on select acupuncture points, while recalling traumatic experiences. According to TFT proponents, doing so releases negative emotions or perturbations in the bioenergic or thought field, thereby decreasing or resolving psychological symptoms.
Tags: Anxiety, Phobia, PTSD
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Mental Health | 3 Comments
In recent years, a short term diet known as The Daniel Fast has made several appearances in the medical literature. Currently, there are best selling books, courses and even retreats that assist religious and non-religious dieters in following the tenants of this Biblically-inspired program. The duration of the diet, as commonly practiced and studied, is slightly shorter (21 days) than other forms of religiously-based dietary restriction such as Ramadan fasting (28 to 30 days). Thus far, the results reported in various scientific journals have been relatively encouraging. However, there appears to be at least one caveat that has not yet been successfully resolved. The Daniel Fast lowers HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
Tags: Fasting, Krill Oil, Vegetarian
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Nutrition | No Comments;
One of the veteran products available at many health food stores is barley leaf juice powder. As its name implies, this is a dehydrated extract taken from young barley grass or “leaves”. Think of it as a close relative of wheat grass, an even more popular “super food”. Typically, barley leaf supplements are sold in a pale green, powdered from that boast names such as “Green Magma” or “Just Barley”. The labels of these products imply numerous health benefits, including detoxifying effects, immune system enhancement and increased energy. And, since these products have been around for decades and have amassed a large following of admirers, you might assume that there’s plenty of research to back them up. Surprisingly, this is not the case.
Tags: Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Vitamin K
Posted in Detoxification, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements | 2 Comments
Nothing says ‘summer’ quite like lounging around the pool in a swimsuit and flip flops. But, if you’re one of the millions of people with toenail fungus, wearing sandals may be something you dread. Fungal infections of the toenail (onychomycosis) affect an estimated 6 to 8% of the adult population. And, although they rarely present a serious health risk, it’s still an unsightly reminder that an infection has taken hold. Worse still, conventional treatments for this largely cosmetic condition often carry the risk of serious side effects including liver damage. Thankfully, both allopathic and alternative healers have some non-pharamacological options worth considering.
Tags: Grapefruit, Propolis, Tea Tree Oil
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, General Health | No Comments;
Throughout history, adolescents and adults with acne and oily skin have utilized clay masks as a means of improving appearance. This technique may not be technologically advanced, but you’ll still find it featured in the most cutting-edge skin care lines and offered at clinics and spas in the ritziest neighborhoods. Still, historical practices and modern popularity don’t always guarantee a strong rationale for using a given therapy. Fortunately, in recent years, scientists have begun to examine whether therapeutic clay truly deserves a place in 21st century dermatology.
Tags: Acne, Circulation, Skin Care
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Women's Health | 6 Comments
It’s frothy. It’s green. It’s a type of tea, but decidedly different looking and tasting than most brews. It’s matcha! Whether you’ve tried it or not, you’ve probably seen matcha-based drinks being sold in coffee shops and health food stores from Los Angeles to Tokyo. The claim is that matcha is essentially an elevated form of green tea. But, is this assertion backed up by anything more than historical accounts and slick advertisements?
Tags: Flu, Green Tea, Insomnia
Posted in Detoxification, Diabetes, Food and Drink | 4 Comments
Increased risk of birth defects, cancer and cardiovascular disease are not typically associated with the consumption of “wholesome” foods such as fruit juice and rice. After all, these menu options are 100% natural and frequently recommended as part of a healthy, low fat meal plan for adults and children alike. However, even if you set aside the high glycemic (ie blood sugar elevating) nature of these foods, you should still consider the possibility that they may be contaminated with the heavy metal arsenic.
Tags: Cancer, Heart Health, Juice, Rice
Posted in Detoxification, Food and Drink, Women's Health | 5 Comments
Wheatgrass juice (Triticum aestivum) is one of the more popular “super greens” included in dietary supplements and offered in juice and smoothie bars throughout the world. What’s more, if you browse the Internet you’ll find countless sites dedicated to extolling the virtues of daily wheatgrass therapy. But, anecdotal testimonials and brisk sales aren’t exactly a solid basis for making an informed decision about any given food or supplement. Fortunately, there is also a growing body of scientific research that can assist anyone interested in seriously evaluating wheatgrass.
Tags: Anemia, Cancer, Iron
Posted in Detoxification, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements | No Comments;
Back in the 1980′s, my childhood home came equipped with a sauna in the master bedroom. At the time, my parents didn’t consider sauna bathing to be a particularly healthful practice. In their minds, it was more of an elective activity from which some people derived pleasure and/or relaxation. As such, the wood lined sauna in our home was used exclusively as a make shift storage unit. However, over the past few decades a great deal of scientific research has been conducted on the health effects and risks associated with carefully controlled sauna exposure. A specific form, known as Waon Therapy, has recently been the subject of a considerable amount of positive attention.
Tags: Circulation, Sauna, Waon Therapy
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, Heart Health | 7 Comments
There’s a fine line between being informed about the dangers in the environment and being paranoid about every move you make. An imbalance in this perspective could lead one not to exercise because there’s pollution in the air, avoid fruits and vegetables because they contain pesticide residues and even to become a recluse for fear of germs spread through casual contact with other human beings. Clearly, a balance needs to be struck. Read more »
Tags: Antioxidants, BPA, Phytoestrogens
Posted in Children's Health, Detoxification, Women's Health | 4 Comments
No matter where in the world you’re reading this, you’re almost certainly aware of the crisis that’s unfolding in Japan. Among other things, the tragic events of this past week have drawn much attention to two otherwise obscure substances that are used to protect against radioactive fall out. Potassium iodide is the better known of the two. Prussian blue isn’t making much news yet, but that may change as the level of concern about radiation exposure continues to spread.
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Tags: Iodine, Radiation, Thyroid
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Detoxification, General Health | 9 Comments
The way you perceive things can dramatically influence the results you find. I think many people accept this concept as true to some extent. But how many of us actually keep this philosophy in mind when applying it in practical terms? For example – when psychiatrists throughout the world prescribe a medication for ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) or clinical depression, most patients are inclined to believe that it will relieve their symptoms. However, would the same mindset hold true if a physician “prescribed” eating more fish or supplementing with fish oil for the same conditions? Setting aside the relative efficacy of the respective treatments, it’s important to understand that the way you think about any given therapy is likely to affect the outcome – for better or for worse.
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Tags: ADHD, Depression, Fish, Fish Oil
Posted in Children's Health, Detoxification, Mental Health | 3 Comments
Sometimes the best way to draw attention to a specific issue is to simply lay out the stark facts and figures. It is estimated that nearly 50,000 people will die in 2009 from colorectal cancer in the United States alone. If you look at the combined incidence of colorectal cancer in both men and women, it is the second leading cause of cancer related mortality. In the US, that means that over 106,000 people will be diagnosed with colon cancer and about 41,000 will learn that they have rectal cancer. What’s more, governmental statistics estimate that the lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is about 1 in 19 or 5.3%. These numbers may seem shocking because these forms of cancer simply do not receive as much attention as breast or prostate cancer for instance. But the news about colorectal cancer isn’t all negative. According to the US Centers for Disease Control, the “death rate” from colorectal cancer is on the decline, perhaps due to better screening and removal of pre-cancerous colon polyps. But, as always, I believe the most promising avenue in the field of cancer research involves the safe and judicious use of “preventive medicine”.
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Tags: Antioxidants, Apples, Cancer
Posted in Detoxification, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 4 Comments