Peptic ulcers (an ulcer is an erosion of the tissue, producing a crater-like lesion) occur in the stomach (gastric ulcer) or the first portion of the small intestine (duodenal ulcer). Duodenal ulcers are more common, occuring in an estimated six to twelve percent of the adult population in the United States. In other words, approximately ten percent of the U.S. population has clinical evidence of duodenal ulcer at some time in their lifetime. Duodenal ulcers are four times more common in men than in women, and four to five times more common than gastric ulcers.
Although symptoms of a peptic ulcer may be absent or quite vague, most peptic ulcers are associated with abdominal discomfort noted forty-five to sixty minutes after meals or during the night. In the typical case, the pain is described as gnawing, burning, cramp-like, or aching, or as "heartburn." Eating or taking antacids usually results in great relief .
Even though duodenal and gastric ulcers occur at different locations, they appear to be the result of similar mechanisms. Specifically, the development of a duodenal or gastric ulcer is a result of damage to the protective factors that line the stomach and duodenum.
In the past, the focus has primarily been on the acidic secretions of the stomach a the primary cause of both gastric and duodenal ulcers. However, more recently the focus has been on the bacterium Helicobacter pylori and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Gastric acid is extremely corrosive. The pH of gastric acid (pH 1 to 3) would eat an ulcer right through the skin. To protect against ulcers, the lining of the stomach and small intestine has a layer of mucus, a slippery layer of mucus (mucopolysaccharides). In addition, the constant renewing of intestinal cells and the secretion of factors that neutralize the acid when it comes in contact with the stomach and intestinal lining also protect against ulcer formation. Gastric acid is designed to digest the food we eat, not the stomach or small intestine.
Individuals who experience any symptoms of a peptic ulcer need competent medical care. Peptic ulcer complications such as hemorrhage, perforation, and obstruction represent medical emergencies that require immediate hospitalization. Individuals with peptic ulcer must be monitored by a physician, even if they are following the natural approaches discussed below.
Stress and Emotions
Stress is universally believed to be an important causative factor in peptic ulcers. However, this link is quite controversial in the medical literature. One of the big problems is that studies attempting to examine this assumption about stress and ulcers have been poorly designed. Several studies have shown that the number of stressful life events is not significantly different in peptic ulcer patients than in carefully selected, ulcer-free controls. These data suggest that it is not simply the amount of stress, but rather the patient's response to it, that is the significant factor. A large study of 4,000 persons who had no history of peptic ulcer disease revealed that those who perceived stress in their lives were at increased risk of developing peptic ulcers.
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The concepts of internal cleansing and detoxification have been around for quite some time. In modern times, as society has increasingly been exposed to toxic compounds in the air, water, and food, it has become apparent that our ability to detoxify substances to which we are exposed is of critical importance in our overall health.
Identifying toxins in the body and natural ways to support the detoxification and elimination of these harmful compounds. Toxic substances are everywhere... in the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink. Even our bodies and the bacteria in our intestines produce toxic substances.
Toxins can damage the body in an insidious and cumulative way. Once the detoxification system becomes overloaded, toxic metabolites (products of metabolism) accumulate, and we become progressively more sensitive to other chemicals, some of which are not normally toxic. This accumulation of toxins can wreak havoc on our normal metabolic process.
To focus on enhancing detoxification primarily by promoting improved liver function. Our modern environment seriously overloads our liver, resulting in increased levels of circulating toxins in the blood, which damage most of our body's systems. An overburdened liver sends out alarm signals that manifest as psoriasis, acne, chronic headaches, inflammatory and autoimmune disease, and chronic fatigue.
Types of Toxins
You may be asking, "What exactly is a toxin?"
A toxin is defined as any compound that has a detrimental effect on cell function or structure. Obviously, some toxins cause minimal negative effects while others can be fatal. We have organized the discussion of toxins as follows
*Breakdown products of protein metabolism
Including in this category are the following heavy metals: lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic, nickel, and aluminum. These metals tend to accumulate within the brain, kidneys, and immune system, where they can severely disrupt normal function.
This category of toxins is primarily dealt with by the liver and includes toxic chemicals, drugs alcohol, solvents, formaldehyde, pesticides, herbicides, and food additives. It is staggering to contemplate the tremendous load placed on the liver as it detoxifies the incredible quantity of toxic chemicals it is constantly exposed to.
Toxins produced by bacteria and yeast in the gut can be absorbed, causing significant disruption of body functions. Examples of these types of toxins include toxins from bacteria (endotoxins and exotoxins), toxic amines, toxic derivatives of bile, and various carcinogenic substances.
Breakdown Products Of Protein Metabolism
The kidneys are largely responsible for the elimination of toxic waste products of protein breakdown (ammonia, urea, etc.). Drinking adequate amounts of water and avoiding excessive protein intake can support the kidneys in their important function.
General Rules For Dehydrating Vegetables
By Excalibur Preserve It Naturally
Vegetables - you can dry a different vegetable each day for a month and still not go through the entire list. Some are more suitable for dehydrating than others but once you get started, you'll want to try them all.
What do we get from vegetables? Vegetables are rich sources of vitamins and minerals. Some of the important nutrients they contain include: vitamin A, vitamin C, niacin, phosphorus, calcium, and iron - all of which are preserved, although not in their entirety, when properly dehydrated. Peas and members of the bean family contribute protein. In addition vegetables are vital suppliers of bulk, indigestible fiber that aids in the digestive process. One thing you probably won't gain from vegetables is weight. One-half cup of most vegetables contains less than 50 calories; starchy vegetables, like potatoes and beans, may have 50 to 100 calories per 1/2 cup serving.
To preserve most of this goodness in your dehydrated food, start with vegetables that are ripe and in prime condition. Buy or pick the crispest, freshest, most flavorful ones that can be obtained. Dehydrating retains most of the nutrition and good taste, but it can't improve on the original quality of the food. The fresher the vegetables are when processed, the better they will taste when dehydrated and cooked.
Take extra care when drying vegetables because they spoil and deteriorate much more quickly than fruits. This doesn't imply that the novice dryer should shy away from them - not at all. Just pay close attention to dehydrating procedures given here and in Chapter 3, and you'll have great results.
Preparation and Pretreatment
Once you get the vegetables home, remember not to store them at room temperature if at all possible. If you can't dry the vegetables immediately, refrigerate them to avoid deterioration. Prepare only as many vegetables as you can dehydrate in one load.
Wash vegetables quickly and thoroughly right before processing. Use cold, not hot, water to help preserve freshness and avoid careless handling that could damage the produce. Vegetables covered with dirt should be rinsed under cool running water and scrubbed if necessary. Don't allow the vegetables to soak in the water. Soaking causes many water-soluble vitamins and minerals to dissolve and speeds deterioration.
Your end product should taste as smooth as it looks!
And Being Aware Of:
In the near future, we can foresee that many more people will experiment with herbal medicines for everyday ailments like coughs, colds, sore throats, menstrual problems, minor cuts, scrapes and burns. In such cases, natural herbal remedies may be as effective, no more expensive over-the-counter drugs.
Since herbs lose their essential oils, and thus their efficacy, over time, fresh is best. Whenever possible, shop for herbs in herb shops or in the busiest natural food shops. According to herbalists, you want to use herbs as close as possible to the time they were harvested.
The standard rule is that you should never buy more of an herb at one time than you will likely use in a year. Better yet, if you have easy access to an herb store, buy medicinal herbs in amounts that will be consumed within three months.
Of course, buying fresh herbs and mixing concoctions at home is trickier and more time consuming than buying prepackaged varieties of aloe, echinacea, ginkgo biloba and pepper-mint leaf, for example. But if you have the time and energy, you may find that growing your own fresh herbs will dramatically enhance your health.
Truth be told, few people know the actual strength of herbal remedies. One big problem in herbal medicine today is the lack of comparative standards. Three bottles of echinacea herbal extract, for instance, could have widely varying potency, yet exactly the same price leaving the consumer not knowing which is strongest or weakest.
Standardization of herbal products is a thorny issue because the natural foods and herb industries do not want to invite too much government influence of intervention. Nevertheless, consumers have a right to know what they are buying. You must rely on consumer research and a trustworthy vendor for advice on which brands have the best reputation for product quality. Or, of course, you can grow your own.
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Acute glaucoma is a medical emergency. If you are showing any signs of glaucoma, consult an ophthalmologist immediately. Typical signs and symptoms include extreme pain, blurring of vision, reddened eyes, and a fixed and dilated pupil. Unless adequately treated within twelve to forty-eight hours, and individual with acute glaucoma will become permanently blind within two to five days.
Recommended is a healthy diet, with a focus on foods high in vitamin C and flavonoids, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition, regular consumption of cold-water fish (e.g., salmon, mackerel, herring, and halibut) is also encouraged due to their high content of omega-3 fatty acids.
Vitamin C: minimum of 2,000 per day in divided doses (effective dosage may be as high as 35 g per day)
Bioflavonoids (mixed): 1,000 mg per day
Magnesium: 200 to 600 mg per day
Chromium: 200 to 400 mcg per day
Flaxseed oil; One tablespoon daily
Bilberry ( Vaccinium myrtillus) extract (25% anthocyanidin content): 80 mg three times per day
Gingoko biloba extract (24% ginkgo flavonglycosides): 40 to 80 mg three times daily
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