Investigating Natural Body Cleanses

cleanses-articleDietary cleanses are a fantastic way to eliminate toxins from the body and give your system a rush of whatever it may be lacking. However, to approach a dietary cleanse with the intent to lose weight is not only ineffective but downright dangerous for your health. It is common for the body to shed pounds during a cleanse but whatever is lost will naturally return after the cleanse is finished.

As such, it is important to know the reason behind cleansing and the best methods for achieving your goals.

Cleanses by nature are meant to be short term. They are, in effect, ways of shocking your body out of its unhealthy dietary lethargy due to toxins and jump starting a healthy way of living with extraordinary amounts of nutrients. It is recommended for individuals to pursue a cleanse twice a year as a way to prepare for the oncoming season, once in the spring and once in the fall.

The following is an overview of a few different cleanses to get an idea of what you may want to practice.

Raw Food Cleanse

One of the most versatile styles of cleansing is that of a temporary raw food diet. Because there is a vast potential for a variety of raw meals, an individual can easily put together a balanced diet without compromising the quality of the cleanse.

The reason for a raw food cleanse revolves around digestive enzymes. When food has been cooked or processed, it diminishes the natural enzymes within those foods, which allow them to be easily digested. As a result, the body’s organs responsible for digestive enzymes such as the liver and pancreas are forced to compensate. Therefore a raw food diet is meant to give those organs a break while at the same time promoting a healthier intake of nutrients.

Juice Cleanse

Although juice cleanses are famous for their weight loss element, any pounds shed during this process come back afterward. To lose weight in a healthy manner, and keep that weight off, one must commit to a healthy diet and physically active lifestyle. But for a veritable tsunami of antioxidants and vitamins to increase metabolism and energy levels, a short-term juice cleanse is a healthy option.

While some people advocate a juice-only element to the cleanse, medical professionals insist that without the essential proteins, carbs, and fats, an individual may be endangering their health. Therefore it is recommended to add small amounts through servings of rice and snacking on vegetables throughout the day.

Colon Cleanse

Proponents of colon cleansing assert that the toxins in our diet and environment all end up in one place: our colon. This can lead to a variety of health problems from asthma to infection. As a way to counteract this, one may engage in a colon cleanse.

The colon is the final stretch of your digestive tract and removes water along with vitamins from digested materials. Therefore the colon cleanse consists of a short-term (as in no more than 3 days) liquid diet of fruits, vegetables, and plenty of water. The intended result is to flush out accumulated toxins from the colon while promoting the absorption of healthy nutrients.

Staying Healthy with Ginger

5344175_s-e1374614538290Ginger root has been valued for centuries for its medicinal uses in India and Asia. These days it is still used to treat a number of ailments throughout the world. Here is a rundown on some of the known health benefits of this delicious spice.

Inflammation
Inflammation is part of the body’s natural process for healing injury or illness. It causes heat and swelling to keep you from moving a damaged area while normal repair processes are taking place. Normally, as the body heals, inflammation dissipates, but in some conditions, such as heart disease, gallbladder inflammation, arthritis and diverticulitis, the inflammation does not recede. In this case, inflammation can become the underlying cause for many illnesses, and ginger is known for its impact on inflammation. Ginger contains two enzymes that play an important role in reducing inflammation. This is due to the presence of gingerols in the plant’s roots. These substances can be particularly useful in reducing symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Nausea
Ginger has been used to treat digestive disorders since the time of the Ancient Greeks. Many recent studies conducted in the United States have shown that ginger can reduce the effects of nausea produced by motion sickness or morning sickness. Ginger’s anti-emetic properties may also be beneficial for nausea caused by chemotherapy.

Diabetes
Each of your kidneys is composed of hundreds of structures called nephrons, which filter your blood and transport waste from your body. If you suffer from diabetes, the nephrons gradually thicken and become scarred. As this happens, the kidneys begin to leak protein into the urine. Clinical research indicates that this complication of diabetes and others, such as increased water intake and urine output may be alleviated by taking ginger. This spice may also protect nerves in diabetes sufferers and reduce blood fat levels.

Although more research is needed, ginger may also be useful in the treatment of the following disorders:
Bacterial diarrhea
Gout
Menstrual pain
Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Ulcers
Fungal infections
Headache
Swelling of the legs and feet

You should avoid ginger if you suffer from heart problems or a blood clotting disorder or if you are taking blood thinning medications. Talk to your doctor before taking ginger if you are pregnant or are considering becoming pregnant.

Natural Treatments for Summer Depression

2016-09-18_2216There are several causes for depression. Biochemical imbalance in the brain is the most common cause of physiological depression. Circumstances do not actually affect this type. It’s important for you to first figure out why you are feeling depressed. If you are having chronic pain or illness, or if the circumstances of your life make you unhappy, you might not be depressed. You might just be unhappy. That is a healthy emotional state if conditions warrant it. Your doctor can help you determine the cause by running some tests:

1. Thyroid gland tests
2. Adrenal gland tests
3. Sex hormone tests

For some people, certain seasons and weather changes make them more susceptible to sadness and/or depression. The Christmas holidays can be bad for some, if they are alone. Summer depression can be brought on by anything from disappointment that you didn’t lose the weight you wanted for swimsuit season, to lonesomeness, to not liking the heat and humidity. Summer depression could be discouragement about not being able to get away for a vacation.

Doctors can sometimes be quick to diagnose depression and prescribe anti-depressants. Anti-depressants are chemicals that often have side-effects. It amuses me when I hear a commercial for an anti-depressant that lists such possible side-effects as:

• Mood swings
• Sexual dysfunction
• Thoughts of suicide
• Loss or increase of appetite

I wonder… aren’t these the reasons you would take that medication?

Natural Treatment Options for Depression
Some people seek natural treatment options for their depression. I have some suggestions from Doctors Mehmet Oz.

• Don’t use supplements as a substitute for consulting your physician. Sometimes natural supplements, in themselves do not have side-effects, but may become dangerous when combined with some medications. Do not self-diagnose.
• Consume Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil. These essential fatty acids are serotonin-enhancing.
• St. John’s Wort, derived from plants, has been effective with mild to moderate depression.
• S- Adenosyl Methionine (commonly-called SAM or SAM-e) – This natural compound is produced by mammals. It can cause the brain to begin producing the right amounts of neurotransmitters. This literally can reverse psychological depression.
• Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural anti-depressants.
• Never skip a meal. Stable blood glucose levels decrease the occurrence of mood swings.
• Besides Omega-3, here are some other serotonin-enhancing foods you should include in your natural treatment options:

1. Healthy fats, such as coconut oil
2. Foods high in protein
3. You should avoid caffeine, however, as it lowers serotonin levels. For an energy boost, try 500 1000 mg. of L-Tyrosine.

• Get plenty of sunshine, which increases vitamin D.

Some other supplements that may help (with doctor’s approval)
• 5- HTP – You should use caution if you are taking prescribed anti-depressants, as there could be an adverse reaction.
• L- Theanine – This is found in green tea. In small doses, can be a mood elevator; however, in larger doses, can cause anxiety.

Meditation or yoga not only have physical benefits, but also settle the mind. But, if your natural treatment options do not make you feel better, you likely need anti-depressants. It also helps to talk with a professional, such as a life coach, therapist, or psychiatrist. Don’t be hard on yourself about it.

Natural Healing with Rosemary

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a perennial herb with dark green, narrow, needle-shaped leaves and woody 12534371_s-e1374589193780stems. The plant produces small purples flowers during the summer. Both the leaves and flowers emit an aromatic scent.

Rosemary is native to the Mediterranean, but is cultivated wildly throughout Europe and North America. It has been used for centuries as a decoration for festivals and weddings, as well as in incense to keep away bad influences. Rosemary has also been used in folk medicine for the treatment of colds, headaches, stomach pain and as a heart tonic.

Health Benefits of Rosemary

Rosemary is rich in vitamin A, and C, B-complex vitamins, folate, iron and potassium, and contains calcium, copper, magnesium and manganese. It is used throughout Europe and North America to flavor a wide range of dishes. It is also often used in herbal medicine for the treatment of indigestion, muscle and joint pain and to improve circulation. As a scalp massage, rosemary oil is sometimes used to promote hair growth. At least one study shows that subjects who massaged their scalps with a combination of rosemary, cedar wood, thyme and lavender oils showed a significant regrowth of hair compared to those who did not use the essential oils.

Rosemary in Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is the use of aromatic essential plant oils either in a carrier oil for massage, or added to baths. Essential of rosemary has a warm, pungent aroma and is one of the most popular oils in aromatherapy. It is said to be able to improve alertness, elevate the mood, and relieve pain. It also has antiseptic properties. Added to a steam inhaler, rosemary can help alleviate congestion and relive catarrh sinusitis. A rosemary facial wash can help revitalize and tone dull skin. In aromatherapy massage, rosemary essential oil can help relieve tension and relax sore muscles.

Rosemary blends well with a number of other essential oils, including tea tree, lavender, basil, lemon grass, thyme, black pepper, and peppermint.

Rosemary should not be used if you suffer from high blood pressure, epilepsy, or if you are pregnant.

Natural Remedies for Recurring Sinus Infections

sinus-infectionSinus infections are more of a nuisance than anything else. They can cause sore throats, runny noses, and an overall icky feeling. And if you have recurring sinus infections, then the problem just becomes worse. Fortunately, there are some natural home remedies that you can try to relieve the symptoms quickly and effectively.

Drink Plenty of Fluids

One of the reasons that a sinus infection stays around for awhile is because the mucus gets trapped in your sinuses. This creates a breeding ground for bacteria which can keep the infection around longer than it needs to be. You can help your body break up this mucus by drinking lots of water and other fluids.

Avoid Allergens

One of the best remedies for recurring sinus infections is to reduce your exposure to allergens that may cause this condition. Try to stay away from pollens, dust mites, pet dander and other things that can create mucus buildup in your sinuses and cause recurring sinus infections. Tobacco smoke is another common irritant, so try to avoid or minimize your exposure to cigarettes as well.

Aromatherapy

There are several aromas and scents that are known to help clear the nasal passages and congestion. Eucalyptus and rosemary are two aromas that are good for recurring sinus infections. You can boil a pot with a few drops of these types of aroma oils, and hold your face over the steaming pot with a towel over your head, so you can get a better concentration of the steam. You can also find vapor rubs with these aromas at many pharmacies and health food stores which may be easier and more convenient for you.

Garlic

Garlic is a great way to deal with many ailments, and recurring sinus infections are no exception. It has anti-bacterial properties in addition to other benefits that help promote good health. You can find garlic in pill form for optimal convenience, or you can simply eat it raw if you can make yourself get past the smell and the pungent taste.

Vitamin C

You can give your immune system a boost and fight those recurring sinus infections by taking Vitamin C. Orange juice and other fruit juices are full of this vitamin, or you can take it in supplement form. If taking Vitamin C supplements, you can ingest up to 3000 mg each day as long as you divide it into several doses.

These are just a few natural ways that you can deal with recurring sinus infections. But if your case is more severe, you should consult with your physician to see if there are other remedies or if your sinus problems are a signal of something more serious.

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