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Ginkgo Biloba Improves Circulation

Ginkgo Biloba has long been in the news and recent trials have completed where Ginkgo Biloba did display a therapeutic effectiveness. The herb’s results were at the very least on par with the prescription drug used for this study.

Over a long period of time, ginkgo biloba has developed a well deserved reputation for its main health benefits associated with improved blood circulation in the body and especially in the brain. Many health practitioners have recognized the medicinal herb’s outstanding results when it comes to improving memory and overall brain functions.

This explains why Europeans have often favoured using ginkgo biloba in order to treat ailments such as dementia.

Ginkgo Biloba Compared To Drugs For Dementia Treatment.

The ginkgo leaves contain chemicals (flavonoids and terpenoids) that act as important antioxidants inhibiting the damage free radicals can cause from expanding within your body and cells, something that’s even more important as you age. By fighting off these particles, ginkgo biloba’s effects help prevent debilitating health conditions such as heart disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

This herb’s principal quality is its ability to increase and improve blood flow by dilating blood vessels, therefore its no surprise that various laboratory tests and animal studies showed that its flavonoids protect the nerves, heart muscle, blood vessels and retina from damage.

Ginkgo Biloba & Alzheimer’s

Studies about Alzheimer’s disease and general dementia have shown that Ginkgo Biloba can reduce the symptoms of Alzheimer’s when compared with placebos, although more research needs to be done in order to validate ginkgo biloba’s true worth with such health problems. Up to now, it’s more important to note that it does improve thinking, learning and overall cognitive functions; plus it improves social behavior while also reducing feelings of depression.

Although there seems to be a lack of faith amongst the medical community in regards to ginkgo biloba’s ability to somewhat protect or at least improve on conditions of dementia, a study reported by the European Journal of Neurology showed that it can create neuroprotective effects with neurodegenerative diseases of multifactorial origin.

The study’s main purpose was to analyze ginkgo biloba’s efficacy in slowing down symptoms of dementia with patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. The clinical tests were conducted over a period of 24 weeks, placebo-controlled and randomized. The participants averaged between 50 and 80 years of age, all suffered from dementia but none of them were at an advanced stage. Three groups were formed, the first one was given daily doses of ginkgo biloba, the second, a daily dose of a drug called donepezil, while the last consisted of the placebo group.

The results recorded from this trial clearly showed that ginkgo biloba did display therapeutic effectiveness. The herb’s results were at the very least on par with the prescription drug used for this study. Needless to say, when faced with similar results, the medicinal herb always has the advantage of not leaving toxic by-products in the body, which is unfortunately what every drug does. As previously mentioned, more conclusive evidence from serious scientific research is needed in order to truly validate ginkgo biloba’s real potential.

Go for Juice to Detox

Homemade Juice is Great For Detox

Homemade juice recipes are a great way for overall detoxification and removal of toxic heavy metals. Juice certainlyJuice to detox has some advantages, but let’s be clear here, juice should never totally replace eating whole fruit and vegetables. The reason for this is that juicing removes fiber from fruit and vegetables and fiber is important for keeping us regular. If we do not have enough fiber in the diet then the colon can become sluggish and toxins can be re-absorbed into the blood stream before they have a chance to be removed.

On the plus side juicing excels in the amount of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and enzymes that it can deliver in just one drink, much easier to take. Carrot juice for example would need around 8 to 10 large carrots to produce one glass of juice, what would you prefer eating 10 carrots or drink one glass of juice? Research has found that juices taken without meals are more effective at aiding the liver in the detoxification process, this is thought to be because the liver doesn’t have the job of detoxification both the meal and the juice at once. Continue reading “Go for Juice to Detox”

Natural aids for a Healthy Heart

Herbs, Minerals and Spices for a Healthy Heart

There are many natural herbs, minerals and spices to protect your heart, here are just a few from Mother Nature.

healthy heartMagnesium

Magnesium helps to prevent heart attacks, it regulates blood pressure and helps with heart arrhythmia as well as having many other health benefits. Due to our modern diet and our mineral depleted soil it is estimated that 80% to 95% of us are deficient in magnesium.

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne is known to be one of the most powerful heart healthy substances. It not only stimulates and strengthens the heart but also balances blood pressure and calms palpitations. Because of its hot kick you may want to start small and work your way up to larger amounts, cayenne can also be added to drinks and cayenne supplements are available. Continue reading “Natural aids for a Healthy Heart”

Cut Back on Sugar!

Cut back on your sugar intake!

Just cut back to start with,  no need to cut it out!

If you consume more than 74g of added fructose a day which is about two to three soft drinks you are 87% more likely to have a higher blood pressure than people who take less, according to a recent study.

Researchers believe excess fructose/sugar may reduce the production of nitric oxide, which is a gas that helps blood vessels dilate and relax. But here are some comparisons and shocking facts.

White table sugar has a GI of 65, and a GL of 65. In other words, a GI or GL of 65 is sufficient to generate the undesirable blood effects that sugar has. Now lets compare this to what we believe are some healthy foods.

Rice Krispies. The GI of Rice Krispies cereal is 82, higher than table sugar, GL is 72, also higher.
Corn Flakes. Corn Flakes have a GI 81 and a GL 70, also higher than sugar.
Rice Cakes. Many people on diets use these to quell hunger, GI 78, GL 64.
Shredded Wheat.  This cereal has a  GI 75, GL 62.

All of the foods above with GI’s and GL’s that equal or exceed table sugar are made with either wheat, cornstarch, or rice starch.

Some, such as Shredded Wheat and rice cakes don’t even have any added sugar. The effects of raising blood sugar together with cholesterol distorting effects are in the absence of added sugar. This is due to the wheat, cornstarch or rice starch alone.

Some of these foods even bear “heart healthy” claims.  This came about because in the past, low fat was associated with a “heart healthy” and resulted in manufacturers claims.

There are hundreds of processed foods that promote this claim despite the flagrant sugar damaging effects. The sad part is that when most people have a bowl of this cereal what’s the first thing they do? – Sprinkle on the sugar!

Think about it!

Heart Disease in Women

Heart disease is the greatest killer in the modern world

A little known fact is that more women than men actually die from heart disease each year. It is the leading health problem that kills women and NOT cancer, a common myth.

Lifestyle Changes

With just 5 lifestyle changes it can make a massive difference and will cut your heart attack risk by a huge 92%. These changes are:

  • Drinking alcohol in moderation
  • A healthy fiber rich diet
  • Regular daily exercise
  • Controlling body weight
  • Not smoking

In actual fact if you only incorporate the first two items in this list you can cut your risk by more than HALF!

Benefits of Fish Oil and Vitamin D

Benefits of Omega 3

According to recent research into multivitamins and stated by Dariush Mozaffarian, MD, DrPH, who is an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

“The only dietary supplement consistently shown in randomized clinical trials to work against cardiac death is fish oil,” The fatty acids in Omega 3 stabilize the heart’s electrical system, it also lowers the blood pressure and triglycerides, in turn this should slow the build-up of arterial plaque and ease systemic inflammation.

Also according to an Italian study, fish oil was more successful than statins at preventing death in heart failure patients. Vitamin D also has a wide range of health benefits, too little amounts can raise the risk of peripheral artery disease by up to 80% and makes the chances greater for developing diabetes.

What is the source of Vitamin D?

Strangely enough Vitamin D is not found in many foods and you will not get any from plant based foods unless of course it is added to them. Vitamin D is naturally found in oily fish such as tuna, sardines and salmon.

Sunlight and Vitamin D

The body actually makes Vitamin D when your skin is exposed to the ultraviolet B rays present in the sun. You should have around 10 – 30 minutes of exposure twice a week to your face, arms, back or legs, easier said than done in some countries! So make the most of the sun when you can, even on a chilly day the suns rays still filter through. You could also take a Vitamin D supplement. So now you know why everyone seems in a better mood on a sunny day!

Olive Oil is Beneficial to your Heart

Choose Olive Oil Against Butter or Margarine

Everyone should be using Olive Oil wherever possible as it will lower your (bad) LDL cholesterol and raise your (good)Bottles of Olive Oil HDL cholesterol.

Being naturally rich in antioxidants it can also help reduce the risk of Cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. Try to use it instead of butter or margarine, drizzle it on salads or on bread, it makes very good Garlic bread and is a lot healthier than butter, use it to replace vegetable oil in baking wherever possible.

Olive Oil After taste

If you have childhood memories of going on holiday abroad where they used to fry everything in Olive oil where it had a strong after taste then try it again, that aftertaste has marginally gone with refinement on most of the commercially available Olive oils. The cold-pressed Extra Virgin has more Antioxidants so is better for you than the others, however if you still find the Extra Virgin too strong then go for the 2nd or 3rd press to start with. Even if you choose to stay with the 2nd or 3rd press it will be a whole lot better for your heart than butter or other vegetable oils.

While Olive oil has proven health benefits if you must use a spread then try to forget about butter, instead choose a spread with cholesterol lowering sterols such as Flora. It has been proven that by adding these plant compounds to your diet you can help lower your total cholesterol by up to 10% and often in a couple of weeks, just give it a try!

Red Wine and Heart Health

Red Wine is Good For Your Heart

It has been shown that one to three ounces of alcohol per day can greatly reduce the risk of heart attack and that red wine could help against any further heart attacks if you have already had one. The Flavonoid Phenolics,  Antioxidants and Resveratrol present in red wine are thought to be responsible.

Resveratrol in Red Wine

Resveratrol which is found in grape skins is thought to increase HDL cholesterol levels and prevent blood clotting. Flavonoids also have antioxidant properties and can help prevent both blood clotting and plaque forming in arteries.

However if you have a problem with alcohol or high blood pressure it is not recommended to start drinking alcohol but you could take a Resveratrol supplement, otherwise it is safe to assume that you can have one alcoholic drink a day, so why not make it red wine.