THESE ARE THE SUPPLEMENTS I MOST OFTEN RECOMMEND TO MY CLIENTS & WHY THEY'RE SO BENEFICIAL...
THE SUPPLEMENTS I MOST COMMONLY RECOMMEND
FLAXSEED (SEEDS OR OIL SUPPLEMENTS)
ACIDOPHILUS & BIFIDUS
FLAX AND FLAXSEED OIL IN YOUR EVERYDAY DIET HELPS FIGHT CANCER, AIDS DIGESTION, IS WONDERFUL FOR THE SKIN NAILS HAIR AND STUDIES SHOW A SIGNIFICANT DECREASE IN HEART DISEASE, STROKE AND CANCERS FOR PEOPLE WHO MAKE FLAX A DAILY PART OF THEIR LIFESTYLE.
FLAX IS LOADED WITH OMEGA-3's
HERE ARE SOME DIFFERENT WAYS YOU CAN BUY AND USE FLAXSEED
IN GEL SUPPLEMENT (TAKEN ORALLY-HINT KEEP THEM IN YOUR FREEZER TO KEEP FRESHER LONGER AND HAS NO TASTE OF SMELL)
FLAXSEEDS CAN BE CRUSHED AND SPRINKLED ON OATMEAL, CEREAL, SALADS, BLENDED IN SMOOTHIES, IN OR ON HOMEMADE BREADS, GIVEN TO YOUR ANIMALS IS A GREAT WAY TO HELP DOGS AND EVEN HORSES WITH JOINT PAIN OR INFLEXIBILITY. IT'S GREAT FOR ANIMAL COATS! THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS TO PUT FLAX INTO YOUR DAILY DIET. BE CREATIVE IT'S SOOOOO GOOD FOR YOU!
PRO-BIOTICS-THE OPPOSITE OF ANTI-BIOTICS (WHICH DESTROYS GOOD AND BAD INFECTION AND BACTERIA)
PRO-BIOTICS BOOSTS YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM, THIS IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN ON ANTI-BIOTICS TO HELP COUNTER THE LOSE OF GOOD ANTI-BODIES. ALSO GIVEN TO PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN ON SERIES OF CHEMO-THERAPY TO HELP BOOST THE IMMUNE SYSTEM AS WELL AS HELPING ASSISTING WITH NAUSEA. IS EXCELLENT FOR DIGESTIE HEALTH. IS A NATURAL WAY TO STOP DIARRHEA. ACIDOPHILUS IS WONDERFUL BY ITSELF BUT IS EVEN BETTER WHEN BIFIDUS OR BIFIDOM, OR BIFIDOBACTERIUM ARE SIMILAR TO ACIDOPHILUS BUT WHEN TAKEN TOGETHER ARE POWERFUL IMMUNE-BOOSTING PROBIOTICS.
THESE PROBIOTICS ARE FOUND IN YOGURTS AS THEY ARE ACTIVE CULTURES THAT KILL BAD BACTERIA AND LEAVE THE GOOD ONES. THIS IS WHAT MAKES YOGURT SO GOOD FOR YOU. ALTHOUGH YOU WOULD HAVE TO EAT TONS OF YOGURT TO GIVE YOU A BIG BOOST THAT CAN BE ACHIEVED WITH ACIDOPHILUS AND BIFIDUS SUPPLEMENTS, SUCH AS CAPSULES. THESE CAN BE FOUND AT HEALTH FOOD STORES, WALMART, WALGREENS, AND MOST GROCERY STORES.
ACIDOPHILUS AND BIFIDUS IS ALSO REALLY GOOD FOR YOUR PETS. AIDS WITH DIGESTION, REDUCES GAS, AND BOOST THEIR IMMUNE SYSTEM. YOU CAN CRUMBLE UP TABLETS IN THEIR FOOD OR OPEN A CAPSULE AND SPRINKLE THE CONTENTS INTO THEIR FOOD AS WELL. IT IS ODORLESS.
DAILY VITAMIN-C YOU CAN SAFELY TAKE 2,000-3,000 mg OF VITAMIN-C EACH DAY. OFTEN I AM ASKED, 'WON'T THAT HURT ME TO TAKE SO MUCH?" THE ANSWER IS, NO. YOU CERTAINLY WON'T. THE GREAT THING ABOUT VITAMIN C IS THAT YOUR BODY FLUSHES OUT WHAT IT DOESN'T NEED. THIS IS SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT VITAMIN C: WHEN YOU TAKE OTHER SUPPLEMENTS SUCH AS VIT D OR E, VITAMIN C ACTS A S A SORT OF CATALYST IN THE BODY. WHAT I MEAN BY THIS IS THAT VITAMIN C IS LOADED WITH CITRIC AND ABSORBIC ACID. IT DOES PRETTY MUCH WHAT IT SOUNDS LIKE. IT HELPS OTHER VITAMINS TO ABSORB INTO YOUR CELLS, YOUR BODY. SO VITAMIN C NOT ONLY FIGHTS OFF COLDS AND VIRUSES, IT ALSO ASSISTS OTHER VITAMINS TO ABSORB INTO YOUR BODY! WHATEVER YOUR BODY DOESNT' NEED YOU SIMPLY FLUSH IT OUT. ONE OF THE COLEST THINGS ABOUT VITAMIN C IS THAT IT PREVENTS BLADDER INFESTIONS. HOW DOES IT DO THIS? WELL, THAT SAME ABSORBIC, AND CIRTIC ACID THAT HELPS OTHER VITAMINS ABSORB ALSO KEEPS THE BLADDER AND KIDNEYS CLEANED OUT AND FREE OF BACTERIA. IT IS A GREAT PREVENTATIVE FOR PEOPLE WHO HAVE CHRONIC BLADDER INFECTIONS. THE HIGH LEVELS OF VITAMIN C IN CRANBERRY JUICE IS WHAT MAKES IT SO EFFECTIVE FOR BLADDER AND KIDNEY INFECTIONS.
Some call it one of the most powerful plant foods on the planet. There’s some evidence it may help reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, anddiabetes. That’s quite a tall order for a tiny seed that’s been around for centuries.
Flaxseed was cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC. In the 8th century, King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flaxseed that he passed laws requiring his subjects to consume it. Now, thirteen centuries later, some experts say we have preliminary research to back up what Charlemagne suspected.
Flaxseed is found in all kinds of today's foods from crackers to frozen waffles to oatmeal. The Flax Council estimates close to 300 new flax-based products were launched in the U.S. and Canada in 2010 alone. Not only has consumer demand for flaxseed grown, agricultural use has also increased. Flaxseed is what's used to feed all those chickens that are laying eggs with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
Although flaxseed contains all sorts of healthy components, it owes its primary healthy reputation to three of them:
Omega-3 essential fatty acids, "good" fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s.
Lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flaxseed contains 75 to 800 times more lignans than other plant foods.
Fiber. Flaxseed contains both the soluble and insoluble types.
Although Lilian Thompson, PhD, an internationally known flaxseed researcher from the University of Toronto, says she wouldn’t call any of the health benefits of flax "conclusively established," research indicates that flax may reduce risks of certain cancers as well as cardiovascular disease and lung disease.
Recent studies have suggested that flaxseed may have a protective effect against breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer. At least two of the components in flaxseed seem to contribute, says Kelley C. Fitzpatrick, director of health and nutrition with the Flax Council of Canada.
In animal studies, the plant omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, called ALA, inhibited tumor incidence and growth.
The lignans in flaxseed may provide some protection against cancers that are sensitive to hormones without interfering with the breast cancer drug tamoxifen. Thompson says some studies have suggested that exposure to lignans during adolescence helps reduce the risk of breast cancer and may also increase the survival of breast cancer patients.
Lignans may help protect against cancer by blocking enzymes that are involved in hormone metabolism and interfering with the growth and spread of tumor cells.
Some of the other components in flaxseed also have antioxidant properties, which may contribute to protection against cancer and heart disease.
Research suggests that plant omega-3s help the cardiovascular system through several different mechanisms, including anti-inflammatory action and normalizing the heartbeat. Fitzpatrick says new research also suggests significant blood pressure-lowering effects of flaxseed. Those effects may be due to both the omega-3 fatty acids as well as the amino acid groups found in flaxseed.
Several studies have suggested that diets rich in flaxseed omega-3s help prevent hardening of the arteries and keep plaque from being deposited in the arteries partly by keeping white blood cells from sticking to the blood vessels’ inner linings.
"Lignans in flaxseed have been shown to reduce atherosclerotic plaque buildup by up to 75%," Fitzpatrick says.
Because plant omega-3s may also play a role in maintaining the heart’s natural rhythm, they may be useful in treating arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat) and heart failure. More research is needed on this.
Eating flaxseed daily may also help your cholesterol levels. The level of LDL or "bad" cholesterol in the bloodstream has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. A study of menopausal women showed a decrease in LDL level after the women ate 4 tablespoons of ground flaxseed each day for a year. Fitzpatrick says the cholesterol-lowering effects of flaxseed are the result of the combined benefits of the omega-3 ALA, fiber, and lignans.
Preliminary research also suggests that daily intake of the lignans in flaxseed may modestly improve blood sugar (as measured by hemoglobin A1c blood tests in adults with type 2 diabetes).
Two components in flaxseed, ALA and lignans, may reduce the inflammation that accompanies certain illnesses (such as Parkinson's disease and asthma) by helping block the release of certain pro-inflammatory agents, Fitzpatrick says.
ALA has been shown to decrease inflammatory reactions in humans. And studies in animals have found that lignans can decrease levels of several pro-inflammatory agents.
Reducing inflammation associated with plaque buildup in the arteries may be another way flaxseed helps prevent heart attack and strokes.
One study of menopausal women, published in 2007, reported that 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed mixed into cereal, juice, or yogurt twice a day cut their hot flashes in half. The intensity of their hot flashes also dropped by 57%. The women noticed a difference after taking the daily flaxseed for just one week and achieved the maximum benefit within two weeks.
But another study reported no significant reduction in hot flashes between postmenopausal women and breast cancer patients eating a bar containing 410 milligrams of phytoestrogens from ground flaxseed and women eating a placebo bar.
The results, says Thompson, are consistent with other studies that have shown no siginifcant difference in the effect on hot flashes between flaxseed and placebo
Flaxseed Isn't a Magic Bullet
It's tempting to think of flaxseed as a super food because of its many potential health benefits. But keep in mind there is no magic food or nutrient that guarantees improved health.
What matters is consistently making great dietary choices as part of an overall healthy lifestyle.
Who Shouldn’t Use Flaxseed?
Until more is known, Thompson says, pregnant women and possibly breastfeedingmothers should not supplement their diets with ground flaxseed.
"Our own animal studies showed that flaxseed exposure during these stages may be protective against breast cancer in the offspring. But a study of another investigator showed the opposite effect," Thompson says.
Tips for Using Flaxseed
Many experts believe it's better to consume flaxseed than flax oil (which contains just part of the seed) so you get all the components. But stay tuned as researchers continue to investigate.
Thompson says, "Ground flaxseed, in general, is a great first choice, but there may be specific situations where flax oil or the lignans (taken in amounts naturally found in flaxseed) might be as good."
How much flaxseed do you need? The optimum dose to obtain health benefits is not yet known. But 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed a day is currently the suggested dose, according to the Flax Council of Canada.
Here are more tips for using, buying, and storing flaxseed:
Buy it ground or grind it yourself. Flaxseed, when eaten whole, is more likely to pass through the intestinal tract undigested, which means your body doesn't get all the healthful components. If you want to grind flaxseed yourself, those little electric coffee grinders seem to work best.
Milled = ground = flax meal. Don’t be confused by the different product names for ground flaxseed. Milled or ground flaxseed is the same thing as flax meal.
Buy either brown or golden flaxseed. Golden flaxseed is easier on the eyes, but brown flaxseed is easier to find in most supermarkets. There is very little difference nutritionally between the two, so the choice is up to you.
Find it in stores or on the Internet. Many supermarket chains now carry ground flaxseed (or flax meal). It’s usually in the flour or "grain" aisle or the whole-grain cereal section and is often sold in 1-pound bags. You can also find it in health food stores or order it on various web sites.
Check the product label. When buying products containing flaxseed, check the label to make sure ground flaxseed, not whole flaxseed, was added. Flaxseed is a featured ingredient in cereals, pasta, whole grain breads and crackers, energy bars, meatless meal products, and snack foods.
Add flaxseed to a food you habitually eat. Every time you have a certain food, like oatmeal, smoothies, soup, or yogurt, stir in a couple tablespoons of ground flaxseed. Soon it will be a habit and you won’t have to think about it, you’ll just do it.
Hide flaxseed in dark, moist dishes. The dishes that hide flaxseed the best are dark sauces or meat mixtures. No one tends to notice flaxseed when it's stirred into enchilada casserole, chicken parmesan, chili, beef stew, meatloaf, or meatballs. For a 4-serving casserole, you can usually get away with adding 2 to 4 tablespoons of ground flaxseed. For a dish serving 6 to 8, use 4 to 8 tablespoons.
Use it in baking. Substitute ground flaxseed for part of the flour in recipes for quick breads, muffins, rolls, bread, bagels, pancakes, and waffles. Try replacing 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the flour with ground flaxseed if the recipe calls for 2 or more cups of flour.
Keep it in the freezer. The best place to store ground flaxseed is the freezer. Freeze pre-ground flaxseed in the bag you bought it in or in a plastic sealable bag if you ground it yourself. The freezer will keep the ground flax from oxidizing and losing its nutritional potency..com
Whole flaxseed keeps longer. The outside shell in whole flaxseed appears to keep the fatty acids inside well protected. It’s a good idea to keep your whole flaxseed in a dark, cool place until you grind it. But as long as it is dry and of good quality, whole flaxseed can be stored at room temperature for up to a year.
Probiotics is a general term for living microorganisms -- usually known as "friendly" bacteria, or yeast -- that have health benefits in the body. Many are similar to organisms that are naturally found in the body, especially in the digestive tract. Probiotics have become popular supplements and food additives, most often used to promote healthy digestion.
Why do people take probiotics?
Probiotics work by balancing the levels of microorganisms in the intestines. They drive down the numbers of harmful bacteria. They also seem to boost the body's immune system.
Although research is ongoing, there's good evidence that some probiotics may be helpful in treating irritable bowel syndrome, some types of diarrhea, colitis (particularly ulcerative colitis and including the difficult to treat "pouchitis" found in ulcerative colitis), certain types of stomach ulcers (those caused by H. pylori), acne, and eczema in children. They may also be used with antibiotics to help prevent diarrhea that may come with taking antibiotics.
In addition, researchers are studying probiotics to determine if they may help infections (including urinary tract, vaginal, GI, sinus, and respiratory), dental disease, allergies, and diseases of the liver and pancreas. They are also testing probiotics to see if they can help prevent the recurrence of colon and bladder cancer. However, more research is needed to determine if probiotics are safe and effective for these conditions.
Remember that there are many types of probiotics. They include lactobacilli (likeLactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus GG), bifidobacteria (like Bifidobacterium bifidus) and some yeasts (like Saccharomyces boulardii.) Different probiotics have different effects. So while one may help treat diarrhea or a vaginal infection, another may have no effect. Before you start taking a probiotic supplement, talk to your doctor. You need to make sure that you get the treatment most likely to help.
Probiotics are different from prebiotics. Prebiotics are non-digestible ingredients in foods that are used to spur the growth of probiotic bacteria in the body by providing a suitable environment in which the probiotics themselves can flourish. Synbiotics are combinations of prebiotics with probiotics.
How many doses of probiotics should you take?
Because there are so many different probiotic organisms, there is no set dosage. Ask your doctor for advice. Some probiotics are dosed by the number of live organisms they contain. For instance, a typical dosage of Lactobacillus acidophilus ranges between 1 billion to 10 billion live organisms split into three or four doses. Dosage may also be indicated as colony forming units (CFU).
Can you get probiotics naturally from foods?
Probiotics occur naturally in some foods and are added to others. Examples are yogurt, milk, sauerkraut, tempeh, miso, soy drinks, and some other beverages.
What are the risks of ingesting probiotics?
Side effects. Probiotics seem to have few side effects. Some may cause intestinal gas and bloating. However, this is likely to get better over time. If your probiotics are causing these side effects, try decreasing the dose or using it every other day.
Interactions. If you take any medicines regularly, talk to your doctor before you start using probiotics. They could interact with medicines such as antibiotics or immunosuppressive drugs.
Risks. If you have intestinal disease or damage, HIV, cancer, a weakened immune system, or excessive bacteria in your intestines, don't use probiotics without checking first with your doctor.
Lactobacillus and bifidobacteria are two of the most common types of probiotics on the market. See the links below for in-depth information on these two types.
Alternative Treatments for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Alternative treatments such as acupuncture, dietary supplements, and herbs don't always get the official scientific nod, but some patients turn to them for help with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Acupuncture for IBS
Acupuncture is a popular alternative therapy for IBS and other conditions. It's proven effective for treating chronic pain, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). However, the studies are mixed on whether the treatments really work for IBS.
Some studies show that acupuncture helps with abdominal pain and other IBS symptoms. Other studies show that it doesn't help.
Philip Schoenfeld, MD, MSEd, MSc, investigated various IBS treatments when he co-authored the treatment guidelines published by the American College of Gastroenterology. He says the hard data showing acupuncture's effectiveness isn't very good. Yet "that does not mean that acupuncture might not be helpful," he says. Many individuals say they feel better after acupuncture. Out of all alternative options, he suspects that acupuncture may help some people with IBS.
It is not entirely clear how this traditional Chinese treatment works. Some researchers believe the acupuncture needles stimulate electromagnetic signals in the body. These signals are thought to either encourage the release of pain-killing chemicals, or nudge the body's natural healing systems into action.
Acupuncture is ideally used with other treatments, says Jeanine Blackman, MD, PhD, medical director of the University of Maryland Center for Integrative Medicine. She says even in China, the therapy is never used on its own. Talk with your doctor if you are considering acupuncture.
Oils and Supplements for IBS
To help her IBS patients, Blackman recommends a combination of treatments, including changes in diet, stress reduction, and supplements such as evening primrose oil, borage oil, fish oil, or probiotics. She says the oil supplements help calm down the gut, and probiotics restore the good balance of bacteria in the digestive system.
Evening primrose oil comes from the seed of a small yellow wildflower and borage oil comes from the seed of a common weed. Both supplements are similar in nature. Some proponents say evening primrose oil can help improve IBS symptoms, especially in women who experience a worsening of pain, discomfort, and bloating during their menstrual period. But claims about evening primrose oil are largely unproven, reports the University of California at Berkeley Wellness Guide to Dietary Supplements. Plus, side effects reportedly include stomach upset, headaches, and rashes.
Fish oil supplements have been examined along with fish for a number of benefits, including preventing heart disease and easing autoimmune disorders. There doesn't appear to be any scientific proof, however, that they work for IBS.
Herbs for IBS
Herbs are also popular options for people with IBS. Peppermint is used to calm muscles in the colon, which may cause some of the diarrhea and abdominal discomfort suffered by people with IBS. Studies have been mixed with this herb. The Mayo Clinic advises anyone who'd like to try it to get the enteric-coated capsules, and to be aware that it may make heartburn worse.
Registered herbalists never use peppermint on its own, nor do they recommend it for an extended period of time, says Jonathan Gilbert, who has a diploma in herbology and acupuncture from the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM). He is a senior consultant for traditional oriental medicine at the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland.
For people who are interested in true herbal therapy, Gilbert recommends a visit to an herbalist who has comprehensive training and is certified by the NCCAOM.
"In order to get a solution to a complex disorder, you need a complex formula, and in order to get that, you need to see someone who can actually prepare it," says Gilbert, noting he could combine up to 30 to 40 herbs for one formula. He says classic Chinese medicine has thousands of preset formulas for different ailments.
A lot of these formulas can't be bought on store shelves, adds Gilbert.
If you are interested in herbal therapy, dietary supplements, acupuncture, or any other treatment for your IBS, make sure you talk with your doctor. Herbs may interact with other medications you may be taking. Dietary supplements may become toxic if not used properly. Your doctor can also advise you on medicines for IBS with constipation and IBS with diarrhea.
Probiotics for IBS
On the other hand, there's some evidence that taking probiotics help IBS sufferers. Probiotics are bacteria that naturally live in the gut. Some people believe that several intestinal disorders may arise when there isn't enough good bacteria in the gut.
One study found that probiotic treatment significantly improved IBS symptoms and quality of life. In the study, researchers primarily used the bacteria Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacteria infantis. People with IBS reported fewer symptoms and, in general, a higher quality of life after taking the probiotics for four weeks.
Just as significant, the probiotic therapy did not appear to cause side effects, according to the study's author, Stephen M. Faber, MD, from Albemarle Gastroenterology Associates, PC, in Elizabeth City, North Carolina.
"These are organisms that are supposed to be in the gut. The body knows how to control them," Farber told WebMD.
Therapy and Hypnosis for IBS
Researchers have found that focusing the mind with hypnotherapy can improve the emotional and physical symptoms in those with IBS.
In one study, 20 men and 55 women received between five and seven half-hour hypnotherapy sessions over a three-month period. Afterwards, patients reported a 30% improvement in emotional quality of life and a 16% increase in overall physical health.
Two other studies conducted by one researcher included 135 people with IBS. The study participants who received 12 weekly one-hour hypnotherapy sessions focusing on their troubles with IBS showed a 52% improvement in their physical symptoms. Improvements were also maintained when researchers checked in with participants six months after the end of the study.
Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) trains people to identify and change inaccurate perceptions they may have of themselves and the world around them. It's also been used to help IBS patients ease symptoms and improve quality of life.
Researchers gave a group of IBS patients up to 10 weekly sessions of CBT in one study. The sessions covered information on IBS, muscle relaxation training, development of a flexible set of problem-solving skills related to IBS, and ways to curb worries about the illness. Results showed that 60% to 75% of participants had improvement in their symptoms.