Monday, April 30, 2007

Reiki Controversies - Many Paths to One Tradition

Dialogs about Reiki are good, and keep Reiki fresh and dynamic. About 10 years ago, I went through a very long time of disillusionment about Reiki, just as its founder, Mikao Usui did during his early days of healing and teaching using the Reiki energy. In the end, I was even more deeply committed to the Reiki energy than ever before. The stories, the histories, and the people were only part of the path that the Reiki energy itself used to come to us. I could see that the core energy was the important thing and always managed to come through, no matter the controversies and confusions.

I was taught Reiki by two masters, one of whom was taught by two other masters, one with a "traditional" Alliance path, and one with a maverick path. My second Reiki Master was very non-traditional. His lineage was non-traditional from Takata forward.

I studied for several years during the 90's with two Reiki Alliance Masters. They were both beautiful women, and though I respected their traditional ways, in the end, took a less traditional Reiki path. I paid 10,000 units of energy for my Reiki Mastery, which I worked through with my master. I was very committed to my process, and to learning everything I could to enhance my abilities as a teacher. I understand the reasoning of paying $10,000 and respect those who go in that direction. I chose a different path, or could say rather, that it chose me. I do not charge that much for my mastery classes, but make it very clear to my students that for the energy to come through most clearly, it helps to give a lot of energy in exchange (at least, 10,000 units) if not directly to me, then to the universe in service or tithing, or some other way.

The various opinions on which is the best way, or the purest way, or the right way, to do or experience Reiki is old patterning moving up and out. Ego will always play a part in everything we humans do. But, masters know that the intent of the distance symbol is to bring us to a higher place, if even for only a short time. We can meet the divinity in another from the highest place in us, and know their absolute perfection, humbly allowing whatever purpose the Reiki energy has brought us together for.

I have always been taught, and believe, and do my best to pass on to my students, that it is not so much about "mastering" the energy, as learning to be "mastered" by it. The true teachers are not the ones in your lineage. They can pass on the energy to you, along with their interpretations about the energy, and the stories they have been told, but ONLY REIKI, itself, can actually teach you anything. It will take you where you need to go for your greatest and deepest healings. It is always there to help you respond to whatever arises. It will gently lead you to the truth of who you are, and if you resist, it will be there to comfort and guide you.

It is a miracle that Reiki has come to us in any form... Those whose hands touched our crowns through attunements are blessed gifts, and are divine beings in their own rights. We are grateful, and pass it on, in as sacred a way as we know... visions of bubbles or not, $10,000 or not, weekend courses or not, published symbols or not.

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Saturday, April 28, 2007

When It's More Than Just Heartburn - Acid Reflux Info

It is imperative that you learn the right acid reflux info to keep yourself from thinking that those more than occasional sessions of heartburn are just that.

In actuality, frequent heartburn may in fact be warning signs that you suffer from acid reflux. Without understanding what this is, or how it is caused, you might end up doing damage to your throat.

Acid reflux is not an illness that simply goes away, but it is something that you will need to be able to recognize so you can better treat the symptoms and get to the root cause. Using acid reflux information is the first step of many you will have to take.

To begin, you must realize what causes acid reflux. How else are you to learn how to deal with it?

To put it simply: your throat has a group of muscles located at the bottom called the lower esophageal sphincter (it is usually just called LES). This is what prevents acid reflux from occurring. When this ring of muscle is closed, no stomach acid can get through. It is far too tight, only opening to allow food to pass through. It should close again after that happens.

Acid reflux occurs when the LES muscles cannot close. Stomach acid is no longer blocked and makes its way past the LES and into your throat. This can do severe damage.

The skin of your throat is not as thick or well-protected as the lining of your stomach. Acid can easily irritate, scar, cause bleeding, etc. Thus, because acid reflux can be extremely harmful to you body, it is important for you to gather as much acid reflux knowledge as you can, to keep acid reflux from happening. The effects of acid reflux are harmful to your throat and can be more than just the annoyance of heartburn.

As was previously mentioned, the LES muscles are what block acid from coming into your throat. When they relax (refuse to close) is when you will have complications.

There are two things that will cause the problems.

One: the throat is relaxed due to food. Your body may reject certain items or may simply react to the ingredients. There are properties found in foods that can force your LES muscles to relax. Caffeine, coffee, tea and other items naturally work against the muscles, causing them to remain open when they should close.

Two: the throat is relaxed due to contractual difficulties. Your LES muscles may themselves be the problem, rather than food. They may not be able to operate as they need to. This could be due to a narrow throat, inflammation, etc. Acid reflux can be the result of a larger problem with this option, as further investigation into acid reflux info will determine.

For information on treating and preventing acid reflux through natural means sign up for the free newsletter below.

It is important to note, however, that the first cause is the most common. Abnormalities with the LES muscles are rare. Usually, the cause of acid reflux is your body's reactions to the food and drinks you consume. It will be up to you, then, to study yourself and see what happens when you have certain items.

You now know how acid reflux happens; you know why it happens. Using this acid reflux info is just a practical way to begin figuring out what you need to keep the effects from reoccurring.

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Cooking Up a Home Remedy for Acid Reflux

If you have the appropriate tools and the right ingredients, cooking up a home remedy for acid reflux is a very good idea. Otherwise, you could devote your time to creating a concoction that might not even address your acid reflux symptoms. However, if you do not have the tools nor the ingredients, your home remedy for acid reflux could create more problems than just the pain of the acid reflux you are currently experiencing. A more appropriate solution would be to shop at your local health food store for a ready-made natural acid reflux remedy that has worked for other people. Carefully consider your options and outcomes before you decide whether your time is better spent cooking up home remedy for acid reflux or shopping for one that's ready-made and already tested.

If you do decide that cook up a home remedy for acid reflux in your kitchen is your solution, use only the finest and purest ingredients. You should consult various sources regarding the proper preparation of the home remedy for acid reflux that you have chosen. You should also learn how to properly use your home remedy for acid reflux in order to gain the healing properties it promises. And, of course, you need to educate yourself about the possible negative effects of your home remedy for acid reflux.

Creating a home remedy for acid reflux that is not effective and wastes your ingredients and time is pointless. Perhaps you would be better off finding relief quicker if you spent your time shopping for a remedy that will relieve your acid reflux symptoms rather than creating one. Only you can decide whether to buy or to make a home remedy for acid reflux.

If immediate relief in the form of pre-prepared medication is not imperative, you just might decide that cooking up your own home remedy for acid reflux is the way to go. After all, you do stand the chance of not only curbing the symptoms but also curing your acid reflux.

There are plenty of guides available for creating a home remedy for acid reflux. Your local health food store is a good source for instructions for making a home remedy for acid refluxand numerous other health related issues. You can begin with one of these guides.

You should carefully follow all the instructions in order to properly develop your home remedy for acid reflux. Fortunately, you will probably find you can make a home remedy for acid reflux using ingredients that you may already have. The result will be a home remedy for acid reflux that provides welcome relief from the symptoms in a reasonably short period of time.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

How to Get Rid of Genital Warts

If you are suffering from genital warts then I suspect that the first thing that comes through your mind is: �How to Get Rid of Genital Warts�, and you would be right. You should be aware that in some cases the genital warts are visible and quite unpleasant to look at but in other cases they just won�t be visible.

Unfortunately some people will do everything they can to get rid of genital warts before seeking a doctor or physician help. For some people it is very difficult to admit they are suffering from this disease as there is very often a part shame associated with genital warts and STD�s in general.

Unfortunately there is too much people suffering from warts in secret. This condition often come with its loads of shame, they rather prefer suffering in secret instead of seeing their doctor to admit they are suffering from warts. They often do all they can to get rid of their genital warts by themselves.

If you are one of those person you must be careful not every over the counter medicine are good for treating genital warts. In fact most of them, if not all, are way to strong to apply to such a sensible area. On top of that you won�t get rid of genital warts as these medications (for removing warts) are not useful to get rid of your problem.

I would advise you against such methods. In some case it can make your situation a lot worse. These medication have some acidic ingredients which is far to strong to apply in your genital area.

Rest assured there are other method to get rid of genital warts, but I would strongly advise you to first seek a doctor�s assistance to get a proper diagnosis of your condition. This in turn will make sure you get the proper treatment.

Once you get a proper diagnosis it�s only a matter of deciding which kind of treatment you will use to get rid of your genital warts. Once again you should discuss this matter with your physician to be aware of the various options that are available to you.

Overall the decision you will have to take is between using surgical methods to get rid of your genital warts or use medication to help you solve your problem.

These two are probably amongst the most viable options to get rid of genital warts. Of course the treatment you will choose will only depend on your preference in the matter. Of course your general health condition will also be a determinant factor. If you are pregnant then you probably should go with the surgical methods as you will not be able to use most of the prescription medication if not all that are commonly used to get rid of genital warts.

Make sure you take all those factors into account when you are looking for the right genital warts cure. You need to be well informed on the various ways to get rid of genital warts.

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Alternative Therapy Of Liver Diseases

Inherited genes are found to be one of the reasons for liver diseases. Inherited liver diseases may affect children of parents who do not have any symptoms of liver disease. But the disease could have been passed down from grandparents.

Treating liver diseases with gene therapy would be one of the ways of dealing with liver diseases. These gene therapies would play an important role in future treatments and might replace surgeries and drugs that are currently used to treat liver diseases.
The developments in molecular biology will play an important role in the future treatments of the liver diseases. Diagnosis of patients using methods like polymerase chain reaction is making changes in the way liver diseases are diagnosed.

Defective genes that are the root cause of inherited liver disease are detectable. Recombinant DNA technology is used for identifying the defective genes to prepare medicines and drugs for treating patients with liver diseases.

Mutations are identified now earlier than just a few years ago and appropriate methods can be used earlier for more effective treatment. Preventive treatment using such DNA technologies is possible and this will be used more frequently in the future. Apart from Gene therapy, nucleic acid based therapies will likely be used in the future for treating patients with liver diseases.

SIR-Spheres method

Another type of treatment that would gain popularity in the future is the SIR-Spheres method. This is one of the new methods of treating patients using radiation. In this method microscopic spheres are injected into the liver. These spheres have radioactive materials that are used to treat liver diseases.

Usually the radioactive material is Yttrium-90. Using this method, the radiation that is given to the liver is increased many times more than by using ordinary radiation therapy. It is estimated that up to 40 times more radiation can be given using this SIR-Sphere method. The treatment time is also reduced using this method.

The immune cells in the liver are called macrophages. It has been found that these macrophages are responsible for causing scarring and eliminating scarring in the liver.

There are two types of macrophages, one which causes scarring and the other which eliminates scarring.Research is going on to study the macrophages. Extensive research in this area might lead to dramatic changes in the liver treatments of the future. If the mechanism by which the scarring is eliminated is understood, it has a great potential to change the way the liver diseases are treated in the future.

Homeopathic medicines are also used by many to treat the symptoms of their liver diseases. The most common homeopathic remedies that are used to treat liver diseases are Bryonia, Mercurius, Podophyllum, Chelidonium, Digitalis, Myrica cerifera, Nux vomica, Lycopodium, Carduus marinas, Sculpture, Phosphorus, and Taraxacum.

Each one of these remedies is used to cure liver diseases and its symptoms are only used under specific conditions.

The homeopathic medicine Byronia is used to treat liver disease patients who have pain in the right hypochondria. The other homeopathic remedies that can be given to patients for treating pain are Kali carbonicum and Chelidonium.

Mercurius is the other homeopathic remedy that is used to treat children with jaundice. Persons who have abused quinine and acquired a liver disease can also be treated with Mercurius. Although it is most often patients who have abused quinine, Mercurius is also widely used for treating children with simple jaundice.

Podophyllum is another homeopath that is used for treating liver diseases and is similar to that of Mercurius. Chelidonium is used for jaundice and biliousness and also in hepatic congestion. Some people may get jaundice due to certain heart diseases. For such patients, Digitalis would be the right kind of homeopathic remedy. The worst cases of jaundices are often treated with Digitalis effectively.

Nux vomica, also called poison nut, is touted by many as one of the best and the first herbal remedy given to patients who acquired liver disease due to alcoholic addiction or quinine. If anger is the main cause of jaundice, then Nux vomica is said by many to be the best option to start with for treatment Consult a homeopathic practitioner for the usage of other homeopathic remedies for treating liver diseases as many of these herbal remedies can be posionous if taken wrong. And as always, consult your physician who is always the ultimate authority on your health care strategies.


Friday, April 20, 2007

Aromatherapy - Myrrh Essential Oil for Radiant Health - Properties, Actions & Effects

Myrrh ( Commiphora myrrha ) - PROPERTIES & ACTIONS INCLUDE:

Anti-inflammatory - controls, alleviates inflammation resulting from injury or infection

Antifungal - destroys or inhibits growth of fungus

Antiseptic - prevents, halts infection

Astringent - causes contraction of organic tissues

Expectorant - helps promote the removal of mucus from respiratory system

Immune stimulant - an agent that quickens the physiological functions of the body's immune system, temporarily increases immune function, good for convalescence, poor circulation, listlessness, physical fatigue

Restorative - an agent that helps to strengthen and revive the body systems

Sedative - agent that exerts a soothing, tranquilizing, calming effect on the body, ood for nervous tension, stress, insomnia, anxiety and palpitations

Skin tonic - strengthens and enlivens skin cells

Strong, sweet and woody Myrrh's enduring aroma anchors other oils in a blend.

An ancient and sacred oil Myrrh's soothing and astringent action make it excellent for relieving a wide variety of skin conditions, including: acne, sensitive, oily or dry, wrinkled, chapped, or cracked skin.

Traditionally Myrrh has been used for enhancing spiritual and emotional well-being. Myrrh is an excellent aid to healthy functioning of the limbic, emotional center of your brain.

Myrrh wakes up cell tissues and enhances the physical energetic centers of the body. Its vibrant and resonant effect on cell tissues makes it a wonderful tonic for body, mind, spirit and emotions.
Myrrh promotes healthy immune function.

It good for treating respiratory conditions and has a decongesting and drying effect on excess mucous and wet conditions like: asthma, bronchitis, phlegm and respiratory congestion.

Myrrh oil has an especial affinity for the endrocrine (hormonal) glands and is useful for promoting circulation within the endocrine glands and associated chakra centers.

May be helpful for dispelling congestion and promoting healthy function of the thyroid, prostate and pituitary glands.

Blend Myrrh with Helichrysum for softening lines, scars and other adhesions.

Myrrh's antiseptic action make it a helpful aid for treating: sinusitis, flu, colds and coughs.

Its strongly anti-fungal properties are good for relieving athlete's foot and ringworm.

Myrrh has been used to heal cold sores, canker sores and gum disease.

CAUTION: Due to its stimulating properties please avoid Myrrh during pregnancy.

PLEASE NOTE: There are many cheap, synthetic copies of aromatic oils, but these are not recommended for therapeutic use. For best results purchase the highest quality oils you can possibly find. Use certified organic essential oils, or oils that have been tested and are pesticide free.

Holistic MindBody Therapy, including pure essential oils, are gentle, noninvasive complementary forms of health care for balancing and synchronizing your body, mind and spirit and a natural, safe and effective way to enhance your health and well-being. Holistic health care often produces satisfying results where other methods have failed. Please consult with your physician regarding serious health concerns and do not attempt to self diagnose.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Hugs - Improve Health, Increase Happiness and End Conflict With Hugs

FREE HUGS. What image comes to mind when you read this phrase? What would you do if someone approached you with a sign saying "Free Hugs"? Imagine what it would be like to give and get free hugs. What effects would these hugs have on you and others? Could hugs be used to improve relationships? Improve health? Heal emotional wounds? Change politics? Create compassion and understanding? Here's my story about free hugs and their affects.

The "Free Hugs" video (You can find it on inspired a group of 20 people in Oaxaca, Mexico, (where I live) to go out and give free hugs. We weren't affiliated with any social, political or religious group. We were going out to give "free hugs" because we liked the video, because the people in Oaxaca during the political conflict that existed in 2006 needed a hug, and because it resonated with something deep inside of us.

We gathered together with our signs "Free Hugs" or "I'll give you a hug," then walked down the main pedestrian walkway in Oaxaca City to the Zocalo (Central Square). At first I felt strange just like the looks people gave me when they saw my sign. Who was I to be giving them a hug? How would they react?

I gave hugs to anyone I encountered: kids, parents, couples, singles, young and old walking down the street, workers in shops, street vendors, teachers, politicians and more. To give hugs to complete strangers is a unique sensation. There is an awkwardness and distrust that appears at first, and then shifts as the hug transpires. Yet, each hug was special. Some people would smile and walk by. Some people wanted a hug but were too afraid to receive one. Others would hesitate then shyly or uncertainly receive a hug if I went up to them. Some hugs were tentative, shy and uncomfortable, others were light and free. A few people came to me with arms outstretched. One woman called me over asking for hugs for her and her friends. Some even gave a kiss on the check. Many hugs were deep, intense, enveloping and loving. Some hugs were filling needs for touch, for compassion, for understanding. Others were recharging depleted energy and receiving acceptance to those feeling beaten down or misunderstood. Other hugs were for fun. Looks of gratitude came, smiles, tenderness, softening and joy. A connection formed as we touched. Every person, whether receiving a hug or only observing, smiled. This impressed me. What a transformation!

I was changed in that that 2 hour period I gave hugs. I received hugs, not only gave them. I too was being touched physically, mentally and emotionally. I could feel my heart opening. I asked myself when the last time I received hugs for two hours was. I couldn't remember one time. I was being touched and cherished during those hours of hugging as I was touching and cherishing others. I felt recharged, energized and happy. I made heart contact with people.

This experience was recorded in the memories of the inhabitants of Oaxaca in photos in the newspapers, conversations on the radio and personal conversations by those who gave and received hugs, and those who only heard about it. This "touching" experience (no pun intended) is a wonderful sign of the value of hugging. People were impressed and delighted with the positive effect it had. It is a beautiful experience to give hugs to total strangers. It reminded me that we are ONE, all part of the family called humanity.

Hugging can be very healing. It is different than other energetic healing modalities because hugging is something that anyone can see, feel and experience. I love energy work, but many people haven't grasped how energy work based on spirituality plays out in the physical world. Hugs bring the spiritual and physical worlds together in a delightful fashion. These hugs were energy that became tangible. They made spirituality tangible. I highly recommend it.

What could we heal with hugs? Could we heal a hurt, the pain from a sarcastic word, loneliness, sadness, fear, anger, hate, despair, illnesses, and conflicts? Wouldn't you prefer to give a hug instead of responding with anger and rejection? How much conflict could you resolve by giving hugs? Maybe we can't heal all wounds with a hug, but it sure is a nice place to start. Go ahead; give yourself a hug each day. Your body will thank you for it. Hug a friend, parent, spouse, partner, neighbor, child or pet. Hug someone when you feel good and especially when you don't. Go ahead, give it a try. See how it feels. See how your hugs affect you and those who receive them.

Go to my website to receive my gift to you, an EFT script and audio for peace in English or Spanish. Click on the following link to view it and/or download it. Click Find the Light Within
to enter the site. For English click on the icon EFT Scripts/Audios, for Spanish click on Escritos/Audios de EFT.
Let's spread peace by creating it within each one of us and then sharing that peace.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Underlying Acne problems

The skin is a mirror to the internal health of your body; therefore to treat all skin complaints, you need to start from the inside out. Researchers have made a link between dysbiosis - a disturbance in the natural balance of flora in the gut - and acne.

In Chinese medicine, the skin is known as the "fourth organ of elimination." The colon, liver and kidneys are the organs responsible for cleansing the body of toxins. When they are overburdened with mucus and toxic waste matter, an eruption can occur upon the skin.

Sadly, adult acne is not only a fact of life - it is on the increase. There are now 12 different types of acne affecting some 3% of the population and contrary to popular belief, it is not caused by junk diets or poor hygiene but by a hormonal imbalance, the skin's reaction to this upset, and a bacterium called Propionibacterium acne (P. acne) which has become increasingly resistant to the antibiotics that are the conventional treatment route.

If are you given antibiotics and you take them for a prolonged period of time, there is a risk that you will, inadvertently, exacerbate the very condition you are taking them to treat because antibiotics can damage the lining of the gut. In one study, tests showed 50% of those with a severe acne problem also had higher levels of toxins in their bloodstream.

What this suggests is what the holistic skin specialists have been arguing for some time - that treating acne has to start from the inside. To replenish the microflora wiped out by the prolonged use of antibiotics, for example, take a yeast-free vitamin B complex tablet and a good probiotic supplement. It is advisable to eat bananas, Kefir or live yoghurt, which act as natural probiotics.

Teenage boys suffer spots and acne because of a surge in the male hormone, testosterone. In adults of both sexes, the same condition has been linked to the abnormally high levels of an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase. Enzymes are the catalysts that trigger the body's chemical reactions. What this one does, unhelpfully, is convert testosterone to a more potent form called dihydrotestosterone, and it is this substance that is now believed to play the key role in causing the condition.

As well as a hormonal imbalance, researchers have identified an inability among sufferers to digest saturated fats. This means that eliminating dairy products and all animal fats, especially red meats, should help manage the symptoms. Both tofu and soy are phytoestrogens - substances that can help naturally rebalance the hormones in both sexes, so eating these foods at least three times a week will also help. Sufferers should avoid yeast and white sugar.

A calcium-rich diet has been found to help reduce the severity of an acne infection and while the obvious source is milk, if the lining of the gut is damaged, sufferers are likely to be intolerant to and unable to digest lactose (the sugar in milk), making green leafy vegetables, broccoli, tofu, and shellfish better natural sources.

Vitamin A is important for maintaining all the surfaces of the body, inside and out - good dietary sources include all yellow fruits and vegetables, unpolluted fish oils, and, of course, carrots. Zinc, which helps boost the immune system and enhances the absorption of vitamin A, is lost in food processing or simply missing from non-organic food that has been harvested from nutrient-poor and heavily treated soil. Excessive sweating also depletes the body's zinc resources causing the loss of up to 3mg a day. Foods that are rich in this mineral include shellfish, pecan nuts, turkey and wheatgerm - so include plenty of these in your diet.

Drinking pure water (not from the tap), is crucial. Aim for 2 litres a day to flush out toxins, and increase your intake of dietary fibre to further help colon health by sprinkling a tablespoon of psyllium husks on your cereal or salad each day.

Keeping the skin clean is important because clogged pores can cause spots but harsh and highly alkaline soaps will remove the skins protective oil, as well as its infection-fighting acidity. The best advice is to keep your skin care routine as simplistic as possible.

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Sunday, April 8, 2007

Role of Alternative Medicine in Modern Society

Typically, alternative medicine differs from traditional medicine in that alternative medicine is older and what we might call unconventional or non-Western medicine. Alternative medicine does not follow the traditional science and research that current medicines undergo. Alternative medicine could also be termed complementary or traditional medicine or the therapies that can be integrated into current medicine. The staff of the National Library of Medicine of the United States classified alternative medicine under the category of complementary therapies in their Medical Subjects Heading Section. This was done in the year 2002. The definition provided was that alternative medicine therapeutic practices were not considered as an integral part of the traditional allopathic medicine. Therapies like acupuncture, dieting, physical therapy like exercises or yoga, etc. are termed as alternative medicine. These therapies are called complementary when they are used along with conventional treatments. If they are done in place of conventional treatments, they are known as alternative treatments.

In April 1995, the panel of National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, worked on Definition & Description, CAM Research Methodology Conference, Office of Alternative Medicine. The panel defined alternative medicine and complementary medicine as those healing resources that encompass all health systems and practices that are different from the dominant health system of a particular society or culture. Usually, therapies like ayurveda, herbal medicine, folk medicine, homeopathy, acupuncture, naturopathy, diet practices, chiropractic, music therapy, massage, pranic healing, etc. are classified as alternative or complementary medicine. People who do not find a cure, remedy or success in allopathic medicine generally try alternative medicine. Such people generally suffer from cancer, arthritis, acquired immuno deficiency syndrome (AIDS), chronic back pain, etc. Therapies included under alternative medicine would cease to be included in that category once their efficacy is proven and they are considered safe and effective. They are then considered as part of traditional medicine. An example would be chiropractors. Twenty years ago insurance would not pay for them as they were considered "alternative and ineffective." Today thousands of people have been helped by chiropractors and they are now recognized in the medical community. A similar movement is underway in the nutritional supplement and nutraceutical industry.

Over the years, more and more people have been using alternative medicine because traditional medicine is not working for them. The 2004 survey by the National Center for Complementary & Alternative Medicine of the United States revealed that approximately 36% of Americans used alternative medicine in 2002. If alternative medicine is used in conjunction with traditional allopathic medicine, an integrative doctor is a person's best option. Some traditional doctors are adamantly against or simply do not believe in complementary medicine, even though research continues to show the benefits of many compounds. Your doctor should be informed about other approaches you may be using and if they are not comfortable with that then always feel free to choose another doctor. This would enable the doctor to foresee any possible complications or a better time in which to use a complementary therapy. The concern in using alternative medicine stems from the fact that some practitioners of alternative medicine do not have an accredited medical degree and therefore do not have a valid medical license. However, in recent times, many educational institutions and universities have started offering courses in homeopathy, ayurveda, siddha, unani, acupuncture, and naturopathy. The recent growth in this industry is evident by the many people demanding different, and in some cases better, care than what they are receiving in "modern medicine." They are no longer accepting the fact that they need to suffer with pain or illness because modern pharmacy does not have a magic bullet for them.

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Friday, April 6, 2007

Natural Medicinal Plants of the Amazon Rainforest

Have you ever wondered why so many alternative and health stores tout products that purport to be the Brazilian "secret" to beauty or good health? While the exotic origin may be a top selling point (to say nothing of glamorous pictures of beautiful Brazilian women on the labels!), it is believed South America holds the key to lasting health and youth thanks to their natural resources. The Amazon rainforest, for one, yields a great bounty of plants, herbs and trees used for medicinal purposes.

You could say the Brazilian rainforest is nature's pharmacy. For centuries, natives have utilized the leaves, roots, and bark of various trees and plants to remedy a variety of conditions. Here is just a sample of what the rainforest has to offer in the way of good health:

Cocoa tree (Theobroma cacao): Of course, when we think of cocoa, we hardly associate it with good health, just good taste. While the cocoa tree is known more for the beans it yields, which in turn becomes the chocolate we enjoy, other parts the tree are equally useful. The natives of the rainforest have been known to use other parts of the tree to treat anxiety and fever, coughing and fatigue. Note, too, that chocolate in its darkest, purest form is rich in antioxidants, good for purifying the blood.

Annatto/Lipstick tree (Bixa orellana): Contrary to what you're thinking, this tree doesn't exactly yield ingredients for lipstick. It gets its name for its bright red fruit, which is somewhat shaped like lipstick. The lipstick tree is known in the rainforest especially for its topical remedies - the plant pigment Bixin, derived from the oil of the plant, is known to protect the skin from harmful UV rays. The Lipstick tree has also been used to treat bug bites and similar skin abrasions.

Papaya (Carica papaya L.): You may be somewhat familiar with this exotic fruit as a delicious snack, but did you know the roots and leaves of the papaya have been used in tribal medicine as a diuretic for years? Also, an unripened fruit contains a type of sap consisting of Papain, an enzyme believed to relieve indigestion.

The Amazon Rainforest is not only a symbol of natural beauty, but a sound source of good health. When you research what the plants, trees, and herbs of the Brazilian forests have to offer as alternative medicine, you may be amazed. However, take caution before trying anything new, consult your own physician.

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Thursday, April 5, 2007

Candida Thrush Infection In Infants

Infants and babies are particularly susceptible to thrush and yeast infections. Their fragile skin combined with the humidity of the diapers they wear make and ideal environment for candida albicans to thrive in.

Infant Yeast Infection

Baby thrush appears most often in the form of skin ailments. It can sometimes be difficult to tell the difference between infant yeast infection or diaper rash. While the latter can occupy any place on the body, the diaper rash is generally confined to the area in contact with the diaper. That does not eliminate infant yeast infection as the diaper area is often affected.

The second most common for of infant yeast infection is oral thrush in the infant's mouth. This can make feeding and breastfeeding more difficult, and while not a serious condition, should warrant a quick checkup with your doctor.

There are also instances of vaginal yeast infection in children.

What does thrush look like on infants? It is quite similar to the appearance of thrush on adults but with a much higher prevalence of widespread skin rashes, which are rarely seen in adults and older children.

Candida and Pregnancy

Although it is not uncommon to see bad yeast and bacterial infection during pregnancy, many have been led to believe that yeast infections are a sign or symptom of pregnancy. They are one of the many possible "side effects" but one cannot be used to diagnose the other.

Early pregnancy yeast infection is quite common and it is very important to enroll a doctor to find the appropriate yeast infection cures while pregnant. Any medication consumed at this time needs to be reviewed by your physician to insure they are safe for pregnancy.

Breast feeding a baby that has thrush should not be a big issue, as long as the area is properly cleaned to avoid retransmitting the yeast upon next feeding.

One of the important concerns is passing on thrush breast feeding premature infants. Since candida exists normally on the skin of almost all adult human beings, it can quite easily be passed on to the premature infant who is even more sensitive to thrush than regular weight babies and could suffer more serious consequences from the condition.

Causes of Infant Yeast Infection

Baby thrush and candida in kids is directly related to their more fragile immune system. In the case of infants, the highly humid environment caused by diaper wear as well as the thin skin makes them even more vulnerable.

Vaginal yeast infections in girls is most often caused by inadequate hygiene practices. This does not mean the child is not clean, only that they may inadvertently cause contact with dirty hands or apply soap too far in the canal while washing.

Baby Thrush Treatment
Much like yeast infection treatment during pregnancy, treating yeast infections in children should not be attempted without the input of a qualified physician. One of the home remedies is acidophilus for infant thrush although it is important that the child be deemed ready to eat dairy products.

Oral baby thrush and other conditions sometimes require the use of suspension based difflucan or fluconazole as prescribed by a physician.

Generally speaking, candida yeast is not a threat to health except in premature infants where hospitals take appropriate care in isolating the baby and preparing the mother for breast feeding.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Guggul – Herbal Treatment for Common Ailments

Guggul is nowadays gaining popularity because of its wonderful healing properties. Known as Commiphora wightii in biological terms, guggul is a bushy herb from which a black color resin comes out. This resin is the plant part that is being used for medication and is famous as Guggul. This shrub is found growing wild in Indian subcontinent and Africa where the soil is less damp.

The greatness of Guggul lies in the fact that it is time tested. Being herbal, it has no side effects. Its powerful actions s very much helpful in treating many disorders like obesity, thyroid gland abnormality, high degrees of cholesterol, decreased immunity and is an excellent pain reliever.

Guggul is a traditional ayurvedic herb that has been extensively used by ayurvedic practitioners. It is used both as a single herb medicine and in combinations. It is very commonly used in making ayurvedic pills as it has a sticky texture that helps in binding the other ingredients. Some of the most famous Guggul preparations are arogyavardhni vati, Chandraprabha vati, triphala Guggul and many more.

The active ingredient in Guggul is guggulsterone. It is the compound that is responsible for providing Guggul the diversified actions that it possesses. Besides this there are also present certain minerals and vitamins that enhances the properties of guggul.

Guggul has a great impact on our body. Action of Guggul on various systems is described below.

· Local application – Guggul is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent and is also good pain reliever. It is very effective in promoting early healing of wounds. It is also very helpful in curbing infection on wounds.

· Nervous system- Guggul is very much helpful in stimulating nervous system and also is a powerful nervine tonic. It helps in supporting our brain to perform various activities in the most optimized manner.

· Digestive system – it is one of the best digestive agent. It promotes digestive activities. It works as appetizer and stimulates the secretions of digestive enzymes. It also helps in stimulating liver for production of bile juices. It also promotes peristaltic movements. It helpful in treating piles as it is also helpful in relieving from constipation.

· Circulatory system – it improves the blood circulation and also curbs the infection in the blood. It also dilates the blood vessel to relive from high blood pressure. It is also helpful in maintaining the normal level of cholesterol in the body. It also increases the production of red blood cells and white blood cells. It is also helpful in suppressing infection in the lymphatic system. It also helps in maintaining your lipid profile in normal level.

· Respiratory system – it is also very much helpful in regularizing the respiratory tract by helping in expelling the mucus that gets accumulated in the respiratory tract.

· Urinary system – it tones up the urinary system and is very supportive in nourishing kidneys. It is also helpful in breaking renal calculi. It is diuretic in nature.

· Reproductive system – it is a good aphrodisiac agent and promotes the production of sperms in the body. It is also helpful in regularizing the menstrual cycle.

· Skin – Guggul is helpful in treating various skin related problems.

· Weight loss – Guggul is widely used in reducing the weight of an individual. It has a ketonic steroid that is very helpful in targeting the fatty acid of the body. It is also helpful in normalizing the hormonal secretion especially the thyroid gland as abnormality in the functioning of thyroid gland may be a cause of obesity.

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Monday, April 2, 2007

Essential Aromatherapy Oil

Essential oils made from herbs, leaves, flowers, and bark is both fragrant and therapeutic. Each aromatherapy oil has its own therapeutic properties so it's a good idea to learn and understand them.

Aromatherapy oil is very concentrated so you will only need a small amount in your application. After you know the values of the most popular oils you can choose your oils more effectively. And don't forget to choose the aromatherapy oil that you like too.

Basil is an aromatherapy oil that is both stimulating and uplifting. It has a fresh, sweet, spicy scent and it combines nicely with frankincense or geranium. Its properties include antiseptic, antidepressant, analgesic, antispasmodic, and uplifting. You can use it for bronchitis, colds, constipation, insect bites, migraine, nervous tension, rheumatism, or sinus congestion.

Bergamot is an aromatherapy oil that is both refreshing and uplifting. It has a sweet spicy scent and it combines nicely with chamomile, lavender, or geranium. Its properties are antiseptic, antidepressant, or antispasmodic. You can use it for abscesses, acne, chicken pox, colds, cold sores, cystitis, mouth infections, and sore throat.

Chamomile is an aromatherapy oil that is relaxing and soothing. It has a sweet fruity scent and it combines nicely with lavender, geranium, and bergamot. Its properties are antiseptic, analgesic, antibacterial, and a digestive stimulant. Use it for acne, blister, boils, colitis, depression, got, headaches, IBS, neuralgia, nervous tension, and rheumatism.

Frankincense is an aromatherapy oil that is relaxing and uplifting. It has a warm sweet scent and it combines nicely with lavender, rose, and neroli. Its properties include analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, antiseptic, expectorant. Use it for asthma, bronchitis, colds, healing wounds, nervous tension, respiratory conditions, and skin care,

Jasmine is an aromatherapy oil that is soothing and relaxing with a warm floral scent that works well with citrus oils and chamomile. Its properties are antidepressant, antispasmodic, and antiseptic. Use for anxiety, cough, headache, mental tension, or dry skin.

Lemongrass is an aromatherapy oil that is refreshing and toning with a sweet citrus scent. It combines nicely with cedarwood, lavender, and basil. Its properties are antiseptic and diuretic. Use for colic, fatigue, muscle aches and pains, and stress.

Neroli is an aromatherapy oil that is relaxing and it has a refreshing floral scent that mixes nicely with lavender, chamomile, or sandalwood. Its properties are antispasmodic, sedative, and antidepressant. Use for depression, dry or sensitive skin, IBS, headache, nervous tension, stress, and panic attacks.

Orange is an aromatherapy oil that is refreshing and relaxing with a fresh citrus scent that combines nicely with lavender and frankincense. Its properties are antidepressant, antispasmodic, detoxifying, tonic and sedative. Use for anxiety, cellulite, depression, digestive issues, dry skin, aging skin, insomnia, muscle aches and pains, and stress.

Patchouli is an aromatherapy oil that is relaxing with its sweet spicy woody scent. It combines nicely with lavender and neroli. Its properties are astringent, sedative, and anti-inflammatory. Use for anxiety, cracked ski, depression, eczema, scar tissue, and water retention.

There are many other essential oils and there is no right or wrong aromatherapy oil. What's important is that you choose the one or ones that you enjoy.