Blog posts of '2019' 'August'

by Mark K. Kaylor

When I started out in this industry 40 years ago, everyone wanted Ginseng. Today, it has largely been forgotten. As a result of the latest, hottest health craze, we often sacrifice traditional remedies that have been used for centuries.

There is an ever-growing body of research supporting and exploring Ginseng’s healing potential. At last glance, there were over 8,000 scientific citations for Ginseng on PubMed. While most of us focus on Ginseng’s use for energy, its gifts go much further. There are recent papers on Ginseng for its use as an adjunct in cancer therapy, dementia, aging, male reproductive health, depression, blood sugar control, cardiovascular health and much more. Looking back at the nature of this research and the leading health issues we are confronted with today, it would make more sense for Ginseng to be even more highly utilized than it was in the “good ol’ days.”

The Dynamic Duo

Two of the most powerful tonics supporting overall health, vitality and longevity are the mushrooms Cordyceps and Reishi. I refer to these two as a “duo” because they so perfectly compliment and support one another. Both Cordyceps and Reishi were considered “superior” remedies in traditional medicine. These mushrooms have extensive research showing significant immune function support; but it doesn’t stop there.

Like Ginseng, Cordyceps is most widely used for energy and endurance. It helps energize the body on all levels, from your cellular engines called mitochondria, to improving and strengthening lung, kidney, adrenal and heart function. Cordyceps is about the five “R’s”: recovery, rebuild, restore, revitalize and rejuvenate. Cordyceps can add life to our years and, hopefully, years to our life.

The second half of this dynamic duo is Reishi, a tonic for the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, adrenals and central nervous system. Its researched actions for the cardiovascular system alone make this mushroom remedy stand out. Reishi demonstrated benefits for blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides, coronary blood flow, oxygen uptake and inhibition of platelet aggregation. Traditionally valued as a “Shen” tonic, it makes it a wonderful remedy to help us find balance amidst stress and anxiety. The one word that I feel best sums up Reishi’s gift is balance, and who couldn’t use a little bit more of that today?

Tried and True

Nature provides us with such a broad and diverse array of healing allies. There are so many more beyond the three mentioned that you might want to explore including a favorite of mine, Burdock, nature’s alterative (mistakenly called blood cleansers, alteratives help restore the body to normal function). So, next time you read about the latest, greatest herb or food, please keep in mind the abundance of traditional healing allies that have stood the test of time and are now backed by an expanding body of research.

Note: for super results make sure your mushroom products are properly extracted to enhance bioavailability, Cordyceps in hot water and Reishi in both hot water and alcohol.

[article reposted with permission from developinghealthyhabits.com]

by Michael Ozner, M.D., FACC, FAHA

With cardiovascular disease (CVD) the leading cause of death in both men and women in the United States, it’s important that everyone understand their risk factors for heart attack and stroke. One easy way to combat your risk is to increase consumption of omega-3s—fatty acids that have been shown to support a healthy heart throughout life.

Omega-3 refers to a family of fats that the body can’t produce on its own—they have to be consumed. Although there are plant sources of omega-3s (e.g. flaxseed, walnuts), the optimal source is fish, especially cold-water fish that are rich in omega-3s (e.g. salmon, tuna, sardines). People often don’t know the difference between omega-3s and fish oil, and doctors sometimes use the two terms interchangeably. Fish oil, or fish oil products, are simply supplements that contain omega-3 fatty acids. These fats—particularly the two named EPA and DHA—are important because our bodies need them for optimal health. Omega-3 supplements are used when people are unable to maintain normal omega-3 levels in their bodies despite, or in place of, fish consumption.

Research on omega-3s and heart health is extensive, and the majority of clinical trials have demonstrated an improvement in heart health with regular fish or fish oil consumption. The prestigious medical journal, The New England Journal of Medicine, had a review article in 2011 highlighting the importance of omega-3s for cardiovascular health. The mechanisms of action of omega-3 fats discussed in this article that can potentially improve cardiovascular heath include:

  • Lowering triglycerides
  • Addressing inflammation
  • Promoting healthy blood pressure
  • Supporting a healthy resting heart rate
  • Maintaining healthy insulin
  • Supporting normal endothelial function
  • Addressing atherosclerotic plaque

The American Heart Association recommendation for omega-3 intake is to eat (preferably oily omega-3 rich) fish at least twice a week for healthy individuals, if approved by their physician. For those with a history of coronary heart disease or elevated triglycerides, the intake of fish or fish oil supplements is greater, and should be considered in consultation with their physician.

The bottom line is: take your heart health seriously. Don’t wait until you’re in trouble to make necessary changes in diet, exercise, and stress reduction. Avoid cigarette smoking. See your personal treating physician to assess your heart disease risk factors and develop a prevention strategy to stay healthy. Regarding omega-3 fat, measure your omega-3 level at the time of your routine blood tests—if you are deficient in omega-3s, discuss corrective measures with your physician.

[article reposted with permission from developinghealthyhabits.com]