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for holistic wellness and balance in life


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Spices, Herbs – Mantra of Diet

The Mantra of Diet today is constantly shifting.  However, the pursuit of spices has helped shaped our world as we know today. Hundreds of years ago, merchants from Europe traveled by land and sea to transport exotic and expensive plants such as cinnamon, rosemary, nutmeg and turmeric from Asia. But when the Ottoman Empire restricted Europe’s spice routes to Asia in the 1400s, explorers such as Christopher Columbus looked for alternate routes to India and instead stumbled on our glorious land. It’s not a far stretch to thank cinnamon for our providence.

Spices hold a special place in human existence that we are just starting to understand. Sure, they are prized to provide bold and unique flavors, aromas and colors to otherwise bland foods. But many don’t know the hidden story: before the invention of refrigeration, spices’ underlying bioactivity, in the form of potent and diverse antioxidant and antimicrobial food-preserving properties, helped to prevent sickness and contagion caused by food spoilage. Thus, spices carried a magical aura for those who demanded them, and at the same time, they provided a livelihood for many generations of farmers, harvesters and suppliers.

Today, our interest in spices has shifted to the scientific study of their health benefits, to see if they can help us live healthier lives. On a molecular level, the chemical properties that make spices great flavorings, colorings and food preservatives are closely linked to the properties which help to promote human health. Polyphenols, carotenoids and terpenoids are all highly bioactive and health-supporting classes of compounds common to many spices, and are the focus of thousands of medical research studies.

Consuming enough of these active compounds to make a difference in our health can be tough through food alone. The mantra of many is that a diet with a diversity of spices can help us live longer, but no one is suggesting that fried chicken made with 14 of them is a health food (yet!). And while variety may be the “spice of life,” research suggests a variety of spices added to food can lead to a tendency to overeat.1 Likewise, consumer health media recommendations to sprinkle some cinnamon on toast or add a pinch of turmeric powder to curry may be naïve to some key underlying practical and scientific caveats such as compliance, dose response and opposing effects.

For instance, a clinically significant effective dose of cinnamon powder often recommended for managing blood sugar is a teaspoon or more—quite a “cinnamon challenge” for the palate and the stomach. Impurities that can be found in cinnamon powder, such as added sulfites and naturally occurring coumarin can tip the opposing-effects equation in the wrong direction, especially when doses are in baking measurements. On the other hand, science has validated the efficacy of concentrated, purified extracts, both from Chinese cinnamon (cassia) as well as “true” cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum syn. zeylanicum). Both the “whole food” and the scientific approaches have merits, but the second seems to garner increasingly more credibility among top medical experts.

Topical applications of spices have been used in traditional medicine like Ayurveda for hundreds of years, with turmeric being well proven and used by allopathic physicians for its wound-healing capabilities. The bioactivities of spices that preserve food also promote health in ways that are well known mechanistically, but in a clinical-sense are just now emerging. For example, in a 2014 study, an ointment containing cinnamon was effective at reducing pain after childbirth.7 In another study, a topical application of black pepper essential oil improved vein visibility for IV insertion better than the standard of care.8 This study did not measure whether sneezing increased, although the essential oil used in the study would probably have improved dinner too.

The potential of spices in human health and wellness is vast, and with sound science, more is learned every day about how and why spices can be beneficial.


 

Sources:

Original Article by Blake Ebersole

1.       Jones JB et al. “A randomized trial on the effects of flavorings on the health benefits of daily peanut consumption.” Am J Clin Nutr. 2014 Mar;99(3):490-6. DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.113.069401.

2.       Nieman DC et al. “Influence of red pepper spice and turmeric on inflammation and oxidative stress biomarkers in overweight females: a metabolomics approach.” Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2012 Dec;67(4):415-21. DOI: 10.1007/s11130-012-0325-x.

3.       Cox KH, Pipingas A, Scholey AB. “Investigation of the effects of solid lipid curcumin on cognition and mood in a healthy older population.” J Psychopharmacol. 2014 Oct 2. PII: 0269881114552744.

4.       Pengelly A et al. “Short-term study on the effects of rosemary on cognitive function in an elderly population.” J Med Food. 2012 Jan;15(1):10-7. DOI: 10.1089/jmf.2011.0005..

5.       McCaffrey R, Thomas DJ, Kinzelman AO. “The effects of lavender and rosemary essential oils on test-taking anxiety among graduate nursing students.” Holist Nurs Pract. 2009 Mar-Apr;23(2):88-93. DOI: 10.1097/HNP.0b013e3181a110aa.

6.       Lindheimer JB, Loy BD, O’Connor PJ. “Short-term effects of black pepper (Piper nigrum) and rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis and Rosmarinus eriocalyx) on sustained attention and on energy and fatigue mood states in young adults with low energy.” J Med Food. 2013 Aug;16(8):765-71. DOI: 10.1089/jmf.2012.0216.

7.       Mohammadi A et al. “Effects of cinnamon on perineal pain and healing of episiotomy: a randomized placebo-controlled trial.” J Integr Med. 2014 Jul;12(4):359-66. DOI: 10.1016/S2095-4964(14)60025-X.

8.       Kristiniak S et al. “Black pepper essential oil to enhance intravenous catheter insertion in patients with poor vein visibility: a controlled study


 


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Drink your Broccoli tea benefits…have you heard this?

Looming environmental apocalypse got you down?

Keep calm. Drink broccoli. And pee your troubles away.

At least, that’s the idea behind a study published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research this week.

Scientists say imbibing tea made from broccoli sprouts can help stave off the ravages of environmental pollution. Thanks, in part, to the high levels of sulforaphane — a plant compound that has already demonstrated cancer-fighting abilities in animal tests.

Just a half cup of the beverage daily, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins and China’s Qidong Liver Cancer Institute, and you’re golden. The tea, they report, expedited bathroom breaks, most notably bidding a good riddance to a human carcinogen called benzene.

Typically found in polluted areas, benzene comes at the modern human from all quarters: burning tobacco, gas stations, detergents, car exhaust, paints and, seemingly, modernity itself.

As the body stocks up on that seemingly ubiquitous carcinogen, human cells stop working, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Benzene is associated with a wide range of cancers.
Sipping on a broccoli beverage, researchers found, upped the excretion of benzene by 61 per cent in test subjects over the course of the 12-week study. Another environmental hazard — a known lung irritant called acrolein — was also expunged from the body at a much higher-than-usual clip.

“This study points to a frugal, simple, and safe means that can be taken by individuals,” lead researcher Thomas Kensler from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health explained, “to possibly reduce some of the long-term health risks associated with air pollution.”

Although this study involved giving participants — from an industrial, smog-heavy city in China — a beverage containing freeze-dried broccoli sprout powder mixed with water, there’s no reason to think simply eating the vegetable won’t have a similar effect.

After all, it has long been established that broccoli is the crown of cruciferous creation.

By Christian Cotroneo
Original source

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Upcoming Reiki Healing for Pets Event – June 22

Reiki Crystal Healing for all pets – June 22, Sunday from 12 to 3pm

Available onsite at Bosley’s Pet Food Store on W 6th Ave, Vancouver BC.

Each healing session will be $40 for 30 minutes.

Reserve early as there are limited spots – 5.

Benefits of Reiki for Animals

Safe and Natural Healing for any Animal

  • Animal Reiki Calms Scared, Fearful Animals
  • Helps Reduce Stress, Induces Relaxation to Promote Better Healing
  • Great for Ferals, Wildlife, Rescues, Hard to Reach & Handle Animals
  • Energy flow blocked = Slows Pet’s Internal Healing Systems & Functions
  • Energy healing removes blocks – creates “optimum” self-healing
  • Animal’s energy field includes spiritual, emotional, mental & physical

You cMax_REIKI.73123600an give Reiki to animals in the following situations:

When they are ill: Reiki helps the healing process and works with any type of medical intervention.
When they are young or old: You can use Reiki on an animal of any age or situation.
When they have been through a trauma: Animals can use loving energy after they’ve experienced any type of abuse, loss, or move, or if they seem to exhibit depression or other behavioral disorder. Even if you don’t know what the problem is, you can use Reiki to help.
Anytime for a well-being balancing:  Just like humans that require periodic relaxation to bring back the OM in life, your pet can benefit from Reiki healing any time. Maintenance for a Zen way of life to let go of trapped energy to help expand that energetic space – which we sometimes forget due to stress and disruptions in life (internal or external).

Please email appointment reservations to: info@positivereiki.com

You can also submit appointment request using the form below.

I am looking forward to meeting your lovely pets!

 


 

 

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