This nourishing soup is a delicious way to naturally boost your immunity. Traditionally prepared in cultures throughout the world, bone broth is easily digested and provides a wealth of nutritional and immune support factors. I myself do not eat meat and promote a 85/15 ratio diet of plant foods to animal foods. When people have lost blood from surgery or other causes and/or are undergoing chemotherapy, the blood nourishment from the addition of the animal bones is specifically helpful for recovery. I have no vegetarian alternative, but you can make the soup without the animal bones and it will still be extremely beneficial and immune boosting, but less helpful for those with iron anemia. For beef alternatives, many people use elk or lamb. I understand and respect anyone that chooses not to consume this for ethical reasons, but as Ben Franklin so eloquently wrote, “A place for everything, everything in its place.”Continue reading “Immune-Enhancing Soup”
Potatoes: The Humble Food That Tops All Other Super Foods
People love the idea of ‘super foods,’ and I’m commonly asked my thoughts about everything from goji berries to blue-green algae. Some super foods, like chia seeds and coconut oil, are foods that I recommend. Others, like blue-green algae—sourced from a lake polluted by agricultural runoff—are supplements that I obviously do not advise taking. But even the super foods I like and recommend don’t compare to the humble potato. The humble potato is nutrient dense, and not only is it good for you, it’s good for the health of the planet.
Potatoes have gotten a bad rap, with many people thinking that they’re fattening and devoid of nutritional value. But potatoes have a long history of nourishing humankind. In Ireland, people based their diets on nutrient rich potatoes for hundreds of years.Continue reading “Potatoes: The Humble Food That Tops All Other Super Foods”
Mederi Medicine and the Application of Hermeneutics
More people are reaching a ripe old age than ever before in history. In the early 1800s, life expectancy was a mere 45 years. But today, in Australia, Canada, Japan, and most European countries, people can expect to live to 80 and beyond. If the trend continues, a majority of babies born in these countries will live past their 100th birthday. But this increase in longevity comes with some bad news. Although we manage to survive longer than preceding generations, we often gain time without being healthier in those extra years.
The Difference Between Thriving and Surviving as We Age
Studies worldwide indicate that after age 60, most people have at least one chronic disorder, such as heart disease or diabetes. A recent population-based study in Sweden found that at age 80, only one of 10 individuals were living well and not suffering from either a chronic disease or Frailty Syndrome.
In the U.S. almost one-third of people older than 85 have received an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, often combined with other types of dementia such as that caused by vascular disease.1
What’s Wrong with Our Modern Medicine Healthcare Model?
Modern Medicine faces fundamental challenges in that we are removing the human element and attempting to reduce everything to a single cause and effect. Given the functional interdependencies between the molecular components in a human cell, disease is rarely a consequence of an abnormality in a single gene, but reflects the perturbations of the complex intracellular and intercellular network that links tissue and organ systems.2Continue reading “Mederi Medicine and the Application of Hermeneutics”
Understanding Neutrophil to Lymphocyte Ratio: The Most Important and Overlooked Biomarker of Systemic Inflammation in Cancer: Part 1
Inflammation is an essential part of our body’s immune defense. When we encounter pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, or parasites, our body responds with inflammation to fight the invaders and increase immune response. In these instances, inflammation is beneficial. But inflammation has a dark side—left unchecked, it can wreak havoc on cells, tissues, and organs. For example, it’s well established that chronic inflammation is a powerful force in the initiation, growth, and spread of cancer.
There are three essential points to consider: First, a chronic inflammatory state can, over time, initiate cancer development. Second, we still need to find the cause of the chronic state of inflammation—for example, pathogenic (chronic infection), life-style, stress, years of poor eating, or a combination of the above. And third, it is important to keep in mind that the cancer energy, as it gains in intelligence, manipulates our immune system, creating a cancer-favorable, pro-inflammatory micro-environment.
Research indicates that the systemic manifestations of inflammation can provide a valuable biomarker for prognosis and treatment stratification. Numerous studies indicate that a simple indicator of systemic inflammation—based on neutrophilia and/or lymphocytopenia—can provide prognostic information in a wide range of cancer types. In particular, the value of one index (the dNLR) derived from total white cell and neutrophil counts, is enabling large retrospective studies to be carried out.
Although not informative from a biological standpoint in distinguishing cause from effect, the results of these studies are likely to be of significance in how we approach cancer. In my practice, I always consider the role of inflammation in cancer and tailor protocols for patients accordingly. The following markers are among those I consider most important:
- Tumor-associated neutrophils (TANs)
Bio-Markers: CD11b+, CD66b+, CD63+
Tumor-associated neutrophils (TAN) play a major role in cancer biology. Neutrophils are the most abundant circulating leukocyte in humans, and are phenotypically plastic. Neutrophils, as a key component in inflammation, often play a crucial role in inflammation driven tumorigenesis. TAN can take an anti-tumorigenic (what we are calling an “N1-phenotype”) versus a pro-tumorigenic (“N2”) phenotype. The anti-tumor activities of N1 TANs include expression of more immuno-activating cytokines and chemokines, lower levels of arginase, and more capability of killing tumor cells. N2 neutrophils are pro-tumorigenic, and secrete T2 cytokines.
Continue reading “Understanding Neutrophil to Lymphocyte Ratio: The Most Important and Overlooked Biomarker of Systemic Inflammation in Cancer: Part 1”
Herbal Protection for Acute Viral Infections
Over the last few months, headlines around the world have focused on the Ebola epidemic sweeping West Africa. In early August of this year, the World Health Organization defined the outbreak as a Public Health Event of International Concern. Closer to home, the focus has been on the recent outbreak in the US, with calls for special hospitals equipped to handle Ebola and for specialists to recognize and treat the disease as well as to be trained in monitoring travelers at airports.1
I’ve recently had numerous inquiries from people who are concerned about Ebola. It’s important to understand that the possibility of an Ebola epidemic in the United States is extremely low.2 However, because of increasing concern about the disease, I’m presenting information from my research and guidance as far as what I personally would do if I was inadvertently exposed to the virus, or if I actually contracted the disease. Although I have no factual scientific data on any of these recommendations, based on the etiology of Ebola, I would look to the herbal toolbox I have used for decades as my first line of defense.
Continue reading “Herbal Protection for Acute Viral Infections”
Can You Trust Your Herbal Products?
Over the past several decades, the demand for medicinal herbal products has grown by leaps and bounds—as a result, the marketplace is flooded with thousands of herbal offerings, with more appearing every day. Not too long ago, if you wanted herbs, you pretty much had to grow or wild craft them yourself. But today, herbs and herbal formulations are dispensed by holistic healthcare providers, or can be self-prescribed by perusing the offerings at health food stores, pharmacies, “big box” stores, or on-line. Even the local gas station convenience store carries an assortment of caffeine-laced herbal energy drinks. The positive side of the flourishing herbal products industry is that people are recognizing the healing potential of medicinal plants, and are seeking an alternative to pharmaceutical drugs. At the same time, I have significant questions and concerns that I believe need to be addressed.