Regular Coffee Drinkers Have Cleaner Arteries

coffeeStory at-a-glance −

People who drank three to five cups of coffee daily were less likely to have calcium deposits in their coronary arteries

Moderate coffee consumption may lower your risk of clogged arteries, heart attacks, dementia, Parkinson’s, Continue reading

Zecuity or Alternative Remedy?

Believe me when I tell you that Big Pharma wants to make it as easy as possible for you to consume their dangerous and costly medications. Don’t like injections? Try a pill. Pills not your thing? Try some cherry-flavored syrup instead.

The folks at the drug companies would deliver Continue reading

Diet’s Role in Lowering Risk of Repeat Heart Attacks

Patients with heart disease frequently assume that medication is enough to forestall a repeat heart attack or stroke, but a large new study shows the preventive power of a healthy diet. Continue reading

Study Shows This Could Be the Real Cause of Some Heart Attacks

One of the risk factors for the heart arrives through the eardrums. Studies have suggested that people who work or live in constantly loud environments may have weakened hearts. More to the point, long-term exposure to blaring noises is believed now to be triggering fatal heart disease.

Noise pollution is well-known, Continue reading

Breast Cancer and Heart Attacks: A Deadly Side Effect of Calcium Supplements?

Calcium is one of the most popular dietary supplements on the market, largely because of the widely circulated mantra that mega-doses of this mineral are essential for building and maintaining healthy bones.

As a result, many people believe that taking a calcium supplement is a simple way to prevent bone fractures associated with osteoporosis.

What they have not been told is that while you can force increased bone mineral density with calcium supplements, you cannot be sure that this will result in greater bone strength.

Be Careful In Interpreting Bone Tests Results

Bone density, Continue reading

BPA May Cause Arrhythmia, Heart Attacks in Women

Bisphenol A overrides the natural heartbeat signal causing female heart cells to misfire, according to a recent study. Given how pervasive BPA is these days, this could mean heart problems, possibly even fatal ones, for millions of women.

BPA is everywhere

BPA is ubiquitous in the industrial world: in clear plastic containers, in the epoxy lining of canned foods, in dental sealants, and even coating many store receipts. Studies in the past five years have shown that nearly everyone living in the industrial world encounters at least trace amounts of this compound.

Yet industries using plastics for packaging, as well as some mainstream medical experts, have long assured the public that small concentrations of BPA do not pose a serious health hazard. FDA efforts Continue reading

Trading Low Cholesterol for Diabetes?

According to NHS statistics, it won’t be long before one in four adults over the age of 40, in the UK, is taking a statin drug… There’s a similar statin drive currently taking place in the US. The US government’s National Cholesterol Education Program panel advised those at risk for heart disease to attempt to reduce their LDL ‘bad’ cholesterol to specific, very low levels by taking statins.

Frankly, the statins-craze is downright ridiculous and the fact that these drugs are dominating the market is a clear indication of the power of Big Pharma’s marketing machine… the odds are almost 100 to 1, that if you’re taking a statin drug you don’t need it!

Worse still, statin drugs have severe side effects… this is a well-established fact  Continue reading

Scientists Develop New Blood Test to Detect Heart Attacks

A new blood test that detects heart attacks that would otherwise have gone undiagnosed was developed by scientists in Scotland.

Researchers at Edinburgh University said Wednesday that the test — which identifies heart-muscle damage — is more sensitive than the methods currently used and is capable of identifying a third more heart attacks.

“Adopting a more sensitive test and lowering the threshold for detection of heart-muscle damage is appropriate and will substantially improve the outcome of patients with chest pain and suspected heart attack,” said researcher  Continue reading

Using Herbs To Detoxify Your Body

Herbs can help in the detoxification process by aiding the organs that help in natural detoxification. These include the liver, urinary system, digestive systems, skin and lungs. The herbs used in various detox treatments can be classified based on the organ they work upon. Herbal remedies can be prepared from these herbs based on specific individual conditions:

Laxatives and diuretics herbs
* Licorice root
* Psyllium seed
* Alfalfa
* Yucca root
* Violet leaf
* Guar gum
* Marshmallow root

Herbs that provide support to the liver
* Cascara sagrada bark
* Milk thistle seed
* Dandelion

Parasite expeller herbs
* Black walnut hull
* Pumpkin seed

Herbs that soothe irritated digestive and urinary tracts
* Irish Moss
* Passionflower leaf

Antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant herbs
* Witch hazel bark, twigs, and leaves
* Capsicum
* Gentian root
* Cranberry

Multipurpose herbs ( Demulcents, blood purifiers, energizers, laxatives and diuretics)
* Horsetail
* Slippery elm bark
* Mullein leaf
* Black cohosh
* Burdock root
* Echinacea
* Fennel seed
* Fenugreek
* Ginger root
* Papaya

There are many herbal detox products that are prepared using a combination of these herbs. These products are developed for various specific needs like balancing sugar levels, breaking down organic wastes in the body, calming tense nerves, neutralizing acidity and loosening hardened phlegm in the lungs.

Is Marijuana a Medicine?

Charlene DeGidio never smoked marijuana in the 1960s, or afterward. But a year ago, after medications failed to relieve the pain in her legs and feet, a doctor suggested that the Adna, Wash., retiree try the drug.

Ms. DeGidio, 69 years old, bought candy with marijuana mixed in. It worked in easing her neuropathic pain, for which doctors haven’t been able to pinpoint a cause, she says. Now, Ms. DeGidio, who had previously tried without success other drugs including Neurontin and lidocaine patches, nibbles marijuana-laced peppermint bars before sleep, and keeps a bag in her refrigerator that she’s warned her grandchildren to avoid.

“It’s not like you’re out smoking pot for enjoyment or to get high,” says the former social worker, who won’t take the drug during the day because she doesn’t want to feel disoriented. “It’s a medicine.”

For many patients like Ms. DeGidio, it’s getting easier to access marijuana for medical use. The U.S. Department of Justice has said it will not generally prosecute ill people under doctors’ care whose use of the drug complies with state rules. New Jersey will become the 14th state to allow therapeutic use of marijuana, and the number is likely to grow. Illinois and New York, among others, are considering new laws.

As the legal landscape for patients clears somewhat, the medical one remains confusing, largely because of limited scientific studies. A recent American Medical Association review found fewer than 20 randomized, controlled clinical trials of smoked marijuana for all possible uses. These involved around 300 people in all—well short of the evidence typically required for a pharmaceutical to be marketed in the U.S.

Doctors say the studies that have been done suggest marijuana can benefit patients in the areas of managing neuropathic pain, which is caused by certain types of nerve injury, and in bolstering appetite and treating nausea, for instance in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. “The evidence is mounting” for those uses, says Igor Grant, director of the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research at the University of California, San Diego.

But in a range of other conditions for which marijuana has been considered, such as epilepsy and immune diseases like lupus, there’s scant and inconclusive research to show the drug’s effectiveness. Marijuana also has been tied to side effects including a racing heart and short-term memory loss and, in at least a few cases, anxiety and psychotic experiences such as hallucinations. The Food and Drug Administration doesn’t regulate marijuana, so the quality and potency of the product available in medical-marijuana dispensaries can vary.

Though states have been legalizing medical use of marijuana since 1996, when California passed a ballot initiative, the idea remains controversial. Opponents say such laws can open a door to wider cultivation and use of the drug by people without serious medical conditions. That concern is heightened, they say, when broadly written statutes, such as California’s, allow wide leeway for doctors to decide when to write marijuana recommendations.

But advocates of medical-marijuana laws say certain seriously ill patients can benefit from the drug and should be able to access it with a doctor’s permission. They argue that some patients may get better results from marijuana than from available prescription drugs.

Glenn Osaki, 51, a technology consultant from Pleasanton, Calif., says he smokes marijuana to counter nausea and pain. Diagnosed in 2005 with advanced colon cancer, he has had his entire colon removed, creating digestive problems, and suffers neuropathic pain in his hands and feet from a chemotherapy drug. He says smoking marijuana was more effective and faster than prescription drugs he tried, including one that is a synthetic version of marijuana’s most active ingredient, known as THC.

The relatively limited research supporting medical marijuana poses practical challenges for doctors and patients who want to consider it as a therapeutic option. It’s often unclear when, or whether, it might work better than traditional drugs for particular people. Unlike prescription drugs it comes with no established dosing regimen.

“I don’t know what to recommend to patients about what to use, how much to use, where to get it,” says Scott Fishman, chief of pain medicine at the University of California, Davis medical school, who says he rarely writes marijuana recommendations, typically only at a patient’s request.

Researchers say it’s difficult to get funding and federal approval for marijuana research. In November, the AMA urged the federal government to review marijuana’s position in the most-restricted category of drugs, so it could be studied more easily.

Gregory T. Carter, a University of Washington professor of rehabilitation medicine, says he’s developed his own procedures for recommending marijuana, which he does for some patients with serious neuromuscular conditions such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, to treat pain and other symptoms. He typically urges those who haven’t tried it before to start with a few puffs using a vaporizer, which heats the marijuana to release its active chemicals, then wait 10 minutes. He warns them to have family nearby and to avoid driving, and he checks back with them after a few days. Many are “surprised at how mild” the drug’s psychotropic effects are, he says.

States’ rules on growing and dispensing medical marijuana vary. Some states license specialized dispensaries. These can range from small storefronts to bigger operations that feel more like pharmacies. Typically, they have security procedures to limit walk-in visitors.

At least a few dispensaries say they inspect their suppliers and use labs to check the potency of their product, though states don’t generally require such measures. “It’s difficult to understand how we can call it medicine if we don’t know what’s in it,” says Stephen DeAngelo, executive director of the Harborside Health Center, a medical-marijuana dispensary in Oakland, Calif.

Some of the strongest research results support the idea of using marijuana to relieve neuropathic pain. For example, a trial of 50 AIDS patients published in the journal Neurology in 2007 found that 52% of those who smoked marijuana reported a 30% or greater reduction in pain. Just 24% of those who got placebo cigarettes reported the same lessening of pain.

Marijuana has also been shown to affect nausea and appetite. The AMA review said three controlled studies with 43 total participants showed a “modest” anti-nausea effect of smoked marijuana in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Studies of HIV-positive patients have suggested that smoked marijuana can improve appetite and trigger weight gain.

Donald Abrams, a doctor and professor at the University of California, San Francisco who has studied marijuana, says he recommends it to some cancer patients, including those who haven’t found standard anti-nausea drugs effective and some with loss of appetite.

Side effects can be a problem for some people. Thea Sagen, 62, an advanced neuroendocrine cancer patient in Seaside, Calif., says she expected something like a pharmacy when she went to a marijuana dispensary mentioned by her oncologist. She says she was disappointed to find that the staffers couldn’t say which of the products, with names like Pot ‘o Gold and Blockbuster, might boost her flagging appetite or soothe her anxiety. “They said, ‘it’s trial and error,’ “she says. “I was in there flying blind, looking at all this stuff.”

Ms. Sagen says she bought several items and tried one-eighth teaspoon of marijuana-infused honey. After a few hours, she was hallucinating , too dizzy and confused to dress herself for a doctor’s appointment. Then came vomiting far worse than her stomach upset before she took the drug. When she reported the side effects to her oncologist’s nurse and her primary-care physician, she got no guidance. She doesn’t take the drug now. But with advice from a nutritionist, her appetite and food intake have improved, she says.

Other marijuana users may experience the well-known reduction in ability to concentrate. At least a few users suffer troubling short-term psychiatric side effects, which can include anxiety and panic. More controversially, an analysis published in the journal Lancet in 2007 tied marijuana use to a higher rate of psychotic conditions such as schizophrenia. But the analysis noted that such a link doesn’t necessarily show marijuana is a cause of the conditions.

Long-term marijuana use can lead to physical dependence, though it is not as addictive as nicotine or alcohol, says Margaret Haney, a professor at Columbia University’s medical school. Smoked marijuana may also risk lung irritation, but a large 2006 study, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, found no tie to lung cancer.

Some studies and reviews examining the possible medical uses, and side effects, of marijuana are being conducted by.

    * Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, University of California

    * American College of Physicians

    * Institute of Medicine

To read more on Marijuana and its effectiveness, the following periodicals have spent time reviewing certain aspects of medical marijuana.

To treat pain:

    * Neurology

    * Journal of Pain

    * Neuropsychopharmacology

To treat nausea:

    * Annals of Internal Medicine

    * Cancer

    * Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior

To restore appetite:

    * Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome

    * Psychopharmacology

To treat spasticity:

    * Neurologist

Overviews of Potential Side Effects:

    * Canadian Medical Association Journal

    * Clinical Toxicology

Mental Effects:

    * Neuropsychology Review

    * Lancet

Withdrawal:

    * Current Psychiatry Reports

    * Current Opinion in Psychiatry

Effects on Lungs

    * Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention

 

 

Here Are Some Terms Used in Homeopathy – Easier to Understand

Here Are Some Terms Used in Homeopathy – Easier to Understand

Terms of homeopathy seem confusing sometimes particularly for them who never know about homeopathy before. Basically, homeopathy is formed from the word “Homeo” and “pathy”. “Homeo” means similar or same, while “pathy” means pain. The base of this alternative medication is concentrates on the use of natural substances to stimulate the mind and the body in order to heal the diseases. For detail knowledge of terms of homeopathy, you might need to read the information below.

Glossary of Terms

In the terms of homeopathy, you’ll find aggravation. It is a name for an obvious enhancement in the symptoms of the disease. Then there’s also an antidote for a material or a remedy that neutralizes the effects of homeopathy medication. Dose that is recommended might be given an antidote to counteract the effect when the patient is not responding well to the homeopathy.

Tissue salts termed as cell salts and biochemic remedies are several of the most important terms of homeopathy. According to homeopaths, use twelve dissimilar salts are significant for the functioning of the body. These cell salts are prepared in low potency and used under homeopathic signs.

Symptoms that are general to a specific sickness or disease like yellow skin in jaundice are known as a common symptom. In terms of homeopathy, symptom of concomitant refers to the symptom that happens at the same time as the main complaint. Those symptoms that refer to location etiology, concomitants sensation and modalities all together give what is known as complete symptom.

Centesimal is one of the three effectiveness scales used in the homeopathy pharmacy. It’s the process of repeated dilutions and successions. In terms of homeopathy and its standards, it’s notated by 10 or 100 scales.

Taking one part of the medicinal substance, tincture or dry blended with alcohol or 99 parts of lactose, and shaken will result 1c potency. In the other hand, taking 1 part of this potency and mixing it with 99 parts of lactose or alcohol and then shaken will yield 2c. A 300c has gone through this process 300 times. A 1M has gone through the process 1000 times.

Furthermore, the decimal scale is the other potency scale in terms of homeopathy. This is a process of taking one part of the medicinal element and blending it with 9 parts of diluents, and shaken well determines a 1X (D) potency.

One part of this potency and 9 parts of diluents, then successes, yields 2X (D) potency. This continuous till the desired potency is reached. The third potency scale is the LM(50 millesimal, Q) conceived by Hahnemann. Effectiveness refers to the strength of homeopathic remedy in terms of homeopathy.

If you’re keen on implementing homeopathy into your life, you are recommended to comprehend the terms of homeopathy. By knowing the terms of homeopathy before implementing homeopathy into life, it will make you easier to gain its advantage.

Using Glutathione Therapy For Parkinsons Symptoms

Anyone living with Parkinson’s disease knows that there are good and bad days. For days when there are challenges, a new treatment, one that is relatively inexpensive, effective, and safe has been discovered.

Not only is this a safe solution for treating Parkinson’s disease, it is also highly effective. This means people with this disease have a fighting chance for normalcy. While it does not cure the disease, IV Glutathione therapy does slow down the progression.

In clinical trials, results show that up to 90% of participants using Glutathione therapy experience significant improvement. In the case of Parkinson’s, the brain’s dopamine receptors lose their sensitivity but with Glutathione, the receptors are restored to normal function.

With this form of treatment, dopamine within the brain is able to function more effectively. This means dopamine sensitivity is improved, as well as the brain’s serotonin levels that can help decrease levels of depression.

In most cases of Glutathione therapy and Parkinson’s, the patient is given 1,400 milligrams on a daily basis with saline. Using an IV drip for ten minutes, three times each week grants the medication to enter the bloodstream so it can get to work swiftly.

 

Although there’s oral Glutathione medication, IV Glutathione therapy is the only way in which Parkinson’s disease should be treated, making it much more effective. Depending on the physician providing the treatment, some will also add various drugs and herbs such as milk thistle and amino acids.

The advances seen over the years pertaining to IV Glutathione therapy are incredible. This allows Parkinson’s patients to get off medications such as Levodopa that have harsh side effects. Anyone interested in this treatment option should remain on any prescribed drugs and then speak to their doctor about eliminating them and switching over to Glutathione therapy.

There are so many wonderful benefits associated with IV Glutathione therapy but the number one is the elimination of side effects, something no patient wants to deal with. Not only do many of the traditional medications have side effects but some also come with serious health risk factors to include stroke and heart attack.

Although the cost of Glutathione therapy is a little higher than other options, it works exceptionally well. The good news is that most insurance companies are now providing partial or full coverage of this substance because it has been approved by the FDA.

Within a short time of a person with Parkinsons Symptoms being put on IV Glutathione therapy, they start to respond to the treatment. This means the patient starts to take back some control over his or her life. As you can imagine, both patients and medical professionals are anxious to get this treatment option out to the public. Although IV Glutathione therapy is used commonly to Parkinson’s, physicians are finding that it also helps with other health problems such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and so on.

If you’ve Parkinson’s disease or another illness mentioned and find that current treatment is not providing you with the needed relief, then Glutathione therapy could be the perfect solution. More and more, this treatment option is becoming accepted among medical professionals and it might be the exact treatment you need.

US House Bill 3962 – Will Limit Alternative Health Care

US House Bill 3962 – Will Limit Alternative Health Care

House Bill 3962, in an effort to control costs, creates a new layer of government bureaucracy that inserts itself between the doctor and the patient.

A national health commissioner and task forces will evaluate and decide everything from what medications a physician will be allowed to prescribe for a patient, to what surgery will be approved, to what outcomes will be expected for a particular medical condition.

The ‘universal healthcare Czar’ along with the task forces will also decide whether or not hospitals will be reimbursed for care rendered based on predetermined outcomes. For example, if a patient is re-admitted within a prescribed number of days after discharge, the hospital will not be reimbursed for care given. It does not take into account factors such as how ill a patient may be.

This new layer of government effectively removes the power of the individual physician and patient to decide what is the best course of treatment.

Why should you care?

You should care because the application of evidence-based medicine can potentially limit health choices of both patients and physicians.  In the reformed healthcare system recommended by Congress, alternative treatments will be pressured to end, and physicians who practice alternative medicine in extreme cases will be criminalized. The money in the system will continue to flow to well funded studies underwritten by the pharmaceutical industry, and those companies without deep pockets will continue to be unable to afford the cost of  in depth studies to critically evaluate the efficacy of such treatments.

 Alternative treatments will fail to pass the standard of evidence-based medicine precisely because they lack the funds to enter the game, and thus the cycle will continue. In short, if alternative treatments are not evaluated by the guidelines of evidence based medicine, they will never be accepted as a valued treatment option.

It can also be argued that evidence-based medicine has exponentially increased the cost of health care. In theory, the essence of evidence-based medicine is science. However, in practice it has become more about money. The system has become one where the pharmaceutical industry has been given the edge. For example:

    * Many of the prescription drug trials are not independent

They are often funded by the very drug companies that stand to gain if their drug is found to be effective in trials and is approved

    * The relationship between medical societies and the pharmaceutical industry raises questions.

Over the past 10-15 years there has been a change in the parameters of our most common diseases (hypertension, obesity and high cholesterol ). For example, in the past normal blood pressure was 120/80, and now  it is 115/75.  In fact, those with a blood pressure of 120/80 are now considered to be pre-hypertensive and are eligible for medication.

The body mass index (BMI) number for obesity decreased from 40 to 30 while the parameters for being overweight have expanded from a BMI of 27.8 in 1995 to less than 25 today. High cholesterol (LDL) is now < 200 instead of the old parameter of  < 250.

The change in parameters have meant both a dramatic increase in the number of people who meet criteria for treatment with prescription drugs along with a resultant rise in the cost of healthcare. The question that has yet to be answered – why are we less healthy despite taking ever increasing amounts of prescription medication?

    * There is a tight financial relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical industry.

The AMA, medical education and the underwriting of medical research has given the pharmaceutical industry a great advantage in the shaping of medical opinion and by extension evidence-based medicine.

    * There is a revolving door between those who work for the FDA and those who have worked in the pharmaceutical industry.

This cozy relationship raises the importance of Big Pharma and relegates natural/alternative methods to junk science. Inherently, this should make those of us who are critical thinkers question the statements that summarily denigrate the supplement industry which makes products, that in many cases are in direct competition with the drugs that are manufactured by pharmaceutical companies, but don’t need patents.

A more balanced approach to our healthcare system is necessary. If the same standard is applied to both alternative and conventional treatments, each will be given a level playing field to determine efficacy. This change would go a long way towards accomplishing the task of improving the health of Americans without bankrupting them.

Let’s try something new like  promoting prevention and wellness instead of just talking about it or actually giving  doctors and patients the freedom to choose how they approach health choices. No one can argue with the fact that a healthier population, will lead to a significant decrease in healthcare costs.  The current system clearly is not working.

What Types of Eggs Are Best For You and How to Eat Them

True free-range eggs are far more nutritious than commercially raised eggs.

Compared to official U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutrient data for commercial eggs, eggs from hens raised on pasture may contain:

    * 1/3 less cholesterol

    * 1/4 less saturated fat

    * 2/3 more vitamin A

    * 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids

    * 3 times more vitamin E

    * 7 times more beta carotene

These dramatically differing nutrient levels are most likely the result of the differences in diet between free-range pastured hens, vs. commercially farmed hens.

Without citing any research of their own, most egg industry advocates hold fast to their claim that commercially farmed eggs are no different from pastured eggs, and that hens’ diets do not alter their eggs nutritional value in any significant way.

Eggs are one of the healthiest foods in the world, and at their very best if you eat them raw. But the quality of your eggs is also important.

The REAL Definition of Free-Range Eggs

As this article clearly states, the nutritional difference between true free-range eggs and commercially farmed eggs is not an occasional fluke or misprint, as these findings are being backed up with a mounting body of evidence.    

The fact that the USDA and other organizations (which are often funded or influenced by industry) refuse to acknowledge that there is a direct link between the diet of the bird and the nutritional value of their eggs, is a clear indicator that there are strong financial incentives at work – not nutritional science. Because clearly, “garbage in, garbage out” applies here as well. This general rule will never change – it applies equally to hens, beef cattle, dairy cows, and your own body.

And don’t be fooled by the egg industry’s double-speak definitions of what free-range really is. True free-range eggs are from hens that range freely outdoors on a pasture where they can forage for their natural diet, which includes seeds, green plants, insects, and worms. A hen that is let outside into a barren lot for a few minutes a day but is fed a diet of corn, soy, and cottonseed meals, plus synthetic additives, is NOT a free-range hen, and will not produce the same quality eggs as its foraging counterpart.

An additional issue that is important, but not discussed here, is the fact that the main ingredients of commercially raised hens’ diets are genetically modified (GM). 

The three main GM ingredients in the United States’ food supply are corn, soy, and cottonseed. All the more reason to stay away from commercial eggs, even if they state “free-range” on their label.

Which Eggs to Buy, and Which You Should Avoid

Additionally, I would STRONGLY encourage you to AVOID ALL omega-3 eggs, as they are actually LESS healthy for you. Typically, the animals are fed poor-quality sources of omega-3 fats that are already oxidized. Also, omega-3 eggs do not last anywhere near as long as non-omega-3 eggs. Remember, omega- 3 eggs are highly perishable and should be avoided.

If you have to purchase your eggs from a commercial grocery store, I would advise getting free-range organic. Ideally, if at all possible  it would be far preferable to purchase your eggs directly from your local farmer, because this way you can be certain of the quality. This may not be as hard as you think. In my experience, this is one of the easiest foods to find from local farmers. To find free-range pasture farms you can try you local health food store or  try:

     www.eatwild.com

    www.localharvest.org 

If you cannot find a farmer to sell you eggs directly, and you’re not interested in raising your own, then organic eggs from the store would be your next best option. 

It is also wise to NOT refrigerate your eggs. If you have ever been to Europe or South America and gone into the grocery stores, you will know that this practice of non-refrigeration is common in those countries.

How to Eat Your Eggs for Maximum Health Benefits

Eggs are often one of your most allergenic foods, but I believe this is because they are cooked. If you consume your eggs in their raw state, the incidence of egg allergy virtually disappears. Heating the egg protein actually changes its chemical shape, and the distortion can easily lead to allergies.

It is my belief that eating eggs raw helps preserve many of the highly perishable nutrients such as lutein and zeaxanthin, which are powerful prevention elements of the most common cause of blindness: age-related macular degeneration.

Fresh raw egg yolk tastes like vanilla. It can be eaten “Rocky style,” combined with avocado or in a shake with whey protein powder, raw kefir, or a small amount of berries. However, egg protein is easily damaged on a molecular level, even by mixing/blending. If you choose not to eat your eggs raw, cooking them soft-boiled would be your next best option.

Scrambling your eggs is one of the worst ways to eat eggs as it actually oxidizes the cholesterol in the egg yolk. If you have high cholesterol this may actually be a problem for you as the oxidized cholesterol may cause some damage in your body.

If you are not used to eating fresh raw eggs, you should start by eating just a tiny bit of it on a daily basis, and then gradually increase the portions. 

For example, start by consuming only a few drops of raw egg yolk a day for the first three days. Gradually increase the amount that you consume in three-day increments. Try half a teaspoon for three days, then one teaspoon, then two teaspoons. When you are accustomed to that amount, increase it to one raw egg per day and subsequently to two raw eggs per day or more. 

One should not consume raw egg whites without the yolks as raw egg whites contain avidin, which can bind to biotin. If you cook the egg white the avidin is not an issue.  However if you consume them with raw egg yolk (whole egg) there is more than enough biotin in the yolk to compensate for the avidin binding.

There is a potential problem with using the entire raw egg if you are pregnant. Biotin deficiency is a common concern in pregnancy and it is possible that consuming whole raw eggs would make it worse. If you are pregnant you have two options. The first is to actually measure for a biotin deficiency. This is best done through urinary excretion of 3-hydroxyisovaleric acid (3-HIA), which increases as a result of the decreased activity of the biotin-dependent enzyme methylcrotonyl-CoA carboxylase.

Alternatively, you could take a biotin supplement, or consume only the yolk raw (and cook the whites).

If you choose not to eat your eggs raw, cooking them soft-boiled would be the next best option.

Sweat Lodges, Steam Rooms Aren’t for Detox

BLOOMINGTON – The Web is filled with products and practices that promise to “detoxify” the body through various means, from extreme diets to spa treatments to sweating.

Though some may be relatively harmless, the desire to detox was brought to a tragic conclusion last fall when three participants died and several were made seriously ill during a pricey sweat lodge ceremony in Arizona. Self-help guru James Arthur Ray was arrested Feb. 3 and charged with three counts of manslaughter in the deaths.

Doctors say the notion that you can — or should — undertake special efforts to cleanse the body of impurities is not only not necessary but potentially dangerous. The body has evolved through time to detoxify itself through its own processes, said Dr. Rachel Vreeman, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine and co-author of Don’t Swallow Your Gum! Myths, Half-Truths and Outright Lies About Your Body and Health.

When it comes to removing toxins from the body, several organs are designed to do just that.

    * The liver plays a major role in breaking down and filtering substances from the bloodstream that the body can’t use.

    * The kidneys remove substances such as urea, a byproduct of protein metabolism.

    * The gastrointestinal tract, including the colon, is also designed to get rid of what the body cannot use and to keep what it needs.

“There are myths that toxins clog up or get stuck in these organs,” Vreeman said. “That is just not true.”

And without a doubt, she said, sweating definitely would not be the way to go about it.

The primary reason we sweat is to regulate the body temperature. When moisture produced by the sweat glands evaporates, it cools the body.

Though the main component of sweat is water, sweat does contain small amounts of dissolved minerals and trace elements, including sodium, lactate, urea, potassium, calcium, magnesium, zinc, copper, nickel, iron, chromium — none of which are considered toxic, Vreeman said.

When you sweat, the major thing you lose is water — something your body can’t survive long without.

“The term ‘detoxify’ is used so often that it makes people think that special steps need to be taken so ‘detoxifying’ happens,” Vreeman said. “It leads to people not trusting their bodies. Your body, however, does not need special cleansing efforts. What it does need is for you to get enough fluids and to eat a healthy, balanced diet.”

That’s not to say sweating, or spending time in a sauna, has been proven to have no health benefits.

Some studies have indicated that saunas lower blood pressure, enhance blood flow and improve cardiac functioning in people with congestive heart failure or other cardiovascular disease, Vreeman said. One study found weak evidence that saunas could help with chronic pain, and another showed minor benefits for some with chronic fatigue syndrome. There have been almost no studies done specifically on steam rooms or sweat lodges.

Western medicine has largely ignored sweat lodges, but they continue to play a significant role in Native American culture, said David Delgado Shorter, an associate professor of world arts and cultures at the University of California, Los Angeles.

“Sweats” have been used for many centuries to purify the mind and body among tribes throughout the Americas, Shorter said. Women in Mayan and Aztec culture, for example, used them as a fertility ritual, and men among the Plains tribes used sweats in preparation for hunts, among other reasons.

“The combination of the physical, emotional, psychological and religious is something many tribes find incredibly important and have fought for their right to do that,” Shorter said.

During earlier times, when colonial settlers and government agents were sometimes violently suppressing Native American religion and culture, tribes fought to hold on to the tradition, for both spiritual and practical reasons. Sweat lodges offered a private place to sing, pray and gather.

That’s why many in the Native American community take offense to non-Native Americans co-opting and charging for participation in sweat lodges, Shorter said.

Anyone thinking of participating in a sweat lodge ceremony or something approximating it should exercise caution, experts say. In harsh environments, hot or cold, the body will work hard to balance how much heat it makes and how much it loses. But if you are in conditions that are too hot for too long, the body may not be able to cool you off sufficiently.

In Arizona, in addition to those who died, 18 people were hospitalized with burns, dehydration, respiratory arrest or kidney failure, according to published reports. Participants, who had paid $9,695 for the “Spiritual Warrior” retreat, said that some people were vomiting, lethargic and collapsing after an hour into the session.

“These are all signs of heat illness and are warnings that your body cannot keep itself cool,” Vreeman said. “Vomiting, thirst, dizziness, being uncoordinated or clumsy are all signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Heat illness can kill you and should be treated as an emergency.”

Someone who becomes overheated should get to a cool place, drink fluids and seek medical care, Vreeman said. People with heart conditions should always talk to their doctor before trying a sweat lodge or sauna.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more on heat illness.