Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Used for eons, researchers study how red yeast rice prevents CVD

(Natural News) Red yeast rice is a traditional Chinese food commonly used for lowering cholesterol. It is also believed to help prevent cardiovascular disease. A review published in the Chinese Journal of Natural Medicinesconfirmed that red yeast rice and its products could be used as a healthy functional food for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases, such as atherosclerosis.

Atherosclerosis is a condition in which plaque or fatty deposits build up and clog the arteries, resulting in a thicker and narrower artery wall. Endothelial injury continues throughout the disease. Therefore, improving endothelial function is of essential in the prevention of the disease.

Researchers from the University of South ChinaThe Second Affiliated Hospital of Henan University of Science and Technology, and Beijing Anzhen Hospital of Capital Medical University reviewed existing evidence on the potential of red yeast rice and its related products in preventing and treating atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD).

Based on the evidence they have gathered, red yeast rice and its products help in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases because of their effectiveness and safety in improving lipid levels. Red yeast rice also reduces oxidative stress and inflammation while increasing nitric oxide (NO), which maintains normal vasodilatory function and helps prevent platelet aggregation and adhesion. These beneficial effects may be attributed to its compounds: polyketides, monounsaturated fatty acids, phytosterols, isoflavones, condensed tannins, coenzyme Q10, microelements, and pigments, including ankaflavin, monascin, rubropunctatin, monascorubrin, rubropunctamine, and monascorubramine.

Other health benefits of red yeast rice

In addition to improving heart health, red yeast rice offers other health benefits. These include:
  • Helping to treat metabolic syndrome: Red yeast rice consumption may help reduce several risk factors for metabolic syndrome, which is a cluster of conditions that increase the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Human and animal studies have shown that supplementing with red yeast rice can help control levels of blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol, as well as prevent excessive weight gain.
  • Reducing inflammation: Although inflammation is a normal immune response that products the body against acute infection and foreign invaders, too much and prolonged inflammation can do more harm than good. Human and animal studies have shown that supplementing with red yeast rice may help reduce inflammation and fight oxidative stress in the body, promoting better health.
  • Warding off cancer: There is also some evidence on red yeast rice having anti-cancer properties. Animal and test-tube studies have reported that red yeast rice may help fight against cancer, particularly prostate cancer, by reducing tumor growth and the spread of prostate cancer cells.
For more studies on heart-healthy foods like red yeast rice, visit FoodCures.news.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Delicious medicine: Compounds in chocolate are good for your heart

(Natural News) Chocolates are some of the world’s best-loved sweets. They’re a comfort food for some and a guilty pleasure for others. But no matter how or why you choose to eat chocolates, you should know that they’re doing you more good than just making you feel happy or satisfying your cravings. According to a 2018 study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutritioneating chocolates every day keeps your heart healthy.

Chocolates are good for your arteries
The study involved 45 male volunteers who were divided into three different groups. Each group was assigned a capsule to take with their breakfast every day for one month. Two of the three capsules contained different amounts of the two most studied compounds found in chocolate: (-)-epicatechin and procyanidins. Both compounds are flavonols or flavan-3-ols, a class of flavonoids found in many fruits and vegetables, including cocoa. (-)-Epicatechin and procyanidins are known antioxidants.

(-)-Epicatechin lowers blood pressure and reduces stiffness in arteries

When researchers from the University of Dusseldorf in Germany examined the effects of the compounds, they found that (-)-epicatechin improved endothelial function in the volunteers. It also lowered their blood pressure and reduced arterial stiffness. These results aligned with those of previous studies, particularly one made in the Netherlands which reported that men who consumed large amounts of (-)-epicatechin had a 38 percent lower risk of dying from coronary heart disease than men who consumed less (-)-epicatechin.

In contrast, the volunteers who took capsules with less (-)-epicatechin and more procyanidins did not receive the same benefits. “This demonstrates that the impact of CF (cocoa flavonols) on vascular health is linked to (?)-epicatechin and not to CF procyanidins,” wrote the researchers. (Related: Chocolate lowers blood pressure and slashes risk of heart disease.)

Procyanidins lower blood cholesterol levels

Procyanidins are not without their health benefits. Although volunteers who took large amounts of procyanidins did not experience a decrease in blood pressure or arterial stiffness, they did enjoy a reduction in blood cholesterol levels. This demonstrated that procyanidins still support heart health, albeit in an indirect way. The impact of procyanidins may not be immediately felt, but it’s still massive in the long run.
The researchers also explained that the role of procyanidins may have to do with the effect size of flavonols – that is, they protect and preserve (-)-epicatechin and other flavonols from degradation during food processing and storage, and in the gastrointestinal tract during digestion. The researchers noted that this might explain the results of other studies, which used only pure (-)-epicatechin and reported no significant effects on cardiovascular function.

Other reasons to eat chocolate

Research shows that (-)-epicatechin can also decrease blood glucose levels in diabetic patients. (-)-Epicatechin increases insulin sensitivity and decreases insulin resistance, suggesting that eating (-)-epicatechin-rich foods like chocolate can help prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes.
(-)-Epicatechin also has anticancer effects. Several studies reported that it can stop angiogenesis or the formation of new blood vessels, which is one of the ways cancer cells grow and spread to other parts of the body. High concentrations of (-)-epicatechin also prevent cancer cell proliferation in vitro.
Procyanidins, together with (-)-epicatechin and other flavonols, may have anti-inflammatory properties. One study found that these compounds can inhibit enzymesinvolved in inflammation and the formation of tumors. Procyanidins are also used in connection with health conditions such as chronic venous insufficiency, capillary fragility, diabetic retinopathy, sunburn, pancreatic insufficiency, and varicose veins. In terms of anticancer activity, procyanidins target components of intracellular signaling pathwaysimportant for regulating cell survival and death and mediating metastasis.

Friday, February 22, 2019

High-dose vitamin C can treat dengue fever and Zika virus

(Natural News) Nutritional therapies are simple low-cost methods of interrupting the transmission of various viral infections, as well as reducing one’s susceptibility to these diseases. Of particular note is the incredible healing power of vitamin C in reducing symptoms related to dengue fever, Zika virus, and similar infections.

Dengue fever can be effectively reduced with vitamin C therapy. A case study by Thomas E. Levy, M.D. showed that 10 packets of liposome-encapsulated vitamin C (1,000 mg per packet) completely cured a 15-year-old Colombian girl suffering from hemorrhagic dengue fever. Levy wrote of his experience on NaturalHealth365 and said that his patient was well after only 48 hours.

Recent studies are proving the efficacy of intravenous vitamin C therapy in effectively resolving symptomatic and documented cases of Ebola virus infection in Sierra Leone as well. Case studies published in various medical journals documented the health and status of several Ebola patients in Central Africa. Across the board, a protocol of ozone, four to eight grams of vitamin C, and a supplement containing multiple antioxidants (such as thiamine, riboflavin, selenium, N-acetyl cysteine, glutathione, and lipoic acid) dramatically reduced symptoms.

Similarly, vitamin C therapy appears to be effective in treating the Zika virus. A 2016 case report written by researchers from the University of Puerto Rico, Berdiel Clinic, and the Ponce Health Sciences University concluded that high doses of intravenous vitamin C therapy administered over three days significantly improved the condition of a patient. Symptoms associated with Zika were completely resolved without any side effects after the fourth day.

A natural antioxidant that cures and prevents

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects the body from free radical damage. While it can be used quite effectively as a therapeutic agent in many diseases and disorders, its power remains in its ability to protect the immune system by fighting off infections. Indeed, vitamin C is a clear example of “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, tomatoes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, turnips, green peppers, red peppers, and green, leafy vegetables. In a 2013 study titled “Vitamin C in Disease Prevention and Cure: An Overview,” researchers concluded that the antioxidant had profound effects on how the body responds to infections. Supplementing with vitamin C leads to a significantly reduced risk of becoming ill from various diseases and infections. Vitamin C is especially recommended for treating various inflammatory conditions.

Other documented uses for vitamin C

A number of experimental studies have observed that vitamin C therapy can be beneficial for the following conditions:
  • Heavy metal toxicity — Vitamin C therapy may help remove heavy metals from the body. Recent clinical trials based on histopathological examinations of animal models concluded that the antioxidant lessened the severity of effects of chronic lead exposure in the liver, kidneys, brain, and testes.
  • Diabetes — There is convincing clinical evidence that vitamin C can prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes. The metabolic disorder is associated with intense oxidative stress — a condition that can be treated with vitamin C.
  • Neurodegenerative disorders — A study conducted on 12 schizophrenics found that large doses of vitamin C improved the mental condition in 75 percent of the patients.
  • Cancer — High doses of vitamin C can improve the survival of patients diagnosed with terminal cancer. Studies suggest cancer patients to take around 10 g of vitamin C to reap its full benefits.
Sources include:

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Beat depression without drugs: These are the best supplements and activities that work faster and better than prescription medicine

(Natural News) If you’re depressed, you might be wary of taking antidepressants. Antidepressant use is incredibly common, with roughly one out of every 10 adults taking these drugs, but apprehension is certainly understandable given the dangerous side effects that are associated with these meds. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to suffer. Thankfully, there are several natural antidepressants and activities that you can try to help alleviate depression.
EGCG (Green tea)
You might be surprised to find that you may already have a very effective natural antidepressant in your pantry. The main active component of green tea, EGCG, boosts your resilience to stress and has been found to be just as effective as anti-anxiety drugs in combating anxiety. Studies have shown that drinking green tea every day can reduce your risk of depression by an impressive 44 percent.
Avoid taking the shortcut with supplements as these are not usually well absorbed by the body. Moreover, when you drink green tea, you’ll benefit from the synergy between the EGCG, l-theanine, and caffeine, which work together to boost attention, learning and memory. If you’re dealing with depression as well as anxiety, this is a great starting point.

Fish oil
Research has linked depression to low levels of omega-3 fatty acids, and deficiencies of one particular omega-3, DHA, have been linked to depression as well as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Another type of omega-3, EPA, can also reduce depression.
Fish oil is an excellent source of omega-3s if you don’t tend to eat a lot of oily fish, but be sure you look out for options that contain EPA as well as DHA for the maximum benefits.

Saffron
This beautiful yellow spice works just as well as Prozac does on depression by acting on serotonin metabolism, according to studies. It can also help decrease appetite. It’s not surprising, then, that saffron is one of the more common fraudulent foods given its utility in losing weight and fighting depression. Look for a standardized extract of the Crocus sativus plant from reputable sources to be sure you’re getting something effective.
Rhodiola (Arctic Root)
If you need quick depression relief, arctic root – also known as rhodiola – is a good bet. Found mostly in the colder areas of the world at higher altitudes, it is a mainstay in Chinese traditional medicine for reducing stress-induced fatigue and boosting physical stamina. It raises the activity of brain chemicals that improve mood, such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. When you have depression alongside fatigue or anxiety or it’s caused by seasonal affective disorder (SAD), you could find relief from arctic root.
Dietary changes
In many cases, the food you eat could cause or contribute to your depression. The trans fats found in fried and processed foods are particularly dangerous in this regard as researchers have found a direct correlation between the amount of trans fats consumed and depression risk. Replacing them with extra virgin oil can reduce your depression risk by as much as half.
You might also consider adding coconut oil to your diet. Its composition of medium-chain fatty acids and antioxidants has also been shown to be as effective as antidepressants at fighting depression.

Get moving
When you are depressed, it’s hard to find the motivation to do much of anything, but knowing that physical exercise is one of the best ways to improve your mental health may just be enough to get you up on your feet. Because exercise regulates the neurotransmitters that are targeted by prescription antidepressants, it can relieve depression just as well as these drugs can – and in some cases, even better! Exercise boosts the flow of blood to your brain while delivering more nutrients and oxygen.
Not only can it stimulate the formation of new brain cells and increase the connectivity between different areas of your brain, but it can even change genetic expression. Try to get your exercise outdoors so you can also benefit from the depression-alleviating effects of being with nature.
These are just a few of the ways that you can address your depression without having to put your life at risk by taking pharmaceuticals. Why not experiment with these alternatives and see what works for you?

Friday, October 5, 2018

A compound produced by bacteria in papayas shows promise as a powerful antibacterial agent

(Natural News) One of the commonly used bacterial species for industrial purposes is Bacillus licheniformis. A specific strain of this species, which was identified and isolated from papayas in Thailand, was shown to produce antimicrobial compounds. For this study, which was published in CyTA – Journal of Food, the antimicrobial compounds produced by the BFP011 strain of B. licheniformis were further characterized and evaluated for antimicrobial activity.


Bacillus sp. serve as sources for naturally-derived antimicrobial compounds, which can come in the form of either peptides or polyketides. Between these two, peptides, such as surfactins and fengycins, are more abundant than polyketides. These antimicrobial compounds are important for their role in the treatment of infections, as well as in food preservation.

In this study, crude extracts were acquired from BFP011 and subjected to further purification to determine the individual compounds present. This was done using thin-layer chromatography (TLC) and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). The purified fractions revealed the presence of macrolactins and amicoumacins, which are both non-peptides.

Antimicrobial activity of the crude extracts and the purified fractions were determined against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria that are involved in human pathogenesis or food spoilage. Results showed that the compounds were effective against a variety of bacterial species. However, Gram-negative bacteria were observed to be less susceptible to the extracts than Gram-positive bacteria. This difference in sensitivity can be attributed to lower peptidoglycan content in Gram-negative bacteria, since most antimicrobial compounds work by inhibiting peptidoglycan synthesi.


The mechanisms of action of the purified fractions against Salmonella typhi ATCC 5784 were also determined based on changes in bacterial morphology when viewed under a scanning electron microscope. S. typhi was selected for this part of the study because of its ability to cause human disease and survive in low temperature, which could lead to food contamination. Exposure of S. typhi to the purified fractions led to an inhibition of its growth, showing that macrolactins and amicoumacins are sufficient for antimicrobial activity against S. typhi. It was also observed that cells treated with the purified fractions caused deformation of the cell membrane or formation of protrusions on the surface.

Based on these results, the researchers were able to determine that B. licheniformisBFP011 produces non-peptidic antimicrobial compounds, namely macrolactins and amicoumacins. They were also able to observe that these compounds work against various bacterial species and that their mechanism of action involves the destruction of the cell membrane in a time-dependent manner.

“Notably, the scope of potential applications would not be limited to suppressing the bacterial growth in food products, but also include novel antimicrobial therapeutics, which could help to promote human health by lowering the risks associated to infection with multiresistant bacteria,” the researchers concluded.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Flu-pocalypse: The shocking failure of the flu vaccine exposed

(Natural News) Back-to-school season is here. Alongside sales, shopping and students, you may have noticed that something else is back: The flu shot. The push to get vaccinated is in full swing, whether you’re at the grocery store or simply watching the evening news. “It’s never too early to get the flu shot,” vaccine pushers are saying. And after the massive failure of the 2017 flu shot, it’s no surprise that pro-vaccine propaganda is already everywhere.

As the masses become more aware of the fraud behind the flu vaccine, Big Pharma and their puppets are going to be working overtime to sell their disinformation. In 2017, the flu vaccine was so ineffective that experts warned there would be a “Flu-pocalypse.” As a news video by The Highwire with Del Bigtree shows, media pundits around the world declared that the 2017 flu shot was only about 10 percent “effective,” yet companies and hospitals around the U.S. are forcing employees to get vaccinated.

“It’s a terrible vaccine,” Bigtree states. “But what’s outrageous is how much fear they’re creating around the idea that they may not have a vaccine,” he contends. Indeed, the fear here is actually being used to serve the vaccine industry. It’s as if these people believe the human immune system simply can’t function without a shot.
After years of toxic inoculations, that may not be so far-fetched (unfortunately).

As Bigtree contends, the media seems to use fear-mongering to push people towards vaccination, even when the vaccine clearly doesn’t work. Last year’s vaccine was a total sham — and this year’s inoculation will be no different. But everywhere you look, there’s an advertisement for the shot. Some places are even doling out flu shots for free, but it seems Big Pharma can’t even give these things away anymore.


The flu shot charade

While the mainstream media likes to claim that any increase in the case of flu is a result of people not getting vaccinated, data from the CDC shows that by the end of the flu season, approximately the same number of people were vaccinated in 2017 as years past. While the CDC writes that early season vaccination was lower, the data presented in their charts clearly shows that by the end of flu season, the numbers of vaccinated people are consistently about the same every year:
Indeed, the failure of the flu vaccine is not due to a dramatic decrease in the number of people being vaccinated, though that is what the vaccine propagandists would like for you to believe. But as Mike Adams, founder of Natural News and the pro-freedom video-sharing platform REAl.video, reports, the real science on vaccines lies in stark opposition to the pro-vaccine narrative.

Indeed, the failure of the flu vaccine is not due to a dramatic decrease in the number of people being vaccinated, though that is what the vaccine propagandists would like for you to believe. But as Mike Adams, founder of Natural News and the pro-freedom video-sharing platform REAl.video, reports, the real science on vaccines lies in stark opposition to the pro-vaccine narrative.
The Health Ranger writes:
Now a new study conducted by the Scripps Research Institute and published in the science journal PLoS blows the lid on exactly why flu shots are the greatest medical hoax in the history of science and medicine. Titled, “A structural explanation for the low effectiveness of the seasonal influenza H3N2 vaccine,” the research paper concludes that the very method of modern flu vaccine production causes viral strains to mutate to non-effective structures that do not confer the immunity being routinely claimed for flu vaccines.
Essentially, the way flu shots are made renders the flu strains useless for promoting immunity — which is why so many people still get the flu, even after vaccination. This failure rate is then used as propaganda to promote more vaccination.
But as Adams reported earlier this year, studies have now also shown that the flu vaccine doesn’t just fail — it can also cause disease to spread. Once again, mainstream media and conventional medicine have dropped the ball.


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Mediterranean-style diet found to improve quality of life for people who are depressed

(Natural News) The Mediterranean diet is known to be among the healthiest of diets with a lower incidence of chronic disease and greater longevity. It is considered a “gold standard” in healthy eating.

Traditional Mediterranean diets (MedDiet) are associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, a condition that overlaps with depression. The following study, which was published in the Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism, aimed to investigate the effects of the MedDiet on mental health and quality of life in people with depression.

A total of 163 adults aged 18-65 with self-reported depression participated in a randomized controlled trial. The trial provided nutrition education and food hampers and cooking workshops every two weeks for three months, with six months follow-up.

The control group attended social groups every two weeks. During this period, the participants completed mental health, quality of life and dietary questionnaires. Data were analyzed using linear mixed modeling and Pearson correlations.

The treatment group was found to have a higher MedDiet score; consumed more vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, and legumes; consumed a greater diversity of vegetables and fruit; and had less unhealthy snacks and red meat/chicken, in comparison to the control group at three months.

Moreover, the treatment group had reduced depression scores and higher mental health and quality of life scores.
The findings indicated that reduced depression scores correlated with increased MedDiet, consumption of nuts, legumes, and a greater diversity of fruits and vegetables.

More on the Mediterranean Diet

MedDiet is primarily plant-based, with emphasis on fresh vegetables and fruits, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes (beans and lentils). However, meat is not entirely taken out of the picture with this diet.

Fish and seafood are the primary sources of animal proteins and are recommended for consumption several times per week. Chicken is also included in this diet, eaten about once or twice per week, as well as eggs, eaten in moderate amounts (generally about seven eggs per week, including those used in baking). Meanwhile, red meat and sweet desserts are consumed in small amounts, only a few times per month. Desserts generally consist of fresh seasonal fruits.

Cheese and yogurt are great sources of probiotics and are eaten in small to moderate amounts anywhere from daily to weekly. Olive oil is the main source of fat and is used in cooking and on salads, while honey is the primary sweetener (but is used sparingly). Wine is consumed in moderation – one to two glasses per day for men and one glass for women – and usually with meals.

Among the many health benefits of MedDiet, it has also been shown to help decrease the risk of anxiety and depression. This type of diet is rich in the nutrients that are critical for the regulation of mood by providing the necessary fiber and probiotics involved in proper digestion, which in turn help reduce stress and enhance mood.

Reap the benefits of MedDiet today by considering to grow your own food, or shopping at your local farmers market to ensure fresh produce. In addition, including more fish and seafood in your daily meals while avoiding processed food is a great first step towards better mental health.

Keep abreast on other healthier food options for the mind at Veggie.news.
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