Trouble Getting Some Zzzzzzs? Try These Sleep Aids

 

I’ve certainly had my share of sleep-deprived nights. For me, it’s usually not a matter of having trouble falling asleep, but waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to get BACK to sleep.

Anyway, if you’re looking for some natural ways to help you get a better night’s rest, then I hope you find the following information helpful. I haven’t tried all the things listed here, but the ones I’ve used so far that seem to make a difference are magnesium and tart cherries, either freeze-dried or in juice concentrate form (be sure you buy organic, since cherries are one of the most pesticide-laden crops around). FYI, 8 oz of Montmorency tart cherry juice has 4 times the melatonin of other kinds of cherries, so that’s what I always look for. I keep meaning to try kiwis, since I really like them, but usually eat them in the morning, so I want to see what happens if I eat them before bed.

 

High sleep index foods

You’ve probably heard of tryptophan, the amino acid that many people blame for their lethargy after Thanksgiving dinner. The body converts tryptophan into neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and melatonin, that help us relax. As a result, tryptophan-rich foods help us feel sleepy. Turkey, hummuslentils and kelp are naturally high in tryptophan and contain many other beneficial nutrients.

*Bananas are also a great “sleep index” food: They contain tryptophan, potassium and magnesium, all of which are natural muscle relaxants. Cherries are a good source of melatonin, which can help us get more restful, reparative sleep.

And did you know that in one study, people who ate two kiwi fruits before bed got an extra hour of sleep at night? They woke up later and took less time to fall asleep.

Carbohydrate-rich foods are often excellent at promoting better sleep. A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that high-glycemic carbohydrates, which increase sugar levels rapidly, encourage sleep when eaten about four hours before bedtime. Jasmine rice, potatoescarrots, corn and honey are healthy options.

Calcium helps the brain use tryptophan to create melatonin. Specific food combinations, such as whole grain cereals and milkpeanut butter sandwiches, or cheese and crackers contain balanced amounts of calcium and carbohydrates. Calcium is also a natural muscle relaxant.

When to eat

Eating high sleep index foods calms the nervous system and triggers sleep-inducing hormones. But timing is everything. A large meal right before bedtime can interfere with sleep. Tryptophan takes at least an hour to reach the brain, so plan meals accordingly.

Avoid rich, high-fat foods close to bedtime. They require a lot of work to digest and may cause stomach trouble and heartburn. Also, moderate your beverages. Too many fluids will cause frequent trips to the bathroom during the night. In particular, caffeinated beverages stimulate the body and act as diuretics, a double whammy when trying to sleep.

Natural sleep aids

As noted, there is no shortage of sleep aids, either over the counter or by prescription. While these aids generally work in the short term, they come with a long list of detrimental side effects and can become habit-forming. In addition, these powerful drugs are known to interfere with a number of critical biological mechanisms. Remember, they’re not meant to be gentle, but rather to put you out like a light.

I recommend a combination of relaxing, non-habit-forming herbs: lemon balm, passionflower, vitamin B6 and small doses of melatonin, about 500 mcg, can be very helpful.

When taken together 15 minutes before bed, these herbs and nutrients help to promote a gentle state of relaxation and drowsiness. Even better, they help optimize the body’s natural repair processes during sleep. They also work to support numerous other areas of health and longevity as well.

One of the shortcomings of modern society is that every problem requires maximum response. But when it comes to healthy relaxation and restful sleep, you should take a softer, gentler approach.

High sleep index foods, together with calming supplements can help you relax, enjoy a restful sleep and wake feeling refreshed. Other excellent sleep-supportive measures include mindful relaxation techniques, such as meditation and deep breathing.

Getting a good night’s rest is one of the best things you can do for health and well-being. When you support your natural sleep rhythms and cycles with the right foods, supplements and healthy relaxation measures, you reap significant and noticeable benefits. In addition to greater physical energy, mental clarity and emotional balance, getting quality sleep each night results in stronger vitality and better overall health, naturally.

Source: http://easyhealthoptions.com/high-sleep-index-foods-nutrients-help-sleep-like-baby/

 

Turmeric milk, also called golden milk,  before bedtime is used by many people as a sleep aid (also see the link later in this post to the Self-help **blog on golden milk that includes a version where you don’t have to make a paste beforehand)……

Source : http://www.thepaleosecret.com/fbfreegift/morningdrinkfb/01/

**Also see this Self-help Health post on golden milk.

One of my favorite relaxation and sleep aids is lavender essential oil….rubbing a couple of drops on my hands and then inhaling, or dabbing on my wrists, temples or soles of my feed. Also, warm epsom salt soaks, and being careful of the amount of blue light I get at night by turning off the computer an hour or two before bedtime. I’ve also read where oranges, pineapples and passion flower tea are helpful. Chamomile tea is well-known for its relaxing, sleep-inducing quality, and the Mediterranean diet and olive oil are supposedly good for sleep, as well. And I read that most sleep disorders are connected to hormonal toxicity, so that’s something some people may need to address.

*And the peel of a banana apparently has 3 times as much magnesium as the fruit itself, which is probably why someone came up with a recipe for using “Banana Tea” as a sleep aid. All you do is wash a banana (be sure it’s organic), cut in half w/ peel on; cut off tips and boil 3 to 4 minutes in filtered/structured water, steep and drink the liquid. You can refrigerate the fruit  for use the next day in a smoothie (the peel is totally edible and high in nutrition, so you may try tossing that in, too), yogurt, oatmeal, or some other way.

And here’s some info about using magnolia tree bark as a remedy for stress and deeper sleep:

https://easyhealthoptions.com/tree-bark-less-stress-sleep-not-pillow/

Want more info? Here’s a in-depth post by Dr Joseph Mercola about sleep, the ramifications of not getting enough of it, best sleeping positions, and 50 ways to improve it, including eliminating EMFs, using 5-HTP and/or magnesium, going back to using incandescent bulbs, and more.

Related Self-help Heath posts:

9 Yoga Poses For Better Sleep

What’s Not To Love About Cherries?!

Spirit Gate: Heart 7 Acupoint For Anxiety, Insomnia And More

Stay tuned for a post on how raising the head of your bed a few inches can promote better sleep, as well as help with varicose veins, detox the brain, and more!

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

Advertisements

Wow! Lots of Edible Flowers to enhance your meals!

 

Wow, I was aware of some of these, but never realized there were so many options of edible flowers! I’m excited and relieved  that spring is finally showing its face (we had an extra cold winter) and things are starting to bloom. I volunteer in a community garden and we grow a number of the flowers and herbs listed here, so now I’ll know to be picking even more of a variety to use in my salads than I did before. Delightful to have the added color and nutrition!

 

List of Edible Flowers

List of Edible Flowers

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Before you venture out to the garden and harvest a bunch of flowers for the dinner table, it’s important to remember that some flowers are poisonous. Make sure you’ve made a positive identification of each variety you’re using. Obviously, you should avoid flowers that may have been sprayed with pesticides or other chemicals, so either grow your own organic flowers, or harvest them from a location you’re sure about. Organic or not, all flowers should be shaken and washed in cold water prior to use, as they may to be homes for insects.

Pick your edible flowers in the morning, when they have the highest water content. Keep them on some dampened paper towel inside a sealed container in the refrigerator for as long as a week. You can revive wilted flowers by floating them in some ice water for a few minutes. Prepare them for eating just before serving in order to prevent further wilting.

Remove the stamens and styles from flowers before eating. Pollen can cause allergic reactions when eaten by some people, and it may overwhelm the otherwise delicate flavour of the petals. The exception here is the Violas, including Johnny-Jump-Ups and pansies, as well as scarlet runner beans, honeysuckle and clover. The flowers of these varieties can be enjoyed whole, and will probably be more flavourful this way.

This list of Edible Flowers is not comprehensive so if you notice a flower missing from this list, please do further research before you consider it edible. Don’t assume that all flowers are edible – some are highly poisonous.

Agastache BloomsAgastache – Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum) is also sometimes known as licorice mint. Both the young leaves and the striking purple flowers have a mild licorice flavour. Pull the purple flower tubes away from the central structure of the flower and scatter them in salads or fancy drinks for a pop of colour and flavour.

Angelica – This relative of celery (Angelica archangelica) has licorice-scented pinkish flowers borne in large umbels. The flowers make an interesting addition to salads, but it is mostly grown for its stronger-tasting leaves.

Apple – Be sure to only try flowers from trees that have not been sprayed. Apple blossoms (Malus spp.) have an appealing but delicate flavour and scent. They work particularly well with fresh fruit salads. Use in moderation, as the flowers contain very low levels of poisonous chemicals.

Edible flowers arugula flowersArugula – Once this cool-season plant (Eruca vesicaria) begins to bolt, its leaves will have become tough and almost too spicy to eat. So let it bolt, and enjoy some of its very small, spicy, white or yellow flowers. They add a nice, unusual zing to salads.

Edible basil flowersBasil – Most growers use basil’s leaves (Ocimum basilicum) before the plant has flowered. After blooming, the character of the leaves changes and becomes less appealing, but the flowers can be eaten. They may be white to lavender, but they look stunning when sprinkled over pasta. Thai basil is sometimes allowed to flower before whole stems, with leaves attached, are harvested. The whole flower is edible.

Edible tuborous begonia flowersBegonia – both tuberous (Begonia x tuberhybrida) and wax (B. x semperflorens-cultorum) begonias have edible flowers with a slightly bitter to sharp citrus flavour. Tuberous begonia flowers contain oxalic acid, so should be avoided by people suffering from kidney stones, gout, or rheumatism.

Edible flowers of Bergamot, wildBergamot, wild – This plant (Monarda fistulosa) may be listed as bee balm, Monarda, Wild Bergamot, Oswego Tea, or Horsemint. The flowers (and the young leaves) have an intense flavour of mint with undertones of citrus and oregano. This plant that has a scent highly reminiscent of Earl Grey tea. Somewhat confusingly, the “oil of bergamot” used to flavour Earl Grey is actually derived from citrus peel from the Bergamot Orange. Monarda flowers are formed by large clusters of edible tubular petals that can be separated before adding to cakes, fancy drinks, or salads.

Borage edible flowersBorage – This familiar garden herb (Borago officnialis) has furry leaves and exquisite blue, star-shaped flowers. Both have a cooling taste reminiscent of cucumber. Try some of the flowers in a summer lemonade or sorbet – or a gin & tonic! They work particularly well as garnishes for gazpacho, cheese plates, or just sprinkled over salads.

Calendula Seeds in bloomCalendula – All “pot marigolds” (Calendula officinalis) have flower petals that are edible. They have a nice flavour that ranges from peppery to bitter, and they add bright yellow, gold, and orange colour to soups and salads. They may even tint some dishes like saffron does.

Edible chamomile flowersChamomile – Choose the German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla syn. M. recutita) for its daisy-like flowers. They can be used fresh or dried, and make a particularly nice tea that tastes vaguely like apples. Drink the tea in moderation – some allergy sufferers may have a negative response. Otherwise, sprinkle the petals into salads and soups.

Chervil – The lacy leaves of this shade-loving herb (Anthriscus cerefolium) are topped by delicate white flowers borne in umbels. Both the leaves and the flowers have a very mild anise or licorice-like taste. Add chervil to your dishes just before serving to maintain the best flavour.

Edible flowers of chicoryChicory – All endive varieties (Cichorium endivia & C. intybus) produce, at summer’s end, tall stems with striking, sky-blue flowers. The petals can be pulled off and added to salads for their earthy, endive-like flavour. The unopened flower buds can also be pickled like capers.

List of edible flowers including chivesChives – The flowers of chives (Allium schoenoprasum) are ball-like clusters of hundreds of little florets that can be separated and scattered onto salads for colour and a mild onion flavour.

Shungiku edible chrysanthemum flowersChrysanthemum – The edible chrysanthemum and garland Chrysanthemum (both are Leucanthemum coronarium) that we offer produce both edible young leaves and appealing white daisy-like flowers with yellow centres, or flowers that are entirely yellow. The petals of both types are edible and faintly tangy.

Edible flowers of cilantroCilantro – This leafy herb (Coriandrum sativum) is also known as Coriander. In summer heat it is quick to bolt, and will send up tall umbels of white flowers. These have an intensely herbal flavour, just like the leaves, roots, and seeds of the plant, and can be used as a garnish where cilantro leaves would otherwise be used.

Edible clover flowersClover– The flower heads of clover (Trifolium spp.) are edible, and have a sweet, mild licorice flavour. In fact, the whole above ground plant is edible, but it’s best to grow clover as tender sprouts or to use the flower tubes in moderation as a salad garnish. Mature clover is tough to digest, and may cause bloating.

Blossoms of Cornflower Seeds in bloomCornflower – The pretty, blue flowers of cornflower (Centaurea cyanus) have a slightly spicy, clove-like flavour with a subtle sweetness. Cornflower petals look wonderful in salads. Use torn petals as a garnish, or whole flowers in fancy drinks.

Dame’s Rocket – The petals of this tall relative of mustard (Hesperis matronalis) are pink, lavender, or white, and always come in fours. Perennial Phlox looks similar, and also has edible flowers, but always have five petals. The petals (and the immature leaves) of Dame’s Rocket are worth adding to salads, but have a mild bitter flavour.

Edible dandelion flowersDandelion – The ubiquitous dandelion (Taxacum officinalis) is entirely edible. When picked small, and unopened, the flower buds have a surprising sweetness, reminiscent of honey. Young greens are also tasty either raw or steamed. Dandelion petals look very nice when scattered over pasta or rice. While dandelions are rather easy to come by, make sure to harvest them only from organic gardens. Avoid any grown near roads or picked from lawns where chemicals may be present.

Edible day lilies flowersDay Lilies – The fleshy, short-lived flowers of day lilies (Hemerocallis spp.) are sweet, with a flavour resembling mild melon or cucumber. Make sure to cut the tasty petals away from the bitter base of each flower. Try them in salads! Eat in moderation.

How to Grow DianthusDianthus – Look for the large-flowered carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus), and cut the sweet tasting petals away from the bitter white base of each flower. The bright red and pink petals have a mild clove flavour and are great for desserts or salads.

Edible dill flowersDill – Stronger in flavour than the leaves, the flowers of dill (Anethum graveolens) can be used when cooking fish, or raw in salads. They are very small, yellow, and borne on tall umbels. Best used when they have just opened, as they set seed quickly.

Edible flowers English daisyEnglish Daisy – The low growing flowers (Bellis perennis) have a bitter flavour, but are entirely edible. They are small enough to use simply by sprinkling the petals onto salads or other meals, and will not overwhelm stronger flavours.

How to grow Florence fennel Selma Fino Fennel Seeds HR1089-1Fennel – Both the garden herb and the vegetable Florence fennel(both are Foeniculum vulgare) will eventually produce attractive and tall umbels of tiny yellow flowers that have the same mild licorice flavour as the leaves. These work very well in desserts!

Edible fuchsia flowersFuchsia – Avoid nursery-bought Fuchsia (Fuchsia x hybrida) flowers, as they may have been sprayed. Otherwise, the extraordinary looking flowers make great garnishes and have a slightly acidic flavour.

Garlic scapes

Garlic Scapes!

Garlic – Allowed to open, garlic flowers (Allium sativum) are pink to white, with florets that can be separated and inserted into salads for a mild garlic zing. However, allowing the plants to flower may divert energy that would otherwise go to the bulb. Many garlic growers prefer to cut the flower stems (scapes) before they open. These can be sautéed in butter for an intense, early summer side dish, or run through the food processor and mixed with Parmesan cheese, olive oil, and pine nuts for a sensational pesto.

Hollyhocks edible flowersHollyhock – The large, brightly coloured flowers of common hollyhocks (Alcea rosea) have almost no flavour of their own, but they sure look nice cut into salads or sprinkled over desserts. Be sure to use the petals only – cut these away from the central structure of the flower just before serving.

Honeysuckle – The long flower tubes of various honeysuckle species are edible, but Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica) is best, with its distinctly honey-like flavour. Do not eat the berries that follow, or any other part of the plant, as they are all poisonous.

Impatiens – The flowers of Impatiens (Impatiens walleriana) may be bright white or shocking red, but the petals are edible and have a surprisingly sweet taste. They can be torn into salad or mixed into fancy drinks.

Johnny-Jump-UpJohnny-Jump-Up – This plant (Viola tricolor) produces masses of small, brightly coloured flowers that have a faint wintergreen taste. They look great served on cakes, served with soft cheeses, or as a topping for salads. Use the whole flower intact.

French LavenderLavender – Pull the clustered flowers of lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) apart and sprinkle a few pieces onto chocolate cake. Submerge one or two pieces in a glass of chilled champagne. The sweet, intensely floral flavour of lavender should be used with restraint, but adds an incredible to pop savory dishes as well as desserts.

Edible flowers lemon bergamotLemon Bergamot – Like its wild cousin above, Lemon Bergamot (Monarda citriodora) has a perfume-like, intense, almost astringent quality, but it is strongly scented with citrus. Use portions of the flower conservatively in drinks or desserts or in herbal teas.

Lilac – Like lavender, the flowers of lilac (Syringa vulgaris) have an intensely floral, almost perfumey flavour with lemon undertones. A little goes a long way, but one or two individual flowers added to a summer punch looks wonderful and tastes very refreshing.

Gold Gem Edible FlowersLemon Marigold Tagetes tenuifolia

Edible marigold flowersMarigold – Both French marigolds (Tagetes patula) and African marigolds (T. erecta) produce flowers that are technically edible, but the pungent scent is probably worth avoiding. African marigold flowers are used as a food colourant in Europe, but have only been approved for use as a poultry feed additive in the US. However,T. tenuifolia has a refreshing citrus, lemony flavour, and its petals work well torn into salads or smart drinks.

PeppermintMint – All mint varieties (Mentha spp.) have minty-flavoured, edible flowers that may be sweet or lemon-scented, or even with chocolate overtones depending on the type.

Edible Nasturtium flowersNasturtium – All garden nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus) produce edible flowers and leaves. Even the fresh seeds can be pickled like capers. Curiously this familiar garden flower is a cousin of the Brassica family (cabbage, broccoli, mustards, etc…). All parts of the nasturtium have a pleasant, sweet, peppery flavour. The flowers can be used whole to decorate salads and a variety of other foods, but you may want to remove the long spur at the back of the flower, as this is the nectary and may harbour small insects.

*For more on nasturtiums, check out the link to an article at the end of this post.

Edible pansies flowersPansy – The flower petals of the familiar garden pansy (Viola x wittrockiana) are edible and highly decorative. The petals have little flavour, but the whole flower can also be used. It has a grassy, wintergreen undertone that works well in fruit salad.

Edible pea flowersPea – Edible garden peas (Pisum sativum) produce edible flowers that look great in salads. Serve a blend of peas in a meal: shelled peas, pea tendrils, pea pods, and some flowers for garnish. Note: Ornamental sweet peas are poisonous.

Perennial Phlox – Be certain that you’ve got the tall-growing perennial garden Phlox (Phlox paniculata), and not the inedible annual, creeping type before you try the flowers. The perennial type bears pink to white flowers with five petals that have a pleasant, peppery flavour. They look great and taste great in fruit salads.

Primrose – With its bland, but highly colourful flowers, primrose (Primula vulgaris) is worth cultivating if only to tear its petals into a few summer salads. The flower buds can also be pickled, steamed, or fermented into wine.

Queen Anne’s Lace – The Wild Carrot (Daucus carota) produces tall umbels of exquisite, tiny, white flowers, each one marked by a blood-red centre. Although this plant is grown for its decorative, edible flowers, it can cross-pollinate with its close relative the carrot, so if you happen to be growing carrots with the intent of saving seed, avoid this plant in your garden. The flowers of Queen Anne’s Lace have a mild, carroty flavour. Be absolutely certain that the plant you are harvesting is not the invasive weed known as Wild or Poison Hemlock (Conium maculatum), which looks very similar. The stems of Queen Anne’s Lace are hairy, while Poison Hemlock has smooth, hollow stems with purple spots.

Garden party rose seeds FL2061 1Rose – Another surprisingly edible garden flower is the rose (Rosa spp.). Although its petals are intensely perfumed, their flavour is subtler and a bit fruity, with complex undertones that depend on the variety and soil conditions. The petals of all roses are edible, but you should remove the bitter white base of each petal. Be sure to use only rose flowers that have been organically grown from a reliable source, as nearly all nursery or cut flower roses will have been treated with pesticide.

Rosemary edible flowersRosemary – It takes nimble fingers to pull the strongly scented flowers of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) from between the tightly packed leaves. The leaves contain more oil than the flowers, but both are similar in flavour. Use the flowers as you would the herb. Flowers are deep blue to pink, depending on the soil.

Safflower edible flowersSafflower – The dried yellow flowers (Carthamus tinctorius) are sometimes sold as Mexican saffron, and used like saffron as a food dye. Otherwise, fresh petals can be torn into salads, soups, and sauces. They have a very mild flavour of their own.

Sage makes the list of edible flowersSage – The deep blue flowers of sage (Salvia officinalis) add an interesting mild-sage flavour to salads or savory dishes. Pull individual flower tubes from the stems and use with discretion, as the taste is strong.

Scarlet runner bean edible flowersScarlet Runner Bean – The flowers of this vine (Phaseolus vulgaris) are vivid, intense red, and also delicious. They make excellent garnishes for soups and salads, providing a real visual high note.

Large Leaf Organic SorrelSorrel – Like the leaves of sorrel (Rumex acetosa), its flowers have a strongly lemony flavour, and can be scattered over salad or used in sauces. The flavour comes from oxalic acid, so should be avoided by those with kidney conditions or rheumatism.

Squash-BlossomSquash – Both male and female flowers of all squash and zucchini varieties are edible, and have a faint squashy flavour. It may be sensible to only use the male flowers, as they will not form fruits. They can be torn into salads or stuffed with savory items like herbs and goat cheese, and then fried in a light tempura batter. There are many squash blossom recipes online.

Edible sunflower flowersSunflower – It’s still a little known fact that unopened sunflower (Helianthus annuus) buds can be steamed or sautéed in butter and served whole. They have an artichoke-like flavour. Alternately, the petals can be pulled from the edge of the opened flower and added to soups and salads. Their flavour is somewhat bitter.

Violet – Many varieties (Viola spp.) are suitable for decorating food. They come in a range of sweet, perfumed flavours, and a wide range of colours. Some of the tiniest violet flowers make the best additions to cakes, drinks, and salads.

(You can get seeds for these plants at westcoastseeds.com, the source of this article, as well as elsewhere.)

Source: https://www.westcoastseeds.com/garden-resources/articles-instructions/list-edible-flowers/

*Dr. Joseph Mercola recently did an article about growing and eating nasturtiums that includes the following highlights:

  • Nasturtiums — colorful flowers that are fast and easy to grow — provide edible blooms known for their peppery tang
  • As their name suggests, you can be “nasty” to nasturtiums because they do well in lean soil and thrive even when somewhat neglected
  • Nasturtiums not only contain beneficial amounts of vitamin C, beta carotene, iron and manganese, but they also boast the highest lutein content of any edible plant
  • Some of the purported medicinal uses for nasturtiums include fighting bacterial and fungal infections, neutralizing free radicals, promoting hair growth, soothing colds and coughs and treating skin conditions

You can read the full article here.

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

9 Yoga Poses + 10 Minutes = Better Sleep

 

As someone who is always in the market for natural ways to improve my quality of sleep. I have recently found several things that help, including tart cherry juice, and magnesium oil (more on these in future posts). And this looks like something worth checking out. I’m not adept at yoga or a super regular practitioner, but I always feel better and more relaxed whenever I fit some into my day, so I’m looking forward to giving this particular sequence of poses a try.

 

The 10-Minute Yoga Routine For Perfect Sleep

by DEANNA DORMAN

Do you ever have a hard time falling asleep? In today’s society, you’re probably not alone. With the constant feeling of “go, go, go,” it makes us anxious even as we are preparing for bed. It can be very challenging to fall asleep and get a restful night’s sleep with a constant feeling of anxiety and stress. Yoga can be a great way to de-stress and unwind as you get ready to hit the hay.

These yoga poses are all meant to help you clear your mind and feel relaxed. These poses can also stretch areas that may have tightened up through the day. Add this ten-minute sequence to your nightly routine to help you calm down and fall into a deep slumber.


Cat & Cow Pose

Start on all fours, with your hands under your shoulders and knees under hips. Inhale as your lengthen through your spine, arching your back, reaching the crown of your head and tailbone together, and drawing your shoulder blades down into a Cow pose.

Exhale as you bring your spine back to neutral and round your spine up towards the ceiling to curl your chin to your chest and pulling your belly button into your spine, coming into Cat pose. Work through Cat and Cow pose a few times, stretching and lengthening the spine.


Child’s Pose

Once you finish working through Cat and Cow pose a few times, sit your hips back onto your heels, bringing your toes together, but keeping your knees apart. Keep the arms reaching forward to stretch through the shoulders. Take a few breaths in this position, and if you’d like, walk both hands over to the right for a few breaths, and then over to the left for a few breaths to stretch out the obliques.


Seated Forward Fold

Start by sitting on your mat with your legs extended straight in front of you. Lengthen through your spine, sitting as tall as you can. Reach your arms in front of you to grab a hold of your feet or to place them in your shins.

Lengthen through your spine as much as possible — instead of just collapsing down towards your legs. Bend your knees as much as necessary to keep your back flat. This pose is a great hamstring stretch, but don’t make it deep and intense now; your ultimate goal is gentle relaxation.

Stay in the same seated position with your legs extended in front of you, and allow your back to stretch gently over your legs. Stay folded forward for a few deep breaths, feeling the stretch along your spine.


Wide Leg Forward Fold

Stand with your feet three to four feet apart, bringing your feet parallel to each other. Clasp your hands arms behind your back, pressing the heels of your palms together in a fist. Bend from your hips, folding forward, reaching the crown of your head and your hands toward the floor.

Relax your toes, and try to shift the weight into your toes. Stay here for a minute or two, allowing the crown of your head to keep reaching deeper to the floor.


Supine Bound Angle Pose

Start by laying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the mat. Open your arms out to the side at about 45 degrees away from the body. Let your knees drop out to the sides, bringing the bottoms of your feet together. Allow gravity to pull your knees wider, opening up the hips. Stay here for at least two minutes, breathing deeply, and sinking deeper into the pose.


Supine Spinal Twist

Laying on your back with your legs extended straight, pull your RIGHT knee in towards your chest. Hold the knee with your LEFT hand and guide it to cross over your body. Extend your RIGHT arm out to the side as if in a “T” position, and gaze out over your right hand. Hold for a minute or two, allowing the twist of your spine to increase with each exhale. Be sure to stretch the other side, as well.


Single Leg Happy Baby

Again, start by laying on your back with your legs extended, and pull the RIGHT knee back into your chest. Hugging the knee in towards the chest, grab a hold of the arch of your foot with your RIGHT hand. Bring the sole of the foot about parallel to the floor and pull the knee in close towards your armpit.

As you press into the sole of the foot with your hand, also press against the hand with your foot to increase the stretch. Keep the LEFT leg as straight as possible and you may also feel a stretch in the front of the left hip. Hold for 30-60 seconds taking deep breaths. Repeat on the other side.


Legs Up the Wall Pose

Sit next to a wall and lay on your side, keeping your hips as close to the wall as possible. As you turn to lay on your back, extend your top leg straight and slide it up the wall reaching towards the ceiling.

Follow with the other leg, bringing both legs up onto the wall, keeping the feet glued together. Bring the arms out into a “T” position and allow your hips to sink into your mat. This pose is great to get the blood flowing from your legs and feet back to your heart. It helps with circulation, and calms the body. Stay here for 2-5 minutes breathing deeply. To come out of this position, bend your knees in towards your chest and roll to one side.


Shavasana

Before falling asleep, take advantage of a peaceful moment for a brief meditation. Lay on your back with legs extended, slightly wider than hip distance apart, and your arms out at about 45 degrees. Breathe deeply and allow yourself to feel how relaxed you are after taking a few minutes to stretch and unwind after a long day. If you fall asleep in this pose, that’s alright, too!

Sweet dreams!

Author: Deanna Dorman, an ACE® certified personal trainer, Balanced Body® Pilates instructor, and NASM® Fitness Nutrition Specialist.

Source: http://blog.paleohacks.com/yoga-for-sleep

And be sure to check out the Self-help Health archive for more posts on yoga for weight loss, unkinking, a free yoga poses chart and more.

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

A Simple Kick-ass Remedy For The Flu?!

 

Here’s a simple remedy to help with the flu from Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel. Wish I’d known about it a couple of months ago. At the time I used large amounts of vitamin C and a number of other natural remedies that helped, but it would have been interesting to give this protocol a try. I already have bone broth and use food grade diatomaceous earth on a regular basis, and have supplements that have grapefruit seed extract as part of the formula, but don’t have it by itself, so I plan to add that to my “first aid” health kit.

 

 

A Kick Ass Flu Remedy

There’s a major  flu epidemic out there. Even people who don’t ordinarily get sick have found themselves seriously ill this winter with incapacitating headaches, fevers, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea and/or vomiting. It’s been so bad that people who say they would never see doctors, have been scared enough to head to hospital emergency rooms.

If that’s been you, this blog may give you the information you need to avoid a repeat episode. And if the flu hasn’t caught up with you yet, the suggestions in this blog can help you kick it back during the early stages.

This three-step protocol comes from my friend and colleague, Galen D. Knight, PhD, an independent researcher who has investigated the roles of vitalethine in immunological, infectious, autoimmune, and endocrine diseases. His flu protocol is simple, inexpensive and has worked for me and dozens of my clients and friends.

1. GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT

Start with a quality grapefruit seed extract.  My favorite brand is Wisdom of the Ages Advantage Liquid Concentrate.  You need less than a dropper full, which needs to be diluted about one to three with water. For an adult, this usually means about 15 drops in about a quarter cup of water.  Full-strength grapefruit seed extract will burn so keep it away from your eyes, ears and any mucous membranes.

The grapefruit seed extract alone may be sufficient, but you can also add St. John’s Wort, Elderberry syrup or other herbal and nutritional antivirals. Dr. Knight finds the ethanol forms to be the most effective and reports they can be added full strength without problems.

2. DIATOMACEOUS EARTH

Once you have successfully kept the grapefruit seed extract and the optional antiviral herbs down for half an hour, follow with a slurry of diatomaceous earth in water.  The dose is one tablespoon of food grade diatomaceous earth for every 100 pounds of body weight.  This product must be labeled “food grade” and suitable for human and pet use.  My favorite brand is Perma Guard Fossil Flour.  Another option is Wisdom of the Ages Toxiclenz, a product I’ve often recommended as part of detoxification programs.  It contains a mix of diatomaceous earth and inositol.

3. REST AND RECUPERATE

Allow your body to fully recover even if you start feeling better quickly.  Eat minimally but include lots of bone broth.  My absolute favorite ready-made broth is Lance Roll’s Flavor Chef.  No one does broth better than Lance.  And take care to get enough sleep, reduce stress and include fun in your life from now on!

WHAT TO EXPECT 

Many people find that symptoms such as dry heaves, vomiting and stomach upset are gone within an hour, provided this protocol is begun right away at the first onset of flu symptoms.

The antiviral herbs will help stop a sore throat.

The diatomaceous earth helps to absorb the often toxic die-offs created as the body fights the infection.

If the flu has already gone systemic in your body, it may take 24 to 48 hours to start seeing signs of recovery.  Don’t despair, as this is far better than being knocked out of circulation for a week or two.

Dr. Knight says his protocol has sometimes worked so quickly that people have set out for the doctor’s office only to recover en route, turn around and go home. “One can still go to the doctor if really concerned,” he says, “ but if started right away at the first signs of illness this often works so fast that you will be over it before you can make an appointment or go to urgent care and wait to see someone for help. Realize also, that when flu is epidemic, it is not a good time to sit in a waiting room full of hacking and coughing people.”

BE PREPARED 

Keep these natural remedies on hand as part of your natural first aid kit.  As Dr. Knight puts it, “It is very important to getting a jump on beating this before the flu pummels you and your family.”

Let me know how this works for you in the comments below.  And share your favorite tips too!

Source: http://drkaayladaniel.com/a-kick-ass-flu-remedy/?inf_contact_key=c2bb5d4d8eb06eb41ab370e52110c2c5b9e45d5d1599365fa1fd4693db91ad1e

And check out the power of quercetin for preventing and treating the flu, colds and other viral infections:

https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/02/26/quercetin-for-flu.aspx?

Related Self-help Health posts: Diatomaceous Earth: Great Multi-purpose Health Aid

Don’t Under-estimate The Power of Vitamin C

FYI, you can get vitamin C, quercetin, grapefruit seed extract, elderberry syrup, St John’s wort and other natural remedies at iHerb.com (use code CJG192 if you are a new customer and spend more than $40 and you will get money off your purchase). Plus, you can take advantage of their wonderful Trial Offer and Specials sections; there’s no sales tax, shipping is free on orders of $20 or more, and you get an extra 5% off on orders over $60.  

Vitacost.com is another one of my favorite on-line places to shop. Great discount prices, ever-expanding inventory, free shipping on $49 and up, and if you are a new customer and use the link on my website you will get a $10 off coupon with your first order of $25 or more. Woo-hoo! 

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Freeze Your Lemons?! YES!!

 

I actually heard about this awhile back, but am just now getting around to featuring an article on it.  I tell ya, the “lowly” lemon just continues to amaze me. It really is a superfood, when you think about it, and I’m so glad I love the taste and smell of lemons. I usually buy a bag of them a week,  organic of course!

What’s nice about this is it gives you a way for never wasting or letting a lemon go bad again. Got some that are already at they’re peak of ripeness, but you’re going out of town and can’t use them for awhile? No problem, just freeze them for later and use them like in this article!

And be sure to check out the Gary Parent video at the end of the post. Fascinating! Great visual reference.

 

(by Hesh Goldstein) When I got this from a friend, I was in utter disbelief. So, I go to Snopes and they back it up. So, In answer to the question, everyone should freeze lemons.

All kinds of people are saying that the entire lemon should be used with nothing wasted. How?

Simple, take a lemon, wash it, and then put it in the freezer. Once it is frozen you get whatever is necessary to grate or shred the whole lemon without even peeling it first.

Then sprinkle it on your salad, ice cream, soup, cereals, noodles, spaghetti sauce, or whatever. No holds barred. What you will experience is that whatever you sprinkle it on will take on a taste you may never have experienced before.

Why would I do this? Because the lemon peel contains 5 to 10 times more vitamins than the lemon juice itself and the peel is the part that is usually wasted. Not only that, but the peel helps to get rid of toxins in the body.

But wait, there’s more. Lemon is effective in killing cancer cells because it is allegedly 10,000 stronger than chemotherapy.

This has been revealed because there are people out there that want to make a synthetic, chemicalized version that will bring them huge profits. Shades of Monsanto.

The good news is that the taste of lemon is pleasant and does not deliver the horrific effects of chemotherapy.

What’s bizarre is that people are closely guarding this fact so as to not jeopardize the income to those that profit from other’s illnesses.

Another interesting aspect of the lemon is that it has a remarkable effect on cysts and tumors. Some say the lemon is a proven remedy against all types of cancer.

It doesn’t end there. It has an anti-microbial effect against bacterial infections and fungi; it is effective against internal parasites and worms; it regulates blood pressure which is too high; it acts as an anti-depressant; it combats stress and nervous disorders.

The source of this information, although not specifically named, is one of the largest drug manufacturers in the world. They further say that after more than 20 laboratory tests since 1970, the extracts revealed that it destroys the malignant cells in 12 cancers, including colon, breast, prostate, lung and pancreas and that the compounds of the lemon tree were 10,000 times more effective than the product Adriamycin, which is a drug normally used chemotherapeutically in the world to slow the growth of cancer cells.

Even more, this type of therapy with lemon extract only destroys malignant cancer cells and does not affect healthy cells.

The process is simple: *buy a lemon, wash it, freeze it, grate it, and put it on everything you eat.

It’s not rocket science. God puts stuff on the planet to keep the body healthy. The corporations hide this information and create synthetics to treat disease. The synthetic chemical creates other symptoms from its ingestion requiring another drug to combat these symptoms.

Source:  https://www.naturalnews.com/040574_freezing_lemons_lemon_juice_vitamins.html

* Always buy organic, especially since you are using the peel

Related Self-help Health post:  Lemons: They’re Not Just For Lemonade,  Don’t Throw Away The Peel!  Lemon Water = Better Than Lemonade

More on freezing lemons: http://www.healthyfoodteam.com/frozen-lemon-technique-could-fight-malignant-tumors-in-the-body-recipe/

Plus, check out this video posted on Gary Parent’s Facebook page on January 17th. It’s a great opportunity to see visually what lemon water can do and why it’s so powerful and beneficial for the body……

 

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to give Self-help Health a follow so you don’t miss out on future posts. Also check out the To Your Health page at my website Evolution Made Easier and my other blog for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Disclaimer: Please not that any information provided here is as a guideline only, and not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Happy 2018!! Yoga, Sugar Detox, Workout Routines, Weight Loss & More!

 

Here are some great ideas to help get your 2018 off on the right foot…..

 

First,  don’t forget to sign up for the free 21-day yoga challenge that I mentioned in a previous post…..

Picture

Vinyasa for Life with Schuyler Grant
Whether it’s your first or 500th downward facing dog, our 21-Day Yoga Challenge with Wanderlust co-founder Schuyler Grant gives you the building blocks for a lifelong, sustainable flow yoga practice.

Daily 20-minute classes alternate between workshops and juicy flows to apply what you’ve learned. We call this format Lab + Flow. Don’t worry, you’ll work up a sweat each day! Stabilize your core, align your spine, strengthen your shoulders, and learn how to carefully and artfully balance on your hands and feet.

By the end of three weeks you will have the tools to safely practice vinyasa yoga for life. Build a strong house for your soul to play in!

  • Combine a Lab day with its Flow day for a 45 minute practice.
  • Whether it’s your 1st or 500th down dog, the 21-Day Yoga Challenge is for you. It’s never too early to develop, or too late to revisit, tools to safely practice vinyasa yoga for life.
  • Each day you’ll receive an email with notes from Schuyler about the day’s flow and a link to the unlocked session. You can stream the class online, on Apple TV, and you can download the classes in the Wanderlust TV app for iPhone and iPad while the Challenge is live.

Sign up now for free! On January 1st the challenge will begin unlocking day-by-day.

 

Second,  check out this free series to help you with losing weight and giving up sugar…..

Picture

With sugar so prevalent in our food these days, the Free 7-Day Sugar Challenge was created to help people kick the sugar habit and live a healthier and happier life. This program appeals to all demographics regardless of age, gender, dietary preferences or location. . . just about everyone has struggled with too much sugar in their diet.​

During this week-long challenge, Marjory Wildcraft will be sharing her personal experiences on how she was able to ditch her sugar addiction and improve her mental and physical health. She offers participants key advice on how to navigate in a world where sugar is everywhere.

You can sign up for this free event that begins January 2nd here.

 

Third,  check this out for some short at-home workout ideas……

4 Short, At-Home Workouts You Can Fit Into Your Holiday Schedule

This time of the year it’s hard enough to find time to do laundry—let alone fit in a workout.

But guess what  . . .  You totally can! What these four workouts lack in duration they make up for in intensity. Whether you just have a few minutes to sweat it out or can dedicate a full 30 to kicking your own butt, these routines will give you the extra boost of endorphins you need to sail through the holidays with ease.  Go here to learn about 4 different routines….one for 5 minutes, another for 8, another for 10 and finally a 30 minute routine….something for everyone and every time schedule.

Or take the Plank Challenge that has come to be a regular part of my New Year’s shape-up kick-off for the last couple of years.

And the other day I was reminded of a post I did a couple of years ago about Superbrain Yoga. Had gotten out of the habit of doing the routine somewhere along the way, but when I re-watched the video about its many benefits, I immediately added it back into my daily time schedule. One unexpected side benefit, besides strengthening my leg muscles, is better sleep at night. I have been doing the exercise routine twice a day, in the morning and then at night before I take my shower and get ready for bed and have slept better than usual since starting it. Coincidence???? This simple and quick-to-do exercise has also been shown to help alleviate Alzheimer’s and dementia in seniors, as well as autism and Asperger’s in students. Just do it! 🙂

And finally, if you’re wanting to add muscle and lose fat, plus up your overall health quotient in the new year, then consider two products that I mentioned in my “favorite things” post the other day. I’ve always just used them for general health improvement, but recently got a newsletter with some pretty impressive information about how they can help with weight loss…..

Emerald Sea™ Organic Sea Vegetables

Emerald Sea™ contains a special blend of seven (7) certified organic sea vegetables, sustainably hand-harvested and carefully sun-dried to retain all the natural raw food benefits of these amazing plants.

When compared to plants that grow on land, Emerald Sea’s™ sea vegetables are 10 to 20 times higher in vitamins, minerals and amino acids. By taking just one or two capsules with your three daily meals, you will get the benefit and nutrients equal to taking 30 to 60 land-based vegetable capsules on a daily basis. You will drastically improve the number of whole-food nutrients in your daily diet.

Plus, these incredible plants support weight management like no other whole-food on the planet:

  • Targets Abdominal Fat: Chemists in Japan have found that certain species of seaweed   contain a compound that appears in animal studies to promote weight loss by reducing the accumulation of fat. A unique nutrient called Fucoxanthin achieved a 5 percent to 10 percent weight reduction in test animals. The compound targets abdominal fat, in particular, and may help reduce oversized guts, the scientists say.
  • Reduces Fat Absorption: Conclusive research has uncovered that special fibers found in certain species of seaweed can actually help to reduce our fat intake. The fibrous material called Alginate is said to have been proven to absorb greater levels of body fat than the majority of over-the-counter slimming treatments! Co-leader of the study, Dr. Brownlee of the University of Newcastle stated, “There are countless claims about miracle cures for weight loss but only a few cases offer any sound scientific evidence to back up these claims…these natural fibers can be incorporated into our diets easily”.
  • Supports Thyroid Function and Metabolism: Emerald Sea™ is a rich source of natural organic iodine, a vital nutrient for optimal thyroid function. “The healthy functioning of the thyroid is essential to maintaining metabolism and preventing the accumulation of body fat,” writes Burton Goldberg in Alternative Medicine.* “I believe that an insufficient intake of organic iodine in today’s modern diet has led to a   serious and chronic form of low-grade hypothyroidism,” writes Donald R. Yance, Jr. in Herbal Medicine, Healing and Cancer.*
  • Boosts Your Daily Nutrition: Emerald Sea™ is loaded with essential minerals, macro-nutrients, micro-nutrients, plant sterols, antioxidants, omega 3`s, omega 6`s, phytonutrients, enzymes, organic iodine and a host of many more power packed nutrients. Nourishing your body every day with all the trace minerals and other nutrients currently missing from your daily diet helps promote better overall health and wellness.

And Emerald Essentials’ Action Whey™ is a premium 100% NATURAL source of whey protein from grass-fed cows. It is designed to be convenient for any lifestyle, incredibly nutritious, and unbelievably delicious. At only 90 calories per serving, Action Whey™ is the perfect source of protein for any weight management program.

Action Whey™ has already been nationally recognized for its anti-aging and immune supporting nutrients. Endorsed by medical, health and fitness professionals, it also provides a multi-pronged attack against those stubborn pounds of excess fat:

  • Boosts Metabolism & Lean Muscle: Lean muscle burns fat for fuel. An increase in lean muscle will help increase your metabolism and melt away stubborn fat. Action Whey`s™ exclusive formulation is loaded with powerful muscle building nutrients. These nutrients will enhance the growth of lean muscle while helping to decrease body fat safely and naturally with no dangerous stimulants.
  • Suppresses Appetite: Action Whey™ is rich in an amino acid called Glycomacropeptide (GMP). GMP has been shown to stimulate intestinal hormones that tell your brain you are full. By suppressing appetite, the GMP found in Action Whey™ provides a built-in weight management benefit not found in other protein sources. This effect, combined with the outstanding taste of Action Whey™ , brings a sense of pleasure and satiety naturally helping curb compulsive cravings for refined carbs and sweets.
  • Preserves Muscle: Action Whey`s™ amino acid profile is almost identical to that of skeletal muscle. Specific amino acids like Cysteine and Glutamine are critical to preserving muscle mass, especially during exercise and weight loss programs. Preserving muscle will help maintain metabolism and benefit your overall health and appearance.

  • Low Glycemic: Diets based on low-fat foods that produce a low-glycemic response may enhance weight control because they promote satiety, minimize insulin secretion, and maintain insulin sensitivity. Studies have also shown that lowering the glycemic index and load of the first meal will result in decreased food consumption in the next meal.

  • Dietary Calcium: An accumulating body of evidence now suggests that dietary calcium plays a pivotal role in the regulation of energy metabolism and, consequently, reduces body weight and fat. Action Whey™ is a rich natural source of dietary calcium.

You can learn more about these products here and check out my What’s New page for details of the 25% off sale that Emerald Essentials is having right now.

 

Salud and Happy New Year!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

 

The Cancer-protective Power Of Aspirin! Who Knew?!

 

Wow, I found this information very interesting. I was already aware of how low-dosage aspirin is often prescribed to ward off the possibility of heart attacks and stroke, but had not heard about this aspect/benefit of taking it.  I would be inclined to use white willow bark myself, since I usually prefer the more natural way of addressing health issues, but to each his own. Just be aware that both forms of salicin come with contra-indications, so be sure it’s something your body wants and needs (use kinesiology or muscle testing to find out and/or check with your healthcare practitioner).
 –
FYI, I read where most white willow bark supplements have a recommended dosage of around 800 mg per day, but according to the University of Maryland Medical Center, 240 mg is sufficient to relieve headache pain. And, if researchers are right, this simple supplement should do wonders when it comes to keeping your inflammation levels down and chronic diseases at bay, plus help protect against certain cancers.
Aspirin

The cancer-protective power of aspirin

Yes, young people and middle-aged people get cancer. But if you live decades of your life cancer-free, the older you get, the higher your risk becomes, especially after 65.

Particularly gastrointestinal cancers, like colorectal, gastric, esophageal, liver and pancreatic cancer.

Does that mean you shouldn’t follow all the emerging advice on nutrition, exercise, diets and supplements to keep your body cancer free? It does not.

But when you make it into your senior years — because you did all of those other things — there’s one more thing you can do to reduce your risk of these cancers by almost 50 percent… and chances are your doctor may have already prescribed it…

A low-dose aspirin a day

Millions of seniors take a daily aspirin to ward off risk of heart attack and stroke. If you’re one of them, you have a head start on many of us…

That’s because studies over the last 20 years have brought to light that a daily aspirin may keep certain cancers away.

But the most compelling argument for aspirin’s cancer protection came from a 10 year study led by Professor Kelvin Tsoi from the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Professor Tsoi and his colleagues examined 618,884 participants with an average age of 67 years old, of whom 206,295 were daily aspirin users.

The aspirin users had been prescribed the drug for an average of 7.7 years, and the median dose prescribed was 80 milligrams.

According to the researchers, “Long-term use of aspirin showed 24 percent to 47 percent significant reduction on major cancers in the [gastrointestinal] tract.”

Specifically, those who took the aspirin daily were 47 percent less likely to have liver and esophageal cancer, 38 percent less likely to have stomach cancer, 34 percent less likely to have pancreatic cancer — and the risk of colorectal cancer among aspirin users was also lowered by 24 percent.

The powers that be felt so strongly about these results, in addition to the multitude of previous studies, that the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF), an influential federal advisory panel on disease prevention, “recommends initiating low-dose aspirin use for the primary prevention of [colorectal cancer] in adults aged 50 to 59 […] willing to take low-dose aspirin daily for at least 10 years.”

How does aspirin protect against these cancers?

Before the USPSTF makes the recommendation for a daily aspirin to the broader population, the researchers want a few questions answered starting with what is it about aspirin that may reduce these gastrointestinal cancers.

Could it have something to do with aspirin’s humble natural origins? If they find it does, I bet you won’t hear much about it, so let me fill you in…

You may have read a post by my colleague Jenny Smiechowski, titled, An herbal aspirin a day keeps disease at bay.

A precursor to the aspirin you know of today, available on any drugstore shelf, the leaves and bark of the white willow tree — known as herbal aspirin — were used to relieve pain and other health issues for almost 2,500 years.

The active ingredient in this centuries old medicinal remedy is salicin, which is naturally converted to salicylic acid in your body.

In a previous study, researchers from the Gladstone Institutes found that salicylic acid suppresses two key proteins in the body, p300 and CREB-binding protein (CBP). These two proteins control other proteins, including those responsible for inflammation and cell growth. Researchers found that by suppressing these proteins, salicylic acid prevents inflammation from damaging your cells — often a precursor to cancer. The researchers also found that the two proteins that were suppressed regulate another important protein—one related to leukemia.

And in another earlier study conducted by researchers at the University Of Miami Miller School Of Medicine, researchers found that a drug called diflunisal, which contains salicylic acid, stopped cancer from spreading and shrunk tumors in mice with leukemia.

Today’s aspirin

Now, the aspirin you find today on drugstore shelves is made of acetylsalicylic acid — a synthetic form of salicylic acid that is easily manufactured and doesn’t have to wait to be converted in your body, like the salicin found in the willow tree bark and leaves.

But, fortunately, like the ages-old version, it appears to be a potential ally in the fight against cancer.

If you’re not already taking a low-dose daily aspirin for your heart health, perhaps as a recommendation by your doctor, or for other reasons, just be sure you don’t have any health issue that would preclude you from doing so.

Aspirin can have its draw backs, including stomach bleeding and isn’t recommended if you have conditions such as active liver disease, a tendency to bleed, suffer from ulcers or bleeding in your digestive track and, of course, an allergy to aspirin. Young people under the age of 20 are advised not to take aspirin because of the threat of Reye’s syndrome, a condition that can result in death. All of this holds true for white willow bark supplements as well.

If you want to see if you’re a good candidate for a low-dose daily aspirin, run it by your doctor. Mainstream medicine relies on such medicines, so surprisingly this is one preventative measure that he probably won’t balk at.

Source: https://easyhealthoptions.com/cancer-protective-power-aspirin/

Looking for some great healthy/healing gift ideas for the holiday season? Then check out my website’s special holiday gifts page; there’s even some free gifts for YOU!

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.