dangers of titanium dioxide

French Ban Titanium Dioxide Effective January 1, 2020

This is fascinating on many levels. 

The French ban on titanium dioxide took effect on January 1, 2020.

Are you asking yourself, why would the French be concerned enough about titanium dioxide to ban it in food?

Should I be concerned about the vitamins and supplements I take that have titanium dioxide under the “other” ingredients?  Yes!

Titanium dioxide is used as a filler also known as excipient in many brands of dietary supplements in the U.S. and manufacturers are not required to tell you how much of it is in the product.  The only requirement is to list it on the label under “Other Ingredients”.

A 2017 French scientific study highlighted the potential carcinogen risks of nano-particles of Ti02, a type of titanium dioxide. France’s National Assembly passed an amendment banning the use and importation of any food product containing titanium dioxide (TiO2) as a food additive beginning January 1, 2020.

Critics say titanium dioxide serves no nutritional purpose, does not increase products’ shelf life, and may pose a risk to humans since the nano-particles may be able to pass through protective walls of organs such as the liver, lungs or intestines.

France ordered an inquiry last year after scientists reported that titanium dioxide caused precancerous lesions in 40 per cent of rats given the chemical in their drinking water.

It also sped up the development of these growths, which are not malignant but can develop into more dangerous cancers, according to France’s INRA agricultural research institute, which took part in the study.

Researchers from France and Luxembourg said that titanium dioxide was approved in the US in 1966.

Pacific Herbs never uses fillers for excipients in any of their natural herbal products. We pride ourselves on purity and potency.  We would never dilute our 100% botanical ingredients with anything, especially something known to be toxic.

Rou Cong Rong,Cistanche

Libido Herb Better Than Horny Goat Weed Found in Desert

When you’ve only got a desert to work with, how does one become a farmer?

How about grow a highly sought after Chinese herb for fertility treatments that happens to love the desert. That’s exactly what one desert nomad started doing in China’s unforgiving deserts of Inner Mongolia in 2003. The herb he now grows brings in more income than the family ever made before.

The herb is cistanche, a native desert plant that’s always been prized  in the Chinese herb world. Cistanche  (aka – Rou Cong Rong) is used in Chinese medicine to replenish the blood and kidney jing also translated as essence or heredity. Cistanche was first mentioned in the Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing a Chinese book on agriculture and medicinal plants written circa 100 AD.  It is commonly used today for impotence and erectile dysfunction and you can find it in Pacific Herbs, Libido Booster for Him.

It’s not Viagra, but the actions from the volatile oils and non-volatile phenylethanoid glycosides (PhGs), oligosaccharides and polysaccharides have proven fertility treatment benefits for premature ejaculation, frequent urination, weakness of tendons, constipation in old age, impotence and even high blood pressure.  Libido Booster for Him has a combination of Chinese herbs used as a fertility treatment to increase sex drive and desire which includes cistanche.

What I find fascinating about this plant is that cistanche cannot grow alone. It is a parasitic type of shrub which only grows on the roots of others.  Saxaul is one such partner and is special in its own right for impeding erosion. You may have heard about the dust storms near Beijing before and during the Olympic games. This is a continual problem for the residents  and certainly for any athletes competing outdoors. China has spent millions on planting trees on the outskirts of Beijing to prevent the desert form encroaching into the metropolitan areas and to reduce the effects of the dust storms. (Approximately 18% of China’s land is desert).  A plant like saxaul has huge value in simply holding the sand in place.

Now that thousands of acres of saxaul and cistanche are growing, it’s not only holding back the encroaching desert it also had the ability to earn families a substantial living. The international market for kidney tonics has been growing and cistanche is known as the “ginseng of the desert”.  Along with the above mentioned actions this Chinese herb is a popular immunity booster, memory enhancer  and known for delaying aging and treating infertility. Overall it’s a kidney tonic, similar to ginseng in that regard.

You probably never thought to look for the fountain of youth in a desert, but this plant is truly just that. Growing in one of the harshest environments on earth, cistanche overcomes the odds with enduring persistence and provides us with compounds which Chinese medicine has used for centuries to restore and replenish kidney essence. This incredible plant provides us energy,  it helps the ecology and the local economy.

Who would of thought you would find something so “green“ in the middle of a desert.

Corona Virus

Corona Virus and Chinese Herbal Medicine Recommendations

Jan. 29, 2020

What we know is that a 100 plus strong team of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) experts were dispatched to Wuhan, China, on January 25, 2020 to examine patients in hospitals with the Corona virus. The attached information has been presented by a number of TCM Doctors and is comprehensive listing of TCM diagnostics and Chinese herbal formulas suggested for treatment of the Corona virus, which presents much like pneumonia in Western medicine. As we know, SARS was treated successfully with Chinese herbal medicine when the outbreak occurred in China in 2002.

The attached information is for practitioners of Chinese herbal medicine. If you are in need of any of these formulas please contact us at Info@PacHerbs.com.

If you are not a practitioner and need any of these herbal formulas please contact us and we can help you find a Licensed Acupuncturist who has herbal training in your area for guidance.

Thank you to the doctors in China who have shared this information. The goal here is to help spread the knowledge of Chinese herbal formulas that are best suited to combat this virus.

Links below

Treating Corona with Chinese herbal Medicine

Sars-Corona-Virus

 

Update: Jan. 30, 2020  We now know for certain the incubation time is 14 days without any symptoms. So no one knows if they are infected or infecting others. Please be cautious. Hand washing with soap and hot water is an obvious precaution. Face masks and goggles are being worn throughout China prevent the spread. 

Sars-Severe Adult Respiratory Syndrome: Formulas for Prevention and Treatment (For TCM Herbalists)

 

Shared by Pacific Herbs

 

 

Prevention of SARS (or Corona to take prior to ANY type of exposure)

 

1.         5 q       Jin  Yin Hua               Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

5 q       Lian Qiao                    Forsythiae Suspensae, Fructus

3 q       Chan Tui                     Cicadae Periostracum

3 q       Bai Jiang Can              Bombyx Batryticatus

2 q       Bo He                          Mentae Haplocalycis, Herba

2 q       Sheng Gan Cao           Glycyrrhizai Uralensis, Radix  (raw)

Make tea and drink throughout the day for 7-10 days

 

2.         4 q       Cang Zhu                    Atractylodis, Rhizoma

5 q       Bai Zhu                       Atractylodis Macrocephalae, Rhizoma

5 q       Huang Qi                    Astragali Membranacei, Radix

3 q       Fang Feng                   Ledabouriellae Divaricatae, Radix

4 q       Huo Xiang                  Agastaches seu Pogostemi, Herba

5 q       Bei Sha Shen               Adonophorae seu Glehniae, Radix

6 q       Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

4 q       Guan Zhong                Guanzhong, Rhizoma

Make tea and drink twice a day for 7-10 days

 

3.         2 q       Guan Zhong                Guanzhong, Rhizoma

3 q       Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

3 q       Da Qing Ye                 Daqingye, Folium

3 q       Zi Su Ye                      Perillae Frutescentis, Folium

3 q       Ge Gen                        Radix Puerariae

3 q       Huo Xiang                  Agastaches seu Pogostemi, Herba

3 q       Cang Zhu                    Atractylodis, Rhizoma

5 q       Tai Zi Shen                 Pseudostellariae Heterophyllae, Radix

3 q       Pei Lan                        Eupatorii Fortunei, Herba

Make tea and drink twice a day for 7-10 days

 

 

Other preventative measures:

*Chew on Xi Yang Shen (Panacis Quinquefolii, Radix) or make tea to drink throughout the day.

*Xi Yang Shen 1-2 q and Jin Yin Hua 5 q tea to drink once a day.

*Keep warm, don’t catch cold

*Sleep well

*Moderate stress factors

*Drink more water

*Take vitamin C

*avoid constipation

 

Possible exposure to SARS or CORONA (To take if any kind of exposure has occurred)

Soup:

Cong Bai – Green Onion

Fresh Chinese Daikon

½ of a tangerine peel

Sheng Jiang – Ginger – 3 slices

Cilantro bunch, maybe 10 sprigs

Make a soup and drink often

 

Chinese herbal Formulas:

1.

5 q       Huang Qi                    Astragali Membranacei, Radix

5          Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

3          Chai Hu                       Bupleuri, Radix

3          Huang Qin                  Scutellariae Baicalensis, Radix

5          Ban Lan Gen               Isatidis seu Baphicacanthi, Radix

5          Guan Zhong                Guanzhong, Rhizoma

3          Cang Zhu                    Atractylodis, Rhizoma

5          Yi Yi Ren                    Coicis Lachryma-jobi, Semen

3          Huo Xiang                  Agastaches seu Pogostemi, Herba

3          Fang Feng                   Ledabouriellae Divaricatae, Radix

1.5       Sheng Gan Cao           Glycyrrhizai Uralensis, Radix (raw)

 

For prevention and treatment

1.         Tonifies Qi, transforms damp, clears heat and toxins

3          Huang Qi                    Astragali Membranacei, Radix

5          Bai Jiang Cao              Bombyx Batrytiatus

5          Yi Yi Ren                    Coicis Lachryma – Jobi, Semen

2          Jie Geng                      Platycodi Grandiflori, Radix

1          Sheng Gan Cao           Glycyrrhizai Uralensis, Radix (raw)

 

2.         *Clears heat, reduces toxins, drains dampness and dirty Qi, aromatically opens orifices

5          Yu Xing Cao               Houttuyniae Cordatae, Herba cum Radice

2          Ye Ju Hua                   Chrysanthemi Indici, Flos

5          Yin Chen Hao             Artemisiae Yinchenhao, Herba

3          Pei Lan                        Eupatori Fortunei, Herba

1          Cao Guo                      Amomi Tsao-Ko, Fructus

 

3.         Clears heat, reduces toxins, dispels Wind, pushes evil out

5          Pu Gong Ying             Taraxaci Mongolici cum Radice, Herba

*2        Jin Lian Hua –              like Chuan Xin Lian

3          Da Qing Ye                 Daqingye, Folium

3          Ge Gen                        Radix Puerariae

2          Zi Su Ye                      Perillae Frutescentis, Fructus

 

4.         Clears heat, releases exterior, dispels wind, takes out external evil

5          Lu Gen                        Phragmitis Communis, Rhizoma

3          Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

3          Lian Qiao                    Forsythiae Suspensae, Fructus

2          Bo He                          Menthae Haplocalycis, Herba

1.5       Sheng Gan Cao           Glycyrrhizai Uralensis, Radix (raw)

 

5.         Tonifies Spleen, Benefits Qi, Dissolves Dampness, Reduces toxins

3          Sheng Huang Qi         Astragali Membranacei, Radix (raw)

2          Bai Zhu                       Atractylodis Macrocephalae, Rhizoma

3          Fang Feng                   Ledabouriellae Divaricatae, Radix

2          Cang Zhu                    Atractylodis, Rhizoma

3          Huo Xiang                  Agastaches seu Pogostemi, Herba

3          Bei Sha Shen               Adenophorae seu Glehniae, Radix

3          Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

2          Guan Zhong                Guanzhong, Rhizoma

 

6.         Benefits Qi, Expels external evil, reduces toxins, dispels dampness

5          Tai Zi Shen                 Pseudostellariae Heterophyllae, Radix

2          Guan Zhong                Guanzhong, Rhizoma

3          Jin Yin Hua                 Lonicerae Japonicae, Flos

3          Lian Qiao                    Forsythiae Suspensae, Fructus

3          Da Qing Ye                 Daqingye, Folium

2          Zi Su Ye                      Perillae Frutescentis, Fructus

3          Ge Gen                        Radix Puerariae

3          Huo Xiang                  Agastaches seu Pogostemi, Herba

2          Cang Zhu                    Atractylodis, Rhizoma

3          Pei Lan                        Eupatori Fortunei, Herba

 

The three Stages of SARS and the recovery period  – (note, most formulas clear heat, toxins and damp)

1.         Early stage –  starts as a Wind Heat or Wind Cold cough with Shortness of breath

A.        Heat and Toxins attack the Lung

B.        Damp heat obstruction occurs

C.        There is external cold and internal heat combined with Dampness

TX Principal:  Clear heat, open the Lungs, release exterior, open the meridians

Formulas:   Based on Yin Qiao San combined with Ma Xing Shi Gan Tang modified with herbs as appropriate for patient’s condition.

*If there is more Damp Heat blockage give San Ren Tang – (3 seeds Xing Ren, Bai Dou Kou, Yi Yi Ren to drain damp) or Huo Xiang Huo Po Tang (Huo Xiang, Hou Po, Ban Xia, Fu Ling to dissolve phlegm)

*If there is more external cold and interior heat with damp use Ma Xing Shi Gan Tang with modifications

*To assist in reducing toxins can add herbs like Yu Xing Cao, Lu Gen, Jie Geng, Chuan Xin Lian

 

2.  Disease progressing – Congestion in body becomes worse, fever goes up and down, lung condition worsens, coughing with blood. This is more heat attacking the Lung causing External and internal heat congestion combined with Damp Heat toxins, and evil obstructs the Shao Yang Channel.

Tx principal:  Clear heat and toxicity, drain the Lungs of turbid Qi

Formulas:

A.        Heat toxin attacking the lungs – high fever, coughing with blood

Qing Wen Bai Du San with modifications

B.        External and Internal heat congestion with toxicity Qing Fei Jie Du Tang

C.        Damp heat congestion and toxicity Gan Lu Xiao Du Dan with modifications

D.        Damp heat obstruction in the Shao Yang channel

Hao Qin Qing Dan Tang

3.         Cllapse – Shock like state with severe sweating, respiratory failure.  Here there    is heat toxicity obstructing the Lungs, the Evil Qi is much more strong, the Zheng

Qi is severely deficient, there is severe Yin deficiency and  internal obstruction with external collapse “Tou Zhen”

A.        Phlegm Damp obstruction with heat toxicity –

Huo Xue Xie Fei Tang or Yi Fei Hua Zhou Tang

B.        Obstruction of Lung Channel

C.        Damp heat obstruction of the Lungs

D.        Qi and Yin Xu

E.         Evil excess, Zheng Qi deficiency

F.         Internal obstruction – respiratory failure – here is where you need to open

Open the orifices, tonify and consolidate Qi

Sheng Fu Tang with modifications

Tx principal:  Benefit Qi, release toxicity, transform phlegm and damp, open the meridians, resolve dirty phlegm, open orifices, tonify  and consolidate Qi

4.  Recovery stage – Pt is still weak with Qi and Yin deficiency, Lung and Spleen deficiency.  Damp heat and toxins are still in the body

A.        Qi and Yin Xu – tonify Qi, Nourish Yin, transform dampness in the meridians. Qing Shu Yi Qi Tang with modifications

B.        Spleen and Lung Deficiency – Tonify Lu and Sp, clear heat and toxins, clears damp Sheng Ling Bai Zhu San


The Corona virus main cause or disease is damp toxicity, not heat toxicity with dampness.  In treating heat toxicity with dampness, the strategy is usually to clear heat, resolve toxins and dispel dampness. However, when treating dampness toxicity that transforms into heat or retained dampness heat toxin, if you clear heat and resolve toxins using cold herbs to early this will inevitably exacerbate the dampness and lead to cold enveloping heat.  Which then creates an adverse effect on treatment outcomes.  So, in treating this disease, the focus should be on resolving turbidity with aroma out thrusting through the exterior and upbearing and down bearing the spleen and stomach. As dampness is resolved, depressed heat can disperse and toxicity will be unable to form – in this way symptoms will gradually resolve.

Transforming heat can progress into yangming brightness bowel repletion, which would exacerbate lung qi depression and block qi.  Once yangming brightness bowel repletion is significant, dampness can very easily transform into damp toxicity, heat, toxicity and stagnation, eventually leading to severe qi reversal and the onset of MODS.  (Multi organ dysfunction syndrome).

In some of the more severe cases where the patient is already on a respirator or ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) the stomach and chest are always hot to the touch while the extremities are cold.  This is a symptom of sepsis.  So, a key aspect of treatment is resolving dampness, unblocking the bowels and draining turbidity in the early phase. In keeping with the above discussion, we selected Ma Xing Yi Gan Tang,    Sheng Jiang San, D Yuan Yin, Hou pu Xia Ling Tang, Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San and Yin Qiao San as our base formulas and implemented a Chinese Medicine Protocol.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chinese herbs

ReWilding Into 2020

Wishing you All The Best in the New Year!

      Good Health and Happiness and

we look forward to working with you in 2020!

Are you ready to say goodbye to this decade and start a new one?

I’ve been rethinking some of the last 10 years big wins and losses, lessons and life events. Many have made indelible imprints on me but one, I feel compelled to share with you.

I lived in Los Angeles for most of my adult life until 5 years ago when we decided to leap into the unknown world of Bend, Oregon. Moving to a “rural” town from a huge metropolis as you can imagine was both an adventure and challenge. It’s been soooo much more, but the biggest change after 5 years I can now pinpoint as my ability to “ReWild”.

What I mean by “ReWilding” is living closer to natures rhythms, to be grounded through the natural cycles of life and by doing so improving my health and well being.

For example, following a 24 hour cycle more closely. Sleeping closer to when its first dark, waking when its first light (especially in the winter months). Playing outdoors daily, (even if it’s only walking) no matter what the weather. Simple things like eating with the seasons, returning to our roots, returning to ourselves. (I find this easier when I limit my time on social media.) That’s what ReWilding means to me.

Why is “ReWilding” Important?

I’m using this term “Rewilding” loosely, what I want to convey is grounding, or anchoring yourself in the present to reverse the process of 21st century connected lifestyle. When you’re eating, be fully present and enjoy your food completely. When you’re exercising, same philosophy, be there completely, for work and for social engagements same. Our quick moving society often distracts us from the present. Rewilding philosophy is a slowing down to return to ourselves. This not only lowers are stress levels, but releases our creative juices and our intuitive selves.

I know for sure you can ReWild yourself anywhere and everywhere, wherever you may be. It’s like coming home to a place you’ve always belonged too.

For 2020, my wish for you is a little time to discover ReWilding for yourself. The health benefits just might surprise you.

Happy ReWilding,
Cathy Margolin L.Ac. & Team
Founder & Self-Proclaimed ReWilder at Pacific Herbs

Peanut Allergy Breakthrough With Chinese Herbs FAHF-2 A New Botanical Drug

Food allergy herbal formula-2 (FAHF-2) prevents and reverses peanut allergy in an animal model of peanut anaphylaxes.

The food allergy phenomenon has grown to huge proportions in the last decade. Peanut allergies have become increasingly on the rise and drug companies are looking for a novel way of treating people whose only salvation currently may be an Epi-Pen for people for sever, life-threatening reactions. An herbal formula written by a very famous Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) doctor, Dr. Zhang Zhong Jing, nearly 2000 years ago may have the answers we’ve all been waiting for.

This herbal approach is not the same as recent suggestions about building up tolerance to peanuts buy eating a small amount daily over time. The ongoing herbal study for food intolerance and food allergies has passed initial FDA testing in-vivo and in-vitro and is now successfully being studied on human patients with allergies to tree nuts, peanuts, fish, shell fish and sesame allergies. The human studies have been approved by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine Institutional Review Board.

Intermittent attacks of abdominal pain, a stifling sensation, irritability, and warmth in the chest (anxiety), diarrhea after eating, and cold hands and feet are all symptoms TCM recognizes as part of the expression of food allergies after someone eats trigger foods. The food allergy herbal formula known as FAHF-2 contains nine well studied Chinese herbs. Peanut allergic mice given FAHF-2 were found to establish a peanut tolerance. This effect was associated with up-regulation of interferon-gamma by CD8+T cells.

Herb quality is absolutely critical to effectiveness and the herbs should be verified through HPLC fingerprinting according to the FDA’s Guidance for Industry Botanical Drug Products. The pharmacological actions of individual herbs comprising FAHF-2 on peanut induced anaphylactic reactions determined all nine herbs were necessary to prevent anaphylactic reactions. Results showed that some individual herbs reduced peanut induced anaphylactic symptoms but no single herb offered full protection from anaphylactic symptoms equivalent to FAHF-2.

‘The herbs had highly variable effects on histamine release, as well as peanut specific serum IgE and IgG2a levels. The herbs also had variable effects on IL-4, IL-5 and IFN-γ levels. A simplified formula comprised of only the most efficacious individual herbs showed only partial efficacy and was not able to reproduce the effects of FAHF-2. This finding suggested that component herbs of FAHF-2 may be working synergistically to produce the curative therapeutic effects produced by the whole herb formula.”1

For more information regarding the nine herbs used in the study please see the link below. To purchase the nine herb formula please contact Cathy@PacHerbs.com. Individual consultations are available upon request.

 

  1. www .ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4118473/
Melanoma herb Borage supplement

Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine Effective for Skin Cancer

A research group at the University of  Graz in Germany showed a Chinese herb has efficacy against black skin cancer also known as malignant melanoma. 

This type of cancer accounts for 80% of skin cancer deaths. When detected early it is well treated but few treatment options have yet to be effective.  

New research shows Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a promising candidate against malignant melanoma. A plant used in Chinese Herbal Medicine has been successfully tested on skin cancer cells and mice. 

They started by analyzing hundreds of plant extracts. Team member Kretschmer, said,

 “We started out from the question as to which plants are used in TCM as a cure for cancer-like diseases and whether an active substance for fighting cancer can be obtained from them,” explains project team member Kretschmer. “The concept of cancer varies partly between TCM and Western medicine, which is why all remedies used in TCM against cancer and cancer-like diseases were of interest to us. In a pilot project, the group created a database with several hundred potential plants. Dried samples from a selection of 76 of these plants were used to produce 253 extracts, and these were tested on various cancer cells. The researchers identified one plant that seemed promising enough for further studies. The scientific name of the plant is Onosma paniculata Bureau & Franch, a member of the Onosma genus.”

The active ingredient was successfully tested.

“We tested a substance called β-β-dimethylacrylshikonin, which we had obtained from the plant, directly on malignant melanoma cells and were able to prove it had an effect,” says Kretschmer. The substance destroyed the cancer cells. These favourable results encouraged the research team to carry out the first in vivo tests. Naked mice suffering from skin cancer were treated with the drug by injecting it directly into the tumours to see if there were any side effects. “That was successful as well; we saw no side effects and the tumours responded to the treatment and died.” The researchers observed both apoptosis, which is a controlled cell death, and necrosis, which is uncontrolled cell death.

Increased efficacy

“We then tried to modify the substance to see if we could improve its efficacy even further,” notes the researcher. Among several modifications, they found one particular shikonin derivative that proved to be particularly effective.
In theory, the substance is suitable for the development of a drug, but there is still a long way to go before such a drug becomes available. “This will require larger-scale studies, and the route of administration is still an undecided issue.” Two follow-up projects are already in the pipeline.

Kretschmer emphasizes that TCM served only as a source of inspiration for new active compounds. It is still unclear how exactly the plant works in TCM. “There is no clear idea of how this plant develops its beneficial effect in TCM. It is uncommon in TCM to use just a single plant, normally it is a combination that can be prepared in different ways,” relates Kretschmer. The plants are usually prepared as infusions and boiled twice for a long time. “When we prepare our plant in this way, we no longer see the anti-tumour effect in the cell culture test,” explains Kretschmer. “TCM also knows another preparation method using oil, which is then applied to the affected areas of the skin. This oil contains a higher concentration of the active shikonins.”

In the course of the project, the researchers also found a way to phytochemically verify the identity of different plant species with a similar morphology. “There are roots that look very similar to those of the plant we are investigating, and we have found that these species are often sold under false names in China.” This is a problem because some of the plants offered for sale contain substances that can be harmful. Kretschmer and the research team found a method using thin-layer chromatography that helps to distinguish between the plants and is simple enough to be used e.g. in pharmacies. The research project ran for four years and was completed in early 2019. The team cooperated with the Medical University in Graz and the Helmholtz Institute in Munich.

Publications

Kretschmer, N.; Deutsch, A.; Durchschein, C.; Rinner, B.; Stallinger, A.; Higareda-Almaraz, J.C.; Scheideler, M.; Lohberger, B.; Bauer, R.: Comparative Gene Expression Analysis in WM164 Melanoma Cells Revealed That β-β-Dimethylacrylshikonin Leads to ROS Generation, Loss of Mitochondrial Membrane Potential, and Autophagy Induction, in: Molecules 2018, 23

Durchschein, C.; Hufner, A.; Rinner, B.; Stallinger, A.; Deutsch, A.; Lohberger, B.; Bauer, R.; Kretschmer, N.: Synthesis of Novel Shikonin Derivatives and Pharmacological Effects of Cyclopropylacetylshikonin on Melanoma Cells, in: Molecules 2018, 23

Jahanafrooz, Z; Stallinger, A; Anders, I; Kleinegger, F; Lohberger, B; Durchschein, C; Bauer, R; Deutsch, A; Rinner, B; Kretschmer, N.: Influence of silibinin and β-β-dimethylacrylshikonin on chordoma cells, in: Phytomedicine 2018, 49

http://scilog.fwf.ac.at/

Is The Almighty Coffee Bean Part of Chinese Medicine?

Coffee as Chinese MedicineI’m a coffee drinker alas only in moderation. Now, I’m re-thinking that moderation as I learn more about the benefits of the coffee bean. 

 

A cup of coffee is 2% caffeine and 98% other bioactive ingredients. To say the least, it is a complex beverage. People seem to forget that the coffee bean is an herb. Indeed, the coffee plant belongs to the Rubiaceae family, which is a source of several different Chinese herbs, including the gardenia fruit. Coffee beans medicinal effects have been well known for millenia but some of the first popular evidence was in 1908, when the Indian Materia Medica was first published.  

 

At the proper dosages, the coffee bean has the ability to improve health in several ways. Drinking coffee can increase cardiovascular health and lower the risk of colon cancer, gallstones, cirrhosis, and Parkinson’s disease. A typical dosage for this type of herbal medicine is in the range of 6-18 grams per day, which translates to about 1-3 cups of coffee, depending on how many grams of ground beans are used. Roasting the coffee beans do not detract from the beneficial effects of this herb.

 

The primary active substances in the coffee bean are chlorogenic and caffeic acids. These substances have been shown to have anti-depressant and anti-anxiety effects. No wonder the local coffee shop has become our favorite pit stops. Coffee also contains antioxidant phenols that can reduce the risk of cancer.  (Like so many Chinese herbs, many many benefits. Probably a lot we don’t even understand fully, yet.

 

This blog idea was inspired by a study on long-term coffee drinker with type 2 diabetes mellitus.  To quote the study, “long-term coffee consumption is associated with a statistically significantly lower risk for type 2 diabetes,”  (link below) Coffee, just like any other potent herbal medicine, is not necessarily for everyone, as some people may be more sensitive to the effects of caffeine. But the coffee bean definitelycontains many beneficial vitamins including potassium, niacin and magnesium. 

 

Drinking a freshly brewed cup of this herbal bean can have some wonderful health benefits. Enjoy, but drink responsibly. Dont use coffee and the caffiene to keep your energy high all day long. This is actually a great way to burn our your adrenal glands. Coffee like almost all things is best used in moderation.  

Study Link
Am J Clin Nutr. 2001 Mar;73(3):532-8.Consumption of high doses of chlorogenic acid, present in coffee, or of black tea increases plasma total homocysteine concentrations in humans.  Olthof MR, Hollman PC, Zock PL, Katan MB.                   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11237928
Progesterone supplements

Hormonal Balance Estrogen & Progesterone

Today we’re seeing a tremendous number of women and men who are struggling with hormonal imbalances. Breast cancer to prostate enlargement, PCOS, and menopause symptoms are easily recognizable hormonal symptoms but what about symptoms such as cold hands, irritability, mood swings, pre-menopausal bone fractures, sluggish metabolism (fatigue), thyroid dysfunction, fibrocystic breasts, anxiety, fibroids, irregular menstrual cycles, insomnia and to name just a few?

All of these symptoms can be related to hormonal imbalance and a state known as “Estrogen Dominance” which refers to as a cumulative load of estrogen effects that outpace progesterone.

So how does someone become “estrogen dominant” and how does estrogen affect our overall health? Understanding the causes requires first a look at the most common places we find estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen (E1) is produced mainly in the ovaries. Progesterone is produced mainly from the outside lining of a mature egg released from the ovaries. Women who take or took birth control pills have a unique situation in that they do not ovulate, therefore they miss out on 90% of their body’s ability to produce progesterone. (HRT and even bio/identical hormones also have effects for brevity this article will not cover.) Without progesterone, estrogen can easily dominate. The progestin in birth control pills does not act like natural progesterone our bodies produce. Natural bio-mimicking progesterone can be created from certain yams and soy plants. However, natural progesterone cannot be patented, which is where progestin comes in.

Estrogen can also become a dominant hormone through the exposure to xeno-estrogens (chemicals that act on estrogen hormone receptors). Our environment is loaded with xeno-estrogens in unprecedented amounts. Xeno-estrogens are known endocrine-disrupting chemicals and can be found in:

Body-care products, including ones like sunscreens we coat on our bodies.
Pesticides in our food supply
Hormones used to plump up animals in our meat supply chain
Hormones in our milk supply
Unfiltered tap water can contain synthetic estrogen from birth control pills
Microwaving food in plastic containers releases xeno-estrogens
Some non-stick coated cookware release xeno-estrogens
Plastic water bottles contain xeno-estrogen chemicals
Processed food can contain propyl-paraben a well known endocrine disruptor (Propylparaben is in 49 widely-available processed foods 1)

We can solve this, right? We can drink filtered water, eat only organic meat and vegetables, change some lifestyle habits and our hormones will go back into balance, problem solved. Theoretically, this approach should work, IF the body can detox/eliminate the accumulated toxic estrogen load. Often this load is stored in fat and obesity becomes another factor.

If you see patients with estrogen dominant symptoms, lifestyle changes alone are often not enough to bring the body back into balance. This is where patients need our help. (Additionally, there are other causes of xeno-estrogens this article does not have space to include: i.e. exposure to household chemicals, building chemicals, years of hormone therapy use including bio-Identical/bio-mimicking hormones and even a person’s gut bacteria aka. microbiome.1

Some considerations

Modalities we can incorporate into our health regimes include ways to release the toxic load of estrogen and create a safer by-product during the break-down or detoxing process. Imbalances of hormones directly affect the liver which tends to be on overdrive when symptoms of estrogen dominance are present. Food, herbs and a few well-known supplements are excellent choices to help this process. Improving liver function is fuel for the detoxification process. Consider what “Functional Medicine” has been teaching; when the liver breaks down estrogen (and xeno-estrogens) by-products termed metabolites are formed. Creating a safer estrogen by-product or metabolite should be part of the overall detoxification plan. Excretion of metabolites can be impaired by poor methylation and abnormal gut flora.

A few ways we can help our patients optimize liver function and the detoxification of estrogen:

Chinese herbs formula Jia Wei Xiao Yao San AKA Relax Herb Pack – This popular Chinese herb formula sold worldwide for stress and anxiety outsells all other Chinese formulas, year after year. Stress dramatically affects liver function through continual overproduction of cortisol, rather than progesterone. Since both hormones are derived from the precursor hormone pregnenolone, a situation known as pregnenolone steal develops. When the body determines cortisol is more important to make than progesterone, estrogen dominance can flourish. Treat the liver stress and the downstream effects will improve.
Methionine – This supplement provides sulfur (not the same as sulfa drugs) and acts as a cellular cleanser. It literally donates methyl groups for the biochemical reaction that rids you of poisons and harmful estrogen by-products. Foods can also donate methyl groups a few good ones are beets, legumes, eggs, broccoli, leafy greens, nuts and sunflower seeds.
Methylcobalamin – A form of B12, this supplement also provides a “methyl” group which helps the estrogen detoxification process. Keep in minds, antacids, some diabetes medications, certain cholesterol-binding medicines and alcohol can wipe out your supply of methylcobalamin.
Calcium D-Glucarate – This is not the same as plain calcium. Toxins must combine with water-soluble substances to leave your body. This supplement combines with estrogen to help move it out.
Reishi Mushroom and other Chinese Medicinal Herbs – Reishi is high in poly-saccharides which feed the body’s microbiome, this in turn benefits liver metabolite breakdown.
Fermented foods such as miso soup, tempeh, kombucha, fermented vegetables i.e. pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi. (For more suggestions see my blogs at http://www.PacHerbs.com/blog/)

Keep in mind, reaching hormone balance can be accomplished faster with the elimination and avoidance of xeno-estrogens. However, most functional medicine doctors will agree, diet, supplements, exercise and lifestyle-based strategies are equally important. Establish realistic patient lifestyle goals and together you will be successful in treating the root causes and symptoms of estrogen dominance and create lifelong habits for balanced hormones.

 

References:

1. Microbiome Researcher, Rob Knight Ph.D. The American Gut Project http://americangut.org/
2. Environmental Working Group. http://www.ewg.org/research/ewg-s-dirty-dozen-guide-food-additives/generally-recognized-as-safe-but-is-it
3. More great info on the human microbiome https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DTrENdWvvM

titanium dioxide danger

Titanium Dioxide Proven to Negatively Affect Your Gut Microbiota

New research from the University of Sydney reveals titanium dioxides negatively impacts gut microbiota.  Many diseases like inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer are linked to healthy gut microbiome.

Although you might not ever intentionally consume titanium dioxide it is commonly found in processed foods, vitamins and many dietary supplements. Check the ingredients in your vitamins and supplements to find out whether you’ve been unknowingly consuming titanium dioxide.  This just-released research from Australia presents pivotal evidence on the effects of titanium dioxide on our gut microbiota. Co-author of the study Assoc. Professor Macia said, “this study investigated the effect of titanium dioxide … and how it promoted the formations of biofilms.” Biofilms are bacteria that stick together and often impenetrable by antibiotics and many drug therapies. Biofilms have been reported in diseases such as colorectal cancer.

Many vitamin and herb manufacturers use titanium dioxide as a filler or excipient in over the counter dietary supplements.  Everything from your melatonin for sleeplessness to your multi-vitamins may contain small amounts of this toxic chemical.  The Univ. of Sydney study showed even nanoparticles of titanium dioxide have a harmful effect on our gut bacteria.

One of the founding principals of Pacific Herbs and reason for launching this herbal business was to bring the purest and most potent herbs to consumers. Pacific Herbs products have never contained any unnecessary fillers or excipients, and would never add titanium dioxide under any conditions.  Check your bottles of supplements in your kitchen.  Find out the truth, hopefully, they don’t contain this nasty chemical. If they do, return them to the place of purchase and use that money to buy pure products that will improve your health not harm it.

More information here.

See University of Sydney study here

supplements for insomnia

Study Links Allergies to Sleep Quality

Are your allergies connected to how well you sleep?

A study conducted by New York Medical College says there is a link between your REM sleep and your allergy symptoms.

We all know getting enough quality sleep is key to good overall health. This first-of-its-kind study is a breakthrough for many suffering from allergies.

“When I started focusing on the new REM-RDI numbers, I was able to connect patient’s symptoms such as fatigue, allergies, nasal blockage or congestion” with REM abnormalities, said Dr. Berson. “This led to the correlation of tired allergic patients having a problem during REM and some patients who were tired and had REM-RDI elevations testing positive for allergies.”

While the new approach can provide patients with sleep issues better diagnoses and new symptoms to look for, Dr. Berson cautions that there is no one-size-fits-all diagnosis.

“Every patient is different and the study aims to provide more clarity on the relationship between allergies and a person’s overall quality of sleep,” said Dr. Berson. “The airway begins in the nose and its anatomic form needs to be properly balanced with its function. This shows that Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) doctors, as well as allergists and sleep physicians, should be collaborating more closely to help pinpoint sleeping problems patients may be facing.”

If you’re having trouble sleeping try iSleep Herb Pack a combination of herbs used together for over 500 years which will not interfere with any allergy medication you may be taking.  iSleep herbs will help quiet your mind and stop the ruminating process. A quiet mind helps you get to REM sleep much faster and longer. Give it a try here, or find it on Amazon here.

 

Recipes For A Happy and Healthy Gut

What’s the best way to build your microbiome, your gut bacteria?

What’s the best way to build diversity in your gut bacteria?

Food!

Your food is your medicine. Here a few really fun to eat and fun to make medicinal recipes to build your those friendly gut bacteria and boost your immune system without costly, ineffective probiotics all grown from basically the same strain of Lactobacillus.

Have fun with these recipes. Tweak them and enjoy!!


Brownies For Your Bacteria

Makes about 16 brownies
(2 grams of fiber per brownie)

The flavonoids in chocolate are a healthy treat. You can indulge in this amazing superfood and feel good about giving this dessert to your kids while simultaneously feeding your good gut bacteria.

Ingredients:

6 ounces dark chocolate (70 percent cocoa)
5 TBLS unsalted cultured organic butter
1 cup almond meal
1/3 cup organic cane sugar
1 TBLS cacao nibs
2 large organic eggs
1 TBLS vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp sea salt
1 TBLS orange zest ( or 4 drops orange oil)
A handful of walnuts optional

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave or double broiler stirring occasionally so chocolate melts but does not burn. Add the almond meal, sugar, cacao nibs, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and orange zest (or oil) and whisk together. Add nuts if desired. Pour into an 8×8 oiled baking pan. (Coconut oil work well.)

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.


Orange Miso Dipping Sauce for Veggies & Fish 

Seeds are a great source of fiber. Eating a variety of seeds is easy as sprinkling them into your oatmeal, salads, cooked veggies or yogurt. This easy sauce makes everything taste scrumptious.

Ingredients:

Squeeze juice of 2 oranges & 4 TBLS of orange pulp blended till smooth (about 1 cup total)
2 TBLS unpasteurized miso paste (white or yellow)
2 TBLS Sesame Oil
1 TBLS grated fresh ginger
1 TBLS grated orange peel

Blend all ingredients in the blender and ENJOY!


NOT NAKED POPCORN

Serves 4-5 the best snack
(2.5 grams of fiber per serving)

Your microbiome thrive on fiber and this delicious popcorn gives you plenty!
When you add an assortment the of healthy topping listed below you spice up your
Naked Popcorn with vitamins, minerals and even more fiber all which boost those healthy bugs within. Experiment with your own mix and match toppings. Please do avoid the microwave popcorn. Organic corn kernels are very inexpensive and you can either use a popcorn maker or large pot.

Ingredients:

2 TBLS sesame oil or Organic Coconut oil
½ cup organic popcorn kernels
2 sheets nori seaweed crushed
½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp wasabi powder
1 tsp cayenne powder (optional) –
OR – Braggs Organic Sprinkles – OR – Lemon & Pepper seasoning OR Truffle Salt OR Fresh parsley, chives, and Tarragon, OR Basil and garlic


Morning Smoothie For a Happy Gut

Start your day with green veggies and hemp protein powder your gut will thank you. This easy smoothie recipe can be modified with season fruit such as pears and peaches. Frozen organic mangos or frozen blueberries are also a great choice. Mix and match as you like and seasonal fruit permits.

Ingredients:
1 Organic pear or peach (remove seeds and pit but leave the skin on)
1-2 TBLS organic hemp protein powder
½ cup frozen mango or frozen blueberries
1 cup non-dairy milk (coconut, almond, oat milk you decide)
2 cups leafy greens (spinach, kale, beet greens, or a mix of all)
1 cup plain unsweetened kefir or yogurt (Non-dairy yogurt is preferable)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Put all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.


Super Pre-Biotic Sauerkraut

The simplest form of sauerkraut is just cabbage and salt, which is where we start in this recipe.

Once the salt is added, simply massage with clean hands for 10 minutes or until the cabbage has reduced quite a bit in size and released quite a bit of liquid at the base of the bowl. Now, add some color and flavor.

I like shredded carrots and beets, which provide a vibrant orange-magenta hue. Next come fresh minced garlic and fresh grated ginger and turmeric for big flavor. The result is a perfectly salted fresh vegetable sauerkraut infused with zesty garlic and ginger and earthy turmeric. Mix again to incorporate and you’ve practically made sauerkraut!  Mix again to incorporate and you’ve practically made sauerkraut!pack.

Pack into sterilized glass jars and ensure the liquid extracted from all that massaging rises up and covers the kraut for optimum fermentation. Then leave it alone to do its thing. Set it on the counter out of direct sunlight or in a cabinet for 1-14 days (or longer) to let it naturally ferment. This recipe will have a tangy, fresh, garlicky, delicious crunchy taste.

 


Sea Salt and Lime Homemade Jicama Chips

(4 Servings)

Ingredients:
3 jicamas
chili powder
garlic powder
onion powder
salt
Directions:  Peel and slice jicama into thin slices. Spread out on top of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Season to taste. Coat chips with organic coconut cooking spray.

Place in oven at 400° F for approximately 25-30 minutes, or until crisp.

Enjoy with your favorite low-calorie dip!


Wildish Grain-Free Granola

Ingredients:

1 cup organic dates cut into small pieces

2 cups organic chopped walnuts

1 cup organic coconut flakes

1 cup organic sunflower seeds

1 cup organic pumpkin seeds

1 1/2 cups dry roasted salted organic cashews

1 cup organic pecans (cut into small pieces)

1/2 cup organic goji berries (optional)

1/2 cup banana chips cut into bite-size  (optional)

Directions:  Mix together in large bowl and then store in an airtight glass container. Keep in a refrigerator for maximum freshness.

 

menopause natural relief

Rock Your Menopause

Coming February 2020 – The Rock Your Menopause Challenge!

A program that spotlights the top areas in your life that are sabotaging your hormonal balance. 

Cathy Margolin, Licensed Acupuncturist, speaker, author and “been there – done that”  Menopause Guru has helped hundreds of women balance their hormones naturally at any age and every stage.  Learn healthy, simple solutions so you can sail through Menopause. PS. Without drugs.

Join the Rock Your Menopause Facebook group here!

menopause natural relief