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Coffee: Medicine for the Body and Soul

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Reproduced from original article:
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Posted on: Saturday, July 23rd 2016
Written By: Sayer Ji, Founder
This article is copyrighted by GreenMedInfo LLC, 2019


Could coffee do more than just stimulate alertness and stress out the adrenals? What if there was more going on to this ritualistic beverage consumed by billions around the world than just caffeine addiction? What if it was medicine for both the body and soul? 

That coffee possesses ‘drug-like’ properties, we know quite well. Some of us, in fact, revel in its addictive properties, as it comes with a certain — albeit a tad bit pathological — industriousness. After all, is there anyone more disciplined/obsessed than a coffee drinker — at least, that is, when it comes to acquiring and drinking coffee? You can set your clocks with exactitude to the performance of their daily coffee-associated machinations, to the point where some coffee makers already have built in clocks, so as not to delay or miss any opportunity for its owner to imbibe. The type of sober religiosity required to turn drinking a beverage into a ritual is known only by a few Zen tea drinkers and quite possibly billions of habitual coffee drinkers.

“It is inhumane, in my opinion, to force people who have a genuine medical need for coffee to wait in line behind people who apparently view it as some kind of recreational activity.” ~ David Barry

Let us also not forget that one of the first documented uses of coffee over 500 years ago was in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen where coffee was known as qahhwat al-bun, or, the ‘wine of the bean,’ the phrase which provided the etymological origin of the word coffee. Once lauded as a “miracle drug” and used as a sacrament in late-night rituals to invoke the sensation of God within revelers, still today, coffee drinkers are known to cast themselves into bouts of coffee-drinking induced reverie and enthusiasm (literally: en “in” + theos “god” or “god-filled”) by drinking this strangely intoxicating, and yet somehow still sobering concoction.

It is interesting that even addictions can be viewed as a form of ritual — albeit degenerated ones performed semi- or subconsciously. But that cup of Joe gets many of us up in the morning to perform our secular duties, which says a lot considering what many of us are forced or coerced to do for a living.

While many attribute coffee’s vise-like hold on their physiology to its caffeine content, there is much more going on than simply a fixation on a ‘stimulant.’ It has been known for over a quarter of a century that coffee contains a compound known as cafestrol with significant opiate-like properties and which is found within both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee forms. The ‘narcotic’ properties of coffee, therefore, are no doubt due to a complex interplay between a wide range of compounds — not just a stimulant, but an opioid agonist as well.

Coffee is also a ‘brain-booster’ and contains a compound called trigonelline which in vitro research both stimulates the release of dopamine (not unlike cocaine), and stimulates neurite outgrowth, which involves the extension of dendrites and axons in neurons and which may compensate and rescue damaged neuronal networks in the aging brain.

One of history’s greatest nutrition philosophers, Rudolf Hauschka, described coffee’s action on our body-mind as follows:

“Coffee makes us more aware of our bodily structure. And since this structure is so wise and logical, our thoughts become logical in their awareness of it. Coffee thus helps thinking to find a firm foundation. The connection between bodily being and thinking, keeps calling itself to our attention. Coffee has the same effect on digestion that thought has on our upper man, i.e., a properly ordered metabolism goes hand in hand with orderly thinking. Both are founded on a properly ordered physical structure.” ~ Rudolf Hauschka, Nutrition: A Holistic Approach

Coffee is also one of the only sources of “bitters” remaining in the sweet-fixated Western diet, which sadly comes with a certificate of guarantee that the bearer will likely develop type 2 diabetes, heart disease or a receive a cancer diagnosis at some point in their life. Could the extreme bitterness of coffee be the reason why it has been repeatedly shown to reduce type 2 diabetes risk, as it is one of the only ways we can balance out the highly inappropriate excesses of carbohydrate in our modern dietary configuration?

We don’t normally think of grains as sweet, but they are on the glycemic index. Puffed rice, for instance, can make the blood sweeter than white sugar which is why ‘complex’ carbs are known as “crouching diabetes, hidden sugar.” Coffee contains a wide range of blood-glucose and insulin sensitizing compounds, making it an ideal complement to a carbohydrate-deranged diet.

Coffee also awakens and stimulates the Qi, as it is known in the Chinese medical tradition. This was discussed in an article entitled “Similarity between the effects of coffee and qi stimulating events“. While raising Qi through exercise and energy work is the ideal situation, coffee provides a short-cut which is the modus operandi in the modern world: instant gratification in exchange for (energy) indebtedness.

When used responsibly,* however, coffee may be a great boon to health, and has even been studied to provide an alternative to commonly prescribed drugs with serious side effects like prednisolone. There are, in fact, over 100 potential health applications of coffee as documented on our coffee research database node. We have also identified 33 distinct ‘pharmacological actions’ coffee may activate to produce positive health results. Just make sure its organic and prepared with clean, toxicant-free water.

*Responsibly could be defined as using it as a medicine, occasionally, versus every day, several times a day. Good luck with that!

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Hate Beets? Learn How to Gain Better Cognitive, Cardiovascular and Athletic Performance

© GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC.
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Reproduced from original article:
https://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/hate-beets-learn-how-gain-better-cognitive-cardiovascular-and-athletic-performanc
Posted on: Tuesday, July 6th 2021 at 9:30 am
Written By: Erin Chamerlik, MS, MT(ASCP)
This article is copyrighted by GreenMedInfo LLC, 2021


Beets are a healthy vegetable but how often do they appear on your plate? Let’s talk about what you are missing if you are not eating organic beets either fresh or prepared in a way to preserve the nutrients (not canned). In this article are solutions for those following a low-carb and ketogenic diet as well

Beets leave health clues. They bleed!

If this clue leads you to believe that beets might be good for the cardiovascular system–you are right! If you start to ponder all the ways that healthy blood flow benefits the body, you might wonder if it is helpful for athletic performance, cognitive function and libido. Again, you are right!

Beetroot is rich in vitamins, minerals, anthocyanin, betacyanin, phenolic compounds, flavonoids, vitamin C, and other biologically active components. Beets are unique because they contain powerful betalains. These compounds have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, detoxification and anti-cancer properties. (1)

Betalains occur in two forms i.e. betacyanin (red-violet pigment) and betaxanthin (yellow-orange pigment). (2)

Betacyanins (a form of betalains in beets) are the reg pigments in beets and betanin (Beetroot Red) is the most common betacyanin. Betanin is an antioxidant and a scavenger of reactive oxygen species. It exhibits gene-regulatory activity. Betanin plays a role in detoxification and may induce phase II enzymes. Betanin has been shown to possibly prevent LDL oxidation and DNA damage. (3) (4)

The bioavailability of betalains from beetroot is low but may be enhanced by antioxidant metals such as selenium, which stabilizes betalains. (4)

Health Benefits of Betalains (5)

  • Antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-protozoal activity.
  • Anticancer properties.
  • Improves ratio of HDL cholesterol to LDL cholesterol and lowers the level of oxidized LDL.
  • Lowers blood glucose and body weight.
  • Liver protective. Induces detoxification phase II enzyme.
  • Improves mitochondrial function.
  • Lowers blood pressure.
  • Fights inflammation.

In addition to betalains in beetroot, beets are also recognized as a powerful health-promoting food due to presence of carotenoids (natural pigments with antioxidant properties) and nitrate (NO3), which can enhance exercise performance by increasing nitric oxide production. (2) (6)

Nitrates in Beets

We have seen recommendations to limit nitrate and nitrite consumption but there is strong evidence linking the consumption of nitrate- and nitrite-containing plant foods to beneficial health effects. (7)

The top seven foods with very high levels of plant-based nitrates are celery, cress, chervil, lettuce, red beetroot, spinach, and rocket (rucola). (8)

Beets Enhance Efficiency of Mitochondria — Benefits for athletic performance, stamina and energy

Studies have demonstrated that beetroot juice can enhance exercise performance. Beets are high in dietary nitrate shown to increase the production of nitric oxide. Mitochondria, the energy producers in cells, work more efficiently and physical performance increases. (9)(10)(11)(12)

Researchers stated, “We conclude that dietary nitrate has profound effects on basal mitochondrial function. These findings may have implications for exercise physiology- and lifestyle-related disorders that involve dysfunctional mitochondria.” (12)

Increasing nitrate intake by consuming beets improves endurance exercise performance. Consumption of nitrate-rich, whole beetroot improves running performance in healthy adults. (13)

A study of twelve male cyclists showed, “Six days of nitrate supplementation (from beetroot juice) reduced pulmonary oxygen uptake (VO₂) during submaximal exercise and improved time-trial performance in trained cyclists.” (14)

Dietary nitrate supplementation from beetroot juice improves performance during intense intermittent exercise. (15)

Aging is associated with an impaired ability of the vascular endothelium to increase plasma nitrite and nitric oxide (NO) during exercise. (16) Adding dietary nitrate in the form of beets gives the body a ready source of nitrates to produce nitric oxide which results in a lower oxygen demand during exercise. A 2007 study concluded that energy production becomes more efficient. (17)

Beetroot Supplementation Provides Cardiovascular Health Benefits

Beetroot juice ingestion substantially lowered blood pressure (BP) by up to 3 – 10 mm Hg over a period of a few hours in healthy volunteers. Vasoprotective and antiplatelet aggregation properties were attributed to the conversion of nitrate in beetroot to nitrite which is reduced to nitric oxide. (18) (19) (20) (21)

How to Consume Beets for Health Benefits

Once one understands the many health benefits of consuming beets, we need to consider what form is best. When purchasing beets, look for organic beets. Beets grow underground and their thin skin means they easily absorb chemicals and heavy metals.

  • Avoid long cooking times to keep the betalains from being damaged.
  • Cut medium beets into quarters. No need to remove the skin before steaming. Steam for 15 minutes. Rub the skin off with a paper towel.
  • Grate raw beets for salads or use to garnish soups.

Beet Shots, Juices, Powders and Supplements

When purchasing beet products, consider the country of origin and the extent of processing. Many “budget beets” are grown in Asia and then processed somewhere else into beet shots, beet juice and beet powders. Choose products using organic beets with minimal processing. Canned beets and boiled beets will be deficient in desired nutrients.

For beet shots and juices, the price tag increases with packaging, processing and beet quality. You may pay $3.00 to $4.00 per serving for these products.

As with any supplement, consider the “other ingredients” added to the beetroot. Guar gum, citric acid, natural flavor, silica, maltodextrin, rice powder, magnesium stearate, and cheap juices for filler and flavor are often added.

A good alternative is a high quality beet powder prepared from organic beets. These powders can be mixed into water or smoothies and some come in capsules.

home freeze dryer will give you the ability to make your own beetroot powder and you control the quality of the beets. I have been using this method to prepare beet powder and have been adding the beet powder to daily smoothies.

Are Beets and Beet Juice High in Carbs?

Beets are high in carbohydrates. One cup of cooked beets has about 17 grams of carbohydrate causing many to think that beets are off the table for them. If you follow a low carb or ketogenic diet, you can enjoy all the benefits of beet nutrients without consuming too many carbs from beets if you choose to use beetroot powder.

Beetroot Research

Beets are nutrient dense root vegetables offering a unique source of phytonutrients that have been shown to provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, detoxification and anti-cancer properties.

The research on the health benefits of beetroot is growing. The National Library of Medicine lists nearly 700 studies, 22% of the studies were published within the last year. Beetroot is a remarkable vegetable that can be enjoyed by everyone desiring to boost health and performance to new levels.


References

1. Molecules 2020, 25(13), 2999; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25132999

2. Food Chemistry, 2019 Volume 272, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2018.08.022

3. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2015 Jan;59(1):36-47. DOI: 10.1002/mnfr.201400484. Epub 2014

4. Molecules. 2021 May; 26(9): 2520. Published online 2021 Apr 26. doi: 10.3390/molecules26092520

5. Molecules 2021, 26(9), 2520; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26092520

6. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2019 Jul 1;29(4):345-349

7. J Clin Nutr. 2009 Jul;90(1):1-10. DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.2008.27131.Epub 2009 May 13

8. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 90, Issue 1, July 2009, Pages 1-10, https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.2008.27131

9. MC Sports Sci Med Rehabil. 2021 Jun 7;13(1):65. doi: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13102-021-00292-2

10. Annual Review of Nutrition,Vol. 38:303-328 (August 2018) https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-nutr-082117-051622

11. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2019 Jul 1;29(4):345-349. DOI: 10.1123/ijsnem.2018-0223

12. Cell Metab. 2011 Feb 2;13(2):149-59. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2011.01.004

13. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2012 Apr;112(4):548-52. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2011.12.002

14. Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2012 Feb;22(1):64-71. doi: 10.1123/ijsnem.22.1.64.

15. Appl Physiol. 2013 Jul;113(7):1673-84. doi: 10.1007/s00421-013-2589-8. Epub 2013 Feb 1.

16. Basic Res Cardiol. 2008 May;103(3):291-7. DOI: 10.1007/s00395-008-0714-3. Epub 2008 Mar 17.

17. Acta Physiol (Oxf). 2007 Sep;191(1):59-66. DOI: 10.1111/j.1748-1716.2007.01713.x. Epub 2007 Jul 17.

18. Hypertension. 2008; 51:784-790, doi:10.1161/HypertensionAHA.107.103523

19. J Nutr. 2013 Jun;143(6):818-26. doi: 10.3945/jn.112.170233. Epub 2013 Apr 17.

20. Res Rev. 2013 Dec;26(2):210-22. doi: 10.1017/S0954422413000188. Epub 2013 Oct 18.

21. Nutr J. 2012 Dec 11;11:106. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-11-106

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Gluten-free diet offers INCREDIBLE benefits to celiac sufferers, way beyond intestinal support

Reproduced from original article:
www.naturalhealth365.com/gluten-free-diet-3882.html

by:  | June 27, 2021

gluten-free-diet(NaturalHealth365) Are you having trouble with concentration?  Does your brain feel clouded and confused?  Or, maybe, you just feel like you’re losing your mental clarity and creativity.  This frustrating collection of symptoms – medically known as cognitive impairment and informally known as “brain fog” – is unfortunately very familiar to many individuals with celiac disease, an autoimmune digestive disorder that affects roughly 3 million Americans.

Research published in the July 2014 issue of Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics shows that adhering to a strict gluten-free diet causes improvements in cognitive function, sharpening memory, and increasing concentration and comprehension – improvements directly correlated with the extent of the intestinal healing.

Why is this study so significant?

Researchers had suspected that treating celiac disease with a strict gluten-free diet would relieve intestinal symptoms and other related problems.  However, this concept had not been clinically tested until now.

It is interesting to note that not only did improvement occur, but it seemed precisely linked with the amount of healing that had taken place in the small intestine.

Gluten-free diet improves cognitive function. Here is how…

In the year-long pilot study, which involved volunteers with newly diagnosed celiac disease, participants were given a battery of cognition tests before the study began, then re-tested at the 12th week and again at the 52nd week.

The tests were designed to assess each participants’ attention span, information processing ability, memory, visuospatial ability, and motor function.  The volunteers worked with sequences of letters and numbers – which tests processing speed and mental flexibility – generated random words – a test of verbal fluency that measures frontal lobe functioning – and memorized lists of words – a test that measures short-term memory and immediate recall.

Did any other testing take place?

Yes.  At weeks 12 and 52, small bowel biopsies were also performed compared to baseline biopsies performed at the beginning of the study.  Researchers also used Marsh scores, which measure damage to the intestinal mucosa and levels of tissue transglutaminase antibody concentrations.

Study reveals amazing results from a gluten-free diet

The gluten-free diet caused significant improvement, with a full quarter of the patients achieving mucosal remission by the study’s end; others experienced partial but substantial improvements.  The participants achieved substantial cognitive improvements over baseline and directly related to the level of mucosal healing.

Particularly dramatic was the improvement in quality of attention, verbal fluency, and motor function.

Senior study author Dr. Greg Yelland remarked that the work showcases the importance of a gluten-free diet for those with celiac disease – and that the diet relieves the physical impact of the disease and the intellectual impairments.  On the other hand, untreated celiac disease causes suboptimal levels of cognition that can interfere with the patient’s concentration and memory, thereby affecting their ability to perform everyday tasks.

Celiac disease can cause serious physical and cognitive issues

The University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center estimates that of the 3 million Americans currently affected by celiac disease, a shocking 97 percent are undiagnosed.  A lack of digestive symptoms causes many to be “in the dark” about the condition, which is caused when a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley causes the immune system to attack the small intestine, damaging its lining and the hair-like projections, or villi.

This damage results in impaired absorption of nutrients, leading to osteoporosis and vitamin deficiencies.  In severe cases, patients can suffer amnesia and personality changes; milder cases result in “brain fog.”

While classic signs of celiac disease are diarrhea and weight loss, many people have no digestive symptoms.

Earlier clinical research has shown cognitive impairments were present in many celiac disease patients

This study was not the first to show that cognitive impairments can occur with celiac disease.  In a 2001 study published in Brain, researchers discovered that celiac disease patients suffered cognitive impairments affecting immediate recall, verbal fluency, and executive function.

A 2008 study published in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology showed that elderly patients with celiac disease had cognitive impairments so severe that some had been wrongly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.  When the patients were treated with a gluten-free diet, symptoms subsided.

Going gluten-free can be a challenge, but there’s help

With more than 2,000 gluten-free food items now available in the U.S. – and many commonly found in conventional supermarkets – gluten-free products are big business.  Since 2006, The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act has dictated that all gluten products must be clearly listed on food labels.  Although this makes it easier to go gluten-free, you should naturally first seek diagnosis and treatment with a knowledgeable doctor experienced with celiac disease.

The Mayo Clinic advises that wheat, rye, and barley are not the only foods celiac patients should avoid: bulgur, durum, farina, graham flour, and semolina are also off-limits.

Celiac disease can be a debilitating condition when untreated; however, a gluten-free diet can provide excellent results, improving not only intestinal health but also the counter-productive, frustrating mental condition so colorfully known as “brain fog.”

Sources for this article include:

ScienceDaily.com
Wiley.com
MayoClinic.org

 

SHOCKING revelation: Who is really in control of what you eat and how to take back control?

Reproduced from original article:
www.naturalhealth365.com/who-is-in-control-of-what-you-eat-3872.html

by:  | June 18, 2021

who-is-in-control-of-what-you-eat(NaturalHealth365) America’s food injustice has deep roots.  Dig beneath the surface of a chicken nugget, chocolate bar, tuna sandwich, or apple pie, and chances are you’ll find exploitation, poverty, corrupt profit, and a conspiracy to fix prices.  Generally speaking, the nation’s food system is controlled too much by Big Food monopolies … and this concentration of power and money decides what (and how) food is produced, where and by whom, and who gets to eat it.

For example, according to recent research published in the European Review of Agricultural Economics, the consolidation of food producers correlate with higher food prices.  How?  It’s actually quite simple: in a strategic effort to fleece consumers, these short list of companies simply match each other’s price increases rather than competing with them.  And that’s just the appetizer to the main course, so to speak.

At each stage of the food chain, only a handful of players dominate, not just in primary agriculture but in food manufacturing and retailing.  According to Oxfam, a global organization working to end the injustice of poverty, these dominant players “extract much of the value along the chain, while costs and risks cascade down on to the weakest participants, generally the farmers and laborers at the bottom.”

In truth, this is just the beginning of how big food producers threaten our health.  Keep reading, for the (truly) “shocking” revelation – that many corporate food producers don’t want you to ever know.

When did our food system go so terribly wrong?  Care to answer that … Big Food?

According to the United Nation’s food price index, global food prices rose for the 12th month in a row, with the sharpest monthly rise in over a decade occurring from April to May, with food prices spiking 4.8%

This is bad news for the 35 million Americans the U.S. Department of Agricultural has deemed “food insecure,” not to mention a significant blow to low-income countries around the world.

While the sharp rise of global food prices has been attributed to a variety of causes – from drought in Brazil’s sugar-growing regions to slowed vegetable oil production in Southeast Asia – the corporate consolidation of food production, processing, and distribution and the monopolistic practices exhibited by these corporations is the main reason.  Simply put, less competition equals higher prices.

Mega-mergers and acquisitions have made food retailer Wal-Mart, food processor Nestle, and seed/chemical firm Bayer the feudal lords of the American food system, while the ABCD group of multinationals (ADM, Bunge, Cargill, and (Louis) Dreyfus) dominate global trade.

How to take back control of our food

So, what’s the (truly) “shocking” revelation about our food supply?  Well, I truly believe – as we reach critical mass – that we (the people) have the power to change this for better … very fast!  The power lies in our purchasing power.  The best way to take control back from the Big Food cartels is to STOP buying into their horrible system that produces terrible food for our health. (Watch how fast they change … if enough people can appreciate what we’re saying here.)

Let’s just say the obvious: fast food companies make a multi-million dollar effort to deceive the public on a daily basis … and poison us with their terrible food ingredients.  “Finger lickin good?” (KFC)  “Happy Meal?” (McDonald’s) “Together Tastes Better?” (Coca-Cola)  Are you kidding me?!

It’s time to get involved and take back our food supply.  Research indicates that over the past 50 years, communities around the U.S. have established more than 1,900 urban farms.  In addition, community-owned food co-ops are on the rise.  And, of course, the growing popularity of locally-run, farmers markets are greatly improving the quality of the food we have access to.  Generally speaking, decentralizing our food system provides a much more secure delivery system and it’s a great way to make new friends by locally purchasing higher quality (organic) food for your family.  These are all positive steps.

More locally sourced food with shorter and less-centralized supply chains are what the world needs to create a more resilient food system, along with more locally-sourced farm  programs, extensive state and federal incentives, better workers’ rights, and stronger antitrust policies.  But, it all begins (and ends) with how we the people spend our hard earned money.

So, let’s do this together.  Buy better quality (organic) food on a daily basis.  Avoid the middle of the supermarket – which is filled with too many unhealthy (overly-processed) foods that damage our health.  And, buy from local farms, as much as possible.  These people work so hard to produce great quality food and they deserve our support.

As we make better food choices – one person at a time – watch how fast our world will change for the better.  What are your thoughts?

Sources for this article include:

Childrenshealthdefense.org
CNN.com
Theguardian.com

 

Papaya Power: Healing Qualities of This Tropical Fruit

© GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC.
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Reproduced from original article:
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Posted on: Tuesday, June 8th 2021 at 4:15 pm
Written By: GreenMedInfo Research Group
This article is copyrighted by GreenMedInfo LLC, 2021


Papaya is more than just a delicious treat, especially when served cold and juicy in its ripeness. It also provides a wealth of benefits against wounds, skin damage and gut problems, to name a few of its precious therapeutic effects lauded since ancient times

Papaya is a standout tropical fruit for abundant reasons. Since time immemorial, the whole plant — from the leaves and seeds to the ripe and unripe fruits — has been used as a traditional medicine. Today its multifaceted healing properties make the sweet, juicy papaya a nutraceutical fruit made for better health.[i]

A single small piece of papaya, weighing 152 grams (g), contains 15 g of carbohydrates, 3 g of fiber and 1 g of protein.[ii] It offers 157% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, 33% of the RDI of vitamin A and trace amounts of magnesium, calcium and vitamins such as B1, B3, B5, E and K.

From its diuretic and anti-hypertensive to wound healing and anti-tumor benefits, the papaya fruit offers not just delicious taste but also all-around wellness support.[iii] Here are some of its therapeutic benefits.

Wound Healing

A 2000 study examined the prevalence of the use of papaya as a topical ulcer dressing by nurses in Jamaica.[iv] Among the respondents, 75% reported using topical papaya, thought to promote desloughing, granulation and healing in chronic skin ulcers.

“It was cost effective. Papaya was considered to be more effective than other topical applications in the treatment of chronic ulcers,” the researchers wrote, although cited some difficulty in preparing the fruit and the occasional burning sensation reported by the patients.

In animal models, papaya extract caused a significant effect on the healing process of an incised oral wound.[v] On the 14th day, papaya extract with 75% concentration demonstrated “perfect epithelial layer and fibrillation,” according to a 2019 study. A separate study showed that Carica papaya promoted significant wound healing in diabetic rats, with the fruit extract exhibiting antimicrobial activity against five organisms tested.[vi]

Dried papaya latex as 1.0% and 2.5% hydrogels was also deemed effective in treating burns and thus supported the traditional use of the fruit for this benefit, based on the findings of 2005 research.[vii]

Improved Digestion

The enzyme called papain in papaya is believed to make protein easier to digest.[viii] In the tropics, papaya is deemed an effective remedy against constipation and the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

In a study, subjects who took a papaya-based formula for 40 days experienced notable improvement in constipation as well as bloating.[ix] Even the seeds, roots and leaves have been shown to help treat ulcers in both humans and animals.[x]

Anticancer Action

The lycopene in papaya has been hailed for its potential to reduce cancer risk.[xi] The papaya leaf is also deemed a likely source of anticancer compounds.[xii]

Papaya has received attention particularly for its effects against breast cancer. A 2009 study found that among 14 fruits and vegetables famed for their antioxidant activities, only papaya had a significantly favorable effect when measured against the breast cancer cell line MCF-7.[xiii]

“Besides, papaya represents a very interesting fruit to explore its antineoplastic activities,” wrote the researchers, who also studied plants like avocado, guava, mango, pineapple, grapes and tomato.

Among Chinese women, consumption of fruits and vegetables such as papaya was inversely related with breast cancer risk.[xiv]

Skin Wellness

The vitamin C and lycopene in papaya are considered protective of skin and may help reduce the signs of aging.[xv] These skin issues include wrinkles, skin sagging and other forms of skin damage, all associated with excess free radical activity.[xvi]

Antifungal Properties

A 1997 study explored the potential therapeutic use of papaya latex sap combined with a synthetic antifungal and found that the formula worked synergistically to inhibit the growth of Candida albicans.[xvii]

In a separate study, papaya latex also inhibited the growth of candida when added to a culture in its exponential growth phase.[xviii] According to the team, “This fungistatic effect is the result of cell wall degradation due to a lack of polysaccharidic constituents in the outermost layers of the fungal cell wall and release of cell debris into the culture medium.”

Should You Eat Papaya Raw?

For all its scientifically documented health benefits, papaya has a unique taste and flavor that’s widely celebrated.

Ripeness, however, is a factor to consider if you’re planning to eat it raw. If ripe, papaya can be eaten raw. Otherwise, it should be cooked before consumption especially if you’re pregnant, as the unripe version is high in latex, which can stimulate contractions.[xix]

Whatever way you choose to enjoy papaya, the health perks from its strong nutrient and antioxidant offerings are here to stay.


References

[i] Parle M et al “Basketful benefits of papaya” Int Res J Pharm. 2011 July;2(7):6-12.

 

[ii] Nutrition Data https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1985/2

[iii] Parle M et al “Basketful benefits of papaya” Int Res J Pharm. July 2011;2(7):6-12.

[iv] Hewitt H et al “Topical use of papaya in chronic skin ulcer therapy in Jamaica” West Indian Med J. 2000 Mar;49(1):32-3.

[v] Hakim R et al “Effect of Extract toward Incised Wound Healing Process in Mice () Clinically and Histologically” Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2019 ;2019:8306519. Epub 2019 Nov 19.

[vi] Nayak S et al “Wound healing activity of Carica papaya L. in experimentally induced diabetic rats” Indian J Exp Biol. 2007 Aug;45(8):739-43.

 

[vii] Gurung S et al “Wound healing properties of Carica papaya latex: in vivo evaluation in mice burn model” Acta Pharm. 2005 Dec;55(4):417-22.

 

[viii] Science Direct, Papain https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/papain

 

[ix] Muss C et al “Papaya preparation (Caricol®) in digestive disorders” Neuro Endocrinol Lett. 2013;34(1):38-46.

 

[x] Pinto L et al “Antiulcerogenic activity of Carica papaya seed in rats” Naunyn Schmiedebergs Arch Pharmacol. 2015 Mar;388(3):305-17. doi: 10.1007/s00210-014-1069-y. Epub 2014 Nov 25.

 

[xi] Gajowik A et al “Lycopene – antioxidant with radioprotective and anticancer properties. A review” Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2014;65(4):263-71.

[xii] Nguyen T et al “Chemical Characterization and in Vitro Cytotoxicity on Squamous Cell Carcinoma Cells of Carica Papaya Leaf Extracts” Toxins (Basel). 2015 ;8(1). Epub 2015 Dec 24.

[xiii] Garcia-Solis P et al “Screening of antiproliferative effect of aqueous extracts of plant foods consumed in Mexico on the breast cancer cell line MCF-7” Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2009 May 26:1-15.

[xiv] Zhang C et al “Greater vegetable and fruit intake is associated with a lower risk of breast cancer among Chinese women” Int J Cancer. 2009 Jul 1;125(1):181-8.

[xv] Schagen S et al “Discovering the link between nutrition and skin aging” Dermatoendocrinol. 2012 Jul 1;4(3):298-307.

[xvi] Kammeyer A et al “Oxidation events and skin aging” Ageing Res Rev. 2015 May;21:16-29.

[xvii] Giordani R et al “A synergistic effect of Carica papaya latex sap and fluconazole on Candida albicans growth” Mycoses. 1997 Dec;40(11-12):429-37.

[xviii] Giordani R et al “Fungicidal activity of latex sap from Carica papaya and antifungal effect of D(+)-glucosamine on Candida albicans growth” Appl Psychophysiol Biofeedback. 2005 Dec;30(4):375-87.

 

[xix] Adebiyi A et al “Papaya (Carica papaya) consumption is unsafe in pregnancy: fact or fable? Scientific evaluation of a common belief in some parts of Asia using a rat model” Br J Nutr. 2002 Aug;88(2):199-203.

 

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Hold the fries! Fried foods increase the risk of MULTIPLE chronic diseases, lead to deadly heart disease

Reproduced from original article:
www.naturalhealth365.com/fried-foods-3842.html

by:  | May 23, 2021

fried-foods(NaturalHealth365) Whether served as buckets of fried chicken, piles of French fries, bags of potato chips, or platters of breaded fish and shrimp, there’s no denying that fried foods have a prominent place in the diets of many Americans.  But a new 2021 meta-analysis published in Heart may make fried foods seem a little less palatable – by linking them with an increased risk of life-threatening chronic diseases.

The CDC reports that about 655,000 Americans lose their lives to heart disease every year.  Nutritionists have long identified the Standard American Diet – low in fruits, vegetables, and fiber and high in unhealthy fats, refined carbs, and sugar – as a major contributor to this grim toll.  (It’s fitting that this destructive diet is abbreviated as SAD.)  The new review goes a step further, evaluating the specific effects of fried foods on heart health – and on the incidence of heart attack and stroke.  The jaw-dropping results may make you think twice about ordering that double serving of fries.

Multiple studies confirm the link between fried foods and cardiovascular disease

Researchers evaluated data from 17 different studies spanning 9.5 years and involving 754,873 participants to conduct the review.

The team found that the group with the highest intake of fried foods increased their risk of major cardiovascular events by 28 percent and their risk of coronary heart disease by 22 percent.  The most eye-opening increase was in the risk of heart failure, which rose by an alarming 37 percent.  Heart failure – which occurs when the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs – features a notoriously poor five-year survival rate.

Earlier studies also pointed to the ill effects of fried food.  In a 2019 study of 155,000 military veterans published in Clinical Nutrition, the researchers noted that eating fried foods one to three times a week raised the risk of heart attack and stroke by 7 percent (compared to consuming these foods less than once a week).  Eating fried food daily – reported by about 5 percent of the participants – caused the risk of these major cardiovascular events to soar 14 percent higher.

Nutritional NIGHTMARE: Levels of toxic fat and calories skyrocket in fried foods

Fried foods, which lose water and absorb fat in the cooking process, are much higher in calories and fat than their baked counterparts.  For example, a 3.5-ounce serving of baked potatoes contains under 100 calories – and zero grams of fat.  But, the calories in a 3.5-ounce serving of French-fried potatoes clock in at a hefty 319 – while fat content swells to a stunning 17 grams.

Clearly, fried foods can contribute to obesity, which is a primary risk factor for heart disease.  And, fried foods don’t do your heart any favors when it comes to lipid profiles, either.  Studies have suggested that they decrease levels of beneficial HDL cholesterol – while increasing blood pressure, to boot.

Fried foods from fast food and chain restaurants can be particularly problematic.  Experts say they are a source of unhealthy “trans fats,” generated from the hydrogenated vegetable oils restaurants use for frying.  These fats are difficult for the body to break down and are linked to heart disease, cancer, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.  Re-using oil is particularly harmful, as the trans fats increase every time the oil is heated.  Finally, fried fast food tends to be loaded with sodium and is often served with sugar-laden drinks – thereby forming the very definition of a “nutritional disaster.”

Good news: The Mediterranean diet is linked with longevity and improved heart health

In addition to avoiding processed, fried, fast foods and junk foods, you can promote heart health with the Mediterranean diet. This healthy way of eating features generous amounts of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, a moderate to high intake of fish, a low intake of saturated fats (such as butter), and a high intake of healthy monounsaturated fats from olive oil, avocados, and nuts.  Dairy products and meat are consumed in relatively low amounts.  Some proponents of the diet recommend very modest consumption of red wine with meals.

Multiple studies have attested to the ability of the Mediterranean diet to help prevent chronic diseases.  In fact, a University of Athens Medical School study of 74,607 European adults over age 60 showed that the Mediterranean diet could prolong life, with participants adhering most consistently to the diet living up to 14 percent longer than those who did not follow it closely.

Word to the wise: Watch out for “unidentified frying objects”

According to Dr. Eugenia Gianos, director of Women’s Heart Health at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, people often associate fried foods with crispy breading and batters.  Yet, some fried foods – think chicken wings, potato chips, or doughnuts – don’t have external breading.  Still, like fried foods, they have the same negative health impact.

Does the research mean that you should ban fried foods from your diet in the interests of heart health?  Or is it still permissible to enjoy a few golden French fries?

Registered dietitian Dana Angelo White, an associate professor at Quinnipiac College in Hamden, Conn., puts it this way.

“Eating small amounts … (of fried food) isn’t the end of the world,” Dr. Gianos commented.  “But,” she added, “the more you eat of fried foods, the worse it is for you.”

Maybe it’s time to start bypassing harmful frying with baking, steaming, grilling, roasting, or broiling.  Your heart will thank you!

Sources for this article include:

ScienceDaily.com
BritishMedicalJournal.com
BBC.Co.uk
CDC.gov
Healthline.com

 

Quercetin: What It Is and Why You Need It

© May 25th 2021 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC.
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Posted on: Wednesday, May 19th 2021 at 4:15 pm
Written By: GreenMedInfo Research Group
This article is copyrighted by GreenMedInfo LLC, 2021

Find out more about quercetin and how this potent antioxidant flavonoid offers significant therapeutic benefits against a wide range of conditions, from diabetes to DNA damage

Flavonoids are one of nature’s many therapeutic gifts. Widely found in fruits and vegetables, these phenolic substances have antioxidant properties that protect cells from free radical damage.[i] One of the most well-known and studied flavonoids is quercetin, a flavonol mostly found in onions, berries, citrus fruits, broccoli and grapes.

A potent antioxidant, quercetin boasts of anti-inflammatory, anti-hypertensive, antiobesity and anti-atherosclerotic actions. Since free radicals figure into the development of diseases, quercetin holds promise for benefitting conditions such as high blood pressure, vascular disorders and metabolic syndrome.[ii] Here is compelling evidence of the health benefits of quercetin.

Potential Anti-Diabetes Aid

The development of Type 2 diabetes has been linked to oxidant stress caused by an unhealthy diet.[iii] Toona sinensis leaves, which are rich in quercetin, may reduce the risk of diabetes by reducing oxidative stress in the liver.

A topical compound containing substances such as quercetin, ascorbyl palmitate and vitamin D3 was formulated to reduce the oxidative stress contributing to peripheral diabetic neuropathy.[iv] A preliminary study in 2005 showed that the compound may safely relieve the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy and enhance quality of life.

Quercetin displayed protective effects in the kidneys and liver of obese animal models with Type 2 diabetes.[v] Together with quinic acid, quercetin also helped ameliorate hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia and insulin resistance in diabetic rats.[vi]

Protection From DNA Damage

A 2011 study investigated the potential protective effects of quercetin against DNA damage and oxidative stress induced by methylmercury in animal subjects.[vii] For over 45 days, animal models were orally treated with methylmercury and the flavonoid with doses reflecting human exposure. The team then measured DNA damage in liver cells called hepatocytes and peripheral leukocytes (white blood cells).

The results revealed that methylmercury reduced the concentration of glutathione in the body by 17% and caused DNA damage to liver and blood cells. With quercetin, no such effects manifested. “In summary, our results indicate that consumption of quercetin-rich foods may protect mercury-exposed humans against the adverse health effects of the metal,” the researchers wrote.[viii]

What makes this benefit particularly crucial is that the prevention of DNA damage is involved in preventing cancer via dietary compounds. An aqueous horseradish extract and its main flavonoids kaempferol and quercetin, for instance, demonstrated potential for DNA damage protection likely by acting as antimutagens.[ix]

Chemopreventive Properties

Epidemiological studies vouch for the protective effects of phytochemicals against cancer risk. As a ubiquitous flavonoid, quercetin is an ideal candidate to fight cancer due to its antioxidant and antiproliferative actions.[x]

It is known to modulate a plethora of molecules for multitargeted cancer prevention and therapy. Here are examples of quercetin’s chemopreventive abilities:

  • Incorporated in liposomes along with resveratrol, quercetin may be valuable in treating inflammation or oxidative stress associated with precancerous or cancerous skin lesions.[xi]
  • Quercetin exhibited a preventive effect on liver cancer in animal models.[xii] Hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common form of liver cancer, is on the rise in many countries, with an estimated 905,677 new cases globally in 2020.[xiii]
  • Quercetin inhibited tumor growth and enhanced the sensitivity to thermotherapy, indicating a potential treatment option for hepatocellular carcinoma.[xiv]
  • The combination of quercetin and ionizing radiation might be a promising therapy for colon cancer treatment through targeting colon cancer stem-like cells and inhibiting the Notch-1 signaling.[xv]
  • Quercetin suppressed the metastatic ability of lung cancer, with potential therapeutic applications for metastatic non-small cell lung cancer in particular.[xvi]

Prevention and Treatment of Various Infections

Quercetin may protect against the antibiotic-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae infection mainly through inhibiting pneumolysin, a pore-forming cytotoxin and a major determinant of virulence.[xvii] Separate findings previously highlighted quercetin’s therapeutic potential in treating sepsis as well.[xviii]

The flavonoid derivative quercetin-3β-O-D-glucoside (Q3G) also showed promising antiviral activity against two distinct species of Ebola, outbreaks of which occur frequently in African countries.[xix]

Hyaluronic acid, chondroitin sulfate, curcumin and quercetin taken together were also effective in preventing recurrent urinary tract infections in postmenopausal women.[xx]

Read more about scientific proof of the therapeutic value and significance of quercetin across numerous health issues and conditions in the nearly 600 abstracts with quercetin research found on the GreenMedInfo.com database.

 


References

[i] David A et al “Overviews of Biological Importance of Quercetin: A Bioactive Flavonoid” Pharmacogn Rev. 2016 Jul-Dec; 10(20): 84-89.

[ii] David A et al “Overviews of Biological Importance of Quercetin: A Bioactive Flavonoid” Pharmacogn Rev. 2016 Jul-Dec; 10(20): 84-89.

[iii] Zhang Y et al “Quercetin Isolated from Toona sinensis Leaves Attenuates Hyperglycemia and Protects Hepatocytes in High-Carbohydrate/High-Fat Diet and Alloxan Induced Experimental Diabetic Mice” J Diabetes Res. 2016 ;2016:8492780. Epub 2016 Nov 15.

[iv] Valensi P et al “A multicenter, double-blind, safety study of QR-333 for the treatment of symptomatic diabetic peripheral neuropathy. A preliminary report” J Diabetes Complications. 2005 Sep-Oct;19(5):247-53.

[v] Lai L et al “Protective effects of quercetin and crocin in the kidneys and liver of obese Sprague-Dawley rats with Type 2 diabetes: Effects of quercetin and crocin on T2DM rats” Hum Exp Toxicol. 2020 Oct 6:960327120954521.

[vi] Arya A et al “Synergistic effect of quercetin and quinic acid by alleviating structural degeneration in the liver, kidney and pancreas tissues of STZ-induced diabetic rats: a mechanistic study” Food Chem Toxicol. 2014 Sep ;71:183-96. Epub 2014 Jun 19.

[vii] Barcelos G et al “Protective properties of quercetin against DNA damage and oxidative stress induced by methylmercury in rats” Arch Toxicol. 2011 Feb 1. Epub 2011 Feb 1.

[viii] Barcelos G et al “Protective properties of quercetin against DNA damage and oxidative stress induced by methylmercury in rats” Arch Toxicol. 2011 Feb 1. Epub 2011 Feb 1.

[ix] Molecules. 2014 ;19(3):3160-72. Epub 2014 Mar 14. PMID: 24637991 www.greenmedinfo.com/article/aqueous-horseradish-extract-and-its-main-flavonoids-kaempferol-and-quercetin-h

[x] Priyadarsini R et al “The flavonoid quercetin modulates the hallmark capabilities of hamster buccal pouch tumors” Nutr Cancer. 2011 Feb 2:1. Epub 2011 Feb 2.

[xi] Caddeo C et al “Effect of quercetin and resveratrol co-incorporated in liposomes against inflammatory/oxidative response associated with skin cancer” Int J Pharm. 2016 Nov 20 ;513(1-2):153-163. Epub 2016 Aug 5.

[xii] Seufi A et al “Preventive effect of the flavonoid, quercetin, on hepatic cancer in rats via oxidant/antioxidant activity: molecular and histological evidences” J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2009 ;28:80. Epub 2009 Jun 11.

[xiii] Medscape January 31, 2021 https://www.medscape.com/answers/197319-39196/what-is-the-global-incidence-of-hepatocellular-carcinoma-hcc-worldwide

[xiv] Dai W et al “Quercetin induces apoptosis and enhances 5-FU therapeutic efficacy in hepatocellular carcinoma” Tumour Biol. 2015 Dec 1. Epub 2015 Dec 1.

[xv] Li Y et al “Quercetin pretreatment enhances the radiosensitivity of colon cancer cells by targeting Notch-1 pathway” Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2020 Jan 18. Epub 2020 Jan 18.

[xvi] Chang J et al “Quercetin suppresses the metastatic ability of lung cancer through inhibiting Snail-dependent Akt activation and Snail-independent ADAM9 expression pathways” Biochim Biophys Acta. 2017 10 ;1864(10):1746-1758. Epub 2017 Jun 23.

[xvii] Lv Q et al “Quercetin, a pneumolysin inhibitor, protects mice against Streptococcus pneumoniae infection” Microb Pathog. 2020 Mar ;140:103934. Epub 2019 Dec 17.

[xviii] Cui W et al “Quercetin Exerted Protective Effects in a Rat Model of Sepsis via Inhibition of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and Downregulation of High Mobility Group Box 1 (HMGB1) Protein Expression” Med Sci Monit. 2019 Aug 4 ;25:5795-5800. Epub 2019 Aug 4.

[xix] Qiu X et al “Prophylactic efficacy of Quercetin-3-β-O-D-glucoside against Ebola virus infection” Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2016 Jun 13. Epub 2016 Jun 13.

[xx] Torella M et al “Efficacy of an orally administered combination of hyaluronic acid, chondroitin sulfate, curcumin and quercetin for the prevention of recurrent urinary tract infections in postmenopausal women” Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2016 Dec ;207:125-128. Epub 2016 Nov 1.

GMI Research Group

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Medicinal food combats Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, new study reveals

Reproduced from original article:
www.naturalhealth365.com/alzheimers-disease-medicinal-food-3839.html

by:  | May 21, 2021

alzheimers-disease-medicinal-food(NaturalHealth365) The “graying of America” has led to soaring rates of Alzheimer’s disease, an age-related neurodegenerative condition that currently affects 6.2 million adults in the United States.  And, there is worse to come.  According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia doubles every 10 years after the age of 60 – leading experts to predict that cases of cognitive decline will skyrocket to 13.8 million by the year 2050.

Conventionally speaking, there is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, characterized by deep deficiencies of memory and impaired cognitive function.  And, while Western medicine attempts to ease symptoms with pharmaceutical medications such as cholinesterase inhibitors, the general ineffectiveness and side effects of these drugs have caused researchers to search for novel, natural therapies with multi-targeted potential.  But, now, an exciting new review indicates that ginger combats Alzheimer’s disease.  Let’s look at how this medicinal food can fight Alzheimer’s disease through multiple action methods.

BIG NEWS:  Ginger constituent works against biomarkers and triggers of Alzheimer’s disease

In a sweeping new review published in January 2021 in Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy, the authors evaluated cell, animal, and human studies involving ginger and its constituents – such as gingerols, shogaol, and borneol.

While many of ginger’s compounds have protective effects on the brain, the reviewers reported that one in particular – 6-gingerol – seemed to prevent aberrations in amyloid-beta proteins and act against cellular damage.

This is exciting news – as Alzheimer’s disease can occur when abnormal amyloid-beta proteins accumulate into “plaques,” which in turn can cause the death of brain cells (neurons).  Abnormal amyloid-beta proteins are also associated with aberrations (phosphorylations) in another group of brain proteins known as tau.  This can lead to the creation of snarled neurofibrillary filaments known as “tau tangles,” which can increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.  (In fact, scientists have noted that there is a strong connection between levels of phosphorylated tau in the cerebrospinal fluid and the decline of cognitive function in Alzheimer’s disease).

Misfolded amyloid-beta proteins can have other negative effects as well.  Chronic exposure induces the release of inflammatory chemicals (interleukins) associated with Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia may also be triggered by oxidative stress, inflammation, and reductions in important antioxidants such as superoxide dismutase and glutathione.

Researchers are learning exactly how ginger combats Alzheimer’s disease

Strongly anti-inflammatory, ginger helps to inhibit pro-inflammatory cytokines and reduce chronic inflammation.  Ginger’s constituents are also potent antioxidants, helping reduce harmful free radicals that can damage amyloid-beta proteins.

In addition, the researchers noted that ginger constituents increase levels of superoxide dismutase and glutathione – the body’s most important antioxidant enzymes – in the liver.

“Studies have shown that existing phenolic compounds … including gingerols and shogaols have a neuroprotective effect in conditions affecting memory and the aging process,” the authors stated.

In an earlier study published in Pharmacology and Therapeutics in 2018, the researchers came to the same conclusion, reporting that ginger and its constituents improved “cognitive function by regulating amyloid-beta plaque-induced neuronal cell death and memory impairments.”

In both reviews, the researchers concluded by endorsing ginger as a “safe nutraceutical” that can be used to combat neurodegenerative disease.

Study shows ginger improves cognitive function in healthy, older adults

There’s more good news, courtesy of an earlier study highlighted by the newest review.

In 2011, researchers in Thailand examined the benefits of ginger on cognitive function in healthy middle-aged women.  Sixty female participants, with an average age of 53, were randomly assigned to receive either a placebo or a standardized ginger extract – at either 400 mg or 800 mg a day – for two months.

The team found that the ginger-treated groups enjoyed significant enhancements in working memory.  The daily 800-mg amount appeared to be most effective, with researchers noting that it improved the power of attention and the speed and quality of memory.  They credited 6-gingerol with the therapeutic effects, noting that it increased levels of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter essential for learning and memory.  They also suggested that the strong antioxidant effects of gingerols and shogaols played a role.

Adding that no serious adverse effects were reported, the scientists credited ginger as a potential brain tonic to enhance cognitive functioning for middle-aged women.

Significantly, ginger seemed to play a role in helping to ward off mild cognitive decline, which can be a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease.

Ginger – a respected staple of Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine healing systems – offers POWERFUL health benefits

Botanically known as Zingiber officinale, ginger has a long and venerable history as a medicinal herb.  Since antiquity, ginger root has been used in Ayurveda for infantile colic, bronchitis, indigestion, and respiratory diseases.  It has been utilized in China to support heart health, treat sore throats, vanquish infectious diseases, eliminate parasites and even ward off stroke.  Perhaps most significantly, ginger has a long history of use in traditional Persian medicine to treat memory impairments and dementia.

Modern-day studies have shown that ginger not only protects the neurological system but the intestinal tract and liver as well.  In addition, it helps to modulate the immune system – making it a potential intervention for autoimmune diseases – helps lower blood sugar and is antioxidative, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anticancer.  In addition to its other uses, ginger is commonly advised to ease nausea, indigestion, and motion sickness.

Ginger’s piquant taste makes it an ideal addition to everyday recipes

You can add grated fresh ginger root to soups, vegetables, and salads, or juice it and use it to add a little “zing” to a smoothie.  You can also steep slices of the fresh root for a flavorful tea.

Supplementary ginger extract is available in capsules, with natural healers typically recommending amounts ranging from 400 mg to 2,000 mg a day.  However, consult your integrative physician before using supplementary ginger.

Alzheimer’s disease, a devastating condition that robs elderly adults of their precious memories and cognition, is currently the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.  The brand-new research, showing that ginger combats Alzheimer’s, couldn’t come at a better time.  Let’s hope that the good news about its amazing potential to prevent and treat dementia is not overlooked by Western medicine.

Sources for this article include:

Wiley.com
NIH.gov
Hindawi.com
ScienceDirect.com

Seasonal Allergies? These 6 Foods May Help

© May 21st 2021 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC.
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Posted on: Tuesday, May 18th 2021 at 4:30 pm
Written By: GreenMedInfo Research Group
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When seasonal allergies flare, do you reach for antihistamine drugs that can leave you edgy and dehydrated? If you’d like to explore natural options for your runny nose, sneezing, itchy eyes, and post-nasal drip, these six foods, all rich in nutrients called flavonoids, may help you combat hay fever

The first signs of spring are unmistakable for the allergy-prone: red, watery eyes, congestion, a pervasive tickle in your throat and, of course, fatigue; how do you sleep when you can’t breathe freely?

While some people reach for over-the-counter medication at the first sign of allergies, side effects like drowsiness, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea and vomiting may be giving you pause. These top six anti-allergy foods are nature’s way of helping you breathe easy and enjoy the fruits of spring.

It’s All About the Flavonoids

The prevalence of allergic diseases has increased worldwide in the last 20 years. The standard American diet (SAD) is a causal factor that is scientifically linked to this increase as well as to worsened symptoms for allergy sufferers.[i]

As natural health enthusiasts know, increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet can provide an array of health benefits, including boosting immunity to illness and disease. Flavonoids are phytonutrients found in plant foods that are one of the key components identified by science as driving this boost in resilience.

A 2007 study reported that flavonoids, ubiquitously present in fruits, vegetables and teas, inhibit histamine release and suppress the body’s allergic response.[ii] Top anti-allergy foods contain copious quantities of flavonoids to help you manage allergy symptoms without the draining effects of medication.

1. Onions (Quercetin)

You may not know what quercetin is, but you’re already acquainted if onions are a part of your diet. A natural plant pigment, quercetin is a flavonoid found in fruits like apples and berries, in vegetables like broccoli, and in herbs like tea and St. John’s wort.

Onions and shallots are considered the most important source of quercetin in many countries since they are available year-round. Quercetin is known for stimulating the immune system through antioxidant and anti-allergic properties characterized by antiviral activity and antihistamine effects.[iii]

Quercetin’s allergy-busting superpowers are so pronounced, quercetin extract is the main ingredient of many anti-allergy drugs and supplements.[iv] When your seasonal allergies start flaring, try adding sulfur-rich onions liberally to your diet. The highest concentration of quercetin is found in the outer rings where it provides UV-protection for the bulb.[v]

If you balk at the thought of eating onions, quercetin is available as a dietary supplement to aid during times of hay fever and high pollen count.

2. Turmeric (Curcumin)

Curcumin, one of the active flavonoids in the spice turmeric, is a super-supplement with a long history of use for health concerns that cause inflammation, such as seasonal allergies. Curcumin’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties have been clinically validated to support the body when the discomforts of hay fever start to flare.

Curcumin’s anti-allergy effects have been researched for decades, including a 2015 study examining the impact of curcumin supplementation on inflammatory markers detected in the body during an allergic reaction, including histamines and cytokines.[vi]

Researchers found that curcumin improved symptoms of allergic rhinitis, inhibited the changes in nasal mucosa associated with allergic reactions and decreased serum levels of histamines in mice. Curcumin also significantly suppressed the production of inflammatory cytokines in the blood.[vii]

3. Bee Pollen (Propolis)

Bee pollen is an ancient aid for human health, helpful for issues like fever reduction and wound healing, and as a topical medicament due to its antiseptic and disinfectant properties.[viii] An enzyme-rich mix of flower pollens, honey, wax and bee secretions, bee pollen granules contain essential vitamins and amino acids and are a potent source of plant flavonoids.[ix]

Bee propolis is related to, but not the same as, bee pollen. A resinous substance made by bees as they gather exudate from trees, propolis is a popular health supplement worldwide. Waxy in nature, bees use propolis to construct their hives, and this miraculous substance has been studied as a human health aid for conditions including upper respiratory infections, colds, flus and seasonal allergies.[x]

In a study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, researchers explored the efficacy of honeybee-collected pollen on allergic reactions in the bloodstream. Daily oral administration of bee pollen to mice significantly reduced cellular-level activation of specific blood antigens found during an allergic reaction.[xi]

Propolis and bee pollen extracts are available for seasonal or year-round consumption. With more bioactive components, extracts may be the fastest route to quick allergy relief.[xii]

4. Kiwi (Vitamin C)

Kiwifruits, commonly referred to as kiwis in the U.S., are a premier source of vitamin C,[xiii] a key nutrient in diet-based illness-prevention strategies. Adequate vitamin C in your diet helps stave off disease and may boost your resistance to seasonal allergies.

A 2013 study explored the association of antioxidants with allergic rhinitis (AR) in children.[xiv] Allergic rhinitis refers to a group of symptoms affecting the nose and nasal passages and may include common allergic responses to dust, pollen, or pet dander.

Noting the increase in allergic diseases in recent decades, researchers tested the potential link between intake of vitamins A, C and E on allergy symptoms. Children with AR were placed into four groups, one each receiving supplementation of vitamin C, A or E, and one control group.

The group receiving supplemental vitamin C had fewer AR symptoms,[xv] suggesting that a boost of vitamin C, in the form of a little green kiwi, is just what the sinus doctor ordered.

5. Broccoli Sprouts

Sprouted broccoli seeds are a rich source of the sulfur-based nutrient sulforaphane, which may help attenuate allergic rhinitis by reducing inflammation in the nasal passages.[xvi] A potent anti-inflammatory, sulforaphane also works to detoxify your body by neutralizing free radicals,[xvii] actions that may help reduce symptoms of allergy flare-ups.

Airborne pollutants cause oxidative stress that can contribute to the incidence of allergy and asthma, problems often exacerbated during hay fever season. A 2014 study demonstrated that treatment with broccoli sprout extract, containing high concentrations of sulforaphane, suppressed the nasal inflammatory response in human subjects exposed to levels of diesel exhaust particles equivalent to driving on a Los Angeles freeway during evening rush hour traffic.[xviii]

Results showed that the average nasal white blood cell count increased by 66% over the period of initial screening and increased by a whopping 85% over control group levels 24 hours after initial exposure to the diesel toxins.[xix]

6. Kimchi

Studies on probiotics have demonstrated their effectiveness at reducing allergy symptoms. One symptom that may accompany an allergic attack is wheezing — labored breathing when congestion is present in the lungs, creating a whistle-like sound.

 

A 2010 study explored the use of probiotics to suppress allergic responses in the airways and found that when it comes to medicine, food truly is the best form around.

The study compared the effectiveness of probiotics obtained from heat-killed lactobacilli strains, like those often found in commercial probiotic supplements, and lactobacillus sakei bacteria isolated from kimchi, a spicy fermented vegetable dish. Results showed that eating kimchi was more effective at suppressing a hyper-allergic response in the airways than heat-killed lactic acid bacteria.[xx]

Eating fermented vegetables like kimchi introduces live strains of healthy bacteria into your gut, allowing breakdown in the digestive tract and facilitating enculturation of these heat-sensitive bacteria.

Prepared kimchi is widely available in Asian markets, but it’s easy to make your own. Mix roughly chopped cabbage, ginger, onions, garlic and red chilis with brine and store in airtight jars. While fresh vegetables may only be viable for a matter of days, fermenting vegetables in brine can increase shelf-life to several months.


References

[i] Kawai M, Hirano T, Higa S, Arimitsu J, Maruta M, Kuwahara Y, Ohkawara T, Hagihara K, Yamadori T, Shima Y, Ogata A, Kawase I, Tanaka T. Flavonoids and related compounds as anti-allergic substances. Allergol Int. 2007 Jun;56(2):113-23. doi: 10.2332/allergolint.R-06-135. Epub 2007 Mar 1. PMID: 17384531

 

[ii] Kawai M, Hirano T, Higa S, Arimitsu J, Maruta M, Kuwahara Y, Ohkawara T, Hagihara K, Yamadori T, Shima Y, Ogata A, Kawase I, Tanaka T. Flavonoids and related compounds as anti-allergic substances. Allergol Int. 2007 Jun;56(2):113-23. doi: 10.2332/allergolint.R-06-135. Epub 2007 Mar 1. PMID: 17384531

 

[iii] Mlcek J, Jurikova T, Skrovankova S, Sochor J. Quercetin and Its Anti-Allergic Immune Response. Molecules. 2016;21(5):623. Published 2016 May 12. doi: 10.3390/molecules21050623

 

[iv] Mlcek J, Jurikova T, Skrovankova S, Sochor J. Quercetin and Its Anti-Allergic Immune Response. Molecules. 2016;21(5):623. Published 2016 May 12. doi: 10.3390/molecules21050623

 

[v] Mlcek J, Jurikova T, Skrovankova S, Sochor J. Quercetin and Its Anti-Allergic Immune Response. Molecules. 2016;21(5):623. Published 2016 May 12. doi: 10.3390/molecules21050623

 

[vi] Ning Zhang, Hong Li, Jihui Jia, Mingqiang He. Anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin on mast cell-mediated allergic responses in ovalbumin-induced allergic rhinitis mouse. Cell Immunol. 2015 Nov-Dec;298(1-2):88-95. Epub 2015 Sep 28. PMID: 26507910

 

[vii] Ning Zhang, Hong Li, Jihui Jia, Mingqiang He. Anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin on mast cell-mediated allergic responses in ovalbumin-induced allergic rhinitis mouse. Cell Immunol. 2015 Nov-Dec;298(1-2):88-95. Epub 2015 Sep 28. PMID: 26507910

 

[viii] Wagh VD. Propolis: a wonder bees product and its pharmacological potentials. Adv Pharmacol Sci. 2013;2013:308249. doi: 10.1155/2013/308249

 

[ix] Joanna Kocot, Małgorzata Kiełczykowska, Dorota Luchowska-Kocot, Jacek Kurzepa, Irena Musik, “Antioxidant Potential of Propolis, Bee Pollen, and Royal Jelly: Possible Medical Application”, Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, vol. 2018, Article ID 7074209, 29 pages, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/7074209

 

[x] Wagh VD. Propolis: a wonder bees product and its pharmacological potentials. Adv Pharmacol Sci. 2013;2013:308249. doi: 10.1155/2013/308249

 

[xi] Ishikawa Y, Tokura T, Nakano N, Hara M, Niyonsaba F, Ushio H, Yamamoto Y, Tadokoro T, Okumura K, Ogawa H. Inhibitory effect of honeybee-collected pollen on mast cell degranulation in vivo and in vitro. J Med Food. 2008 Mar;11(1):14-20. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2006.163. PMID: 18361733

 

[xii] Joanna Kocot, Małgorzata Kiełczykowska, Dorota Luchowska-Kocot, Jacek Kurzepa, Irena Musik, “Antioxidant Potential of Propolis, Bee Pollen, and Royal Jelly: Possible Medical Application”, Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, vol. 2018, Article ID 7074209, 29 pages, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/7074209

 

[xiii] Vissers MC, Carr AC, Pullar JM, Bozonet SM. The bioavailability of vitamin C from kiwifruit. Adv Food Nutr Res. 2013;68:125-47. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-394294-4.00007-9. PMID: 23394985.

 

[xiv] Seo JH, Kwon SO, Lee SY, et al. Association of antioxidants with allergic rhinitis in children from seoul. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res. 2013;5(2):81-87. doi: 10.4168/aair.2013.5.2.81

 

[xv] Seo JH, Kwon SO, Lee SY, et al. Association of antioxidants with allergic rhinitis in children from seoul. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res. 2013;5(2):81-87. doi: 10.4168/aair.2013.5.2.81

 

[xvi] David Heber, Zhaoping Li, Maria Garcia-Lloret, Angela M Wong, Tsz Ying Amy Lee, Gail Thames, Michael Krak, Yanjun Zhang, Andre Nel. Sulforaphane-rich broccoli sprout extract attenuates nasal allergic response to diesel exhaust particles. Food Funct. 2014 Jan ;5(1):35-41. PMID: 24287881

 

[xvii] Egner PA et al, “Rapid and sustainable detoxication of airborne pollutants by broccoli sprout beverage: results of a randomized clinical trial in china.” Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2014 Aug;7(8):813-23. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24913818

 

[xviii] David Heber, Zhaoping Li, Maria Garcia-Lloret, Angela M Wong, Tsz Ying Amy Lee, Gail Thames, Michael Krak, Yanjun Zhang, Andre Nel. Sulforaphane-rich broccoli sprout extract attenuates nasal allergic response to diesel exhaust particles. Food Funct. 2014 Jan ;5(1):35-41. PMID: 24287881

[xix] David Heber, Zhaoping Li, Maria Garcia-Lloret, Angela M Wong, Tsz Ying Amy Lee, Gail Thames, Michael Krak, Yanjun Zhang, Andre Nel. Sulforaphane-rich broccoli sprout extract attenuates nasal allergic response to diesel exhaust particles. Food Funct. 2014 Jan ;5(1):35-41. PMID: 24287881

 

[xx] Hye-Jin Hong, Eugene Kim, Daeho Cho, Tae Sung Kim. Differential suppression of heat-killed lactobacilli isolated from kimchi, a Korean traditional food, on airway hyper-responsiveness in mice. J Clin Immunol. 2010 May;30(3):449-58. Epub 2010 Mar 5. PMID: 20204477

 

GMI Research Group

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Fermented brew offers DELICIOUS way to ward off disease-causing bacteria and restore microbiome

Reproduced from original article:
https://www.naturalhealth365.com/kefir-improves-microbiome-3834.html

by:  | May 17, 2021

kefir-fights-disease-causing-bacteria(NaturalHealth365) Thanks to the fermentation craze, fizzy, probiotic-forward drinks such as kefir and kombucha are the elixirs of choice in health food circles.  Originating in the Caucasus Mountains and derived from the Turkish word keyif, meaning “feeling good,” kefir is a nutrient-dense, milk-based drink packed with protein, B vitamins, potassium, and calcium.  But it’s kefir’s high level of probiotics, a group of living cultures that help balance intestinal flora and improve gut health (microbiome), that have health-conscious consumers reaching for the sour, creamy concoction.  Kefir is a wonder drink that has been popular in certain parts of the world for centuries, but if you’re just learning about it now, you’re not alone. .. kefir (pronounced keh-feer) has long lived in the shadow of kombucha, its trendy, probiotic “cousin.”

Kefir is an ancient beverage with modern benefits, and its rising popularity as a mainstream, health-enhancing drink is backed by countless studies.  The reputed health benefits of the fermented brew include lowering cholesterol, reducing inflammation, and exerting antioxidant properties.  Moreover, a new study published in the journal BMC Microbiome reports that researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) in Be’er Sheva, Israel, have discovered that a type of yeast in kefir called Kluyveromyces marxianus secretes a molecule that disrupts bacterial communication.  It’s a breakthrough that could inspire the development of new ways to tackle antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

Kefir provides science-backed health benefits, improved gut health is only one of them 

In 2018, the popularity of fermented foods increased by 149%, and whether it’s kefir, kombucha, miso, yogurt, or sauerkraut, consumers still can’t get enough of cultured foods.  And it’s easy to see why.

The enteric nervous system, or microbiome, is commonly referred to as our “second brain,” and the state of our gut is one of the most important things for overall good health and wellbeing.  Not only does kefir have three times the amount of probiotics than yogurt, but according to a review in Frontiers in Microbiology, the tangy, sweet/sour drink also provides the following health benefits:

  • Improves cholesterol profile
  • Supports a healthier immune system
  • Possesses antibacterial and antifungal properties
  • Has antitumor activity against cancer cells
  • Decreases inflammation
  • Promotes a healthier digestive system

Here are the best ways to enjoy this versatile fizzy drink

The most popular way to consume kefir is as a cold beverage.  Due to its fizzy effervescence, kefir is nicknamed “the champagne of milk.”  While an adventurous home fermenter can easily make kefir using the fermentation of yeast and bacteria (kefir grains), numerous kefir brands (Nomadic, Maple Hill Organic, and Green Valley Creamery, to name a few) are available in health food stores and artisan markets.

In fact, kefir is such a hot commodity that the global kefir market is projected to reach 1.84 billion by 2027 (so if you don’t see it at your mainstream grocery store now, you will soon.)

In addition to drinking kefir as a beverage, it can also be used in place of milk in your cereal, substituted for creamer in coffee, added to smoothies or granola, or cooked with.  It’s commonly used in baked goods (bread, pancakes) soups, and salad dressings, and marinades.

Sources for this article include:

Medicalnewstoday.com