The Many Marvels of Magnesium!

This is an exerpt of an article (link below) by Catherine Stack in the Niagara Gazette. Catherine is a naturopathic doctor and a nurse-midwife. Check out her recommendations on the use of Magnesium.

NATURAL HEALTH: The Many Marvels of Magnesium

“Next to Omega-3’s and Vitamin D3, magnesium ranks as one of my favorite supplements. No other supplement has noticeably improved a variety of conditions in such a short amount of time.

Magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in your body. It helps to maintain muscle and nerve function, helps keep heart rhythm steady, supports a healthy immune system, and keeps bones strong. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis.

Suffer from muscle cramps, muscle pain and restless leg syndrome? Taking magnesium can improve your symptoms in as little as a few days. Chronic headaches, including migraines, will likely become less frequent and may resolve themselves all together.

For those of you who worry about your heart and may have high blood pressure, magnesium may help you as well. Magnesium has been shown to regulate heart rhythm, prevent angina, control high blood pressure, and limit the complications of congestive heart failure.

I have had amazing results helping those with IBS and chronic constipation. Magnesium deficiency is a common finding in the constipated individual. Constipated people typically suffer from frequent headaches and magnesium helps both problems.

In the world of obstetrics, magnesium plays a very important and potentially lifesaving roll in preventing seizures in women who have pre-eclampsia or HELLP syndrome. Many pregnant women also suffer leg cramps and constipation and oral supplementation will help both of these common complaints.

Deficiency of magnesium can present psychiatric symptoms including depression, anxiety, restlessness, and irritability. Children with ADHD are deficient in many common minerals, most often magnesium, zinc, and iron. Magnesium supplementation significantly decreases the hyperactivity symptoms in children with ADHD.”

Green Tea May Help Ward Off Dementia, and Protect Against Cancer

More benefits from Green Tea!

Green tea could help ward off dementia, scientists show

It could also play a vital role in protecting the body against cancer, the study in the journal Phytomedicine suggests.

Led by Ed Okello, the Newcastle University team wanted to know if the protective properties known to be present in the freshly brewed form are still active once the tea has been digested.

Dr Okello, from the university’s School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, said: ‘What was really exciting about this study was that we found when green tea is digested by enzymes in the gut, the resulting chemicals are actually more effective against key triggers of Alzheimer’s development than the undigested form of the tea.’

‘In addition to this, we also found the digested compounds had anti-cancer properties, significantly slowing down the growth of the tumour cells which we were using in our experiments.’

Digestion is a vital process which provides our bodies with the nutrients we need to survive. But nutrients are not necessarily absorbed into the body once food is digested. “It’s one of the reasons why we have to be so careful when we make claims about the health benefits of various foods and supplements,” Okello said.

‘There are certain chemicals we know to be beneficial and we can identify foods which are rich in them but what happens during the digestion process is crucial to whether these foods are actually doing us any good.’

As part of the research, the Newcastle team worked in collaboration with Dr Gordon McDougall of the Plant Products and Food Quality Group at the Scottish Crop Research Institute in Dundee, who developed technology which simulates the human digestive system.”

A Component in Birch Bark May Treat Metabolic Disorders

Herbs and natural treatments are amazing things! In fact, so much of what we have today is derived from natural sources, it is no wonder scientists are taking a second look at natural sources to treat and help conditions. Now, it appears that simple birch tree bark may contain a beneficail treatment for metabolic disorders and obesity!

Betulin in birch bark could treat metabolic disorders

“In an animal study, researchers found betulin from birch bark lowered cholesterol, obesity and improved insulin resistance.
Scientists studied betulin in mice finding the ingredient that is abundant in birch bark lowered cholesterol and improved insulin sensitivity. They also found the mice became more resistant to plaque buildup in the arteries that can lead to heart attack.

According to Bao-Liang Song of the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, betulin has several benefits for metabolic health because it targets sterol regulatory element-binding proteins (SREBPs) that activate cholesterol, fatty acid and triglyceride biosynthesis.

He says, ‘Our study shows that the SREBP pathway is a good target for several metabolic diseases.’ In the study Liang’s team treated mice fed a high fat Western diet with either betulin or the cholesterol lowering drug lovastatin or a placebo.”

Olive Oil Helps the Heart!

Olive Oil, and green, leafy vegetables are heart healthy!

More evidence olive oil and veggies help the heart

“(Reuters Health) – It’s no secret that eating well is good for both body and mind, so it may not come as a surprise that a new study finds women who eat more olive oil and leafy vegetables such as salads and cooked spinach are significantly less likely to develop heart disease.

A group of Italian researchers found that women who ate at least 1 serving of leafy vegetables per day were more than 40 percent less likely to develop heart disease over an average of eight years, relative to women who ate two or fewer portions of those vegetables each week.

Women who downed at least 3 tablespoons of olive oil daily – such as in salad dressing – were also 40 percent less likely to be diagnosed with heart disease, compared to women who ate the least olive oil.

It’s not exactly clear why specifically leafy vegetables and olive oil may protect the heart, study author Dr. Domenico Palli of the Cancer Research and Prevention Institute in Florence told Reuters Health. “Probably the mechanisms responsible for the protective effect of plant-origin foods on cardiovascular diseases involve micronutrients such as folate, antioxidant vitamins and potassium, all present in green leafy vegetables.”

Folate reduces blood levels of homocysteine, Palli explained, which is thought to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease by damaging the inner lining of arteries. Other studies have shown people who eat more potassium have lower blood pressure, which can protect the cardiovascular system. Virgin olive oil may be particularly effective at lowering heart disease risk because of its high level of antioxidant plant compounds, he added.”