The common cold is a viral infection that is highly contagious.
That is precisely why it can seems like everyone is sick at the same time.
A combination of factors can increase the chance of getting sick: lack of sleep, exposure to other people who are sick, poor diet, stress, and nutritional deficiencies.
Being a naturoapthic doctor in Toronto, I see my share of patients with colds throughout the winter months.
Helping them take better control of their health is part of what I do.
Preventing colds in the first place is a great start for keeping yourself and those around you at your healthiest.
Here are 5 tips I share with my patients that should help prevent you from catching that cold that's going around this season:
Hopefully I can shed some new light (or perhaps darkness) on the subject.
Restful sleep is essential for optimizing our immune response.
Aspects of our modern lifestyle can drastically disrupt our sleep.
Do you lie in bed scrolling through Instagram and Facebook?
Maybe Netflix is streaming?
The light from our devices and the electromagnetic fields they emit (not to mention the cognitive stimulus) can adversely affect our bodies and sleep patterns.
Implementing a “no phones or laptops in the bedroom rule” will improve your sleep quality.
You may be thinking- “I can't do that, my phone is my alarm clock, so it has to stay in my bedroom”.
No problem- set it to airplane mode and wifi off.
Your alarm will sound, but your phone won't be lighting up, vibrating, buzzing or searching for wifi or network signals beside your head all night.
2. Vitamin C, and other Supplements and Herbs.
The options can see overwhelming , and the average person may not know which vitamins and herbs to take, in which form or how much.
Not to mention, all supplements aren't created equally.
Seeing a naturopathic doctor for a safe and effective protocol is advisable.
However, Vitamin C is a great start- you can safely supplement with about 2000 mg daily (be sure to take it in divided doses as it can cause diarrhea if taken all at once).
You may be wondering if drinking orange juice would be a good idea when you have a cold.
Unfortunately it's not going to help, as the juice is high in sugar content and it would take 25 oranges to obtain 2000 mg of vitamin C.
Vitamin D also plays an important role in immune function.
Canadian guidelines recommend that we supplement with 1000 IU daily year round- however, many people are deficient and their MD/ND may recommend a much higher daily dosage.
I often order a vitamin D blood test when there is concern of deficiency and then dose appropriately for my patients to achieve optimal serum levels.
Zinc is another vitamin that supports our immune system- dosages will vary per individual, and also note that taking zinc supplements on an empty stomach may cause nausea.
Further supplementation and the inclusion of herbal protocols is best done under the supervision of an ND.
Avoid eating excess sugar and refined carbohydrates.
Sugar suppresses the immune system.
A study showed that healthy volunteers who ingested 100 g of sugar (equivalent to about 2 cans of Coca Cola) caused a significant decrease in the capacity of immune cells to engulf bacteria.
Good old fashioned chicken soup.
Broths keeps us warm and hydrated.
Chicken soup has been shown to have in-vitro anti-inflammatory effects aiding with the thinning of chest congestion, mucous and improving coughs.
Here is link to the study if you'd like to read more.
I recommend making your own broth from scratch, and then increasing its immune boosting properties with a tried and true combination of Chinese herbs to brew up a Change of Season Soup.
5. Reduce your exposure to germs.
Wash your hands, and wash them often.
Give sick people their space- be supportive of the utilization of sick days and working from home.
If you do get sick, reduce exposing your sickness to others- especially those who may not be able to mount adequate immune responses (the elderly, individuals with chronic illness, infants).
If you feel like you are chronically getting sick and it takes you a long time to get better, it may be a good idea to have a thorough assessment done with a naturopathic doctor.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D
To discover additional info about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: toronto naturopathic doctor
For more natural health and wellness advice, visit: goo.gl/Sr0TmJ -
2 drops Lavender
1 drop Bergamot
2 teaspoons Massage Oil.
Get your dried, organic herbs, organic essential oils, bulk spices, loose leaf organic teas and aromatherapy supplies at the place where we shop – StarWest Botanicals!
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By Dr. Mercola
Hospitals are typically thought of as places where lives are saved, but statistics show they're actually one of the most dangerous places you could possibly enter.1,2 Each day, more than 40,000 harmful and/or lethal medical errors occur, placing the patient in a worse situation than what they came in with.3
According to a 2013 study,4,5 preventable medical errors kill around 440,000 patients each year - more than 10 times the number of deaths caused by motor vehicle crashes. A 2016 study6 calculated the annual death toll to be around 250,000.
Medical Mistakes Are the Third Leading Cause of Death in the US
Either way, medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the U.S., and have been since at least 2000, when the late Dr. Barbara Starfield published her shocking conclusion that doctors kill 225,000 patients each year. Her findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.7 Ironically, Starfield ended up a statistic herself.
She died suddenly in June 2011, a death her husband attributed to the adverse effects of the blood thinner Plavix taken in combination with aspirin.8 Her death certificate, however, makes no mention of this possibility. Indeed, one of the reasons why many are still surprised by these statistics is due to fundamental flaws in the tracking of medical errors, which has shielded the reality of the situation and kept it out of the public eye.
While there are codes that capture iatrogenic causes of death, published mortality statistics do not take them into account. They only look at the condition that led the individual to seek medical treatment in the first place. As a result, even if a doctor lists medical errors in the death certificate, they are not included in the CDC's mortality statistics, and without that data, medical mistakes remain a largely hidden problem.
Hospitals Are Hotbeds for Lethal Infections
Hospitals have become particularly notorious for spreading lethal infections. According to 2014 statistics9,10 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 25 patients end up with a hospital-acquired infection, and 75,000 people per year die as a result.11
Earlier research12 has suggested as many as 1 in 10 patients will contract a nosocomial infection, defined as an infection contracted within 48 hours of hospital admission, or within three days of discharge, or within 30 days of an operation. Medicare patients appear to be at greatest risk. According to the 2011 Health Grades Hospital Quality in America Study,13 1 in 9 Medicare patients developed a hospital-acquired infection.
The video above features the Discovery Channel documentary, “Shocking Medical Mistakes: The Empowered Patient,” originally aired in 2016. In it, medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen investigates medical mistakes and missed diagnoses, including some of her own experiences as a patient, and what you can do to become an empowered patient and reduce your risk when a hospital stay is necessary.
25 Most Shocking Medical Mistakes
As mentioned in the video, medical mistakes occur every single day, and some are more serious than others. Cohen reveals 25 of the most shocking in the following countdown, and how you can protect yourself from becoming a statistic:
Safeguarding Your Care While Hospitalized
Once you're hospitalized, you're immediately at risk for medical errors, so one of the best safeguards is to have someone there with you. Dr. Andrew Saul has written an entire book on the issue of safeguarding your health while hospitalized. Frequently, you're going to be relatively debilitated, especially post-op when you're under the influence of anesthesia, and you won't have the opportunity to see the types of processes that are going on. This is particularly important for pediatric patients and the elderly.
It's important to have a personal advocate present to ask questions and take notes. For every medication given in the hospital, ask questions such as: “What is this medication? What is it for? What's the dose?” Most people, doctors and nurses included, are more apt to go through that extra step of due diligence to make sure they're getting it right if they know they'll be questioned about it.
If someone you know is scheduled for surgery, you can print out the World Health Organization's surgical safety checklist and implementation manual,20 which is part of the campaign “Safe Surgery Saves Lives.” The checklist can be downloaded free of charge here. If a loved one is in the hospital, print it out and bring it with you, as this can help you protect your family member or friend from preventable errors in care.
What is an Herb?
Any plant that has culinary, medical, cosmetic, veterinary or other use of some kind. The useful part is different with every plant, it can be the leaves, flowers, roots, barks or seeds. The plant can be a tree or shrub, a weed or an exotic flower, or one of the common group of plants known as “herbs.”
They come from all over the world, but many effective herbal remedies grow right in most people's neighborhood. There are many experts that believe the herbs best for you are the ones that grow in your general neighborhood and bioregion.
Do Herbs work for medicines?
They have been human medicine for all of our history and are still the main medicine for much of the world. Some are well researched and proven effective, others have been around for hundreds of years and stand on empirical evidence. Yes, herbs work. However, you must have the right herb for the right situation, for the right body, at the right time. Okay?
Are Herbs safe?
Most common herbs are as safe as food. However, many contain potent chemical constituents that can harm if used carelessly, and some of the most virulent of poisons come from plants. There is also the fact that for every substance in the world, there is someone who is allergic to it. So all herbs should be used with caution and respect.
What about Dosages?
This should be checked out for each herb in a reliable herb book. As a rule of thumb, however, for acute illness, less herbs are used, and they are taken frequently, as much as every couple of hours for a limited amount of days. For chronic problems, often more complicated formulas are used, and they are taken once or twice a day for a fairly long period of time.
Dosage for children and pets: divide their weight by 150 lbs and that will equal the fraction of the adult dosage.
weight of child or pet
Herbs for Health and Healing
Humankind has been blessed with plants to eat, plants for shade, plants to keep the landscape pretty, to keep the wind away from dwellings, and plants that have been used as medicines since the time before written history. The Druids, the Celts, the ancient Egyptians, and many of our ancestral cultures have used the plants around them for their medical properties.
It has been noted that the ancient Sumerians, Assyrians, and Greeks knew of the medicinal properties of herbs. It has been written that Alexander the Great made many expeditions into far-off lands for the purpose of gathering herbs from those places and bringing them back to used in local potions and medicinal remedies.
My personal interest and studies in nature and its healing components have revealed to me the importance of medicinal herbs. I am fully committed to the fact that man and nature walk hand in hand upon this planet and that our relationship with our environment is the key to personal satisfaction and health.
The works of natural healing pioneers can be found in any library. I am a proponent of their works and have tried their experiments on myself and my family. When I use herbs in medicine, I find positive results each time. I do not have to encounter any of the side effects of chemical medications.
I believe that there is an innate intuition that speaks to man of the healing properties of plants, as opposed to the ingestion of chemicals. We are, indeed, a part of the Nature of this planet, and it is my firm belief that Nature takes care of her own. We are contained in Nature, sustained by Nature, and healed by Nature. We are alive, and that spirit of life is in tune with the constant rhythms of the world in which we find ourselves.
A Brief History of Herbs
Herbs have been used for time uncounted for healing the sick and infirm. The earliest recorded herbs have been found to date back as far as 2500BC. It is certain that they were used widely even prior to that time. Even in prehistoric days, plants were sought and used for shelter, food and medicine. Some of the ancient cave etchings have shown glyphs of plant leaves and roots being used by the caveman.
There are records of the Sumerians using thyme and laurel 5,000 years ago. As far back as 2700 BC the Chinese people were known to use over 30 plants for medicinal purposes. Among these was found the herb *ma-huang*, from which ephedrine is still produced. Records of Egyptian culture, as far back as 1000 BC, tell of the common uses of many herbs and plants for food, medicine, and dyes.
These Egyptians have written of using garlic, indigo, mint, and opium. Even the Old Testament speaks of the people using wheat , rye, and barley. The ancient Greeks and Romans used herbs and other plants for cosmetics, in magical and religious ceremonies, both symbolically and realistically, and as medicine and seasonings for cooking.
It was Hippocrates who spoke of maintaining our natural *life force* through the use of herbals, fresh air, adequate rest, proper nutrition and balanced diet. A Greek physician by the name of Dioscorides wrote an extensive compendium of herbals in the first century AD. This book, called De Materia Medica, contains over 500 plants, which were listed, defined, and explained for their medicinal qualities.
In the Middle Ages, there was very little change in the concepts and treatments of medicine. At this time, the herbal information and gathered writings of the old Greek and Roman works were diligently hand-copied by monks in monasteries to preserve the information. The monks and religious leaders took on the knowledge and grew vast herb gardens for the healing arts
. In the early cultures, as healing was a common practice of the religious leader of that day, growing and use of herbs was mainly kept in the hands of the monks and ministers. In those times, it was a common awareness that all plants were beneficial to man and the earth.
Man has apparently always made use of plants, animals, and minerals in his diet and health. The plant kingdom provides the human body with the best basis for healing and for maintaining that health. Modern herbalism has developed from many and varied sources, most commonly passed down through family folklore and local tradition.
Herbalism is a very real part of our life here on earth. The cultivation and use of herbs (for many purposes) is as much a reality today as it has been since the dawn of history
It has been noted in many writings and by personal observation that the children of all cultures and walks of life seem to have a natural instinct to seek high carbohydrate foods, which provide energy and building of bodily tissues. Unspoiled Native people of all regions of the earth are known to watch for the first young sprouts of Spring.
They spend a great deal of time watching for, gathering, preparing, and eating wild tender shoots and young leaves of plants and herbs that are common to their area.
In North America, young country children can be found snacking in the wild throughout the day. They are very adept at finding the wild vegetables, like wild cabbage, sorrel, onion, and garlic. They will seek out the foods that are the healthiest for them, by some kind of innate instinct. They will chew on raw tree leaves and roots.
They know intuitively that elm leaves will relieve hunger. They will hunt for apples, grapes, and berries. These little ones, when they come home in the evening, will eat cornstalks and raw vegetable from the garden, including carrots, peas, and beans.
Young people and adults can be found chewing on certain wild flowers and ferns, such as cicily. Common weed, like dandelions and water cress are eaten by all. The people will look for and gather the wild wintergreen, peppermint, and spearmint plants. All these herbs and plants, that are growing in the wild, are beneficial to the human body.
With the advent of modern methods of food processing and chemically engineered nutrients and medicines, many natural herbal remedies have been lost and people have fallen away from their uses in food, shelter, and medicinals.
This is unfortunate, as herbs and other plants still contain the vitamins, essential oils, mucilage, alkaloids and other natural ingredients that are beneficial to the body, mind, and spirit of man.
Herbs of Today
Herbs are generally defined as any plants of a non-woody nature, which die after blooming. This definition has been expanded to encompass any of the plants of which part or whole can be used in medicinal treatments, culinary preparations (as seasonings), nutritional supplementation, or in use as a coloring or cosmetic agent.
Fresh herbals and medicinal plants can be acquired by gathering them in the wild, growing them in your own personal garden, or buying them from other herb gardeners and health food stores.
Gathering herbs is probably the most inexpensive and natural way to get them. If you are going to gather herbs, it is best to do so in the mid-afternoon, as the plants are at their peak of activity during the warmest part of the day.
However, it might be safer to grow them yourself, for then you know exactly what you are getting and what has been used on them during the growing process.
If you make the choice to purchase herbs, then it is always a good idea to do a bit of research on the people from whom you are buying.
Fresh herbs can be used as they are, as an integral part of daily diet or can be administered after they have been dried. There are several way to prepare herbs for consumption and use in medicinal remedies. When herbs are prepared by steeping then in boiling water to be drunk as a tea, they are known as an infusion. If dried herbs are simmered in hot water, they are called a decoction.
If incorporated in with other ingredients and made into a cream, they are viewed as an herbal ointment. Sometimes, a piece of gauze or cloth is soaked in an infusion or decoction and is wrapped and applied externally. This is known as an herbal compress.
If herbs are used to water to cleanse and heal externally, they are called an herbal wash. Herbal infusions and decoctions can also be used as an herbal bath for relaxation and healing.
There are a few simple rules to follow when working with herbs for food, nutritional supplements, or medicinals:
1. Always *know* that you can personally identify the herbs you are using. This is the only sure way to know they are safe for the intended preparation.
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Today, many women are choosing to have children later in life than previous generations.
Fertility treatments are a common option for those with difficulty conceiving naturally.
Creating the conditions for optimal egg quality is an important factor in achieving and maintaining a healthy pregnancy.
Women are born with a set number of oocytes (eggs) and from puberty until menopause, an egg should be released from the ovary (ovulation) each month.
The quality of the egg depends on the health of its mitochondria - the powerhouse- or energy production of the cell.
The more mitochondria the healthier the egg.
As women age, they have reduced mitochondrial activity- and therefore, reduced energy production which adversely affects the egg's viability.
Contributing Factors to Diminished Ovarian Reserve 1:
Regardless of contributing factor, there are multiple ways to support egg quality.
How To Support Egg Quality:
Reduce Oxidative Stress
Improve pelvic blood flow
Exercise increases blood flow to the core and pelvic organs, while improving sexual function and mood. Moderate exercise also reduces inflammation and oxidative stress.
Both in the diet and in supplement form, anti-oxidants have a protective effect on the ovaries and their mitochondira.
Bright coloured fruits and vegetable contain high amounts of anti-oxidants.
Supplemental anti-oxidants include: melatonin, pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), alpha-lipoid acid (ALA), and resveratrol.
Although all the aforementioned points all act to support the mitochondria, there are more nutrients that support the ovaries in different ways.
A nutrient called “inostitol” improves glucose uptake and helps ensure the mitochondria of the ovaries have optimal fuel.
Another nutrient, “carnitine”, plays a role in metabolism of fatty-acids to produce energy through a process called beta-oxidation.
This process is also essential for egg maturation.
Optimize hormones and blood sugar
Naturopaths are able to appropriately recommend diet, lifestyle and nutritional supplementation to help support egg quality and fertility.
The naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic Clinic are experienced in working with fertility and helping women achieve and maintain healthy pregnancies.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D
To get additional ways about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: naturopath doctor
Mix with 30mls of Almond oil
Get your dried, organic herbs, organic essential oils, bulk spices, loose leaf organic teas and aromatherapy supplies at the place where we shop â StarWest Botanicals!
Massage into face and neck morning and night. It has certainly made a difference to my complexion. It evens out blemishes and has refines some fine lines.
What is Aging?
Some scientists and physicians suggest that aging is a 'disease'. This is not a fair description. Aging is not a disease but part of the process of life itself!
You cannot reverse aging but you can help slow it down to an optimal level which nature intended. So, how long should we live for? This is a subject of much debate and disagreement.
Some scientists claim extraordinary timesâ¦200+ years. However, this is really in the realm of science fiction.
The position of Xtend-Life is that it is possible to live to the projected maximum human life span of 120 years. To achieve this, your life has to be well balanced! In other words, your lifestyle, your diet, the amount of exercise you do, the environment you live in and your nutrient intake have to be as close as possible to optimal.
The change from hot to cold weather has me searching for comfort foods that will provide the feeling of warmth and energy.
As a N.D I'm regularly informing patients about healthy recipes and encouraging them to create a diet around the changing seasons.
One of my favourite spice palettes during the winter season is the warm, aromatic flavours of Indian cuisine - Â likely because it's full of warming, sweet spices designed by nature to boost our metabolism, increase circulation andÂ strengthen digestion, all properties that we need to warm our bodies during the colder seasons.
Any warm recipe containing these spices will be a good choice for the upcoming winter.Â Â
Dahl is essentially made up of lentils, which are packed with protein, B vitamins, fibre and iron, making this legume a super food, especially for vegetarians/vegans.Â Â
Lentils are an amazing source of protein because it contains all but two of the amino acids (the building blocks of protein).Â Â
Lentils are high in one particular amino acid, lysine, a great remedy for viral infections, handy during cold and flu season.Â
Top this on a small bed of basmati rice, or enjoy with a few whole grain (non-GMO) crackers.Â Â
3 tablespoons coconut oil (or whatever you have)
1 medium yellow onion
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups of spinach or chopped kale
1 teaspoon of fine seasalt
1 cup dried red lentils
2 tablespoon tomato paste
4-5 cups water or veg broth
5 plum tomatoes, chopped
juice of 1 lime
1 cup lightly packed chopped fresh cilantro
2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
6 whole cloves
4 cardamom pods
2 dried red chilies (seeds removed)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Some Tips to Cooking with Spices
Yours in Health,
Dr. Tanya Lee, N.D
To discover additional information on health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: doctor of naturopathy
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You could divide the English nation over the subject of the trifle. Whether or not to add jelly (that's jello to my North American friends) to be more specific. A poll in the Guardian newspaper some time ago found that 62% said yes to jelly, and they speculated that the posher you are, the less likely you are to agree (unless you are so posh you can do whatever in the heck you want). My mother (a former cookery teacher so she knows her subject) thinks it depends on whereabouts in the country you come from. She is also very firm that Northeners (we originate from Yorkshire in the North East) never do jelly.
No matter where you come from though, a traditional trifle always contains egg custard. So I'm telling you now that there is AIP artistic licence in this recipe because mine has neither custard, nor any of the requisite sponge steeped in sherry. Now you see why I'm adding the jelly. Sorry, Mum!
This trifle takes a little longer than most of my recipes (it can be made in stages so be sure to read the tip below) but the end result is totally worth it. You get so many textures and different flavors in here that all come together so beautifully, making it a special treat that your nearest and dearest will love. I prefer to make individual trifles, howeverif you have a special glass bowl that rarely makes it out of the cabinet into the light of day, now's your chance to get it out!
Spiced English Pear Trifle
Don't forget to put your coconut milk into the fridge at least the night before, so the cream rises to the top.
The pears, jelly and crumble can all be prepared a day or two in advance and stored separately in the fridge (the crumble can also be frozen and therefore kept much longer). The coconut cream is best whipped before assembling the trifle. Serve within a couple of hours.
Annex Naturopathic Clinic is a clinic in downtown Toronto that offers integrative healthcare solutions. Toronto naturopathic practitioners Dr. Marnie Luck, ND and Dr. Tanya Lee, ND offer a variety of treatment plans using a range of modalities individualized to each patient which can complement conventional health care.
Annex Naturopathic on About.me