I used to think of seaweed as just a beneficial whole-food source of minerals like iodine, for which it is the most concentrated dietary source. Indeed, just a daily half-teaspoon of mild seaweeds, like arame or dulse, or two sheets of nori should net you all the iodine you need for the day. But, the intake of seaweeds is advised not only as a whole-food source of iodine but also, evidently, “for the prevention of lifestyle-related diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease….” Based on what?


Wakame Seaweed Salad May Lower Blood Pressure, the reasoning is that the Japanese live long and eat seaweed, so there is speculation that seaweed might have “influence on life expectancy,” based on suggestive reports. But when we see long lists of the supposed benefits a particular food is purported to have, such as “compounds found in [seaweed] have various biological activities including anticoagulant, anti-viral, antioxidant, anti-allergic, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, anti-obesity, and neuroprotective properties,” we need to know if they are based on clinical data, meaning studies with actual people, or so-called preclinical data, that is, from test tubes and lab animals. I mean, what are we supposed to do with a study talking about the effects of “seaweed-restructured pork diets” on rats? Those researchers tried to use seaweed, as well as other ingredients, to “improv[e] the ‘image’ of meat product.” Researchers also tried to add grape seeds to meat, they tried flaxseeds, they tried walnuts, they tried purple rice, and they even tried “thong-weed.”
When you look at epidemiological studies, where you compare the diets and disease rates within a population, you see that Japanese pre-schoolers who eat seaweed tend to have lower blood pressures, suggesting “seaweed might have beneficial effects on blood pressure among children.” That could make sense given all the minerals and fiber in seaweed, but cause and effect can’t be proven with this kind of study. Perhaps other components of the diet that went along with seaweed eating that made the difference.


It’s even harder to do these kinds of studies on adults, since so many people are on high blood pressure medications. University of Tokyo researchers took an innovative approach by comparing the diets of people on different intensities of medication: low-dose of a single blood pressure drug, high-dose of a single drug, and multiple drugs. And, although they all had artificially normalized blood pressure “as a result of effective medication,” those who ate the most fruits and sea vegetables tended to be the ones on the lower dose of a single drug, supporting a dietary role for seaweed. An interesting finding, but why not just put it to the test?
A double-blind, crossover trial found that seaweed fiber lowered blood pressure, apparently by pulling sodium out of the system. Real seaweed couldn’t be used in the study, because the subjects wouldn’t be able to be fooled with a placebo, but why not just put whole powdered seaweed into pills? That was finally attempted ten years later. Compared to doing nothing, subjects receiving a daily dose of dried wakame powder in capsules had beautiful drops in blood pressure. The researchers, however, desalinized the seaweed, taking out about two-thirds of the sodium naturally found in it. So, we still don’t know if eating seaweed salad is actually going to help with blood pressure. What we need is a randomized, controlled trial with plain, straight seaweed. No one had ever done that research, until…they did!


Six grams of wakame, with all of its natural sodium, led to a significant drop in blood pressure, especially in those who started out with high pressure. The subjects experienced only minor side effects and ones that could be expected with increasing fiber intake. A nice thing about whole-food, plant-based interventions is that we sometimes get good side effects, such as the resolution of gastritis (stomach inflammation) some subject had been having, as well as the disappearance of chronic headaches.

thank you Dr Michael Greger, M.D.

I’m also a fan of these Certified Organic Raw Nori Sheets, which are dried at under 85 degrees and tested daily for pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, radiation, and other contaminants.

Recent survey results showed that an estimated 80% of American and British people aged between 25 and 64 don’t get enough weekly exercise to meet government recommended levels of daily activity. Although fitness seems to be on the rise as more people are doing some form of exercise, most adults find it difficult to manage doing both strength and aerobic exercise.

Those who decide to improve their health with exercise often dismiss walking as not enough to lose weight and gain fitness. Fact is, walking is the oldest human physical activity, provide excellent benefits and cost very little.

When you make that decision to get off the couch or out from behind the desk, walking is a great way to start and feel and see your daily progress.  Walking burns calories and speeds up your metabolism without wearing down your joints and can benefit your health in various ways.

The London School of Economics and Political Science’s recent study found walking as one of the best exercises to fight weight gain, even more so that going to a gym. Over thirteen years, the study considered the effects of various workouts on health markers in over 50,000 adults and found walkers to be slimmer than regular gym goers and those who only does high- intensity workouts. Dozens of studies prior done before have shown that daily walking keep people feeling younger, happier and healthier.

A brisk 30 minute daily walk has been linked to having a lower body mass index and smaller waistline compared to non-walkers and were particularly noticeable in three population areas who struggle with their weight, those over 50, women and low income earners.

Walking has since the beginning of time, unintentionally, helped people control their body weight and boost their longevity. The 1990’s saw the start of intentional walking to lose weight and fight certain diseases, gaining traction when the Centers for Disease Control in partnership with the American College of Sports Medicine first recommended at least 30 minutes of “brisk walking” for all adults most days of the week. The American Heart Association also got on board with the “30 minutes of walking daily” message and since then walking became the gold standard for meeting the guidelines of daily “moderate-intensity physical activity,” do-able at any time, by virtually anyone at little or no cost.

Over the years, walking has been linked to protection against certain conditions and diseases, including:

Obesity

Heart disease, hypertension, coronary artery disease

Diabetes

Depression and anxiety disorders

Dementia, Alzheimer’s and cognitive decline

Arthritis

Hormonal imbalances

PMS symptoms

Thyroid disorders

Fatigue and low energy levels

6 Health Benefits of Walking

  1. Helps Maintain a Healthy Weight

Walking is just as effective and perhaps more in some instances, than more intense workouts in terms of weight loss and maintenance. Walking at a brisk pace uses a good amount of energy with the added advantage that it’s an easy exercise to keep up with, has less chance of causing injury and won’t leave you exhausted compared to more intense workouts.

  1. Low-Impact and Easy on Joints

Walking is one of the safest forms of exercise there is and can help fight chronic disease. Everyone, including obese adults, the elderly and those with existing conditions like diabetes, heart disease and arthritis will benefit.

Regular walking supports joints with improved circulation which helps the lymphatic system to do its job, i.e. flushing toxins out of the body and lowering inflammation. Joint cartilage has no direct blood supply but the more you move, the more your synovial joint fluid circulates, allowing oxygen and nutrients to delicate or injured areas. Whether you have or had injuries in the past or not, it’s always best to start with a warm up stretch and steady, slow walk with a rest and stretch in between if needed. Pick up the pace once you feel confident to do so

  1. Good for Improving and Preserving Heart Health

A study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine in 2013 found that a brisk walk has beneficial effects on resting heart rate, blood pressure, exercise capacity, maximal oxygen consumption and quality of life. Furthermore it showed that patients with various diseases had significant benefits, such as protection from heart attacks, strokes or coronary heart disease.

The golden standard – a daily brisk 30 minute walk – is considered a simple, safe and effective form of exercise for everyone, including older people, those with a history of disease or have previous injuries excluding them from high-intensity workouts. For more heart-healthy benefits, try to gradually increase your total walking time, distance, frequency, pace and energy expenditure.

  1. Fights Depression And Improves Mood

All exercise, including walking are beneficial for depression and mood related problems. Commonly known as ‘’runners high’’ all forms of exercise release natural ‘feel good’ hormones in the brain, including endorphins. Walking barefoot in the sand or grass in direct contact with the earth, soaking up some sun is another easy way to feel happier.

A study done by the University of California San Francisco found that walking is associated with longevity while a study from the same department followed 6,000 women over the age of 65 found that walking 2.5 miles per day resulted in significantly more protection from memory loss than walking less than a half-mile per week.

  1. Supports Bone Health Into Older Age

As with other types of exercise, walking regularly can help stop the loss of bone mass (porous bone disease) with age. By walking, you are effectively fighting against gravity, forces the bones to become stronger to continue supporting your body weight which reduces the risk for fractures or osteoporosis a common disease in the elderly.

A study done by Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that postmenopausal women who walked for 30 minutes a day reduced their risk of hip fractures by 40 percent.

  1. Can Be Done Anywhere and Doesn’t Require Equipment

Simple, effective and free – that’s the beauty of walking. Step out of your door and away you go. If you can’t manage 30 minutes in one go for whatever reason, make it up during the day by taking shorter walks with the aim of meeting your goal of 30 or 60 minutes, when you’re ready to go further. Every walk will contribute to better muscular, heart and hormonal functioning.

Educate Inspire Change.

Cinnamon – it’s one of the healthiest spices in the world and has been used as a traditional herbal medicine for centuries. (1) (2) However, there are different types of cinnamon – and they are not all created equally.

That’s right – you may not be getting the true benefits of cinnamon at all, even if you do buy the small spice jar labeled “cinnamon.” There’s a big difference among the varieties due to a wide supply of cinnamon from around the world. Read on to recognize how to buy real cinnamon and avoid the junk.

The History Behind Cinnamon

The use of cinnamon dates back to ancient Egypt. The ancient Egyptians used it as a medicine, a spice, and as an embalming agent. (3)

Egyptians used cinnamon as both a medicine and embalming agent.

Cinnamon was so valued that it was considered more precious than gold at the time. (4) This was due to its scarcity and its multiple uses. Some of the earliest mentions of cinnamon are in the bible, and it was already important in civilizations dating back to 2000 BC. Cinnamon’s importance would continue to be extremely valuable; the Chinese and Europeans also came to use cinnamon in a daily capacity, as both a spice and a healing agent. Cinnamon’s value increased; although the actual source of cinnamon was widely unknown to many, it was used a great deal for its delicious taste and healing properties. As a result, it became one of the most popular goods traded in many cultures, all the way up to the 1700s.


Cinnamon – What Is It?

history-of-cinnamon.jpg

Cinnamon comes from a tree, and the cinnamon we use is actually the bark. Commonly, cinnamon is sold as a ground powder. Here’s where it gets tricky, though. There are two different kinds – cassia cinamon and Ceylon cinnamon. In most circles, the cassia variety is referred to as “fake” cinnamon, and Ceylon is referred to as “true” cinnamon. (5) Cassia is the more common type of cinnamon, but Ceylon is the true kind.

The cinnamon commonly found in most supermarkets is likely the cassia variety. In fact, the “fake” cinnamon accounts for more than 90% of the cinnamon imported into the U.S. (6)


What Are the Health Benefits of Real Cinnamon?

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But before we get to the difference between the two, we need to discuss the benefits of using cinnamon in the first place. There are three elements in the essential oils of cinnamon, which make it a powerful spice. These elements are: cinnamyl alcohol, cinnamaldehyde, and cinnamyl acetate. (7) Cinnamyl alcohol is typically used in fragrances and cosmetic products, while cinnamyl acetate is used in products like hair conditioners and shampoos. All three of these elements are antifungal and antibacterial agents, and combine to make cinnamon a very potent, antioxidant-filled spice.

Anti-Clotting

One of the most important health benefits of cinnamon is its anti-clotting ability. This comes from cinnamaldehyde, and knowledge of this has been meticulously scientifically researched. (8) In a nutshell, cinnamaldehyde stops unwanted clumping of blood platelets. Put down your daily anticoagulant: cinamon contains cinnamaldehyde, which acts as a natural anti-clotting agent.

Blood platelets can clump together beneficially when circumstances warrant it – like when you accidentally cut your skin open, blood platelets clump together to stop the bleeding and create a scab. But day-to-day clumping is bad news, as clumping can lead to blood clots, which can be potentially fatal. The good news? Cinnamaldehyde helps to prevent excessive clumping of platelets by stopping the release of arachidonic acid, which is an inflammatory fatty acid.

Since cinnamon also performs cellular level activity, it is also classified as an anti-inflammatory food, since it stops the release of some inflammatory fatty acids, like arachidonic acid. (9)

Blood Sugar Control

One of the biggest benefits of consuming cinnamon is its ability to help regulate blood sugar. Interestingly, if you season a higher carbohydrate food with cinnamon, it can help ease the effect of the food on your blood sugar. (10)

I typically recommend clients use cinnamon to help with blood sugar issues, since diabetes may have a better insulin response when consuming cinnamon. Interestingly, studies have shown that compounds in cinnamon cause a response in insulin receptors and also stop an enzyme that blocks them, effectively making the body’s cells better able to use the sugar taken in via the food. (11)

Even in those who take in a lot of sugar (what we would refer to as a “high-fructose diet”), cinnamon still makes a difference. One scientific study showed that when given cinnamon, high sugar diets became almost comparable to normal diets. (12) Scientists conducting the study noted changes in mRNA coding, specifically for proteins related to memory, insulin sensitivity, and Alzheimer’s. This doesn’t mean to load up on the sugar, however! It just means that cinnamon could be used to help make a healthy diet even healthier.

Packed with Antioxidants and Helps Fight Fungal Infections

Cinnamon is also a very strong antioxidant. In fact, in some studies, cinnamon beats out chemical antioxidants and most other natural spices. (13) Cinnamon also helps stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungus. Depending on your level of expertise around fungus, you may already know cinnamon is potent, since it is very effective against the common candida yeast. (14)

May Improve Memory

As if the benefits of cinnamon weren’t already overwhelming, one scientific study found that cinnamon seemed to enhance cognitive processing! (15)

This amazing research found that multiple parts of the brain were enhanced, resulting in an overall better memory. However promising this research though, we must remember that this was only one small study. The benefits of cinnamon may be even greater – we simply do not have all the answers yet.


The Difference Between ‘Real’ and ‘Fake’ Cinnamon

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The two varieties, cassia and Ceylon, have somewhat comparable flavors. Cassia cinnamon isn’t quite as sweet as Ceylon cinnamon. Interestingly, the Ceylon (remember, that is the “real” cinnamon) is also harder to find in most supermarkets. Typically, you have to head to a specialty store to find the “true” cinnamon.

Now this is where things get interesting. The cassia (aka “fake”) cinnamon contains a very high amount of coumarin. (16) Coumarin is a flavoring substance, and it can be toxic. (17) The fake cinnamon typically contains over 1,000 times more coumarin compared with the real cinnamon. (18) Large amounts of coumarin, especially prolonged daily use, could potentially cause health problems (e.g., liver damage). (19)

But the differences don’t end there. Real cinnamon is more expensive, harder to find, and comes from a plant named cinnamomum zeylanicum. Real cinnamon is also light brown in color, and a little thinner and softer in appearance. Sticks of real cinnamon will be filled (picture a cigar) and have multiple layers. As mentioned, there will also be substantially less coumarin found in real cinnamon.

Perhaps most frustrating is that it is very hard to determine what type of cinnamon is found in a bottle or package. This leaves us with the choice of looking at cinnamon sticks and trying to pick between the real and the fake. Ceylon cinnamon can then be blended into a powder. Remember, the Ceylon sticks will be lighter and softer in appearance. If this option isn’t available for you, you can also purchase real, organic cinnamon online.


The Bottom Line

Scientific studies confirm that the benefits of real cinnamon are numerous. This includes, but is not limited to: antimicrobial and antiparasitic activity, lowering of blood glucose, antioxidant and free-radical scavenging properties, inhibition of tau aggregation and filament formation (hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease), anti-inflammatory activity, and wound healing properties. (20)

Note: Just because cinnamon is labeled Ceylon does not necessarily mean it is organic. If I’m going to choose a spice to maximize my health, I want to make sure I’m getting the full benefit – and you should too.

While it may require more work to obtain the real cinnamon, the benefits certainly outweigh the cons. Remember, if you need to find cinnamon in a store or online, make sure it is also organic – as the health benefits of organic, real cinnamon will be far, far greater than the non-organic variety.


We called it: 2019 is the year of the alt-meat. But while food innovation has gifted plant-based, vegan, and vegetarian eaters with an array of meat-like options (looking at you, “bleeding” burger patty), the OG sources of vegan protein—tempeh and tofu—have proven that they aren’t going anywhere. But in the battle of tempeh vs protein, who reigns supreme?

First things first: It’s abundantly clear that both protein sources have earned their staying power. Not only do they happen to taste delicious tossed on top of a salad/rice bowl/taco/literally anything, they’ve also got the health benefits to back up their good flavor. But while both meatless options are essentially super-versatile soy, there are key differences in texture, taste, and health benefits. Plus, according to an RD, tofu is the best alt-meat out there for plant-based beginners, while tempeh is the best for your gut. (TL,DR: Just because there are newer, shinier options out there, don’t count out everyone’s old favorites.)

Considering even meat-eaters could benefit from regularly eating plant-based meals (#MeatlessMonday, anyone?!), I asked plant-based specialist Lori Zanini, RD, CDE and author of the Diabetes Cookbook and Meal Plan for the Newly Diagnosed and Reema Kanda, RDN, at Hoag Orthopedic Institute, Irvine CA to break down health differences between the two vegan proteins that get the most love.

Below, Zanini and Kanda explain these two meatless faves and then answer which ultimately wins out in the plant-based protein battle of tempeh vs. tofu.

What is tempeh, exactly?

Tempeh is made from fermented soybeans that have been soaked, hulled, cooked, and then molded into a patty-like shape. Of course, there’s some variation in the shape the cooked soy beans get molded into, like tempeh sold in bacon-like strips.

While fermented soybeans are the main ingredient, tempeh often contains any or all of the following: quinoa, barley millet, flax seed, brown rice, sesame seeds and spices. This means sometimes tempeh is gluten-free, but other times it is notHave you ever been cheated on during the holiday season?; it ultimately comes down to the manufacturer. Most tempeh products wily either “gluten-free” or “contains wheat” on the package, so if you’re Celiac make sure to do your label-reading before adding it to your grocery cart.

The taste of tempeh is often described as “earthy,” “hearty,” or “nutty,” and when cooked, it’s a bit chewy. Tempeh is a little like mushroom lattes— you either love it or hate it.

how to cook tofu
Photo: Stocksy/ Trinette Reed

And what’s tofu?

“While both tofu and tempeh are high quality sources of plant-based protein and would make a great post-workout meal, they couldn’t be more different in their production process,” says Kanda. Tofu is also a soybean product, but while tempeh is made directly from cooking and fermenting soybeans, tofu is made from condensed, unfermented soy milk that’s been processed into solid white blocks.

It can be a little hard to visualize, so think about it this way: You know the pulp that’s left over when you make almond milk? Tofu is essentially made by combining this “pulp” with a thickening coagulant (and water). That’s why tofu is sometimes considered more processed than tempeh.

You can get tofu in a variety of textures such as “silky,” “firm,” and “soft,” but it usually has a Jell-O-like jiggle. And while tofu can be sold spiced, it’s generally flavorless. “Because tempeh has a heartier taste, some people prefer to use it as meat substitute. Tofu on the other hand has a more neutral flavor and absorbs the taste of the other ingredients or spices it’s combined with. It can be used in smoothies, stir-fries, soups…,” says Kanda, adding that it’s a good replacement for eggs in many dishes.

Tofu vs. tempeh: Which is healthier?

“Nutritionally, tofu and tempeh carry very similar nutrient profiles, and either would make a beneficial addition to a healthy breakfast or meal,” Zanini says, but she adds that they do have differences.  Nutritionally, here’s how it all breaks down based on one serving (aka 100 grams) of each protein.

Tofu:

  • Protein: 8 grams
  • Fat: 5 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 2 grams
  • Calories: 76

Tempeh:

  • Protein: 20 grams
  • Fat: 12 grams per 100g of cooked tempeh
  • Carbohydrates: 8 grams
  • Calories: 195

Generally, tempeh is higher in protein than tofu. “That’s because legumes, grains, nuts, and seeds may be used to make tempeh,” says Kanda—lending to a richer source of protein. If your goal is to incorporate more protein and healthy fats, tempeh may be the way to go.

Tempeh may have more calories and fat content, but Kanda says comparing two 100 gram servings is slightly misleading because 100 grams of tempeh will be more filling than 100 grams of tofu,  thanks to its high protein and fiber. You may have to eat more tofu to feel full because one serving is so low in calories, protein, and fat.

Micronutrients

Even in the nitty gritty nutrient-details, there aren’t a ton of differences between the two soy products. “Tofu contains 1 milligram of iron per serving and is a source of alpha-linolenic acid, the essential omega-3 fatty acid. Some brands of tofu are fortified with vitamin B12 and vitamin D, and extra calcium—of which there’s naturally a lot,” says Kanda.

Tempeh on the other hand, contains about 10 percent of your daily iron and calcium needs. Because tempeh is fermented, it can help your gut health and will keep you regular. Both tofu and tempeh contain magnesium, potassium, sodium and zinc.

Other factors, tastes, and uses

Aside from the nutritional information, there’s the whole question about whether or not soy is actually safe to eat. While some wellness practitioners advise their patients not to eat soy due to its “estrogen-like effects” in the body, the American Cancer Society says that consuming moderate amounts of soy foods is safe for everyone. Kanda follows the ACS guideline, and encourages her patients to eat soy in moderation and not every day.

Of course, since both tofu and tempeh can be part of a healthy diet, a lot of the decision comes down to what you’re craving and how you cook them. “Either option would be a great meat-substitute in any meal,” says Zanini. But when your shopping for tempeh aim for one that is as simple as possible. Flavored tempeh often has a lot of added sugar and salt. And of course, if you’re gluten-free check the label.

While tempeh has a heartier taste that makes it optimal as a meat-replacement, tofu is essentially flavorless which means it has more culinary uses. “Either way,” says Kanda, “both offer a great complete protein option for plant-eaters.”

Gabrielle Kassel, October 18, 2018

Nature has set it up so that the nut, grain, and seed may survive until proper growing conditions are present. Nature’s defense mechanism includes nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances that can be removed naturally when there is enough precipitation to sustain a new plant after the nut, grain or seed germinates. When it rains the nut, grain or seed gets wet and can then germinate to produce a plant. So we are mimicking nature when we soak our nuts, grains, and seeds.

Nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances found in nuts grains and seed can be minimized or eliminated by soaking. These inhibitors and toxic substances are enzyme inhibitors, phytates (phytic acid), polyphenols (tannins), and goitrogens.

What Are Enzyme Inhibitors?

There are digestive enzymes and metabolic enzymes. Digestive enzymes help break down food. Metabolic enzymes help every biological process the body does. Enzyme inhibitors will clog, warp or denature an active site of an enzyme. They may also bind to the enzyme, which will prevent the intended molecule from binding. “Once again, the habits of traditional peoples should serve as a guide. They understood instinctively that nuts are best soaked or partially sprouted before eaten. This is because nuts contain numerous enzyme inhibitors that can put a real strain on the digestive mechanism if consumed in excess.”

What Are Phytates?

All grains contain phytic acid in the outer layer or bran. Untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc in the intestinal tract and block their absorption. This is why a diet high in unfermented whole grains may lead to serious mineral deficiencies and bone loss. The modern misguided practice of consuming large amounts of unprocessed bran often improves colon transit time at first but may lead to irritable bowel syndrome and, in the long term, many other adverse effects.

Why Soak Nuts, Grains, And Seeds?

  • To remove or reduce phytic acid.
  • To remove or reduce tannins.
  • To neutralize the enzyme inhibitors.
  • To encourage the production of beneficial enzymes.
  • To increase the amounts of vitamins, especially B vitamins.
  • To break down gluten and make digestion easier.
  • To make the proteins more readily available for absorption.
  • To prevent mineral deficiencies and bone loss.
  • To help neutralize toxins in the colon and keep the colon clean.
  • To prevent many health diseases and conditions.

Soaking allows enzymes, lactobacilli, and other helpful organisms to break down and neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. Soaking in warm water also neutralizes enzyme inhibitors, present in all seeds, and encourages the production of numerous beneficial enzymes. The action of these enzymes also increases the amount of many vitamins, especially B vitamins. During the process of soaking and fermenting, gluten and other difficult-to-digest proteins are partially broken down into simpler components that are more readily available for absorption.

What Can Be Used To Soak Nuts, Grains, And Seeds?

I have found many references to soaking nuts, grains, and seeds in water, salt water, or a warm water mixture with something acidic like yogurt, whey or lemon juice. It seems within 7 to 24 hours the enzyme inhibitors are neutralized and the anti-nutrients are broken down regardless of the method you choose. There is evidence that the process works when you see sprouting begin.

How Long Does The Soaking Process Take?

As little as seven hours of soaking in warm acidulated water will neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. The simple practice of soaking cracked or rolled cereal grains overnight will vastly improve their nutritional benefits. Flour products should be soaked at room temperature for at least twelve hours, but better results may be obtained with a twenty-four-hour soaking.

Are The Nuts, Grains And Seeds Used Wet?

I have enjoyed almonds wet. If you choose to try consuming anything in the soaked state, make little batches and store them in the refrigerator. Usually, everything that is soaked is dried in a dehydrator or oven on the lowest possible setting for 24 – 48 hours to remove all moisture.

Wheat berries can be soaked whole for 8 to 22 hours, then drained and rinsed. Some recipes use the whole berries while they are wet, such as cracker dough ground right in the food processor. You can also dry sprouted wheat berries in a low-temperature oven or dehydrator, and then grind them in your grain mill and use the flour in a variety of recipes. Nuts, grains, seeds and legumes can be ground up to use as flour in many recipes after they have been dried.

Any Advice On What To Do With Legumes?

Maureen Diaz recommends soaking any beans or legumes in water and vinegar for at least twelve hours before cooking. Soaked and dried beans may be ground up and used as flour for thickening and baking. This is helpful for those on a gluten-free diet.

One recommendation includes placing soaked kombu or kelp seaweed in the bottom of the pot when soaking legumes. Add one part seaweed to six or more parts legumes. This is for improved flavor and digestion, more nutrients, and faster cooking. Soak legumes for twelve hours or overnight in four parts water to one part legume. For best results, change the water once or twice. Lentils and whole dried peas require shorter soaking while soybeans and garbanzos need to soak longer. Soaking softens skins and begins the sprouting process, which eliminates phytic acid, thereby making more minerals available. Soaking also promotes faster cooking and improved digestibility, because the gas-causing enzymes and trisaccharides in legumes are released into the soak water. Be sure to discard the soak water. After bringing legumes to a boil, scoop off and discard foam. Continue to boil for twenty minutes without the lid at beginning of cooking to let steam rise (breaks up and disperses indigestible enzymes). 

Are You Soaking Your Nuts, Seeds, Grains, And Legumes? 

If you’ve looked into the trendy diets of today, you’ve probably come across at least one diet that focuses on getting enough protein and minimizing carbohydrates. The truth is that there are many high protein and low carbohydrate diets that have been trendy over the last few decades. Today’s ketogenic diet is just one of the latest iterations of the high protein, low carb diet trend that started in the 1970s. While some benefits can be gained from any diet that eliminates processed foods like candy, cake, cookies, and fried food, there is only so far a high protein, low carb diet can take you when it comes to healing your body. In truth, this way of eating is as misinformed—and nearly as harmful—as it was when it started decades ago. I know you might have read or heard that high protein and low carbohydrate diets are beneficial, but today I will share why they are problematic, especially for someone with a chronic health condition or symptom.

Following a keto diet is damaging for your body and brain whether you eat an animal-based keto diet or a plant-based keto diet. Some people experience temporary relief or weight loss on a keto diet, but it’s important to understand that these improvements are short-lived. Especially if you suffer from chronic illness, autoimmune disease, neurological conditions or mysterious symptoms, you’ll want to run the other way from anything close to the keto diet.

For a full understanding of what your body really needs for healing and long-term health, check out Liver Rescue: Answers to Eczema, Psoriasis, Diabetes, Strep, Acne, Gout, Bloating, Gallstones, Adrenal Stress, Fatigue, Fatty Liver, Weight Issues, SIBO & Autoimmune Disease.

Inherently Flawed

The entire premise of the keto diet is incorrect to begin with. The diet involves restricting carbohydrate intake while focusing on high protein and fat intake. The theory is that this way of eating causes your body to go into a metabolic state called ketosis, where you efficiently burn fat as an energy source for your body and brain.

The reality is, it’s not possible for your body to go into ketosis if you’re eating any amount or form of sugar whatsoever, including the natural sugars found in most foods. That means anyone eating even a tiny bit of nuts, seeds, avocado, cheese, butter, tomato, or green juices is taking in natural sugar. Unless someone is eating only bacon three times a day (in which case they’d feel terrible and cause even more damage for themselves down the road), they’re not entering ketosis.

The idea that your body can switch to burning fat as fuel is also flawed. We don’t run on fat. We run on glucose, which is sugar. If it were true that our bodies could flip from burning glucose for energy to burning fat for energy, as the keto diet suggests, then it would be impossible for someone who was overweight or obese to starve. If the ketosis theory is correct, you could take away an overweight person’s food completely and they’d continue to live for a long period of time, using their fat as energy. But that’s not how it works. Fat does not convert to usable material for our bodies.

Anyone of any weight can starve or be malnourished without the glucose and nutrition their body needs, that is, without the glucose and nutrients that are bountiful in carbohydrates such as fruits and starchy vegetables, and without the nutrients found in leafy greens and herbs. These are what I call the CCCs, which stands for Critical Clean Carbohydrates. I detail why these foods are necessary, helpful and healing in Liver Rescue and share how dozens of the foods in the CCC category bring healing to the body.

The Old Roots of High Protein, Low Carb Diets

To everyone’s detriment, the world has become anti-sugar and anti-carbohydrate. Shunning fruits and starchy vegetables is taking away people’s ability to heal. How did we get here? The answer requires a quick history lesson and an open mind. In the early 1930s, the meat packing industry and the government joined forces to promote protein. Around this time, instead of going to the farmer and the butcher shop for meat, animal products were becoming industrialized. They were made cheap and available in mass. They were promoted as critical. Monetary interests were put ahead of people’s health.

The idea that protein is more important than anything else was pushed by the partnership of industry and government. This belief was indoctrinated into the conventional medical model and taught in grammar schools. It got drilled into everyone’s thinking and consciousness (and has remained there in the decades since).

Before this colluding effort to push protein, health practitioners were not focused on protein and meat. Protein wasn’t the top choice to sustain people. Alternative practitioners and healers especially believed in fruits, leafy greens, vegetables, herbs, potatoes, nuts and seeds. And although they weren’t focused on protein, the reality is there’s some protein in everything you eat. It’s in spinach, it’s in berries, it’s in bananas. It’s everywhere. Nonetheless, the baseless but calculated decisions to promote heavy protein intake continue to influence and confuse our thinking today. For more on this topic and how we have been misled, check out my podcast and article on The Truth About Protein.

Taking Aim at Fats…and Missing

People who are in the health industry have always been in search of the best diet. In the 1970s, doctors were seeing the rise of heart disease, high blood pressure, liver disease, cholesterol and diabetes. People were cutting out fast food, processed food and greasy foods, yet they still were experiencing all kinds of symptoms and conditions. In the 70s, doctors and the medical system had correctly recognized that too much fat, too many animal products and too much red meat was contributing to disease.

All that fat intake leads to higher fat content in the blood, which leads to a lack of oxygen in the blood. Over time, diminished oxygen levels getting to the heart and brain contributes to problems like strokes and heart attacks. Too much fat in the bloodstream also triggers the adrenal glands to shoot off adrenaline as it tries to clean up your blood to protect you.

Unfortunately, the realization that fat was harmful to our health didn’t translate into an effective response. Instead, grocery shelves filled up with low-fat and fat-free products (which often contained unhealthy, processed ingredients or trans fats). People began eliminating fats that actually had healthy properties, such as coconut oil, avocado, nuts, seeds and olives. And on top of that, people continued to eat lots of animal protein. People didn’t realize that animal protein translates into animal fat, which means they were still eating high fat diets even if they thought they had a “lean cut.” They were still consuming way too much fat—and often even worse types of fat than before—on their low fat diets.

With this flawed approach, any progress that could have been made fell apart. Health professionals realized the low fat diet trend wasn’t working. Eventually, the only thing left to do (because protein remained untouchable due to the agenda and money behind it) was to go after carbohydrates. That was the birth of the keto diet.

Since then, it’s been one version after another of a trendy low carb, high protein diet. The same concept has been repackaged into different names over the decades with just a slight twist to market it as its own unique diet program. One thing that has altered slightly is today’s high protein diets have a little more carbohydrates. Modern versions allow in some leafy greens, a bit of avocado, or a few berries and nuts. That’s because the older versions that allowed none of these healing foods destroyed people’s health. Our bodies and brains need the nutrients, antioxidants, phytochemicals, vitamins and minerals that are packed into leafy greens, fruits, berries, vegetables, coconut water and raw honey. Sprinkling these healing foods into today’s high protein, low carb trends makes these diets a little less harmful.

Why Keto Can (Sort of) Work (Temporarily, Sometimes)

When people commit to almost any diet, including a high protein, low carb diet like keto, they get off all the worst of the worst foods. They eliminate fast food, greasy food, processed foods and refined sugar. They clean some things up and eliminate some toxins, which offers their bodies a bit of reprieve.

The true cause of most chronic health conditions and symptoms, including weight gain, are what I call troublemakers. In Liver Rescue I explain more about these troublemakers: viruses, bacteria, toxic heavy metals and man-made chemicals. All of these have been prolific since the Industrial Revolution, and they’re making people sicker than ever at younger and younger ages. Your liver works incredibly hard to capture and filter out troublemakers, but it’s got a big job to do.

Diets that are high in fat and protein are a huge burden to a liver that’s already working overtime to deal with toxins. And think about how fat and sugar usually go together: doughnuts, cakes and cookies; pasta with butter; Asian food with sesame oil or peanut oil; fatty ribs with BBQ sauce; even peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. People don’t consume a lot of sugar alone. Nobody’s on an all-candy diet. Yet sugar has become the scapegoat for health problems in recent years while the fat that goes hand in hand with it is overlooked.

Instead of just removing the unhealthy, refined sugars, the fear went too far and people became afraid of the healthy natural sugars in fruits and starchy vegetables. Now people are taking all sugars out and keeping fats and protein high. Certainly people see some relief upon taking out refined sugar because that’s one troublemaker to the body. For instance, when people remove sugars they’ll see A1C levels might drop or diabetes and prediabetes improve. But it doesn’t fix the problem altogether.

Too much fat in the blood is a big problem. When there’s too much fat in the blood, the body tries to get rid of the sugar. It tries to move sugar into the cells because your cells need sugar to survive. But it can’t accomplish this well because the fat blocks the sugar from entering the cells. So then your body produces more insulin and you end up with insulin resistance. The sugar gets trapped in the bloodstream, insulin resistance begins, A1C levels go up and the liver becomes more sluggish.

So that improvement seen when someone removes sugar is a smoke screen to the real problem. The minute they bring any sugar back, their problems return. That’s because sugar was never the problem in the first place. The real issue for chronic illness, diabetes, blood sugar issues and weight gain is a sluggish, fatty, tired liver that’s overloaded with pathogens and toxins. I explain exactly how diabetes, blood sugar issues, weight gain, and many more symptoms and conditions develop and how these troublemakers are at the root of chronic illness and autoimmune disease in Liver Rescue, along with guidance on how to heal.

Another Keto Downfall: Intermittent Fasting

People tend to do intermittent fasting when they’re on a keto diet. This is because they feel better. They feel better because eating fat and protein all day eventually makes you feel terrible, like you’re falling apart. With all that fat clogging the bloodstream and reducing the blood’s oxygen levels, your organs and cells can’t get the oxygen they need. Fasting offers a reprieve compared to the alternative of eating more fat and protein. So people often fast, filling their depleted energy levels with caffeine and coffee and chocolate to get through the day.

Of course, this is harmful too. Dumping caffeine into the body floods your system with adrenaline. Adrenaline is corrosive, and it’s another thing your liver has to sop up and try to filter out. Down the road, people who are eating lots of fat, and caffeine in the meantime, will sadly find themselves getting sicker and sicker.

If someone does temporarily feel better eating an animal-based keto diet with multiple meals a day, then aside from the removal of the processed foods they may have been eating, it will be because of the adrenaline naturally found in the animal foods they are eating which can make someone temporarily feel better. But this isn’t a true healing that’s happening, but a mask to how they’d really feel without that adrenaline. Eventually, the person will start to feel worse and worse.

Sustained Healing That Works

Now that you know the truth about the keto diet and high protein, low carb diets in general, it’s important to educate yourself on what your body really needs to heal and thrive. That’s what I cover in detail in all of the Medical Medium book series. In Liver Rescue I lay out exactly how you can heal and move forward. You may not think you have any issues with your liver, but the truth is that nine out of ten people right now have an overburdened liver to some degree and if you have any symptom or condition, such as acne, eczema, migraines, cold sores, fatigue, vision problems, digestive issues, or any other, it means your liver needs your help. Dig in to Liver Rescue: Answers to Eczema, Psoriasis, Diabetes, Strep, Acne, Gout, Bloating, Gallstones, Adrenal Stress, Fatigue, Fatty Liver, Weight Issues, SIBO & Autoimmune Disease and Medical Medium Celery Juice: The Most Powerful Medicine of Our Time Healing Millions Worldwide to properly understand how you can support your body to heal.
Anthony William, Inc.

Yes, it is true. The fewer calories you consume, the healthier you are and the longer you will live. Calorie Reduction (CR) is the most strategic approach to health and longevity there is. I feel vibrant, twenty years younger, my mind is crystal clear and I sleep a full eight hours every night.

Observe the “Blue Zones” (Sardinia, Italy, Okinawa, Japan, Loma Linda, California, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica, Ikaria, Greece), these people thrive into their 90’s and 100’s… They all have one strong attribute – they do not consume a lot of food. Yes, of course, they walk a lot, passionate about their work, they have a strong family bond, they participate in community activities, they grow their own food and don’t watch CNN or have Donald Trump as their president… They eat mostly vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, seeds, and nuts.

In the five “Blue Zones” the people live longer than anywhere else in the world… All of these people who live in their 90’s and 100’s eat mostly a vegan diet of beans, grains, seeds, nuts, fruits, and vegetables… They do not over-exercise, they walk and do their own chores, they are passionate about something whether it is painting, writing or playing an instrument, they have faith whether it is of God, mankind or the sun, they have something to look forward to every day, they surround themselves with family and friends and they don’t worry about stuff.. They don’t have smartphones or are they on Facebook for hours at a time and they certainly do not watch cable television… They are plugged into life…

I have been on a CR lifestyle diet for a year. I have cut all my portions by two thirds. I have noticed that I am not hungry, my stomach seems to have shrunk, I only consume food when I am really hungry and I eat very slowly and chew my food longer than normal. I choose my foods strategically. I only eat highly nutritional food, fresh locally grown and has a lot of fiber and tons of nutrients.

This morning, for example, I had one large Stokes purple sweet potato and two cups of chickpea miso with lemon. For lunch, I will have half of butternut squash. For dinner, I always eat before 4:00, I will have a half cup of lentils mixed with quinoa, amaranth, and millet… In between meals I drink a lot of gunpowder tea, Kukicha tea and a blend of herbal tea I make with dry, wild or organic Red Clover blossoms; dry, wild or organic, dry sifted Alfalfa, Stinging Nettle leaf; dry wild or organic Yarrow flowers. Tea has no calories, tons of antioxidants and vitamins and is very filling…

Now, if I find myself nervously hungry, I eat raw carrots, celery, radishes, cauliflower, and an apple… These foods are not only extremely healthy, but they are also loaded with fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants. These are called guiltless foods.

Socially, I do not have a problem. Everyone knows that I am vegan and do not like to be fussed over. When I go to dinner with people I am famous for ordering a plate of parsley or raw spinach with lemon. I never drink alcohol, probably the worst thing you can bombard your liver with… I also never use oils. Oils are pure fat and highly processed. Fat is important as oil, but consume oil in the most natural state. Eat olives, nuts, avocados, chia and hemp seeds and make sure to put flaxseeds on all of your food – loaded with Omega-rich nutrients.

It is important to eat your largest meal in the morning followed later in the afternoon by a smaller meal… Eat nothing after 4:00 p.m. The American diet is three humungous meals loaded with fat, sugar, dairy4, and meat. The largest meal consumed by Americans is late at night. Most people literally pass out after eating a huge meal of meat and potatoes drenched in butter and cream along with beer and wine. You can imagine what that does to your heart and liver. It is no surprise that Americans develop more heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity than all the rest of the industrial modern countries combined…

80% of all Americans adults and 1/3rd of all American children are clinically obese. Obesity is the number one link to all major human diseases and early death. Go to the supermarkets and just observe the foods people loaded the carts with – boxes of sugary cereals, cans of processed soups and boxes of frozen pizzas and dinners. The government should give tax breaks to those people that eat a clean plant-based diet and tax people heavily for eating processed foods, meat, and dairy. Why should people like you and me be burdened with high healthcare for people that do not take care of themselves?

There are other factors to the longevity equation. Exercise is vital. But do not knock yourself out or think of exercise as a chore. Incorporate moving your body with activities you love to do like cycling, walking, yoga, basketball, gardening, and tennis. Mediation is a powerful tool to increase mental awareness, reduce stress, encourage a healthy body, slows aging and benefit cardiovascular and immune health… You don’t have to be a Hindu Guru to mediate. I meditate when I walk, take a sauna, lay in my bed and focus on the night and the morning. I also paint and find myself engrossed in my art.

Another extremely important part of the equation of longevity is to surround yourself with happiness and peace. Sever relationships that drag you down no matter who the people are. Find a job that you are excited about and look forward to engaging in. Rid your home of clutter, keep your home simple and live a minimalist lifestyle. I have a very good friend that is Hindu and Jitendra only has three pairs of pants, three shirts and one pair of shoes. I asked him why he doesn’t have more clothes? He told me that he only wears one pair of pants and a shirt and one pair of shoes at a time… That made so much sense to me. I immediately reduced the closets of clothes that I had, many still had their price tags and many I haven’t worn for years. I also got rid of a lot of furniture, everything in the garage and the cupboards in my kitchen that I never use.

Severing relationships, giving away a lot of my possessions, reducing my wardrobe and the furniture in my home was the most powerful emotional revelation I ever experienced. Reducing my diet to a bare minimum amount of food allows me to focus on my passions in life rather than to be the gatekeeper of too many clothes, furniture, and stuff.

I attest to never feeling tired, always having tons of energy, my mind has more clarity than any time in my life, I feel younger, happier and freer than at any time in my life. I also spend as little as $20 a week on food. I am not all the way there yet, trust me.

A while ago I met a man with just a backpack, nothing else. he traveled around the world and stayed at youth hostels… After I got to know him, I found out that he was quite wealthy. I asked him about all his homes, cars and lifestyle. He told me that he felt like a prisoner, all of those material things were like a weight around his neck. He told me that he gave away all the money to charity. He didn’t want to burden his kids with the same strain and stress that inflicted him. He also wanted his children to experience the joy of success and achieving their own journey rather than his… He loved to be among the people and avoided 5-star hotels like the plague…

Pablo Picasso said, “I’d like to live as a poor man with lots of money.”

The best diet you can possibly eat is a poor man’s diet – You will live healthy for decades… This is my favorite meal – sweet potato, black beans, brown rice, and an avocado… No salt or oil or seasoning, just simply the healthiest most wonderful tasting combination of food on the planet… The cost is under $5

Life is a journey of sharing, experiencing and enjoying other people. Learning from people of different cultures is the most valuable opportunity we have in life. Life is a gift, just unwrap it carefully…

Thank you so much Doug for the Info …

High blood pressure, also known as “hypertension,” is the number one reason people visit their doctor in the United States. Each year, more than 100 million doctor visits are made for medical management of this condition.

High blood pressure is both a sign, as well as a causal factor, in heart attacks, strokes, and congestive heart failure, which makes it the leading associated cause of death and disability in westernized societies.

Medical doctors overwhelmingly recommend drug therapy for this condition, making blood pressure drugs the number one prescription medication in this country.

But is drug therapy the best approach? And, is it safe?

There are many popular medical myths about high blood pressure. For example, many physicians believe that high blood pressure is an “inevitable consequence of aging;” that the “only viable treatment option for high blood pressure patients is medication”; that high blood pressure patients must take their medications “for the rest of their lives”; and, worst of all, that high blood pressure medications are “safe and effective.”

Why Drugs Are Not the Only Option for Treating High Blood Pressure

This article will show that drug treatment is not the only viable treatment option, and that drug treatment is disturbingly dangerous. In fact, studies strongly suggest that for the majority of patients with high blood pressure, medications may be more dangerous than doing nothing at all.

Fortunately, powerful diet and lifestyle treatment options exist that safely and effectively reduce high blood pressure. But don’t assume that your doctor will tell you about them because many doctors are simply unaware of the facts.

“Powerful diet and lifestyle treatment options exist that safely and effectively reduce high blood pressure.”

Before exploring how to safely treat this condition, let’s look at what high blood pressure is and seek to understand why it is our nation’s number one public health concern.

In doing so, it will become clear why medical management is generally so ineffective and why a safer, more effective approach — one that takes advantage of the human body’s built-in healing mechanisms — is often the best choice.

What Is Blood Pressure?

taking blood pressure

Although high blood pressure does not cause any pain and cannot be detected without a special device, it is clearly a serious health problem worthy of your rapt attention.

But what is “blood pressure,” and what can cause it to become “high”?

If you have ever been in a hot tub with the “jets” on, you have observed a circulating system. When the pump is “on,” the water circulates from the hot tub, through pipes, into a pump, and then back to the hot tub. In this way, the water can be put through a filter to remove impurities and be re-utilized again and again. A hot tub with its pump “on” is a simple circulatory system. When the pump is “off,” the water stops circulating and stays wherever it is in the system.

Your circulatory system is very much like the hot tub’s. Your blood is like the water. Your heart is like the pump, and your blood vessels are like the pipes. Your heart pumps your blood through the circulatory system in order to feed oxygen and nutrients to cells throughout your body, and to remove waste products. By circulating through the system, your blood is filtered and re-utilized, again and again.

In a hot tub, as the water comes through the pipes, it has a degree of force. This force is caused by the action of the pump, which puts energy into the circulating system and forces the water through the pipes. When the pump is off, there still may be water in the pipes, but there is no force. The degree of force in the system when the pump is on can be gauged in several ways, such as by putting your hand in front of a “jet.” Another way would be to have a device to measure the amount of force that the water exerts against the walls of the pipes as it circulates. Such a device might yield a numerical measurement of the force, or pressure, of the water within the pipes.

Similarly, your blood exerts a force against the walls of your blood vessels as it circulates through your body. The degree of this force is called your “blood pressure,” and it can be measured with a blood pressure monitoring device.

Unlike the water pressure in the hot tub, however, human blood pressure is highly variable. In the hot tub, the water ejected by the jets comes in a steady, pressurized stream. But in the human circulatory system, blood pressure varies dramatically from one moment to the next.

Unlike the smooth action of the hot tub pump, the human heart expands and contracts mightily each second or so, causing your blood pressure to be comparatively high one moment, and comparatively low in the next. That is why we need two measurements when checking your blood pressure: one at the moment when the pressure is highest (your systolic blood pressure), and one a moment later, when the pressure is lowest (your diastolic blood pressure).

Your systolic blood pressure is always higher than your diastolic blood pressure and is always the “top” number when your pressure is reported.

If your doctor tells you that your blood pressure is “120 over 80,” this means that your systolic blood pressure was measured at “120,” and your diastolic was at “80.” Both your systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements are important because they indicate how well your circulatory system is working.

If either of these measurements is unusually high, this warrants your serious attention. Because, as previously mentioned, elevated blood pressure may be not only a sign of cardiovascular disease, it is a cause of disease, as well.

What Does It Mean to Have High Blood Pressure?

There are really no cut-and-dried definitions for high blood pressure.

Researchers have used several different criteria to determine at what level a person’s blood pressure should be considered “high.” One very useful criterion is the concept that blood pressure is “high” when it reaches a level that corresponds to significantly elevated risk for heart attack, stroke, or congestive heart failure.

One misguided criterion is the idea that blood pressure is “high” only when it reaches a level that can be effectively assisted by drug therapy.

Over the years, these and other criteria have been bandied about, with the final result being a set of definitions that are not based upon any specific criteria but are still useful for communication purposes.

Your blood pressure is said to be “high” when either your systolic blood pressure is 140 or above, or your diastolic blood pressure is 90 or above, or both. So if your blood pressure is found to be 142/88 (systolic = 142, diastolic = 88), you are diagnosed as having high blood pressure, according to current definitions. The same would be true if your blood pressure was found to be 135/92, or 152/95. In each case, either the systolic is high, or the diastolic is high, or both. Any of these findings result in a diagnosis of high blood pressure.

Most people who are diagnosed with high blood pressure have what is referred to as “mild” high blood pressure. This means that their systolic blood pressure is between 140-159, and/or their diastolic blood pressure is between 90-99.

Only when blood pressures are above 160/100 is a patient considered to have “moderate” blood pressure, and, at even higher levels, “severe.” These definitions can be quite misleading and are undoubtedly leading to many entirely preventable tragedies.

Deadly Definitions: Why “Normal” Blood Pressures Can Still Be Dangerous

What is considered “normal” is often pathological. For example, if a person has blood pressure of 136/88, it is considered “normal,” or perhaps “high normal,” since it is below the arbitrary 140/90 numbers. But such an individual has five times the risk of stroke of a person with blood pressure at 110/70!

In fact, one-third of the people who die of heart attacks, strokes, and congestive heart failure have blood pressures that are below 140/90.

The current definitions of “normal” or “high normal” blood pressure may give patients a false sense of security that may very well cost them their lives. Per current classification, even a person whose blood pressure has risen to 156/98 is considered to have only “mild” high blood pressure. Yet, this level is much more dangerous than even 136/88.

Sadly, most people who die of heart attacks, strokes, and congestive heart failure have blood pressure described as either “normal” or “mildly high.”

Problems with Drugs: When Should Blood Pressure Drugs Be Prescribed?

The current convention of diagnosing blood pressure as “high” beginning at 140/90 has created another set of problems.

Most doctors have been taught that once a diagnosis of “high blood pressure” has been made, blood pressure medication is the treatment of choice. As a result, many physicians believe that the current definition of “high” blood pressure is also the same level of blood pressure at which drug treatments are worthwhile. Unfortunately, this is not the case.

In multiple studies conducted by world leaders in high blood pressure research, drug treatments have been found to be surprisingly ineffective.

In fact, there is no clear evidence that drug therapy reduces the risk of death in patients with “mild” high blood pressure, which is the majority of diagnosed patients!

In summarizing the results of one of the largest clinical trials ever conducted, performed by the prestigious British Medical Research Council, it was reported that for mildly hypertensive patients, “…Active (drug) treatment had no evident effect on the overall cause of mortality….”

In a subsequent review of the entire scientific literature, the British Medical Journal concluded that there is “no appreciable benefit to an individual patient from treating (with drugs) a diastolic pressure of less than 100….”

What these scientists found was that while drug treatments for mild hypertension may be effective at lowering blood pressure, they were not effective in reducing overall mortality. Put more bluntly, hypertension patients in these studies died at about the same rate whether they took medication or not. These findings reaffirm an important health principle: Treating the symptoms of disease is not the same thing as causing health.

It also would appear that the dangerous “side effects” of high blood pressure drugs are sufficiently substantial to obliterate any positive effects of reducing mild high blood pressure in this artificial manner.

In fact, the side effects of medications are sufficiently toxic that leading medical authorities suggest that medications only become worth the risks when blood pressure becomes “moderately to severely elevated” (160/100 or above).

Typical side effects of high blood pressure medications range from mildly unpleasant to lethal. These include fatigue, gastric irritation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, impotence, depression, and congestive heart failure.

Don’t assume that your doctor is aware of these facts. If you are diagnosed with mild, high blood pressure, you likely will be prescribed medication, instructed that it is helpful, and told that you must take it for the rest of your life. But before accepting this potentially dangerous treatment, it may be to your advantage to seek answers to the following questions: “What caused my high blood pressure?” and “Can I remove those causes and reverse this condition?”

What Causes High Blood Pressure?

Think back for a moment to the circulatory system in a hot tub. When the system is working as designed, there is a certain level of water pressure in the system.

However, we could arrange things that would increase this level of pressure. One way would be to partially clog the pipes. In this way, the pressure in the whole system would rise, just as the water pressure in your garden hose rises when you put your finger over the spout and impede the flow.

In the human circulatory system, it also is possible to “clog the pipes.” By consuming a diet that is excessive in fats, cholesterol, and animal proteins, it is possible to develop atherosclerosis, a condition of fatty deposits in the cardiovascular system.
Editor’s Note: Considerable controversy exists about whether fat or cholesterol are, per se, drivers of atherosclerosis. They are implicated in some studies, while others indicate that quality of fat, and placement in a wider dietary pattern, may be more significant to ultimate impact. What seems clear, however, is that a diet high in animal products, sugar, and processed foods is often a recipe for high blood pressure and heart disease.

Success of various approaches to the reduction of systolic blood pressure

Over time, people can build up such significant deposits that their “pipes” are clogged up, to some degree. This is one of the main causes of high blood pressure and is one reason why high blood pressure tends to become more prevalent as people age.

But this condition is not inevitable. More encouraging still is the finding, by Dr. Dean Ornish and others, that this condition is reversible with dietary and lifestyle modifications, the first step of which is to adopt a plant-based diet derived from whole, natural foods.

While “clogging the pipes” is a major cause of high blood pressure, there are other causes, as well. A second major factor is that excessive dietary salt causes there to be too much fluid in the circulatory system.

Consider once again the analogy of the garden hose. If you turn on the water “harder,” there is more pressure in the hose. Excessive salt in the diet can result in excessive fluid volume in the blood, which results in elevated blood pressure. This cause, too, is reversible, as a plant-based diet of whole, natural foods, devoid of added salt, is naturally low in sodium chloride.

We can see that two major causes of high blood pressure: atherosclerosis and excessive fluid in the circulatory system, are reversible, given dietary modifications.

Such modifications directly address the causes of high blood pressure and thus might be expected to be quite effective. The curious reader might wish to know just how effective such dietary modifications are, as compared to the drug treatments offered by most doctors.

A summary of results from a variety of studies on diet and lifestyle modifications, as compared with drug treatment, appears in Figure 1.

Impressive Ways to Lower Blood Pressure Naturally

food and blood pressure

As you can see in Figure 1, dietary and lifestyle modifications are very impressive as compared with drug treatment.

In a study conducted by Dr. John McDougall and his colleagues, a program utilizing a moderately low-sodium, vegetarian diet with moderate exercise resulted in an average blood pressure reduction of 17/13 in just eleven days!

This is particularly striking when we compare these results with medications, which have been found to reduce blood pressure only about 12/6 points, on average. This should be encouraging for those who have been told that they must take blood pressure medication for the rest of their lives.

It is notable that relaxation and meditation, though useful for many purposes, have not been found to impact high blood pressure. Many people find this surprising, possibly since high blood pressure also is known as “hypertension.” Because of this potentially misleading term, many people have assumed that high levels of stress or “tension” are a major cause of “hypertension,” or high blood pressure. This is not the case. High blood pressure is an essentially mechanical, and not psychological, problem.

The causes are most often some combination of clogged “pipes” and excessive salt in the diet. Lifestyle changes, such as appropriate diet and exercise, are among the most effective treatment strategies for high blood pressure. Relaxation, meditation, and otherwise “taking it easy” are not effective solutions, as valuable as such strategies may be for your psychological well-being.

As you examine Figure 1, you may observe that the real key to the treatment of high blood pressure is to practice a diversity of health-promoting behaviors.

By avoiding alcohol use, stopping smoking, switching to a high-fiber, low-sodium, vegan-vegetarian diet, and engaging in moderate, regular exercise, the problem of high blood pressure usually will eliminate itself.

However, as alluded to at the beginning of this article, high blood pressure is not only a sign of distress in your cardiovascular system but also a cause.

If your blood pressure is elevated above what is normal and healthy for our species, the pressure itself causes damage to arterial walls of your circulatory system, which can facilitate the build-up of atherosclerosis and, thus, exacerbate the high blood pressure condition itself.

For this reason, it can be useful to reduce high blood pressure as quickly as possible, rather than to patiently wait for the often-moderate healing pace of healthful lifestyle changes.

“The real key to the treatment of high blood pressure is to practice a diversity of health-promoting behaviors.”

Is There A Way to Lower Blood Pressure Quickly?

Is there a safe and effective way to rapidly normalize blood pressure?

Indeed there is, and the results of this method represent nothing less than a breakthrough in the treatment of this condition. The power of this method is hinted at in Figure 1, the method referred to as Treatment F.

As you can see from Figure 1, there is one treatment option that significantly outperforms all others, labeled Treatment F.

Treatment F is not a new drug treatment. Neither is it a new, expensive, and patented dietary supplement. It is supervised, water-only fasting, a technique that allows for the induction of a potent, natural, adaptive, healing process in a professionally monitored environment.

This technique is known to surprisingly few health professionals, though it has proved valuable in the treatment of a wide variety of health problems. Recently, this powerful technique has been shown to be an extremely effective method for allowing the body to rapidly normalize high blood pressure more effectively than any other treatment reported in the scientific literature.

It may seem incredible to many that supervised water-only fasting can obtain such impressive results. In fact, most people, including most doctors, simply will not believe that such a simple procedure can be so powerful. Few suspect that the body is so capable of healing itself in this way.

For this reason, Dr. Alan Goldhamer and his colleagues at the Center for Conservative Therapy set out to carefully document the effectiveness of supervised water-only fasting and to report the results to the scientific community in a way that other doctors might find convincing. To assist him in this task, Dr. Goldhamer and his research staff at the Center sought the help of one of the world’s leading nutritional biochemists, Professor T. Colin Campbell of Cornell University.

Fortunately, Dr. Campbell and his statistical expert, Dr. Banoo Parpia, were enthusiastic about joining the research effort. This collaboration has resulted in one of the most remarkable studies in the treatment of hypertension ever conducted.

The Evidence Says: Water Fasting Is An Effective Way to Normalize Blood Pressure Rapidly

In the study, funded in part by a grant from the National Health Association, it was discovered that by having patients consume nothing but pure water in a supervised environment of complete rest, blood pressures rapidly normalized.

In fact, many patients who began their fasts while on high blood pressure drugs were required to quickly discontinue their medications, so that their blood pressures would not drop artificially low!

Over a 12-year period, 174 patients diagnosed with mild to severe high blood pressure were seen at the Center for Conservative Therapy and were placed on a medically-supervised, water-only fasting regime. The treatment procedure included an average water-only fasting period of 10.6 days, followed by a supervised refeeding period of about one week with a whole, natural foods diet. The results of the study are summarized in Figure 2.

Effect of fasting on reducing systolic blood pressure of various severities

In the final analysis, this safe and simple procedure demonstrated extraordinary effectiveness. By the end of their stay, all patients were able to discontinue their medications, no matter how severe their initial condition.

In fact, a review of Figure 2 indicates that the most impressive results were observed with the most serious cases. In cases of “moderate” to “severe” hypertension (blood pressures of 174/93 or greater), the average reduction at the conclusion of treatment was a remarkable 46/15! For these cases, which medical practitioners generally would insist need lifetime medical intervention, the average exit blood pressure was 128/78, using no medication whatsoever!

The reasons for this astonishing success are not yet entirely understood. Certainly, two of the major causes of high blood pressure are being addressed: excessive dietary salt is completely eliminated, and it is likely that some patients experience some reversal of the atherosclerosis process. However, Dr. Campbell has suggested that additional mechanisms may be partly responsible for fasting’s remarkable effects, such as the rapid reduction of a phenomenon known as “insulin resistance.”

Though the details are incompletely understood, the clinical results are clear and convincing. Water-only fasting represents an astonishing breakthrough in the treatment of high blood pressure, with the only “side effects” being that people lose weight and feel great.

Note: The fasting and high blood pressure study described in this article was funded in part by a grant from the National Health Association. It was conducted at the Center for Conservative Therapy in Penngrove, California. The results appeared in the article, “Medically Supervised Water-Only Fasting in the Treatment of Hypertension,” published in June 2001 in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics.

For the Rest of Your Life

Contrary to what many people have been led to believe, high blood pressure is not a condition that requires patients to take drugs for the rest of their lives.

If you suffer from this silent but serious condition, start taking effective actions today. As described above, there are many things that you can do to assist your body in regaining a healthy level of blood pressure.

The first thing to do is to adopt a diet consisting of whole, natural foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and legumes, and the variable addition of nuts and seeds. Remember, the optimal diet excludes any added salt, since it is a particularly troubling component of the high blood pressure problem.

In addition, this diet has been shown to aid in the reversal of atherosclerosis, and in weight reduction. Other important factors that will help to normalize blood pressure include regular exercise and the elimination of alcohol and tobacco. When followed diligently, such a combined strategy is likely to be very effective.

For those who wish to address their high blood pressure problem quickly, powerfully, and safely, supervised water-only fasting has been shown to be a safe and effective tool for the rapid normalization of blood pressure.

Follow-up data from the Center for Conservative Therapy study has shown that after several months, patients who adhere to a healthful dietary regimen are able to sustain their improvements.

In addition, water-only fasting is a useful method for helping people to re-educate their palates. This can make it easier for you to fully enjoy a simpler, more health-promoting diet and the benefits of vibrant, unmedicated, health for the rest of your life.

Editor’s Note: Resources for Putting This into Action

drinking water in glass

Fasting can be a powerful healing tool, and it’s been used for thousands of years. But only recently have research studies started to uncover the incredible potential of fasting for a variety of medical challenges, including high blood pressure.

These studies show that fasting may be the fastest way to lower blood pressure, and that, in the short term, it can dramatically lower even the highest blood pressure. So hooray for fasting! But no matter how much improvement someone obtains through fasting, their blood pressure will predictably return to its previous level if they resume eating the same foods they had been eating. To keep the gains they’ve gotten through fasting, it’s imperative that they now adopt — and maintain — a low-salt, whole foods, plant-strong diet. The short term results from fasting can be dramatic and maybe even life-saving. But for long term blood pressure health, eating a healthful diet is of primary importance. With or without fasting, such a diet is the key to maintaining a healthy blood pressure level, and achieving all of the extraordinary health benefits that can bring.

If you want to use water fasting or a medically supervised residential cleanse program, here are two resources you may want to consider:

  • Joel Fuhrman, M.D., has created a 21-day Guided Detox program so he can personally guide you through the intermittent fasting process. Using a special blend of fasting and high nutrient exposure, his program is designed to enable you to enjoy the advantages of intermittent fasting – which may include weight loss, lower blood pressure, and reduced inflammation – without the discomforts of typical diets and fasts.  The program runs November 4-24, 2019, and if you sign up from this link he will make a contribution to the work of Food Revolution Network. Find out more here.
  • TrueNorth Health Center in Santa Rosa, California, offers highly effective medically supervised water fasting and cleanse programs.

And remember: If you do a water fast, it’s critical to drink high-quality water. (Many Food Revolution members like the AquaTru water filter because it delivers high-quality water for a remarkably affordable price. Find out more and get a special discount here. If you order from this link, the AquaTru manufacturer will contribute a portion of the proceeds to support Food Revolution Network’s mission of healthy, ethical, sustainable food for everyone who eats.)

It’s heartening to know that we have natural treatments that can lower high blood pressure naturally. And unlike most of the blood-pressure-lowering drugs, the side effects of healthy eating are good ones — like increased energy, expanded mental clarity, and better sexual function. I’d call that a win!

Tell us in the comments:

  • Does this article change how you think about high blood pressure?
  • What are your experiences with high blood pressure?
  • Do you know or have you used any ways to lower blood pressure naturally?
Did you know? Eating to lower high blood pressure can be delicious!

By Alan Goldhamer, DC, and Doug Lisle, PhD • A version of this article was originally published on NakedFoodMagazine.com

Smoothies can be packed with protein; pre-workout energizers, hydrators, and post-workout recovery accelerators can deliver performance-enhancing nutrients; herbal teas can soothe or energize — all of these beverages have a functional purpose to meet specific wellness needs. And then there’s a less obvious, simple, blender-free drink that serves a mighty wellness-enhancing purpose. Providing more than just hydration, fresh lemon juice and water can deliver surprising benefits.

Starting every morning with a glass of warm lemon water is actually a ritual in Ayurveda or Yogic traditions, used to stimulate digestion for the day and clear the body of any toxins that may have settled in the digestive tract overnight. While it is tricky to apply the strict burden of evidence expected by Western science to traditional practices (often called “folk medicine”) that originated long before modern medical science standards were developed, research on the nutritional elements found in lemons suggests the numerous health benefits traditionally associated with drinking fresh lemon water daily may have merit.

We tend to reach for those warm beverages in the morning like coffee and tea, but try starting your day with some warm lemon water first to kick-start digestion. The water doesn’t always have to be warm, but it should be purified. Simply use half a fresh lemon per large glass of water or to taste and sip throughout the day. On a simple level, fresh lemons take plain old water up a notch. Here are 5 health benefits of drinking lemon water that elevate drinking it for reasons beyond just taste:

Support immune function: Lemons are high in antioxidant vitamin C, known for its supportive role in healthy immune function1,2 which may reduce the risk of respiratory infection3. Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) found in lemons demonstrates anti-inflammatory effects, and is used as complementary support for asthma and other respiratory symptoms4,5. Lemons also contain saponins6, which show antimicrobial properties that may help keep cold and flu at bay. Last but not least, ascorbic acid enhances iron absorption in the body; iron plays an important role in immune function7.

Alkalize the body: Although the tartness of a lemon may make them seem acidic, lemons are actually one of the most alkalizing foods for the body. Lemons contain both citric and ascorbic acid, weak acids easily metabolized from the body allowing the mineral content of lemons to help alkalize the blood.

Aid digestion: Citrus flavonols8 are believed responsible for lemon’s traditional use as a digestive tonic. Believed to stimulate and purify the liver, lemon juice is traditionally understood to support digestive hydrochloric acid in the stomach further aiding digestion. Vitamin C status has been associated with reduced risk of peptic ulcers caused by the bacteria Helicobacter pylori9.

Clear skin: Vitamin C and other antioxidants in lemons combat free radical damage. Free radical damage — especially as caused by UV exposure and environmental toxins — is responsible for many symptoms of aging. Antioxidant intake can help offset this damage, minimizing wrinkles. Further, lemon juice can be applied topically to scars and age spots to help reduce their appearance. Traditionally used as a liver stimulant, lemon water is also believed to help purge toxins from the blood, helping to keep skin clear of blemishes.

Promote healing: Ascorbic acid (vitamin C), found in abundance in lemons, promotes wound healing, and is an essential nutrient in the maintenance of healthy bones, connective tissue, and cartilage10. As noted previously, vitamin C also displays anti-inflammatory properties. Combined, vitamin C is an essential nutrient in the maintenance of good health and recovery from stress and injury.

Thanks to the preservation of some sacred texts, we have access to the wisdom of 5000 years of medical science. Find out what healing substances have stood the test of time, and are still some of the safest and most potent medicines available today

Ayurveda, a sanskrit word meaning “knowledge of life”, refers to a system of medicine developed in India during the Vedic period more than 2,000 years ago. The oral tradition is believed to extend as far back as 5,000 years.1 Outlined in the sacred Hindu texts known as The Great Trilogy, Ayurveda is believed to be the world’s oldest healing science still in practice today.

The Ayurvedic system for maintaining health and balance is rooted in the inextricable link between mind and body, inner life and outer world. In many traditional cultures, the doctors were sages, holy men and women for whom the outward presentations of disease were rooted in the non-physical world. Today, our medical practices typically do not involve a patient’s spiritual beliefs, and yet, through placebo effect, this phenomenon happens every day. With placebo effect, a patient is given an inert substance, like a sugar pill, that they believe to be a potent medicine. At least half the time, the patient gets better. “Real” versus “fake” medicine makes no difference on outcomes; rather, it’s what the patient believes about their treatment. While Western scientists often denigrate this effect as an unfortunate human side-effect that distorts results, Ayurvedic practitioners called Vaidyas, recognize that the power of our belief is something we can harness for deep, healing impact.

A Holistic View of Body/Mind

Ayurveda teaches that healing starts at the level of thought, and illness results from accumulated toxins that undermine the balance of the body. By working at the physical level through diet, yoga, and interventions like massage, the toxins can be released and the balance of the doshas restored. Meditation affects healing at the mental level, and a spiritual practice of reverence for all life is encouraged. Ayurveda is ultimately a system for developing and maintaining a balanced body-mind complex, and for living a holistic and integrated life.

To understand Ayurveda, one must understand the way this science views the world. In this system, everything on Earth can be seen as a combination of five master elements, or mahabhutas:

  • Earth (Prithvi) – structure, solidity, bones; cool, heavy energy that stabilizes
  • Water (Jala) – cohesive, dissolving, moving; a protective barrier; damp and flowing like blood and lymph
  • Fire (Agni) – hot, sharp, perceptive; metabolism, digestive process; fast energy that transforms
  • Air (Vayu) – changeable, gaseous, dizzying; the realm of thought; dry, cold energy that moves
  • Ether (Akasha) – pure potential, spirit realm; a clear, light, subtle energy that encompasses all things

The master elements are further distilled into three primary doshas, or energy types, that represent specific combinations of these elements. Each dosha combines two of the five master elements:

  • Vatta (ether & air) – dry, cold, changeable; controls all movement in the body
  • Pitta (fire & water) – hot, damp, driven; controls metabolic functions and energy
  • Kapha (earth & water) – dense, cold, oily; controls the formation of cells and body structures

These doshas govern all physical and mental processes of the human body. Everyone is born with a “doshic blueprint” that is set at conception: an individual mixture of the five master elements. If a person is lightly built, with irregular features, dry skin, coarse hair, and a tendency towards constipation, that person would be said to have a vatta constitution. Someone with a muscular build, lots of energy, a strong appetite, and a tendency towards heartburn and indigestion (and possibly fits of rage), would likely be pitta dosha. A stocky person with a tendency towards overweight, smooth skin, a warm nature, and a need for 8 hours (or more) of sleep every night, would have kapha dosha dominant in their physiology.

These doshas are fixed in our inherent constitution, and present in the world around us in the food we eat, the places we dwell, and the activities we engage in. For example, a person who lives in a hot, humid climate experiences pitta dosha (fire + water) when they step outside each day. They may naturally be drawn to cool, bitter salads and sweet, tropical fruits in order to balance the fiery nature of pitta. Conversely, someone who lives in a cold, dry area may choose to eat hot, spicy soup for lunch most days, thus “firing up” pitta dosha to balance exposure to the cold.

It may sound like common sense, and in many ways, achieving balance is about trusting our intuition when making daily choices. The key to using Ayurveda lies in understanding what elemental qualities are prominent in you by nature, and which qualities are being emphasized (and potentially aggravated) by your lifestyle.

Prescription for Disease Prevention

The focus of Ayurvedic medicine is to restore the balance of elements within the patient’s body and mind. To apply the right curative to a particular ailment, all medicinal substances are classified by twenty characteristics, or gunas, which are seen in all things. Qualities such as heavy or light, cold or hot, dull or sharp, static or mobile, smooth or coarse, and others, are ascribed to both the malady and the remedy. Specific herbs and oils are applied with the philosophy that like increases like, and opposite qualities have a reducing effect. For example, flatulence represents an excess of vatta or “wind” in the intestines. Eating raw vegetables, which are vatta-enhancing, tend to make this condition worse. Kapha-enhancing treatments such as oil massage of the abdomen, or drinking warm tea with milk and aromatic spices, soothe conditions like gas by reducing excess vatta dosha.  

Preserving health, thereby preventing disease, is the primary aim of Ayurveda. Curing disease is viewed as a process of restoring the doshic balance of the constitution, and purging accumulated toxins so that self-healing can occur. Therefore, many of Ayurveda’s curative treatments focus on detoxification, restoring vital energy, and supporting the body’s natural processes of sleep, digestion, and elimination.

To keep in balance and free of disease, Ayurveda recommends a lifestyle that prioritizes the following:

  • Pure food and water is consumed (a high-vibrational, Sattvic diet)
  • Sleep is moderate (neither too much, nor too little) and restorative
  • The mind is calmed through meditation
  • A peaceful spirit is maintained by acknowledging one’s connection to all life

When the balance of health is lost, as often occurs in the everyday world, Vaidyas use all five senses to diagnose the patient. They listen to the quality of the breath and speech. They observe the patient’s skin tone, eye clarity, and other physical characteristics. They may touch the patient’s skin to feel if they are hot or cold, oily or dry, rough or smooth. The pulse is taken, and possibly stool and urine samples. Once the nature of the disorder is determined via this intensive examination, a combination of detoxification practices and powerful herbal preparations called rasayanas, are typically prescribed to correct the imbalance.

Herbal rasayanas are defined in the Sanskrit tradition as “that which negates old age and disease.” Rasayanas are typically a combination of ghee (clarified butter), fruits, herbs, honey, roots, and minerals. The exact mixtures are made in accordance with whatever energies need to be increased, or decreased in the patient. These medicinal preparations come in many forms: a thick paste of honey and fruit, designed to be consumed like food; combined with alcohol to make tinctures; mixed with warm water to make infusions. Some dried rasayanas can be taken in capsule-form.

Ayurveda has identified numerous important herbs for healing, along with potent superfoods that show up repeatedly in rasayana preparations. Here are three popular herbs used in rasayanas and herbal medicines by Vaidyas the world over.

Amalaki

Amla is the Hindi word for “sour,” given to the tree that bears the gooseberry-like amalaki fruits used in Ayurveda. A potent stimulator of the sour guna, or taste, amalaki has been used for thousands of years to restore the body. One of the three fruits in Triphala, an Ayurvedic wonder drug, one amalaki fruit contains the vitamin C of nearly twenty lemons, and thirty times the antioxidant potency of red wine.

Scientific studies of the amla fruit have examined its many superpowers, including:

  • Analgesic, making it a great pain-reliever
  • Cardioprotective, creating strong, healthy veins
  • Gastroprotective, strengthening and healing the gut-lining
  • Improves skin, with demonstrated wound-healing capabilities
  • Strengthens lungs by healing mucous membranes
  • Protects brain cells by strengthening cellular structure

And many other benefits have been found. Amla fruit has even shown efficacy at treating and preventing cancer. With such an astonishing array of benefits, this Ayurvedic powerhouse deserves a place in everyone’s health arsenal!

Amrit Kalash

The herbal formulation known as amrit kalash is considered the preeminent Ayurvedic rasayana. The Charaka Samhita credits amrit kalash as having the ability to:

  • Improve cognitive ability
  • Increase longevity
  • Impart radiance to the skin
  • Sharpen the senses and intellect

But we no longer need to rely on ancestral wisdom passed down through millennia to affirm the healing potential of Ayurvedic medicine. There have been dozens of scientific studies on amrit kalash that have sought to validate claims made by Vaidyas as to the potency of this medicine.

The International Maharishi Ayurveda Foundation in the Netherlands, published a summary of scientific studies on amrit kalash, exploring its usefulness across the following areas of health:

  • Cancer and chemotoxicity
  • Antioxidant
  • Cardiovascular
  • Diabetes
  • Immunity
  • Anti-aging
  • Neurophysiology and brain health

Some of the findings strongly support the claims Ayurvedic doctors have made for centuries. A 2005 study on both young and old mice explored the potential of amrit kalash to enhance resistance to infections and disease, as well as enhance longevity. The results showed that amrit kalash altered the behaviors typical of aging cells. It even effectively slowed aging! It also improved overall immune system function and had an adaptogenic effect. These findings are supported by numerous, additional studies on amrit kalash’s antioxidant properties, which demonstrate its amazing potential to slow the effects of time.

Ashwagandha

Another herb that all Vaidyas have in their cabinet is ashwagandha. Considered one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurveda, ashwagandha is also known as winter cherry and Indian ginseng. As one might expect from ginseng, ashwagandha is invigorating! An adaptogen, it helps the body bounce back from illness, and gives overall energy and immunity a powerful boost. It has a reputation for enhancing sexual vigor, as well as improving mood and our ability to focus and concentrate.  

This bushy plant known formally as Withania somnifera, produces small, red berries, and is a member of the nightshade family. The name translates roughly to “the strength of ten horses,” and scientists have conducted studies to see if these claims held weight. One such study examined ashwagandha’s adaptogenic properties, and sought to validate any impact on immune system function. Mice were subjected to stress tests by being forced to swim for a period of several minutes. Researchers found that ashwagandha improved stamina, and fortified adrenal glands, typically exhausted by stress.  

Other studies on ashwagandha show a demonstrated effect on managing uterine fibroid tumors, improving memory, and being useful treatment for neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, and Alzheimer’s diseases. Ashwagandha has also been shown to possess “great potential” as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.


References Written By: GMI Reporter

1. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayurveda

2. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/ayurveda/introduction.htm

3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayurveda

4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sattvic_diet

5. https://mvsthesaurus.mum.edu/thesaurus/tr180.htm

6. Pole, Sebastian. Ayurvedic Medicine: The Principles of Traditional Practice. Churchill Livingston Elsevier, 2006. 52, 126-127, 296, 303-304, 326.

7. https://www.taiyointernational.com/press-releases/new-research-may-explain-some-of-the-amla-fruits-legendary-health-benefits/

8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21317655

9. https://www.imavf.org/wp-content/uploads/MAV_Summary_of_Research_Findings.pdf

10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1084244/

11. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Withania_somnifera

12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10720789

13. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3252722/

14. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25857501Disclaimer: 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.