Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) in Medicine, Mood and Neuropsychiatry

The botanical Withania somnifera is widely known as “Ashwagandha,” a Sanskrit name deriving from its use in traditional medicine in India. Withania somnifera (WS) enjoys a formidable reputation in Ayurvedic medicine as a Rasayana herb, i.e., one that can rejuvenate the body and promote the health of all tissues. Since ancient times, it has traditionally been used to strengthen the nervous system. [1] It is classified as a tonic-adaptogen and is often called the “Indian Ginseng,” although not botanically related. The paradoxical meaning of the names of ashwagandha gives away its’ adaptogenic qualities. The common name, “ashwagandha,” means “strong as a horse,” while the botanical name, “somnifera,” means restful sleep.[2]

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Study Reveals Benefits of Holistic Care for Breast Cancer Patients

Sadly, breast cancer is widespread, impacting many people directly or indirectly. It’s the most common cancer among women, comprising 31% of all cancer cases in women. Despite advances in treatment, it still ranks as the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women. So, the chances are high that you know someone affected by breast cancer, whether they’re currently battling it, in remission, or have passed away due to it.[1]

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Caution: Recent Study Claims Vitamin D Supplementation Could Raise Cardiovascular Disease Risk

Here is my counter-review of the recent headline news article that might make you wary of taking vitamins, titled “Vitamin D Supplements May Be a Double-Edged Sword.” This article was written by F. Perry Wilson, MD, MSCE, and published on March 14, 2024, in MDedge Family Medicine (

This was a summary review of a peer-reviewed paper titled “Long-Term Effect of Randomization to Calcium and Vitamin D Supplementation on Health in Older Women: Postintervention Follow-up of a Randomized Clinical Trial,” published in the Annals of Internal Medicine Journal.[1]

The conclusion of this study reads, “Calcium and vitamin D supplements seemed to reduce cancer mortality and increase cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality after more than 20 years of follow-up among postmenopausal women, with no effect on all-cause mortality.” NOTE that the lead word is calcium, not Vitamin D, which Dr. Wilson chose to emphasize.

Dr. Wilson concluded from the study, “I can tell you that for your “average woman,” vitamin D supplementation likely has no effect on mortality. It might modestly reduce the risk for certain cancers while increasing the risk for heart disease (probably through coronary calcification). So, there might be some room for personalization here. Perhaps women with a strong family history of cancer or other risk factors would do better with supplements, and those with a high risk for heart disease would do worse.”

Problems with this Study and Calcium Supplementation

What Dr. Wilson’s article omits is that this isn’t a vitamin D study at all; it’s a calcium study where patients took 1000 mg of calcium carbonate (a poor form of calcium) along with only 400 IUs of vitamin D. This misrepresentation and bias against supplements are frustrating and repetitive.

Calcium carbonate supplementation, especially at 1000 mg daily, isn’t good for heart health or any health condition. It can increase the risk of vascular calcifications.

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Embracing the Cycle of Life, Death, and Renewal: Exploring the Power of Love

I feel blessed to have had a mystical experience years ago, including a glimpse into the mystery of resurrection and life after death. While not everyone has experienced such extraordinary events as parting seas or walking on water, we’ve all encountered amazing miracles in our lives. Often, we keep these experiences to ourselves, fearing discomfort or rejection from others. Consequently, I’ve chosen to share my deepest experiences and thoughts only with a select few.

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Unlocking the Power of Herbal Medicine through Synergy and Network Pharmacology

The noblest foundation for medicine is love. It is love that teaches us the art of healing. Without love, true healing can never be born.” – Paracelsus

In order to deepen our understanding and appreciation for the immense healing value of herbal medicine, it is essential to understand its global impact on biological networks.

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Devoting My Life to Helping Cancer Patients: My Story

Around 35 years ago, I founded my first clinic in Norwalk, CT. It was there that I met a young breast cancer patient who forever changed my life. Working with her ultimately led me to a life of service, compassion, and an unwavering pursuit of knowledge to help cancer patients heal with natural medicine.

She ignited a passion within me that continues to motivate me to apply all that I can to tirelessly support and guide those with cancer. Her name was Sinclair, but everyone at the clinic came to call her “St. Clair” because of the strength, beauty, and kindness that emanated from her.

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