This review focuses on the role of zinc as an essential micronutrient that is required to mount an effective antiviral response. Although zinc possesses direct antiviral properties (e.g. influenza), it is also critical in generating both innate and acquired (humoral) antiviral responses.
Zinc is an essential trace element that is crucial for growth, development, and the maintenance of immune function. Its influence reaches all organs and cell types, representing an integral component of approximately 10% of the human proteome, and encompassing hundreds of key enzymes and transcription factors.
Zinc deficiency is strikingly common, affecting up to a quarter of the population in developing countries, but also affecting distinct populations in the developed world as a result of lifestyle, age, and disease-mediated factors. Consequently, zinc status is a critical factor that can influence antiviral immunity, particularly as zinc-deficient populations are often most at risk of acquiring viral infections such as HIV or hepatitis C virus.
This review summarizes current basic science and clinical evidence examining zinc as a direct antiviral, as well as a stimulant of antiviral immunity. An abundance of evidence has accumulated over the past 50 y to demonstrate the antiviral activity of zinc against a variety of viruses, and via numerous mechanisms.
The therapeutic use of zinc for viral infections such as herpes simplex virus and the common cold has stemmed from these findings; however, there remains much to be learned regarding the antiviral mechanisms and clinical benefit of zinc supplementation as a preventative and therapeutic treatment for viral infections.
In vitro studies suggest that free zinc may possess potent antiviral effects, and are supported by trials of creams, lozenges, and supplements with high free zinc content. Moreover, zinc-binding proteins such as the metallothioneins may possess antiviral roles, although their specific function remains uncertain.
Nonetheless, zinc treatment applied at a therapeutic dose and in the right form has the potential to drastically improve the clearance of both chronic and acute viral infections, as well as their accompanying pathologies and symptoms.
Consequently, the role of zinc as an antiviral can be separated into 2 categories: 1) zinc supplementation implemented to improve the antiviral response and systemic immunity in patients with zinc deficiency, and 2) zinc treatment performed to specifically inhibit viral replication or infection-related symptoms (75, 78–82, 83, 85–91, 95–101, 103, 104).
With new research, new products and new skin protection advice
popping up all the time, it is hard to figure out the best things
to do to improve and protect your skin.
A skin care program is the combination of skin care products and
a routine that will be most beneficial to the skin. You will
first need to consider your diet and type of life-style since
these two factors play an important role in the health of a
These days we seem to be living in the fast-food age and the
condition of your skin is often neglected. You still can’t beat
the old fruit and vegetable diet when it comes to good health and
a good complexion.
Remember to feed and nourish your skin by eating the proper foods.
Give your skin a drink too. Those eight glasses of water a day
your mom always told you to be sure to drink are essential to
maintaining your skin’s elasticity and suppleness, say experts.
And don’t count coffee or any of the caffeinated sodas as part
of the eight glasses because caffeine is dehydrating. The water
you choose can be sparkling water, mineral or straight from the
tap. Another suggestion is that you keep a liter-size bottle
close at hand, or simply drink a glass or two with your meals,
and a few in between.
You need to give some thought and consideration to the type of
makeup you sue. And be sure to clean your tools regularly.
Things such as cosmetic brushes get dirty and can carry bacteria
and germs and may cause skin irritations and breaking out. One
of the leading cosmetic authorities suggests that cosmetic brushes
be thoroughly cleaned at least twice a month. A good way is to
soak brushes for about 10 minutes in a dish of warm, soapy water
using mild liquid detergent or baby shampoo. Rinse and blot excess
moisture with a towel and stand the brushes, handle end down, in a
tall glass until they are thoroughly dry.
Keep environmental pollutants from being absorbed into the skin
with a good moisturizer that also acts as a skin barrier. Check
the labels for those with added Vitamin A, C and E, which help
block the penetration of pollutants.
A good exercise program such as aerobics can activate and
rejuvenate the skin and improve circulation and blood flow. Also,
body sweat triggers production of sebum, which is the skin’s own
One skin care expert has come up with a do-it-yourself version of
a treatment you may like to try. Stir the juice of half a lemon
into one cup of plain yogurt. Keep it in the refrigerator and
apply it as you would a cream every night before bed. You can
even apply a thin coat of moisturizer over it is you like, after
waiting about five minutes for the yogurt mixture to penetrate.
With consistent use, you should see more even pigmentation and
smoother skin in three to four weeks.
Get serious about stress reduction. Skin conditions such as acne
appear on many people who are stressed out, and chronic skin
conditions then to get worse. Set aside quiet time to meditate
or daydream. Be sure to get enough sleep. To avoid morning eye
or facial puffiness, sleep on your back so fluid doesn’t collect
there. And, you can keep the oil from your hair away from your
face by wearing a head covering or a soft headband when you go to
bed. And keep in mind that too much stress can affect your
overall health as well as your complexion.sk to get down to the
Hyaluronic acid is excellent for the skin as it’s a water loving molecule.
Most smokers sincerely want to quit. They know cigarettes
threaten their health, set a bad example for their children,
annoy their acquaintances and cost an inordinate amount of
Nobody can force a smoker to quit. It’s something each person
has to decide for himself, and will require a personal commitment
by the smoker. What kind of smoker are you? What do you get out
of smoking? What does it do for you? It is important to
identify what you use smoking for and what kind of satisfaction
you feel that you are getting from smoking.
Many smokers use the cigarette as a kind of crutch in moments of
stress or discomfort, and on occasion it may work; the cigarette
is sometimes used as a tranquilizer. But the heavy smoker, the
person who tries to handle severe personal problems by smoking
heavily all day long, is apt to discover that cigarettes do not
help him deal with his problems effectively.
When it comes to quitting, this kind of smoker may find it easy to
stop when everything is going well, but may be tempted to start
again in a time of crisis. Physical exertion, eating, drinking,
or social activity in moderation may serve as useful substitutes
for cigarettes, even in times of tension. The choice of a substitute
depends on what will achieve the same effects without having any
Once a smoker understands his own smoking behavior, he will be able
to cope more successfully and select the best quitting approaches
for himself and the type of life-style he leads.
Because smoking is a form of addiction, 80 percent of smoker who
quit usually experience some withdrawal symptoms. These may
include headache, light-headedness, nausea, diarrhea, and chest
pains. Psychological symptoms, such as anxiety, short-term
depression, and inability to concentrate, may also appear. The
main psychological symptom is increased irritability. People
become so irritable, in fact, that they say they feel “like
killing somebody.” Yet there is no evidence that quitting
smoking leads to physical violence.
Some people seem to lose all their energy and drive, wanting
only to sleep. Others react in exactly the opposite way, becoming
so over energized they can’t find enough activity to burn off their
excess energy. For instance, one woman said she cleaned out all
her closets completely and was ready to go next door to start on her
neighbor’s. Both these extremes, however, eventually level off.
The symptoms may be intense for two or three days, but within 10 to
14 days after quitting, most subside. The truth is that after people
quit smoking, they have more energy, they generally will need less
sleep, and feel better about themselves.
Quitting smoking not only extends the ex-smoker’s life, but adds new
happiness and meaning to one’s current life. Most smokers state that
immediately after they quit smoking, they start noticing dramatic
differences in their overall health and vitality.
Quitting is beneficial at any age, no matter how long a person has
been smoking. The mortality ratio of ex-smoker decreases after
quitting. If the patient quits before a serious disease has developed,
his body may eventually be able to restore itself almost completely.
Majority of addictions are caused by the DRD2 A1 allele gene
Being undermethylated (high histamine) can cause addictions to alcohol, drugs and cigarettes
Early life stress prenatal (in the womb) and postnatal (child abuse, moving a lot, etc) can lead to addictions
There is a thinking stuff from which all things are made, and which, in its original state, permeates, penetrates, and fills the interspaces of the universe.
A thought, in this substance, produces the thing that is imaged by the thought.
Man can form things in his thought, and, by impressing his thought upon formless substance, can cause the thing he thinks about to be created.
What the mind can conceive and believe it can achieve!
Every year, an estimated 7 million Americans suffer from cases
of foodborne illness. Some cases are violent and even result
in death. Of course this is commonly known as “food poisoning.”
The culprit is food that has dangerously high levels of bacteria
due to improper cooking or handling.
Food safety is usually taken for granted by the buying public but
everyone’s attention was recently directed to food poisoning
involving some meat that was undercooked. It was determined that
the problem never would have happened if the meat had been cooked
properly. E.Coli 0157.H7 is a potent virus, but it can be
completely destroyed when the meat is fully cooked.
It is important for consumers to take an all-around safety approach
to purchasing, storing and preparing both traditional and new meat
and poultry products. Ultimately, consumers and food handlers bear
the responsibility for keeping food safe once it leaves the store.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, about 85 percent
of foodborne illness cases could be avoided each year if consumers
would handle food properly. The most common foodborne illnesses
are caused by a combination of bacteria, naturally present in the
environment, and food handling mistakes. Ironically, these are
also the easiest types of foodborne illnesses to prevent. Proper
cooking or processing of raw meat and poultry kills bacteria that
can cause foodborne illness.
When you’re out, grocery shop last, take food straight home to the
refrigerator. And never leave food in a hot car! Don’t buy anything
you won’t use before the use-by date. Don’t buy food in poor
condition. Make sure refrigerated food is cold to the touch. Frozen
food should be rock-solid. Canned goods should be free of dents,
cracks or bulging lids which can indicate a serious food poisoning
The performance and maintenance of your refrigerator is of the
utmost importance. Check the temperature of your refrigerator with
an appliance thermometer. To keep bacteria in check, the refrigerator
should run at 40 degrees F; the freezer unit at 0 degrees F.
Generally, keep your refrigerator as cold as possible without
freezing your milk or lettuce.
When you prepare food, keep everything clean and thaw out any frozen
food you plan to prepare in your refrigerator. Take it out of the
freezer in advance and place it in the refrigerated section of your
refrigerator. Always wash your hands in hot soapy water before
preparing and handling any food as well as after you use the
bathroom, change diapers, handle pets, etc. Remember, too, that
bacteria can live in your kitchen towels, sponges and dish cloths.
Wash them often and replace the dish cloths and sponges you use
regularly every few weeks.
Be absolutely sure that you keep all raw meats, poultry and fish
and their juices away from other food. For instance, wash your
hands, your cutting board and knife in hot soapy water after
cutting up the chicken and before dicing salad ingredients. It is
best to use plastic cutting boards rather than wooden ones where
bacteria can hide in grooves. Don’t take your food out of the
freezer and leave it on the kitchen counter to thaw. This is
extremely dangerous since the bacteria can grow in the outer layers
of the food before the inside thaws. It is wise to do your
marinating in the refrigerator too.
Today the average duration of human life in the United States
is just about 70 years for women and a little less for men.
Conservative experts believe that man is really build to last
about 100 years; and that medical advances and more healthful
living habits could bring this about within a generation or two.
What good is it to add years to life if we do not also add life
to years? In fact, unless people learn to enjoy life and to
grow old gracefully, the extra years may be an additional burden.
From 18 to 30 years is roughly the period of highest physical
and mental vigor. The experiences we accumulate from the day we
are born help us to conserve and to use our physical and mental
abilities more wisely, so that for some time after 30 years we
are able to perform increasingly well in spite of slowly slipping
vigor. After age 50 the increasing accumulation of experience is
no longer able to offset the now more rapidly energy and therefore
aging begins to assert itself noticeably and in many ways.
A number of things may come about gradually such as people who have
not used eyeglasses before may at some time in their forties need
them for reading, and in the fifties they usually need bifocals.
Also in the forties, people are likely to put on weight because
there is a general slowdown in the oxidation rate of the aging body
tissue. Also we tend to do less strenuous work with no reduction
in the amount of food consumed.
And in the fifties there is likely to be some loss of hearing.
Usually the high-pitched tomes go first, so words with the sounds
of F, S, and TH are confused. A hearing aid may be needed in
Aging is generally accompanied by a loss in physical and mental
flexibility. This is noticed in a tendency to become stiff in the
joints; in slower comeback after a strenuous trip, excessive “night
life,” or hard work; in slower healing of wounds, sore muscles,
and sprains; in slower recovery of pep after an illness; and in
greater difficulty to adjust to new people, new places, and new
Men, especially, will notice loss of muscular strength. There will
be increased unsteadiness and delicate muscle movements will be more
clumsy and the stride in walking will become shorter. The conclusion
now is that the performance and ability of the elderly has long been
underestimated and can be greatly improved by a proper diet, sleep
and exercise along with rest and relaxation.
Many elderly people tend to lose their joy and will to live and
chronic worriers may mope around and withdraw. Medical authorities
now say that laughter is one of the best medicines for the elderly.
You can always keep your sense of humor tuned up by surrounding
yourself with pleasant and interesting people. Just act your age
and don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself even when no else is around.
Now that we all know the role that physical activity plays in our
lives, remember to do something physical every day. The joints must
be used or quite simply they will tighten with age creating that
stooped worn out appearance we so often associate with getting old.
Keep yourself flexible and fit on an exercise program consistent with
It turns out that happiness is actually a habit that can be cultivated by developing a few habits that take only about five minutes to do. By themselves none of these will change your life but each one will give you a little dopamine (the happiness neurotransmitter) boost that will add up with each successive practice.
There are scads of methods but here are 7 that I find to be most simple and most effective.
1) Do something for someone else.
Do what my colleague Adam Grant calls a “five-minute favor” for someone. Five-minute favors are selfless giving acts, without asking for anything in return from the people that you help. Examples of five-minute favors include: sharing knowledge, making an introduction, serving as a reference for a person, product, or service, or recommending someone on LinkedIn, Yelp, or another social place. It simply feels good to do something for someone else!
2) Put yourself in someone else’s shoes.
Empathy and compassion are things you can develop, and it starts with thinking about other people’s circumstances, understanding their pains and frustrations, and knowing that those emotions are every bit as real as our own. This helps you develop perspective, and opens you up to helping others, which also enhances your sense of gratitude.
3) Look at people in the eye, smile, and say hello.
We live in such a fear-driven and insulated culture that we don’t even look people in the eye when we’re walking down the street, sitting in subway trains, or even when making our way through office hallways. Just for today, think of strangers as being a little more like you, and treat them with the kindness and respect they deserve: Look them softly in the eye, smile, and give a warm greeting. I live in a very urban area and the last couple of years I’ve made it a practice to say “hi” to most people I walk by. Some ignore me but most look surprised and smile and say “hi” back. I’ve gotten to know people on a casual basis that I otherwise never would and it has made my neighborhood feel much warmer and homey.
4) Be the first to reach out after an argument.
The tendency for many is to let resentment fester after an argument or misunderstanding, and then cut off the person from our lives until he or she reaches out to us with an apology. It’s convenient. But it’s also just plain dumb. How uncomfortable is it to be in your home while you and your partner or kids are barely acknowledging one another? Outside the home you could lose a friendship, a family relationship, or great work connection because your ego has to have it’s way and you have to “win” or prove some point. Instead, be the first to reach out to make amends, even if you’re the one that has to apologize. That humble act will do wonders; the other person will soften, apologize, and allow you back into his or her life.
5) Journal about three new things you are grateful for.
For survival purposes your brain is built to remember negative or painful things much more readily than positive things. This works great for survival but not so great for a happy life. Research has shown that simply writing three things that you are grateful for every day teaches your brain to more readily tune into the good things in your life. This will greatly enhance your mood and overall sense of happiness and well being.6) Exercise for 15 minutes.
Research has shown that just 15 minutes of fun cardio activity is the equivalent of taking an antidepressant, but with a 30 percent lower relapse rate! If you don’t have a routine in place there are apps that you can download to your phone that will lead you through simple but fun routines that only take anywhere from 8 – 20 minutes to do. If you’re the kind of person who doesn’t like exercise routines get out and throw a Frisbee or ball around with your kids or partner. Dance, play with your dog, go for a very fast paced walk. It doesn’t have to be exercise in the traditional sense – just move your body in a way that works best for you!!7) Find something or someone that will make you laugh.
Laughter releases endorphins into the body—a chemical 10 times more powerful than morphine—with the same exhilarating effect as an intense workout at the gym. Try putting a comedy channel on the radio when you’re in the car. If you don’t have satellite radio there are comedy channels on Spotify, iTunes and virtually every other music platform available. If you’re working or doing chores around the house put on a stand up routine for you to listen to in the background. Even if you’re not able to focus on it the sound of laughter in the background will enhance your mood and make you feel better. Try it, it really works!
Allergy Research Phospholipid Colostrum is obtained from healthy, grass-fed cows, within the first 16 hours after birthing. It has an added natural phospholipid coating (liposomal) from sunflower lecithin, for enhanced protection, dissolution, and absorption.
* It is tested to be free of antibiotics and growth hormones.
Women who are pregnant, wishing to become pregnant, or breastfeeding should use only under the supervision of a qualified healthcare practitioner.
Store in a cool, dry place, tightly capped.
Servings Per Container: 60
As a dietary supplement, 1 scoop (5 g) one or two times daily, or as directed by a healthcare professional.
Science is showing that chronic inflammation is at the root of nearly every disease. Inflammation is linked to everything from metabolic disorders, like obesity and diabetes, to neurodegenerative diseases and cancer.
How Does Colostrum Work?
Colostrum is highly beneficial in the unique manner in which it provides the body with its numerous immune and growth factors. Most infectious disease-causing organisms enter the body through the mucous membranes of the intestinal tract.. In order to remain healthy, it is critical that we are able to combat disease-causing organisms, such as bacteria and viruses or as well as environmental toxins, contaminants and allergens where they attack us.
Clinical research by Dr. David Tyrell in England, published in 1981, revealed that a high percentage of the antibodies and immunoglobulins present in colostrum are believed not to be absorbed but remain in the intestinal tract where they attack disease-causing organisms before they can penetrate the body and cause disease. The remainder are absorbed and distributed to assist in our internal defense processes. It is this combination of action that makes colostrum so unique and effective as an oral supplement.
Healing the gut
Another critical action of colostrum’s growth factors, epithelial growth factor (EGF) in particular, is to heal and prevent damage to the lining of the gastrointestinal tract by maintaining integrity of tight junctions. The delicate lining between the GI tract and the bloodstream is one cell thick and, because it is permeable, it allows nutrients from food to gain access to the body.
The downside is that the lining can become hyperpermeable when the tight junctions loosen. This condition, commonly referred to as “leaky gut syndrome” or “leaky gut,” allows larger, partially digested food proteins, disease-causing microbes and toxins to enter the body as well. Once inside the bloodstream, the immune system recognizes these substances as foreign and mounts an inflammatory response against them. If the ensuing inflammation becomes chronic, the immune system may mistakenly attack healthy cells, which over time can lead to tissue destruction and autoimmune conditions.
Damage to the gut lining can be caused by a variety of factors, including NSAIDs, prescription pain medications, antibiotics, birth control pills, glyphosate, GMOs, poor lifestyle choices i.e., chronic alcohol use and environmental toxins. Damage can be compounded by an unhealthy microbiome in which beneficial bacteria are unable to keep pathogenic bacteria in check.
Colostrum’s immunoglobulins, antibodies, lactoferrin and other immune-modulating components can help maintain a healthy microbiome. When the GI lining is strong and the microbiome is healthy, the body can make good use of the foods and nutrients consumed and help maintain an optimally functioning immune system. Bovine colostrum is the only natural substance that has been clinically proven to heal damage to the intestinal lining and prevent intestinal hyperpermeability.
Bovine colostrum contains more than 200 growth factors and immune-modulating components (such as the aforementioned PRPs) that function synergistically to help the immune system do its job more effectively. PRPs can stimulate an underactive immune system to seek out and destroy viruses and bacteria to prevent infection. They can also tone down an overactive immune system, such as in the case of autoimmune conditions, to prevent further damage caused by excessive inflammation.
Note that when prescribing bovine colostrum as an adjunct therapy, for it to be effective its healing components must be bioavailable. The infant’s digestive system does not contain harsh stomach acids the way an adult’s digestive system does. The immature GI tract plus the natural lipid coating on mother’s colostrum guarantees maximum benefit for the infant.
But when raw, fresh bovine colostrum is processed into powder form, it loses the lipid coating that otherwise protects it from being digested in the adult’s stomach, and it becomes more like powdered milk. Thus, it is critical that the lipid coating be restored. The reapplication of lipids preserves the growth factors and immune-modulating components, making it as close to raw, fresh colostrum as possible.
Colostrum Meets the Microbiome A Tried and True Remedy for Gut Health Takes Centre Stage
The microbiome is one of the most exciting discoveries of 21st century biomedicine, and scientific heavyweights as prominent as Craig Ventner, whose company sequenced the human genome, are now sequencing the microbiome.
The microbiome is the ecological community of commensal, symbiotic, and pathogenic microorganisms that literally share our body space–the mass of trillions of microbes that live on and in your body. Most of them are in your large intestine, but they thrive in your mouth, on your skin, and even in your bloodstream.
The human gut contains on average: 40,000 bacterial species, 9 million unique bacterial genes and 100 trillion microbial cells. These hundred trillion microbes render us a walking, breathing ecosystem–more microbe than man.
Research on ancient and modern microbiomes is uncovering new insights into the fluid and ever-changing composition of our resident bacteria. An intact “microbial tomb” was found on teeth from humans buried in Pompei over a thousand years ago. Fossilized fecal samples from medieval times are being analyzed, and scientists are even going to sequence the microbiomes of identical twin astronauts up in space, to see how low gravity and diet might affect it.
The Human Food Project in Tanzania is sampling the gut microbiome of hundreds of Hadzabe hunter-gatherers, whose diet is so different than that of most individuals in developed nations.
Why such interest in the microbiome? Because the microbes we cohabit with, particularly those of the gut, help regulate human health and wellbeing, and even influence the brain, neurological function, and behavior. New research shows that beneficial bacteria in our microbiome may help us fight infection anywhere in the body. In fact, gut microbes help our bodies develop immune
And that brings us to colostrum: Mother Nature’s first food for the developing microbiome in all mammals, our earliest and most potent influence on gut health and bacterial composition.
Colostrum provides a cornucopia of nutrients, immunoglobulins, passive antibodies, and signaling peptides that Mother Nature has perfectly honed to protect the newborn infant from infection, and to help train and shape the emerging immune system so it can handle its environment. Ingesting colostrum establishes beneficial bacteria in the neonate’s digestive tract.
“Research shows that colostrum can restore a leaky gut lining to normal permeability levels, and reduce movement of toxins and gut microbes into the bloodstream.”
Colostrum contains immunoglobulins such as IgG, IgA, IgM; the immune modulating molecule lactoferrin; fat-soluble vitamins including retinol, tocopherol, and beta-carotene; water soluble vitamins including niacin, thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin B12, pyridoxal, pyridoxamine, and pyridoxine; and minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, iron, copper and manganese.
It contains whey proteins, oligosaccharides, immunoglobulins, growth factors including IGF-1, IGF-2, TGFbeta and EGF, prolactin, and insulin. Fresh colostrum also contains both essential and non-essential amino acids, enzymes, and commensal bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium. Finally, colostrum contains a rich array of novel, potent signaling peptides called proline-rich peptides (PRPs).
Colostrum helps the newborn gut develop a healthy microbiota. When our gut ecology becomes imbalanced, we experience dysbiosis. Then the delicate gut lining and associated lymphoid tissue becomes inflamed, leading to altered levels of permeability.
That increased permeability can then result in microbial translocation–or the movement of toxins and gut microbes through the normally tight epithelial barrier of the gastrointestinal tract into the bloodstream. Microbial translocation has been implicated in the pathogenesis of HIV, cirrhosis, atopic dermatitis and many other conditions.
Decreased permeability can lead to altered absorption of essential food components, a thickening of the lining, loss of the local villi and subsequent activation of the innate lymphoid cell, as bacteria have direct contact to the lining because of loss or decreased functionality of the mucus layer.
Research shows that colostrum can restore a leaky gut lining to normal permeability levels. The immunoglobulins in colostrum are especially impressive at combating gut pathogens, including H. pylori, E. coli and protozoan parasites and amoebas. Antimicrobial effects are likely due to the presence of the antibody (immunoglobulin) complement system.
In addition, research by David Tyrell, MD, in 1980, suggested that a high percentage of antibodies and immunoglobulins present in colostrum remain in the intestinal tract, where they attack pathogens.
A recent study on bovine colostrum suggested that it is a potential source of anti-infective glycans which might limit Campylobacter jejuni infection, the leading cause of acute bacterial infectious diarrhea in humans. Researchers found that bovine colostrum dramatically reduced the cellular invasion and translocation of C. jejuni, in a concentration dependent manner. Bovine colostrum also completely prevented C. jejuni binding to chicken intestinal mucin, in vitro.
Bovine colostrum can restore the damage caused by anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to the gut lining. For instance, the anti-inflammatory NSAID indomethacin when used alone causes a three-fold increase in gut permeability. But when taken with colostrum by healthy volunteers, there is no increase in gut permeability. Researchers concluded that bovine colostrum may provide a novel approach to the prevention of NSAID induced gastrointestinal damage in humans.
In another study, researchers determined that bovine colostrum is a rich source of tissue repair and growth factors, and limits gastrointestinal injury. Feeding with colostrum facilitated growth of the intestinal villi, assisting with the restoration of barriers that have become impermeable as well as too permeable. Only the colostrum casein fraction stimulated intestinal villus elongation, whereas the whey fraction and mature milk casein showed no such effect. Colostrum has therapeutic potential for intestinal inflammation.
“New research shows that beneficial bacteria in our microbiome may help us fight infection anywhere in the body.”
Colostrum enemas were effective in the treatment of distal colitis during a randomized, double-blind study. Fourteen patients with a mean age of 45 and mild to moderately severe distal colitis, were given colostrum enema or placebo enema for 4 weeks. Both groups also received the drug mesalazine.
The colostrum group showed a mean reduction in symptom score of 2.9, while the group only on medication showed an increase of 0.5. Symptoms improved in five of the eight patients in the colostrum group and in two of the six patients in the placebo group. The researchers concluded that bovine colostrum enemas may be a novel adjunctive therapy for left-sided colitis along with standard treatment with anti-inflammatory drugs such as mesalazine.
Lactoferrin is one of the main proteins in colostrum. High quality supplemental colostrum has over 1%. Lactoferrin binds free iron, which many bacteria and fungi need to reproduce. Lactoferrin can penetrate the cell wall of bacteria, which allows an antimicrobial enzyme in gastric secretions calls lysozyme to then enter the cell and cause it to burst. Together, lactoferrin and lysozyme can destroy Candida albicans.
We know that nutrients are absorbed along the length of the small intestine, which is lined with millions of microscopic, finger-like projections called villi. Each villus is connected to a mesh of capillaries so that nutrients can pass into the bloodstream.
Colostrum extract that contains bioactive components such as insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I), enhances intestinal villus size and can modulate neonatal gastrointestinal tract development and function. Villus circumference and height in the small intestine, as well as epithelial cell proliferation, are higher in calves fed colostrum extract than in controls.
According to a review article in 2011 on colostrum, a commercial product which is made from large standardized pools of colostrum collected from over 100 cows has been used to treat a number of diseases, including diarrhea caused by diarrheagenic E. coli. Bovine colostrum contains significant antimicrobial properties as a result of natural exposure of the cows to antigens of pathogens that may afflict humans as well.
All colostrum and milk will contain some secretory IgA. The presence of secretory IgA in the intestinal lumen is part of the protective function of the epithelial barrier in the intestine and also plays an important role in maintaining ecological tolerance with the commensal bacteria.
Milk and colostrum secretory IgA in the intestine will bind bacteria, toxins and other macromolecules, limiting their ability to bind to intestinal cells and thereby be transported through the mucosa to cause a systemic immune response. The mature stomach lining of an adult is of course more effective in digesting proteins and peptides than that of a newborn infant.
Fresh bovine colostrum has a natural phospholipid coating that enhances its properties, but this is lost during the processing of colostrum into a powder form. New research by biochemist Michail Borissenko, BSc, MSc, chief scientist at the Institute of Colostrum Research in New Zealand, suggests that coating bovine colostrum with high quality phospholipids during processing helps to make it more soluble and preserve it until it reaches the large intestine.
Although bovine colostrum is generally well tolerated, colostrum with the phospholipid coating restored may possibly increase tolerance and benefit for sensitive individuals. Colostrum and phospholipids together might provide an ideal and stable source of the ultimate “mother’s milk” for healing the gut and restoring a healthy microbiome.
Today I’m going to give you information on this very important hormone and how to get your levels checked for less than $50! CLICK HERE!
Yes Vitamin D is actually a hormone that has many important functions to your health. I’m going to post highlights from some of the published studies shown at the bottom of this page.
Optimal levels of 60-80 ng/mL is based on the reports done by Dr. Gominak M.D. a Neurologist on over 5000 patients. It has been a very consistent observation for more than 7 years of testing. Most patients test an average of 3-4 times per year in order to keep their sleep at its best.
Hormone D is made from the sun UVB light. When your skin is exposed to sunlight, it makes vitamin D from cholesterol. The sun’s ultraviolet B (UVB) rays hit cholesterol in the skin cells, providing the energy for vitamin D synthesis to occur. There is no UVB light in the winter months.
What you will need to have, in order to use vitamin D safely, is a blood test called the vitamin D3 25 OH blood level. In the past our vitamin D blood level fluctuated with the seasons, high in summer, low in winter. Because humans are hairless we developed our own sunscreen (melanin) to block the sun and the formation of D. In the summer, as we stay in the sun day after day we make vitamin D but we also make a tan, which blocks the formation of more D, regulating the amount we make.
Most people can make 20,000 IU of vitamin D on a summer day, lying by the pool in a bathing suit. Darker-skinned people need longer sun exposure to make the same amount of D. There are break- down processes in the skin that prevent the D blood level from rising above 80 ng/ml from just sun exposure. So that level appears to be the “natural” upper limit. Supplementing vitamin D as a pill can easily take the D blood level above 80 ng/ml and it turns out that a D level over 80 usually makes sleep worse.
Darker skinned people have a harder time converting UVB rays into Hormone D. Melanin reduces the penetration of UVB and thus contributes to vitamin D insufficiency in individuals with darker skin.
Your Vitamin D blood level it should be tested by using D3 25 OH, (LCMS technique, not immunoassay) and not the D 1,25 OH level.
Vitamin D deficiency has again become a major public health interest with its association with osteoporosis, osteomalacia, fractures, and more recently with prevention of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and other chronic illnesses.
Regular sun exposure has decreased due to changing lifestyles. Vitamin D deficiency is especially prevalent in dark skinned children and adults living in Northern latitudes, and obese children and adults.
Improving the vitamin D status worldwide would have dramatic effects on public health, and reduce healthcare costs for many chronic diseases. The most cost-effective way to remedy this deficiency is to increase food fortification with higher levels of vitamin D along with sensible sun exposure, and adequate vitamin D supplementation.
INDICATIONS FOR VITAMIN D TESTING
Patients diagnosed with any of the Vitamin D related diseases (cancer, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus erythematosus, depression, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, epilepsy, and other others)
Patients with osteoporosis or rickets
Persistent and nonspecific musculoskeletal pain
Signs of depression or lack of energy
Patients with gastrointestinal disease and/or who have had a cholecystectomy
Patients having problems sleeping
Overweight individuals with a BMI >25
Infants that are exclusively breastfed or children without a well-balanced diet
Individuals taking Vitamin D supplementation greater than 50 mcg (2,000 IUs) per day
Individuals that reside above 42 degrees north latitude (a line approximately between the northern border of California and Boston)
Individuals with medium to dark complexions or who do not regularly receive 20 minutes of direct sunlight each day
The Vitamin D Deficiency Pandemic: a Forgotten Hormone Important for Health https://publichealthreviews.biomedcentral.com/track/pdf/10.1007/BF03391602
Vitamin D as an effective treatment approach for drug abuse and addiction https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2251729413000050
The Possible Role of Vitamin D in Suppressing Cytokine Storm and Associated Mortality in COVID-19 Patients https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.08.20058578v3
Scientific Documentation of the Relationship of Vitamin D Deficiency and the Development of Cancer https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19817700/
The Role of Vitamin D in Cancer Prevention https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470481/
Vitamin D deficiency puts you at much greater risk for cancer — there’s more https://www.ksat.com/sponsored/2019/10/17/vitamin-d-deficiency-puts-you-at-much-greater-risk-for-cancer-theres-more/
The world epidemic of sleep disorders is linked to vitamin D deficiency https://drgominak.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Med-Hypoth-vitamin-d-sleep-gominak.pdf
Vitamin D deficiency changes the intestinal microbiome reducing B vitamin production in the gut. The resulting lack of pantothenic acid adversely affects the immune system, producing a ‘‘pro-inflammatory” state associated with atherosclerosis and autoimmunity https://drgominak.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Med-Hypoth-2nd-article.pdf
Vitamin D Is Not as Toxic as Was Once Thought: A Historical and an Up-to-Date Perspective https://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(15)00244-X/abstract
Vitamin D for prevention of respiratory tract infections https://www.who.int/elena/titles/commentary/vitamind_pneumonia_children/en/
New evidence that vitamin D prevents respiratory infections https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/315886
Vitamin D reduces respiratory infections in older, long-term care residents. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161116103005.htm
Association Between Vitamin D Deficiency and Allergic Diseases https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4975286/
Vitamin D: modulator of the immune system. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20427238
The Vitamin D Epidemic and Its Health Consequences https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16251641
Vitamin D Deficiency: A Worldwide Problem With Health Consequences https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18400738/
Low Vitamin D Raises Mortality Risk in Nursing Home Patients https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/760055
Vitamin D: Nutrient, Hormone, and Immunomodulator https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30400332
The enzyme monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) serves a function in youth by keeping neurotransmitter levels from elevating too high. As we age past 45 years, however, MAO-B levels begin a steady rise that results the depletion in dopamine seen in elderly individuals.
MAO-B also may inflict toxic damage to brain cells via several well-defined mechanisms.
Excess MAO-B not only deprives us of our youthful emotions by depleting dopamine, but also impairs cognitive functions by decreasing acetylcholine while simultaneously accelerating brain aging.
People today should take steps to suppress MAO-B levels as they age past 45 years
Monoamine Neurotransmitters Include:
Natural Products Screening for the Identification of Selective Monoamine Oxidase-B Inhibitors:
1. Amur Cork Tree (Phellodendron Amurense)
MAO-B Inhibition Very High (IC50 <.07 mg/ml)
Amur cork tree is one of the 50 fundamental Chinese herbs. It’s commonly used for it’s sedative, muscle relaxant, antiarrhythmic, positive inotropic, hypotensive, and antibacterial actions.
Phellodendron amurense (aka Amur cork tree; family Rutaceae) is a meagerly investigated Chinese medicinal plant. In our study, its bark ethanolic extract clearly was a selective hMAO-BI as its potent inhibition was previously spectrophotometrically confirmed .
The plant constituted alkaloids such as phellodendron, palmatine, jatrorrhizine, and berberine [42,43] where the later displayed safe antidepressant-like activities in mice by the possible mechanism MAO-A inhibition and increasing DA, NE and serotonin brain levels [44,45].
PAB is high in the flavone tetramethyl-o-scutellarin, and the triterpenoids limonoids . Limonoid obacunone was found neuroprotective in glutamate-induced neurotoxicity in vitro .
In clinical studies, PAB extract supplement safely reduced cortisol , and relieved mild anxiety in women . Also, PAB inhibited pro-inflammatory cytokines [49,50] and protected from prostate tumors progression , property found in some MAO-AIs .
Based on our results and literature, there is a lack of knowledge on MAO-B inhibition and selectivity benefits of PAB extracts and phytochemicals. Further studies on PABEE as MAO-BI source for PD are highly recommended.
Gan Cao is a type of licorice (same genus), and is used in much the same way. Its traditional uses involves female disorders, digestive disorders, ulcers, and heart arrythmias. One of the most interesting sue of this plant, is as a “harmonizer” of other medicinal plants.
In Chinese traditional medicine this is one of the main herbs used in formulas for its ability to improve the outcomes of other plants.
The roots of Glycyrrhiza uralensis (aka Chinese licorice; family Leguminosae) is another commonly used medicinal plant in traditional Chinese and natural medicine. Our new finding that GUREE inhibits hMAO-B selectively is supported by our previous finding for its hMAO-B inhibition .
Interestingly, GUR was more selective than Glycyrrhiza glabra in our screen. Reported Glycyrrhiza uralensis different active constituents from other Glycyrrhiza genuses may influence its MAO-B selective inhibition . GUR contains unique phytochemicals including isoprenylated phenolics  flavonoids, chalcones, and triterpene saponins .
Chalcone isoliquiritigenin, is an inhibitor for MAO-B  with multifunctional anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, cytoprotective  cellular detoxification system activator  and anti-apoptotic  anti-amyloid-β toxicity  neuroprotective properties. GUR total flavonoid extracts showed neurogenesis protective effect in depressed rats model .
The flavonoid liquiritin showed antioxidant and antiapoptotic neuroprotective effects in mice  and ameliorated depression in rat model . Its benzopyran dehydroglyasperin-C also showed neuroprotection . Xiao Yao San, a traditional herb combination containing GUR for chronic depression, was effective in both animal models and clinical trials [65,66].
Other multifunctional properties of GUR constituents included reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines, nitric oxide, reactive oxygen species, lipid peroxidation , and mitochondrial impairment . Interestingly, GUREE reports covered its chemopreventive  and anti-diabetic properties . Therefore, specifically investigating GUREE as a selective MAO-BI could be beneficial.
Psoralea fruit is a lesser known Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese medicinal plant species. It was used in the past for conditions like vitiligo and other skin related conditions. Recently it has received a lot of attention for its MAO inhibiting properties, and is suggested to be a norepinephrine, re-uptake inhibitor.
In addition, the seeds of Psoralea corylifolia (aka, Bu Gu Zhi or Babchi; family Leguminosae) are important in traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines . PCSEE was one of the most potent and selective hMAO-BI using our fluorometric screening assay.
Our PCS findings are supported by our previous investigations on its hMAO-B inhibitory potency tested spectrophotometrically , and its selectivity for hMAO-B using a luminescence assay .
Previous PCS screened extracts for active constituents revealed that the ethanolic extract composes more medically active compounds than some other PCS extracts, which makes it a better candidate for novel phytomedicines .
PSCEE is rich in benzopyrone structure constituents including coumarins and flavonoids. PCS furocoumarins psoralen and isopsoralen showed rat MAOs activities inhibitions , which were supported by total furocoumarins potent antidepressant effects on mice . PCS also contains isoflavones, which have been used as dietary supplements in various diseases, including osteoporosis, cognitive dysfunction, cardiovascular disease, and inflammation , which are close to PCS multifaceted properties [33–35].
We previously investigated bavachinin and genistein flavonoids constituents of PCS. Bavachinin exhibited a selective hMAO-B inhibition  while isoflavone genistein was similarly potent but less selective against hMAO-B .
Moreover, PCSEE contains monoterpenes that protected against the MAO-B substrate 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) SN cell damage and MPTP-induced motor deficits in PD model , inhibited DA and norepinephrine (NE) transporters , and showed antidepressant effects with catecholamine neurotransmitters regulation [39,40].
The PCS extracts were also neuroprotective against the MPTP precursor MPP+  and the nitropropionic acid (3-NP) induced cytotoxicity and mitochondrial dysfunction .
Although the seeds are used in dermatological disorders health supplements  and increasingly investigated on in vitro and animal models, the extract and its phytochemicals clinical effects on degenerative diseases are yet to be clinically considered.
From our results, the observed association between PCS constituents MAO-B inhibitions and the extracts neuroprotection in the previous reports suggests more investigations for potential beneficial PCS phytochemicals for PD.
This resin has been used as a spice and a phytomedicine around the globe for centuries. In the folklore medicine, it is mostly used in asthma, gastrointestinal disorders, and neuronal disorders .
In recent reports, the resin improved memory and learning in rats , and exhibited neuroprotection and nerve stimulation in mice peripheral neuropathy , and anticonvulsant properties .
FAR contains bioactive phytochemicals such as polysulfides, sesquiterpenes, sesquiterpene-coumarins, diterpenes, phenolics, and flavonoids [20,24]. Its coumarin umbelliprenin showed anti-inflammatory properties , while ferulic acid showed anti-atherosclerotic, antioxidant, and neuroprotective properties  and became a candidate for AD .
Therefore, investigations on the resin concerning PD need to be considered.
In the 1980s-1990s, published studies in Europe showed remarkable life span increases in animals given a drug called deprenyl.
In elderly rats treated with deprenyl, remaining life span doubled in response to the drug. Aged dogs given deprenyl had twice the survival rate compared with placebo-treated dogs. Mice that were immune-suppressed lived up to about 200% longer on deprenyl. (Most elderly humans suffer immune suppression).
Not only were life spans lengthened, but some deprenyl-supplemented animals displayed more youthful energy levels, as related to sexual activity.
This outpour of scientific data from Europe had aging Americans clamoring to get their hands on deprenyl. It started being used in Europe to treat Parkinson’s disease in the 1970s, but the FDA did not approve deprenyl until 1989.
When deprenyl was finally approved, it cost Americans 4 times more money than what Europeans were paying for the identical drug. Unwilling to pay this extortionist price, Americans began ordering personal-use supplies from Europe.
The FDA struck back and launched criminal investigations against those seeking to make deprenyl more affordable. The FDA did this at the behest of the drug company that owned the patent on deprenyl.
One individual made a liquid form of deprenyl that sold quite well until he was arrested by the FDA and sent to prison for almost 13 years. Back in those days, deprenyl was the most sought-after anti-aging drug.
Some of our supporters still use deprenyl, though getting a physician to prescribe it for anti-aging purposes is sometimes impossible. This article will describe how Americans can now derive the anti-aging mechanism of deprenyl in a low-cost nutrient.
Deprenyl is a drug the FDA approved to treat early-stage Parkinson’s disease. It was enthusiastically greeted by neurologists when first approved in the United States, but its therapeutic effect on advanced Parkinson’s patients was disappointing.
That’s because a significant drop in dopamine occurs before symptoms of Parkinson’s disease become evident. Therefore, most Parkinson’s patients have already lost so many dopamine-producing neurons that deprenyl is of little value.
Deprenyl enhances the anti-Parkinson effects of standard drugs. Its primary mechanism is to inhibit an enzyme in the brain that destroys dopamine.
Longevity enthusiasts realized 30 years ago that if low-dose deprenyl is initiated before the onset of Parkinson’s symptoms, the brain might be protected against Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.
By inhibiting this dopamine-degrading enzyme, it was theorized, people might not only live longer, but behave younger.
This same enzyme (MAO-B) may be involved in the destruction of dopamine-producing neurons.
Dopamine Levels in the Brain
Prior to age 45 in people, dopamine levels remain fairly stable. After that, dopamine in the human brain decreases by about 13% each decade.
When the dopamine-producing neuron content in the brain reaches about 30% of normal, Parkinson’s symptoms may be present.
When dopamine levels reach 10% of normal, death ensues.
This has led to the hypothesis that if we live long enough, we will all develop Parkinson’s symptoms due to dopamine depletion in our brains.
How Deprenyl Works in the Brain
Monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) is an enzyme in the brain that degrades neurotransmitters like dopamine.
As humans age, MAO-B levels begin to increase and degrade precious dopamine and other neurotransmitters.
Deprenyl is a selective inhibitor of MAO-B. As little as 5 mg twice a week of deprenyl is all aging humans may need to maintain their dopamine at youthful levels.
Parkinson’s patients were prescribed 10mg a day of deprenyl. The inventor of the drug (Dr. Joseph Knoll) believed this dose was too high.
It was long ago hypothesized that low-dose deprenyl might help prevent degenerative brain diseases and improve the quality of life. This is evidenced by increased “mounting frequency” in old male rats treated with deprenyl compared to untreated controls.
Dopamine is a primary “feel-good” neurotransmitter that progressively depletes as humans age. By restoring dopamine and other neurotransmitter levels using low-dose deprenyl, aging humans may regain some of their youthful sense of well-being.
Deprenyl has demonstrated intriguing anti-aging properties. Animals given relatively low doses of the drug live much longer than control groups not receiving deprenyl.
Need to Suppress MAO-B in Aging Brains
The enzyme monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) serves a function in youth by keeping neurotransmitter levels from elevating too high. As we age past 45 years, however, MAO-B levels begin a steady rise that results the depletion in dopamine seen in elderly individuals.
MAO-B also may inflict toxic damage to brain cells via several well-defined mechanisms.
Excess MAO-B not only deprives us of our youthful emotions by depleting dopamine, but also impairs cognitive functions by decreasing acetylcholine while simultaneously accelerating brain aging.
People today should take steps to suppress MAO-B levels as they age past 45 years. Those who are already taking low-dose deprenyl (5 mg twice a week) may be deriving enormous benefits by protecting against MAO-B toxicity.
The problem is that most doctors will not prescribe deprenyl to non-Parkinson’s patients. Insurance companies are unlikely pay for “off-label” use.
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Below is a condensed version about five pages long of the material in The Blood Thinner Cure book
The Blood Thinner Cure Kensey and Turkington, 2001
Here is the book’s hypothetical account (in JBG’s words) of the underlying phenomena: Various things (eg, smoking, cholesterol) cause the blood to thicken. Thick blood makes the heart work harder, raising blood pressure and stressing the arteries, especially those near the heart. The arteries adapt by becoming thicker and less flexible; that is, they harden – arteriosclerosis. Hardened arteries “give” less with each heartbeat than healthy arteries, making the heart work still harder and raising blood pressure still further. Vicious cycle. The lessened “give” also causes blood flow to become turbulent, especially at places where the arteries branch. The turbulence tends to wear away the artery lining at the places of turbulence, resulting in actual lesions. With the aid of platelets in the blood, the arteries adapt by forming calluses over the lesions, narrowing the arteries – atherosclerosis. This causes flow to become even more turbulent. Second vicious cycle. The calluses in an artery can grow to the point of essentially closing off the artery. Or a piece can break off in one place and travel to another to cause a sudden, complete closure. Complicating the entire story is the fact that blood is “viscoelastic” in character, meaning that its viscosity changes in a counterintuitive way with its speed of flow: When the heart contracts, sending blood forward in a forceful surge, the blood becomes thinner; between beats, when the flow greatly slackens, the blood becomes very much thicker.
Note that the book was published in 2001. That means that mentions below of things like “recent findings” do not mean what they say, and today’s views on some things may be different from what is transcribed here; indeed, there are some things where my own views are different from what is transcribed here (eg, re the purported value of aspirin). A few parts of the book not of interest (eg, a section on smoking) are not covered here. The Diet section is omitted because much of its information is out of date (and wrong).
The remainder of this document consists of extracts from the text of the book, mildly edited by JBG, and transcribed to this form with the generous and talented help of MOG.
Part One [the problem]
People with very low blood pressure do not have heart attacks. There is no such thing as too low a blood pressure, as long as you’re not having other symptoms such as weakness or fainting.
In any complex fluid–whether its blood, ketchup, or paint–the thinner it is, the less work it takes to pump it. Therefore, the thinner your blood, the easier it is for your heart to pump it around your body, the less your arteries will have to stretch, and the less injury the arteries will sustain.
Blood is almost fifty per cent red blood cells, although the actual concentration (called the hematocrit) varies from one person to the next. The higher the concentration of red blood cells, the harder your heart must work to pump the blood. A ten percent increase in your hematocrit means a 25% increase in your blood’s thickness.
The second most important factor that determines blood thickness is how flexible your red blood cells are. Because red blood cells are almost three times as big as the capillaries through which they travel, they must be flexible.
The flexibility of a red blood cell is most affected by two variables: *The age of the cell *What is dissolved in the surrounding plasma.
One of the reasons why pre-menopausal women have such a low incidence of atherosclerosis is that they lose blood each month, which triggers the production of new, flexible young red blood cells. Basically, the younger your red blood cells, the more flexible they are. Old, stiff, red blood cells not only make the blood thick, they make it abrasive, worsening the damage inflicted by turbulent flow.
The plasma that surrounds the blood cells can turn to sludge in the presence of chronic infections and inflammations. When there is inflammation in the body (from artery damage itself, long term inflammation, or infection from any cause), the blood becomes thicker and stickier.
Cholesterol does not directly cause atherosclerosis, but it does increase viscosity. In addition, many diseases increase blood thickness by making red blood cells less flexible (as in diabetes or kidney disease) or by increasing their concentration (as in sleep apnea).
As the artery’s lining is injured, it releases C-reactive protein (CRP) into the blood stream. Measuring this protein’s level indicates how much injury is occurring. Researchers know that the higher the concentration of CRP the more likely a man is to have a heart attack or stroke. High CRP levels also predict future heart disease among healthy women. Measuring CRP may presently be one of the most accurate ways to screen for risk of heart attack or stroke because blood levels of this protein begin to rise six to eight years before a first heart attack or stroke.
Part Two [steps toward solution]
Blood donation. For now, the easiest way to thin your blood and make it healthier is to donate blood regularly. Not only will this help make your blood thinner, but also your blood pressure will probably drop, easing the wear and tear on your arteries. We’ve already seen stunning evidence from Finland in which men who gave blood were four times less likely to have heart attacks. Other studies have found similar results, claiming from a two- to tenfold reduction in heart attacks among men who gave blood.
Racehorse breeders have been using this technique since about 1910. Breeders discovered that if they removed blood from a racehorse and then let the horse recover for a few days, the horse would run faster than it could before.
If you’re healthy and you weigh at least 110 pounds, you can donate a pint of blood every eight weeks, according to American Red Cross guidelines. You will give a little less than one pint of whole blood. (The average adult has between 8 and 12 pints of blood and can easily spare one.) Just avoid lifting, pushing, or picking up heavy objects for at least four or five hours after giving blood. You may remove the band-aid after 24 hours. Your body replaces blood volume, or plasma, within 24 hours, but it takes 4-8 weeks for red blood cells to be replaced.
Aspirin. Basically, aspirin is a drug that stops platelets from sticking to injured surfaces, keeping them from clumping together as they normally do to form blood clots at the sites of injury. Once aspirin affects a platelet in this way, it can never become sticky again.
Recent research suggests a link between viruses (especially CMV, a member of the herpes family) and atherosclerosis, an idea that supports the role of inflammation in the plaque-forming process. When there is inflammation in the body (especially long-term inflammation), the blood gets thicker and more viscous. This is why people with inflammatory conditions, including arthritis, allergies, asthma, lupus, and frequent viral or bacterial infections, would benefit from taking a daily aspirin tablet. Theoretically, at least, aspirin should reduce the quantity of antibodies and immunoglobulins in the blood and therefore reduce blood thickness.
Aspirin alone will not prevent vascular disease. The other factors that cause atherosclerosis–high blood pressure, high blood viscosity, and the force of the heart’s contraction–cannot be controlled or reversed by taking aspirin.
Hydration. Once you realize you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. You need to drink enough water so that you don’t get thirsty in the first place. As you breathe, sweat, and move around, you’re losing water into the atmosphere. That fluid must be replaced.
When it comes to your heart, drinking plenty of water actually lowers blood pressure, softens and liquefies blood cells, and helps the cells move through your arteries more easily. And yet, while water is critical in keeping the blood thin and flowing smoothly, the thirst sensation probably doesn’t correlate with blood viscosity any more than with dehydration. You can go for hours without any fluid, to the point where your blood is getting thick as molasses, and still you might not feel thirsty.
For many years, doctors prescribed diuretics (drugs that help you urinate) to lower blood pressure. Many studies have since shown that strokes were often the unfortunate consequence. This isn’t surprising when you consider that using diuretics will make blood thicker.
Heart attacks occur more often in the morning: you are dehydrated and therefore your blood is thicker.
Drinking six to 10 glasses of water a day is good for you. I recommend 12 glasses of water a day. [3 quarts] If you have a weight problem, you’ll need an extra cup of water for every 25 pounds of excess weight. In addition, you should increase the amount of water you drink if you exercise briskly or if the weather is hot and dry.
The good news is that drinking more water is not going to hurt you. In terms of health benefits, few things can match water’s extensive pedigree. Water benefits elimination and detoxification, and helps most of your body’s systems work more efficiently.
Exercise. Exercise stimulates your body to make more blood vessels that can protect you in case one closes off, especially in the heart.
If you start heavy exercise with a heart that is pumping inefficiently, forcing sludge through narrowing arteries, you’re just speeding up the artery injury process described earlier. Some people have a normal resting blood pressure that spikes to fearsome levels during exercise, but you won’t know if you’re one of them unless a cardiologist gives you a stress test.
Start out slowly, and gradually build up your exercise time and frequency. Any activity you choose, however modest, is better than nothing.
As little as thirty minutes of moderate activity on most (preferably all) days of the week helps protect artery health. Casual biking, raking leaves, gardening, and walking, all help. To make exercise a part of your life, choose something you like.
After you get your viscosity and blood pressure under control, and you feel that moderate exercise is no longer enough, you can move into a more vigorous heart and lung conditioning program, eg: * Brisk, sustained walking * Jumping rope * Aerobic dancing * Serious biking
You should then exercise within your target heart rate range for thirty minutes each session. To calculate your target heart rate range: 1. Subtract your age from 220 [Suppose you’re 40: 220 – 40 = 180] 2. Multiply the result by .6 [.6 x 180 = 108] 3. Multiply the initial result by .8 [.8 x 180 = 124] 4. The span between 3. and 4. is your target heart rate range. [108 to 124]
Stress. Researchers found that patients who responded to stress with the highest blood pressure spikes showed thicker carotid artery walls. The link did not depend on other conditions, such as resting blood pressure, risk factors for heart disease, or the existence of heart disease.
Today, experts believe that the people at biggest risk are those who experience negative emotions such as depression, anger, and hostility. If you are chronically hostile or cynical, your body is more likely to react to stress with larger increases in heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormones than people with less hostile feelings. Among people who have a biological tendency toward negative moods, stress appears to trigger a response as if the body were experiencing an actual physical injury. Research clearly shows that stress and many psychological symptoms appear to be directly related to viscosity. The more stress you feel, the thicker your blood tends to be.
The first step to managing your stress is to identify it. Many people underestimate the amount of stress they encounter in their daily life.
Fortunately, there are many simple things you can do to help manage stress in your life, eg: * Journal * Exercise * Pray, or just sit quietly * Get a massage, or take a warm bath * Go outdoors, enjoy nature * Laugh; humor can be a powerful antidote * Seek support; talk things over with friends
Heart disease patients who learn how to manage their stress with relaxation and biofeedback are 77% less likely to have a heart attack or require cardiac surgery than patients who receive only standard medical care.
Deep breathing is essential for stress management. Of all the things you can do to ease anxiety and stress, forming healthy breathing habits can produce the most dramatic results. Whole books have been written about how to do relaxation breathing. Here is one quick technique: 1. Sit in a chair with feet flat, thighs parallel to the floor 2. Inhale through your nose and breathe deeply, without forcing. Let your abdomen expand. Place your hand on your abdomen to feel it rise and fall with your breathing. 3. Fill your lungs with air with one continuous breath. Feel your chest expand fully and your shoulders rise. 4. Exhale slowly through your nose. Breathing out should take longer than breathing in. 5. Do this for at least a minute. Don’t strain, but concentrate on keeping your breathing deep.
Both obesity and lack of exercise contribute to insulin resistance and can lead to diabetes.
High blood pressure and high blood viscosity are about twice as common in people with diabetes.
People who have diabetes tend to have thickened blood. When the diabetes is in poor control and sugar spills into the bloodstream, the red blood cells become less flexible, getting stickier and clumping more easily. Platelets, another blood component, also stick together more in people who have developed diabetes, even in the early stages of the disease.
People with Type II diabetes can often manage their condition with diet alone, aiming for healthy weight, lower levels of blood fats, normal blood pressure, and control of blood sugar.