World-Wide Thyroid Crisis

Did you know that over 30% of the US has thyroid problems? Chronic fatigue, weight gain, dry skin and hair, constipation, heavy menstrual periods, thin or hairless lateral eyebrows, depression, even bipolar disease (2/3 of all bipolar patients become normal with correction to normal thyroid activity)—all of these are symptoms of low thyroid activity. The best method is not a blood test, but is to take your temperature instead. It is easy to find out. Just take your oral temperature a few times daily. If your temperature isn’t 98.6, but instead runs lower, then the latest thyroid research says that your thyroid needs treatment! It isn’t usually a simple deficiency of thyroid hormone but is instead a more complex problem with both the manufacture and the activation of thyroid hormone involved. The famous alternative thyroid researcher, Denis Wilson MD, said in a talk in January that the new herbal thyroid programs are vastly more effective than the hormonal protocols of the past. And they are so easy to use that Dr. Howell has prepared a generic prescription for people to treat themselves. (By the way, if your condition is complex, then you should have supervision to treat your thyroid problems. Just contact Dr. Howell’s daughter, Dr. Selena Eon at https://drselenaeon.com/?page_id=58 or talk with Dr. Howell at your appointment.)

Hydrotherapy – How to do it yourself

Hydrotherapy

People don’t realize how much they can do to help their health with water and cloth.

I was fortunate enough to have had some post-graduate training with one of the great naturopathic physicians specializing in hydrotherapy, Dr. Harold Dick, D.C., N.D.  He use to tell me that almost any disease can be cured with pure (appropriate) food and hydrotherapy. He proved this maxim daily for forty years in his practice. Although I found this is no longer true (because of the widespread usage of petrochemicals), I still think that it is essential for care of acute illnesses, and a useful adjunct for chronic diseases as well.

Essentially, all hydrotherapy is used to help the body to detoxify. The body has several ways to remove toxins from the system. One of these is the system known as the lymphatic system. The lymphatics are small tubules that carry extracellular fluids away from the cell and back into the circulation. The veins carry away the red blood cells, but the lymphatics carry away most of the cellular waste products.

There are junctions of these lymphatics. These junctions are called “lymph glands” or “lymph nodes.” Your heart does not pump the lymph through the lymphatic system. Instead, the lymphatics have complex systems of one-way “trap-doors” that only permit the fluid to move in one direction (towards the heart). When our skeletal muscles relax and contract, the lymphatics are squeezed, moving the lymph towards the heart.

When you get sick, you also get toxic. Many people get sick because of the toxins. Many people note that they have aching of the muscles when they are ill. The muscles ache because the cellular waste products are not carried away fast enough by the lymphatics. This is associated with inactivity of the muscles that surround the lymphatics. This is why people will report feeling a little better when they exercise mildly during their illness.

But often you can’t exercise when you are sick. Additionally, the body runs faster when ill (known as fever, a good thing), so it produces more waste products than usual. This causes the lymph to stagnate, and the cells of the body are unable to get rid of their waste products.

Hydrotherapy is used to help the lymphatic system to remove toxins faster. Of course, this can only help remove toxins that are already in solution, so this is not a primary detoxification technique. But hydrotherapy works great when you need to feel better quickly.

There are two techniques of hydrotherapy that I will write about here:

THE COLD SHEET TREATMENT

If you are alone, the hydrotherapy technique to use is the “cold sheet” treatment. To treat yourself with a cold sheet, you must:

1) Cover a table or a bed with a waterproof covering.

2) Find a water-resistant blanket (such as wool or latex).

3) Get a cotton sheet that has been rung out in cold water (not too cold if you are fragile).

4) Lay the latex blanket across the waterproofed bed.

5) After you take off your clothes, wrap the wet sheet around you from your neck to your feet.

6) Lay on the bed at one side of the blanket and roll up inside the blanket. Make sure that you are covered up as much as you can.

7) Now rest. At first you will be cold. Then you will begin to feel warm. Eventually you will get hot. You should perspire. When you can’t stand this anymore, (usually about thirty minutes) unwrap yourself and take a shower.  I have talked to ex-cigarette smokers who reported that their sweat was brown (from old cigarette tars?). This is one way that you can break a fever.

 

CONSTITUTIONAL HYDROTHERAPY

This is a modification of the original hydrotherapy techniques brought over from Germany over one hundred years ago by the original naturopaths. It is not as good as can be performed in a hydrotherapy-oriented clinic. For this treatment, you will need:

1) A person to assist you.

2) Four towels that reach from your “collar-bones” to your hips.

3) A bed or similar water-resistant surface to lay on comfortably.

4) A warm, water-resistant blanket (wool or latex).

The procedure:

1) Take off your clothes.

2) Lay on the table on your back.

3) Now the assistant should soak two of the towels in very warm water. Then wring out the towels.

4) Place the towels on the patient, covering the “collar-bones” to the brim of the pelvis (where the hips stick out).

5) Cover the patient with the blanket, tucking it around the feet.

6) Soak another towel in very warm water, and wring it out.

7) Soak the last towel in cold water, and wring it out.

8) After about five minutes, pull the blanket back.

9) Place the hot towel on top of the two cooling towels.

10) Flip the towel stack over.

11) Remove the two cooling towels.

12) Place the cold towel on the remaining hot towel.

13) Flip the towel stack over.

14) Remove the “hot” towel.

15) Cover the patient with the blanket, tucking it around the feet.

16) Wait ten minutes.

17) Have the patient roll over.

18) Soak two of the towels in very warm water. Then wring out the towels.

19) Place the towels on the patient’s back.

20) Cover the patient with the blanket, tucking it around the feet.

21) Soak another towel in very warm water, and wring it out.

22) Soak the last towel in cold water, and wring it out.

23) After about five minutes, pull the blanket back.

24) Place the hot towel on top of the two cooling towels.

25) Flip the towel stack over.

26) Remove the two cooling towels.

27) Place the cold towel on the remaining hot towel.

28) Flip the towel stack over.

29) Remove the “hot” towel.

30) Cover the patient with the blanket, tucking it around the feet.

31) Wait ten minutes.

32) Feel underneath the towel. If the patient’s skin is warm, the treatment is done.

5 things You Need to Know about Heavy Metal Poisoning

Heavy Metals

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The national spotlight on the drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan created a media uproar – the revealing expose featured in the USA Today network story on the test reports of excessive lead contamination has shocked the nation.

More than 300 of US water systems providing drinking water to schools and daycare centers have been reported to contain lead levels that exceed the Environmental Protection Agency standards.One Maine elementary school has lead of 630 ppm (42 times higher lead laboratory results than the EPA limit of 15 ppm), while a Pennsylvania preschool showed lead contamination of210 ppm.

The Big Question: How come this has been ignored? Were authorities aware but keeping it mum? What are the long term health risks and existing dangers of lead contamination? Who is to blame? Obviously, we will not answer all of these in this small article!

Heavy metal poisoning has been a problem for centuries. Metals can be found in our drinking water, our foods, our kitchens, our homes, our jobs, and in many manufacturing processes. Heavy metals in high concentrations can cause severe damage to the lungs, kidneys, liver, the endocrine organs, bones, the central nervous system, cardiovascular system, and the gastrointestinal system.

Let us take a look at some of the majorly known types of heavy metal poisoning and their causes :

Arsenic Poisoning

Arsenic is a very dangerous compound to have in your body. Chronic exposure makes skin cancer much more likely. These chronic exposures are very low levels, too. At a level of 0.17ppb, 1 person in 10,000 will get cancer. It is found in well water, foods, and some occupational exposures.

In the US, miners of zinc and copper are at risk. Food exposures are primarily rice and wines in the US. Worldwide, arsenic poisoning is caused by the use of topical creams in the treatment of some skin conditions, ingestion of herbicides, insecticides, pesticides, fungicides, or rodenticides containing arsenic which is usually found in non-organically grown vegetables or fruits may also cause arsenic poisoning. Other forms include occupational exposure in manufacturing units involved with paints, enamels,glass and metals. Arsenic is also found in contaminated water, seafood, and algae.

Cadmium Poisoning

The two major causes of cadmium poisoning are tobacco smoking and eating  foods containing cadmium (can occur in grains, legumes, and leafy vegetables, fish, and shellfish). Other factors include exposure to cadmium in electric batteries and solar panels.

Lead Poisoning

Lead was a common ingredient in paints, especially white paint. Lead was used in the stabilization of gasoline. Lead can be an ingredient in ceramic glazes. The Romans made their water pipes from lead (giving people one explanation for why Nero was the Emperor who fiddled while Rome burned)—lead poisoning made him crazy!

Lead was a base for many cosmetics, especially white cosmetics and in kohl, an ancient Middle Eastern mascara. It is still found in medicines and cosmetics in China and India. The EPA estimates that 3 million Americans are exposed to dangerous levels of lead at their jobs. Scientists keep lowering the safe blood levels of lead, because they have found no safe level of lead in the bloodstream.

They have now established a “tolerated level” of 5ppm in the blood. Lead exposure sources are lead solder in copper pipes, occupational exposure to lead in paints, smelting, mining, brass foundries, gasoline and battery manufacturing. Additional causes of lead poisoning include use of cosmetic hair dyes and eating foods that are grown in lead poisoned soil.

Mercury Poisoning

Mercury is even more toxic than lead! The most bio available form of mercury is found in seafood. The most predatory fish are the most dangerous to eat because they have eaten so many mercury-containing fish that these fish consumers now have high lead levels. This is why there are recommended limits in the amount of tuna or swordfish that should be consumed each week. Shellfish can be dangerous, too, but only if they were raised where the ocean water was contaminated. Mercury’s Thimerosal is a mercury compound that is used as preservative in vaccines—currently very controversial! Mercury is a mold-preventative additive in indoor latex paints. Breathing mercury vapors is very dangerous, too.

Contaminated water and fish is a very talked about subject when it comes to mercury poisoning. A common source is the mercury vapors from dental amalgam fillings that has been well documented.  mercury poisoning is also caused due to workplace exposure to manufacturing units for thermometers, mirrors, incandescent lights, x-ray machines, batteries and vacuum pumps.

Children are often exposed to mercury poisoning through paint, calomel, teething powder, and mercuric fungicide which are used in washing diapers, but only with the indoor latex paint exposure and dental amalgam fillings are USA and EU children exposed to mercury, with the other preparations banned in these countries long ago.

Some of the most common health conditions and symptoms that are connected with acute heavy metal poisoning include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, central nervous system dysfunction, heart problems, and anemia.

Diagnosis and Treatment

The testing of heavy metal levels in the body can be done with hair, blood, urine, feces, and nails. Blood testing is only accurate in acute poisoning. Chronic heavy metal poisoning can lead to storage of the metals in the bones and organs, so then there is little metal found in the blood.

Hair analysis is the cheapest and easiest of the heavy metal screening tests, always showing true test results with positive findings, but (as with blood tests) the stored forms of heavy metals are not found with hair analysis either. Provocative testing techniques are the only ways to accurately assess the stored tissue levels of the heavy metals. In provocative testing, a chelating agent is used initially, then urine or feces is gathered to determine how much metal was liberated from the tissues with the chelating compound. When a lot of metal is found, the assumption is that there must be a lot of stored heavy metals.

Now you and your doctor need to decide how to remove the metals! Chelation is the desired process, with chemical “claws” to grab the metal and then remove it from the body through the urine or feces. There are IV chelators, such as EDTA, DMPS, and BAL. There are oral chelators: DMSA and d-penicillamine (DPCN). Ozone administration is especially wonderful. Nutritional supplementation is useful, too, with glutathione, seleniomethionine, vitamin C, and N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) all having useful benefits.

5 Ingredients in Foods You Never Knew are Dangerous for Your Brain

Food

With processed and GMO-based foods already dominating our food supply, there are many concerns about the many ways these chemicals area damaging our brains. There are commonly found chemicals in foods that have a toxic and very negative effect on our bodies, especially the nerve centers of the brain. See Dr. Howell’s article, Be Wary of Excitotoxins in Foods to learn about the specific neurotoxins called Excitotoxins that are commonly found in processed foods today.

Here are more dangers from the commonly found in the foods we eat:

1. Gluten

Gluten is a protein molecule that is found in crops like wheat, rue, spelt, barley, and kamut. Gluten sensitivity is caused when the gluten enters the small intestine and causes inflammation and damage through an allergic-style response to the gluten. Of course people with gluten sensitivities suffer from gastrointestinal complaints. Since the primary response is inflammation of the small intestine, gluten-sensitivity sufferers will have bloating, inability to process fats (steatorrhea), abdominal cramping (colic), burning, abdominal spasms, diarrhea, spasmodic constipation, and will have nutritional deficiencies and weight loss. Among those with even a mild sensitivity to gluten, gluten causes reactions in the intestines and the brain. There is also non-coeliac gluten sensitivity, which is characterized by gastrointestinal or extra-intestinal symptoms which include IBS(irritable bowel syndrome).Celiac disease is the most severe form of gluten sensitivity and is present in about one percent of the population.

2. Sugar Substitutes and Artificial Sweeteners

Though artificial sweeteners (NutraSweet, Amino Sweet), sucralose (Splenda), or saccharin (Equal, Sweet ‘N Low) are widely used in most confectionery and beverages—even more than regular sugar—most people are unaware of their long-term effects. Often found in sodas, yogurt, chewing gum, cooking sauces, tabletop sweeteners, flavored water, cereal, and sugar free products, nearly all artificial sweeteners are toxic with long-term use.

Studies suggest that aspartame in large doses can cause neurological dysfunction such as learning difficulties. Even earlier studies on aspartame revealed that consumption of this sugar substitute more than the recommended limit of 2500 mg per day can induce neurotoxic effects on the brain and can have a negative impact on seizure disorders. Though there has been an introduction of other artificial sweeteners that are hoped to be safer, there is much medical evidence which proves the use of sugar substitutes to cause headaches, migraines, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, depression, and other problems.

3. MSG or Monosodium Glutamate

The food additive MSG is a flavor enhancer that was first found in Kombu seaweed. It has been widely used in many prepared foods because of its tremendous, quick response in improving the flavor of the food. Researchers also found the MSG served to train consumers to eat more food and to prefer the food to the other food choices that were simultaneously offered. This helped to create brand loyalty. In the US, this is most easily seen by the consumers who prefer Coke or Pepsi, frequently refusing to drink the other brand. MSG helps to create that brand loyalty. Compulsively consuming MSG almost fulfills the criteria for addictive behavior. The scientific literature is full of articles about the benefits created for consumers by the appetite increasing effects of MSG.  The behavior-altering effects of the MSG can be seen by observing food patrons eating MSG-laden foods. They can be seen with glassy eyes, slack jaws, chewing thoughtlessly. Even families eating together will go quiet during the first full “rush” of MSG. Just watch patrons eating at a fast food vendor’s or a food stall.

MSG has been linked to cancer, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’/s Disease, and many autoimmune disorders. Processed foods like “healthy” snacks, salad dressing, barbecue sauce, bouillon cubes, and most canned foods carry MSG. In blatant refusal of all evidence that has been brought forward implicating the dangers of MSG, food manufacturers still use this toxic substance in most processed food: they want to eat more and to create consumer brand loyalty with MSG. Studies done with MSG have shown that it causes the swelling and destruction of mature neuron cells in the brain. Excitotoxins like MSG have been linked to brain damage and other neurological diseases including Parkinson’s and Dementia.

4. Refined Sugar

Though sugar substitutes have been proven to be unhealthy and disastrous to the human body, sugar is a problem, too. Brain studies show that the diets that are high in starch, sugar, and bad fats reduce neuroplasticity, the ability of our brain to change when exposed to new information and skills.Sugar is also a highly addictive product which may be also linked to eating disorders and obesity problems that are worldwide problems. Diets high in sugar also trigger all of the problems that are created by insulin. Did you see Dr. Howells article about insulin yet?

5. Fluoride

Though used as a common additive to drinking water for 80 years, there has never been good research justifying this practice. Combined with that is the rising awareness of the harm it causes the brain over long-term administration, it makes it surprising that we continue to add this industrial waste product to our drinking water. Though harmless in small doses, with larger dosages fluorine shows confirmed problems. There are even studies which systematically prove how small amounts of fluoride diversely affect the processes of the human brain and are toxic to the brain. Specifically, fluoride causes irreparable damage to the developing brain of children and may also affect the nervous systems of adults. According to the Fluoride Action Network (FAN), fluoride was linked to ADHD, learning and memory impairment, fetal brain damage, and altered neurobehavioral function. Excessive fluoride exposure has also causes osteoarthritis, arthritic symptoms, lowers the density of the bone mass, and effects many other tissues, including the brain and thyroid gland.

You may not be able to entirely avoid these 5 problems, but reduce them in all the ways that you can!

The Untold Truth about Insulin and Modern Diets

Insulin and Modern Diets

It is very stylish to be concerned with the protein, fat, and carbohydrate content of our diets. This has led to a lot of articles that are confusing for us all because of the tremendous differences in their content. I hope this article simplifies the subject so that you will feel comfortable with your eating habits again.

According to scientists, primitive people ate diets that were hunted and gathered as they walked about the earth. This is known from fossils—even feces (poop) became fossilized, so we know what these people were eating: meats, fibrous vegetables (greens, asparagus,etc.), roots, and picked fruits. Scientists maintain that we have eaten this way for 100,000,000 years. Much more recent is our efforts at agriculture. Again, according to scientists, human society with organized agriculture goes back 10,000 years or so. This means that bread, rice, breakfast cereal, and other grain products are very recent additions to our diets. Beer may be the reason that primitive man even wanted to raise grains, or the desire for wine creating grape farmers.

This is important for us because of the new biochemical challenges that our bodies are being tested with.

Let’s talk about insulin. If you look in any medical textbook, there will be a section dealing with insulin and the “normal” control of blood sugar. When the blood glucose levels get too high, our bodies secrete insulin to prevent body damage from the high glucose levels by shunting the extra glucose to the fat cells. This is a good thing, but it was very uncommon in the lives of primitive people.How often did they consume large amounts of carbohydrates? Perhaps a special festival where beer or wine was consumed? Summertime when there were large amounts of ripe fruits? In our society, it is common for insulin to be secreted 4 to 6 times daily with various meals and snacks.

So what? The problem with all of this insulin secretion is that the insulin is a pro-inflammatory hormone. That’s right, secretion of insulin leads to inflammation throughout the body. So your joint pains, your headaches, your bruises, your strains—all of your pains are made worse through the secretion of insulin. This is terrible, isn’t it? Our very way of lifestyle and diet leads to increased inflammation!

This is the problem with selecting an untested lifestyle that only dates back 10,000 years: we haven’t adapted to this huge change.

If we were eating the hunter-and-gatherers’ diet, our blood sugar would rarely go high enough to require insulin secretion. For millions of years, then, we rarely secreted insulin. We ate fats, proteins, some nuts and berries, and fibrous vegetables. No insulin required.

Now we eat diets requiring insulin every meal! We have developed new diseases unknown to primitive man: diabetes, heart disease, cancer, etc. Of course, we don’t worry about starvation, sabre-tooth tigers mauling us, or being eaten by a pack of wolves, but,really we have made a lot of problems for ourselves through this10,000-year-old experiment.

When we eat too many carbohydrates, our white blood cells are less active for 4 hours—each time the blood sugar goes high. No more orange juice for colds and flus!

Remember, when we drink alcohol, juice, sugar beverages, or eat cakes, pies, pastries, bread, cookies, or breakfast cereals, then we secrete insulin.

If we have cancer cells, they have 16 times as many insulin receptors as our fat cells, so when they are present, they eat almost all of the glucose released from these dangerous foods. And our white blood cells don’t fight for a while, either.

If we don’t have cancer, then the extra glucose is turned into fat. Then, once we go without food for a while, once the glucose has run out, then our livers make glucose—at first from stored starch, and then from fat. But the metabolic shifting mechanism of the liver can be impeded through many possible ways. With this problem, the person becomes hypoglycemic and the adrenals, liver, and thyroid can become imbalanced as well.

All of these sugars also challenges our hearts—we develop cardiovascular disease. As our blood vessels get worse and worse, we develop circulatory problems (most importantly) in our hearts and brains. This leads to heart disease, circulatory problems, senility and other brain conditions, etc.

When we secrete a lot of insulin through bad lifestyle, we exhaust our insulin manufacturing plant (the pancreas) and develop Type 2 diabetes. This also promotes increased cardiovascular problems.

Are you getting the picture? Our food experiment in organized agriculture has led to most of the common forms of death in our times.

This is why I like the high protein, high fat, low carbohydrate diets that are touted with different names. Of course, we should want the grass-fed and organic animal products, moderate intake of vegetable fats, and general avoidance of simple carbohydrates. That’s enough for now. The rest will become topics for future articles.

 

Workstation Safety : Is Your Workstation Safe?

Workstation Safety

After more than thirty-four years of naturopathic medical practice, the last seventeen with an emphasis on physical medicine, I know that statistics show that the most dangerous jobs are in the fishing and construction industries. But for most people, the workstation is the most dangerous places that they can spend their time. Your desk is a dangerous place if it isn’t customized to fit your body. Do you know somebody who has been crippled with carpal tunnel syndrome? Or do you know an office worker with chronic neck or low back problems? These are problems that are caused, or at least aggravated by a poorly arranged workstation. If you spend more than two hours a day at a desk or on your computer, then you need to pay attention to the ergonomics of your desk.

SOME HISTORY ABOUT WORKSTATION SAFETY:

The US government began researching this situation in the 1980s, and laws regarding the safety of the workplace have mandated that office desks (workstations) must be customized to fit the worker in order for the desk to be a safe place.

I first began seeing my patients with repetitive usage injuries from improperly set up workstations in the 1980s. The rash of carpal tunnel surgeries that you been in vogue over the past six or eight years are created, in part, from the bad workstations that the baby boomers had during the 1980s and 1990s. Since US law was already in place defining proper workplaces, the employers were required to furnish safe work environments. So they were responsible for these injuries. Workmen’s compensation attorneys picked up on this, which led to some sizable settlements and to placing many people on permanent disability pensions, all from bad workstation environments.

ARE YOU IN DANGER, TOO?

You should be concerned about this, if you are an office worker and have chronic pains in your eyes, head, neck, arms, low back, or buttocks. Your workplace is suspect if your head or neck bothers you or if you have eyestrain after you sit at your computer for a while, or if your arms feel fatigued or heavy after you work for a while or if your low back and/or pelvis feel strained or achy after working at your desk. If you have headache, neck, or back problems—whether or not you work at a desk—then redesign your workstation to prevent further damage and get your physical structure fixed (chiropractic or massage will not be enough).

What can you do? First, consider that there is a world out there that doesn’t require computers or desks to operate. So go outside and be active! If you can afford it, get work that doesn’t require you to spend a majority of your day harnessed to a workstation. Second, if you must spend so much time at a workstation, work with your employer to modify your workplace to fit your body. Third, take hourly breaks from your desk, and be physically active for three to five minutes.

REDESIGNING YOUR WORKPLACE:

First, you should get a chair that feels comfortable to your buttocks and low back. This chair must also position you to sit with your feet flat on the floor with your knees at a 90 degree angle. So when you sit your thighs are parallel with the ground. This will prevent knee, foot, or ankle problems from being created by your workstation.

Next, find a desk that has its working surface or keyboard tray positioned so that your upper arms hang straight down and your lower arms reach straight out to the keyboard tray. In these more enlightened times, many desks will have keyboard trays at the proper heights for most office chairs. It is important that you try to keep your hands parallel with the keyboard as your type, or that you place keyboard (wrist) pads in front of your keyboard and use them to minimize repetitive strain injuries of the wrists. You must also place your mouse close to the keyboard so that you are not reaching out, just to use your mouse.

Third, (and this will be the hardest) position your monitor at a height so that you are looking straight across from your eyes to the monitor. Tilting your head down to see your monitor is really hard on your neck. If you are using a notebook computer, then you should not use it more than an hour or two daily. Instead, use an additional monitor placed at the proper height or use a separate keyboard with the notebook placed at a height that requires no head tilt to see the monitor, either of these methods will permit a proper workstation setup.

ANTICIPATING FUTURE MODIFICATIONS OF SAFE WORKPLACE RULES:

Currently there are no requirements in the workplace rules for telephone usage and safety, but it is obvious that a headset is essential if you spend much of your workplace time on the telephone. There are patients of mine who spend hours each day with wireless headsets and they are reporting weird health problems; I think that it is safest to use the wired headsets. Similarly, I think that it is best to have your workplace using a wired LAN network instead of a wireless network. My most sensitive patients are reporting health problems around wireless networks, and I suspect the rest of us will be noting these subtle changes as the years pass.

Lighting is another big issue. You have probably seen full spectrum and non-glare lighting touted for their “health benefits”. They really help, especially with reducing eyestrain and eye fatigue. It is already becoming common for workplaces to utilize improved lighting because the employees are more productive. For the employees with stupid employers, they will have to wait until newer safety standards mandate these changes. In the interim, consider getting a small full spectrum, non-glare light and placing it near your workstation, where it seems to most reduce your eyestrain.

So, even if you don’t like your job, you can use these tips to make your workplace a place that you like!

B-VITAMINS: How much is not too much?

B-Vitamins : How much is not too much?

Known as Vitamin B complex, there are eight B vitamins — B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, B12 — which play an important role in keeping our bodies well balanced and running like well-oiled machines. These essential nutrients not only help convert our food into fuel, but also allow us to stay energized throughout the day. Where there are chances where an average person may not be getting as much B-Vitamins are their body needs, supplements to the same are often advised.

People have often asked me,”How much of the B-vitamins should I take?”

I don’t think that you should take too high a dosage of B-vitamins. Many people are actually doing that in complete naivety of the after effects it can have on the human body. When scientists first discovered B-vitamins, the essential dosages that would prevent deficiency symptoms were in the range of two to five milligrams. B-vitamins are not toxic until very large dosages are used. Following the concept that more is better, people began experimenting with larger and larger dosages. There are some people who require very large doses of B-vitamins because of their unique biochemistry. These people got much better on large amounts of B-vitamins.

In my family practice, I often treated people for fatigue. Many of these people were already taking large dosages of B-vitamins, typically the common “B-100s” that are sold in many health food departments of grocery stores. At first, high potency B-vitamins really help people feel better. However, by the time these patients came to me, the vitamins were no longer helping.

The B-vitamins can be a drug. When the dosage of a vitamin is many times the nutritional dosage, it becomes a drug. The drug effect of B-vitamins is stimulation. When a person is tired, the initial reaction when taking B-vitamins is to feel more energetic. Continued usage does not treat the cause of the fatigue (most of the time), so after a few months, the person feels tired again. In a way, the B-vitamins work on a fatigued person like a whip works on a horse. The first few times a whip is used, the horse runs a little faster. But if the whip is used too much, the tired horse cannot run any faster. Most cases of fatigue are not caused by a deficiency of B-vitamins.

I find that most people need B-vitamins in the range of 10 to 25 milligrams. When there are special situations where a specific type of one of the B-vitamins is required in a larger dosage, only that particular vitamin is used, not all the other B-vitamins as well!

Vitamin B-6 is needed in larger doses to prevent nausea and stretch marks during pregnancy. Vitamin B-6 also can help to get rid of the unwanted fluid retention associated with PMS and with high blood pressure. Some people get relief from anxiety taking vitamin B-1 in doses of one hundred milligrams. An effective treatment of chronically cold hands involves administration of two thousand milligrams of vitamin B-5 daily.

Do you get the point?

You take specific kinds of B-vitamins to treat specific biochemical conditions. They are not to beused like a shotgun.

Science Says You Need to Be Wary of Excitotoxins in Foods: Here’s Why

Be wary of Excitotoxins in foods

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One of the most serious and largely unknown threats to our health today is the presence of excitotoxins in most packaged foods. This is something that negatively affects every person who lives and eats in “civilized” countries, even those of us who eat a so-called healthful diet. Therefore, it is imperative that we take action to protect ourselves and those around us. The first step is to boost awareness of this critical issue.

In his book, Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills (Health Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1997), Russell L. Blaylock, M.D., provides hundreds of pages of research (with 493 citations, mostly from medical journals) indicating the great danger these ingredients pose and where they are present in our food supply.

Excitotoxins stimulate neurons to death, causing varying degrees of brain damage. Hypothalamus cells can be destroyed after a single dose. Children are especially vulnerable as excitotoxins alter brain development, making them more susceptible to learning and emotional problems as well as to violent behavior.

The most famous excitotoxin is MSG. Many people know that MSG can cause headaches, nausea and a general sense of ill ease. This is sometimes called the Chinese Restaurant Syndrome. MSG was discovered in Japan (derived from kombu, a seaweed) and has been widely used by American food manufacturers since World War II.

The amount of MSG added to foods has doubled every decade since the 1940’s, reaching over 250,000 metric tons by the early 1970’s. MSG was voluntarily removed from baby foods in 1969 after evidence of brain damage (children were found to be most vulnerable) was presented to Congress. But it continues in adult foods. However, since so many people know of MSG’s harmfulness, manufacturers have turned increasingly to other excitotoxins.

Excitotoxins have been linked through rigorous scientific studies to learning, behavioral and emotional problems, hormonal imbalances, brain defects, tumors and lesions. These chemicals contribute to or aggravate Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Lou Gehrig’s disease, Strokes, Migraines, Seizures, Hypertension, Diabetes, Meningitis, Encephalitis and more. Excitotoxins typically cause a slow destruction of brain cells that are specifically sensitive to them, such as neurons that normally use small amounts of glutamate for a transmitter. Excitotoxins literally stimulate these neurons to death.

Excitotoxins are the food industry’s way of disguising and substituting for MSG. Unfortunately, many of these chemicals—like aspartame (NutraSweet), cysteine and hydrolyzed vegetable (or plant) protein—are even more dangerous than MSG. Hydrolyzed vegetable protein, for instance, contains three known excitotoxins plus MSG. It is a mixture made from junk vegetables unfit for sale that are boiled in a vat of acid and then neutralized with caustic soda. The resulting sludge, which is very high in MSG, is scraped off and powdered. It is contained in a number of spice blends.

Why do food manufacturers use such chemicals? Because they taste good and this encourage consumers to keep buying their products. People can even become addicted to a certain kind of excitotoxin, insuring extreme brand loyalty. This occurs often with soft drinks, almost all of which contain excitotoxins. As a consumer, it is important to read labels carefully to avoid such brain damaging chemicals, but it would be even better if manufacturers would remove these ingredients from their products and thus from our food supply.

What food additives contain these chemicals? In his appendix, Dr. Blaylock lists many of them. Those that always contain excitotoxins include aspartate, L-cysteine, MSG (including glutamate or glutamic acid), hydrolyzed (vegetable or plant) protein, plant protein extract, sodium caseinate, calcium caseinate, yeast extract, textured protein, autolyzed yeast, hydrolyzed oat flour and kombu.

Additives that frequently contain excitotoxins include malt extract, malt flavoring, bouillon, broth, stock, flavoring, natural flavoring, natural beef or chicken flavoring, seasoning and spices.

Additives that sometimes contain excitotoxins include carrageenan, enzymes, soy protein concentrate, soy protein isolate and whey protein concentrate. Also, protease enzymes of various sources can release excitotoxin amino acids from food proteins.

As I look at labels in even health food stores, the excitotoxin additives I find most frequently are natural flavors, spices, spice extract, (autolyzed) yeast extract, (natural) enzymes, and carrageenan. The majority of prepared foods both in health food and conventional grocery stores seem to contain one or more of these ingredients as flavor enhancers.

You owe it to the wonderful human body you’ve been given and to your health in general to eat foods that are healthful and nourishing to your body, mind, and emotions. Because excitotoxins can cause damage on all three of these levels, you will want to read labels carefully and to avoid them.

In general, the best foods to eat are organic (or biodynamic), fresh, and locally grown. Organic because not only do you avoid harmful chemicals this way, but you also get foods much higher in nutritional (especially mineral) content. Organic soil is regularly enriched instead of depleted and poisoned by mono-crops with chemical (trace mineral poor) fertilizers. Fresh foods are best because they still have the maximal life force present (nurturing you at a much higher level). Locally grown in important because not only do you support the farmers in your area (many of whom may be struggling to survive against big business), but you also balance your body for the environment you live in. Locally grown food has been shown to put people more in harmony with their environment, to help them to ground more, and to improve health in general.

So feast on the abundance of healthful meat, vegetables, fruit, nuts, and grains that nature provides, and your body will thank you. Leave most packaged foods and the excitotoxins in them alone, and you will be healthier, happier, and live a longer life.

Are You Missing On Sleep ? 4 Natural Ways To Overcome Sleeping Problems

sleep_with NCR

Amidst the challenges of the 21st century lifestyle, the pressures and reactions on the mind-body-soul model of a human being can be pretty intense. Studies have revealed that Over half of Americans adults regularly do not get enough sleep. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC ) estimates that 30 percent of the U.S. workforce averages less than six hours of sleep per night, with sleep deprivation levels even higher for night shift, transportation and healthcare sectors. Even when you may want to sleep, stress from work, relationships, health and other sources can make it physically and psychologically harder to relax, and negative rumination can increase risks of insomnia.

Some strategies that have been consistently used to relieve sleep problems involve:

Guided relaxation – Listening to calm and soothing music calms the mind and relaxes the breathing movements. While surgery and prescription drugs can be the best course of treatment for certain diagnoses, there is increasing evidence demonstrating that conservative treatments like physical therapy can be equally effective (and cheaper) for many conditions.

Exercise – Regular cardio exercises and paying attention to a well rounded diet is associated with longer, higher quality sleep. Yoga specially have been proven to invigorate the skeletomuscular systems well enough with long term benefits for sleeping problems, that may arise from body stress.

Meditation – Meditation is a longer-term strategy that can help reduce stress and make it easier to cope. With the practice of meditation you can have a reliable way to move away from repetitive, automatic, habitual thinking into a deeper state of attentiveness, awareness and relaxation. When you can fully and deeply relax and let go, your stress diminishes, and you have the potential to begin the process of healing from the damage associated with chronic levels of stress

NeuroCranialRestructuring – Everyone knows that the brain and the nervous system control most processes of the entire body, but hardly anyone realizes the therapeutic significance of the statement: “80% of our nervous system is inside the skull”. The primary precept of Dr. Dean Howell’s NCR is to optimize nervous system and musculoskeletal functions by simplifying structure and improving structural stability.After undergoing NCR treatment, people feel better ,sleep and rest better and their brains function better too. With NCR a person feels more relaxed, happy and self-confident.