My Most Cherished Herbs

 

Herbs are used as fragrances, spices for food and for medical purposes. It is the latter that I’m concerning about in this article. I’ve read of the many benefits herbs can be on one’s health, especially if used properly in tea-form. I’ve also been using various herbs for years, and I will say that I’ve been truly amazed at some of the results. They do work, if you know which ones to take, for what reason to take them and what time to take them.
I have a list of about fifty herbs that have more than piqued my curiosity. But for the sake of sanity, time and practicality, I have narrowed my focus on nine special herbs, that have done and can do wholesale health benefits on one’s constitution. The nine herbs I will focus in this article are:

1. Guduchi
2. Kutki
3. Manjistha
4. Red root
5. Olive leaf extract
6. Amla
7. Ashwagandha
8. Turmeric
9. Eclipta Alba

Guduchi

Of all the herbs I love, guduchi often comes to mind first when I think of a healing herb. It is like a low-dose multivitamin, filled with important minerals like magnesium, calcium, copper and selenium. It is most famous for being a prized ayurvedic herb for liver function.

Guduchi a.k.a Tinospora cordifolia a.k.a Amrita is an immune system booster. It helps increase activity of macrophage cells. It enhances the efficiency of white blood cells. It alleviates allergic rhinitis a.k.a hay fever a.k.a seasonal allergies. These allergies that are often a sign of a compromised immune system are sensitive most famously to pollen in the air. Guduchi reduces nasal congestion, runny nose, itchy eyes, coughing and sneezing caused by these allergens.

I personally use guduchi as a liver and kidney detoxifier, and a blood cleanser. It truly tonifies the blood, moving toxins from the extremities and placing them in a position to be detoxified by the liver and out of the alimentary canal.

Guduchi has a heating effect on the internal organs, opening up pores for better nutrient absorption, oxygen absorption and better breathing. It works wonders for asthma and respiratory infections.

Guduchi is also anti-inflammatory, reducing uric acid build-up, thus also reducing ailments like rheumatoid arthritis and gout. Other herbs like ginger and (the fruit) amla increase the effectiveness of guduchi with these conditions. Guduchi and amla powder made into a paste may alleviate many skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis.

Guduchi may also have adaptogen-like properties, able to balance hormones and reduce stress.

Guduchi has been used in folklore as a cancer cell/tumor inhibitor, capable of repairing damaged DNA and preventing damages to our DNA.

For those with high blood sugar, guduchi may be a good option. It is known to slow the rate of digestion of carbohydrates/sugar, thus lessening the body’s need for excess insulin. Be cautious when taking diabetic medications with guduchi — blood sugar may become too low.

Guduchi is best taken as an infused herb, meaning, you boil water, then pour it with the herb powder, and consume it as a tea.

Kutki

When it comes to liver health and fixing liver diseases such as fatty liver, cirrhosis of the liver and hepatitis, I cannot think of anything stronger or better than kutki. Kutki is another bitter herb that is renowned in ayurveda for reversing liver damage. If you have gallstones and liver stones, if your liver is not producing enough bile, think kutki!

Kutki a.k.a picrorhiza kurroa is a difficult plant to grow. It is the root that is mostly used for medicinal purposes. It may take up to two years before harvesting. Beware of farmers looking for a shortcut.

Kutki protects against fatty liver of almost any cause. It’s ayurveda’s premier liver, gallbladder herb. If you are thinking about doing a liver flush, consider kutki first. It contains picroside I, picroside II and kutkin, which are compounds believed by science to be the sources of its healing power. Kutki is very effective at causing cholagogue — stimulation of bile flow from the liver into the intestines — for the digestion of fat, and the lubrication of the intestines. It may also reduce excess bilirubin and excess liver enzymes.

Kutki is both a bitter and pungent herb, which is unusual. Most herbs are either one or the other. The benefits of bitter is that it cools the body from excessive heat. The purpose of pungent is that, like hot and spicy herbs, it has a cleansing effect, without actually being hot and spicy, like hot pepper. These properties produces proper levels of stomach acid, spleen heat and detoxifies environmental toxins such as cadmium, and even food toxins in alcohol.

Secondary to helping heal the liver, kutki may reduce circulating triglycerides and oxidized LDL cholesterol — without affecting HDL levels.

Manjistha

Manjistha a.k.a Rubia cordifolia a.k.a Indian madder is another cherished ayurvedic herb. It specializes in reinvigorating and moving the alkaline fluid within our lymphatic system. The fluid in our lymphatic system moves in an upward direction, from our feet and legs, up toward our stomach area, where it is coiled and concentrated in a sac-like system known as the cisterna chyli. This is where lymph fluid often gets clogged. Here is where manjistha also works its magic, unwinding clogged pathways of this drainage system. Manjistha is also known for many other things consequently, being a blood purifier, and a skin rejuvenator.

Prime constituents in manjistha include purpurin, munjistin, xanthopurpurin and pseudopurpurin. Secondary metabolites include alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, and anthraquinones. A natural antioxidant, manjistha may enhance other antioxidant markers, such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione S. transferase (GST).

Manjistha is useful for treating calcium deficiency, relieves mentrual pain and menstrual hormonal imbalances. It is also said to destroy tumors, heal diabetic ulcers and remove gallstones.

Among the skin conditions that may see an improvement from manjistha include psoriasis, eczema, and acne. It overall may present you with a more healthy, glowing skin tone.

Manjistha seems to have an affinity for women’s health. Not only may it improve skin tone — providing a more youthful appearance — it, by removing excess heat from the body, also provides relief for liver and kidney function, and balancing hormones in the process. If you are suffering from amenorrhea, you may want to give manjistha a try. Being that it improves all moving liquid in the body — the blood, interstitial fluid, lymph, urine — no wonder how it may be good at improving our immune system and balancing hormones. It also may reverse edema.

Manjistha stem and especially root are what’s mostly used as the healing properties. Look for only organic and sustainably sourced manjistha. Manjistha root is red and has traditionally been used as a dye through various cultures — careful, as it may stain your teeth.

Red Root

Red Root a.k.a Ceanothus (americanus) a.k.a “Jersey tea” is a nitrogen fixing shrub. In that, it makes blood flow easier without thinning the blood. Therefore, avoid this herb if you are on blood thinners and coagulants. Red root is an immune system booster, capable of reducing mucus by stimulating the mucous membrane and by acting as an expectorant. It also may relieve sore throat, strep throat and the flu and cold viruses. It provides inflammation defense, microbial defense, respiratory support and lymphatic support.

Like manjistha, red root works on the lymphatic system, specifically the lymph nodes. We have over 500 lymph nodes throughout our lymphatic system. Red Root is effective against swollen, inflamed lymph nodes. It also supports and protects another important lymphatic organ: the spleen. A proper working spleen produces clean blood.

Red Root is for temporary use only. It may interfere with iron and other mineral absorption. As previously mentioned, it should not be taking with blood thinners and coagulants.

Olive leaf extract

Olive leaf extract is one of the safest herbs to consume on the regular basis. Prized since ancient Egypt, and perhaps before, olive leaf is indeed from the fruit tree we know so well that produces olives and olive oil. This herb is a natural antioxidant that truly boosts the immune system, helping to destroy viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. Both a preventative and curative herb, olive leaf extract contains a polyphenol called oleuropein (25 mg), which may manage some forms of hypertension (high blood pressure) if used regularly.  Then there are other antioxidant  metabolites produced, like hydroxytyrosol, only found in this herb.

As an antioxidant and immune system booster, olive leaf extract may inhibit the over-activation of mTOR (a cellular intermediate that helps build things like muscle and even carcinogenic agents), reduce DNA damage, increase the activity of the antioxidant glutathione peroxidase, and thus fight tumors and cells associated with cancer.

Olive leaf extract is also good for some skin conditions, especially shingles.

Olive leaf extract is NOT a full spectrum antibiotic. Don’t be disappointed if it doesn’t reduce candidiasis . Also do not take this herb with other antibiotics — they may cancel each other’s effectiveness out.

Amla

Amla a.k.a Emblica officinalis a.k.a Indian gooseberry is not an herb, but rather a fruit that grows on an herb tree of the same name. Amla is used for both preventative and therapeutic purposes. It contains a small amount of vitamin C. However this vitamin C is potent due to polyphenols which keeps it intact. Amla is an antioxidant which may lower inflammation, high blood pressure, high blood sugar and prevent LDL oxidation.

Amla may promote longevity through mechanisms not yet fully understood by science. What is known is that it contains tannoids which may reduce cataract and diabetic retinopathy, thus making amla somewhat neuroprotective.

In lab tests, amla decimates cancer cells, including lung cancer, breast cancer, cervical cancer, ovarian and colorectal cancer. This is partially due to the fact that it protects our DNA from heavy metal damage, and also raises intracellular levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD.)

Amla is good for moving the bowels and also the lymphatic system. If you are suffering from constipation or a sluggish bowel, consider amla as a preventative and therapeutic agent for this purpose. If your lymphatic system is stagnant, higher doses of amla will eventually get it moving. Alma is included in an ayurvedic blend of berries to alleviate constipation, known as triphala.

Being a source of natural,stable vitamin C, amla is many more times potent than ascorbic acid. Ascorbic acid is falsely claimed to be vitamin C, when really it is only the outer protective coating of true vitamin C. True vitamin C contains an enzymatic form of copper known as tyrosinase, which amla does have.

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha root is now known to be a very powerful adaptogen, meaning, it knows how to adapt the body’s stress response and homeostatic balance from external and internal influences. It reduces excess cortisol (excess cortisol may cause inflammation, raise insulin and deplete other important hormones like dopamine and testosterone.)

Ashwagandha increases progesterone levels in both men and women. Progesterone burns fat — so ashwagandha burns fat by increasing progesterone. Not only does it burn fat, it also increases muscle size (especially in the quadriceps), strength and endurance. It may reduce fat  deposits at the waistline.

Ashwagandha may improve every aspect of human sexuality, increasing sexual arousal, particularly in women, being women have more progesterone than men, and ideally leading to more good estrogen in women. It also lubricates the vagina, increases — to a noticeable extent — sperm quantity and motility. Orgasm between both sexes are enhanced with ashwagandha.

You may be tempted to use ashwagandha often for the reasons stated above — however, ashwagandha is for temporarily use only. An over-consumption of this herb can cause an overreaction of everything else. It may become irritating to the stomach’s mucosal layer, causing a form of gastritis.

Ashwagandha, additionally, is good for brain function, focus and memory. It has gaba-mimicking qualities, being anti-anxiety and depression reducing. This herb is currently being tested as a natural remedy for Alzheimer’s disease. Damaged neurons are being restored in lab tests when given this herb.

Be careful where and who you buy ashwagandha from. Not all ashwagandha are equal. Some brands may provide all the benefits listed, while others — not even one. There are compounds in ashwagandha that if not dosed properly, will not provide the claimed benefits. One of those compounds is known as withanolides. Being a skeptic myself, I personally do not believe this is the main ingredient that makes ashwagandha what it is. I believe there is much more to learn about this great herb.

Ashwagandha is also a great sleep aid. This may seem contradictory, being this herb is usually used in the morning to stimulate and get us through the day. However, taking ashwagandha 2 hours before bedtime will reveal its adaptogenic effect in helping you to sleep.

As noted earlier, ashwagandha is not for everyday use. It may increase autoimmune activity and make things worse. It may worsen thyroid disorders, increasing unwanted thyroid hormonal levels. It may irritate the gastrointestinal tract and give rise to ulcers. It may decrease blood pressure and make things worse if you are already on hypertension medication. It is advised to stop using ashwagandha two weeks before surgery, as it may exacerbate bleeding. For these reasons, I believe it is best to use ashwagandha as a decocted tea, meaning, you boil the herb parts or powder in water for a period of time, let the sediments settle for discarding, and drink the hot liquid portion.

Turmeric

A very popular spice in Indian cuisine, turmeric has made its way as an in-demand herb from ayurveda. From the same family as ginger, turmeric has anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties. Turmeric is being studied for its ability to destroy tumors and cancer cells.

Lab tests done have revealed turmeric is capable of fighting certain cancers, like prostate, colorectal and bladder cancer, arresting these cells, bursting them and causing apoptosis. Metastasis and tumor growth were reduced. The mechanism how this is done is not fully known.

Anti-inflammatory compounds in turmeric, interleukin-I and interleukin-II, control cytokines from wreaking havoc and more inflammation by lowering the body’s ability to send pain signals to the brain. This makes turmeric an ideal source for chronic pain relief, such as general arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia.

Turmeric may reduce your need for exogenous antioxidants by raising the body’s own antioxidant levels, superoxide dismutase, glutathione and catalase. This thus protects cells against DNA damage.

Turmeric may improve cognitive function — reducing anxiety and depression. It may improve memory and focus. It is actually currently being studied for its ability to reverse Alzheimer’s disease.

Turmeric when consumed is not evenly distributed throughout the body though.  It is not even absorbed easily by the body. Coconut oil or black pepper (piperine) must be added to increase turmeric’s absorption rate –and they do this quite well. Furthermore, foods containing quercetin inhibit turmeric’s absorption. And to make things even more complicated, black pepper is an allergen for many people.

Turmeric is not for daily consumption. There may be a reason why the body does not absorb turmeric well by itself. It is not one of those herbs you should take everyday. In fact, right now many people are abusing turmeric by taking too much of it. The thinking is if a little is good, a lot must be better. This is truly not the case. An over-consumption of turmeric in lab tests have resulted in increased mTOR and ACTUAL increased cancer cell formation, liver damage and decreased testosterone levels. As an herb high in oxalates, too much turmeric may chelate certain important minerals and vitamins out of the body, like copper and biotin. On a positive note though, tumeric also help chelate toxins and heavy metals out of the body, like mercury, lead and unbound iron.

1/4 teaspoon of turmeric three times per week may be the ideal, safe dosage of this herb.

Eclipta alba

Eclipta alba may never become a famous herb like the others. It is quite unique and different than any of the others listed. Also known as False Daisy, Eclipta prostrate, Bhringraj and Yerba de Tago, Eclipta alba is a species of the sunflower family and whose leaves are known as a liver tonic, a hair tonic and color rejuvenator and may even grow back hair on some people who have lost theirs. It is also an immunostimulant.

I personally have used this herb orally for many months in the hopes of obtaining my lost hair back. It did not work. I didn’t grow any extra hair, but I also didn’t loss more. To my understanding, for this herb to grow hair, it ought to be made into a paste and placed on the scalp area needed; and it should be used in conjunction with other herbs/supplements to obtain the desired effects. The petroleum ether extract of this herb has been used along with other herbs — Citrullus Colocynthis and  Cuscuta Relexa — in repeated studies to produce hair regrowth.

Eclipta Alba may benefit the liver — mainly consisting of coumestans i.e. wedelolactone polypeptides, and flavonoids. Coumestans are known to possess estrogenic activity. Wedelolactone possesses a wide range of biological activities and is used for the treatment of hepatitis and cirrhosis. Thus, Eclipta Alba may be both reparative and nourishing to a damaged liver.

This explains the other benefits associated with consuming Eclipta Alba: cooling the blood, healing eye problems, healing skin problems such as eczema and acne, antibacterial and anti-hemorrhagic. This herb is also noted to lessen anger in participants who use it. In Chinese medicine, anger is stored in the liver — if the liver is free and working properly, anger does not store, but is released.

As previously mentioned, this herb contains immunostimulatory properties. It may increase B-cell count, as well as macrophage activity. It may also even  inhibit cancer cell proliferation. Lab tests have revealed a reduction in hepatic, kidney and glioma cancer cells.

As with most herbs, there is often some compound that would prevent continuous usage. As previously mentioned, Eclipta Alba contains estrogenic compounds. This will be compromising to men whose hormonal balance is already compromised with too much exogenous estrogen. Man boobs may appear, hair loss and enlarged prostate may manifest. Also, for women, a hormonal imbalance may occur between estrogen and progesterone levels, with too much exogenous estrogen, leading to painful periods, or even amenorrhea. So for these reasons, Eclipta Alba should be used with caution and at the right time and amount.

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You may have noticed most of these herbs share common denominators: they are immune system boosters, cancer fighters and liver rejuvenators! It is best to consume them either decocted or infused in tea form, and separating the tea from the residual sediments. Herbs should also be consumed ideally 3 times per week and generally no more. They also should be rotated so that our cells do not become overly adapted to them.

Some of these herbs can be purchased at the link below:

Banyan Botanicals

 

 

Supplementing Vitamin B12

I am not sure if vitamin B12 should be considered a vitamin. After-all, its other name is cobalamin, which is a mineral, cobalt, attached to amine (amine being a derivative of ammonia.)

Vitamin B12 is needed by every cell in the human body. A depletion of it causes high homocysteine, impaired cellular division, symptoms of anemia, cardiovascular disease, brain damage, nerve damage, and even cancer. A dead giveaway that you may have a vitamin B12 deficiency is problems with the tongue: over-sized, not healing quickly when bruised, causing difficulty in speech.

Many people are low on vitamin B12 because their chronic low stomach acid had inhibited the release of a protein produced in the stomach wall known as the intrinsic factor. This protein helps protect the vitamin from stomach acid and leads it to the terminal ileum of the small intestine, where it is picked up by another protein called transcobalamin II. From there it is transported to the blood and surrounding tissue as needed, while excess is stored in the liver for recycling.

Vitamin B12 supplements help bypass the intrinsic factor, and are currently available in many forms — methylcobalamin, adenosylcobalamin, hydroxocobalamin and cyanocobalamin — cyanocobalamin being the cheapest and most unnatural, ineffective and dangerous form. This synthetic version contains small amounts of cyanide, a dead giveaway of its foreign assimilation to the body.
Methylcobalamin also is not for everyone. Don’t be surprised if you experience strange symptoms ingesting 1000 or 2000 mcg of methylcobalamin. If you have a methylation defect, it won’t be absorbed properly, if at all.

And why so much — why thousands of mcg? The amount of vitamin B12 that your body will utilize throughout your entire life amounts to the size of ONE grain of rice! The RDA/RDI/DV only recommends about 2.4 mcg of B12. They did this for a reason. The RDA/RDI is more brilliant than we think. We in the holistic world tend to give them very little credit. B12 is the largest of B vitamins — when you consume 1000 mcg of say methylcobalamin, only 1 to 2% of it is actually absorbed. The other 98 to 99% is excreted and worse, stored in the fat cells or other tissue cells, becoming toxins. Toxins can lead to cancer. Contrary to popular belief, water-soluble vitamin does not mean all of it will be excreted from the body. Some of it will be stored just like fat soluble vitamins — in all the wrong places!

If you are taking supplemental B12, such as methylcobalamin, you must also take folate and vitamin B6 in the form of P5P. Methylcobalamin utilizes and depletes said vitamins. For this reason, it may be wise to assume that if you have a vitamin B12 deficiency, you have a deficiency of many other vitamins and minerals as well. Thus a natural multivitamin may be a wise choice to consider.

If you are having trouble absorbing methylcobalamin, the other forms such as hydroxocobalamin and adenosylcobalamin may be a consideration. Adenosylcobalamin is the form that is stored in the mitochondria and is used to fuel the cell. Hydroxocobalamin (produced by bacteria and their activities) is found naturally in food and reduces excess nitric oxide in the body. Hydroxocobalamin also converts into adenosylcobalamin and methylcobalamin.
It would be a good idea to find a supplement that contains all three forms: hydroxocobalamin, adenosylcobalamin and methylcobalamin in low dosage, for temporary use. Vitamin B12 in stored and recycled by the liver for up to five to seven years — there is no need for continual supplementation.

Natural forms of vitamin B12 include grass-fed butter, grass-fed liver and oysters.

Vitamin D Toxicity

 

You will not overdose on vitamin D from the sun — it just will not happen. The sun regulates not only the cholecalciferol (vitamin D) formed from cholesterol in your skin; but it also regulates everything else: your vitamin A, B, C, E, K, Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium and other minerals and trace minerals. The sun is not just doing one thing — it’s doing and providing many things.

It is dangerous to be taking high doses of vitamin D3 supplements isolated without a complete supplement profile. Even taking  D3/K2 -mk7 is still not good enough. Too much vitamin D3 will automatically lower your vitamin A level. Look up symptoms for a vitamin A deficiency. Furthermore, when vitamin A becomes deficient because of the over-using of vitamin D3, then the stored mineral copper becomes depleted/dysregulated in the liver. Copper is the spark plug of the body. Even some auto-engine spark plugs are made with copper. Even vitamin C is made up partially with an enzymatic copper-carrier, called tyrosinase. Vitamin C, which is most abundant in the adrenal glands, will not work without copper. Thus you have thyroid and hormonal dysfunctionality thinking that it’s an iodine deficiency, when really it’s a copper deficiency, traced back to taking too much supplementation D3. Many women are taking HRT or bio-identical hormones, when all they really need is 2 mg of copper daily.

Taking cod liver oil will prevent this cascade somewhat because of the retinol (vitamin A) content of cod-liver oil. However, cod liver oil has its own problems, and retinol in supplement form is a poison toxin, that should only be taken for a short period of time, if at all.

I personally supplement with lichens or mushrooms to achieve a healthy vitamin D status. And of course, I try to get as much sunlight as possible and as needed.

Some health professionals are saying that the only toxic effect of too much supplement vitamin D is raising calcium levels in the blood! No! But there are other issues. As previously mentioned, too much vitamin D supplementing reduces retinol (vitamin A) in the liver. Retinol is needed to activate ceruloplasmin — the protein that transports bio-available copper.

If retinol is reduced, then bio-available copper is reduced. If copper is reduced, then unbound iron builds up in the blood, since copper controls/regulates iron. If unbound iron builds up, then there is inflammation and rusting of the organs, especially the liver, spleen, stomach, heart and even brain.
Don’t believe me? I ask that anyone who has been taking high doses of vitamin D3 10,000 IU (even with K2-mk7) or more, get a ferritin test. If the test shows over 100, you have a problem. If it shows over 300, you have a serious problem: way too much unbound iron wreaking havoc and causing inflammation, and even autoimmune diseases: the birth of autoimmune diseases!

Colostrum’s Health Benefits: The Myth of the Century

 

Colostrum: the pre-milk fluid produced in the mammary glands of mammals — specifically here, bovines — just before and immediately following giving birth. A new fad has emerged among adult humans consuming bovine colostrum. But is colostrum for regular human adult use — is that a good thing?

I took colostrum for six weeks, then suddenly, I stopped! Something sinister was going on in the works.
I talked about human DNA methylation — a process which scientists estimate happens either more than one (1) billion times or more than ten (10) billion times each second within our cells. Human growth hormones carry different codes that differ from cows. (The nutritional requirements for even an infant child is different from that of an adult.) These codes translate into epigenetic and (then maybe) genetic changes within our cells. It is unpredictable if, when, how much, how soon and even how human DNA will be affected, and if so, how permanent these changes may affect our health in the future.

There is indeed short-term gain from taking colostrum — but at the risk of long-term damage. A product that boosts or activates the immune system does not mean that product is a good thing. The immune system activates suddenly when it perceives a foreign threat. From this activation, other benefits may happen, but it is often not permanent, and may make a bad situation worse. What may seem as a boost of energy or a relief of IBS may be the slow workings leading to cancer or a heart attack!

It seems to me that continuous use of colostrum may increase mTOR activity, causing a type of growth factor to accelerate in the body. For example, a 60 to 80 pound calf will grow multiple times its weight by the end of weaning off of its mother’s milk. When an adult human male consume bovine colostrum, unwanted growth may accelerate in all the wrong places — like the prostate. Even consuming human mother’s milk will make a human adult person sick. The truth is, the nutritional requirements for babies and adults are different. A human infant ideally have 10 times more copper ratio in its liver to an adult, forming the missing core of its undeveloped immune system. Bovine colostrum may contain a mineral ratio balance that is incompatible for an adult human.

I must therefore conclude that bovine colostrum is for the development of newborn calves, and may be constructive only for that purpose. Continuous consumption of this genetic sensitive product may indeed not be suitable for or compatible with human DNA.

The Truth about Fish Oil and Cod Liver Oil

 

Fish oil, like the name implies, is oil extracted from the tissues of  (oily) fish, namely among mackerel, herring and tuna. Cod liver oil, as the name also implies, is oil extracted from the liver of the cod fish. There is a similarity between fish oil and cod liver oil: they are both terrible for human consumption.

Even if one is cold-pressed, and the other is cold-pressed, extra virgin, they both quickly oxidize even in your stomach, generating destructive free radicals.
Omega 3 fatty acids being essential is a myth. The human body and brain does not need DHA or EPA from fish oil or cod liver oil. That too is a myth, and a dangerous one at that!

There are some parts of the human digestive system -specifically within the duodenum – that if you could touch it, it would burn you like fire. Ayurveda calls it “AGNI.” Fish oil comes from cold water creatures for the most part. Fish oil is too unstable for the AGNI process.

If you think you are getting a balanced source of vitamin A and vitamin D3 from cod liver oil, you are sadly mistaken. The cod liver oil of today is not the same cod liver oil your great grand-mother insisted upon. There are two main forms of vitamin A, retinol and beta carotene. The beta carotene is a pre-form which the liver has the control to convert into the necessary levels of vitamin A the body needs. Retinol is pure vitamin A without restrictions — your body can overdose on it. Our liver is designed to make retinol from carotenoids, found in beta carotene from food, and not absorb it purely from synthetic (or extracted oil) sources.  Furthermore, retinol in cod liver oil competes with vitamin D3, reducing vitamin D3 effectiveness.

And furthermore, both fish oil and cod liver oil are capable of producing a disease that is rarely, if ever, talked about in the medical community: yellow fat disease (or pansteatitis.) This disease not only affects animals, such as felines, but also affects the liver of the human body. The liver of any animal, including cod fish liver is always a toxic, poisonous organ, and should be used sparingly.

I love fish, when they are alive. The unnecessary mass destruction of the marine ecosystem is now having a powerful effect on our climate. Some tsunami and earthquakes may be at the hands of human meddling!

Should We Be Taking Zinc Supplements?

•••

Zinc is an important trace mineral that serves both  as an antioxidant and an oxidant. It is also an essential mineral in which you can easily overdose on. If your body is having difficulty absorbing it, then it is no longer a trace mineral, but an irritant poison. Zinc is not one of those trace minerals that does wonders on its own. It serves as a structural support alongside other minerals. It is needed to help boost testosterone, sex drive, brain function and immune system boosting. It is a helper and needs help helping.

Alas! If you have a zinc deficiency you have a mineral deficiency of every mineral in your body. Interestingly, too much zinc also depletes all minerals in your body. Zinc’s role is also a stealer of other minerals.
If you are planning on taking zinc as a supplement, beware. Those sexually active men need zinc; the standard American diet depletes zinc — but too much isolated zinc can in men cause prostate cancer. If you are taking 25 mg to 50 mg of zinc per day, beware. Copper is needed to regulate zinc and too much zinc depletes copper in the liver. This copper loss can lead to liver damage. If you have a zinc deficiency, then you have a zinc deficiency not because you need more zinc but because you need more of every single mineral that the human body requires.

I personally only eat 3 to 5 cups of vegetables per day, so I supplement. The best multivitamin I’ve seen on the market is Naturelo Whole Food multivitamin. It contains natural everything! Another supplement I occasionally take to ensure zinc sufficiency is Oysterzinc, made from real oysters obtained in the Atlantic waters on along Ireland’s coastline. We really do not need more than 10 mg of zinc per day.

So do we need to supplement on zinc? The answer is: No! This reality took months for me to personally accept. We should not be taking zinc supplements [avoid zinc oxide and picolinate especially] unless it is derived from food or whole-food supplements. It is one of those trace minerals that needs to form in the body naturally than be taken supplementally. Taking high doses of isolated zinc can wreak havoc on our body’s metabolic state and deteriorate our body’s general homeostasis. Zinc is a helper trace mineral, that needs help helping!

Magnesium: The King Of Minerals

 

As we age, unbound, free iron increases in our body while magnesium decreases. For healthy living, it should be the other way around. Increased magnesium automatically keeps potassium from depleting. There lies the heart connection. Magnesium is not involved in over 300 enzymatic processes — it’s more like over 3000! If you know about methylation, you will know the power of magnesium, and P5P, and copper, and zinc, and manganese, and molybdenum! The number one thing that is depleting magnesium in health conscious people today is taking too much Vitamin D3. If you are taking D3/K2-MK7 without adding magnesium, it would be better had you not taken the former(s). Vitamin D3 depletes retinol (vitamin A), which then depletes ceruloplasmin (a protein needed to transport copper), which then depletes bioavailable copper, which then causes unbound iron buildup and rusting of the blood and organs — because copper regulates iron. Which then causes a great depletion of magnesium!

I’ve seen statistics estimating that 60 percent of the population is deficient in magnesium; and I’ve seen others raising it to 85 percent. In reality though, I believe the entire human race is deficient in magnesium! Yes, even 100 percent of all people are deficient in this important mineral. Even those eating the healthiest foods in the world are deficient. Even those supplementing in high doses are deficient. Magnesium is very easy to lose, like water vapor is very easy to dissipate. Even stress depletes magnesium. Even thinking too hard depletes magnesium. Heat depletes magnesium in our body. Cold depletes magnesium. Exercise depletes magnesium. A sedentary lifestyle depletes magnesium. Consuming the wrong type of magnesium depletes magnesium. Too much or too little of any other mineral or vitamin depletes magnesium. Inflammation anywhere in the body uses magnesium like gasoline, depleting it. Just being alive depletes magnesium.

Magnesium is so important for so many things and is needed in so many things. Our cell’s mitochondria needs magnesium to work at all . The enzymes used to create energy during ATP, from cellular respiration, need magnesium. Potassium and sodium depend on magnesium. Progesterone and all other hormones need magnesium as a co-factor. If you have low progesterone, you have low magnesium. To even sleep properly, you need magnesium. Serotonin, dopamine and melatonin depend on magnesium.

Supplementing magnesium via vegetables is surprisingly not easy. Supplementing it with chlorophyll is also impractical. What is chlorophyll — what does it look like? If you think it’s that green liquid thing you see in bottles, you are sadly mistaken. Chlorophyll does not come in liquid form! Currently, I am taking magnesium glycinate/malate combination, about 500 mg, per day — because they are among the most absorbable forms of magnesium. If you think something like magnesium oxide is absorbable, you are sadly mistaken. You would be lucky to receive even a rate of 4% absorption.

There are other absorbable forms of magnesium besides glycinate and malate, that can be taken — such as magnesium citrate, found in Natural Calm Canada. I personally would rotate between the different forms of absorbable magnesium rather than stick to just one brand. And there is mineral water. Spring water has an affinity to magnesium— it loves this mineral. Decocting or infusing herbs in hot water extracts the magnesium into the water.

You could get magnesium from such herbs as turmeric, guduchi, fenugreek, eclipta alba, saffron, olive leaf extract and many more. However, herbs are designed to be used sparingly— typically 1/4 teaspoon per day, or less.

People’s bodies are not aged by time, but by a depleting of magnesium (and others), an increase in unbound iron; and the build-up of toxins and heavy metals in our cells and tissues, and even by the oxidation of fatty acids.

Where you could find magnesium, listed below:

Coming Soon…

The Mystical, Wild Chaga Mushroom

 

I have been drinking wild chaga tea for the last two years. I credit this as one of the best decisions of my life. Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is a sterile, black conk mushroom. It is considered a fungus and parasite — for one, it thrives on the barks of birch trees. Its appearance is that of burnt charcoal because of its high melanin content. On the inside, it is bronze in color. This mushroom can be found naturally in the wild, mainly in Canada and Russia, with Siberia possessing exceptional quality chaga. So if you want the real, unadulterated thing, these are the places to look for as the source of origin.

Wild chaga is like a multivitamin, immune system strengthener and possible cancer/tumor fighter all wrapped into one supplement. It contains over 215 phytonutrients which alkalizes an over acidic body. It contains, among other things:

1. B vitamins, especially  riboflavin (B2) and niacin (B3.) It also contains pantothenic acid (B5), which is very good for the adrenal glands. Since the adrenal glands regulate the immune system, that system will also greatly benefit.

2. Vitamin D, which is actually a steroid hormone which helps boost and regulate the immune system, increasing your ability to fight colds and the flu.

3. Phenols/phenolic compounds, known for their protective effect on DNA and against oxidation. Chaga contains pigment-like phenols known as the chromogenic complex. This chromogenic complex is abundant and only known to exist in the chaga mushroom. Siberian chaga is particularly loaded with this.

Chaga also contains flavonoids, which are poly-phenolic compounds.

4. Enzymes, such as Superoxide Dismutase (SOD). Chaga is exceedingly high in SOD when compared to other nutritional supplements. SOD is an antioxidant enzyme which halts iron oxidation, especially from a free radical known as singlet oxygen. Superoxide dismutase turns the superoxide (free radicals) back into oxygen and water. Bottom line: SOD protects your cells’ mitochondria and DNA from damage.

5. Essential minerals, such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium.

6. Ionized trace minerals, such as copper, zinc, manganese and iron.

(Some health conscious people may be worried about the calcium and iron in chaga, which in synthetic form should always be avoided; but the calcium and iron in wild chaga is quite absorbable and healthy.)

7.  Various other nutrients, such as:

a) Betulin: Betulinic acid/lupeol. Betulin provides metabolite compounds (Betulinic acid/lupeol) which are antimutagenic, highly antiviral and anti-tumor. It has been used to shrink some types of cancerous tumors.

b)  Polysaccharides. These compounds  have the ability to stimulate the immune system. They also pinpoint and serve as a carrier of nutrients to the tissue regions of the body most needed.

c)  Beta glucans. This also strengthens the immune system.

d)  Saponins. Contains both anti-allergenic and anti cancer properties.

e)  Phyto-sterols. Sometimes, the appearance of sterol in a product may be a good or bad thing. It’s unclear the benefits of sterols in chaga, but it may include improving one’s cholesterol efficiency and providing antiviral properties.

Chaga is also good for people with stomach issues. Inflammatory Bowel Disease such as Crohn’s and Ulcerative colitis may see improvement. So would those with stomach ulcers and diseases of the duodenum, liver and spleen.

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Word of caution:

Chaga is safest used in tea form. It has the ability to lower platelets, thus thinning the blood. So people on blood thinners should be aware.

It has the ability to accumulate oxalates, and thus kidney stones. So those with kidney issues should be aware.

It lowers blood glucose. So those on blood sugar medication should be aware.

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The chaga conk is very unique and versatile in many ways, being anti-cancer, anti-tumor, anti -inflammatory, anti-aging, anti-diabetic, anti-viral, anti- bacterial, anti-fungal and even brain protecting. It is said to even contain a DNA structure that is 30 percent more human than plant. There is much more to learn and discover about this fascinating  specimen of nature.

Where you will find the unadulterated, wild chaga, listed below:

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