Yes I know this is an 11th hour November newsletter but I do have a good excuse, having been preoccupied with a very special occassion, namely the marriage of our second son to the gorgeous girl of his dreams! And what an amazing fairy-tale wedding it was!
For Ken and me it was especially delightful to see our two grandchildren play out their roles as flower girl and page boy and I just had to show you how cute they looked. Meet our stars, Emily (4) and Matt (2).
With Grandma’s brag done and dusted let's move on shall we? (Aren't you lucky I haven’t received any other wedding pics yet!)
Fibrocystic Breast Condition
I discussed the symptoms that go with fibrocystic breast condition in my October newsletter and promised to tell you about some natural ways that may help this condition. Apart from diet-tweaking there are two possible, or should I say very likely deficiencies, worth considering.
In probably most cases this condition is a sign of progesterone deficiency or estrogen dominance. A transdermal natural progesterone cream (See AIM Renewed Balance or Bioconcepts High Care Body Cream on the product list) applied daily, continuously for 4-6 months, is usually enough to settle the inflammation when coupled with dietary changes. Once the cysts have cleared up you can reduce the progesterone dose to find the smallest dose that is still effective each month.
There is also much evidence to suggest that hypothyroidism and/or iodine deficiencies may contribute to the development of fibrocystic breast tissue. Iodine deficiency has also been associated with ovarian cysts, breast cancer, thyroid goitre and hypothyroidism. Recent work in the field of iodine deficiency has shown that replacement therapy decreases the risk of breast cancer and promotes the reversal of fibrocystic breast disorder. Iodine decreases the ability of estrogen to adhere to estrogen receptors in the breast. This ties into the compelling evidence that iodine deficiency is a cause of breast cancer.
Animal studies have shown that fibrocystic breast disorder can actually be induced by depriving breast tissue of iodine and these changes can be reversed by iodine doses equivalent to 5,000 mcg per day in humans. So it is possible that women with fibrocystic breast "changes", as I like to call them, can obtain substantial relief from oral administration of iodine at doses of 3,000-6,000 mcg daily (See Bioconcepts Ocean Power/Lugol's Solution on the product list).
Bio-identical hormone therapy expert, Dr Michael Platt, actually recommends a combination of both progesterone and iodine: "Breast tissue absorbs more iodine than any other area of the body, including the thyroid. A combination of iodine mixed into progesterone cream can actually cause apoptosis of breast cancer cells, and should go a long way to shrinking cysts in the breast when applied directly to breast tissue."
Of course diet is also important together with liver detoxification. Reduce gluten, dairy and soy, eat lots of iodine-rich foods such as sea vegetables (especially kelp), fish and eggs and lots of cruciferous vegetables to aid liver detoxification of estrogens. Certain foods may worsen breast tenderness such as caffeine, chocolate and high fat foods.
Constipation in babies
It is not uncommon for very young babies, even if breast-fed, to become constipated and then comes the dilemma of what measures one can take that are safe for such a teeny one who is clearly in alot of discomfort. Remedies that can help are: a little olive/coconut oil in baby's bottle, a good probiotic designed for babies or dissolve tissue salts 8 and 9 in the bottle.
And then there is reflexology. I know very little about reflexology but I do know that babies respond very well to it. Results are often experienced immediately and can soothe a cranky baby by helping to relieve tummy pains or constipation. Mom's would do well to learn to do the baby foot rub shown in this youtube video clip. It can work immediately or take a few hours. Repeat a few times a day. If your baby cries this does not necessarily mean you are pushing too hard but may rather be affirmation that the bowel is really clogged, so do persist.
Earache in children
Ear infections and glue ear are the most common reasons why children are prescribed antibiotics in their first years of life. The mouth, nose, throat, Eustachian tubes and middle ear of a newborn baby are sterile but fairly soon after birth these areas get populated by various microbes, coming from the environment and anyone who is in contact with the child. To clean and protect themselves, the Eustachian tubes will start producing additional mucous but if this is accompanied by swelling which blocks the entrance into the tubes, the mucous is unable to drain out. Fairly quickly the middle ear fills up with mucous. This situation results in "glue ear" which sadly can impair the child's hearing and general learning abilities may suffer.
The mucous-filled middle ear becomes a breeding ground for pathogens, resulting in infection with accompanying symptoms of pain and fever, for which antibiotics are usually prescribed. Although antibiotics would clear away the infectious agent, they won't clear up the glue ear. In fact in the long run they make the situation worse by altering the bacterial flora in the nose and throat even further. So, with the middle ear still filled with mucous, predictably the ear infection happens again and fairly soon, until the real problem of abnormal flora that has developed in the child's nose and throat is resolved. It is possible to normalise this flora so that ear infections should not recur:
Firstly dietary changes are needed. A common contributing factor to ear infections are food allergies, particularly allergy to cow’s milk – remove this from the diet completely and with immediate effect. Also remove sugar and processed carbohydrates, particularly those containing gluten. It is amazing how quickly glue ear can resolve when these foods are taken out of the diet.
Secondly, introduce a strong therapeutic probiotic to the child's regimen. The beneficial bacteria will help to clear out pathogenic flora and re-establish normal healthy flora in the mouth, nose and throat, which would keep the child clear from ear infections. Apart from adding a probiotic to the food, you can also open a capsule of probiotic and put the powder on the child's tongue last thing before bed, after your little one has cleaned his teeth and is not going to eat or drink any more. This way the probiotic bacteria will have a chance to work on the flora of the mouth and throat all night.
With the use of diet and probiotics you can improve the state of the gut flora and the immune system in your child's body. The gut will heal and a lot of food allergies will disappear. However, it takes time to change the child's diet and to establish normal bacterial flora in the throat. So what do we do as an immediate response to an ear infection? As mentioned before, this is when antibiotics are usually prescribed but apart from destroying the beneficial bacteria, antibiotics are usually given to small children in a syrup, loaded with sugars and starches, foods that pathogenic microbes thrive on, so you can expect a recurrence of ear infection pretty soon. There have been comparison studies done, where one group of children with an ear infection was treated with antibiotics and another group received no treatment and there was no difference in the outcome after an antibiotic treatment or doing nothing at all. So if you leave a child with an ear infection without any treatment, he or she will recover just as well. However, who can watch a child in pain and do nothing?
Thankfully there is a very effective home remedy which every parent needs to know about and I so wish I'd known this when my boys were little: Chop up a clove of garlic and add it to warmed olive oil. When cooled to body temperature, strain. Apply drops of this garlic oil to the ear every few hours. Relief will come instantaneously or at least within a couple of hours.
Revisiting painful knuckles
Since I wrote about boron for Bouchard's and Heberden's nodes in the September newsletter, I have heard numerous knuckle stories and seen just as many pictures of knobby knuckles, all of which has confirmed that no two people are the same. There are those who have badly deformed knuckles and no pain and others who may or may not have visibly large knobs on their knuckles but experience severe sharp needle pain when they apply pressure to or knock their knuckles against a hard object. Some have this pain constantly while others get sporadic attacks of joint pain and swelling identical to gout. The latter is often termed pseudogout or acute calcium pyrophosphate (CPP) crystal arthritis.
Whatever the fancy name given we are looking at calcium crystals that have deposited in the tissues surrounding the joints. The boron from calcium fructoborate that I wrote about will help long term to metabolise this calcium however many of you are looking for more immediate pain relief and who can blame you.
To find the answer we need to ask why and how this calcium deposition occurred in the first place. Some experts argue that magnesium is needed more than calcium for the mineralisation of bone. We use magnesium for hundreds of different bodily functions and as such it is easy to become deficient. When calcium is present without equal or even greater amounts of magnesium, the body switches on the parathyroid hormone to start removing calcium from the bones, which it then deposits in soft tissue around the joints or in cartilage. Yes you can say that again…Ouch! A magnesium supplement such as magnesium glycinate, perhaps with vitamin B6 for better absorption, will help to balance calcium and of course it’s also an anti-inflammatory. Since Epsom salts is magnesium sulphate you may get rapid relief from painful fingers by soaking your hands for 15 minutes in a hot concentrated solution of Epsom salts or rubbing magnesium oil into your knuckles. (Magnesium oil is great for muscle/joint pain anywhere in the body).
Another option worth trying is apple cider vinegar. Drink at least 1 tablespoon diluted in a glass of water daily. What can give you immediate relief if you can find it is a medicinal herb called chanca piedra (aka Stone-breaker - great for dissolving kidney stones too). It not only reduces inflammation and treats pain but also helps to breakdown the build up of calcium. Also continue long term, 3-6 months, with your boron supplement that will direct calcium intake into the bones where it belongs.
Pending price increases and final orders for 2014
In the attached product list you may find a few small price increases of supplements I source from other suppliers but nothing untoward. As regards the products I import from Canada, unfortunately I cannot continue to absorb the increases in shipping costs and the ever increasing exchange rate and I have no choice but to introduce a small price increase on some of these products effective 1 January 2015. I'm talking about the first group in the listing under See Yourself Well, so if you're running out of these may I suggest you order this year at the old prices. I'll be away for the first week of December but available to process your orders 10 December until Christmas. Then it's family time until 12 January so please be sure you're not going to run out of your favourite supplements before then.
Healthy Christmas Present Suggestions
For the smoker - a bottle of Vice-Breaker!
For the whole family - A rebounder!
Cheers to 2014
The year has flown by and I can’t believe Christmas is around the corner. For my family it’s been a happy year anticipating the wedding but we have also lost some very dear friends along the way who have succumbed to their illnesses. As we enter the holiday season let us remember that not everyone will be surrounded by large, wonderful families. Some are overcome with great sadness remembering loved ones who are no longer around. Many people have no one to spend these times with and are besieged by loneliness. We all need caring, loving thoughts - no one is immune. This holiday season let’s give more than a momentary thought to all those who have family problems, health struggles, job issues, worries of any kind and just need to know someone cares.
In conclusion I’d like to thank you for your wonderful support during this past year. I appreciate YOU more than you’ll ever know. Have a blessed festive season and although no one will be watching you (particularly round the chocolate box), try to keep it as healthy as you can whilst still having fun, remembering that laughter is still the best medicine.
Till we chat again in 2015 may God bless you abundantly.
Nutritional Therapist (BSc (Hons) HDE, Dip Clin Nutr) The Orchards Nutrition Centre - Somerset East Tel: 042 243 0339 Cell: 084 531 0786 Email: email@example.com
The information in this newsletter is for educational purposes only and not to be construed as medical advice. It is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or in any way replace qualified medical supervision. For any medical conditions, consult with your healthcare provider before using any products. Abundant health to you all.