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Your February Issue of Natural Alternatives
February 01, 2019

Natural Alternatives for Your Total Health

February 2019

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





4) UPCOMING NO COST ONLINE EVENTS (Medicinal Plants and Spirituality, Supercharge Your Chakras)


by Shaylini Somani

There is a wonderful healing quality to nature. Immersing ourselves in the rhythms and beauty of nature can provide for incredible healing and transformative experiences.

Ayurveda, the ancient healing tradition of India, recommends spending time in nature every day. Whether it’s taking time to smell the flowers, running through a wildflower field, hiking through a forest, strolling by a flowing stream, or watching the last few rays of the setting sun. These moments allow us to experience the wonder and unconditional abundance that nature bestows upon us. Nature enables us to reconnect with our inner selves and recognize that we are inextricably connected to the universe.

Physical, mental, emotional and spiritual components of our health and well-being are all rejuvenated and if imbalanced, then even healed by nature. Very instinctively and quite naturally we turn to outdoor, nature-loving activities as a way of relaxing and enhancing our well-being. When we plan our holidays, why is it that without a moments hesitation we turn to the great outdoors? Be it the beach, the mountains or the luscious green countryside? It is because our intuition, whether consciously or subconsciously guides us back to our true source. This is our universe at its most beautiful play, demonstrating that we are intimately connected with, embedded in, and inseparable from the rest of our existence.

Time spent outdoors can be restorative and healing. For many the outdoors is a source of inspiration, self-growth, solace, guidance and rejuvenation. When you’re next among nature, take a few moments to appreciate the freshness of the air, the colour of the sky, the chirping of the birds, the feel of the wind against your skin. Experience nature with all of your senses and somewhere from deep within, you will feel a sense of calmness pervade you. Let yourself be soothed by the healers of nature, one of the best prescriptions for our overall health, well-being and healing. As Hippocrates justly stated, “Nature cures, not the physician”.

Once we become consciously aware and tune into nature, we can begin to tap into its abundant healing powers. Begin to see mother nature as an ever-present, trusted close friend and guide, who is always there to share and heal our wounds in this journey of life.

Just like a mother, father or friend, nature is constantly providing us with an array of its own examples and teachings that can aid in our own healing. For example, nature provides beautiful instances of hope where there appears to be none through demonstrating that light follows darkness, sunshine follows rain and spring follows winter. The constancy of the seasons demonstrate stability when all else may be crumbling. Like the strong and sturdy tree, nature teaches us to remain grounded, strong and to stand tall through all of life’s obstacles. The grand and graceful tree teaches us of the beauty of change, adaptation and evolving gracefully no matter what the conditions. These wondrous examples are taught to us by nature as a reminder that through our hardships and triumphs, everything is momentary and that these moments too shall pass.

Even when we are in our deepest and most darkest of moments; nature demonstrates the capability that each of us has within us to empower ourselves to get up and continue. Nature displays strength and powerful regenerative capabilities to heal damage. When we look at the damage caused by fire, earthquakes, lightening and floods, one can find signs of new growth and new life among these calamities. Nature teaches us how to survive despite the strongest forces and challenge that we may face.

Looking to nature as our greatest teacher can be powerful and humbling. There is so much to learn from our existence, if only we stopped to look around us. Nature’s love for us is selfless, abundant and unconditional. It constantly gives so much without expecting anything in return. When we’re sweltering in the heat, we turn to the trees for shade, when we require darkness for sleep: nature provides nightfall, when we require warmth and heat we bask in the sun.

In the words of Einstein:
"Look deep, deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better"

The Author: Shaylini Somani is a qualified Reiki practitioner, columnist and feature writer, holistic health and well-being coach.


by Dr. Edward F. Group

Gaining popularity these days as a weight loss aid and natural healing agent, black cumin seed oil comes with a centuries-old wellness pedigree. Black cumin seeds were popular among the Egyptian pharaohs and were even found in King Tutankhamun’s tomb. Black cumin seed oil — sometimes called black seed oil — boosts the immune system, promotes balanced blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and wards off harmful organisms.The book of Isaiah in the Bible mentions cumin (caraway) seed, and reportedly, the Prophet Mohammed said, “Hold on to the use of the black seed for indeed it has a remedy for every disease except death.”

What Is Black Cumin Seed Oil?

Black cumin seeds come from the plant Nigella sativa, which is part of the buttercup family and native to countries throughout southern Europe and southern Asia. Some people call it black seed, caraway, or kalonji.

Black cumin seed oil comes from the seeds and is usually made by expeller pressing — basically, pressing the oil out of the seeds and discarding the pulp. This essential oil and the seeds are popular in several traditional medicine systems, from India’s Ayurveda to Islamic Tibb-e-Nabawi or “prophetic medicine.”The secret to black seed oil’s therapeutic powers may lie in its arsenal of phytochemicals. These naturally occurring compounds include:

Thymoquinone, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Thymohydroquinone, which naturally inhibits acetylcholinesterase, an enzyme that breaks down certain neurotransmitters. Physicians use pharmaceutical acetylcholinesterase for neurological diseases, and scientists are studying thymohydroquinone as a natural alternative.
Thymol, which is naturally antibacterial and antifungal.

Black cumin seed oil contains other active chemicals, including alkaloids, saponins, and fatty acids, such as linoleic acid and oleic acid, as well as nutrients like folate, calcium, iron, copper, zinc, phosphorus, proteins, and essential amino acids.

Black Cumin Seed Oil Benefits

The properties of black cumin seed oil make it a great natural remedy. From weight loss to lung health to immune system support, here are some of the top benefits you might see from using black seed oil.

Assists With Weight Loss

Black cumin seed oil is becoming an increasingly popular supplement for weight loss. A 2018 review of studies found that this oil appears to moderately reduce body weight, body mass index (BMI), and waist size. The seed has traditionally been used to stimulate appetite, but preliminary studies nevertheless show that — despite this — it helps people lose weight.

Promotes Heart Health

Several studies found that black cumin seed, in either oil or powder form, can help promote healthy cholesterol levels — especially the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol associated with heart disease.When people used black cumin seed oil and exercised, it was more effective at improving people’s lipid profile — balancing their cholesterol levels as well as triglyceride levels — compared with exercise alone.Overall, it appears that black seed oil can support your overall heart health and cardiovascular function.

Supports Normal Blood Pressure

Some studies demonstrate that black cumin seed oil can normalize blood pressure in people with mild hypertension. In one study, taking black cumin seed oil for two months effectively balanced blood pressure levels in healthy volunteers, without any harmful side effects.

Reduces Redness and Swelling

Black cumin oil appears to help reduce redness, swelling, and irritation inside the body, particularly in the joints. A review of animal studies and human clinical trials found that it may be a therapy for autoimmune diseases. For example, one study found that black cumin oil rubbed on the skin reduced swelling in the joints for people with rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disease that causes joint discomfort. When scientists gave rats with ulcerative colitis black cumin seed oil directly into their colon, the rats experienced normalized levels of inflammatory markers in their blood.

Discourages Abnormal Cell Growth

One scientific review found that black cumin seed oil’s antioxidants — specifically thymoquinone — had anti-carcinogenic properties. Specifically, thymoquinone inhibited tumor cell activity. In another study of cells in Petri dishes, thymoquinone slowed the growth and replication of glioblastoma brain tumor cells.

Protects Against Radiation

Black cumin seed oil may help reduce the damaging effects of radiation. Black cumin seed oil and its phytonutrients may protect against the oxidative stress and tissue injury caused by radiation. Multiple studies have found that these immune-system protecting effects extend to animals undergoing aggressive medical therapies involving radiation.Whether these effects apply to humans is unknown.

Encourages Normal Blood Sugar Levels

Black cumin seed oil has an incredible ability to help balance your blood sugar levels.Most studies focus on thymoquinone, the main phytonutrient in black seed oil, which might reduce glucose absorption in the intestine while supporting insulin production by the pancreas. Balancing blood sugar is critical for people with diabetes, prediabetes, or metabolic syndrome. However, even in healthy people, balancing your blood sugar helps you keep diseases at bay, maintain your energy, and reduce so-called oxidative stress in the body, which leads to aging.

Boosts the Immune System

The antioxidants and other beneficial compounds in black cumin seed oil may bolster the immune system. Several studies explore this effect in both animal and human models, including one study of rats that were over-exercised on a treadmill.Rats given black seed oil had a stronger immune system response immediately after the exercise compared to those who did not get it. People with autoimmune disorders may see greater benefits from black cumin seed oil than elderberry and echinacea.

Supports Lung Health

Black cumin seed oil’s soothing powers might make it a natural and complementary remedy for lung health. One study found Nigella sativa oil reduces airway inflammation and encouraged easy breathing.In another study of people with allergies, researchers found that the oil reduced nasal congestion, itching, runny nose, and sneezing.If you’re looking for other ways to breathe easier, check out our lung cleanse article.

Resists Harmful Organisms

The antimicrobial properties of black cumin seed oil make it effective for warding off a range of pathogens in the body, including fungal pests like Candida. A 2008 study found Nigella sativa resisted the dangerous methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection.[21] This activity against harmful organisms is a characteristic that black cumin seed oil shares with another oil that’s popular among natural health enthusiasts — oregano oil.

Supports Liver Function

The liver is the body’s main organ for detoxification. It breaks down many types of toxins from food, pharmaceuticals, and the environment that make their way into the bloodstream. It’s good to know that this important organ has an ally in black cumin seed oil. In one study of liver oxidative stress markers in rats, researchers found that the oil reduced liver disease complications and slowed its progression, helping to restore healthy liver function.

Improves Gut Health

Black cumin seed oil also aids digestion. Studies have found that Nigella sativa may increase mucus secretion in the gut, helping digestion run more smoothly and reducing the risk of stomach ulcers by slowing gastric acid secretion.The antioxidant properties of black seed oil may also help conditions like colitis.

Top 5 Uses for Black Seed Oil

You can make many of your own wellness remedies with top-quality organic black cumin seed oil. DIY (do-it-yourself) products reduce your exposure to harmful chemicals that are so prevalent in most commercial products.

Enhance Your Complexion

Several studies show that black cumin seed oil reduces redness and itching on the skin.[24, 25] The bacteria species, Propionibacterium acnes, feeds on dead skin cells, leading to more redness and irritation. Black cumin seed oil not only repels this harmful organism, it may also reduce scarring and improve your complexion. Black seed oil can generally be safely applied directly to the skin — in fact, some people like to dab a drop directly onto acne. I recommend testing a drop of the oil on your inner wrist to see if your skin shows any sensitivity first. If redness or swelling occurs, try diluting in a carrier oil like almond or coconut oil.

How to Use: For a homemade acne remedy, mix one tablespoon of black cumin seed oil with one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. First, apply a hot towel to your face to open the pores, then apply the mixture to your face. After 15 minutes, rinse your face with water.

Open Your Airways

Since black cumin seed oil may help you breathe easier, consider having this oil in your natural medicine cabinet. Reach for it to bring relief to your lungs, runny nose, or other breathing-related condition.

How to Use: For easier breathing, take 500 mg of black cumin seed oil twice daily for four weeks for relief.[26] For relief from seasonal allergies, apply one drop in each nostril three times a day.

Support Your Weight Loss Efforts

You might have heard stories about black cumin seed oil’s effectiveness as a weight loss aid. If you’re trying to reach a healthy body weight, consider mixing it into a beverage for easy sipping. For more ideas, check out our weight loss tips article.

How to Use: Add four to five drops of black cumin seed oil, one teaspoon honey, and a squeeze of lemon to a cup of warm water. Drink daily before breakfast.

Thicken the Look of Your Locks

Whether you are a man with a receding hairline or a woman with alopecia, black cumin seed oil may help prevent hair loss and support new hair growth.

How to Use: For a homemade all-natural hair loss treatment, combine one teaspoon black cumin seed oil with one teaspoon olive oil and massage into balding areas. Let sit for thirty minutes before shampooing. Test a small area of the scalp first to make sure you don’t develop an allergic reaction.

Round Out Your Nutrient Intake

This oil has so many health benefits — supporting weight loss, reducing gas and stomach bloating, immune system support, and heart and lung health — that it makes a great addition to your day as an all-purpose nutritional supplement. To ensure the highest quality, safest, and most effective oil, look for supplements that are certified-organic, GMO-free, pure pressed oils without chemical extraction, and with no additives. Look for packaging, such as dark-colored glass, that protects against rancidity.

How to Use: Take one teaspoon of black cumin seed oil once or twice daily. You can also mix one teaspoon of oil into a drink or smoothie.

Side Effects and Precautions

Remember, the chemical compounds in essential oils are very concentrated compared to how much you would find in powdered cumin spice. When used in small amounts as a food supplement, black cumin seed oil is quite safe for the long term. If you wish to take larger amounts, consult your healthcare provider, especially if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Discontinue use of black seed oil if you develop any of the following side effects:
Allergic rash
Upset stomach

For children, black cumin seed oil should only be used sporadically in recommended amounts. Because of the effect black cumin seed oil has on blood sugar, if you are diabetic, check with your doctor since its use lowers blood sugar and could lead to hypoglycemia. If you have low blood pressure, know that this supplement has the potential to lower it further.Discontinue use of black cumin seed oil two weeks before any scheduled surgery, since it may slow blood clotting.

Points to Remember

If you are looking for a natural way to address a particular health issue, or simply support overall health, black cumin seed oil is one of the most loved ancient natural remedies. Black cumin seed oil can promote normal blood pressure, manage blood sugar, support the immune system, soothe allergies and lung issues, and discourage infection.[29] You can use it for acne, hair growth, and to support weight loss and lung health. Make homemade DIY recipes with this amazing essential oil to create a healthier you. Black seed oil is generally safe to use for most people, so go ahead and see if this age-old cure makes a difference in your life.

The Author: Dr. Edward F. Group III (DC, ND, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM) founded Global Healing Center in 1998 with the goal of providing the highest quality natural health information and products. He is world-renowned for his research on the root cause of disease. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center earned recognition as one of the largest natural and organic health resources in the world. Dr. Group is a veteran of the United States Army and has attended both Harvard and MIT business schools. He is a best- selling author and a frequent guest on radio and television programs, documentary films, and in major publications.Dr. Group centers his philosophy around the understanding that the root cause of disease stems from the accumulation of toxins in the body and is exacerbated by daily exposure to a toxic living environment. He believes it is his personal mission to teach and promote philosophies that produce good health, a clean environment, and positive thinking. This, he believes, can restore happiness and love to the world.
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by Cathy Wong

Tai chi is a mind-body practice that involves a series of slow, flowing exercises that combine movement, meditation, and rhythmic breathing. Although it was initially developed as a martial art, it's commonly practiced as a form of "moving meditation." According to the principles of traditional Chinese medicine, tai chi's movements can help stimulate the flow of vital energy (also known as "chi") and, in turn, promote healing from a variety of health conditions.

Many practitioners of tai chi use this technique to enhance physical and mental health, as well as to improve posture, balance, flexibility, and strength. In addition, tai chi is said to boost mood, alleviate pain, strengthen the immune system, and improve heart health.

The Benefits of Tai Chi

In recent years, studies have shown that taking up tai chi may be beneficial to people with certain health conditions.

In a research review published in Canadian Family Physician in 2016, for example, researchers analyzed previously published studies and found "excellent evidence" that tai chi appears to helpful for Parkinson's disease, osteoarthritis, preventing falls, improving cognitive function in older adults, and rehabilitation for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Here's a look at several key findings from the available research on tai chi and its potential health benefits:

Cognitive Functioning

For a research review published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society in 2014, investigators sized up 20 previously published studies testing the effects of tai chi on cognitive function in older adults. The reviewed studies demonstrated that tai chi may have beneficial effects on cognitive function, particularly in older adults without existing cognitive impairment. The effect size in adults without cognitive impairment was large compared to no intervention and moderate when compared to exercise.

Preventing Falls in Older Adults

Tai chi may help older adults improve their balance and prevent falls, according to a research review published in the Journal of the American Geriatric Society. In their analysis of 10 previously published studies, the review's authors found that tai chi practiced for 12 to 26 weeks one to three times weekly reduced the incidence of falls by 43 percent (compared to other interventions) in those who were followed for 12 months or less. There was no effect of tai chi on the time until an older adult first has a fall.

Parkinson's Disease

Tai chi might benefit people with Parkinson's disease, suggests a research review published in Clinical Rehabilitation in 2018. After reviewing 10 previously published studies, the authors found that tai chi significantly reduced falls in people with Parkinson's disease and stroke. Tai chi also improved balance in those with Parkinson's disease.

More Benefits

Emerging research suggests that tai chi may also help treat several other health conditions, including back pain and cancer-related fatigue.

There's also some evidence that tai chi may be an effective cardiac rehabilitation method for people with chronic heart failure.

Safety and Side Effects

While tai chi appears to be safe for most healthy people (when done correctly), it should not be used as a substitute for standard care in the treatment of a chronic health condition. Also, if you have a health condition such as arthritis, it's important to consult your doctor before starting tai chi to see if it's appropriate for you.

How to Practice Tai Chi

Tai chi is frequently taught in groups in health centers, community centers, offices, and schools. You can also learn tai chi techniques from books, as well as from audio and video resources. However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health cautions that learning tai chi from a video or book does not ensure that you're doing the movements correctly or safely.

Pronunciation: tai-chee
Also Known As: t'ai chi, tai chi chuan, tai chi chih, tai ji juan, tai ji quan, taijiquan, tai ji, taiji, shadow boxing

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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 advises are not intended to be a substitute forconventional medicine, but simply a help you to make educated changesin order to help your body heal itself. If you have a medical condition or concern you should consult your physician.

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