Natural Cold Remedies: What Works, What Doesn’t

Best Vitamin supplements regarding Nitric Oxide Health

Dr Jay Wilkins

By Dr. Mercola

Your nose is running, your eyes are itchy and watery, you have a low-grade fever and you’ve been sneezing all day. You probably have a cold. They are the leading cause of doctor visits and missed days at work and school. The average adult in America will suffer between two and four colds each year.

Despite advancements in medical care and treatment, traditional western medicine has little to offer in the care and treatment of the common cold. That’s because the cold is caused by a virus and not bacteria. This is important because antibiotics work only against bacteria and not against viruses.

Most uncomplicated colds last between two days and two weeks, depending upon the specific virus and your overall general health. Oftentimes over-the-counter cold remedies don’t speed your recovery and can actually prolong your suffering.

Many remedies contain aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil), all of which may suppress your body’s ability to produce antibodies and fight the cold.1 This is completely opposite of your goal to get better as quickly as possible.

Although your physician may offer antiviral medications, such as Tamiflu, they are not effective against the common cold2,3 and carry specific risks worse than the cold they are meant to treat, and may be more ineffective than advertised.

The answer to treating your cold does not lie in the medicine cabinet. Use a combination of lifestyle choices, herbal remedies and vitamin supplementation to fight the virus and support your immune system in defense against viral attacks.

17 Natural Home Remedies

1. Meditation

Meditation has significant positive effects on heart rate, brain function, stress reduction and blood pressure.4 Research also has demonstrated that mindful meditation, or the practice of purposefully paying attention, has lasting positive effects on brain function and your immune system.5

Imaging demonstrated an increase in activation in the left frontal region of the brain associated with lower anxiety, and blood work showed larger increases in antibody production in participants who meditated in the study. Meditation is an option for both treatment and prevention of colds.

2. Exercise

If all your symptoms are above your neck, such as sneezing, sniffling and watery eyes, then breaking out in a sweat is generally considered safe. Your immune system functions better when you exercise regularly and is a good preventative measure.6

Walking, jogging, yoga and slow biking are among the best exercises when you have a cold, while endurance sports, team sports, weightlifting and exercising in the cold weather are among the worst.7

Exercise may help you feel better but may not shorten the length of your cold. If you are involved in strenuous exercise it depletes the energy needed to fight the virus and can actually make your symptoms worse.

3. Sleep

Lack of sleep has been linked to a laundry list of medical disorders from a negative impact on your immune system to dementia.

Sleep has a strong regulatory influence on your immune system and promotes the influence of cytokines stimulating the interaction between antigen-presenting cells and T-helper cells necessary for your body to fight virus infections.8

When you’re sick (and even when you’re not), most people need between about eight hours of sleep a night and plenty of rest during the day.

4. Nasal Saline Rinse

Although researchers can only speculate how saline nasal washes are effective in treating and preventing virus infections and recurrences, the fact is they are effective.9Use only sterile normal saline water in the rinse.

Tap water can increase the inflammatory response in the sinus passages and carry parasites that can infect your brain.

5. Hydrogen Peroxide

In 1928, Dr. Richard Simmons hypothesized that the cold virus entered your body through the ear canal and not the nose. His theory was dismissed by the medical community.

However, in 1938, German researchers had great success using hydrogen peroxide in the ear canal to treat colds and the flu.10 Although the data was vastly ignored by the medical community, I’ve treated many patients who experienced great results with this treatment.

You must start treatment in the first 24 hours to have a significant impact on reducing the length of the cold. You can watch more about how I’ve used this treatment to shorten colds and the flu in the video above.

6. Apple Cider Vinegar

Cold viruses increase the acidity of your body. To fight the virus, take a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar each day. This reduces the acidity and apple cider vinegar has acetic acid that helps prevent the growth of viruses.

7. Raw Honey

Honey has natural antibacterial and antiviral properties. But, you would have to overdose on the honey in order to achieve the effect of treating the virus in your body.

However, if you suffer from a sore throat with your cold, raw honey is as effective as cough syrup or cough drops. Remember that honey is a natural sugar and taken in large amounts will adversely affect your insulin and leptin levels.

Honey Lemon Cough Syrup

Lemon helps promote health by quickly alkalinizing your body, and honey will kill any bacteria. This is a perfect choice for a quick cough remedy.

1. Put a pint of raw honey in a pan on the stove on VERY low heat (Do not boil honey as this changes its medicinal properties).

2. Take a whole lemon and boil in some water in a separate pan for two to three minutes, to both soften the lemon and kill any bacteria that may be on the lemon skin.

3. Let the lemon cool enough to handle, then cut it in slices and add it to the pint of honey on the stove.

4. Let mixture cook on warm heat for about an hour.

5. Then strain the lemon from the honey, making sure all lemon seeds are removed.

6. Let cool, then bottle in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator.

This syrup will keep for two months in the refrigerator. To soothe a cough, take 1/2 teaspoon for a 25-pound child and 1 teaspoon for a 50-pound child, about four times a day, or as often as needed. Adults can take 1 tablespoon doses.11

8. Chicken Soup

Although the biological basis for using chicken soup is unknown, a team of researchers from the University of Nebraska Medical Center found evidence that chicken soup — both homemade and from the can — had anti-inflammatory properties that could prevent the side effects of a cold.12

I’d strongly recommend avoiding the canned varieties in favor of a home-cooked version, however, especially with homemade broth to nourish you from the inside out. The next time you make a pot of chicken soup, make some extra to store in the freezer. That way you can pull some out if you’re feeling under the weather and not up to cooking.

9. Colloidal Silver

Silver has been used in treatments as far back as Hippocrates, who was one of the first to describe its antimicrobial and antibiotic properties. But, because colds and the flu are caused by viruses, using colloidal silver will not be effective.

10. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has both antibacterial and antiviral properties, making it a great addition to your treatment and prevention of colds and the flu.13 Rub coconut oil over your skin. It is readily absorbed into your body and, as an added benefit, will soften your skin too. Add one-half teaspoon to your coffee or tea when you have a cold and cook with coconut oil.

11. Fermented Foods

The health of your immune system resides in your intestines.14 Fermented foods provide your intestines with a good variety of bacteria to support your immune system.

While fermented foods will improve the health of your gut and therefore your immune system, it often does not work fast enough to help reduce the length of your current cold. Eating fermented foods is a preventive measure for more than just a cold.

12. Baking Soda

The Arm & Hammer Baking Soda Company recommends baking soda to reduce the acidity of your body in the treatment of colds and flu. However, I have pushed the body pH in the opposite direction and achieved the same results, shortening the length of an infection.

The administration of baking soda is simple, relatively harmless and easy to test on your own cold. Simply dissolve the recommended amount of baking soda in a glass of cold water and drink it. Recommended dosages from the Arm & Hammer Company for colds and influenza back in 1925 were:

  • Day 1 — Take six doses of one-half teaspoon of baking soda in glass of cool water, at about two-hour intervals
  • Day 2 —Take four doses of one-half teaspoon of baking soda in glass of cool water, at the same intervals
  • Day 3 — Take two doses of one-half teaspoon of baking soda in glass of cool water morning and evening, and thereafter ½ teaspoon in glass of cool water each morning until cold symptoms are gone

This should only be used as an occasional (not chronic) treatment, however, and be careful not to consume excessive amounts, which can cause serious electrolyte and acid/base imbalances.

13. Lifestyle Choices

Other lifestyle choices that will help your body to heal from a cold are to eliminate or drastically reduce your alcohol intake and smoking. Both of these factors negatively impact your immune system, making it more difficult for your body to fight the viral infection.

14. Steam

Steam will not shorten the length of your cold, but it will help to break up the mucous secretions in your sinuses, reduce the inflammation in your nasal passages and help you to breathe better.

15. Stress Reduction

Practicing meditation, yoga or Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) are simple and effective practices to support your immune system and prevent other damage caused by stress. Diseases linked to stress include obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and gastrointestinal problems.15

16. Hand Washing

Hand washing is a deterrent for infection by viruses and against further infection while you are sick. It will also reduce the spread of the virus to other family members, but it will not shorten the length of your cold. Remember that too much hand washing is almost as bad as not enough. Frequent washing strips your skin of protective oils, causing the skin to crack and bleed.

17. Eat Real Food

Eating real food and avoiding processed foods will give your body the necessary tools to fight a viral infection. It will also reduce the potential you’ll suffer a quick recurrence of the infection. Real foods are best described as those found in the outside aisles of the grocery store that require refrigeration to remain fresh.

Eight Vitamins for Colds

1. Zinc

Zinc is nutritionally essential for immune function. Zinc lozenges and powder are available for use during a cold or the flu that can shorten the length of your cold if you have a slight deficiency.16 Your body uses these micronutrients in a balanced state. Too much zinc interferes with copper bioavailability and too much iron can reduce your absorption of zinc. Foods rich in zinc include lobster, oysters, beef, crab, pork, cashews, chickpeas, chicken and Swiss cheese.17

2. Vitamin C

There is evidence that this water-soluble vitamin will shorten the life of your cold. People with higher blood levels also have a lower risk of death from all causes.Typically the higher the dose the better but one is limited to a relatively small amount with oral vitamin C. You can go much higher with IV or liposomal C. I personally use liposomal vitamin C 3 to 4 grams every hour when I get sick or for friends and family that get sick with great results.18 

3. Vitamin D

Research studies have demonstrated that this fat-soluble vitamin is essential to the function of your immune system. However, while important to prevent a cold and the flu, supplementation during a cold may not shorten the length of the illness.19

That being said, suboptimal vitamin D levels will significantly impair your immune response and make you far more susceptible to contracting colds, flu and other respiratory infections, so it’s important to make sure your levels are optimized.

4. Magnesium

The importance of this mineral to your health has previously been underestimated. Researchers have identified a reduction in magnesium levels after strenuous exercise, leading to an increased number of viral infections.20, 21 Supplementation during a cold will likely not reduce the length of your cold. However, an Epsom salt bath will reduce your muscle aches, aid in the absorption of magnesium from the Epsom salts and just make you feel better.

5. Vitamin E

This fat-soluble vitamin enhanced the T-cell-related immune-mediated response in an elderly population. However, while important for prevention, it is not likely to produce immediate results to shorten the length of your cold.

6. Vitamin B6

This vitamin is essential for the production of over 100 enzymes responsible for protein metabolism. Although important to your health, it does not shorten the length of your cold.

7. Vitamin A

This fat-soluble vitamin is important for the differentiation and regulation of almost every cell in your body, including normal immune function. This vitamin is important for the prevention of colds but will not shorten the length of your cold.22

8. Selenium

This trace element is important in a variety of biological functions. However, while a severe deficiency can lead to significant viral infections it is highly unlikely that supplementation during a cold will reduce the length of your cold.23

11 Herbal Cold Remedies

1. Echinacea

This is one of the most popular Native American medicinal plants. The research using Echinacea tea is not consistent. The studies that demonstrated the best effect at shortening the length of a cold occurred when you drink two to three cups of Echinacea tea per day starting on the first or second day of your cold.24

2. Ginseng and Andrographis

Ginseng is a tuber plant and Andrographis is a plant native to South Asia. Double-blind studies have demonstrated that specific Siberian ginseng and andrographis reduce the length and severity of colds when you take it within 72 hours of the start of your symptoms.25,26

3. Pelargonium Sidoides

Research has demonstrated that this obscure herb can reduce the severity and length of the common cold. Scientists theorize that the herb up-regulates the cytokines in protecting host cells from viral invaders.27

4. Raw Garlic

Despite a report from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that there is little evidence garlic has an effect on the common cold, some studies have found that raw garlic can prevent colds and reduce the severity of the cold you already have.28 Test this for yourself at home (be sure to crush the garlic cloves before eating to release their active medicinal properties).

5. Oil of Oregano

This concentrated oil of the oregano plant has potent antibacterial and antiviral effects. In one study, researchers found when in spray form in combination with four other aromatic plants it could immediately reduce the side effects of a cold. This treatment was no longer effective after three days of use. Oil of oregano should not be used by children, women who are pregnant or nursing or who plan to become pregnant.

6. Licorice Root

Licorice root is a traditional herbal remedy to treat colds and upper respiratory infections. To date there is no research that supports the use of licorice root to reduce the length of a cold.29

7. Olive Leaf Extract

Widely known as a non-toxic immune system support, there is not sufficient evidence to suggest olive leaf extract will reduce the length or severity of your current cold. A few studies have demonstrated its effectiveness at reducing the infectivity of the virus and reducing the inflammatory response in the body.30

8. Herbal Tea

Herbal teas from Goldenseal, elderberry, yarrow, boneset, linden, peppermint and ginger may help support your immune system, soothe a sore throat and shorten your cold by up to one or two days.

9. Curcumin

This is a powerful antioxidant that lowers the levels of two enzymes that cause inflammation. There is evidence that curcumin fights the cold virus in the test tube. Further, it supports the immune system and is effective in the prevention and treatment of several other diseases.31

10. Propolis

This is a substance collected by bees from leaf buds and tree bark. This extract may be helpful in the reduction of the length and severity of your cold. Some clinical trials have reported reduced number of upper respiratory infections and a reduction in the length of the viral illness.32

11. White Willow

The use of willow bark dates back to the time of Hippocrates when people were advised to chew on the bark of the tree to reduce pain and fever. The chemical properties of the bark are similar to aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid). Pain and fever relief comes more slowly than aspirin but lasts longer. This is a symptom reliever and will not change the length of your cold.33

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Sauna Therapy May Reduce Risk of Dementia and Boost Brain Health

Excellent Vitamin supplements to Support Nitric Oxide Health

Dr Jay Wilkins

By Dr. Mercola

When it comes to improving your health, some of the simplest strategies can have a tremendous impact.

Sweating in a sauna, for example, has many great health benefits, including expelling of toxins, improving blood circulation, killing disease-causing microbes and improving mitochondrial function.

Research has even shown that regular sauna use correlates with a reduced risk of death from any cause, including lethal cardiovascular events, and may help stave off Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

Sauna Bathing Promotes Brain Health

Most recently, researchers in Finland — a country where most homes come equipped with a sauna — found that men who used a sauna four to seven times a week for an average length of 15 minutes had a 66 percent lower risk of developing dementia, and 65 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s, compared to men who used the sauna only once a week.1

More than 2,300 middle-aged men were followed for more than two decades in this study, and the results held even after other healthy lifestyle factors were taken into account, such as exercise and socioeconomic factors.

How Sauna Use Helps Boost Brain Function

There are many reasons why sauna use may boost brain health, including lowering inflammation and blood pressure, improving vascular function and enhancing relaxation and well-being.2

Other research3 has shown sauna use increases levels of norepinephrine, a stress hormone that increases focus and attention, as well as prolactin, which may promote myelin growth, helping your brain to function faster and repair nerve cell damage.

Researchers have also found a link between heat exposure and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which activates brain stem cells to convert into new neurons. BDNF also triggers numerous other chemicals that promote neural health.

Exercising in heat increases BDNF to a greater degree than exercise done at lower temperatures, suggesting heat stress (i.e., sauna use) is beneficial for brain health.4

They found that exercising in heat increased the permeability of the blood-brain barrier, which is thought to stimulate cerebral output of BDNF. Heat stress also benefits your brain by:5

  • Preventing aggregation of proteins in your arteries and brain
  • Increasing production of dynorphin, which helps cool your body down. Although dynorphin has the opposite effect of endorphins, it sensitizes your brain to endorphins that your body produces
  • Increasing production of growth factors, which in turn promote the growth of brain neurons

Sauna Benefits Your Heart as Well

Previous findings by the same Finnish research team revealed that men who used the Finnish-style, dry heat sauna seven times per week also cut their risk of death from fatal heart problems in half, compared to those who used it only once a week. 6,7,8,9,10  

These findings remained stable even when confounding factors such as smoking, blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels were factored in. In regard to time, the greatest benefits were found among those who sweated it out for 19 minutes or more each session.

One mechanism for this effect is thought to be related to the fact that the heat places stress on your heart and body similar to that of exercise. Conversely, hyperthermic conditioning (i.e., acclimating yourself to heat independent of aerobic physical activity through sauna use) can also boost your exercise endurance.

It does this by inducing adaptations in your body that make it easier for you to perform when your body temperature is elevated. Stated another way; as your body is subjected to heat stress, it gradually becomes acclimated to the heat, prompting a number of beneficial changes and adaptations.

This includes increased blood flow to your heart and muscles (which increase athletic endurance) and increased muscle mass due to greater levels of heat-shock proteins and human growth hormone (HGH).

Compared to traditional saunas, athletes using infrared saunas also report greater recovery from strength and endurance training sessions.11

Heat, Sweat and Detoxification

Your skin is the largest organ in your body and your sweat glands are one way of cleansing your skin and releasing toxins that build up in your cells. Lack of sweating may actually result in an increased toxic load over time, which in turn can adversely affect your heart and brain.

Compared to other detoxification strategies, sauna bathing has a number of benefits, and may be one of the best, if not the best, strategy to lower your toxic load in a natural way.

As discussed in my interview with Dr. George Yu, the mobilization of stored toxins can be further enhanced by taking niacin in conjunction with sauna bathing.

While still often downplayed by modern medicine as a means of detoxification, studies have shown that sweating can help excrete heavy metals such as cadmium, arsenic, lead and mercury,12 for example, all of which can have very serious health effects. 

In one such study, sweat generally exceeded plasma or urine concentrations of toxins. According to the authors, sweating “deserves consideration for toxic element detoxification,” adding that:13

  • Sweat may be an important route for excretion of cadmium when an individual is exposed to high levels
  • Sweat-inducing sauna use might provide a therapeutic method to increase elimination of toxic trace metals
  • Sweating should be the initial and preferred treatment of patients with elevated mercury levels

Other Health Benefits of Sauna Therapy

Sauna use may also help your body excrete nonbiological halides, like bromine or fluoride that displace iodine. This is particularly important if you have thyroid issues.

A lack of sweating or an inability to sweat is often a sign of hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). Hypothyroidism may be exacerbated by halides found in baked goods, soft drinks, pesticides, fire retardants and other products.

These halides bind to the same receptors in your thyroid used to capture iodine, necessary for the production of thyroid hormones. This results in a low production of thyroid hormone and symptoms of hypothyroidism.

The more you can excrete the halides (and reduce your exposure), the more iodine your body can use to produce thyroid hormones.

Individuals suffering from fibromyalgia have also experienced great results from using saunas to reduce discomfort and pain. In one small study, 44 patients with fibromyalgia found a reduction in pain between 33 and 77 percent.

Six months after the study ended, the participants continued to report a reduction in pain between 28 and 68 percent.14

Sauna therapy has also demonstrated benefits for patients with asthma, bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).15 Patients with rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis report positive effects from infrared sauna therapy specifically. After four weeks and eight treatments, pain and stiffness were significantly reduced and improvements were seen in fatigue.16

Anecdotally, one of my senior staff writers reports successfully treating all sorts of aches and pains using a portable tent-style low-EMF infrared sauna, including headaches and general pains associated with menstruation, stiff knees, shoulder and back pain, and even migraines.

She started using it four times a week for 30 minutes per session at 150 degrees by recommendation from her doctor after being diagnosed with lead and aluminum toxicity, and was pleasantly surprised to notice its acute effects on various aches and pains as well.

Different Types of Saunas

There are several different types of saunas to choose from these days, including:17

  1. Finnish sauna, either wet or dry
  2. Far-infrared saunas
  3. Near-infrared saunas (emitters and lamps)

The difference between an infrared sauna and the traditional Finnish-style saunas (whether wet or dry) is that the Finnish-style sauna heats you up from the outside in, like an oven. The infrared sauna heats you from the inside out. Infrared saunas are particularly known for their ability to promote detoxification, and this is part of the reason for that.

By heating your tissues several inches deep, the infrared sauna can enhance your natural metabolic processes and blood circulation. It also helps oxygenate your tissues.

What’s the Difference Between Near- and Far-Infrared Saunas?

Near-infrared saunas have several additional benefits over the others, including far-infrared saunas. For starters, it penetrates your tissue more effectively than far-infrared because wavelengths under 900 nanometers (nm) in the near-infrared are not absorbed by water like the higher wavelengths in mid- and far-infrared, and thus can penetrate tissues more deeply.

When you look at the rainbow spectrum, the visible part of light ends in red. Infrared-A (near-infrared) is the beginning of the invisible light spectrum following red. This in turn is followed by infrared-B (mid-infrared) and infrared-C (far-infrared). While they cannot be seen, the mid- and far-infrared range can be felt as heat. This does not apply to near-infrared, however, which has a wavelength between 700 and 1,400 nm. As previously explained by Dr. Alexander Wunsch:

“Here you have only very low absorption by water molecules, and this is the reason why radiation has a very high transmittance. In other words, it penetrates very deeply into your tissue, so the energy distributes in a large tissue volume. This near-infrared A is not heating up the tissue so you will not feel directly any effect of heat.

This significantly changes when we increase the wavelength, let’s say, to 2,000 nm. Here we are in the infrared-B range and this already is felt as heat. And from 3,000 nm on to the longer wavelength, we have almost full absorption, mainly by the water molecule, and this is [felt as] heating.”

Near-Infrared Radiation Is Important for Optimal Health

The near-infrared range affects your health in a number of important ways,18 primarily through its interaction with chromophores in your body. Chromophores are molecules that absorb light, found in your mitochondria and in water molecules. To make sure the near-infrared rays can penetrate your skin, avoid wearing clothing when using a near-infrared sauna.

In your mitochondria, there’s a specific light-absorbing molecule called cytochrome c oxidase (cco), which is part of the mitochondrial electron transport chain and absorbs near-infrared light around 830 nm. Cco is involved in the energy production within the mitochondria. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) — cellular energy — is the end product. ATP is the fuel your cells need for all of their varied functions, including ion transport, synthesizing and metabolism.

Most people don’t realize that light is an important and necessary fuel just like food.  When your bare skin is exposed to near-infrared light, cco will increase ATP production. It is also important to understand that near-infrared light is healing and repairing, and helps optimize many other biological functions. Its absence in artificial light sources like LEDs and fluorescents is what makes these light sources so dangerous to your health.

We now know that mitochondrial dysfunction is at the heart of most health problems and chronic diseases, including many signs of aging. For these reasons, I strongly recommend using a sauna that offers a full spectrum of infrared radiation, not just far-infrared. Regular exposure to near-infrared through the sun and/or sauna is a powerful strategy to improve your health.

Also beware of the fact that most infrared saunas emit dangerous non-native EMFs. So, look for one that emits low or no non-native EMFs. To learn more about this issue, please see my interview with Steve Benda, who has spent many years developing low-EMF saunas. After searching for a long time, I finally found a near perfect full-spectrum infrared sauna that I hope to have made to my customized specifications in a few months, so stay tuned for this exciting development.

Be Mindful of Mineral Depletion When Frequently Sweating

Dr. Lawrence Wilson has written an excellent book, “Sauna Therapy,” which is the best resource I have read to date on sauna use.19 As a nutritional consultant, Wilson recommends not spending more than 20 minutes in a near-infrared lamp sauna unless you’re also on a nutritional balancing program.

The reason for this is because the near-infrared can produce profound changes in your body chemistry. While most of these changes will be beneficial, if you have very unbalanced mineral ratios you could potentially worsen the problem.

My staff writer, whom I mentioned earlier, experienced this problem as well. After several weeks of regular sauna use, she developed symptoms suggestive of a magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is one of the minerals that are more rapidly depleted when you sweat a lot.

The symptoms, which included a persistent “thick” headache and muscle spasms, began to dissipate within 15 minutes of taking an extra-large dose of magnesium, and disappeared completely after two days of upping her magnesium dosage.

Many other minerals can also be lost through sweating. To replace lost minerals, Wilson recommends taking kelp and using a high-quality natural (unprocessed) salt in your cooking. My preference is Himalayan salt in combination with magnesium as most of us are deficient in magnesium.

Wilson also provides instructions for how to build your own near-infrared sauna. If you currently have a far-infrared tent sauna, you could simply add one or two 10-watt infrared heat lamps as these types of bulbs emit near- and mid-infrared radiation. If you have a larger wooden sauna you could use a few 250-watt heat lamp bulbs. You could also add a small air purifier that produces negative ions that further enhances sauna benefits.

I have been taking an early morning 30-minute infrared sauna nearly daily for the last six months and enjoying swimming in my unheated pool afterwards, which at this time of the year is below 50 degrees, providing over a 120-degree contrast. But I feel great after I get out of the pool.

For men considering this regimen, I would caution them to protect their testes by holding an ice pack near their scrotum while they are in the sauna, as the testes weren’t designed for these types of high temperatures and there are some reports of impaired fertility in men who use sauna regularly.

Overall, regular sauna therapy, especially full-spectrum, near-, mid- and far-infrared low EMF sauna, can be a powerful adjunct to optimize your health through eliminating toxins and recharging your body with regenerating red and infrared wavelengths that energize your mitochondria and charge your water cellular battery.

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Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts

Optimum Nutritional supplements regarding Cardiovascular Health

Dr Jay Wilkins

By Dr. Mercola

Alzheimer’s disease has grown to be one of the most pressing and tragic public health issues facing the U.S. With no known cure and the number of people affected expected to triple by 2050, the Alzheimer’s Association estimates that by mid-century someone in the U.S will develop Alzheimer’s disease every 33 seconds.1

In the documentary above, “Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts,” you can see firsthand the steep social and economic consequences of this disease, along with its ability to completely overwhelm not only the patient but also their caregivers. Families dealing with this disease are families in crisis.

“This ‘tsunami’ of Alzheimer’s will not only be a profound human tragedy, but an overwhelming economic one as well. Due to the length of time people live with the illness and need care, it’s the most expensive medical condition in the U.S.,” the film’s website explains, adding:2

“Future costs for Alzheimer’s threaten to bankrupt Medicare, Medicaid and the life savings of millions of Americans. It is estimated that if the number of patients triples as projected in the years ahead, the costs to care for them will exceed $1.1 trillion.”

Roles of Mother and Daughter Reversed

Via three featured personal stories, the documentary takes you into the lives of those living with the realities of Alzheimer’s every day. Aside from the emotional and physical toll, many struggle to pay for the long-term care this disease requires, while others are isolated in rural communities without access to care at all.

There, simply “the risk of wandering off can be fatal,” the film poignantly points out. While Alzheimer’s disease is typically diagnosed in people aged 65 and over (5.2 million of the 5.4 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease are 65 or older), about 200,000 people have younger-onset Alzheimer’s.3

This is also addressed in the film, via the story of Daisy Duarte, the full-time caregiver for her mother Sonia, who was diagnosed with a genetic form of early-onset Alzheimer’s five years ago. “Daisy also carries the gene, so she is witnessing her own future as she cares for her mother,” the film explains.

Daisy is taking part in a clinical trial of an experimental drug to see if it changes the outcome of the genetic mutation, which, according to the film, virtually guarantees she’ll develop early-onset Alzheimer’s like her mother.

As the years pass, Daisy watches her mother lose the ability to help around the house, feed herself or shower. She also can no longer identify her daughter. With her mother now virtually helpless and unable to take care of her basic needs, the role of mother and daughter have been reversed.

Struggles to Place Loved Ones in Memory Care Facilities

Rick Shannon of Tampa, Florida, also shared his story caring for his mother Phyllis, who has Alzheimer’s.

In the state of Florida, a region that draws retirees from across the U.S., an estimated 510,000 people are living with the disease. This is expected to increase to 720,000 by 2025.4

Phyllis has lived alone since her husband died seven months earlier, a living situation that becomes increasingly unsafe as the disease progresses. Family members have found her wandering off near the edge of a pond and nearly starting fires while cooking.

Shannon grapples with feelings of guilt and financial hardship in placing his mother in an assisted living facility that specializes in caring for people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, at costs of $4,000 to $6,000 a month.

Neither Medicare nor private health insurance pays for the type of care Phyllis and many other Alzheimer’s patients need.

Patients must typically exhaust their life savings before applying for help from Medicaid. The state then determines how much money will be devoted to long-term care programs. When enough funding isn’t available, patients are added to waiting lists that may go on for five years.

Others living with Alzheimer’s end up in emergency rooms for medical care, often unable to give doctors any details about their condition or symptoms. As a result, extensive diagnostic tests are required to figure out what’s going on with the patient. The film noted:

“Every test adds to the cost, and the workups are complicated by the fact that almost every patient with Alzheimer’s also has many other health issues …

People with Alzheimer’s are admitted to the hospital twice as often as people the same age without Alzheimer’s. Their costs for hospital admissions are almost three times as high.

They tend to stay longer and be readmitted more often. Hospital care is the most expensive part of the health care system. Since the majority of Alzheimer’s patients are over 65, they’re mostly covered by federal dollars through Medicare.”

It’s estimated that 1 out of every 5 Medicare dollars currently goes toward Alzheimer’s care, and this is expected to increase to 1 out of every 3 in coming years. Adding to the costs, the stress of caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s often sends caregivers into emergency rooms as well.

In cases where the caregivers are admitted to the hospital, their loved one with Alzheimer’s may also be admitted because they have nowhere else to go. In desperation, some families even drop off their relatives with Alzheimer’s outside of emergency rooms, knowing they will be admitted.

Also speaking to the enormity of the problem, the Alzheimer’s Association operates 24-hour helplines with phones that virtually never stop ringing. 

Rural Alzheimer’s Patients Face Unique Struggles

In rural New Hampshire, the film follows family doctors struggling to care for Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers with limited resources. About 40 percent of people with memory problems in the state live alone.

Many struggle with fears of losing their independence, but have no access to the specialized services or even hospitals or public transportation to get medical care. Shortages of doctors and facilities to care for Alzheimer’s patients are widespread in New Hampshire, leaving such patients with limited or no options.

The area’s long winters pose another hazard, especially since 6 of every 10 Alzheimer’s patients will wander at some point. State fish and wildlife officers may be called to search for lost patients.

Lack of funding for Alzheimer’s care is a problem not only in New Hampshire but at a federal level. The film calls for increased awareness and federal funding for Alzheimer’s research, noting that out of the top 10 disease causes of death, Alzheimer’s is the only one with no survivors and no way to stop the progression of the disease.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH), for instance, spends $5 billion a year on cancer research, $3 billion on HIV/AIDs research and $2 billion on cardiovascular research, but far less on Alzheimer’s research, while related deaths increase.

What Are the Underlying Causes of Alzheimer’s Disease?

It’s often said that the underlying causes of Alzheimer’s disease are unknown, but there are numerous theories. The accumulating research that suggests Alzheimer’s disease may have an infectious component is becoming too plentiful to ignore. In addition to viruses, bacteria and fungus, an infectious protein called TDP-43, which behaves like infectious proteins known as prions, has also been linked to the disease.

Research presented at the 2014 Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) also revealed Alzheimer’s patients with TDP-43 were 10 times more likely to have been cognitively impaired at death than those without.5

Mounting research also suggests Alzheimer’s disease is intricately connected to insulin resistance; even mild elevation of blood sugar is associated with an elevated risk for dementia.6 Diabetes and heart disease also elevate your risk, as all three conditions are rooted in insulin resistance.

Arterial stiffness (atherosclerosis) is even associated with a hallmark process of Alzheimer’s, namely the buildup of beta-amyloid plaque in your brain.7

From his research, Dr. David Perlmutter, author of “Grain Brain” and “Brain Maker,” has concluded that Alzheimer’s disease is primarily predicated on lifestyle choices and, in a nutshell, anything that promotes insulin resistance, like a processed food diet, will ultimately also raise your risk of Alzheimer’s.

Is Alzheimer’s Disease Preventable?

It’s also often said that Alzheimer’s disease cannot be prevented, but there has been intriguing research that suggests there are certain factors you can control to help reduce your risk.

For instance, seniors with severe vitamin D deficiency may raise their risk for dementia by 125 percent, and vitamin D deficiency is associated with a substantially increased risk of all-cause dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.8 Sufficient vitamin D (50 to 70 nanograms/milliliter) is imperative for overall health, and likely, for brain health as well.

Exercise can also reduce your risk of the disease as well as help with treatment. In one study, patients diagnosed with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s who participated in a four-month-long supervised exercise program had significantly fewer neuropsychiatric symptoms associated with the disease than the control group that did not exercise.9

Lifestyle Strategies to Lower Your Risk

Until a medical breakthrough can develop a cure for this disease, prevention remains the best strategy to fight it. Diet is essential, and a combination of very little sugar and low net carbs, along with higher amounts of healthy fat is essential not only to address not only Alzheimer’s, but diabetes and heart disease as well.

My optimized nutrition plan can set you on the right path in this regard. In terms of your diet and other lifestyle factors, the following suggestions may be among the most important for Alzheimer’s prevention:

Replace processed foods with real foods

The vast majority of processed foods contain genetically engineered (GE) grains, which are heavily contaminated with glyphosate — an herbicide ingredient thought to be worse than DDT (DDT has already been linked to the development of Alzheimer’s).

Eating real food will also limit your exposure to trans fats. As a general rule, to avoid trans fats you need to avoid foods containing or cooked in partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.

Avoid sugar and refined fructose

Alzheimer’s appears to be intricately linked to insulin resistance. Ideally, you’ll want to keep your sugar levels to a minimum and your total fructose below 25 grams per day, or as low as 15 grams per day if you have insulin/leptin resistance or any related disorders.

Optimize omega-6-to-3 ratio, ideally should be 1-to-1 to 5-to-1

Healthy fats that your brain needs for optimal function include organically raised grass-fed meats, coconut oil, olives and olive oil, avocado, nuts, organic pastured egg yolks and butter made from raw grass-fed milk.

High intake of the omega-3 fats EPA and DHA are also helpful for preventing cell damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease, thereby slowing down its progression and lowering your risk of developing the disorder. It is imperative to also reduce industrial omega-6 oils such as soy, corn, sunflower and safflower oils.

Avoid gluten and casein (primarily wheat and pasteurized dairy, but don’t avoid raw dairy, such as whole milk and organic butter)

Research shows that your blood-brain barrier is negatively affected by gluten. Gluten also makes your gut more permeable, which allows proteins to get into your bloodstream, where they don’t belong. That then sensitizes your immune system and promotes inflammation and autoimmunity, both of which may play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s.

Cream is perhaps the most important part of raw milk because the cream is where all the energy is that’s needed to digest the milk protein casein. That’s why it’s important, if you consume dairy, to consume full-fat, raw dairy products instead of non-fat or skim dairy products.

The cream is also responsible for regulating the sugar absorption into your blood. It decreases the likelihood of insulin spikes.

Opt for organic, grass-fed and finished meat

The vast majority of all store-bought meats and meats served in restaurants come from CAFOs unless otherwise labeled as organic or grass-fed.

Optimize your gut flora

Regularly eat fermented foods or take a high potency and high-quality probiotic supplement.

Reduce your overall calorie consumption and/or intermittently fast

Ketones are mobilized when you replace carbs with coconut oil and other sources of healthy fats. Intermittent fasting is a powerful tool to jumpstart your body into remembering how to burn fat and repair the insulin/leptin resistance that is also a primary contributing factor for Alzheimer’s.

Improve your magnesium levels

Preliminary research strongly suggests a decrease in Alzheimer symptoms with increased levels of magnesium in the brain. Unfortunately, most magnesium supplements do not pass the blood-brain barrier. Magnesium threonate appears to, however, and holds some promise for the future for treating this condition and may be superior to other forms.

Get plenty of folate

Vegetables, without question, are your best form of folate, and we should all eat plenty of fresh raw veggies every day. Avoid folic acid supplements, which are the inferior synthetic version of folate.

Exercise regularly

It’s been suggested that exercise can trigger a change in the way amyloid precursor protein is metabolized, thus slowing down the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s. Exercise also increases levels of the protein PGC-1alpha.

Research has shown that people with Alzheimer’s have less PGC-1alpha in their brains and cells that contain more of the protein produce less of the toxic amyloid protein associated with Alzheimer’s.10

Avoid and eliminate mercury from your body

Dental amalgam fillings, which are 50 percent mercury by weight, are one of the major sources of heavy metal toxicity, however you should be healthy prior to having them removed. Once you have adjusted to following the diet described in my optimized nutrition plan, you can follow the mercury detox protocol and then find a biological dentist to have your amalgams removed.

Avoid and eliminate aluminum from your body

Sources of aluminum include antiperspirants, non-stick cookware, vaccine adjuvants and aluminum beverage cans. For tips on how to detox aluminum, please see my article, “First Case Study to Show Direct Link Between Alzheimer’s and Aluminum Toxicity.”

Avoid flu vaccinations

Many contain both thimerosal, which is 50 percent mercury, and aluminum, well-known neurotoxic and immunotoxic agents.

Avoid anticholinergics and statin drugs

Drugs that block acetylcholine, a nervous system neurotransmitter, have been shown to increase your risk of dementia. These drugs include certain nighttime pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids, certain antidepressants, medications to control incontinence and certain narcotic pain relievers.

Statin drugs are particularly problematic because they suppress the synthesis of cholesterol, deplete your brain of coenzyme Q10 and neurotransmitter precursors and prevent adequate delivery of essential fatty acids and fat-soluble antioxidants to your brain by inhibiting the production of the indispensable carrier biomolecule known as low-density lipoprotein.

Challenge your mind daily

Mental stimulation, especially learning something new, such as how to play an instrument or speak a new language, is associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s. Researchers suspect that mental challenge helps to build up your brain, making it less susceptible to the lesions associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

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Have a look at Nitric Oxide Supplements and Heart fitness

Perilla May Help Allergy Sufferers

Learn more about Wellness supplements to Support a Healthy Cardiovascular system

Perilla frutescens is an Asian plant that is used in Cardio Cocktail because it is high in Omega 3 fatty acids. Rather than using fish oil which has had some problems with contamination, the makers of Cardio Cocktail decided to use a plant based Omega 3 oil, Perilla frutescens(perilla).  Now researchers are finding that there … Continue reading "Perilla May Help Allergy Sufferers"

Recommended supplements needed for Heart Health and wellbeing!

Keeping Your Brain Sharp

Find out about Wellness supplements to Support a Fit Cardiovascular system

Strengthen your memory skills to increase your memory capacity. While it may seem that there is nothing you can do to strengthen your memory as you age, there are actually a number of strategies that can help. The worse strategy is to do nothing. That being said, don’t stress out about forgetful moments from time … Continue reading "Keeping Your Brain Sharp"

Optimum supplements relating to Cardiovascular Fitness!

Another Reason to Include Vitamin D

If there’s one supplement that seems to be in the news a lot these days it’s vitamin D3. This vitamin is becoming more and more prized by the scientific community. While the research looks promising many individuals are unaware of the benefits of vitamin D3.

Vitamin D3 is usually obtained from being out in the sun. Our bodies make vitamin D3 naturally. But if you use sunscreen, and limit your time out in the sun your production of vitamin D3 will be minimal. Scientist are well aware of vitamin D3’s benefits. All the way from having a healthy immune system to cardiovascular care, this is one supplement you do not want to be without. Now there’s an extra reason to make sure you enough vitamin D.

Find out what Dr. Oz is saying about this important supplement.

Dr. Oz Says C-Reactive Protein and Vitamin D Plans Take 10 Years Off – CMR

CMRDr. Oz Says C-Reactive Protein and Vitamin D Plans Take 10 Years OffCMRDr. Oz, April 16, 2013, starts off by saying that our real age is different from our actual age because we have a lot of factors that take their toll on our body. Dr. Michael R …

Heart Supplement News

Nitric Oxide is a vital molecule made by your physical body that causes vasodilation (an enlargement of the internal diameter of arteries). This creates an improved blood circulation through out the human body allowing for oxygen transport, delivery of nutritional elements to skeletal muscle and a reduction in blood pressure. An amino acid compound called arginine may boost short-term Nitric Oxide amounts. Individuals taking arginine have noted a rise in resilience and enhanced endurance.

So who needs nitric oxide?

Everyone needs nitric oxide to perform essential procedures in the body. From a bodybuilder’s view, nitric oxide supplementation may prove useful in increasing muscle development due to an increases in blood flow to particular areas of the body. Further, men suffering from impotence problems may also discover supplementing with nitric oxide useful.  One sign of deficiency is the inability to reach and keep an erection.  Other signs can be  physical weakness and severe fatigue.

What are the side effects?

With any amino acid including arginine, overdose is possible. Dosing with too much arginine can cause diarrhoea, weakness and nausea. Clear dosing instructions have not been proven, so it is better to do what is referred to as “forbearance mapping”. Take a little dosage for one week, note the benefits and the unwanted effects, and increase the serving till the benefits are maximized and the side effects minimized. Over time you will hit the optimal dosage.

Washington Times and erectile dysfunction

It’s interesting to note that in an article in the Washington Times they mention arginine as a nonprescription alternative to erectile dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction can be the first warning sign for men regarding cardiovascular disease. If blood flow is being impeded to one part of the body you can rest assure its being impeded in other parts of the body. You’ll be happy to know that each serving of cardio 5000 contains 5 g of arginine. This is more than enough to supply your body what it needs to produce nitric oxide. If you’re interested in other nonprescription treatments for erectile dysfunction check out the article in the Washington Times.

Erectile dysfunction: Four non-prescription treatment options – Washington Times, 25 Apr 2013 18:10:13 GMT

Washington TimesErectile dysfunction: Four non-prescription treatment optionsWashington TimesL-arginine is an amino acid necessary in the manufacture of nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is an important factor in vascular health and the regulation of blood …


Too Much Sun?

Worried about getting too much sun? New research coming from the BBC is indicating that more time in the sun can be healthy. In fact, they believe the benefits outweigh the risk. Find out more about the benefits of Sun exposure in the BBC article below.

Sun’s blood pressure benefits ‘may outdo cancer risks’ – BBC News, 08 May 2013 10:00:42 GMT

BBC NewsSun’s blood pressure benefits ‘may outdo cancer risks ‘BBC NewsProduction of the pressure-reducing compound, nitric oxide, is separate from the body’s manufacture of vitamin D, which rises after exposure to sunshine. Researchers said that unti …


Whats Wrong with The Mummy Study

Whats Wrong with The Mummy Study

If you believe the latest news in heart disease, then heart disease is something you will just have to live with or should I say die with.  Studies coming from CT scans that were done on a 137 mummies reveal that 34 percent of them had atherosclerosis, hardening of the arteries.  Since this study involved a wide range of different cultural groups, coming from ancient Egyptians to ancient Peruvians, the researchers concluded that heart disease is just a problem of aging and has not much to do with diet.  They made this conclusion on the basis that they used different cultures, which would have different diets.

The Question that Needs to be Asked.

So what is wrong with this assumption?  In order to make that conclusion the mummies would have to reflect the diet and lifestyle of those living at the time.  So, do these mummies really represent the populace of their time? I would have to say no.  For the most part it was the rich or ruling class that were mummified.  These are the ones that have been preserved down to our modern day and these are the ones that are being looked at.  Would it be correct to say that they reflect the eating habits of the people of their time?  I highly doubt it.

Basically, what this study tells us is quite the opposite of what they have concluded.  In my humble opinion it says just the opposite.  A diet and lifestyle that is unrestrained will lead to heart disease and death.  Why do I say that?  For the most part the rich and ruling class have always had a lifestyle that has been unrestrained, and it is this type of living that leads to heart disease.

Research which has been done by Dr. Dean Ornish and other medical professionals has shown that a reversal in diet and lifestyle modifications can have a huge impact on your cardiovascular health.  According to the American Heart Association lifestyle changes, which would include your diet, are your best defense against heart disease.  They focus on three areas of life, pollution like tobacco, exercise or being active, and choosing good nutrition.  Time and time again these are the suggestions that are the foundation for having a healthy heart.

My Doctor Says Medication

Many good meaning physicians have recommended statin drugs to improve the cardiovascular health of their patients.  The truth is Statins are a drug and require your blood to be monitored regarding their toxicity.  However, there is no doubt about it, statin drugs do lower cholesterol. The question that comes up regarding Statins, is that the reason why they are effective?  Statin drugs also reduce inflammation and it is inflammation that most researchers recognize as the real cause of heart disease. So why is the body inflamed.  Inflammation is a result of either one or two things.  To put it simply, inflammation is brought about by either damaged tissue or an allergic reaction.

Before Medication

There are healthy supplements that can help with your cardiovascular health.  We use a supplement called Cardio 5000.  We have seen first hand, using a dpa machine the benefits of this supplement.  If you measure your arterial elasticity with a dpa machine then take a serving of Cardio 5000 and wait about 15 to 20 minutes you will see an improvement in your arterial elasticity.  The company is so confident of their product that they invite people to try it for three months and if their is no improvement in your cardiovascular health they will provide a refund.

Vaccine Risks Report

Quote from Report: "It is stunning to realize what kinds of left-over,decomposing particles are all compounded into a needle and injected into the innocent bodies of young children. If the public, especially parents, knew what these ingredients were and what they were capable of, there would be a very high demand of accountability! These ingredients should be listed on school immunization forms! Wouldn’t that make a difference?!"

This 23 page special Vaccine Risks Report is an easy-to-read "Adobe PDF" file that you will download to you computer instantly with one click. Your bank or credit card statement will show a charge by ClickBank or CLKBANK*COM.
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Arginine Benefits

As reported on this website L. Arginine has many benefits for our health.  The video below gives some nice information about Arginine and why this supplement can be so important, not only for cardiovascular health, but for ones over all health.  I hope you enjoy the video as well as the article.

Arginine | Fortitech, Inc.

Arginine is synthesized in the body from glutamic acid. Although it is not an essential amino acid, it is frequently referred to as a conditionally-essential amino acid. The body requires substantially greater amounts of arginine

 Arginine Benefits Diabetics

Here is another post about the benefits of Arginine when it comes to diabetic care.   Rather than taking Arginine internally, a cream is used improve dry skin and stimulate blood flow.


WLWT Cincinnati’s Channel 5 – Foot care tips for diabetics can save a limb – Diabetes Awareness – WLWT Home

Learn How To Control Your High Blood PressureLook for moisturizing creams containing L-Arginine. L-Arginine helps stimulate healthy blood flow to heal dry, cracked skin. This special cream is available only in the diabetic section of your favorite drugstore or superstore. Under no circumstances should you shave or attempt to remove calluses or corns.