In England, you must wear a face covering in the following indoor settings (a list of examples for each is included in the brackets):
public transport (aeroplanes, trains, trams and buses)
taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs)
transport hubs (airports, rail and tram stations and terminals, maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals)
shops and supermarkets (places which offer goods or services for retail sale or hire)
shopping centres (malls and indoor markets)
premises providing hospitality (bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes), except when seated at a table to eat or drink (see exemptions) from 24 September
post offices, banks, building societies, high-street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses
premises providing personal care and beauty treatments (hair salons, barbers, nail salons, massage centres, tattoo and piercing parlours)
premises providing veterinary services
visitor attractions and entertainment venues (museums, galleries, cinemas, theatres, concert halls, cultural and heritage sites, aquariums, indoor zoos and visitor farms, bingo halls, amusement arcades, adventure activity centres, indoor sports stadiums, funfairs, theme parks, casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas including soft-play areas)
libraries and public reading rooms
places of worship
funeral service providers (funeral homes, crematoria and burial ground chapels)
community centres, youth centres and social clubs
exhibition halls and conference centres
public areas in hotels and hostels
storage and distribution facilities
You are expected to wear a face covering before entering any of these settings and must keep it on until you leave unless there is a reasonable excuse for removing it. More detailed advice on the application of these requirements in different settings can be found in the government’s guidance for working safely.
You should also wear a face covering in indoor places not listed here where social distancing may be difficult and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
Face coverings are needed in NHS settings, including hospitals and primary or community care settings, such as GP surgeries. They are also advised to be worn in care homes.
Enforcement measures for failing to comply with this law
Premises where face coverings are required should take reasonable steps to promote compliance with the law.
The police can take measures if members of the public do not comply with this law without a valid exemption and transport operators can deny access to their public transport services if a passenger is not wearing a face covering, or direct them to wear one or leave a service.
If necessary, the police and Transport for London (TfL) officers have enforcement powers including issuing fines. From 24 September this will be £200 (reduced to £100 if paid within 14 days) for the first offence.
Repeat offenders receiving fines on public transport or in an indoor setting will have their fines doubled at each offence.
After the first offence, there will be no discount. For example, receiving a second fine will amount to £400 and a third fine will be £800, up to a maximum value of £6,400.
Since the spread of Covid 19 around the world I like many others have been looking for natural herbs to help stay healthy. Of course there are lots of herbal remedies being touted on YouTube and some herbal distributors injecting hashtags relating to a virus to help push there product up the search engine.
I usually buy my spices from the local Delhi Shop mainly because of the wide range and competitive prices. A few weeks ago I noticed that one of the boxes was empty, this is rare I thought, not just one box but five! The label read CARDAMOM. Is there a secret we don’t know about? Well I didn’t have time to do a search but I took a photo of the label to remind me to go investigate later.
To my amazement later on that day I found this some info on the 10 Health Benefits of Cardamom, Backed by Science! So what is Cardamom? It is a spice with an intense, slightly sweet flavor that some people compare to mint. It originated in India but is available worldwide today and used in both sweet and savory recipes. The seeds, oils and extracts of cardamom are thought to have impressive medicinal properties and have been used in traditional medicine for centuries (1, 2).
Here are 10 health benefits of cardamom, backed by science.
1. Antioxidant and Diuretic Properties May Lower Blood Pressure Cardamom may be helpful for people with high blood pressure. In one study, researchers gave three grams of cardamom powder a day to 20 adults who were newly diagnosed with high blood pressure. After 12 weeks, blood pressure levels had significantly decreased to the normal range (3Trusted Source).
The promising results of this study may be related to the high levels of antioxidants in cardamom. In fact, the participants’ antioxidant status had increased by 90% by the end of the study. Antioxidants have been linked to lower blood pressure (3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source). Researchers also suspect that the spice may lower blood pressure due to its diuretic effect, meaning it can promote urination to remove water that builds up in your body, for example around your heart.
Cardamom extract has been shown to increase urination and decrease blood pressure in rats (5Trusted Source).
Cardamom may help lower blood pressure, most likely due to its antioxidant and diuretic properties.
2. May Contain Cancer-Fighting Compounds The compounds in cardamom may help fight cancer cells. Studies in mice have shown that cardamom powder can increase the activity of certain enzymes that help fight cancer (6Trusted Source, 7Trusted Source).
The spice may also enhance the ability of natural killer cells to attack tumors (8Trusted Source).
In one study, researchers exposed two groups of mice to a compound that causes skin cancer and fed one group 500 mg of ground cardamom per kg (227 mg per pound) of weight per day (7 Trusted Source).
After 12 weeks, only 29% of the group who ate the cardamom developed cancer, compared to over 90% of the control group (7Trusted Source).
Research on human cancer cells and cardamom indicate similar results. One study showed that a certain compound in the spice stopped oral cancer cells in test tubes from multiplying (9Trusted Source).
Even though the results are promising, these studies have only been conducted on mice or in test tubes. Human research is needed before stronger claims can be made.
Certain compounds in cardamom may fight cancer and stop the growth of tumors in mice and test tubes. Human research is needed to validate if these results apply to humans as well.
3. May Protect from Chronic Diseases Thanks to Anti-Inflammatory Effects Cardamom is rich in compounds that may fight inflammation. Inflammation occurs when your body is exposed to foreign substances. Acute inflammation is necessary and beneficial, but long-term inflammation can lead to chronic diseases (10Trusted Source, 11Trusted Source, 12).
Antioxidants, found in abundance in cardamom, protect cells from damage and stop inflammation from occurring (13Trusted Source). One study found that cardamom extract in doses of 50–100 mg per kg (23–46 mg per pound) of body weight was effective in inhibiting at least four different inflammatory compounds in rats (14Trusted Source). Another study in rats showed that eating cardamom powder decreased liver inflammation induced by eating a diet high in carbs and fat (15Trusted Source).
Though there are not as many studies on the anti-inflammatory effects of cardamom in humans, research shows that supplements may increase antioxidant status by up to 90% (3Trusted Source).
The antioxidant compounds in cardamom may help protect cells from damage and slow down and prevent inflammation in your body.
4. May Help with Digestive Problems, Including Ulcers Cardamom has been used for thousands of years to help with digestion.
It’s often mixed with other medicinal spices to relieve discomfort, nausea and vomiting (1). The most researched property of cardamom, as it pertains to relieving stomach issues, is its possible ability to heal ulcers.
In one study, rats were fed extracts of cardamom, turmeric and sembung leaf in hot water before being exposed to high doses of aspirin to induce stomach ulcers. These rats developed fewer ulcers compared to rats that only received aspirin (16Trusted Source). A similar study in rats found that cardamom extract alone could completely prevent or reduce the size of gastric ulcers by at least 50%.
In fact, at doses of 12.5 mg per kg (5.7 mg per pound) of body weight, cardamom extract was more effective than a common anti-ulcer medication (17Trusted Source). Test-tube research also suggests that cardamom may protect against Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria linked to the development of most stomach ulcer issues (18Trusted Source). More research is needed to know if the spice would have the same effect against ulcers in humans.
SUMMARY Cardamom may protect against digestive issues and has been shown to reduce the number and size of stomach ulcers in rats.
5. May Treat Bad Breath and Prevent Cavities The use of cardamom to treat bad breath and improve oral health is an ancient remedy. In some cultures, it’s common to freshen your breath by eating entire cardamom pods after a meal (1). Even the chewing gum manufacturer Wrigley uses the spice in one of its products.
The reason why cardamom can lead to minty fresh breath may have to do with its ability to fight common mouth bacteria (19Trusted Source). One study found that cardamom extracts were effective in fighting five bacteria that can cause dental cavities. In some test-tube cases, the extracts prevented the growth of the bacteria by up to 0.82 inches (2.08 cm) (20). Additional research shows that cardamom extract can reduce the number of bacteria in saliva samples by 54% (21). However, all of these studies have been conducted in test tubes, making it unclear how the results may apply to humans.
SUMMARY Cardamom is often used to treat bad breath and is a component of some chewing gums. This is because cardamom might be able to kill common mouth bacteria and prevent cavities.
6. May Have Antibacterial Effects and Treat Infections Cardamom also has antibacterial effects outside of the mouth and may treat infections. Research shows that cardamom extracts and essential oils have compounds that fight several common strains of bacteria (22Trusted Source, 23Trusted Source, 24Trusted Source, 25Trusted Source).
One test-tube study examined the impact of these extracts on drug-resistant strains of Candida, a yeastthat can cause fungal infections. The extracts were able to inhibit the growth of some strains by 0.39–0.59 inches (0.99–1.49 cm) (26Trusted Source).
Additional test-tube research found that essential oils and extracts of cardamom were just as, and sometimes more effective than standard drugs against E. coli and Staphylococcus, bacteria that can cause food poisoning (23Trusted Source). Test-tube studies have also shown that cardamom essential oils fight the bacteria Salmonella that leads to food poisoning and Campylobacter that contributes to stomach inflammation (24Trusted Source, 25Trusted Source).
Existing studies on the antibacterial effects of cardamom have only looked at isolated strains of bacteria in labs. Therefore, the evidence is currently not strong enough to make claims that the spice would have the same effect in humans.
SUMMARY The essential oils and extracts of cardamom may be effective against a variety of bacterial strains that contribute to fungal infections, food poisoning and stomach issues. However, research has only been conducted in test tubes and not in humans.
7. May Improve Breathing and Oxygen Use Compounds in cardamom may help increase airflow to your lungs and improve breathing. When used in aromatherapy, cardamom can provide an invigorating odor that enhances your body’s ability to use oxygen during exercise (27).
One study asked a group of participants to inhale cardamom essential oil for one minute before walking on a treadmill for 15-minute intervals. This group had a significantly higher oxygen uptake compared to the control group (27). Another way that cardamom may improve breathing and oxygen use is by relaxing your airway. This may be particularly helpful for treating asthma. A study in rats and rabbits found that injections of cardamom extract could relax the throat air passage. If the extract has a similar effect in people with asthma, it may prevent their inflamed airways from restricting and improve their breathing (28).
SUMMARY Cardamom may improve breathing by stimulating better oxygen uptake and relaxing air passage to the lungs in humans and animals. . May Lower Blood Sugar Levels When taken in powder form, cardamom may lower blood sugar.
One study found that feeding rats a high-fat, high-carb (HFHC) diet caused their blood sugar levels to remain elevated longer than if they were fed a normal diet (15Trusted Source).
When rats on the HFHC diet were given cardamom powder, their blood sugar did not stay elevated for longer than the blood sugar of rats on a normal diet (15Trusted Source).
However, the powder may not have the same effect in humans with type 2 diabetes. In a study in over 200 adults with this condition, participants were divided into groups that took only black tea or black tea with three grams of either cinnamon, cardamom or ginger every day for eight weeks (29Trusted Source).
The results showed that cinnamon, but not cardamom or ginger, improved blood sugar control (29Trusted Source). In order to better understand the effect of cardamom on blood sugar in humans, more studies are needed.
SUMMARY A study on rats suggests that cardamom may help decrease high blood sugar levels, but more high-quality human studies are needed.
9. Other Potential Health Benefits of Cardamom In addition to the aforementioned health benefits, cardamom may be good for your health in other ways as well. Studies in rats have found that the high antioxidant levels in the spice may prevent both liver enlargement, anxiety and even aid weight loss:
Liver protection: Cardamom extract may decrease elevated liver enzymes, triglyceride and cholesterol levels. They may also prevent liver enlargement and liver weight, which reduces the risk of fatty liver disease (30, 31Trusted Source, 32Trusted Source, 33Trusted Source).
Anxiety: One rat study suggests that cardamom extract may prevent anxious behaviors. This may be because low blood levels of antioxidants have been linked to the development of anxiety and other mood disorders (34Trusted Source, 35Trusted Source, 36Trusted Source).
Weight loss: A study in 80 overweight and obese prediabetic women found a link between cardamom and slightly reduced waist circumference. However, rat studies on weight loss and the spice have not found significant results (15Trusted Source, 37Trusted Source) The number of studies on the link between cardamom and these potential benefits is limited and mostly done on animals.
Furthermore, the reasons why the spice may help improve liver health, anxiety and weight are unclear.
SUMMARY: A limited number of studies suggests that cardamom supplements may decrease waist circumference and prevent anxious behaviors and fatty liver. The reasons behind these effects are unclear but may have to do with the spice’s high antioxidant content.
10. Safe for Most People and Widely Available Cardamom is generally safe for most people. The most common way to use cardamom is in cooking or baking. It’s very versatile and often added to Indian curries and stews, as well as gingerbread cookies, bread and other baked goods.
The use of cardamom supplements, extracts and essential oils is likely to become more common in light of the promising results of research on its medicinal uses. However, there is currently no recommended dose for the spice since most studies have been on animals. The use of supplements should be monitored by a health professional. Furthermore, cardamom supplements may not be suitable for children and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Most supplements recommend 500 mg of cardamom powder or extract once or twice a day. The FDA does not regulate supplements, so be sure to choose brands that have been tested by a third party if you’re encouraged to try cardamom supplements by a healthcare provider. If you’re interested in trying cardamom, remember that adding the spice to your foods may be the safest way.
SUMMARY Using cardamom in cooking is safe for most people. Cardamom supplements and extracts have not been thoroughly researched and should only be taken under the guidance of a healthcare provider.
The Bottom Line Cardamom is an ancient remedy that may have many medicinal properties. It may lower blood pressure, improve breathing and aid weight loss.
What’s more, animal and test-tube studies show that cardamom may help fight tumors, improve anxiety, fight bacteria and protect your liver, though the evidence in these cases is less strong. However, little or no human research exists for a number of the health claims associated with the spice. More studies are needed to show if or how the results of preliminary research apply to humans.
Nevertheless, adding cardamom to your cooking may be a safe and effective way to improve your health. Cardamom extracts and supplements may also provide benefits but should be taken with caution and under the supervision of a doctor.
MCT oil is a supplement often added to smoothies, bulletproof coffee and salad dressings.
As the name suggests, medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil contains medium-length chains of fats called triglycerides. Due to their shorter length, MCTs are easily digested and many health benefits are linked to the way your body processes these fats.
So Let’s Get To The Bottom Line First!
Taking MCT oil could have many benefits and very few risks.
For starters, it contains fatty acids that can promote weight loss by reducing body fat, increasing fullness and potentially improving your gut environment.
MCTs are also a great source of energy and may fight bacterial growth, help protect your heart and aid in managing diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy and autism.
Potential drawbacks may include increased hunger and possible fat accumulation in your liver. However, as long as you keep to 1–2 tablespoons per day and use it to replace — not add — to your normal fat intake, any negative side effects are unlikely.
At the end of the day, MCT oil is a convenient way to take advantage of all the health benefits MCTs have to offer.
So where does it originate from
MCT oil is most commonly extracted from coconut oil, as more than 50% of the fat in coconut oil comes from MCTs. These fats are also found in many other foods, such as palm oil and dairy products.
Four different types of MCTs exist, of which caprylic and capric acid are most commonly used for MCT oil. In some cases, these specific types have unique benefits.
Here are 7 science-backed benefits you can get from adding MCT oil to your diet.
1. Promotes Weight Loss in Several Important Ways
There are several reasons why MCT oil may be beneficial when you’re trying to lose weight.
MCT oil has been shown to increase the release of two hormones that promote the feeling of fullness in the body: peptide YY and leptin. It may even be better than coconut oil in keeping you full. One study found that people taking two tablespoons of MCT oil as part of their breakfast ended up eating less food for lunch compared to those taking coconut oil.
The same study also discovered a lower rise in triglycerides and glucose with MCT oil, which may also influence the feeling of fullness.
Additionally, taking MCT oil has been shown to significantly reduce body weight and waist circumference. Researchers even report that it could help prevent obesity.
MCT oil has about 10% fewer calories than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs), which are found in foods such as olive oil, nuts and avocados
Your body also processes MCTs differently, which may help you burn calories
Your body can use MCT oil as an instant source of energy, making it unnecessary to store fat for this purpose. Nevertheless, it’s important to note that your body may adapt to this dietary change, leading to only temporary results.
MCTs can be converted into ketones, which are produced from the breakdown of fat when carb intake is low. If you’re following a ketogenic diet, which is very low in carbs yet high in fat, then taking MCT oil can help you stay in the fat-burning state known as ketosis.
Lastly, your gut environment is very important when it comes to your weight. MCT oil can help optimize the growth of good bacteria and support the gut lining, which could also help you lose weight.
MCT oil may support weight loss by increasing fullness, fat loss, energy burning, ketone production and by improving your gut environment.
2. Instant Source of Energy That Can Also Be Used to Fuel Your Brain
MCT oil has been dubbed a super fuel since your body absorbs MCTs more rapidly than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs), which contain more carbons in their fatty acid chains.
Due to their shorter chain length, MCTs travel straight from the gut to the liver and do not require bile to break down like longer-chain fats do.
In the liver, the fats are broken down to be either used as fuel or stored as body fat.
Since MCTs easily enter your cells without being broken down, they can be used as an immediate source of energy.
When you’re on a ketogenic diet, MCTs can also be converted into ketones in the liver.
These ketones can pass through your blood-brain barrier, making them a convenient source of energy for your brain cells.
MCT oil is easily absorbed and transported throughout the body. It can be used as an instant source of energy or can be converted into ketones to fuel your brain.
3.May Reduce Lactate Buildup in Athletes and Help Use Fat for Energy
MCT oil has gained popularity amongst athletes. During exercise, rising lactate levels can negatively impact exercise performance.
Interestingly, MCTs may help with lactate buildup. One study found that athletes who took 6 grams or about 1.5 teaspoons of MCTs with food before cycling had lower lactate levels and found it easier to exercise, compared to those taking LCTs. Furthermore, the study found that taking the MCT oil before exercise may help you use more fat instead of carbs for energy.
Even though MCTs can increase fat burning during exercise, study results are mixed as to whether MCT oil can help you exercise better. One study showed it could improve swimming capacity in mice, but another human-based study found no improvement in endurance performance in runners.
At the very least, the results of one animal study suggest that MCT oil does not negatively affect exercise performance, which is encouraging.
MCT oil can increase fat burning and reduce the need for carbs during exercise. However, it is unclear whether this translates to improved exercise performance.
4. Could Help Manage Epilepsy, Alzheimer’s Disease and Autism
Studies have shown that MCT oil and a ketogenic diet may help manage conditions such as epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, and autism.
While the ketogenic diet has gained popularity amongst people wishing to lose weight, it was first introduced as a way of managing epilepsy.
Scientists found that fasting increases ketone production and that this may reduce the frequency of epileptic seizures.
Since MTCs can be converted into ketones, they may be beneficial in managing epilepsy. However, the type of MCT may be important. One test-tube study showed that the MCT capric acid improved seizure control better than a widespread anti-epileptic drug.
Another study in rats found that the same MCT blocked receptors in the brain that cause seizures, though more human studies are needed. In addition, it’s important to note that a ketogenic diet is not for everyone and can be challenging to follow long term.
If you are considering a ketogenic diet to help manage your epilepsy, talk to your doctor or nutrition professional first.
Alzheimer’s disease impairs your brain’s ability to use sugar. An MCT ketogenic diet offers an alternative energy source: ketones. This allows brain cells to survive better. It also blocks a receptor in the brain that causes memory loss.
One study found that a single dose of MCTs improved short-term cognition in 20 people with Alzheimer’s disease with a certain gene type, namely APOE ɛ4-negative.
While genetic factors play a role, evidence suggests that 20–70 grams of supplemental MCTs that include caprylic or capric acid can modestly improve the symptoms of mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s.
Overall, the benefits of MCT oil in Alzheimer’s disease are promising, but longer and larger scale studies are needed .
MCT oil may also help children with autism.
One study found positive overall improvements when a ketogenic diet was followed for 6 months. Another study found that adding MCTs to a ketogenic and gluten-free diet substantially improved autism behaviors for 6 of the 15 children involved. Because autism is a spectrum condition, it can affect people in different ways.
This means that adding MCT oil to your child’s diet may help to varying degrees or may show no positive effects. More research is needed here, as well.
If you are considering a ketogenic diet to help manage your child’s autism, talk to your doctor or nutrition professional first.
MCT oil may improve brain function, which could have benefits for people with epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease and autism.
5. Contains Powerful Fatty Acids That Fight Yeast and Bacterial Growth
MCTs have been shown to have antimicrobial and anti fungal effects.
Coconut oil, which contains a large amount of MCTs, has been shown to reduce the growth of Candida albicans by 25%. This is a common yeast that can cause thrush and various skin infections.
A test-tube study also showed that coconut oil reduced the growth of a disease-causing bacteria called Clostridium difficile.
Coconut oil’s ability to reduce yeast and bacterial growth may be due to the caprylic, capric and lauric acid in MCTs.
MCTs themselves have also been shown to suppress the growth of a widespread infectious fungus in hospitals by up to 50%. However, note that most of the research on MCTs and immune support has been conducted via test-tube or animal studies. High-quality human studies are needed before stronger conclusions can be made.
MCT oil contains fatty acids that have been shown to reduce the growth of yeast and bacteria. Overall, MCTs may have a variety of antimicrobial and anti-fungal effects.
6. May Reduce Risk Factors for Heart Disease, Such as Weight and Cholesterol
Heart disease is a growing problem. Some factors that increase your risk include high cholesterol, blood pressure, inflammation, being overweight and smoking.
MCT oil has been shown to support weight and fat loss. This may, in turn, help reduce your risk of heart disease. A study of 24 overweight men found that taking MCT oil combined with phytosterols and flaxseed oil for 29 days reduced total cholesterol by 12.5%. However, when olive oil was used instead, the reduction was only 4.7%.
The same study also found better reductions in LDL or “bad” cholesterol when the MCT oil mixture was added to their diet. Moreover, MCT oil can also increase the production of heart-protective HDL or “good” cholesterol .
It can even significantly reduce C-reactive protein (CRP), an inflammatory marker that increases the risk of heart disease. Additional studies found that MCT-oil-based mixtures can have a positive effect on other heart disease risk factors, as well.
MCT oil may reduce heart disease risk factors such as weight, cholesterol and inflammation. Adding it to your diet could help lower your risk of heart disease.
7. May Help Control Blood Sugar Levels and Support Diabetes Management
MCT oil may also have benefits for those with diabetes. Most people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese, which makes diabetes harder to manage. However, MCTs have been shown to reduce fat storage and increase fat burning.
One small Chinese study of 40 people with diabetes found that those who consumed MCT oil daily had significant reductions in body weight, waist circumference and insulin resistance, compared to those taking corn oil containing LCTs.
Another study found that when 10 people with diabetes were injected with insulin, they needed 30% less sugar to maintain normal blood sugar levels when they consumed MCTs, compared to LCTs. However, the same study did not find any effect of MCTs on reducing fasting blood sugar levels. Therefore, other factors such as timing and the amount of food eaten may influence the effects of MCT oil.
MCT oil may help manage diabetes by reducing fat storage and increasing fat burning. It may also help you control your blood sugar.
Potential Drawbacks of MCT Oil
Although MCTs are considered safe, they may have some disadvantages.
May Stimulate the Release of Hunger Hormones
While MCTs can increase the release of hormones that help you feel fuller longer, they may also stimulate the release of hunger hormones in some people
A study on people with anorexia found that MCTs increased the release of two hormones that stimulate appetite: ghrelin and neuropeptide Y.
People who took more than 6 grams of MCTs per day produced more of these hormones than those who had less than 1 gram per day.
However, it is unclear whether the increase in these hormones actually causes you to eat more.
High Doses Could Lead to Fat Buildup in the Liver
High doses of MCT oil may increase the amount of fat in your liver in the long term.
One 12-week study in mice found that a diet in which 50% of the fats were MCTs increased liver fat. Interestingly, the same study also found that MCTs reduced total body fat and improved insulin resistance.
However, keep in mind that high doses of MCT oil, such as those in the study above, are not recommended. Overall, more research is needed on the long-term effects of MCT oil.
MCTs are high in calories and usually only make up about 5–10% of your total calorie intake. If you are trying to maintain or lose weight, you should consume MCT oil as part of your total amount of fat intake and not as an additional amount of fat.
MCT oil increases the release of hunger hormones, which could lead to increased food intake. In the long term, it may also increase the amount of fat in your liver.
Source Previously Written by Sharon O’Brien on May 14, 2018
MCT Oil 101 – A Review of Medium-Chain Triglycerides
Written by Mary Jane Brown, PhD, RD (UK)
Supplementing with MCT oil is a popular way to cause fat loss and increase energy levels. MCT stands for medium-chain triglyceride.
Other topic to review
1. How to Lose Weight Fast: 3 Simple Steps, Based on Science
Written by Kris Gunnars, BSc
A simple 3-step plan to lose weight fast, along with numerous effective weight loss tips. All of this is supported by science (with references).
2. The Ketogenic Diet 101: A Detailed Beginner’s Guide
Written by Rudy Mawer, MSc, CISSN
The ketogenic diet (keto) is a low-carb, high-fat diet that causes weight loss and provides numerous health benefits. This is a detailed beginner’s…
8 minutes and 46 seconds struck a match globally and for most people after being in lockdown for 2 months, a time to slow down, digest, rest and reflect, this 8 minutes and 46 seconds removed the pink tinted glasses around the world about race relations, justice and inequality.
Firstly I needed to look up and define the different faces of stigma.
a) Public stigma is the reaction that the general population has to people with mental illness.
b) Self-stigma is the prejudice which people with mental illness turn against themselves.
c) Both public and self-stigma may be understood in terms of three components: stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination
An example of stigma is the spot on an otherwise blemish-free potato. So when a person maintains they have not experienced racism, or they have black friends or I just don’t get it, they are in some way claiming that in accordance to their blemish free experience it does not exist. Probably not a fabulous example, but we can all improvise.
I have been impressed and recently stimulated by George Baldwin a author who used his distinct perspective and lyrical writing to shed light on issues of race, homosexuality, and religion in a way that placed him ahead of his time when it came to social commentary. One of his poignant quotes ‘times’ as follows:
“What is it you want me to reconcile myself to? I was born here almost sixty years ago. I’m not going to live another sixty years. You always told me it takes time. It has taken my father’s time, my mother’s time. My uncle’s time. My brother’s and sister’s time. My niece’s and my nephew’s time.
How much time do you want for your…’progress’?”
So I want to try and reframe the argument for racism by describing it as Social Oppression. Maybe this way more individuals might be able to see, feel and put into context the often intangible experiences of racism which is alien to some.
Social oppressionis a concept that describes the relationship between two categories of people in which one benefits from the systematic abuse and exploitation of the other. Because social oppression is something that occurs between categories of people, it should not be confused with the oppressive behaviour of individuals. In cases of social oppression, all members of the dominant and subordinate groups are involved, regardless of individual attitudes or behaviour.
The outcome of social oppression is that groups in society are sorted into different positions within the social hierarchies of race, class, gender, sexuality, and ability. Those in the controlling, or dominant group, benefit from the oppression of other groups through heightened privileges relative to others, greater access to rights and resources, a better quality of life, and overall greater life chances. Those who experience the brunt of oppression have fewer rights, less access to resources, less political power, lower economic potential, worse health and higher mortality rates, and lower overall life chances.
Groups that experience oppression within the United States and other Countries include racial and ethnic minorities, women, poor LGBT people, and the lower classes and the poor. Groups that benefit from oppression in the U.S. include white people (and sometimes light-skinned racial and ethnic minorities), men, heterosexual people, and the middle and upper classes.
One thing we should be able to agree on
All humans belong to the same species (Homo sapiens) and sub-species (Homo sapiens sapiens), but small genetic variations trigger varying physical appearances.
Another prospective for instance – in the sea and rivers around the world it is filled with thousands of different fish’s but they are all still fishes because primarily they can only survive in water. Just imagine a group of fishes deciding that another group of fishes did not deserve or fit the criteria to exist in water? They devised strategies to segregate, disenfranchise, starve, degrade and kill, what do you think would happen?
Though humans often are subdivided into races, the actual morphological variations don’t indicate major differences in DNA.
The DNA of two humans chosen at random generally varies by less than 0.1%. Because racial genetic differences aren’t strong, some scientists describe all humans as belonging to a single race: the human race.
Race vs. Ethnicity
Examples of ethnicity include being labelled as Irish, Jewish, or Cambodian, regardless of race. Ethnicity is considered an anthropological term because it is based on learned behaviours, not biological factors. Many people have mixed cultural backgrounds and can share in more than one ethnicity.
Race and ethnicity can overlap. For example, a Japanese-American would probably consider herself a member of the Japanese or Asian race, but, if she doesn’t engage in any practices or customs of her ancestors, she might not identify with the ethnicity, instead considering herself an American.
Another way to look at the difference is to consider people who share the same ethnicity. Two people might identify their ethnicity as American, yet one is black and the other white. A person born of Asian descent growing up in Britain might identify racially as Asian and ethnically as British.
Race Trumps Ethnicity
New York University sociology professor Dalton Conley spoke to PBS about the difference between race and ethnicity for the program “Race: The Power of an Illusion”: “The fundamental difference is that race is socially imposed and hierarchical. There is an inequality built into the system. Furthermore, you have no control over your race; it’s how you’re perceived by others.”
Conley, like other sociologists, argues that ethnicity is more fluid and crosses racial lines:
“I have a friend who was born in Korea to Korean parents, but as an infant, she was adopted by an Italian family in Italy. Ethnically, she feels Italian: She eats Italian food, she speaks Italian, she knows Italian history and culture. She knows nothing about Korean history and culture. But when she comes to the United States, she’s treated racially as Asian.”
Differences between race and ethnicity:
Race is biological, while ethnicity is cultural.
Ethnicity can be displayed or hidden, while race generally cannot be.
Ethnicity can be adopted, ignored, or broadened, while racial characteristics cannot.
Ethnicity has subcategories, while races no longer do.
Both have been used to subjugate or persecute people.
Some sociologists believe that racial divisions are based more on sociological concepts than biological principles.
All groups make up a society, social oppression disenfranchised the interconnect structure.
A lone brick cannot build a house, collective brick can, but it has to be based on a strong foundation.
So what needs to be put right
To start with to put in place procedures and policies with zero tolerance to being misinterpreted to correct the collective failure of any institution or organisation to provide an appropriate and professional service to people because of their colour, culture, or ethnic origin.
We have seen the rise of diversity employees and training, but this is often window dressing.
When institutions and organisations prepare there risk assessment, there SWOT analysis there ISO 9001 the findings are then written into the DNA of the company or organisation to ensure there survival.
Educational institutions are important because they need to equally inform their students about the truth of history so that it does not keep repeating the warped narrowing that perpetuates ignorance, victimisation, intolerance and oppressive entitlement behaviours.
I finish with scripture
Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, ‘Here’s a good seat for you,’ but say to the poor man, ‘You stand there’ or ‘Sit on the floor by my feet,’ have you not discriminated among yourselves and becomes judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court?” James 2:2-6
Each disinfecting chemical has its own specific instructions. But an important general rule is that you shouldn’t immediately wipe a cleaning solution off as soon as you’ve applied it to a surface. Let it sit there long enough to kill viruses first,” says Donald Schaffner, professor and extension specialist in food science with expertise in microbial risk assessment and handwashing.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends daily disinfection for frequently touched surfaces such as tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards,toilets, faucets, and sinks.
The CDC also recommends the use of detergent or soap and water on dirty surfaces prior to disinfection.
If someone in your home is sick with flu-like symptoms, consider regularly disinfecting objects in your home, since SARS-CoV-2 has been shown to survive for 16 hours on plastics.
Whatever cleaning solution you use, let it remain in contact with the surface long enough to kill viruses and other pathogens. The time needed will depend on the chemical.
Don’t use different cleaning agents at the same time. Some household chemicals, if mixed, can create dangerous and poisonous gases.
How do I clean with bleach?
Bleach can be diluted with cold water to make an effective disinfectant against bacteria,fungi, and many viruses including coronaviruses. You can typically use one-quarter cup of bleach per 1 gallon of cold water—but be sure to follow the directions on the label of your bleach.
Make dilute bleach solution as needed and use it within 24 hours, as its disinfecting ability fades with time.
Non-porous items like plastic toys can be immersed in bleach for 30 seconds. Household surfaces that won’t be damaged by bleach should get 10 or more minutes of exposure.
Bleach solutions are very hard on the skin, and should not be used as a substitute for handwashing and/or hand sanitizer.
What about alcohol?
Alcohol in many forms, including rubbing alcohol, can be effective for killing many pathogens.
You can dilute alcohol with water (or aloe vera to make hand sanitizer) but be sure to keep an alcohol concentration of around 70% to kill coronaviruses. Many hand sanitizers have a concentration of about 60% alcohol, and Lysol contains about 80%; these are all effective against coronaviruses.
Solutions of 70% alcohol should be left on surfaces for 30 seconds (including cellphones—but check the advice of the phone manufacturer to make sure you don’t void the warranty) to ensure they will kill viruses. Pure (100%) alcohol evaporates too quickly for this purpose.
Containers of 70% alcohol should be sealed to prevent evaporation. But unlike bleach solutions, they will remain potent as long as they are sealed between uses.
A 70% alcohol solution with water will be very harsh on your hands and should not be used as a substitute for handwashing and/or hand sanitizer.
Can I use hydrogen peroxide?
Hydrogen peroxideis typically sold in concentrations of about 3%. It can be used as is, or diluted to 0.5% concentration for effective use against coronaviruses on surfaces. It should be left on surfaces for one minute before wiping.
Will vinegar kill off coronavirus?
Vinegar, tea tree oil, and other natural products are not recommended for fighting coronaviruses.
A study on influenza virus found that cleaning with a 10% solution of malt vinegar was effective, but few other studies have found vinegar to be able to kill a significant fraction of viruses or other microbes.
While tea tree oil may help control the virus that causes cold sores, there is no evidence that it can kill coronaviruses.
Whether it’s dating app snaps, Instagram selfies, or even that corporate head shot on LinkedIn, maintaining a youthful appearance has become a critical feature of modern life and more and more people experiencing hair loss can suffer anxiety attacks at the sight of a mobile phone snapping their photo.
In the randomised study of over 2,000 women in the UK, more than one in five said they are suffering from hair loss or hair thinning. When you add in the number of women who have suffered from this in the past, the figure rises to almost 30 per cent.
A further 25 per cent who did not have the problem themselves knew friends or family who did.
The emotional toll can be devastating: many of those the researchers spoke to described how they had begun to withdraw from everyday activities.
As many as 51 per cent say they now shy away from having photos taken, 47 per cent say they avoid social events and 40 per cent said the same for meeting new people. Anxiety and embarrassment were also common responses to developing the condition.
One of the main reasons we lack an effective way to prevent hair loss is that we still understand very little about the molecular mechanisms that underpin human hair growth and loss.
Each hair follicle on our scalp is a miniature organ, which follows its own rhythmic cycle of growth, regression and rest throughout our lifetimes. With age, some of them become sensitive to hormones on the scalp, most notably dihydro testosterone or DHT, which binds to the follicles and miniaturises them until they no longer produce visible hair. However, we know hardly anything about how this miniaturisation process happens, or how to prevent it.
According to Prof Ralf Paus, a dermatologist at the University of Manchester, this is because hair loss is still viewed largely as a cosmetic problem, rather than a disease. Because of this, in the western world, neither industry nor academic funding bodies have been willing to spend substantial sums of money on hair research.
Despite the scale of patient demand, they have been dissuaded by the knowledge that any drug that hits the market is unlikely to be covered by the NHS or insurance companies.
So how could you self help and what does this have to do with your liver.
Liver disease can impact hair growth and trigger the onset of hair loss. Therefore, improper functioning of the liver affects all metabolic systems including digestion and the uptake of fat soluble vitamins. This is primarily because proper digestion and the uptake of vitamins is crucial for hair growth and cycling.
The liver is responsible for the uptake of fat-soluble vitamins, the detoxification of estrogen and the regulation of blood sugar. All of which are important for normal follicle hair cycling. In addition to normal metabolic function the liver performs hundreds of different functions.
Detoxification of the body takes place via a number of body systems. The principle organ of detoxification is the liver. Life is dependent on the function of the liver as the primary defence against any toxins that enter the blood stream.
The liver can be found on the right on the side of the stomach and weighs about 3 pounds. It is divided into two large sections called the right and the left lobes. The liver sits on top off the gall bladder and alongside parts of the pancreas and intestines.
Liver detoxification has been touted as the perfect route to an efficient liver; but is detoxifying the liver treating the cause or the symptom? Detoxifying our organ of detoxification is a contradiction in terms but certain methods can be employed to aid the liver in its normal detoxification process.
A liver that is not detoxifying efficiently could be the result of an iron deficiency or chronic over consumption of alcohol; medication or certain types of hormonal therapy. Liver disease can also be caused by hypothyroidism or adrenal insufficiency
FUNCTIONS OF THE LIVER IN RELATION TO HAIR LOSS
Conversion of ammonia The conversion of ammonia to urea is essential for normal metabolism. Ammonia is taken up from the blood by hepatocytes (liver cells) and converted to urea through the Krebs-Henseleit cycle. Ammonia is the by product of the break down of amino acids; disorders of the ammonia/urea cycle can lead to iron deficiency. Individuals with hyperammonia (high levels of ammonia in the blood) are likely to develop coarse brittle hair. They may also have brittle hair that breaks easily, a condition known as trichorrhexis nodasa.
Maintenance of blood sugar Blood sugar regulation is linked to hair loss and low levels of blood sugar can lead to hair thinning and premature hair fall. Hair follicles require an adequate supply of glucose to remain in anagen (growing phase) and periods of low blood sugar can disturb normal follicle cycling.
Although fatty acids and ketone bodies can be oxidised by the hair follicle, they are poor energetic substitutes for glucose.
Storage of vitamins Fat soluble vitamins travel through the lymphatic system of the small intestines and into blood stream within your body .
The liver stores fat soluble vitamins: A, D,E and K. The bile secreted during digestion is essential for absorbing them so that the body can use them. If bile production is compromised by liver damage, the proper absorption of these vitamins may be affected. Fat soluble vitamins are essential for norma hair follicle cycling.
Detoxification of the blood The liver is responsible for filtering bacteria, old red blood cells and toxins (such as alcohol) from the blood. The liver is also the site of biosynthesis hormones such as estrogen. Estrogen is related to hair growth and hair loss. When estrogen levels are sufficient, women have full, thick hair. But when they drop, such as after a pregnancy or during and after menopause, more hair enters the “resting” phase, where it soon falls out and causes thinning and even balding patches .
THE LIVER DETOXIFICATION PATHWAY The liver removes toxins and metabolic waste by converting them to water soluble compounds that can be excreted in the urine. Substances that are not water soluble are excreted in the bile, the bile is transported into the intestines and excreted in the faeces.
Phase-one detoxification transforms toxins through oxidation, reduction and hydrolysis by utilising a network of around 50 detoxification enzymes collectively known as cytochrome P-450 enzyme system. This transformation process creates free radicals (highly reactive species of oxygen). These free radicals are normally balanced by antioxidants.
Phase I detoxification prepares substances for phase-two detoxification. The liver normally produces a supply of antioxidants to negate any potential damage caused by free radicals. Key nutritional requirements for phase one detoxification include vitamin: A, E and B3. Minerals required include zinc, magnesium; essential fatty acids are also necessary.
Phase II detoxification transforms any toxic agents so they can be excreted in the urine or in the faeces.
If phase-two processing fails to keep up with phase-one free radicals can accumulate, in the form of reactive intermediates. A reactive intermediate is a short-lived, high-energy, highly reactive molecule, when your liver fails to process theses intermediates efficiently they begin to build up. If the liver can not process intermediates; much like a factory line production will slow down considerably
PHASE I INHIBITION • Vitamin deficiency • Mineral deficiency • Oral contraceptive • Anti-histimines • Iron overload
PHASE I OVER STIMULATION • Alcohol • Caffeine • Nicotine • Certain medication
TOXIC OVERLOAD IN THE BODY If the phase I and II detoxification pathways become overloaded, there will be a build up of toxins in the body. Most of these toxins will fat soluble and incorporate themselves into fatty parts of the body.
The brain and the endocrine (hormonal) glands are fatty organs, and are common sites for storage of fat-soluble toxins. This may result in symptoms of brain dysfunction and hormonal imbalances, such as infertility, breast pain, menstrual disturbances, adrenal gland exhaustion and early menopause.
SECRETION OF BILE AND ITS ROLE IN HAIR LOSS
Bile is a green-yellow fluid that is synthesised by the liver; it is critical for the breakdown of fats and absorption of fat soluble vitamins. Once bile synthesis is compromised essential fatty acid and fat soluble vitamin deficiencies can develop.
Essential fatty acids are essential for hair growth.
a lack of vitamin A can cause hypoplasia (dry hair and scalp) or hyperplasia (greasy hair and oily scalp).
research shows that a lack of vitamin D in your body can lead to hair loss. When there isn’t enough vitamin D in your system, new hair growth can be stunted.
a small trial from 2010 found that vitamin E supplements improved hair growth in people with hair loss. It’s thought that the vitamin’s antioxidant properties helped reduce oxidative stress in the scalp.
vitamin K helps regulate calcium deposition in the body; because of this, it helps prevent blood vessel calcification, as seen in pattern hair loss scalp calcification.
NUTRIENT SUPPORT FOR THE LIVER
Vitamin B complex
B vitamins help the body obtain energy from food and is also involved in cholesterol and hormone production.
Selenium is an essential trace element and necessary for a healthy liver. Selenium increases levels of glutathione peroxidase, a powerful antioxidant required for phase II detoxification.
Alcohol consumption can lower content of several trace elements, as iron, zinc, copper, and manganese.
Low doses of beta carotene have an anti-oxidation role in the liver preventing damage and inflammation.
Vitamin C is also important in liver detoxification pathways. It helps protect liver detoxification enzymes, created in phase I and phase II liver detoxification pathways, from oxidative damage.
Antioxidants such as vitamin E reduce the damage caused by free radicals created in phase I. If antioxidants are lacking and toxin exposure is high, toxic chemicals become far more damaging to the liver.
Slightly lower than normal levels of copper has been reported as a potential factor in diseases characterised by disrupted fat metabolism such as non-alcoholic fatty-liver disease.
Zinc deficiency may manifest itself in many ways: liver disease, poor liver regeneration, slow growing hair, or altered immune function.
LIVER FUNCTION TESTS
Liver function tests help determine the health of the liver by measuring levels of liver enzymes, proteins and bilirubin in the blood. Liver function tests can be used to asses acute and chronic liver disfunction.
Alanine transferase (ALT) ALT is an enzyme made by cells of the liver, an ALT test measures the amount of ALT in your blood. ALT is an enzyme that plays a crucial role in metabolism; it aids in the process that turns food into energy. the hair follicle is energetically expensive and requires high amounts of energy in the growing phase.
When higher than normal amounts of ALT is found outside of the liver it can indicate the liver is damaged or inflamed indicating a problem in phase one/two detoxification.
Damage to the liver causes an increase in ALT; the ALT can assess the amount of liver in the blood but it ca not show how much liver damage is present or how severe liver damage can become. Some drugs may affect the levels of ALT levels in your blood. Most low-normal results for ALT indicate a healthy liver. Normal range: 0 – 45 U/L Optimal range: 10 – 30 U/L
Aspartate aminitransferase (AST) AST is present in various tissues of the body. This enzyme helps trigger chemical reactions that the body need to function. Only a small amount of AST is normally found in the blood. Higher than normal amounts is associated with liver injury. Liver specialists report that AST is more likely to be related to liver injury than ALT. Normal range: 0 – 45 U/L Optimal range: 10 – 30 U/L
Albumin Albumin is the most abundant protein in the blood. A proper balance of albumin is needed to reduce leakage of fluid from blood vessels and maintain blood volume. Albumin aids in growth and repair of tissues and appendages such as the hair follicle. An abnormal albumin level indicate liver disfunction. Normal range: 35 to 55 g/L Optimal range: 38 – 40 g/L
Globulin High levels of globulin may indicate infection, inflammatory disease or immune disorders; these disorders can contribute to anaemia of chronic disease. Anaemia of chronic disease is called by iron withholding which disrupts iron metabolism; critical for the function of healthy hair follicles. Normal range: 20 to 39 g/L Optimal range: 24 – 28 g/L
Bilirubin High levels of bilirubin can indicate haemolytic anaemia; a condition where red blood cells are destroyed too quickly. Hair is dependant on an adequate supply of oxygen, the premature destruction of red blood cells can affect hair follicle cycling. Normal range: 1.7 – 20.5 umol/L Optimal range: 1.7 – 20.5 umol/L
5 SIGNS YOUR LIVER IS BEING OVERWORKED (and what to do about it)
You find it difficult to lose weight; the liver is the primary metaboliser of fat in the body. When liver function is below normal, it eventually impacts on your ability to burn fat. In addition to weight gain, it makes losing any extra pounds nearly impossible.
You have trouble digesting fatty foods; If you find you have a fatty or distended stomach after eating fatty foods, you may have a poorly functioning liver. Bile is required to digest and absorb fat, if you are not digesting fats efficiently you are not absorbing adequate amounts of the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K- vital for healthy hair, immunity, bones and much more.
You have dry, slow growing hair; the liver is the main metabolic site of the body. It produces enough energy to sustain thousands of necessary functions performed every second by the body’s cells. Your hair follicles are dependant on a constant supply of energy to grow and regenerate.
You get ill often; the liver is responsible for fighting off infections and when the liver is overworked the immune system cannot hands the extra load leaving you more prone to picking up bugs and infections.
You suffer bad PMS; the liver regulates our hormone levels, an overworked liver results in elevated levels of estrogen which can lead to mood swings and irritability. Elevated levels of estrogen leads to estrogen dominance which can lead to high amounts of thyroid binding globulin. Thyroid binding globulin binds thyroid hormones so that they can not be utilised by cells of the body. The hair follicle is dependant on adequate amounts of thyroid hormone to maintain normal growth. WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT The liver has an amazing capacity to regenerate itself. Through diet, nutritional supplementation and exercise most types of liver disfunction can be resolved.
Ditch the caffeine; Caffeine speeds up Phase I detoxification and can increase the burden on an already sluggish liver. Try a Tumeric latte with almond milk instead. Turmeric contains an active ingredient called curcumin that prevents the liver from damage and can help to regenerate new liver cells. Turmeric also helps to stimulate the production of bile, necessary for the breakdown of fats from your food.
Cut back on alcohol; Alcohol increase Phase I detoxification and a pattern of drinking that brings blood alcohol concentration to 0.08 g /dL will affect the livers capacity to regulate blood sugar and metabolise fats. A blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 g/dL will typically occur after 4 alcoholic drinks. Heavy alcohol use is defined by The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration as drinking more than 4 alcholic drinks on 5 or more days in the previous month.
Supplement to support the liver; the liver requires an adequate supply of iron to fully support its detoxification and metabolic processes. Adequate iron storage is essential for intracellular energy output, from which adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP) is produced. ATP administration reduces fat in liver cells. To generate sufficient ATP; a ferritin level over 100 ug/L is essential. Evaluating ferritin can be difficult as it is also an acute phase reactant and can be elevated in chronic and acute inflammatory conditions. Ferritin levels must be assessed in a within a broader blood panel. The phase II liver detoxification pathways is dependant on ATP. Supplementation with vitamins A, D, E and K as well as selenium will support and enhance the liver detoxification pathway.
Pump it up; Regular exercise is key to a healthy liver. Exercise decreases stress on the liver and increases energy levels. Aim for at least 4 hours of exercise, such as brisk walking, weight lifting or swimming per week.
Get tested; Even moderately raised amounts of liver enzymes can indicate fatty liver and liver disease. Fatty liver is linked to insulin resistance; insulin resistance is linked to hair loss. Be warned, even fatty livers can result in normal amounts of liver enzymes in the blood
TYPES OF LIVER DISEASE THAT CAN IMPACT HAIR GROWTH:
Caused by viruses, such as hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and hepatitis
Caused by drugs, poisons, or too much alcohol e.g fatty liver disease and cirrhosis.
Cancer of the liver.
Inherited diseases of the liver such as hemochromatosis and Wilson disease.
A WELL BALANCED DETOXIFICATION CAN SUPPORT HAIR REGROWTH Because the liver is the primary organ that controls detoxification within the body. It plays a vital role in helping achieve optimal health due to its ability to remove toxins from the blood and converting it to non toxic substances that can be eliminated in urine and faeces.
The liver also processes food and is responsible for the uptake of fat soluble vitamins for use within the hair follicle and throughout the body. When in good health, phase I and phase II of the liver detoxification pathway are well balanced and the process works to protect against harmful toxins generated from the body’s own biological activity or from the environment. Liver function is almost always compromised, when the amount of toxins within the liver itself is greater than it can process. This toxic overload can be caused by poor nutrition and by the absence of nutrients needed for the two separate phases of detoxification or as a consequence of illness or disease.
Almohanna HM, Ahmed AA, Tsatalis JP, Tosti A. The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Hair Loss: A Review. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2019;9(1):51–70. doi:10.1007/s13555-018-0278-6
Eshraghian A, Hamidian Jahromi A. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and thyroid dysfunction: a systematic review. World J Gastroenterol.2014;20(25):8102–8109. doi:10.3748/wjg.v20.i25.8102
Hodges RE, Minich DM. Modulation of Metabolic Detoxification Pathways Using Foods and Food-Derived Components: A Scientific Review with Clinical Application. J Nutr Metab. 2015;2015:760689. doi:10.1155/2015/760689
Studies: Common Prescription Drugs Linked to Increased Dementia Risk
I just came across this article which I am pasting below.
It outlines some of the things I have been saying this past three years because our parents around the world are increasingly falling victim to these terrible diseases and we could be walking with or eyes wide shut into the same problems.
I am just going to reprint the entire article below, but before you go on to read it, I would also like to recommend that anyone experience memory lapse watch the video and then take a look at this product which is available at Holland and Barrets. Seriously think about incorporate it as a daily supplement.
A study published in the journalJAMA Internal Medicineon Monday suggests that the link is strongest for certain classes of anticholinergic drugs — particularly antidepressants such as paroxetine or amitriptyline, bladder antimuscarinics such as oxybutynin or tolterodine, antipsychotics such as chlorpromazine or olanzapine and antiepileptic drugs such as oxcarbazepine or carbamazepine.
study is important because it strengthens a growing body of evidence showing that strong anticholinergic drugs have long term associations with dementia risk,” said Carol Coupland, professor of medical statistics in primary care at theUniversity of Nottinghamin the United Kingdom and first author of the study.
We wish it wasn’t the case but, unfortunately, memory loss is a hot topic. People have countless questions about brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
What really causes it?
Will there ever be a cure?
Are there any natural preventatives?
How do my other medications that I’m taking affect my risk of such problems?
In fact, many prescriptions have actually been linked to memory loss!
We hope to answer these questions and more below. So, if you or a loved one is worried about or currently living with this problem, please keep reading…
How Common Is Alzheimer’s Disease?
Most people associate Alzheimer’s with memory loss, one of first and most common symptoms of the disease. On average, the progressive (and currently) irreversible brain disorder starts affecting people after 60 years of age. However, there are many factors that contribute to an individual’s experience such as their genes, diet, lifestyle habits, and more.
According to Alzheimers.net, there are 44 million people who have Alzheimer’s or a related dementia, approximately 5,700,000 of whom are American.
Health officials expect that number to rise to 16 million by 2050. And because it’s the sixth leading cause of death in America – the only one in the top 10 that cannot be cured, prevented, or slowed – it demands everyone’s attention.
10 Early Warning Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
As outlined by the Alzheimer’s Association, they can include:
Inability to plan things or solve problems
Difficulty completing simple tasks
Getting confused about times, dates, and places
Inability to understand spatial relationships and visuals
New problems when it comes to speaking or writing
Forgetting where you put stuff and being unable to retrace steps
Increasingly poor judgement Growing less and less social
Uncharacteristic changes in mood and personality
How About Dementia?
Not unlike Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, general dementia is also a progressive syndrome that impairs your cognitive function. That is, your ability to think, reason, remember, and behave properly (if at all).
Many of the symptoms actually overlap with those of Alzheimer’s disease.
Growing by 10 million new cases per year, there are around 50 million people worldwide currently living with dementia… According to the World Health Organization, that’s a figure that we expect to hit 82,000,000 by 2030 and 152,000,000.
Although these numbers are alarming, there are numerous ways to decrease your risk of development Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia – naturally and otherwise. But the possibility of keeping the number of dementia cases to a minimum seems unlikely when so many people are on medications that can increase the likelihood of getting it… (RE READ THAT STATEMENT)
Common Drugs Like Benadryl Linked to Increased Dementia Risk
In March 2015, researchers published a prospective cohort study in JAMA Internal Medicine called “Cumulative Use of Strong Anticholinergics and Incident Dementia.”
The University of Washington and Seattle healthcare system, Group Health, conducted the long-term study which tracked 3,434 men and women who were aged 65 and up, and had no dementia when the study began.
The team accessed every participant’s history of drug use for the previous decade, including both over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Over a 7-year timeline, they followed up with all the participants every two years, during which 797 participants developed dementia (637 of whom developed Alzheimer’s disease).
As researchers looked back on what those 797 individuals took, anticholinergic drugs became the main suspect. The most common anticholinergics participants used were tricyclic antidepressants, first-generation antihistamines, and bladder antimuscarinics.
Compared to those who didn’t take anticholinergic drugs, people who did for as little as three years were 54% more likely to develop dementia.
What Are Anticholinergics?
Usually, these types of drugs are prescribed to treat problems including urinary incontinence, Parkinson’s disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD).
Anticholinergic drugs’ main purpose is to block the actions and effects of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which causes muscles to contract, activates pain responses and regulates endocrine and REM sleep functions.
It’s just a natural fact of life – as we age, our bodies’ ability to produce acetylcholine decreases. Since the brain actually contains many acetylcholine-producing cells, as Harvard editor Beverly Merz highlights, “blocking its effects can deliver a double whammy to older people.”
If you want to keep your head clear and brain functioning as highly as possible, steering clear of anticholinergic drugs seems ideal.
However, it is important to recognize that the long-term study revealed only a small portion of drugs was interfering with cognitive function. So, please discuss with your doctor if you’re thinking of getting off any prescribed medications.
Experiencing Memory Loss? It’s Not Necessarily Alzheimer’s
There are reversible dementias that, although worrisome, people can treat and even overcome. Some of these problems might surprise you:
Although this condition seems similar to dementia, the mental changes that occur in delirium happen within days in comparison to months or years. Another key distinction between these two problems is that with dementia, you maintain consciousness; with delirium, you don’t.
People with depression have likely experienced moments of forgetfulness and disorientation. A simple way to tell the difference between depression and dementia is looking at the timeline… Depressed people become depressed first and experience memory-related symptoms later, whereas people with dementia become depressed as a result of their declining cognitive function.
3) Vitamin B12 Deficiency
This crucial deficiency can lead to pernicious anemia, a rare condition associated with confusion, slowness, apathy, and irritability. If you suspect this is the case, see your doctor as soon as possible to make sure your body can even absorb vitamin B12 properly.
4) Thyroid Disease
Individuals with hypothyroidism will likely exhibit dementia-like symptoms. One of the best things you can do is get a thyroid hormone blood test to determine the best possible treatment.
People who are alcoholic can suffer bouts of confusion and amnesia which can mimic the same experiences as someone with Alzheimer’s disease. Although alcoholism can deteriorate the ability to remember and orientate oneself, abstinence and overcoming addiction can help reverse dementia.
Think You Have a Memory Problem?
This Is What You Should Do
Not all memory problems or moments of forgetfulness mean you have dementia! That alone should let you have a sigh of relief. But, if you or someone you think thinks a seemingly small memory problem is getting worse, there are a few things you can try.
First, make an appointment with your doctor and talk about your experience(s) right away. No matter the hold-ups you might have with doctors, they are our best source and can help point us in the right direction.
Second, get some blood tests done to make sure your dementia-like symptoms aren’t being caused by hormone imbalances or nutritional deficiencies such as vitamin B12.
There might even be some prescription medications that could be causing your cognitive lapses. In that case, simply ask your doctor for more details about the medications you’re taking.
Third, examine your diet and lifestyle habits. This could look like cutting out sugar, eating healthy fats, and getting a bit more daily physical activity.
It may be hard to make such habitual changes, but a perfect place to start is to visit the Alzheimer official website and downoad 8-Step Alzheimer’s Prevention Plan to Stop Memory Loss Before It Starts.
Forth, try incorporating natural supplements into your daily diet. These can include science-backed herbal remedies such as ashwagandha, turmeric, gingko biloba, and/or coconut oil!
That was a lot of information…
But, we hope that it answered any questions you may have had.
Dementia is a terrible and currgently incurable disorder that scientists, doctors, and people like you and us have all been affected by.
With the growing number of cases each year, we need to do all we can to foster a healthy and protected brain care.
If everyone plays their part, maybe we can keep this heart-breaking health problem from growing and stop walking into it with our Eyes Wide Shut!
I came across these superfoods on a home remedy info page the other day amnd was surprised to say that I eat at least three quarters of there recommendations but not as often as I should.
Aging is a natural process but, of course, we all wish we could look young and stay healthy forever. No one can offer us the Fountain of Youth (not yet), but there are some tips that can make a huge difference in slowing down the body’s aging process and leave others wondering how you stay so young.
Medicines keep us alive longer than ever before, but they have side effects. Instead of relying on medicines and beauty products, focus on your food choices. The foods you eat greatly impact how your body responds as you get older.
It is well known that poor nutrition contributes to disease and premature aging, whereas a healthy diet provides your body with essential nutrients to keep your organs in good working condition. Plus, healthy foods will help your body combat the typical problems brought on by aging.
Many foods can help defy the clock and keep you looking and feeling young for years.
Here are the top 10 anti-aging superfoods.
Walnuts are considered an amazing anti-aging food. They are high in omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, one-fourth cup of walnuts provides approximately 91 percent of the daily recommended intake of omega-3 fatty acids.These essential fatty acids help regulate your cholesterol level and reduce the risk of heart disease. They also will help your brain function properly for years to come. Plus, walnuts contain magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium, selenium, copper and fiber that are required to keep your body healthy and energetic as you age. Last but not least, they will help you keep your waistline trim as you get older.Walnuts can be eaten as a snack or added to salads, yogurt and stir-fry recipes. Be sure not to have more than a handful of unsalted walnuts at a time to keep calories in check.
Antioxidants can slow down the aging process and blueberries are the best antioxidant-rich food available. Antioxidants stop free radicals from forming in your body, which can cause serious diseases and speed up the aging process. Plus, blueberries have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help keep all your body’s cells from aging and keep your skin looking young.Blueberries can also reduce the risk of arthritis, lower cholesterol, improve eyesight and slow down cognitive deterioration that comes with Alzheimer’s disease. You can have them with your cereal, eat them with ice cream or yogurt, or have them as a fruit snack.
Evidence indicates that spinach can help you stay in top shape as you age. Spinach is a great source of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are antioxidants that greatly help reduce age-related mental decline, eye and vision conditions, and bone degeneration.
Not only that, spinach also has a high amount of vitamins C and E as well as beta-carotene, all of which help protect the skin from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays so your skin remains vibrant and healthy even as you age. In addition, this green vegetable can help prevent cardiovascular disease, lower high blood pressure and lower cholesterol. It can even reduce the risk of cancer in the digestive tract.
Just one cup of fresh spinach daily can keep your body healthy and your skin young for years. You can eat spinach in salad, soup or juice form.
4. Green Tea
Green tea is used in a host of beauty products due to its powerful antioxidant properties, which help protect the skin from harmful free radicals that cause wrinkling, brown spots and skin aging. These antioxidants can slow down premature aging and help keep your skin supple and looking young. This healthy beverage also helps protect against skin cancer.
Green tea has also been shown to help prevent heart disease and high cholesterol, prevent and reduce the risk of rheumatoid arthritis, and help you preserve bone density. If you wish to look younger than your age, one or two cups of green tea daily can help a lot. You can also try green tea supplements.
Salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and hence can be used to delay the aging process. Omega-3 fatty acids help prevent cholesterol buildup in the arteries, protect against abnormal heart rhythms and keep you mentally sharp as you age.
The anti-inflammatory properties and high protein content of salmon also help keep your skin free from blemishes, acne breakouts and various signs of aging like wrinkles, brown spots, crow’s feet and fine lines. Plus, salmon contains a chemical called astaxanthin, which gives your skin a youthful appearance. In addition, this cold water fish is rich in anti-aging nutrients like vitamins D and E. Try to have three or four servings of salmon per week. You can opt for grilled, smoked or baked salmon.
Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables can significantly slow down the aging process. Broccoli is high in antioxidants and contains an impressive number of anti-aging nutrients. This superfood contains the compounds sulforaphane and indoles, which help protect against oxidative stress, cell damage and even cancer.
The B-vitamin folate in broccoli will help your brain work properly for years, while the vitamin K1 increases bone density and reduces fracture risk. Plus, it is rich in artery-clearing fiber, bone-strengthening calcium and heart-healthy potassium.
One serving of broccoli three or four times per week can make a difference in your health and how you age. Try to always eat fresh broccoli rather than frozen broccoli.
7. Olive Oil
Several studies have concluded that olive oil can make you look younger than your age. Olive oil is high in antioxidants, including vitamins A and E. While vitamin A protects the skin from free radicals that are known to accelerate the aging process, vitamin E aids in skin repair and renewal.
Higher intake of olive oil means less fine lines, fewer wrinkles, a more even skin tone and smooth texture. The monounsaturated fatty acids in olive oil can also improve heart health, lower cholesterol levels, and control blood sugar.
To enjoy the anti-aging benefits of olive oil, use it as your regular cooking oil. Also, this healthy oil can be used as bath oil and as a topical moisturizer.
8. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants that help protect your body from free radicals, which cause oxidative damage to cells. Free radicals can speed up the aging process and also cause different types of cancer.
The cocoa present in dark chocolate has flavanols that encourage blood vessels to relax, keeping them youthful, supple and pliable. This in turn lowers risk of high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and dementia. Eat dark chocolate in moderation, as it is high in calories and saturated fat that can cause weight gain. Stick to a small piece of dark chocolate with higher cocoa percentage.
Garlic has many health benefits and has been used for ages to slow down the aging process. It has allicin that works as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent. Allicin helps keep the body free from harmful free radicals. Garlic is also useful for decreasing blood pressure and cholesterol, removing heavy metals from the body, preventing cancer and acting as an antifungal and antiviral agent.
Plus, it contains vitamins A, B and C, selenium, iodine, potassium, iron, calcium, zinc and magnesium that are essential to keep your body in good health. To enjoy the anti-aging as well as other health benefits of garlic, try to eat two raw garlic cloves daily. Also, use garlic in your cooking.
A tomato a day can reverse the effects of aging. Tomato’s anti-aging benefits are credited to lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that protects the skin from harmful free radicals. Lycopene acts as a natural sun block, preventing the UV damage that causes sun spots, dryness and wrinkles. Also, a tomato-rich diet boosts the production of collagen, the protein that keeps skin supple. Tomatoes also have the ability to cut cholesterol, prevent heart disease as well as ward off a range of cancers.
For optimum health and good looking skin, try to drink one glass of tomato juice daily. You can also have tomatoes in your salad or soup. Include these foods in your diet plan to boost your health and reduce the impacts of aging. Along with these foods, you need to follow a healthy lifestyle for better health and looks.
A friend of over thirty years has just been told that she needs a liver transplant! She does not smoke or drink and use to be a aerobics teacher!
So I started to look up some advice about ways to maintain our liver health especially as most of our food and water has synthetic products added to them.
Article by Diane Shawe M.ED
Well it would seem that Beetroot support liver health (one of our main detox organs) and are full of nutrients and antioxidants. Beet roots are an incredible food and if you can use the leaves also, even better.
According to Jo Robinson, author of Eating on the Wild Side, beets are some of the highest antioxidant foods and have nine times more antioxidants than tomatoes and fifty times more antioxidants than carrots! Beets’ unique combination of phytonutrients and antioxidants have been shown to be especially helpful in reducing chronic inflammation.
Beets have a special pigment, betalin, which strongly supports the body’s phase 2 detoxification process.
Phase 2 detoxification is when the body neutralises and removes potentially harmful substances from the body by making them water soluble.
Beets can also spice up your love life! They are high in boron, an element that has shown to increase testosterone levels and therefore sex drive in both sexes.
Beets have also been shown to widen blood vessels. This increased blood flow throughout the body also supports sexual health. What about beet greens?
Beet greens are some of the healthiest greens available at your supermarket and have a similar nutrient profile to kale. If you buy beets with the greens attached you’ll know you are buying recently harvested beets, which can also have greater nutrient levels.
I know you can get jars of beetroot soaked in vinegar, but if you can get the freshly grown from the market I believe this will be better for you.
So what else?
Pepper It’s easy to dismiss pepper as a common spice. Its commonality almost makes it boring. What’s fascinating about peppers that it accounts for 1/5 of the total spice trade in the world! Besides adding a pleasant taste to our food, black pepper is a warming stimulant that promotes good digestion.
I think the most amazing thing I found out about black pepper is its ability to increase the bioavailability of our herbs and foods. Adding a bit of black pepper to herbal formulas or to our dinner plate means that we have increased the qualities and nutrients available to us.
So here’s a couple of delicious recipes to help you detox your liver.
Check out our super easy recipe to make a fresh and delicious Spanish ‘Beetroot Salmorejo’
Time: 15 mins
Yield: 4 people
400 g Beetroot (- Boiled)
600 g Tomato
8 units Strawberries (- Medium size)
100 g Breadcrumbs
2 cloves Garlic
Put everything in a blender, add two cups of water and blend until smooth. Pour out into small saucepan bring to boil and then turn down and simmer for 20 minutes.
Peppery Borscht Today’s beet borscht recipe is a beloved and traditional soup from Russia. Borscht soup is a fantastic way to support your body’s natural detox abilities while enjoying a delicious soup. There are lots of different borscht recipes out there.
In this version that I found it includes those incredibly nutritious beet greens and added extra pepper for zing and increased nutrient absorption.
What you’ll need…
1 1/2 cups cubed potatoes
2 cups cubed beets
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
4 garlic cloves minced
1 cup chopped beet greens
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
1 celery stalk,
chopped 1 large carrot,
sliced 3 cups coarsely chopped purple cabbage
2-3 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
2 bay leaves a couple
handfuls of shitake mushrooms
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup tomato puree sour cream (optional) green onions for garnish
Heat the butter in a large pot. Sauté the onions until they are translucent. Add the garlic, caraway seeds, salt, pepper, bay leaves. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the celery, carrots, cabbage, beets, potatoes, mushrooms and stock. Simmer until all the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.
Stir in the balsamic vinegar, beet greens, honey and tomato puree. Cover and simmer for 5 more minutes. Serve with a dollop of sour cream (optional) and green onions for garnish.
Source of info and recipe
Rosalee de la Forêt Rosalee is the Education Director of Learning Herbs and author of Alchemy of Herbs: Transform Everyday Ingredients Into Foods & Remedies That Heal. She is passionate about helping people discover the world of herbalism and natural health. Rosalee teaches at international herbal conferences and runs a popular herbal mentoring program. Read more about Rosalee https://learningherbs.com/remedies-recipes/beet-borscht-recipe/