Yummy Apple Cider Vinegar

Image result for braggs apple cider vinegar

Raw, organic, unfiltered, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (ACV for short) may not taste yummy to you but your body thinks so.  Personally I don’t mind the taste, but to help, I incorporate 2 oz. ACV ( Braggs), 1 teaspoon raw organic honey, a slice of ginger, and 8 oz. of warm water (do not drink ACV straight).  Occasionally, I also add a few dried hibiscus flowers. I practice this every morning first thing right before I eat.  I also suggest starting with 1 teaspoon ACV first and working your way up to two table spoons.  Once there, you could also double the water and drink half in the morning and half in the evening.

Why do I do this you might ask?  It gives me more energy throughout the day and has the following known benefits:

  • ACV contains a wealth of raw enzymes and beneficial bacteria that are responsible for the majority of it health benefits.
  • It alkalizes your system, which is good for your body because many enzymes and chemical reactions work best in alkaline pH.  This is better for healing.  Studies have shown that higher acid levels in the body can lead to a lack of energy and higher incidences of infection.
  • ACV has been proven to lower your blood sugar, which is beneficial for people that are pre-diabetic or have diabetes (use caution if already on blood sugar reducing medication).
  • ACV increases your heathy HDL’s (good cholesterol) and controls your triglyceride levels.
  • It aids in the detoxification of the your liver and organs, as well as cleaning up lymph nodes allowing your body to remove toxins from your cells more efficiently. This will boost your immune system.
  • ACV helps reduce free radicals in your body that cause oxidative damage, which plays a major role in disease and aging.
  • Your digestive system stands to benefit because ACV helps your body break down food.  This helps with indigestion, bloating, gas, and even heart burn (will not help with ulcers).  When taken with meals ACV can aid in the nutrient absorption of calcium, helping prevent and treat osteoporosis.
  • Candida overgrowths can be responsible for different health issues, including poor memory, fatigue, headaches, depression, sugar cravings, and yeast infections.  Especially if your body becomes acidic from stress, eating too much processed food, sugar, refined carbohydrates, or if the good bacteria in your body is killed off by antibiotic use.  ACV being rich in raw enzymes and the fact that it helps alkalize you, can help eliminate candida from your body.
  • Studies in Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry showed participants that took ACV for 12 weeks managed to achieve declines in body weight, abdominal fat, waist circumference and triglycerides. This was backed up by research later done in Japan.

If all of this sounds too good to be true, try it out for yourself to see why ACV is one of the oldest and most useful remedies around!  Be well.

P.S. I recommend drinking your ACV mixture with a straw which will help if you have sensitive teeth or don’t like the taste (passes by most of your taste buds).

P.P.S. Substituting ACV for regular vinegar’s in salad dressing is a easy way to incorporate it into your meals.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Joshua Longo, call 916-581-9600 today!

 

The Usefulness of Turmeric

Image result for turmeric spice

Perhaps you’ve heard of the benefits of Turmeric and its main active ingredient Curcumin.  If not here’s the low down.  Turmeric is a south asian deep yellow spice that comes from the underground stem of a ginger-like plant, aka Indian saffaron.  Turmeric/Curcumin is proven to be one of the strongest natural anti-inflammatories there is.  In fact it goes up against non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDS like Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Tylenol ) evenly but with less possible side effects (e.g. liver disease, kidney disease, ulsers, increased risk of stroke etc.)  As well as being an anti-inflammatory, Turmeric increases the antioxidant capacity of your body by stimulating production of your bodies own antioxidant enzymes.  This one-two punch helps protect against oxidative damage from free radicals which can be linked to aging, cancer, heart disease, and dementia. For optimal absorption Turmeric should be taken as a supplement with bioperine (another name for peperine which increases absorption by up to 2000%). Recommended dosage is 500mg twice daily not to exceed 2000mg.  Turmeric is meant to be a daily supplement so results are usually not immediate until levels have built up in your system (up to a month).  Commonly used for inflammatory joint pain associated with acute and chronic joint injuries, osteoarthritis (wear and tear arthritis), rheumatoid arthritis, and even upset stomachs. Please read the possible side effects of turmeric below before taking it on a consistent basis.  I take Nutrigold’s Turmeric Curcumin Gold with Bioperine.

Simply Nutrition in Twelve Bridges has a great selection as well, with the bonus of being able to ask lots of questions.

More/larger human studies are needed but I find the following exciting:  Turmeric shows promise in helping with cancer by reducing angiogenesis (growth of new blood vessels to supply the cancer cells) as well as contributing to the death of certain cancers (especially of the digestive system).  It may be useful in treating Alzheimer’s (most common form of dementia) because it crosses the blood brain barrier and its anti-inflammatory effects help with oxidative damage in the brain.  Also, in the lab it has been shown to help clear protein tangles called amyloid plaques that cause dementia.  Turmeric is thought to boost Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor which is linked to improved brain function and lowers your risk of brain disease.  Your risk of heart disease can also be reduced because Turmeric improves how the endothelium works, regulating blood pressure and clotting, along with its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.  (Now of course if you are on medications for any of the above conditions please consult with a physician before taking turmeric.)  As chronic inflammation plays a role in most western diseases it is easy to see how supplementing with turmeric can be beneficial.

Image result for pictures endothelium   Image result for pictures amyloid plaques

Possible Side Effects

*Turmeric may slow blood clotting, which can be of concern if you are taking any blood thinning medications or blood thinning herbal supplements (aspirin, ibuprofen, warfarin, naproxen, angelica, clove, danshen etc.). So, it is always important to check on the side effects of over-the-counter (OTC’s) , prescription medications, and herbal supplements to make sure there aren’t any compounding/combining effects. (Why you don’t want to take pain medication/muscle relaxers with alcohol because they are all central nervous system depressants and can multiply these effects.)

*You should also stop taking turmeric two weeks before any surgeries because of its possible blood thinning qualities.

*Turmeric may lower blood sugar, which is good but might not be if you are on diabetes medications.  The two together may cause your blood sugar to fall to low,  leading to hypoglycemia.

*The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that you avoid turmeric if you have gall bladder problems.  If you have gall stones or a bile duct obstruction, turmeric may cause your condition to worsen.

*The NIH recommends that turmeric be avoided during pregnancy because it may stimulate the uterus or promote a menstrual period.  They also recommend not taking while breast feeding.

*Turmeric may cause increased stomach acid when taken with antacid medications like Tagament, Pepsid, Zantac, Nexium, Prevacid.  Although research shows that turmeric is an effective treatment for an upset stomach, it can worsen some cases of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).  Please pay attention to how turmeric effects you, and discontinue use if your reflux worsens.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Joshua Longo, call 916-581-9600 today!