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May Issue of Natural Alternatives
April 29, 2011

Natural Alternatives for Your Total Health

May 2011

Hello, and welcome to this edition edition of my Natural Alternatives Newsletter!

I hope you will enjoy reading this issue.

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“The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest force in getting well.” ~Hippocrates








A new paper demonstrates that consuming genetically modified (GM) food leads to significant organ disruptions in rats and mice. Researchers reviewed data from 19 studies and found that parameters including blood and urine biochemistry and organ weights were significantly disrupted in the GM-fed animals. The kidneys of males were the most affected, experiencing 43.5 percent of all the changes. The livers of females followed at more than 30 percent. Other organs may have been affected too, including the heart and spleen, and blood cells. According to the Institute for Responsible Technology:

"The GM soybean and corn varieties used in the feeding trials 'constitute 83 percent of the commercialized GMOs' that are currently consumed by billions of people. While the findings may have serious ramifications for the human population, the authors demonstrate how a multitude of GMO-related health problems could easily pass undetected through the superficial and largely incompetent safety assessments that are used around the world."

Further, the biotechnology firm Monsanto is only an FDA approval away from its latest monstrosity -- soybeans that have been genetically modified to produce omega-3 fats. That FDA approval is expected this year.

Monsanto plans to include GM soybean oil in every product it can -- baked goods, baking mixes, breakfast cereals, cheeses, frozen dairy desserts, pasta, gravies and sauces, fruit juices, snack foods, candy, soups, and more.

According to Forbes:

"Monsanto is so despised by environmentalists that Google's first suggested search term for the St. Louis company is 'Monsanto evil.' Readers ... voted Monsanto the world's most evil corporation in a January poll, giving the corporation a whopping 51 percent of the vote." Scientists have also introduced human genes into 300 dairy cows in a process that they say will cause the cows to produce milk with the same properties as human breast milk. They believe that this could provide an alternative to formula milk for babies.

Critics of GM technology questioned the safety of milk from genetically modified animals, and also its potential effect on the cattle's health.

According to the Telegraph:

"The researchers used cloning technology to introduce human genes into the DNA of Holstein dairy cows before the genetically modified embryos were implanted into surrogate cows ... [T]he researchers said they were able to create cows that produced milk containing a human protein called lysozyme."
Sources:   Environmental Sciences Europe March 1, 2011
  Institute for Responsible Technology April 7, 2011
  Forbes April 11, 2011
  The Telegraph April 2, 2011
  PLoS One March 16, 2011; 6(3):e17593  

By Frank Mangano

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the world. The disease is primarily caused by the mutation of the gene that controls the behavior of cells and makes them lose their natural ability to self-destruct. The uncontrollable behavior of cancer cells can spread through the lymphatic system or the blood stream and invade neighboring tissues. Cancer tumors start to form in certain parts of the body when cancer cells accumulate and form a malignant tissue.

Studies had shown that cancer can be prevented. Although the tendency of developing cancer is a genetic characteristic that may vary in different levels depending on the person's hereditary traits, cancer is a disease that can be induced by certain habits and other environmental factors. The other risk factors of cancer includes smoking, aging, high alcohol consumption, exposure to x-rays, radon gas and other ionizing radiation, exposure to carcinogenic chemicals, bacterial and viral infection, like in the case of cervical cancer,  and poor nutrition and lack of exercise.

In terms of diet, different studies had found that certain foods like burnt meat and foods that are high in saturated fats can increase the risk of developing cancer. But other studies also show that cancer can be highly preventable through the intake of foods that contain compounds that exhibit strong anti-cancer properties. Good examples of which are as follows:


Different studies have proven that berries are one of the most nutritious and health beneficial foods. The three most popular types of berries are blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. Berries, in general, are rich in antioxidant that helps in reducing the risk of developing cancer by protecting the cells from the damage caused by oxidative stress. Although berries also showcase other potential health benefits, its ability to reduce cancer risk is the common subject of most clinical and animal studies.

Berries contain an antioxidant phytonutrient called ellagic acid that prevents cell membrane damage caused by free radicals. They also contain flavonoids which are often classified as anthocyanins that give red berries their color. Protecting the cells, especially the cell membrane, is essential in reducing cancer risk. Studies conducted on animals using the compounds found in berries show potential in inhibiting the proliferation of cancer cells and the formation of malignant tumors in different parts of the body.

A study published in a science journal Biofactors show that raspberries contain over 50 percent more antioxidants than strawberries, ten times than tomatoes and 3 times the antioxidant content in kiwis. Raspberries are found to have stronger antioxidant properties than other berries due to its superior ellagitannin content.


Broccoli is considered as the food with the strongest anti-cancer abilities. The cruciferous vegetable contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds that helps in maintaining the proper behavior of cells. The human body has the natural ability to create inflammatory substances as a response to infection and the invasion of toxic substances. But constant exposure to these health threats tends to over-trigger the inflammatory system and result to cellular damage. The body begins to lose its ability to detoxify and naturally remove toxins and other harmful materials from the body. The accumulation of these substances leads to a high risk of developing cancer.

In addition, the constant onset of inflammatory responses can alter important metabolic processes including the disruption in normal oxygen metabolism which can lead to oxidative stress. And broccoli, for that matter, has one of the strongest anti-inflammatory properties amongst its peers. It contains glucosinates that produces isothiocyanates in the body that helps in shutting the machinery that triggers inflammation. Broccoli is also a rich source of omega-3 that helps in controlling the activation of the inflammatory system and other antioxidants that aids in clearing free radicals and the debris of inflammation.


Garlic is a common fixture in kitchens and is a staple ingredient in most dishes. This makes it easier to harness the benefits of garlic in fighting cancer. This allium vegetable contains allyl sulfides that help in keeping the cells efficiently and properly responsive to oxidative stress. Cells are genetically programmed to engage in a process called apoptosis in such a ways that they practically commit suicide when it has observed that it has been too compromised to stay properly functioning in a healthy environment. The ability of allyl sulfide in activating this response in practical application is the subject of different studies. And as far as previous study results can provide, garlic can reduce the risk of developing certain cancer through its proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.


Spinach are rich in manganese, folate, vitamin A, iron, vitamin C, riboflavin or vitamin B2,  dietary fiber, vitamin E and a lot more nutrients – and all these have probably made Popeye the strong hero that he was. But in real life, spinach has demonstrated various health benefits including the prevention of cancer. The green leafy vegetable is packed with phytonutrients that has been found by different studies to be potent anti-cancer compounds. Phytonutrients primarily reduce the risk of developing cancer by scavenging harmful free radicals and preventing oxidative stress. Spinach also has anti-inflammatory properties that prevent cancer by battling its root cause.

Red Cabbage

The pigmentation of red cabbage that gives it its color is the anthocyanin polyphenols. These group of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds helps in protecting the cells from gene damage and preventing the development of cancer. A study on red cabbage shows that its glucosinolate compound can prevent a variety of cancers including prostate cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer and bladder cancer. It also contains omega-3 fatty acids, folate, manganese, dietary fiber and magnesium – all of which are strong cancer-fighting nutrients.


The lycopene content of tomatoes had received most of the credits in its ability to prevent cancer. The carotenoid content of tomatoes, the pigment that gives it its red color, had been the subject of different studies, of which most have come to the conclusion that the nutrient in tomatoes can reduce the risk of developing cancer. And unlike other antioxidants, most of the studies on tomatoes were done in humans and were not limited to lab animals. A long-term study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, for example, showed that a diet rich in tomatoes can reduce prostate cancer risk.


An orange's strongest contribution in the fight against cancer is its high content of vitamin C. The nutrient, which is also present in other fruits and vegetables, is a strong antioxidant that has the ability to prevent cancer and other diseases by eliminating free radicals in the body and thereby reducing oxidative damage that may promote the development of abnormal behavior in cells. Oranges are also rich in dietary fiber that aids in lowering the LDL cholesterol levels in the blood – a known risk factor for certain cancers.



The best way to experience the healing properties of herbs is by drinking herbal teas. They can easily be found in grocery stores or you can also make them on your own. Most of the top healing herbal teas made from herbs that are very easy to find. Some of them can even be found right in your kitchen. If you own an herb garden then all you have to do is learn how to dry the herbs properly, although you can also use fresh herbs to make tea. But if otherwise, fresh herbs can easily be bought from whole food groceries and greenhouses, even the exotic ones.

When deciding on making herbal teas from scratch, it is preferable to use organic herbs. These are the herbs that had not been treated with any chemical fertilizers and insecticides. Besides being free of chemicals that may affect the healing properties of tea, organic herbs also have the best flavor and aroma. Drying the herbs gives them a longer shelf life. In the process of drying, make sure that no fungi accumulate on the herbs. Once they have completely dried, you can crush them manually and store them in a tightly sealed jar. Almost all herbs can be made into a hot piping cup of tea.

Here are seven of the most beneficial herbal teas that you can choose from.
1.Chamomile Chamomile has been traditionally used to treat and cure certain health conditions. The herb comes from a fragrant flowering plant member of the daisy family. Chamomile tea is either brewed using dried or fresh chamomile. It contains bisabolol that possesses anti-inflammatory, anti-irritant and antimicrobial properties. Chamomile herbal tea is used to treat different illnesses including muscle twitches, panic attacks and anxiety, sleeping disorders like insomnia, scrapes, burns, wounds, eczema, psoriasis, diaper rash, chicken pox, stomach flu, menstrual cramps, and ulcers.

For people suffering from insomnia, drinking a cup of chamomile tea a few minutes before bedtime can help encourage sleep and treat sleeplessness. Other than its healing properties, chamomile tea can also help in lightening your skin tone and in reducing dark circles around the eyes. Simply boil a few cups of water with at least two bags of chamomile tea for a soothing steaming on the face. Make sure to keep enough distance between your face and the pot to avoid burns. You can also soak in bath water mixed with chamomile tea. The tea bags can serve as an eye pack for removing the dark circles around the eyes.


Meat and pasta dishes taste great when seasoned with thyme. But more than its delicious taste, the aromatic herb has been used throughout history as a medicine for respiratory and chest problems. Studies show that thyme contains an oil called thymol which has strong disinfectant and antiseptic properties. This makes it potent in healing respiratory problems like asthma and bronchitis. The herb also helps in expelling parasites in the body. You can either take a teaspoon of chopped thyme mixed with honey or drink it as a tea to experience its healing benefits.

Freshly brewed thyme tea can also help in easing PMS and menstrual cramps. It helps in the digestion of the food and removes excess mucus from the digestive tract. Planting thyme herbs in your garden is one way of repelling mosquitoes and other unwanted insects. The active ingredients of thyme include a variety of flavonoids like naringenin, apigenin, luteilin and thymonin, and minerals such as calcium, manganese, fiber and iron.


Sage tea is particularly popular in Asia and the Mediterranean. The herb is usually used as an extract, infusion, spice and poultice. Sage essential oil is used as a stimulant and carminative.  It is easy to make sage tea from fresh leaves. Simply leave an infusion of sage leaves, lemon and honey in a pot of boiling water for no less than thirty minutes. Strain the leaves off and you have your sage tea. You can be generous with the ratio of the leaves to the water. The herbal tea has been traditionally used to treat minor disorders like inflammations of the tonsils, throat and mouth. It's an effective remedy for fevers with delirium, nervous system excitement, typhoid fever, kidney trouble, liver problems, measles and common colds. Sage tea had also been found to help digestion and relieve joint pains.


Rosemary has been used for medicinal and culinary purposes since 500 BC; the herb is amongst one of the oldest cultivated herb. Drinking rosemary tea is one of the best ways to take advantage of the herb's health benefits. It contains various vitamins, powerful antioxidants and strong antiseptics that help in treating and preventing diseases. Rosemary tea contains rosmarinic acid and acetylcholine that helps in promoting healthy brain functions. These antioxidants help in maintaining the supply of choline in the brain which is important in reasoning and cognition.


Peppermint is a natural hybrid of spearmint. The herb contains different therapeutic and healing ingredients like menthyl acetate, menthone, menthol and more than forty other compounds. The refreshing flavor of peppermint tea makes it a good beverage option during hot weathers. The tea is traditionally used to treat irritable bowel syndrome, relieve nausea and vomiting, ease diverticular disorders and flatulence, dissolve gallstones, and relieve muscle pains. Drinking peppermint tea is also an effective way of soothing the body fighting stress.

6.Passion Flower

The passion plants bear edible fruits but it is most valued for its flowers. Dried passion flower is used as a sleep aid and a mild sedative. The herb has attracted the attention of researchers due to its rich phytochemical content. Studies show that passion flower tea can help in reducing and possibly treating anxiety. For people suffering from insomnia, drinking a cup of passion flower tea before bedtime is a great way to get the Z’s.

7.Lemon Balm Lemon balm tea helps in relieving restlessness and anxiety. The herb contains compounds that help in easing nervousness and tension. Choose dried or fresh lemon balm with a strong lemon mint scent.


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Thank you for reading.

Brampton, Ontario, Canada

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This newsletter is for educational purposes only. It is your right to educate yourself in health and medical knowledge, to seek helpful information and make use of it for your own benefit, and for that of your family. You are the one responsible for your health. You must educate yourself in order to make decisions in all health matters. My views and advices are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medicine, but simply a help you to make educated changes in order to help your body heal itself. If you have a medical condition or concern you should consult your physician.

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