How often do you eat cherries? 7 Reasons to eat more

Cherries are small, round, dark red stone fruits that may taste sweet or tart (sour), depending on the variety. When you eat cherries, you enjoy much more than their delicious taste because they offer many health benefits. Here are seven reasons why you should start eating this amazing fruit today: Continue reading

How to Lose Weight by Identifying Hidden Sugars in Your Diet

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A new book reveals how and where sugars are hidden in your diet, and provides practical tips on how to wean yourself from this pernicious ingredient that will decimate your health Continue reading

7 Underrated Medicinal Plants

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The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 80 percent of the world’s population still uses traditional remedies, including plants, as their primary health care tools Continue reading

Ginger’s Many Evidence-Based Health Benefits Revealed

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Ginger has broad-spectrum antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant, and anti-parasitic properties, to name just several of its more than 40 pharmacological actions

Ginger is anti-inflammatory, making it valuable for Continue reading

Confessions of a Renegade Psychiatrist

I felt this sensation in the pit of my stomach – it was a combination of sympathy and anger – listening to Annie tell me, through tears, about her postpartum journey into the world of psychiatry. 

Three separate psychiatrists dismissed me when I expressed concerns about taking an addictive medication like Klonopin.  It’s been two years, I can’t get off it, I’m on 4 psych meds and I feel worse than I ever did before I started this treatment. Continue reading

Gluten: Bad for us All!

All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”

Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher (1788 – 1860)

Here we present you with the evidence of the universal harm of gluten

Gluten: ZERO global

By this I mean a worldwide change to a gluten-free diet. Continue reading

Teens Susceptible to Hepatitis B Infection despite Vaccination as Infants

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  • If you are opposed to the hepatitis B vaccine for your baby at birth, you can amend the “consent for medical treatment” forms you sign upon entering the hospital before giving birth by writing on the form that you do not give consent for your baby’s hepatitis B vaccination but, unfortunately, that is no guarantee Continue reading

The Foods That Can Fight Aging

Aging populations have spent lifetimes searching for the fountain of youth. Unfortunately, no such fountain seems to exist. There are, however, droplets of youth. By combining enough of these droplets together, you may not find the fountain you’ve been seeking, but you can still refresh yourself with a splash of youthful vigor. Continue reading

Consider This Therapy before Knee Surgery

Mark down a new health breakthrough for the ancient therapy known as acupuncture. Osteoarthritis of the knee is the most common form of joint pain in the world. The answer, for many, is knee replacement surgery. But what if acupuncture could be used instead?

When acupuncture burst onto the scene in the U.S., Continue reading

Ancient Chinese Remedy Could Soothe Joint Pain

Rheumatoid arthritis is a form of joint pain caused by a faulty immune system. As such, it is difficult to control. In the absence of the ability to cure it, patients strive to find ways to limit the pain. So here are your seven best bets from Traditional Chinese Medicine.

1. “Wang Bi” Granules: There are 18 ingredients in this formula, Continue reading

Major Secret in Achieving Joint Pain Relief

  • Exercise helps prevent and relieve joint pain through a number of mechanisms, including strengthening key supportive muscles, restoring flexibility, improving bone density and joint function, and facilitating weight loss
  • Proper exercises will not damage your joints; instead research suggests exercise has a positive impact on joint tissues
  • Inactivity promotes muscle weakness, joint contractures, and loss of range of motion, which can lead to more pain and loss of function, and even less activity. To break this potentially devastating cycle, regular exercise is essential
  • If you have significant pain with movement, you may want to work with a physical therapist or qualified personal trainer who can develop a safe workout program for you

By Dr. Mercola

Joint pain is incredibly common, impacting an estimated 30 percent of U.S. adults and causing pain, swelling and stiffness that can range from mildly irritating to completely debilitating. Continue reading

New Benefits of Chondroitin Discovered

Over the past decade, the natural supplement chondroitin has risen into discussion about treating joint pain. It is often teamed with glucosamine for this effect. A great piece of health news has just come out, suggesting that chondroitin sulfate improves hand function and relieves morning stiffness caused by osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis is the world’s leading cause of joint pain. It is caused by the gradual deterioration of cartilage in a joint. The disease affects more than 27 million adults in the U.S., causing pain and stiffness. Approximately 10% of the world population, 60 years and older, have symptomatic osteoarthritis. And prior studies have found that 20% to 30% of adults have osteoarthritis of the hand, with the prevalence rising to more than 50% after 60 years of age. Continue reading

Your Hands Reflect Your Health

They’re one of the most important parts of our body when it comes to day-to-day activities; without them we couldn’t cut vegetables, grip pliers, or text our friends. They’re revealing, too: Not only do scars and age spots recount our personal history but mystics all the way back to prehistory have “read” our futures in their lines and whorls.

But what if your hands could say more about you than that? What if, looking down at your palms and the five digits attached to them, you could discover early signs of dangerous diseases you didn’t yet know you had? “It used to be common for doctors to look at the hands for important clues to overall health,” says endocrinologist Kenneth Blanchard of  Continue reading

CDC Says 50 Million Americans Suffer Joint Pain – Arthritis

A surprising jump in the number of Americans hobbled by arthritis may be due to obesity, health experts said.

About 22 percent of U.S. adults have been told by a doctor that they have arthritis, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. The statistic comes from national telephone polling of tens of thousands of adults in 2007 through 2009.

That translates to nearly 50 million people with the joint disease. It’s also roughly the same percentage with arthritis as reported in a 2003-2005 study.

But there was a significant jump in adults who said their joint pain or other arthritis symptoms limited their usual activities, to 9.4 percent from 8.3 percent. That means more than 21 million adults have trouble climbing stairs, dressing, gardening or doing other things, up from less than 19 million only a few years before, the CDC researchers estimated.

That jump was “more than we would have expected,” said Dr. John Klippel, president of the Atlanta-based Arthritis Foundation.

Klippel said the increase probably was due mainly to baby boomers, who are at an age when they are more likely to suffer osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. It breaks down cartilage and causes pain and joint stiffness.

He added that a complicating factor is high rates of baby boomers who are overweight and obese. Extra weight puts more pressure on arthritic joints, making the problem worse, he said.

The percentage of people who were hobbled was more than twice as high in obese people as those who were normal weight or were underweight, the CDC researchers found. Obesity can lead to or worsen osteoarthritis in the knees, the researchers wrote.

The study is published in a CDC publication, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Introducing – White Willow Bark

White willow bark is a tree native to Europe and Asia. The name “white willow” comes from the color of the leaves, which are covered with fine white hairs.

The use of white willow bark medicinally goes far back. Ancient Egyptians used white willow for inflammation. The Greek physician Hippocrates wrote about white willow’s medicinal uses in 5th century B.C.

In 1829, scientists in Europe identified what was believed to be the active ingredient in white willow bark—a compound called salicin. Public demand grew rapidly.

Extracting salicin from herbs was considered to be expensive and time-consuming, so a synthetic salicylic acid version was developed in Germany in 1852 and quickly became the treatment of choice (salicin is converted in the body to salicylic acid).

The problem was that it was harder on the stomach. At therapeutic doses, people using the synthetic salicyclic acid developed stomach ulcers and bleeding.

The German company Bayer eventually created a synthetic, less harsh derivative of salicylic acid, called acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), and mass-produced it under the name aspirin. Despite this, aspirin is still known for irritating the stomach lining.

Why do people use white willow bark?

White willow bark is used for conditions that cause pain, inflammation, or fever, such as:

    * Acute back pain

    * Fever

    * Flu

    * Joint pain

    * Osteoarthritis

    * Pain

People take white willow bark instead of aspirin because it does not appear to be as irritating to the stomach lining. It may be because the salicin found naturally in white willow bark is only converted to the acid form after it is absorbed by the stomach.

Researchers have also suggested that white willow bark is more effective than aspirin because of other active compounds that are found in the bark but not the drug. Animal research at Cairo University compared a willow bark extract to ASA and found that a willow bark extract was as effective as aspirin in reducing inflammation, even though the salicin content was lower than an equivalent dose of ASA.

What research has been done on white willow bark?

    * In a German study, the effectiveness of a willow bark extract providing 240 mg of salicin a day was compared to placebo in a 2-week randomized controlled trial in 78 people with osteoarthritis. After two weeks, the willow bark patients’ pain scores were reduced by 14% compared to the placebo group, which had a 2% increase in pain scores.

    * A randomized controlled trial published in the American Journal of Medicine examined the use of 120 mg or 240 mg salicin or placebo in 210 patients with an low back pain. In the fourth and final week of the study, 39% of the group taking 240 mg salicin were pain-free for at least 5 days, compared to 21% in the 120 mg group and only 6% in the placebo group.

    * Two randomized controlled 6-week trials investigated the effectiveness and safety of willow bark in 127 patients with hip and/or knee osteoarthritis and 26 patients with rheumatoid arthritis. In the osteoarthritis trial, patients received either willow bark providing 240 mg of salicin a day, 100 mg a day of the drug diclofenac, or a placebo. Patients in the rheumatoid arthritis trial received either willow bark or a placebo. The results found that the drug diclofenac was more effective than placebo in osteoarthritis patients but white willow bark was not. In rheumatoid arthritis patients, willow bark wasn’t found to be more effective than placebo.

Common Doses

Studies have used white willow bark extracts that provide 120 mg to 240 mg of salicin per day.

Safety

Because white willow bark contains salicylates, the same precautions as aspirin should be taken until research has shown otherwise. The following people should not take white willow bark:

    * People with an aspirin allergy or sensitivity. There has been a published report of a 25 year old woman who was admitted to emergency with anaphylaxis after taking 2 capsules of a weight loss supplement that contained willow bark. The patient had a history of allergy to acetylsalicylic acid. No other possible causes for anaphylaxis were identified in that patient.

    * People with peptic ulcer disease or kidney disease.

    * The herbs ginkgo, vitamin E, and garlic may increase the risk of bleeding if combined with white willow.

    * People with hyperuricemia, gout, and asthma.

    * Children and teenagers, especially with flu-like symptoms, chicken pox, or Reye’s syndrome.

    * Pregnant or nursing women.

White willow bark should be avoided two weeks before or after surgery.

Side effects

There have been few reported side effects. However, the same side effects as aspirin may theoretically occur, especially at higher doses: ringing in the ears, ulcers, stomach burning, pain, cramping, nausea, gastrointestinal bleeding and liver toxicity, rash, dizziness, and kidney impairment.