Black Cohosh and the latest “Study”

There have been increasing attacks on herbal and natural therapies from various “Studies”, Non-Governmental Organizations, Government agencies, Private Foundations, etc.  I always look to see where the study came from, who sponsored it and mostly who paid for it. Even university studies have been known to be biased because the study research is paid for by an outside group with an agenda.

Usually the study claims made are based on how dangerous natural/ herbal remedies are, citing usually one reported possible side effect, but never citing how dangerous and reckless big Pharma is in their drug therapies. You never hear how many people were killed, poisoned or physically damaged from  bad or deadly side effects of “legal” drugs, especially in combinations. And you never hear that an herb has been used successfully to treat a malady since biblical times

I also have found the “Claims” against the use of herbal and natural remedies are mostly unfounded and lean toward scare tactics. The attack on the herbal supplement “Black Cohosh” is now the latest scare mongering from big Pharma.

I have used Black Cohosh for many years in my “Menopause Symptom Relief” formula and have had only positive results. I still highly recommend Black Cohosh to alleviate the symptoms of menopause and pre-menopausal symptoms.

black snakeroot

Black Cohosh

Black Cohosh, historically, has been used successfully for the treatment of asthma, cough, all respiratory ailments, including hiccups.  Because of its anti-muscle spasm qualities, Black Cohosh has been used extensively to relieve muscle cramps, spasms, myalgic pain due rheumatism and painful and irregular menses. Black Cohosh can be used to treat “Post partum soreness and used to alleviate Braxton-Hicks” premature labor contractions. Lab tests have shown

definite estrogenic activity but not enough human studies have been done.  We do know that daily use of tea or tincture raises serum Calcium levels in a natural way to combat osteoporosis. That is important to understand too, especially during pregnancy and menopausal changes.

My formula, which I make into a tincture/ Fluid Extract in an alcohol base,  also includes:

1 part Black Cohosh
1 part Licorice Root
1 part Red Raspberry leaf
1 part Dong Quai, (Angelica Sinensis)
1 part Red Clover (Flowers and leaf herb)

Dosage to be determined by the extent of symptoms present. (Usually 1 TBSP at bedtime and 1 – 2 TBS of tincture daily when symptoms present themselves

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.
Thanks, TinMan

For additional info on the latest study:
Please see the article from Jonathan Benson of Natural News debunking the latest attack on Black Cohosh.

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Sassafras

Eat the weeds

Green Dean from Eat the Weeds has some you tube video’s on wildcrafting edible wild food.

This one is on Sassafras.

Sassafras is very prevalent in New England and grows well in the deciduous forests there. (Be aware that sassafras is now banned by the FDA and also by the DEA) It is a natural, low glycemic sweetener, perfect for diabetics.  It is much better than aspartame and as good as Stevia.  Last fall I, and a good friend of mine, harvested quite a bit of sassafras bark in one short afternoon, enough for a whole year. Harvesting in the fall as the leaves are just starting to turn, we harvest the twig ends with no buds as this will not harm or damage the tree in anyway. Some use only the root bark but the twig ends also contain the same nutrients.

I use the sassafras tea as a sweetener and as a flavoring when cooking.  I make the tea by boiling the twigs for 20 minutes in 32 oz. distilled water. I then strain off the liquid, return the tea to the heat and reduce the volume by half. I keep sassafras tea for storage by adding 2 TBS honey and 1 oz. of brandy, this will allow me to keep it quite nicely for up to a year without refrigeration.  My friend Lorraine is diabetic and can’t use honey or substitute Molasses so once she makes her tea, she then proceeds to “Can” the tea in Mason jars in a hot water bath for long term storage or for use later in recipes.

Sassafras is used medicinally, usually blended with other herbs and also just as a beverage. For example, take equal parts Sassafras and Burdock root, make into a tea and use as an agent to soothe the endocrine system. This blend is very soothing to balance the Pineal, Pituitary and adrenal glands.

Sassafras is very pleasant to drink.  It was used historically to produce the flavoring in Root Beer.  For centuries, Sassafras has been used in French cooking.
I have used Sassafras mostly as a tea/ decoction. But I also have tried the National Drink from the Azores Islands as an after dinner cordial.  The Sassafras is fermented with Molasses, making it very sweet and very strong (about 100 proof).

Another interesting fun fact about Sassafras is it seems that some biting insects do NOT like the smell of Sassafras (including Mosquitoes, Lice and even Bed Bugs).  It is made into an effective mosquito repellant by bruising a sassafras leaf, rolling it tightly in your hands then leaving it rolled up and tucked behind both ears. Mosquitoes will buzz around but not light on you. Good thing to know if you’re out and about in Mosquito country. It also helps to rub the bruised leaf on all exposed skin and clothing to spread the oil from the leaves onto yourself for further protection.

For more info on Sassafras and recipe’s visit this website:  SouthernAngel

The TinMan



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Letter re: Diabetes and Pancreatitis

Dear friends,

I have been looking into herbal alternatives for the treatment of Pancreatitis. My Sister has type 1 adult onset diabetes to which she gives herself daily injections of insulin. She has trouble maintaining a decent level of Blood glucose and deals with frequent hard to control glucose spikes. Because of this erratic Rx, and the undue stress on her glandular system  she has been having periodic episodes of Pancreatitis. This s very painful and she always ends up in the hospital with IV’s and a Morphine drip to control the pain. This is NOT conducive to getting better, as this most often used method by most allopathic physicians today of “treating the symptoms instead of the problem”, almost always ends up badly as Chronic Pancreatitis. Because of the continued stress on the glandular system, Chronic Pancreatitis usually leads to Pancreatic Cancer. She’s not there yet, but I have her maintained with Olive Leaf extract (Besides being anti-biotic is specific to healing: Pancreas, Liver, Gall Bladder and Biliary syst.) I also asked her to take a daily dose of the supplement “Chlorella”, as an anti-cancer/ anti-tumor super food. Since she has been following my herbal/ natural regimen she has not had another attack and has not been back to the ER at the hospital.

My research has led me to Dr. John Christopher who, until his death,  ran the Christopher School of Natural Healing. He did extensive research in treating diabetes, pancreatitis and liver diseases herbally.

Dr. Christopher realized that the pancreas works in conjunction with the Pineal gland, the Pituitary gland and the Adrenal glands. They work secondary to the pancreas but work in conjunction with it and must be treated as well. (something modern medicine fails to address).

His premise is to treat Diabetes effectively, you must heal the pancreas first. The diabetic condition in most patients will usually diminish and most often reverse itself if there’s not been too much damage and the pancreas is still able to produce insulin.  I wholeheartedly agree. Treating the secondary glands is just as important, ( Pineal,  Adrenals, Pituitary) as treating the pancreas, thus the Diabetic condition).

His formula below was very successful.

16 parts of cedar Berry (Juniperus Monosperma)

1 part each of the following

1 pt Goldenseal to heal and reduce swelling of inflamed tissues.

1 pt Uva Ursi to cleanse the Nephrons in the kidneys / soothe the adrenals

1 pt Cayenne Pepper: Capscaicin)  as a vaso dilator

1 pt :Licorice Root: soothing/ moderates adrenal activity (very healing to the glandular syst.) (Caution here as prolonged use of Licorice may cause an increase in blood  pressure)

1 pt Mullein leaf as a hormone/ glandular modulater/ keeps hormones balanced. Mullein also relaxes smooth (Un-Striated) muscle tissue.

I recommend making a tincture/  Fluid extract using Apple Cider Vinegar as the carrier solvent by soaking all the above ingredients in the ACV for 4 – 6 weeks in a sealed jar then strained off, (decanting) reserving the liquid.

Dose would be 45 – 60 drops of the infused liquid 3X/ day or TID (Approx 1 tsp 3/ Day before meals) May be added to glass of water to dilute the ACV.

***   Now to that formula I have added some additional herbs very specific in my research to Rx Pancreas/ adrenal and glandular balance

to the above Christopher formula , please add:

1 pt Sassafrass bark

1 pt Burdock Root : these 2 herbs work synergistically to sooth the Pituitary/ Pineal glands (as in my appetite suppressant formula)

1 pt Olive leaf : Olive leaf works specific  to pancreas/ liver and biliary systems. Olive leaf is also a major Vaso-Dilator and can be used in conjunction with the Cayenne pepper or can be used in Lieu of the Cayenne as some people deem it very harsh to take internally. Also Olive leaf is an broad spectrum anti-biotic which is helpful if there are any stones involved in Gall bladder or liver.(Gall Stones will often carry bacteria from a toxic liver)

I feel this information needs to be shared.

thank You,

TinMan

Here is Dr. Christophers Legacy website:

http://www.herballegacy.com/index.html

search pancreatitis.

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Wild Yarrow: Achillea Millefolium

aka: Milfoil, Soldiers woundwort, Nose Bleed Weed, Sanguinary, Devil’s Nettle.

Growing Wild Yarrow:  This plant makes a wonderful addendum to a domestic garden in the Spring. Although now highly cultivated and available everywhere in nurseries, there is still a quaint feeling to include a wild species in a domestic garden for a feel of times past.

I have seen red and yellow varieties as ornamentals, but by far the most common is white. I think the colors are hybrids of the wild white species. Some cautions when planting as Yarrow. It will creep through its root system and will drop seeds readily in late summer, thus becoming very prolific with time.  All varieties of Yarrow have similar qualities medicinally. Choice of colors should be preferential.

It is not commonly kept as a ‘Ground Cover’ and if it should get too thick, just thin it out. But Yarrow deserves a special place in everyone’s garden. It’s a very special plant and should be treated like an old friend.

Yarrow is well known for its blood clotting properties (Hemostatic).  It can be used when used fresh/crushed and applied as a direct poultice on a wound or laceration.  It also promotes healing and new tissue growth of the damaged tissues (a Vulnerary).  Yarrow is mildly antiseptic, even somewhat antibiotic by nature and can be applied directly to a wound. Herbalists in history have used yarrow leaf rolled and inserted into the nostrils to stem bleeding from a nosebleed. Another herbalist claims when a rolled leaf of Milfoil (yarrow) is placed in the nose it promotes bleeding to stem a severe headache and lower blood pressure. So it seems it has been used in history for both reasons.

Yarrow is also an alternative blood cleanser, for example, it can be used if the initial wound was contaminated such as puncture wounds or lacerations.  It may, in fact, prevent blood poisoning from a dirty laceration. Yarrow applied this way reduces pain and swelling, because it acts as an anti-inflammatory to the affected area. Yarrow is a good choice for veterinary first aid uses on animal injuries.

Yarrow’s blood clotting ability is legend.  Throughout history Native Americans, warriors and soldiers, dating back to the Greeks, nearly 3000 years ago.  All have used Yarrow to stem blood loss from wounds and injury, hence the name “soldier’s woundwort”.  Crushed leaves in a tea can stop internal bleeding from ulcers, nasal passages, esophageal, bleeding hemorrhoids, etc.  Yarrow also contains a Digestive “Bitters” quality and is very helpful as a digestive aid, promoting bile flow and preventing Gall stones from re-occurring.  It is also very soothing to the pancreas and endocrine system. It is useful in treating the common cold as it induces sweating by opening pores (diaphoresis), cleanses the blood and reduces fevers readily especially when aspirin is contraindicated.

Yarrow is considered a pretty safe plant and reportedly even used as a wild edible (survival food), but like anything else, take care when using it and monitor its results. When taken internally the active ingredient, Thujone Oi,  produces a slight sedating and diuretic effect. Thujone relaxes smooth muscle in the body which helps prevent cramping (Menstrual and abdominal).  It is very healing to an inflamed liver (Hepatitis, Jaundice conditions) and can be used as an adjunct in liver, gall bladder tonics..

Yarrow is a good choice to include in your garden next year. Because of its delicate presence it looks good as a backdrop growing amongst the other domestic low growing flowers. Yarrow is also indispensible as a wilderness first aid plant in the wild.

Know this plant, and know where to find it in the wild.

Thanks,

The TinMan

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TinMan’s Eyesight Support Formula

I have worn eye glasses most of my adult life. My optometrist suggested in my early 20′s, I needed glasses for a near-sighted condition. I needed the ocular aid for driving and seeing things clearly in the distance. In 2004 while taking supplements and some herbal preparations for other ailments, I stumbled upon a discovery that markedly improved my eyesight. So much so, that it not only improved my night vision, it eliminated my need for eye glasses.

I found while taking these three herbal supplements for other ailments, within 3 months, my vision had actually improved.  Especially noting my night driving and vision in low light conditions had clearly and remarkably improved.

I was taking Glucosamine/ chondroitin for arthritis in my hands and knees. It wasn’t working.  I researched a supplement called H.A. (Hyaluronic Acid). It is a naturally occurring substance in the body’s synovial fluid which lubricates the joints. Reportedly, H.A. repairs damaged joints while protecting the joints from further damage due to wear and tear from work, exercise and age.  I started supplementing with H.A. in lieu of the Glucosamine/ Chondroitin which wasn’t helping me much.  H.A. is available where most supplements are sold.

I also was taking Eleuthro, (Eleuthro Senticocis), aka, Siberian Ginseng, for improved energy level. Eleuthro is an adapatagen and a modulator of metabolism. Eleuthro’s energy boosting qualities helped me stay awake on the road when I was driving a truck 1200 miles a week in Florida.

The other supplement I was already taking was Bilberry/ or Blueberry (Vaccinum Myrtilis) for its anti-oxident qualities. Blueberry is a powerful antioxidant which historically is known to repair, rebuild and improve the flexibility of small blood vessels and capillaries around the eyes, heart (coronary arteries) and also the middle ear, (Improves hearing as well). I knew too, historically, during WW2 the British RAF flyers were taking Bilberry as a jam/ marmalade/ jelly, or juice to improve their night vision when flying fighter planes at night. Taking Bilberry is documented to have improved night their vision so much that their success rate in the air against the Germans improved 10%. The British Admiralty made it mandatory for RAF pilots to take Bilberry daily.

In taking these three supplements daily for other ailments, (Arthritis, Anti-Oxident and Energy) over a period of 3 months, I noticed a marked improvement of my eyesight. So much so, I no longer needed to wear my eyeglasses. Even my night vision was remarkably improved.

The three supplements are:

H.A. (Hyaluronic Acid)

Eleuthro

Bilberry/ Blueberry

I read recently on the Dr. Mercola alternative health web site, that he had a new and improved eye support formula. It seems very similar to the supplements I was taking. I started more research and found additions to the 3 supplements I was already taking.

I now add the following to my regimen:

Ginko Biloba: Which improves degenerative conditions of the eye including aging.

Calendula:  Which is the flower petals of the Pot Marigold. The Oleo-Resin extract from the flowers provides Lutien which improves eyesight.

Tomato:  The raw, dried, powdered extract made from organic tomatoes provides Lycopene, which improves eye sight.

Kale (or Spinach): Which is very high in Vitamins A, C, and E and is a great source of Zeaxanthin which improves eye sight.

Also highly recommended by me is the supplement “Krill” Oil. Krill oil is a major source of Short Chain Essential fatty Acids, Omega 3′s and Omega 6′s. which are good for you on so many levels, eyesight being just one of them.

My new and improved formula for Eye Sight support is as follows:

H.A., (Hyaluronic Acid)

Eleuthro, (Eleuthro Senticosis) aka Siberian Ginseng

Bilberry/ Blueberry: Vaccinum Myrtylis, (Optional Black currant, as they both are a high scource of Anthacyandins)

Ginko Biloba

Calendula (Calendula officianalis)

Tomato: dried powdered extract

Kale (optional Spinach) dried powdered extract

I also include one daily capsule of “Krill Oil” Supplement.

Make fluid extract/ tincture of the above herbs.

Dose: 45 – 60 drops once or twice a day for at least 30 days. 90 days would provide a better trial.

I know how it helped me. I hope your trials will be as successful as mine.

Happy tincturing,

The TinMan

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Burdock: Arctium Lappa

 

“Burdock” (or simply Dock)

AKA,  Gobo, Batchelor Buttons, Sticky Burrs

Getting out in the spring along the trails, meadows, fields and wooded areas of new england, I would always quickly recognize this Pesty Weed as I’m sure most of you would. But to the trained eye, the benefits of this weed is remarkable. It is often overlooked as a tasty vegetable, wild survival food, and a valuable natural medicine. It is highly nutritious. The roots being high in Carbohydrates, Calcium, Magnesium, iron, copper and dietary Iodine. Burdock also contains Vitamins A, B-complex, C, E, Vitamin P for blood building, Zinc, Silicon and Inulin, which I will explain later.

Herbally, Burdock is highly prized as a blood purifier, liver detoxifier and general hepatic herb, especially when used as a warm infusion. It is highly effective in the treatment of gout. It works by removing excess “Uric Acid” from the joints and blood. Excess Uric Acid is the root cause of GOUT.  My brother has occasional attacks of gout in his knee and several daily warm infusions will dispel his symptoms in 24 – 48 hours.

Burdock has a remarkable ability to pull waste from the body’s systems, especially through the liver and biliary, (liver and Gall Bladder cleansing).  It also pulls waste through digestive tract, (colon cleansing) and especially good at pulling waste through the lymphatic system and skin. It is used to reduce swollen lymph glands. Among Herbal Practitioners, Burdock is used extensively to remedy skin problems, because of its ability to pull waste and toxins away from the body through lymph and glands.

I have used dried chopped Burdock root, blended 1:1 with Sassafras root bark for a very pleasant tea to help soothe the endocrine system and the hormone producing organs, (Pancreas, Adrenals, Thyroid, etc) Very effective in soothing the pituitary gland, (a Master gland) . When trying to lose weight, indulging in a cup of this bold flavorful tea 30 minutes before meals becomes an effective appetite supressant.

Burdock also contains “Inulin”, (similar to Insulin, but not the same).  Inulin has a dramatic effect on modulating blood sugar and can be a valuable natural tool in controlling Type 2 Diabetes with diet.  Inulin is at its highest concentrations immediately after harvesting the roots. In storing the roots, the inulin modifies itself into other forms of starches. Inulin is also found in high concentration in the roots of the Jerusalem Artichoke, another fine wild edible.

As an edible, the thick center stem of the long wavy leaves are quite tasty in the young and early season plant. They can be eaten raw as a survival food, or can be used as you would celery, chopped in any recipe.

The roots of the mature plant are actually cultivated in Japan (Gobo) as a staple, and is a pleasant starchy root vegetable. When washed, peeled, boiled, and mashed, they become a creamy, (slightly mucilaginous) side dish, rich in Carbohydrates. Fresh roots can be washed, peeled, and sliced lengthwise or julienned and put into an interesting stir fry with other vegetables such as peppers, mushrooms, Ginger spice, toasted sesame seeds, Soy Sauce or Tamari.

Burdock is a very common Herb and can easily be found wild in most of Northern U.S. and Canada. Burdock is best harvested for its roots in the fall. Leaf stems are best eaten in spring or early summer. There is also a smaller cousin of the Dock Family called Yellow Dock, or Curley Dock. Which is a little more difficult to seek out and find but it is even more concentrated in its medicinal values.

The TinMan

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Gall Bladder Attack!

  
Natural, and quick Rx for acute Gall Bladder attack 

An acute Gall Bladder attack is painful and debilitating. If left untreated, the root causes may result in permanent damage to the liver, biliary and digestive systems causing a toxic overload, or worse. An acute Gall Bladder attack can be quite capable of dropping a strong, otherwise healthy individual, right in their tracks. 

The symptoms of an acute GB attack would present sharp, sudden pain and or discomfort in the upper right abdominial quadrant. This usually occurs after eating a heavy, rich, high protien meal. Often, there is a short term history of having a lead up to an acute attack by small occurances of a passing twinge of pain after heavy meals. Most often these small reoccurring episodes are disregarded and ignored as simply a slight indigestion. If an inflammed Gall Bladder is present, the “twinges” start to become more frequent, again with a progression of intensity of symptoms, usually presenting after eating. 

A few years ago, my wife woke me at 1:00/am in the morning with a sense of urgency. “I have to go to the hospital. I think I’m having a heart attack”. I asked what was wrong and she indicated Pain in the upper right quadrant. She didn’t appear to present any cardiac symptoms other than abdominal pain. I took her vital signs, Blood Pressure and had her point to the area of discomfort which was intermittent and coming in waves. I palpated the area and she recoiled from the pressure. I knew she was having an acute GallBladder attack. 

During an acute GB attack, the pain is sudden and sharp, even palpable to the touch. Pressing on the area of the gall bladder, or the Common bile duct from the liver to the GB will cause a person to recoil from the pain. The area surrounding the tissues of the Common Bile Duct and the Gall Bladder itself will be undergoing acute inflammation. At this point, there most likely will be Gall Stones or Calculi already forming in the Gall Bladder or in the common bile duct. These “Stones” will continually grow and eventually occlude the flow of bile, and or the Gall Bladder completely if left untreated requiring surgury to remove them. 

My all natural approach to my wifes painful episode was to mix in a small glass: 

1TBS of Apple Cider Vinegar, (ACV) 

1 TBS of pure Lemon Juice 

1 TBS of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, (EVOO) 

I instructed her to drink it all down at once. Her pain subsided completely in 15 minutes. she was in bed, asleep in 30 minutes. 

The next morning she appeared fine, had no complaints of any pain. I suggested there may be some formation of Gall Stones starting, as there was some tenderness to the touch still present. She called her doctor for an appointment, which was given for 6 weeks later. He gave her instructions that if she had acute pain symptoms again that she just go right to the ER. 

I suggested that while she was waiting for her Doctors appointment, she start a daily regiment of the ACV, Lemon, and ,EVOO  dose once a day for 10 days. This would eleviate the inflammation and start to dissolve the stones. She did my treatment daily for the suggested 10 days and the pain never returned. (She never did keep the doctors appointment). 

If Gallstones are suspected and the pain persists or re-occurs with some frequency, I suggest an alternative to a longer term solution. Bacteria will also inbed themselves in Gallstones as bacteria can escape an over worked, toxin laden, or unhealthy liver. Larger stones may be involved and need to be dissolved. and this can be done naturally also, with Daily dose of 

1) Olive leaf, Tincture, dose: 45 – 60 drops of tincture, 3X /day (TID) (Olive leaf is an effective Anti-Inflammatory, Anti-Hepatic AND a broad spectrum Anti-Biotic, both Gram Positive AND Gram Negative). 

2) Gravel Root, (aka Joe Pye weed, Purple Boneset), Tincture, Dose: 45 – 60 drops 3 X /day (TID) 

Tinctures to be taken with water after meals. 

These tinctures have proven to be very helpful in dissolving stones naturally. 

During this time a daily regimen of a wellness tonic is suggested, including Dandelion root/ leaf and flower, Milk thistle, Schizandra Berries, Oregon Grape Root, to help nourish and promote a healthy liver.. 

My suggestion is to tincture a blend of these dried herbs in a base of Apple Cider Vinegar, strained after 4-6 weeks. Then tincture taken 1 TBS, up to 1 oz / per day, diluted in water, taken once daily for 30 days. 

The TinMan

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TinMan’s Joint Remedy

Pain: Chronic Muscular/ Skeletal

There is a huge difference between acute, (sudden onset) pain and “Chronic Pain”. There is also a huge difference in the way treatment is applied. Acute pain can usually be resolved with temporary powerful pain killing drugs, the application of ice/ cold alternating with Heat on an effected area, or elevation or total rest including immobilization of a body part such as a splint.

Chronic Pain, however, requires a different approach to treatment. Again Pain medications can help. But in My Humble Opinion, (MHO), pain pills usually complicate matters with serious side effects, Unintended Consequences, (like addiction) or some other systemic involvement like kidney failure, liver damage, or respiratory impairment, making the original injury seem secondary.

I never understood the immediate response by physicians, to treat a symptom and not the problem. Popping pills has become a national pastime. Most cases of Chronic Pain revolve around inflammation of surrounding tissues. If these tissues are not permanently damaged, they eventually will be if the problem isn’t addressed and not by just relieving the symptom, (pain).

Here is a typical example. For years I drove truck, often driving 1200 miles a week. through age and being a bit overweight, my spinal column suffered with a natural degenerative disk problem. Often lifting objects, machinery and boxes, resulting in muscle strain contributed greatly to the problem. Over the years, this line of work took it’s collective toll on my back, resulting in Sciatica. Sciatic pain is caused from pressure/ irritation on this rather large nerve where it passes through the vertebra in the lower back, and travels down the leg. This burning pain is is debilitating to say the least. But the pain is exacerbated by inflammation and subsequent swelling of the surrounding tissues.

Theres not a whole lot that can be done to correct the degenerated disk causing the narrowing and pressure on this nerve, short of major back surgery. And I have found that the surgeons scalpel rarely corrects the problem (again, unintended consequences). 

 I theorize I can relieve the inflammation on the surrounding tissue to to diminish the pain significantly by using anti-inflammatory agents. This is where the allopathic doctor prescribes NSAIDS, ie: Ibuprofin, Naproxin Sodium, Motrin, Acetameniphen, etc. My approach was to research naturally occurring compounds that act the same way, but do not have to be delivered systemically or involve the very nasty side effects of long term NSAID use. I rationalized that an all natural, botanical based, topical anti-inflammatory was the answer. Apply a healing Balm directly over the effected or injured area and massage the pain away.

I researched and developed such a balm and have tested it (on myself and now others) with astonishing early results. The herbal oils are absorbed directly over the injured area, not having to ingest them through the digestive tract, then through the circulatory system. The inflammation recedes dramatically. Within 30 minutes, I could feel the pain melting away.

I have tried this on various sources of chronic pain and it shows varying, but very positive results. The joint remedy even worked on damaged connective tissue injuries, Torn Rotator Cuff, Carpal Tunnel, Tennis Elbow, Osteo-Arthritis in hands and feet, Sore knees where there was previous ligament/ tendon damage from injury. It even worked on chronic hip pain.

In severely debilitating cases, I also utilize a tincture form of this blend to take as a daily supplemental fluid extract. The two similar compounds work together as an effective adjunct to deminish the pain

The Balm consists of some old, even ancient herbal compounds, so they are tried and true. But what became a Blinding Flash of the Obvious, (BFO), was the synergistic combination of these herbs seems to pull together to work remarkably well, sort of the whole being stronger than the individual parts.

The healing Balm, which I call “TinMan’s Joint Remedy”  is a carefully formulated blend of the following herbal compounds:

Comfrey, (Symphytum Officianale)

Sarsaparilla, (Aralia Nudicaulis)

Devils Claw, (Harpogophytum Procumbens)

Plantain, (Plantago Major)

White Pine Bark, (Pinus Strobus

Ginger Root, ( Zingiber Officianale) , (Freshly grated)

Oil of Wintergreen, (Gaultheria Procumbens) Wintergreen, besides having a pleasant aroma, enhances absorption and penetration to deep tissues.

All blended in a base of Organic Olive oil (Olive oil is a natural anti-inflammatory in it’s own right).

Bees Wax to form a consistency to apply the blend evenly.

To find out more, contact me, The TinMan through this blog or my Email

Below, is a link to article written by the reknowned Dr. Julian Whitaker who agrees that popping pills is not the only answer to chronic joint pain. There are effective and healthier natural alternatives to a debilitating, painful experience.

Below is the link to Dr Whitaker’s article

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=200205

The TinMan

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Purslane: Portulaca Oleracea

Today, I’d like to write about Purslane, also known by farm folk as “Pigweed”, (cause Piggy’s just love it).  It’s one of the earlier wild herbs, (wild edible) found in the spring, but thrives through early and mid-summer. By most people, it’s considered a nuisance weed that pops up everywhere in late spring, (Albeit it is now being cultivated and sold in nursery’s as an ornamental). It grows well in the wild in disturbed soils, and can be found handily, growing mostly in old garden plots, meadows fields and along trails, stone walls and fence rows.

It’s a small inconspicuous looking weed that grows to about 6 inches to a foot tall, sometimes lying down to assume a creeping ivy like plant. It’s dark green, wedge shaped leaves are thick and succulent as they are rich in juice and nutrition high in Vitamin C and trace minerals. According to Simopoulous Portulaca/ Purslane contains the highest amounts of Omega 3 fatty acids than any other leafy green vegetable tested to date.  Chickens are often fed Purslane to produce eggs lower in cholesterol.

Portulaca: courtesy of Harvard University Herbaria

The entire plant, (including the stems and roots) can be used both as a wild edible and as a medicinal plant. Tasting tangy with a slight sour taste similar to sorrel, (often mixed with Sorrel as a pot herb to make the French Sorrel Soup known as Bonne Femme). Purslane can be used raw in salads or just to chew on right out of the garden or on the trail.  Purslane can also be cooked and use as you would spinach.

Medicinally this little gem has the ability to pull “heat” from the body.  On a hot day blend some fresh picked Purslane, stems and all, with a stalk of celery and an apple in a juicer for a very refreshing and highly nutritious drink to allay thirst quicker than ‘Lemonade’.  Just one Purslane leaf crushed or bruised and placed under your tongue can relieve thirst while hiking or working in the garden or yard. During bouts of heat exhaustion a poultice of macerated leaves and stems placed over the eyes and temples will pull heat out of the body making recovery quicker.

As long as you have your juicer out, try making a juice of Purslane and Strawberries, even Wild Strawberries.   It can also be used as a mouthwash or gargle and will help fasten loose teeth.  Take a swallow and swish briskly in the mouth then carefully spit, trying not to dislodge the loose tooth further. A few applications will help ‘set’ the loose tooth.

Purslane, (including leaves, stems and roots) when cooked down and strained through a sieve or colander, then adding sugar and honey to the liquid to make a simple syrup to taste can be used as a very effective cough syrup.  Native Americans have often used Purslane for dry non productive coughs.

In ancient times, Purslane was used as an anti-magick herb.  It was strewn in a circle around a bed to afford protection against evil spirits and spells. It was also placed on window sills and in doorways to protect against Lightening striking.

Keep an eye out for this little inconspicuous and little known wild weed as its healthful value is little appreciated now.

TinMan

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Niacin aka Vitamin B3 for Cholesterol Control

I was mentioning to a friend the other day that the best way to regulate cholesterol in your blood is through Niacin, aka Vitamin B3.

Your body needs Cholesterol, but as with all things in life, sometimes too much is a bad thing.  Niacin regulates cholesterol.  That’s what it does. That’s its job.  Niacin raises the HDL (Good) cholesterol and reduces the LDL (Bad) Cholesterol.  Fat free regulated diets are not the answer to controlling your blood cholesterol levels.

You need good cholesterol for proper brain function. It also helps protect you from stroke, heart disease and nerve damage. Good cholesterol is also necessary for proper metabolic function.  One of the side effects of Niacin is a strong is a warm, tingling flushed feeling in the face, neck and ears.  Try Timed Release Niacin Capsules to help bring down your LDL for about 4 -6 weeks. The timed-release helps prevent those hot flashes or body flushing. 

If you need further supplementation, I recommend that you take one of the following daily:  1 tsp Cinnamon (In your tea/ coffee, on toast, etc.); Garlic (with parsley) as tolerated; or Apple Cider Vinegar (1 shot glass a day mixed with juice or water is fine). These natural, healthful ingredients included in your daily routine will help reduce problems surrounding High Blood Cholesterol levels and the diseases they can bring about.  Another natural alternative is to include Flax seeds in your daily diet, (I take mine as 1 TBSP Flax Seeds with yogurt every day for lunch).  Flax seeds are loaded with Lecithin, Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids and will drop your bad cholesterol over time.  Flax Seeds/Flax Oil and Cultured Yogurt also helps to maintain healthy intestinal flora and good digestive health.  So they will do double duty for you if included in your everyday regimen.

Little subtle changes in the daily diet can make a big difference for you to get the hell off those nasty Statin Drugs.  For more info read the following article by Keri Knox, RN.

The TinMan

belfirebotanicals@yahoo.com

*article reprinted with permission of Ms. Knox*

Niacin Increases Good Cholesterol

by Kerri Knox, RN, citizen journalist (Natural News)

In the past decade doctors have declared an all out war on the high cholesterol levels by prescribing cholesterol lowering ‘statin’ drugs that have dubious safety records. What’s not talked about very much, though, is that humans actually NEED cholesterol for good health. Interestingly, there are different types of cholesterol: ‘bad’ cholesterol that may be an overall contributor to the arterial plaque that doctors are so concerned about, and ‘good’ cholesterol that is an overall contributor to good health. What’s talked about even LESS is the fact that niacin, one of the B complex vitamins, is well known as THE most effective way to improve cholesterol levels by INCREASING cholesterol levels- in a good way.

High Density Lipoproteins, known as HDL’s, are the healthy cholesterol particles that are measured as a part of the total cholesterol level. While doctors generally say that high cholesterol levels are ‘bad’, nearly all health professionals and cholesterol researchers agree that high levels of HDL’s are actually quite good and tend to be protective against heart disease, stroke and other chronic illnesses. This fact is not discussed much by the media or by doctors, however, because there is no financial incentive to educate people about HDL cholesterol when the only good ways to raise levels is with diet, exercise- and niacin.

Niacin, also called nicotinic acid and Vitamin B3, is an extremely common and inexpensive over-the-counter B vitamin that is present in small amounts in nearly all multivitamin preparations. In higher doses, however, niacin has been shown to be a formidable weapon in the war to RAISE the right kind of cholesterol. It’s so effective that, in a rare harmony of opinion about a natural substance, the Mayo Clinic, the ‘New England Journal of Medicine’ and the ‘Atherosclerosis Journal’ all agree that niacin is, “the most effective drug available for raising HDL cholesterol.”

That isn’t niacin’s only health benefit; it’s also been shown to reduce ‘bad’ cholesterol, thin the blood and improve blood flow to the heart: each of which independently has been shown to be an important part of preventing and even treating heart disease. The short acting over-the-counter supplemental niacin, however, has one significant flaw- while extremely safe, it creates an uncomfortable, but harmless and temporary problem of skin flushing and itching. In answer to this inherent problem with niacin, Big Pharma created a long-acting niacin preparation called Niaspan that, while greatly decreasing the flushing that occurs, actually increases the incidence of liver problems. With a slap in the face to the supplement industry, the less safe drug Niaspan is allowed to make a ‘Qualified Health Claim’ for reducing cholesterol while the supplement industry is NOT allowed to make the same claim about safer over-the-counter niacin! In any case, even though your doctor isn’t likely to tell you about it, niacin is an incredibly safe over-the-counter supplement that has an amazing ability to increase the good HDL cholesterol levels that we all need for good health- just watch out for the flushing.

Resources

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/ni…
http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content…
http://www.side-effects-site.com/ni…
http://www.atherosclerosis-journal….

About the author

Kerri Knox, RN is a Registered Nurse and Functional Medicine Practitioner.
With over 14 years of experience in health care, she has the unique perspective of being solidly grounded in Conventional Medicine and being well versed in Alternative Medicine.
She can help you to to find and repair the UNDERLYING CAUSES of illness using cutting edge in home lab testing that finds nutritional deficiencies, hidden infections and chemical and metal toxicities that contribute to ill health.
She can be reached through her websites at:
Easy Immune System Health.com
Side Effects Site

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