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CCH Health Review

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Information About Individual Dietary Supplements

Acetyl-L-Carnitine
Acidophilus & Other Good Intestinal Bacteria
Anti-Inflammatory Formula
Anti-Microbial Formula
Anti-Viral Formula
Black Cohosh
Bone Health Formula
Coleus
CoQ10
Energy Support Formula
Feverfew
Fish Oil
Garlic
Glucosamine Sulfate
Glucosamine and Chondroitin for Arthritis
Green Tea
Gymnema
Hawthorn
Immune Support Formula
Ipriflavone
Joint Health Botanicals
Multi-Vitamins and Minerals
Pygeum
Saw Palmetto
Soy Isoflavones

Acetyl-L-Carnitine

Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC) is an esterified form of L-carnitine, synthesized largely in the kidneys, liver, heart and brain. It is involved in functions such the metabolism of food into energy, cellular energy production, and removal of toxic accumulations of fatty acids from mitochondria. The acetyl group that is part of ALC contributes to the production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is required for mental function.

Numerous clinical trials have evaluated this nutrient’s effects on a broad range of conditions in humans and animals.

How Does It Work?

Acetyl L carnitine has numerous biochemical and physiologic effects which may contribute to the salutary effects observed in a variety of medical conditions. These include:

Clinical Applications

Acetyl-l-carnitine has been researched or used for a wide variety of health problems.

Click here for more information on the clinical applications of acetyl-l-carnitine.

Dosage

Acetyl-l-carnitine levels appear to decrease with advancing age. Therefore, the older you are, the greater your possible need.

There is no specific dosage, although most research involving acetyl-L-carnitine has used 500 mg three times per day, or more in some cases.

Side Effects

In the vast majority of clinical trials, ALC was well tolerated and without side effects, even with administration over 1 year. However, side effects such as body odor, increased appetite, rash, agitation, nausea and vomiting have been reported.

Drug Interactions

Didanosine increases the need for acetyl-l-carnitine.

To order acetyl-l-carnitine by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Acidophilus

Acidophilus is a natural antibiotic, produces B vitamins, improves digestion, and reduces risk of colon cancer. Antibiotic therapy will destroy it. That's why you need a probiotic supplement.

Billions of bacteria live in your intestines. Some of them build your health while others tear it down. One of the most important bacteria in the beneficial category is Lactobacillus acidophilus.

Why Acidophilus Is Essential to Your Health

Lactobacillus acidophilus is a vital key to your good health for several reasons:

Antibiotics and Acidophilus. Nearly all of us have taken antibiotics at one time or another. But we almost never think about what those antibiotics do to our intestines. If you have an ear infection (for example), your MD might prescribe an antibiotic. Before the antibiotic gets to the infected ear, it is swallowed and has to pass through the GI tract before absorption into the bloodstream.

In a healthy GI tract, there is a dynamic balance between all of the resident organisms, which include bacteria and yeasts. Many of these organisms cling to the walls of your gut, where they compete for "real estate". As the antibiotic passes through, it kills all bacteria, both the bad and the good. However, antibiotics do not kill yeasts, including the Candida yeast. A lot of gut wall "real estate" is freed up, because all of the bacteria are dead and gone. All that remains are the yeasts, which then wildly proliferate to occupy the free space.

This is why so many people get yeast infections when they take antibiotics. Therefore, it is imperative that you take extra acidophilus while on antibiotic therapy, and for two weeks afterwards.

When you take acidophilus during antibiotic therapy, take it as far away from the antibiotic as possible.

Vaginal Yeast Infection. Acidophilus is antagonistic to Candida and other yeasts. Acidophilus is also toxic to Gardenerella, a common cause of vaginal bacterial infection.

A vaginal douche twice a day with a solution containing acidophilus is indicated if you have any kind of vaginal infection, especially a yeast infection. Even if you do not douche, just consuming acidophilus will help to some extent. Your physician will provide you with the specific protocol you need for a vaginal infection.

Urinary Tract Infections. A problem with antibiotic therapy for urinary tract infections is that protective bacteria are destroyed, leading to recurrent infections. Vaginal suppositories of acidophilus help to prevent recurring urinary tract infections.

Diarrhea. Acidophilus is important for preventing or treating antibiotic-induced diarrhea. Acidophilus also helps to prevent diarrhea resulting from radiation therapy to the GI tract.

Travel to foreign countries is often accompanied by diarrhea when you're exposed to different foods or an environment that contains pathogenic organisms. Acidophilus has been shown to reduce traveler's diarrhea.

Cancer. Acidophilus inhibits bacterial enzymes associated with the formation of cancer-causing compounds in the GI tract, thus reducing the risk of colon cancer. It also appears to reduce the recurrence of bladder cancer.

Infant Thrush. Thrush is a yeast infection in the mouth. It can be effectively treated with acidophilus. If your baby is infected and you are breast feeding, you can "paint" your nipples with a acidophilus. If your baby is feeding from a bottle or eating food, consult with your physician for instructions.

Click here to find out more about your baby and intestinal bacteria.

Any Intestinal Disorder. Acidophilus is helpful for virtually any intestinal problem, including microbial overgrowth, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, Crohn's disease, or diarrhea.

Dosage

The dosage of an acidophilus supplement is based on the number of live organisms. Consumption of one to ten billion organisms is thought to be an effective daily dosage. Acidophilus is quite safe to take in larger doses, although some may experience mild GI disturbances. A lower dose may not be enough to colonize the GI tract. Acidophilus is safe to take at any dose. Consult with your physician for the appropriate dosage for your specific condition.

What's the Difference Between an Acidophilus Supplement and Yogurt?

There may be some acidophilus in fermented milk products such as yogurt and kefir. However, most commercial yogurts are made with Lactobacillus bulgaricus or Streptococcus thermophilus. Although these two organisms possess some health benefits, they will not colonize in your intestines.

On the other hand, the highest quality supplements are made with "super strains" of Lactobacillus acidophilus. These strains are designed for maximum clinical effectiveness. They also do not die as easily and are more likely to survive the digestive process in your stomach. So if you are looking for positive results, an acidophilus supplement is a better choice than yogurt.

Yogurt is still mildly beneficial, but make sure that it is unsweetened, because sweetening agents may destroy beneficial bacteria.

Acidophilus Product Quality

Product quality is a crucial consideration when choosing an acidophilus product:

Product labeling can be misleading, and you have no direct way of knowing whether the product will be effective. Therefore, please follow the product recommendations given to you by your physician.

After purchasing your acidophilus product, it's prudent to keep it in your refrigerator in order to ensure the organisms stay alive as long as possible.

Other Beneficial Organisms

There are other beneficial bacteria that are sold as dietary supplements. These "good" bacteria are called probiotics. The most important probiotic in this group is Bifidobacterium bifidum. Bifidus colonizes in a baby's intestines as a result of breastfeeding. It should be present in any healthy intestine. However, antibiotic therapy kills bifidus.

Bifidus has health-giving properties that are very similar to acidophilus. It has a pronounced inhibitory effect on pathogenic bacteria and yeasts. Therefore, your physician may recommend that you take both acidophilus and bifidus.

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Natural Anti-Inflammation Herbs

There are a number of herbs (botanicals) that work synergistically to reduce chronic inflammation such as rheumatoid arthritis, or acute traumatic inflammation, such as sports injuries. These botanicals are general anti-inflammatories.

Boswellia serrata

Bromelain

Curcumin (turmeric)

Quercetin

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 or 3 capsules 3-4 times daily.

To order our natural anti-inflammatory botanical formula ("BCQ") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Natural Anti-Bacterial, Anti-Viral, and Anti-Fungus Agents

There are a number of herbs, minerals and vitamins that work synergistically to support your immune system and thus help you to prevent or treat bacterial, viral, or fungal infections.

Goldthread (Coptis chinensis)

Forsythia suspensa

Honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica)

Garlic (Allium sativum)

Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha)

Echinacea species (Coneflower)

Bioflavonoids

Zinc

Vitamin A

Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 or 3 capsules 3-4 times daily.

To order our natural anti-microbial agents ("Herbal Biotic") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Natural Anti-Viral Agents for Virus Infections

There are a number of herbs and other natural substances that inhibit viruses and help to prevent or treat colds, flu, and any other viral infections.

Elderberry (Sambacus nigra)

Scullcap (Scutellaria balcalensis)

Propolis

Astragalus membranaceus

Isatis tinctoria

Goldthread (Coptis chinensis)

St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)

Zinc

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 or 3 capsules 3 to 4 times a day.

To order our natural anti-viral agents ("ViraCon") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Black Cohosh

Black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa) is a native American perennial growing to 8 feet in height. It has irregular leaflets with jagged edges and long pedunculated drooping racemes of white flowers. The extract from the rhizome and root has been widely used for centuries by native Americans, and in Europe since 1956.

Basic Uses

Clinical Applications

Black Cohosh and Menopause

Premenstrual syndrome

Breast cancer prevention

How Does Black Cohosh Work?

Recommended Dosage of Black Cohosh

The recommended dosage of black cohosh is:

Black Cohosh Side Effects

Black Cohosh Studies

  1. Dixon-Shanies D and Shaikh N, Growth inhibition of human breast cancer cells by herbs and phytoestrogens. Oncol Rep 1999 Nov-Dec;6(6):1383-7.
  2. Duker EM, et al, Effects of extracts from Cimicifuga racemosa on gonadotropin release in menopausal women and ovariectomized rats. Planta Med 1991 Oct;57(5):420-4.
  3. Gruenwald J, et al, eds. PDR for Herbal Medicines. Montvale, NJ: Medical Economics Co., 1998.
  4. Hardy ML, Herbs of special interest to women. J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash) 2000 Mar-Apr;40(2):234-42; quiz 327-9.
  5. Kruse SO, et al, Fukiic and piscidic acid esters from the rhizome of Cimicifuga racemosa and the in vitro estrogenic activity of fukinolic acid. Planta Med 1999 Dec;65(8):763-4.
  6. Lehmann-Willenbrock E and Riedel HH, Clinical and endocrinologic studies of the treatment of ovarian insufficiency manifestations following hysterectomy with intact adnexa. Zentralbl Gynakol 1988;110(10):611-8.
  7. Lieberman S, A review of the effectiveness of Cimicifuga racemosa (black cohosh) for the symptoms of menopause. J Womens Health 1998 Jun;7(5):525-9.
  8. Liske E, Therapeutic efficacy and safety of Cimicifuga racemosa for gynecologic disorders. Adv Ther 1998 Jan-Feb;15(1):45-53.

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Osteoporosis - Natural Bone Health Agents

There are a number of natural substances in Osteo Nutrients that are helpful in the prevention or treatment of osteoporosis.

Calcium | Magnesium | Horsetail | Lysine | Vitamin D

Calcium

Magnesium

Horsetail (Equisetum arvense)

Lysine

Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol)

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Coleus

Coleus forskohlii is a perennial member of the mint family, which originated in the lower elevations of India. It is now grown around the world as an ornamental plant. The root is used medicinally. It has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine to treat heart and lung diseases, intestinal spasms, insomnia, and convulsions. The active ingredient is forskolin.

Clinical Applications

Coleus is indicated for a wide variety of conditions, including:

The clinical applications of coleus forskohlii are:

How the Forskolin in Coleus Works

Forskolin has demonstrated the ability to:

Dosage

A standardized extract is the preferred form to use. Take sufficient extract to provide 9mg of forskolin, 2 to 3 times a day.

Feverfew Side Effects and Drug Interactions

To order coleus forskohlii by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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CoQ10 - Coenzyme Q10

Coenzyme Q10 is a vitamin-like nutrient that is vital to the production of energy. As one of the electron carriers in the electron transport system, it helps cells utilize oxygen. If you have ever wondered how we get energy from food, or why we have to breathe oxygen, it is because the body strips food of electrons and transports them to an electron acceptor, which is oxygen. CoQ10 facilitates this process, providing one of the “spark plugs” for the creation of cellular energy.

Numerous therapeutic effects of coenzyme Q10 have been reported, most notably in areas where oxygen transport is critical, for instance heart disease, aging and periodontal disease. Since an adequate supply of oxygen is necessary for tissue repair and immune function, many applications have been reported in these areas. Additionally, Co Q10 has therapeutic potential because of its antioxidant properties (fights damaging free radicals). CoQ10 has a wide variety of functions and applications in the body.

Clinical Applications

Because it is a component of energy production in all cells, CoQ10 has many possible clinical applications, including (but not limited to):

Click here to get more details about the clinical applications of CoQ10

How CoQ10 Works

Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency States

Dietary Sources of CoQ10

Co Q10 Dosage

Adult levels of supplementation are usually 30-90 mg per day, although people with specific health conditions may supplement with higher levels (with the involvement of a physician).

Most of the research on heart conditions has used 90–150 mg of Co Q10 per day. Congestive heart failure may require as much as 2 mg / kg body weight 4 times daily.

People with cancer who consider taking much higher amounts should discuss this issue with a doctor before supplementing. There are several anecdotal reports of large amounts of Co Q 10 resulting in improvements in certain types of cancer. For example, breast cancer: might take up to 300 to 400 mg 4 times daily. Consult with one of our physicians if you have a health condition that could be helped by CoenzymeQ10.

CoQ10 is best taken with meals to improve absorption.

CoQ10 Side Effects

CoenzymeQ10 is safe and well tolerated, with no significant side effects. No studies have been done to document safety during pregnancy and lactation.

Coenzyme Q10 Drug Interactions

Ubiquinone causes no known adverse interactions with any pharmaceutical or nutrient. Activity of carnitine and pantethine may be enhanced by CoQ10.

Coenzyme Q10 supplementation may mitigate some of the adverse effects of:

Co-enzymeQ10 may reduce the effect of warfarin. If you taking warfarin, take CoQ10 only under the direction of your doctor.

To order Coenzyme Q10 by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Energy-Supportive Non-Stimulatory Botanicals & Herbs

There are a number of herbs (botanicals) that work synergistically to reduce fatigue and give you more energy and stamina. They may also help you with your sex drive, and assist in recovery from illness. These herbs also may enhance your mental concentration.

Panax quinquefolium (American Ginseng)

Schisandra chinensis (Wu Wei Zi)

Polygonum multiforum (Soloman's Seal, He Shou Wu)

Astragalus membranaceus (Huang Se)

Atractylodes lancea (Cang Zhu)

Glycyrrhiza glabra (Licorice, Gan Cao)

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 or 3 capsules once or twice daily, ideally in between meals.

To order our non-stimulatory energy-supportive botanical formula ("Energy Plus") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Feverfew

Feverfew (tanacetum parthenium) is an aromatic perennial with yellow-green divided leaves. It is indigenous to southeastern Europe and transplanted to North America and Australia.

The common name “feverfew” is a corruption of the medical herbology term “febrifuge,” generally applied to plants that have the property of reducing the intensity of a fever. It has been used for reducing fevers and other inflammatory conditions since antiquity. Today, it is used primarily for migraine headache prevention, and to relieve fever and inflammation.

Clinical Applications

How Feverfew Works

Dosage

Recommended dosage is 120-240 mg 2-4 times day as an anti-inflammatory. For migraine prophylaxis, allow sufficient feverfew extract to provide 0.25-0.5 mg of parthenolide, taken twice daily.

Feverfew Side Effects and Drug Interactions

To order feverfew by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Fish Oil

Fish oil may be an important addition to your diet.

Studies have shown that there is a common predisposing factor for a number of chronic diseases including obesity, diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery disease and stroke, breast, prostate and colon cancer, depression, bipolar disorder, attention deficit disorder, cognitive dysfunction and Alzheimer’s disease.

This common causative factor may be the amount of essential fatty acids (EFAs) in our diet. Research suggests that we may be able to dramatically reduce the incidence and severity of many diseases by simply changing the type of essential fats we consume.

The most important forms of fats are essential fatty acids, or EFAs. They are "essential" because you must have them for life, and your body cannot manufacture them. You must obtain them from your diet.

EFAs serve as a highly efficient source of energy and as the primary component of cell membranes and hormones. Deficiencies in EFAs are associated with abnormal development and health problems involving the nervous, cardiovascular, and immune systems.

The two most important EFAs in human health are omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. The typical American consumes too much omega-6 sand not enough omega-3 fatty acids. Fish oil contains high levels of omega 3 fatty acids.

Omega 3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory whereas some other fatty acids are pro-inflammatory. For example, arachadonic fatty acid is pro-inflammatory. Arachidonic acid dominates the average diet (meat and dairy), and without omega 3 fatty acids, such as fish oil, this balance tips in favor of inflammation, pain, and blood vessel constriction.

What Is Fish Oil Good for?

We have a substantial number of studies on file that indicate fish oil may be helpful in any of these conditions:

What Are Good Dietary Sources of Fish Oil?

Wild, cold-water ocean fish are especially rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Good dietary sources of fish oil are: herring, cod liver, salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies, black cod and albacore tuna.

Fish Oil Supplements

If your diet is not rich in cold-water ocean fish, you may need to take a fish oil supplement.

You have two basic choices: cod liver oil, or ultra-pure fish oil (EPA/DHA) capsules.

Cod liver oil. Cod liver oil contains high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids. Cod liver oil is especially high in the omega-3 fatty acids docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Cod liver oil also contains a significant amount of vitamins A and D. On average, 20 milliliters of cod liver oil contains 1.8 grams EPA, 2.2 grams DHA, 15,000 IU vitamin A, and 1,500 IU vitamin D.

Cod liver oil can have a fishy taste and might cause belching, nosebleeds, halitosis, or heartburn in some people. Gastrointestinal side effects can be minimized if cod liver oil is taken with meals and if doses are started low and gradually increased.

Ultra-pure EPA/DHA fish oil capsules. People who are concerned about their caloric intake may prefer to take EPA/DHA capsules, which has the same benefit as cod liver oil, but is much more concentrated and has far fewer fat calories. Moreover, if fish oil is disagreeable to you, you can take less of it and get the same effect by taking EPA/DHA capsules.

EPA/DHA capsules also do not contain vitamins A and D, which may be toxic in high doses for some people.

How Much Fish Oil Should You Take?

The amount of fish oil you need depends on your diet and health status. Please consult with one of our physicians about the amount that is best for you.

Cod liver oil. In general, between 20-30 milliliters of cod liver oil may be used.

EPA/DHA capsules. In general, 3-12 grams of EPA/DHA capsules may be taken up to four times a day, depending on your condition and body size.

Fish Oil Toxicity and Drug Interactions

Any unsaturated oil, including fish oil, can become rancid if exposed to heat, light or oxygen. Rancid oils are very unhealthy because they contain free radical molecules that damage your cells. To prevent possible free radical damage, you should also take an antioxidant formula that includes vitamin E.

Excessive vitamin A and D is possible with too much cod liver oil. Pregnant women and women who are trying to become pregnant must be careful about excessive intake of vitamin A due to its potential effect on the fetus. Fish oils extracted from non-liver sources are usually not a problem. Check the label of your fish oil product for its vitamin A and D content.

Fish oil may increase homocysteine concentrations and nitric oxide metabolism in healthy humans. At excessive levels, these substances can tip you in the direction of inflammation and oxidant stress (free radical damage to your cells). You can control this potential problem with a high-quality B-complex vitamin that includes folate and vitamin B12.

Fish oil, especially in large doses over a period of time, has a blood-thinning effect and thus affect bleeding time. The thinner your blood, the longer it usually takes the bleeding to stop if you have a wound. If you're on a blood thinning medication (aspirin, coumadin, etc.), consult with your physician before taking fish oil or EPA/DHA capsules.

Fish have no refuge from environmental pollution and most have become contaminated to some extent with mercury, dioxins, and other petrochemicals. When oil is extracted from fish, the chemicals come along with the oil. In addition, if too much heat is used during processing, free radical peroxides will be present in the oil. Therefore you should be very selective when purchasing any fish oil product.

Buy fish oil only from reputable companies who have verified by independent laboratory analysis that their product is free from chemical contamination and peroxides. Vital Nutrients fish oil is free of contaminants, as verified by independent laboratory analysis.

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Garlic for Health

Garlic has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb. It has been cultivated in the Middle East for more than 5,000 years and has been an important part of Traditional Chinese Medicine. The bulb is used medicinally. It has been traditionally used for many conditions, including parasites, respiratory problems, poor digestion, and low energy.

It has these constituents:

Benefits of Garlic

Clinical Applications include:

Our review of the medical literature reveals the following information about the use of garlic extracts.

Antioxidant Protection

Anti-Atherogenic

Anti-Thrombotic

Anti-hypertensive (high blood pressure)

Anti-Microbial

Dosage

Side Effects

Be cautious if you are taking anticoagulant drugs. Some people experience gastric irritation even at moderate doses. Other people have difficulty metabolizing allicin effectively.

To order garlic extract by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Glucosamine Sulfate

Glucosamine sulfate is a building block for the polymeric connective tissue constituents known as glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) (also called mucopolysaccharides), and mucoproteins.

Uses & Clinical Applications

Clinical Applications for Arthritis

How Does It Work?

Endogenous synthesis declines with age; and chronic ailments, such as osteoarthritis, can arise from the deficit in glucosamine manufacture.

Dosage

Side Effects - Glucosamine Sulfate

Gluocosamine side effects are minimal.

Medical Studies on Glucosamine

  1. Delafuente JC, Glucosamine in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Rheum Dis Clin North Am 2000 Feb;26(1):1-11, vii.
  2. Deal CL and Moskowitz RW, Nutraceuticals as therapeutic agents in osteoarthritis. The role of glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and collagen hydrolysate. Rheum Dis Clin North Am 1999 May;25(2):379-95.
  3. Bassleer C, et al, Stimulation of proteoglycan production by glucosamine sulfate in chondrocytes isolated from human osteoarthritic articular cartilage in vitro. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 1998 Nov;6(6):427-34.
  4. Qiu GX, et al, Efficacy and safety of glucosamine sulfate versus ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis. Arzneimittelforschung 1998 May;48(5):469-74.
  5. Da Camara CC and Dowless GV, Glucosamine sulfate for osteoarthritis. Ann Pharmacother 1998 May;32(5):580-7.
  6. Gottlieb MS, Conservative management of spinal osteoarthritis with glucosamine sulfate and chiropractic treatment. J Manipulative Physiol Ther 1997 Jul-Aug;20(6):400-14.
  7. D'Ambrosio E, et al, Glucosamine sulphate: a controlled clinical investigation in arthrosis. Pharmatherapeutica 1981;2(8):504-8.
  8. Murray M, Encyclopedia of Nutritional Supplements. Rocklin, CA: Prima Publishing, 1996.

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Glucosamine and Chondroitin for Arthritis

Glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin sulfate work synergistically to reduce chronic joint inflammation such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Glucosamine - Clinical Applications

What Is Glucosamine?

How Glucosamine Works

Glucosamine Biochemistry

Glucosamine Dosage

Glucosamine Side Effects

Chondroitin - Clinical Applications

What Is Chondroitin?

How Does Chondroitin Work?

Chondroitin Dosage

800 mg to 1600mg daily in divided doses.

Chondroitin Side Effects

Glucosamine + Chondroitin Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 capsules 2 times a day

To order our natural agents for arthritis (osteoarthritis) or rheumatoid arthritis ("Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Green Tea

Green tea (camellia sinensis) has been cultivated in China as far back as 2700 BC. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, it has been used for headaches, body aches and pains, digestion, depression, immune enhancement, detoxification, as an energizer, and to prolong life.

It contains volatile oils, vitamins, minerals, and caffeine, and polyphenols. The polyphenol of interest is a catechin called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Polyphenols are believed to be responsible for most of its roles in promoting good health.

Benefits of Green Tea

Consumption of green tea beverage or extracts confers a wide range of possible health benefits:

Click here to read more about the benefits of green tea.

Dosage

A recommended dosage would be 300-400 mg of polyphenols daily.

One cup beverage contains about 50-100 mg of polyphenols, depending on the quantity and quality of tea leaves used.

Tablets and capsules containing standardized extracts of polyphenols, particularly EGCG, are available. Some provide up to 97% polyphenol content—which is equivalent to drinking 4 cups (1,000 ml) of tea. Some of these standardized products are decaffeinated.

Side Effects

Green tea is generally free of side effects. The most common adverse effects reported from consuming large amounts (several cups per day) are insomnia, anxiety, or other symptoms caused by the caffeine content in the herb.

An extract of green tea taken by healthy women with a meal inhibited the absorption of non-heme iron (the form of iron in plant foods). A high level of tea consumption could theoretically induce an iron deficiency in susceptible individuals.

Before consuming green tea extract or drinking large amounts of tea, consult with your physician if you take these medications: atropoine, cardec dm, codeine, ephedrine, limitil, theophylline, or warfarin. The absorption of alkaline medicines can be delayed by interaction with the tannin constituents of green tea.

Caution should be exercised in patients suffering from hyperactivity, renal dysfunction, susceptibility to myospasm, and anxiety disorders. This caution is based on the methylxanthine content of some extracts.

Pregnant women should not exceed a daily dose of 5 cups.

To order green tea extract by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Gymnema

Gymnema sylvestre is a woody climbing plant that grows in the tropical forests of central and southern India. The leaves are used in herbal medicine preparations. It has been used for thousands of years within the Indian Ayurvedic tradition for adult-onset diabetes. It is also a part of the botanical traditions of African cultures. It has been called gur-mar (“sweet destroyer”) because of its reputation for neutralizing one’s ability to taste sweet foods. Other ailments treated with this plant include dyspepsia, liver disorders, and tissue fluid retention.

Clinical Applications

How Gymnema Works

Insulin

Hyperglycemia

Hypoglycemia

Taste Sense for Sweetness

Cholesterol

Lipid Absorption

Dosage

400-600 mg of a Gymnema extract per day, standardized to 25% gymnemic acids, in divided doses.

 

Side Effects

To order gymnema by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Hawthorn

Hawthorn (Crataegus) is a shrub commonly found in Europe, western Asia, North America, and North Africa. Medicinal extracts primarily use the leaves and flowers. It has been used for many years for congestive heart failure and to relieve other cardiac problems including angina, cardiac arrhythmia, hypertension and atherosclerosis. Traditionally, it has also been used as a sore throat astringent and a diuretic for kidney disorders and edema. The leaves, flowers, and berries of hawthorn contain a variety of bioflavonoids that appear to be primarily responsible for the cardiac actions of the plant. These compounds are often standardized in leaf and flower extracts, which are widely used in Europe.

Clinical Applications

Overall Cardiovascular Effects

Hawthorn flavonoid polymers have been found to have low toxicity, profound hypotensive activity, strong and prolonged cardiotonic effects, and some detoxifying properties.

Inotropic Effects

Crataegus has displayed a significant positive inotropic effect on the contraction of cardiac myocytes in vitro. This effect does not seem to be associated with the constituent anthocyanidin flavonoids. Concurrently, Crataegus increases myocyte energy turnover for mechanical activity and ionic cycling. Thus the increase in contractile activity is accomplished in an energy-economical fashion. The inotropic effect may be attributed to increased Ca++ sensitivity. Unlike sympathomimetic drugs, whose positive inotropic effects increase arrhymias by shortening the refractory period, Crataegus reduces the risk of arrhthmias by lengthening the refractory period. Unlike conventional anti-arrhymia drugs, that have negative inotropic effect, Crataegus reduces arrhymia risk with a concurrent positive inotropic effect.

Cardioprotective and Anti-Arrhythmic Effects

Anti-Hyperlipidemia Effects

Anti-Hypertensive Effects

Anti-Viral Effects

Crataegus extracts have demonstrated in vitro anti-viral effects against HIV.

Antioxidant

Phenolic proanthocyanidins and flavonoid constituents from the fresh young leaves, fresh floral buds, and pharmaceutical dried flowers have exhibited significant in vitro scavenging activity against reactive oxygen species.

Dosage

Crataegus extract standardized to 1.8-2.0% vitexin, 450 mg three times a day.

Hawthorn Side Effects

Hawthorn Drug Interactions

To order Hawthorn by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Immune Support Herbs and Botanicals

There are a number of herbs and botanicals that support your immune system and thus help you to prevent or treat bacterial or viral infections such as cold or flu. These herbs are also helpful if you have an immune deficiency of any kind.

Astragalus membranaceus

Echinacea species (Coneflower)

Atractylodes macrocephala

Siler (Ledebouriella seseloides)

Isatis tinctoria

Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 capsules 2-4 times a day

To order our natural immune support agents ("Immune Support") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Ipriflavone

Ipriflavone is a synthetic derivative of the soy isoflavone called daidzein. It is converted to at least seven metabolites within the human body. The metabolites, especially M2 and M5, are also bio-active. This product is used to prevent menopausal osteoporosis (bone loss) and may be useful in other metabolic bone disorders.

Clinical Applications

How Ipriflavone Works

Dosage

600 mg/day (300 mg twice a day or 200 mg three times a day)

Side Effects

To order our Ipriflavone product for prevention of menopausal bone loss by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Herbs for Arthritis and Joint Health

There are a number of herbs (botanicals) that work synergistically to reduce chronic joint inflammation such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Devil's Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens)

Frankincense (Boswellia carteri)

Bromelain

Turmeric (Curcumin)

Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium)

Licorice (glycyrrhiza glabra)

Nettles (Urtica dioica)

Dosage

Recommended dosage: 2 capsules 2 to 4 times per day.

To order our natural joint health, anti-inflammatory botanical formula ("Joint Ease") by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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Multivitamins

A multivitamin & mineral formula contains a wide array of nutrients that are vital for your good health.

Vitamin A is necessary for the growth and repair of the body, especially epithelial (i.e. skin and organ linings) and mucus surfaces (i.e. lungs, gastrointestinal tract, etc. which harbor the antibodies known as, "secretory IgA," a necessary "first defense" component of the immune system. Vitamin A also prompts secretion of gastric juices which are necessary for proper digestion of proteins. Vitamin A aids in the manufacturing of healthy red blood cells (RBCs), in the healing process, and is important in proper cellular reproduction. Vitamin A supports the immune system - supplementary treatment of vitamin A is reported to protect cells and enhance antibody formation (B cells) and T cell formation.

Beta-carotene works in areas of low oxygen tension, making beta carotene a good antioxidant for the lungs and blood, where tissue oxygen exchange is being conducted. Mixed carotenes include beta carotene, as well as other natural carotenoids.

B-complex vitamins help give us the energy to function. They are known as the, "catalytic spark plugs" of the body; they catalyze many biochemical reactions because of their role as coenzymes. They provide energy by converting carbohydrates into glucose, and are vital in the metabolism of fats and proteins. Biotin is an example of a water-soluble B-vitamin.

Vitamin B-12 (also known as hydroxycobalamin) is essential in nervous system function, helps to build healthy red blood cells, increases energy level, stimulates utilization of carbohydrates, fats and proteins, and is important in DNA and RNA synthesis (the material that makes up our genetic code).

Folic acid complements the actions of B-12 and synergistically boosts its activity, especially in red blood cell formation and homocysteine reduction. Folic acid is important in pregnancy since it is needed for the division of cells in the body. A recently recognized function is preventing neural tube defects in newborns.

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant which protects all cells, regenerates other antioxidants such as vitamin E, and guards against the increased production of free radicals (which damage cells). It has a powerful ability to detoxify heavy metals. Vitamin C is a cofactor in numerous biochemical reactions, including collagen synthesis. Vitamin C is greatly involved in many aspects of the immune system, such as healing wounds, forming red blood cells, (RBCs), fighting bacterial infections, enhancing white blood cell (WBC) production, reducing inflammation and aiding in phagocytosis (digestion of damaged, dead or foreign cells). Suboptimal vitamin C intake can result in impaired digestion, poor circulation, increased infection, and slow wound healing.

Vitamin D increases the absorption of calcium. In addition to the fact that vitamin D is needed for calcium absorption, is the fact that many people feel we are in a dire vitamin D deficiency state. Risk for deficiency is increased by low light exposure, diabetes, hypertension, and anti-convulsant drug therapy. The New England Journal of Medicine reports that vitamin D deficiency is common, even in those people exceeding the RDA, and also in those without apparent risk factors for D deficiency.

Vitamin E is the major lipid antioxidant in the body. It strengthens capillary walls, stabilizes cell membranes, and prevents lipids, proteins (including hormones such as pituitary and adrenal), and other substances from being oxidized. It contributes to the antioxidant protection of phase I in the liver. Its ability to stabilize cell membranes is critical to cell preservation, detoxification function, and glucose control.

Chromium is a blood sugar regulator. Chromium is part of the glucose tolerance factor (GTF), which is thought to potentiate the action of insulin at the cellular level. Chromium supplementation has been used in the treatment of diabetes, hypoglycemia, elevated cholesterol and triglyceride levels and obesity. It has been shown to restore glucose tolerance to normal, reduce insulin requirements, and eliminate encephalopathy in doses of 150 mcg/day.

Copper is an essential mineral necessary for the proper functioning of nerve, bone, blood and connective tissue. Copper is a catalyst in the synthesis of hemoglobin and red blood cells (RBC’s), has a crucial role in respiration, facilitates iron absorption, and is involved in protein metabolism and healing processes. The best food source of copper is oysters. Nuts, potatoes, vegetables, dried legumes, cereals and meat also contain copper.

Iodine nourishes the thyroid gland. Kelp is a sea plant extract, which is high in natural iodine. Multi-vitamins and minerals may or may not contain a source of iodine.

Manganese. Primary uses include: trauma and injury (sprains and strains), inflammation, ligament support, osteoporosis, epilepsy and diabetes. Manganese is an important component of Manganese Superoxide Dismutase (MnSOD), which is an enzyme that battles the damaging free radicals that cause swelling. Immediately after trauma, the body starts coding for more MnSOD to be produced. Repletion of manganese after inflammatory trauma is necessary to keep up the free radical defense system.

Selenium. Primary uses include: liver support, heart disease, cancer risk reduction, eye disorders, heavy metal toxicity, and thyroid support. Selenium, as part of the glutathione peroxidase enzyme, is involved with antioxidant reactions. Additionally, however, it has reported antioxidant activity of its own. Studies on the metabolism of phenobarbitol in rats suggest that selenium is needed for normal functioning of the hepatic (liver) microsomal P-450 system, and this function is also independent of glutathione peroxidase. Epidemiological studies suggest that many diseases, such as heart disease and cancer, are higher in areas where selenium is depleted in the soil.

Zinc is a constituent of 25 enzymes involved in digestion and metabolism. Zinc is a component of insulin, plays a part in carbohydrate digestion, protein metabolism and phosphorus metabolism, is essential for growth and development of the reproductive organs, is necessary for proper functioning of the prostate gland, is important in wound healing and burns, maintains acid-base balance, and is essential to proper immune function. Zinc also has antioxidant properties, plays an important role in taste and smell, and is beneficial in skin conditions.

Amino acids, such as phenylalanine, histidine, tyrosine, lysine, valine, methionine, isoleucine, leucine, threonine and glutamic acid are all vital to the protein structures of essential substances in the body, including hormones, enzymes, blood clotting factors, transport factors, cell receptors, and immune antibody formation. Amino acids are building blocks for body tissue, including muscle and many of the glands, such as adrenals and thyroid.

Contraindications

Vitamin A in doses over 10,000 i.u. should not be consumed by women who are pregnant or who are capable of becoming pregnant. Even though there are conflicting studies on the possibility of Vitamin A in large doses causing birth defects, it is better to be cautious. High dosages of vitamin C should not be taken in gout, kidney stone formers, or iron overload disease. Vitamin D is fat-soluble but not toxic in doses less than 2400 IU/day.

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Pygeum

Pygeum africanum is an evergreen tree found in the higher elevations of Africa. The powdered bark is used as a tea for relief of urinary disorders in African herbal medicine. Laboratory investigations into the active constituents in the bark led to the development of the modern lipophilic (fat-soluble) extract used today.

Clinical Applications

Pygeum is used primarily for the treatment of benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH).

How Does It Work?

Pygeum contains pentacyclic triterpenes, sterolic triterpenes, fatty acids, ferulic acid esters.

Dosage

Lipophilic pygeum extract standardized to contain 14% triterpenes including beta-sitosterol and 0.5% n-docosanol : 100–200mg QD in divided doses.

Side Effects

Side effects from the lipophilic extract of pygeum africanum are rare. In clinical trials, there have been reports of mild gastrointestinal upset in some men. Side effects rarely result in discontinuation of therapy.

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Saw Palmetto

Saw palmetto (also referred to as sabal or serenoa repens) is an evergreen palm that grows in the southeastern U.S. The berries of the plant are used medicinally. It has been used for centuries as a medicinal agent in urinary complications. Today, it is commonly used in men suffering from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).

Uses and Clinical Applications for Saw Palmetto

Enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hypertrophy - BPH). Numerous human trials report that saw palmetto improves symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) such as nighttime urination, urinary flow, and overall quality of life, although it may not greatly reduce the size of the prostate. The effectiveness may be similar to the medication finasteride (Proscar), but with fewer side effects.

Male-pattern hair loss. Saw palmetto may block some effects of testosterone and therefore reduce male pattern hair loss, similar to the medication finasteride (Propecia).

Other possible uses (based on tradition, scientific theories or limited research). Acne, anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac, asthma, bladder inflammation, breast feeding, breast enlargement or reduction, bronchitis, cancer, cough, diabetes, digestive aid, diarrhea, excess hair growth, expectorant, high blood pressure, hormone imbalances (estrogen or testosterone), immune stimulation, impotence, indigestion, menstrual pain, migraine headache, muscle or intestinal spasms, ovarian cysts, pelvic pain, polycystic ovarian syndrome, postnasal drip, sedation, sexual vigor, sore throat, sperm production, testicular atrophy, upper respiratory tract infection, urinary antiseptic, uterine or vaginal disorders.

How Does Saw Palmetto Work?

Saw palmetto:

Enlarged prostate (BPH) is thought to be caused by an increase in the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the prostate. DHT stimulates the production of prostate cells. Excessive formation of DHT leads to overproduction and enlargement of the prostate (hyperplasia). Another factor is the presence of estrogen which inhibits the elimination of DHT. There are several reported mechanisms of action of saw palmetto for use in treating BPH. They include inhibition of DHT production, inhibition of the binding of DHT to its receptors and promoting its breakdown.

Also, saw palmetto is reported to exert an antiestrogenic effect, as well as an antiandrogenic effect. Some investigators believe that its antiestrogenic effect may be more important than any of its other actions. Saw palmetto inhibits 5-a reductase, an enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of testosterone into DHT, having alpha-1 and alpha-2 adrenergic blocking capabilities. Various clinical studies have reported the positive benefits of using standardized saw palmetto extracts in the prevention of BPH, and saw palmetto has compared favorably with finasteride in several studies.

Of interest is immune stimulating activity of polysaccharides found in the fruit of saw palmetto. In vitro, a water extract of saw palmetto produced an increase in phagocytic (white blood cell) activity by 36%. Also, in laboratory mice, the polysaccharide fraction of saw palmetto berry produced a much higher carbon clearance value than echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) or Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) and showed a higher value than any of nine other plant extracts. However, the standardized and alcohol extracted preparations of saw palmetto are not extracted with water, so would not contain these immune stimulating polysaccharides - use encapsulated raw berries if you have an immune system concern.

Synergists: Saw palmetto works synergistically with zinc and essential fatty acids.

How Much Should You Take?

A standardized extract of saw palmetto containing 80% to 95% sterols and fatty acids (liposterolic content) is often recommended. Standardization involves measuring the amount of certain substances in products to try to make different preparations similar to each other.

The most common dosage is 160 mg. twice daily if you have prostate trouble. The daily dosage range is 80 - 320 mg.

Saw Palmetto Side Effects and Precautions

At recommended dosage levels, saw palmetto is considered safe. There is a very low incidence of headaches or gastrointestinal complaints if taken on an empty stomach.

Because of possible hormonal activity, saw palmetto is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breast-feeding.

There is little experience with hormone-dependent disorders other than prostate enlargement (BPH).

Drug Interactions

Constituents of saw palmetto berry have alpha-adrenergic blocking activity, which may alter the effects of these medications: prazosin, terazosin, doxazosin mesylate, tamsulosi.

Saw palmetto may have an additive effect if taken with drugs that affect the levels of male sex hormones (androgens), such as finasteride (Prosca, Propecia) or flutamide (Eulexin).

In theory, saw palmetto may interfere with birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy in women.

If you're taking any of these drugs, check with your doctor or naturopathic physician before taking saw palmetto.

Because saw palmetto may have activity on the body's response to estrogen, the effects of other agents believed to have estrogen-like properties may be altered. Possible examples include alfalfa, black cohosh, bloodroot, burdock, hops, kudzu, licorice, pomegranate, red clover, soy, thyme, white horehound, and yucca.

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Soy Isoflavones

Soy, a staple food in many Asian countries, contains valuable constituents, including protein, isoflavones, saponins, and phytosterols. The isoflavones in soy, primarily genistein and daidzein, have been well researched by scientists for their antioxidant and phytoestrogenic properties.

Clinical Applications

How Does It Work?

Dosage

Typical dosage is 50-100 mg daily.

Side Effects

Caution should be exercised with patients who have known sensitivity to soy products. In rare cases, there may an enhancement or diminution in thyroid output.

To order soy isoflavones by phone, please call toll-free 877-347-8600.

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