The following article is written with arthritis in mind but its implications are equally valid for diabetes, hypoglaecemia and numerous other conditions.
by Shahriar Mazandi, owner of The Cloudesley
The conventional view of the body, as seen by allopathic medicine, is that its many cries for help such as fever or illness should be treated with synthetic substances that rid the individual of their symptoms. Chemical substances may well prove effective in suppressing these symptoms but more often than not, they fail to address the underlying issues responsible for making that individual unwell in the first instance.
In essence, what many medications actually achieve is to mask the symptoms. The illness or dis-ease which might have been in an acute phase, with pain, high temperature, vomiting, or any number of the body?s other self defense mechanisms are then limited but the body is then left with fewer resources to deal with the underlying causes that are then driven to a chronic phase, with less acute pain, etc, but with the problem sent to a deeper level into the body.
Inevitably, with time, sometimes months, sometimes years, when the body attempts to deal again with the underlying causes, dis-ease or un-wellness returns, requiring another, more often than not, stronger combination of medications. This cycle repeats itself until it progresses to a serious complaint. if not dealt with appropriately, a serious complaint will ultimately lead to fatality.
The holistic or alternative approach views the person as a whole, looking at their diet, environment, factors that may be causing stress, both physiological and psychological, their background and their immune system?s ability to self-repair.
The body tries continuously to reach a state of balance or ?homeostasis? through self repair. When this process is hindered, un-wellness can set in.
Most are already well aware that factors such as diet, nutrition and the above named are what lead to recovery, not a cocktail of pills that require yet more pills to deal with the unwanted side effects of the first batch.
There is now substantial evidence to demonstrate the efficacy of natural well being and healthy living over synthetic drugs. But, as certain food stuffs that help the body heal cannot be easily patented and offer little profit, not much incentive exists to market these over highly profitable drugs.
Today?s multinational pharmaceutical companies or ?Big Pharma? are primarily interested in protecting profits. They are, in effect, in the business of managing sickness (and profits), rather than protecting patient health.
Most modern diseases start in the gut with a ?bad? diet. A bad diet consists of acid forming foods that create ?system acidity? and take the body out of balance and out of homeostasis. System acidity is what inevitably leads to disease.
Acid forming foods include sugar, bread, refined and processed foods, soft drinks with modified corn starch syrup and similar, foods that each of us already know are not very good for us yet we sometimes like to ?treat? ourselves. When willpower is diminished and these ?treats? become routine, the road to better health becomes more difficult to negotiate.
System acidity could almost be compared to the aging process, with the gradual breakdown of internal organs and the muscular and skeletal systems. Along the way, the individual might be greeted by diabetes, cancer, arthritis or any other condition.
The remainder of this article is written with arthritis in mind but could just as easily be applied to the other complaints mentioned, as ultimately, as already stated, in the view of this researcher, most diseases start with the digestion.
According to my research, there is a strong connection between diet and and many types of arthritis. Pain in the joints, in itself, might not be arthritis but an early indicator of potential onset. A lack of particular vitamins will contribute towards onset.
By their very definition, vitamins are things needed is small doses. So, personally, I don?t recommend pills but a balanced diet rich in necessary substances.
For some, certain foods with ingredients such as gluten, lactose, yeast, sugar or nuts aggravate their condition - for such people, an elimination diet can be useful in identifying the culprit foods. Elimination diets work by cutting out all suspected groups of foods - such as dairy products and/or refined grains, for a set period and one by one re-introducing them to discover which food is a potential cause. In reality, unless you are methodical, have good discipline and are working with a qualified nutritionist, such diets can be hard to follow and the food items difficult to pinpoint.
Seeing a qualified nutritionist would be best but what can easily be done initially is to reduce intake of foods known to cause problems and to increase intake of better, natural foods. Proper regular exercise and a well balanced diet really will go a long way towards removing toxins from the body, and replenishing it.
Furthermore, it is not always correct to assume that one suffers from particular allergies. A good nutritionist should be able to do accurate mineral and allergen tests to pinpoint problem foods.
But again, when the immune and lymphatic systems are back to working well, the body is more able to tolerate boderline foods. For example, bananas, raisins, dates and grapes are very high in sugar and ought to be greatly moderated by a sufferer of hypoglycemia, but after recovery, the body will tolerate larger intake of these, which may in any case have other valuable vitamins and other ingredients beneficial for overall health.
As mentioned, refined grains are best eliminated or drastically reduced. As well as white bread, this would include sugar-loaded supermarket biscuits, other refined and highly processed starchy snacks. Foods with hydrogenated oils, such as crisps, should also be reduced as they are heavily coated with trans-fatty acids, or simply trans-fats, which cause problems and lead to system toxicity. Saturated fats, however, are less harmful and in moderation may actually be useful. These are found in milk, butter, cream, eggs and fatty meats. But moderation is the key.
Another very important reason to avoid processed foods is due to the power of one company that has genetically modified the vast majority of refined and packaged foodstuffs found on supermarket shelves. These engineered ingredients have now been shown to cause, kidney and liver damage, immune system damage and even death. This company is Monsanto. Monsanto?s rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone) is another cause for great alarm.
For non-vegetarians, cutting down on excess red meat consumption will help reduce potential problems. While protein is needed, too much red meat consumption, whilst providing protein, amino acids, zinc and iron which help balance blood-calcium, can cause body acidity. When combating arthritis, it is very important to balance the diet with alkalising foods. Dairy, meats and refined grains all acidify the body, leafy greens and vegetables help alkalise, returning the body to homeostasis. Greens will very much help fight conditions such as osteoporosis. But again, acid-alkaline balance is the key.
Vitamin A as an anti-oxidant can help self repair and is therefore influential in rheumatoid arthritis. Carotenoids such as beta-carotene can be converted by the body to Vitamin A. Carrots are a good source, as are mangoes and red peppers but broccoli is excellent. Beta-carotene supplements in high doses can actually become carcinogenic after extended use, whereas, with natural foods, the body can absorb exactly the amount needed.
B Vitamins and Folic acid help break down homocysteine levels which increases after menopause. Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) and Panthothenate (B5) occur naturally in greens - increasing intake of vegetables and salads is one of the most important steps one can take towards better health while reducing intake of sugar and grains.
Vitamin C helps repair and maintain healthy connective tissue and is essential for the production of collagen, a vital ingredient in articular cartilage, which lines the joints. Food sources rich in Vitamin C, include oranges, grapefruit, dark berries - blackberries, blueberries, blackcurrants, etc. Fresh grapefruit in particular is a good alkalising food.
As fruit goes through the digestion more quickly than grains, meats and other foods, fruit should be consumed before, not after a heavy meal and in the morning rather than evening, to avoid the possibility of it sitting in the stomach overnight where it can ferment. Also, one should eat more fruit in summer than winter, when the body metabolises it more quickly.
Dark berries have the added advantage of being rich in flavonoids which not only have anti-inflammatory properties but are rich in anti-oxidants. Strawberries, raspberries, cherries and most red berries are all other good sources for flavonoids but dark red grapes are a particularly good food. The skin of dark grapes is one of the best foods as an anti-oxidiser in fighting free radicals.
Vitamin D, known as the ?sunshine? vitamin, is extremely important in maintaining balance and repair. The best source is direct sunlight on the skin. Far too many are stricken by cancer for want of Vitamin D and lack of exposure to the sun. Sensible exposure will not only help fight depression, balance sleep disorders and the body?s natural rhythms but will help with essential Vitamin D production.
Again, when possible, it is best to avoid Vitamin D pills, as they can be toxic in the higher doses found in capsules. A, D, E and K are all fat soluble, cumulative and can be toxic in high doses. Even more problematic are the super-high dose Vitamin C tablets which can actually aggravate joint inflammation - An orange which might only have 40 mg of vitamin C, the body knows how to absorb. 3000 mg or even 1000 mg is another matter.
Sunflower seeds are also a particularly good source of Vitamin E, as are pumpkin seeds - good sprinkled on salads. Other sources of Vitamin E - almonds, hazelnuts and avocado which is a ?superfood?. Bananas and red peppers are also good. Raw or undercooked vegetables are generally better than overcooked. I steam my vegetables for between 30 seconds to 1 minute, as heat kills the beneficial enzymes quite quickly.
Cod liver oil, if taken, should be taken with care, as, in its processed form, it can severely deplete the body?s store of Vitamin E. Also, due to oceanic pollution, most modern processed cod liver oils have unacceptably high levels of mercury and PCBs. Krill oil could be tried instead.
For Omega 3, rather than fish oils, flax seed sprinkled onto porridge for breakfast is another source. Flax seed and flax oil have ALA (alpha-linolenic acid).
If taking supplements, a safer option might be pure (non-vitamin enriched) evening primrose oil which has GLA (gamma-linolenic acid). GLA and ALA are termed Essential Fatty Acids, as the body cannot manufacture them by itself and we need to consume food sources rich in them. Borage oil has twice as much GLA than evening primrose and works in much the same way, improving skin and hair, reducing inflammation and countering the damage done by trans-fats, food additives and other ingredients of the supermarket diet.
Glucosamine is another supplement that apparently maintains cartilage, tendons and other connective tissue. New research advises caution with Glucosamine.
After Aspartame, excess sugar is perhaps one of the least beneficial substances one can put into the human body, particularly white refined sugar which not only suppresses the immune system for hours after consumption but also greatly acidifies the body, thus aggravating arthritic conditions. For those with a sweet tooth, Manuka honey or blackstrap molasses in smaller quantities can be enjoyed sparingly after recovery. Better yet, would be natural sugar substitutes such as Stevia (an Aztec plant) or Xylitol, a natural sap from the xylem of trees. For the sufferer, it is important to note that sugar and sugary foods are addictive and courage may be needed to wean oneself off these food additives.
Aspertame, as found in Diet Pepsi/ Diet Coke, NutraSweet, Canderell, Sweet n? Low and a host of other low-sugar/sugar substituted supermarket products should be avoided altogether. Quite possibly, Aspartame, as a sweetener, should shoulder much responsibility for much of the ill health in the Western world. Please google ?Aspartame?
Another controversial subject is fluoride toxicity. Most people consider fluoride to be very beneficial for teeth and health. My research shows otherwise. It?s important to review who financed a particular clinical trial before accepting it?s findings. If trials are shown to be independent, all good and well;if the sponsor is shown to be a subsidiary of a major pharmaceutical company, then questions must be raised to validate its impartiality.
According to my research, with traditional fluoride toothpaste, one should make all attempts to avoid swallowing the paste while brushing. Fluoride toxicity is not only cumulative but destroys collagen. Collagen, as mentioned, is an essential component of skin, muscle and ligaments. In the longer term, fluoride accumulation can also destroy bone and thus could be a contributing factor in arthritis. On skin, it can cause premature aging. There are now many excellent fluoride-free toothpastes on the market and in health food stores.
Another important issue is excess consumption of teas and coffees which not only acidify the body but rob it of water - effectively, they dehydrate the body. The old saying that one should drink 8 glasses of water a day may have some truth to it. When cartilage is dehydrated, its gliding ability is decreased, its normal alkaline state becomes acid, sensitising the nerve endings that register pain. With sufficient water intake, acidity and toxins can be washed out. In dehydrated joints, cartilage cells die more quickly due to constant abrasive friction. The blood supply is then robbed of cartilage cells to compensate but this mechanism is short term and ineffective at maintaining cartilage regeneration to replace dying tissue.
Arthritis, in itself, may indicate broader system toxicity. Simple steps towards detoxification could include removing harmful ingredients such as parabens and sodium laurel sulphates/SLS from daily contact.
Yet another substance we all put into our bodies which is harmful in higher doses is regular table salt - sodium chloride. Himalayan crystal salt is a far healthier alternative as is has a balance of potassium, calcium and a great many other minerals the body requires in trace amounts. You can find it by typing ?Himalayan Crystal Salt? into google.
Apple cider vinegar:Not the clear supermarket variety which for all intents and purposes is nutritionally ?dead? but the traditional farm produced cloudy variety, is packed with beneficial enzymes, full of trace minerals and other important ingredients. Delicious when made with olive oil (itself a very important ingredient against arthritis) as a salad dressing, it may not work for all but pure, unadulterated apple cider vinegar could prove to be a ?miracle cure? for some conditions including arthritis. It should be evaluated by each individual for their own purposes.
The views expressed above are my own and do not constitute medical advice. Nor should they be relied on when treating illness. Always consult a qualified practitioner in the appropriate medicinal field and even more importantly, always do your own research.
For further information about conventional medication, your health and alternatives to drugs, please visit the following links:
From the website: http://www.globalresearch.ca/
Furthermore, homeopathy has recently been in the news as a fraudulent and dangerous alternative to conventional health care. If that is also your view, this article might interest you:
A further source of health-related news: http://www.naturalnews.com/
A book by Eustace Mullins: