Add Acerola to your Diet

Did You Know…

… that the acerola fruit can help you lose weight, protect against cancer and heart disease, and boost your immune system with more vitamin C power than an orange?

     Similar in appearance to a red cherry, the acerola fruit originates from Mexico and from Central and South America.  Continue reading

Six Remedies to Help Combat Your Allergies

Allergy season is thankfully slipping away. While the memory is fresh, take charge of next year’s misery by testing the waters these with six homeopathic remedies for ragweed and hay fever.

1. Dulcamara
Solanum dulcamara, a.k.a. “bittersweet,” is a herb that’s good for those whose allergies cause them to feel chills, react strongly to damp conditions, experience aches and pains, and even have some anxious symptoms. Continue reading

Natural Allergy Treatment for Hay Fever

Mother Nature provides us several natural antihistamines, which relieve hay fever symptoms really effective, sometimes more effective than expensive medicines.

So, let’s look at a natural-herbal solution for hay fever problems:

Apple Cider Vinegar

First of all our old folk remedy, Apple Cider Vinegar, is extremely helpful in the prevention and treatment of allergy. Best is organic, raw, unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar with the ‘mother’.

Mix 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar in a glass of water (250ml) and gulp the mixture at once. Continue reading

Bromelain – Find Health with the Healing Qualities of Proteolytic Enzymes

Pineapples have long had a tradition for their healing qualities among the natives of Central and South America. Bromelain is a powerful proteolytic enzyme from the juice and stems of pineapples. It is very helpful for aiding the digestive processes. It has also shown very powerful anti-inflammatory properties that have caught the attention of nutritional researchers.

Bromelain can refer to either of 2 enzymes: Stem Bromelain and Fruit Bromelain. These are referred to as sulfhydryl proteases since a cysteine side-chain of free sulfhydryl group is present in the structure. The stem form is the most common commercial source due to the wide availability after the fruit is harvested. (1-2)

Bromelain has been used Continue reading

Bentonite Clay’s Health Benefits

Bentonite clay, also known as Montmorillonite, is used in many treatments both internally and externally. As a detox aid Bentonite clay is valued for its ability to swell and absorb toxins from the body relieving symptoms associated with toxin build up. Externally bentonite can be used to sooth a myriad of skin ailments.

  1. Properties
    • Bentonite clay often contains magnesium and up to 67 other trace minerals. Clays from different sources have different properties; some examples of bentonite clays are sodium bentonite, magnesium bentonite and calcium bentonite. Bentonite clay comes from deposits of volcanic ash that has settled over thousands of years. As the ash settles through the earth it absorbs different nutrients from the earth. It is the absorption process that makes clay such a beneficial detoxification in the body, absorbing toxins and carrying them through the system.

How It Works Continue reading

Myths Related to Spring Allergies

WASHINGTON – Not satisfied with the kind of information available pertaining to spring allergies and need something reliable? Well, here’s what you need to read. The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) and its allergist members, who are experts at diagnosing and treating allergies and asthma, have offered the following myth-busting advice: myth: over-the-counter (OTC, or nonprescription) oral antihistamines are just as effective as prescription medicines in controlling your stuffy nose. Act: TC antihistamines can help control some allergy symptoms but they have little effect on relieving a stuffy nose or the inflammation that often occurs with allergies. They also can make you drowsy. If your OTC medicine is not helping your stuffy nose or is causing side effects, your best bet is to see an allergist.

“We can prescribe more effective anti-inflammatory medications. But more importantly than that, also we can find the source of your suffering rather than just treating the symptoms,” said allergist Myron Zitt, of ACAAI.yth: TC decongestant nasal sprays are addictive act: TC decongestant nasal sprays are not technically addictive. However, if you overuse them, it may seem as though they are because you may need to use more and more to get relief from the congestion. To combat this, don’t use an OTC decongestant nasal spray more than three days in a row, and talk to your allergist about prescription nasal sprays containing steroids.yth:

Eating local honey will combat spring allergies.

Fact:

Local honey is made from the pollen of local flowers, so it might seem logical that eating it would increase your allergy tolerance. However, the pollens that cause spring allergies are produced by trees, grasses and weeds, not the showy flowers that bees buzz around. In fact, eating honey can be risky for some people, who could have an allergic reaction.

Myth:

Pollen allergy won’t lead to food allergy.

Fact:

Actually, about one third of people with pollen allergies also may react to certain foods. The reaction – called oral allergy syndrome or pollen-food allergy – is usually mild, including an itchy, tingling mouth, throat or lips. It has to do with similar proteins in the pollens.

Myth:

Allergy shots require too much time and are more expensive than taking medicine to relieve symptoms.

Fact:

Depending on how bothersome your allergies are, immunotherapy (allergy shots) may actually save you money and improve your quality of life. In fact, a recent study showed that immunotherapy reduced total health care costs in children with allergic rhinitis (hay fever) by one-third, and prescription costs by 16 percent.

Myth:

A blood test is the best test to diagnose allergies.

Fact:

Actually skin tests are more sensitive than blood tests. In skin testing, the skin on the inside of the arms or the back is pricked with a tiny bit of an allergen. If you’re allergic, the site will become red and swollen. Skin testing is very safe when performed by an allergist, even in infants and young children. But no single test alone provides the entire picture.

Hay Fever Symptoms Reduced with Pycnogenol

You might ward off and reduce allergy and hay fever symptoms if you take a pine bark supplement known as Pycnogenol® several weeks before allergy season starts, according to a study published in Phytotherapy Research. Pycnogenol appears to reduce hay fever symptoms such as itchy eyes and nasal congestion.

About 60 million people in the United States experience symptoms of hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, according to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology. Symptoms typically include inflamed nasal passages, sneezing, mucus production, rash, hives, itchy mouth, and itching, burning, watering eyes as well as facial pain and decreased sense of smell and taste.

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study was conducted by KGK Synergize, Inc., which recruited 60 individuals ages 18 to 65 who had all tested positive for birch pollen allergies. The participants began treatment three to eight weeks before onset of the birch allergy season in Ontario, Canada. Subjects were given instructions to take either one 50-mg Pycnogenol tablet or one placebo tablet twice daily throughout the allergy season (mid April to end of May). They were also allowed to take nonprescription antihistamines as needed, and they had to record use of these medications in treatment journals.

The participants were instructed to rate their nasal and eye symptoms each day using a questionnaire. All hay fever symptoms were rated on a scale ranging from zero (no symptoms) to three (severe symptoms completely prevented normal activities).

Throughout the entire allergy season, participants who took Pycnogenol scored lower on total average nasal and eye symptoms than those in the placebo group. A closer evaluation revealed that taking Pycnogenol was more effective the earlier the patients began taking it before allergy season started. The researchers speculated that for best results, individuals should begin taking Pycnogenol at least five weeks before pollen season starts.

In fact, only 12.5 percent of patients who began taking Pycnogenol seven weeks before the birch season began needed nonprescription antihistamines compared with 50 percent of patients who took placebo. Dr. Malkanthi Evans, scientific director of KGK Synergize Inc., noted that people with hay fever who want alternatives to medications that can cause side effects may find that Pycnogenol is “an effective and completely natural solution, void of any side-effects.”

Pycnogenol is an extract from the bark of the maritime pine tree that grows along the coast of southwest France. It contains a variety of phytochemicals, including procyanidins, bioflavonoids, and organic acids, which have been studied for their beneficial properties. Some studies have shown pycnogenol to be helpful in treating osteoarthritis, hemorrhoids, menopausal symptoms, and even attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

In an earlier study, researchers at Loma Linda University compared the use of Pycnogenol with placebo in a group of 60 individuals who had mild to moderate asthma. Subjects who took Pycnogenol experience a significant improvement in pulmonary function and asthma symptoms when compared with the placebo group. Pycnogenol users were also able to reduce or stop their use of rescue inhalers more often than those in the placebo group.

Although hay fever symptoms may seem trivial to people who do not suffer with this allergic condition, Dr. Evans notes that “people suffering from hay fever may disagree as they experience a dramatic impairment to their quality of life.” Pycnogenol offers an effective, natural alternative to medications to treat symptoms of hay fever.