How Herbs Help Humans Volume 1, Section 1. Introduction & Basic Therapeutic Guidelines for Great Health.

9 09 2015

How Herbs Help Humans Vol. 1, Section 1. 

I want to write some articles on how herbs help humans because our mindset in Western Culture is not onherbs.jpg.653x0_q80_crop-smart prevention but on treating symptoms.  Whether you like it or not we are all influenced by the Western medicine mindset on treating symptoms and using drugs & surgery as our main methods of controlling ill health.  Unfortunately, while these methods can be helpful, they do come up short in many illnesses as can be testified by many who have experienced some relief of symptoms only to have drug side-effects and now a different set of symptoms.  I am sure you have known at least one person who has experienced this situation.

What I want to attempt to do is to provide some simple solutions by looking at some herbs that have influence on digestive disturbances, mental health disturbances & structural disturbances/herbal first aid remedies to start.   Unless a person has an allergy to a specific plant or plant family, then there are typically no side-effects to these methods providing you follow instructions from a Clinical Herbalist who knows exactly how to use the herbs.  These articles, then will be to provide information and peek a person’s interest who may be suffering while looking for simple solutions that work.

I will be adding to this volume as I add different herbal monographs and how to use them.  Some herbs need to be used in a formula to get better and quicker results and some herbal remedies need to be taken frequently to get great results in first aid treatment,  plus there are what is called Basic Therapeutic Guidelines that need to be followed in order for the remedies in chronic illnesses like mental & digestive disturbances to really grasp hold and work well.  I will indicate these details on the “herbal monograph” which will be a short blurb on the herb in terms the layman can understand.

Before getting into the herbs themselves I will list what I call the “Basic Therapeutic Guidelines” for great health.

Diet:

A. Avoid:  white flour, white rice (in most cases), white sugar, deep fried foods and generally any “fast foods”.  These foods tend to increase inflammation and cause imbalances in mood, digestion & blood chemistry.  Also avoid aspartame or any other artificial sweetener.  If you need an alternative use “raw” Stevia as it does not have an after taste like the “white” processed Stevia does.

B. Eat: Low glycemic (low sugar) foods like green leafy vegetables (romaine lettuce, leaf lettuce, spinach, spring greens etc.), cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, collards, kale, kohlrabi etc.) Also, whole grains, like brown rice, quinoa etc.,  for those who can eat grains and high protein foods like meat, beans, legumes etc.  Note: 50% of what you eat should ideally be non-starchy green vegetables.

Eat & Drink Fermented Foods like; Kombucha, water kefir, milk kefir, yogurt, crunchy sauerkraut, other fermented vegetables, etc.  I am not referring to drinking alcoholic beverages either, though some kefir drinks can contain a small amount of alcohol.  Note: all sauerkraut or fermented vegetables needs to be eaten at room temperature rather than cooked.

Sleep:  At least 9 hours per day and go to bed at the same time and get up at the same time every day.  If you are a shift worker do your best to follow this as much as you can. (If you have trouble sleeping and did not indicate this symptom on the intake form please let me know so I can help you with this.) Please also refer to the “sleep hygiene” checklist.

Stress:  Practise stress-reducing techniques like meditating, exercising at least 3x per week and 1 hour each time, listen to relaxing music, talk to a friend, take up a hobby, get in the outdoors, practise self-hypnosis as directed in the book “In Pursuit of Excellence by Terry Orlick”, practise body mindfulness with the help of a licensed counsellor etc.

Life Purpose:  Create a “mission statement” or discover your purpose in life by believing in a “power greater than yourself” & ask for help from this “power greater than yourself.”

Laugh:  Laugh daily and find at least 6 gifts to be grateful for.  Write them down.  Watch a funny movie or listen to a “clean” comedian.

Keep a Health Log/Journal:  For those of you who have a chronic illness you will need to keep a health log or health journal to record what you are doing and your symptoms.  This will give information regarding the correlation of lifestyle changes & remedies to your relief or increase in symptoms.  Record all that you do for your health including the prescriptions that you may be using from your doctor etc.

Vitamin D:  For those of you who live up in Canada take at least 10,ooo iu of Vitamin D per day for a healthy immune system, nervous system & for your bones.   It must be taken year round since we do not get enough sunshine here in Canada to stop taking it during the summer months, plus sun screen and showering less than 1 hour after being exposed to the sun stops your body from making Vitamin D.  It is vital for everyone to take this simple vitamin as it has been implicated in the prevention of many diseases.  Note: for those suffering with SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder you cannot afford to miss a day of this, since it will help with the SAD symptoms.

Omega 3’s:  Everyone, unless you are allergic, should be taking Omega 3 oils from fish or flax oil since it helps with inflammation and supports good immune, mental and joint health.  Note: for those suffering from SAD or other mental disturbances you will need an exact amount, determined by a trained professional/Clinical Herbalist, to get the best results.  Also, if you are allergic to fish then you could eat lamb, grass fed beef, eggs, game meats & poultry, but if you suffer from mood swings, depression of any kind and you cannot have fish oil, then I would take flax oil instead.   Most people need at least 3,000 mg per day and those suffering from mental symptoms need more as in 7,000 to 10,000 mg per day.  (That is an amount discovered in clinical research.)

Note:  If you don’t think you need to supplement with “Essential Fatty Acids” (EFA’s) then just look at the palms of your hands.  If they are “orange” instead of “pink” then you are low in EFA’s.  Nothing will change this unless you actually supplement with the correct amount as well as the “correct” EFA type for you.  Some people need a blend of oils while others can get away with just one type.  In my clinical experience, I have observed that the majority of people need 2 oil types either Fish or Flax oil and either Borage or Evening Primrose or a blend of 3 or more oils as found in “Udo’s oil”.

I would highly recommend if you take it in liquid that you keep it refrigerated and use it regularly so that the bottle does not go rancid.  And the liquid form can be cheaper in cost when you take it in high amounts for depression or mood disorders.

Magnesium citrate or diglycinate:  Up to 60% of people are low in Magnesium as it cannot be stored in the body.  It is important for all muscle function through out the body and helps to get rid of cramps and assists in all kinds of important chemical reactions through out the body.  It can improve; sleep, bowel movements, menstrual cramps, irritability etc.  Most people need about 500 to 1500 mg per day.

Nerve &/or Adrenal Formula: At Hirai Health Services one of our specialties is to develop formulas for people undergoing stress to help protect their adrenals, digestion & immune system.  The Nervous System is at the top of the body’s hierarchy & controls your stomach acid, hormones, elimination etc.  A herbal nerve formula will keep the nerves functioning without succumbing to stress as easily & your recovery will be much quicker once the stress is over.   (By the way, stress can just be working very long days at a job you love for weeks & months on end without having regular weekly breaks or daily breaks.)

Also, for those who train “physically” taking a nerve formula can be quite useful to help your muscles recuperate from the stress of working out even though a workout can be a very positive thing.

Adrenals are affected by your nerves first, then if the stress does not go away your stomach acid starts to decline & you will have trouble digesting protein as well as absorbing nutrients like Iron & B12.  Then the bacteria will start to overgrow in your small intestine causing “SIBO” symptoms, (Small Intestine Bacteria Overgrowth) which is another whole can of worms on its own.  Also, the bones will start to be affected over time because you will not be able to absorb Calcium & other minerals as well since the adrenals are part of the “kidney” in Chinese Medicine & kidney health is paramount to bone health.  Then there is the heart & the Cardiovascular system.  Increased stress will increase your chance of Cardiovascular disease as well, like blood pressure, strokes, heart attacks.

And to think all of the above symptoms can be prevented by stress management, a nerve formula & possibly an adrenal formula when required.  Also just a quick note on when to take a nerve formula, I recommend 1 hour before bed and then take the adrenal support formula in the morning before going to work.

Active B complex: Which means a B complex that is activated with a methyl group so that your body can use it right away.  Yes, it is true that some people methylate better than others and you can determine that by either symptoms or going to 23andme & get a DNA test to determine if you are a methylater or not.  But B vitamins are very important for digestion & assimilation of food as well as important for nerves.

Zinc:  This mineral is very important for digestion since most enzymes are Zinc dependent.  Even if you take just 25 mg a day to keep up your digestion unless you have a diagnosed problem with digestion then you would have to take more.

Think Green!  The liver does something like 300 functions every 3 minutes….so it needs a lot of TLC to keep it going.  How about giving it a “Green” drink or large dark green leafy salad on a daily basis.  If you can add sprouts to the salad including sprouted seeds & soaked nuts even better.  Be careful of drinking too much oxalic acid veggies in drinks as some peoples’ kidneys can hurt from running all that oxalic acid through them!  You would know if this was an issue because your upper back will ache.  Wheat grass or sprout drinks along with Romaine Lettuce do not contain oxalic acid so you can drink plenty of those daily without risk of irritating your kidneys.  Click “here” to check out the list of oxalic acid containing foods.

Visit a Natural Health Practitioner at least 2x per year for “dis-ease” prevention:  Find someone that you can work with, that listens to you & that has a “work” guarantee program.  If you have a problem that is complex or deep, Ie. have had for many years, then a “team” approach is definitely appropriate.  Acupuncture, Cranial Sacral, Chiropractic, Homeopathy, Herbs, Colon Hydrotherapy  etc., can all have a positive affect along with a few herbs & cleansing spring and fall to keep your toxicity level down.  In my clinical experience, most severe problems are due to nutritional deficiencies or toxicity overload.

Please note:  This article is for information purposes only and is not meant to be used for diagnostic or treatment.  This information is applied at the reader’s own discretion.

 

 

 

 

 

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Steps to Healing (adapted from Dr. Mikael Adams N.D.)

10 01 2015

 Steps to Healing (adapted from Dr. Mikael Adams N.D.)imgres-1

These steps are for chronic conditions of the body, which we will all experience at some point in life, whether the beginning, middle or end.  These steps are not necessarily in the order that you will heal, in fact some of them can be done together.  Ie. Psychological/Spiritual help can be done at the same time as taking drainage or detoxification therapy.

These steps are based on the supposition that the person is on the correct diet for themselves & avoiding exposure, as much as humanly possible, to toxins in their environment. (Correct diet, with good, filtered water, preferably alkaline water so it will absorb properly & the avoidance of chemicals in food, air, water and on your skin.)

Step One:  Open the Excretory Organs & drain:  a)Bowels, b)Lymphatic system, c) Kidneys,    d) Skin, & the liver empties via the bowel.  Ultimately you want to get at the CELLULAR level which requires more than just a great diet.  This is where herbs & homeopathic remedies come in.  Herbs can scour the toxins around & inside your cells, the Unda #’s, which are homeopathic remedies, are used to get rid of cellular toxins, & will help you get rid of toxins affecting cellular function & enzyme systems, that rely on nutrients to run.  When your body’s cells are  “cleaned” this way,  then your supplements & even food  you use will be less in volume or calories, but nutrient rich, since your body will run more efficiently and need less calories to do it. So eating nutrient dense foods with less calories will help your body function correctly while you do the cleansing but it will NOT take the place of cleansing.  Eating a diet such as this will not detoxify you at the cellular level by itself…this is a mistake that a lot of people make.  It isn’t all about diet, in this case. (Ie. When you tune up your car, your gas mileage gets better because it will require less to run on.)

Step Two: Eliminate Environmental Toxins & the predisposition to “collecting” them in your body.  This can be done by treating your “constitution” and your “tendencies” that  you were born with.  This is usually through homeopathic remedies that release the negative tendency and “neutralize” its influence.  These are chronic conditions like; scoliosis, schizophrenia, alcoholism, diabetes, weak lungs, weak joints etc.

Step Three:  Stimulate the enzymes & substitute where necessary.  Using certain herbs to increase digestive power or using the Unda #’s to clean off the enzyme systems can help the person’s body to digest & assimilate their food much more effectively.  (I always say “you are what you assimilate.”)  In this way, all the organs and the systems made up from the organs will function more effectively creating a stable energy flow through out the day with no dips to the energy.  Remember, we are a human chemical factory and if there is a blockage in any of the enzyme systems the liver will try to push wastes through another enzyme system, if it does not work, you will store the toxins often in your bowel, lymphatic system and your between your cells causing you to become lethargic.  This is gradual of course and is often why people do not pick up on their problems quick enough since they believe it has to do with “old age” or working too much etc.  Cancer and other degenerative dis-ease starts here…at the cellular level.

Step Four:  Dysbiosis Therapy which is basically working on your gut and making sure that you are eating fermented foods daily like; water kefir, milk kefir, sauerkraut, fermented veges etc.  (Pickled food is not fermented.)  You may also need some herbs for the gut if you have a parasite or an overgrowth of bacteria in the gut which can lower your B12 levels and cause low energy.  Having a gut with the correct amount of healthy flora will help you produce B vitamins, enzymes etc.

Step Five:  Reduce Stress & Tonify the Qi.  Herbs & diet combined can help to tone the Qi & reduce stress in our body. If you compare this to your car engine, the gas will flow freely to the engine to combust with little waste left over and give your car the energy it needs to run smoothly. This is when you will have the best energy, no blocks to your energetic system.  The herbs & diet you need to maintain this energy or Qi will depend on your body type & individual idiosyncrasies, which is why it is important to get checked out by a professional.  Since just because a certain herb/regime helped someone else does not mean it is the best for you.  It will save you time and money to actually get checked out by a Holistic Professional of your choice since you will not have to guess what you need and waste money trying it out.

Step Six:  Nutritional Support, like Vitamin & Mineral supplements or nutritive herbs can also work well or green smoothies or juicing etc.  Anything to get your nutrient quotient up.  Think organic veges with some fruit in season.

Step Seven:  Constitutional therapy especially for the way you express and feel emotions & your body’s tendencies to certain dis-ease.  Healing your emotions or the way you express them can be challenging for some people.  Ultimately, the way you express yourself or do not express yourself is the way you were built and conditioned.  Certain homeopathic remedies can be helpful for those whose emotions are “stuck” and cause havoc in the body.  Ie. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or any chronic disease has an emotional element to it plus some so called “genetic” dis-eases can be helped by this type of therapy.

Step Eight:  Organ & Enzyme regeneration are sometimes required and organotherapy (a specific form of homeopath aimed at a specific organ to help it function normally) can be useful here.  Even some high strength antioxidants either in foods or herbs are very useful here to restore and protect the liver especially, but also the cardiovascular system, kidneys etc.  This will keep the body from degenerative diseases by protecting the body against the pollutants we have no control over as in the “air you breathe”.  Ie. We all need protection from air pollution.

Step Nine:  Spiritual/Psychological Healing:  Personally, I believe all that we do is spiritual, even if it is just the body, since the body houses the soul and we are one unit.  But sometimes people experience trauma in their life and it will create a vortex that uses up a lot of energy, since the person will be reacting to things that set them off without control.  So these traumas need to be healed and can be released through EMDR methods quite effectively or even talk therapy,  if you get the right professional for yourself.  Also, having a faith in someone bigger than your world can be essential to healing as it will give meaning to the suffering we all endure to one extent or another and hope, to get through it or be healed in the next life, in heaven.

Step Ten:  Removal of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMG) & Geopathic Stress from cell phones, cell phone towers and zones that cause geopathic stress in houses or buildings that people reside in.  Generally, EMG and Geopathic Stress cause Cancer over time but also very low energy and other inflammatory conditions of the body in the mean time.  There is a lot of evidence out there now where you can see the research on the cause and effect of these sources of radiant energy.  These types of energy will affect the body’s electrical system and cause the  bodys’ energy field  to be over-powered by the energy fields from phones & cell phone towers especially, but also geopathic stress will do this also.  One of the protectors I recommend are the Pulsor products which contain various strengths of Piezo Electric Crystals which will emit a field over your own energy field and strengthen it so that you are not affected by the fields that surround you.  (I have experienced this personally around large pieces of automated chemistry equipment while working in the hospital and the Pulsor Crystals saved me.  Very low energy was my symptom…so low that I could hardly function at the end of the day.)

 

Disclaimer:  Please note this article is strictly for information purposes only.  It is not meant to diagnose or prescribe or give advice.  Each person must take responsibility for their own health and get the advice specific for their own situation from a professional of their choice.

 








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