Your liver is one of the most important organs in your body. Aside from your brain and heart, your liver controls the toxin levels in your body. Responsible for cleansing the blood and converting waste products, the liver also helps digest carbs and fats. Heavy alcohol consumption, heavy drug use, and poor diet are all factors in poor liver health. Poor liver function can lead to diabetes, hepatitis, and cirrhosis. While an overall healthy lifestyle and diet will keep your liver health in top shape, these 5 herbs can provide extra health benefits.
Several studies show that milk thistle helps protect the liver and is often suggested as a treatment for alcoholic hepatitis and alcoholic cirrhosis. Also known as silymarin, milk thistle is one of the most recommended herbs for liver ailments. Milk thistle has the ability to repair existing liver damage.
Another amazing herb is dandelion. Often prescribed alongside milk thistle or mixed with milk thistle, dandelion improves the health of the liver. Mostly found in capsules, teas, or bought in extracts, dandelions are rich in vitamins and minerals like iron, zinc, and potassium. Due to dandelion’s rich vitamin and mineral content, it helps the liver stimulate bile production.
A fairly unknown herb, burdock root is great for healthy liver function. It is a blood purifier and stimulates bile flow. Since it helps stimulate bile flow, this is great for people who already suffer from liver damage.
Most people know artichokes as a delicious vegetable. What many don’t realize is that artichoke is actually an herb. Also known as cynarin, this herb helps stimulate the flow and production of bile. Many who suffer from liver damage struggle with adequate bile flow and production. Another great side effect of an artichoke is that it reduces the risk of developing jaundice, as well as prevents the development of gallstones.
One of the most studied herbs, turmeric is extremely beneficial to liver health. Turmeric has the ability to reduce inflammation, which also includes inflammation related to the liver.
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like broccoli, cabbage, and kale contain a powerful and biologically active
antioxidant – glucoraphanin. Through a process called hydrolysis,
sulfur-containing glucoraphanin is metabolized into the biologically active
isothiocynate sulforaphane, which is associated with a variety of positive
effects stemming from its antioxidant activity.
For example, sulforaphane:
- Releases hydrogen sulfide when cooked, producing a cardioprotective effect similar to that of garlic
- Induces phase II enzymes, an important part of the body’s detoxification pathways
- Increases expression of antioxidant enzymes
- Exerts other protective antioxidant effects
Glucoraphanin is a
type of glucosinolate, a sulfur-containing compound associated with a pungent
aroma and spicy taste. Glucobrassicin and gluconastutin are two other types of
glucosinolates – differentiated by their amino acid composition – produced by
cruciferous vegetables like broccoli. When these glucosinolates go through
hydrolysis, they enter their biologically active form, then called
A novel antioxidant is a broccoli seed extract standardized to yield 13 percent glucoraphanin, which metabolizes to sulforaphane and activates Nrf-2 pathways to produce:
- Antioxidants for reducing oxidative stress
- Phase 2 enzymes, detoxifiers vital for the body’s natural detoxification process
Oxidative stress is a
process caused by free radicals – unstable molecules formed during both natural
body processes and from exposure to toxins. Activation of Nrf-2 pathways help
target harmful inflammation, thus limiting the extent and magnitude to which
Oxidative stress and unhealthy inflammation is often a primary cause for systemic imbalances in the human body. These imbalances are connected to conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.
The benefits of antioxidants:
Here’s just a few:
- Cellular nourishment and protection
- Naturally increase your energy level
- Assist your weight-loss efforts by reducing your appetite and improving your metabolism
- Reduce inflammation and help relieve your stiff joints and achy muscles
- Lower your risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke
- Protect your vision from age-related vision loss and blindness (ARMD)
- Help you maintain strong bones
- Support your immune function and increase your resistance to infections
- Reduce allergy symptoms without drowsiness
- Improve your mental acuity, protecting your mind and memory
- Detoxify toxic metals and chemicals
- Help slow aging of your skin and dulling of your hair
- Restore healthy digestion
- Inhibit the hardening of arteries
Smiling and laughter are beneficial for your mind, body and overall well-being. Smiling has well-documented social benefits. A genuine smile can make you seem more likable, attractive, intelligent and even trustworthy. But did you know that smiling more often—regardless of your mood—can improve your health and help you live longer?
Research has shown that there a number of health benefits contributed to smiling and laughing. In addition to improved health, these simple facial expressions and common human behaviors can have a distinctive positive affect on other factors all areas of your life. When you smile and laugh, a number of physiological changes occur in your body, mostly without you being consciously aware of it happening.
There are a variety of benefits from smiling, including some health benefits too:
Improved Mood- Smiling can boost your mood when you’re feeling blue, and may be beneficial for people struggling with anxiety and depression. Making yourself smile when you’re feeling down helps improve your mood and increases positive thoughts.
Lower Blood Pressure- Smiling and laughing more appear to help lower your blood pressure, which is good news for your heart health. Laughter causes an initial increase in heart rate, followed by a period of muscle relaxation and a decrease in heart rate and blood pressure, which helps reduce your risk of developing heart disease.
Stress Relief- As smiling can result in a lower heart rate, so the stress hormone cortisol is reduced. Cortisol is more active when we feel stressed or anxious and contributes to the unpleasant feelings. Stress generally causes increases in heart rate and blood pressure. So, maintaining a smile when stressed provides you with both psychological and physical health benefits.
Better Relationships- People who smile are perceived as being more likable than people who don’t smile. Being likable makes it easier to build and maintain better relationships with people, which is important for your overall health and well-being. So, keep a smile on your face to help create stronger, healthier social bonds.
Pain Relief- Smiling and laughter both have been shown to lessen pain. They release endorphins that lift our moods. Endorphins make us feel happier and less stressed. They also act as the body’s natural pain killers. For sufferers of chronic pain, laughing and smiling can be very effective in pain management.
Longevity- The effects of a good smile extend past just the exterior good looks. People who smile more often live longer too, around 7 years longer than most according to one study. It releases stress, helps the heart, and much more to keep you healthy longer.
Contagious- Smiling can be contagious! Around 50% of people smile back. This spreads the health benefits throughout those around you and it comes back to you several times as well.
Build Attraction- Smiling makes people more attractive. Smiling is an attractive expression, which is more likely to draw people to you rather than push them away. Smiling makes you appear more approachable.
Earn Success- A smile can appear confident, self-assured, and on top of your work. A happy, positive expression will serve you well in life.This is particularly true for challenging situations such as job interviews: a smiling, relaxed persona indicates confidence and an ability to cope well in stressful situations.
Stronger Immune Function- Smiling appears to help boost your body’s immune system. Laughter and positive thoughts release signaling molecules in your brain that fight stress and illnesses, while negative thoughts decrease your body’s immunity. Even if you’re feeling blue, crack a smile and reap the numerous health benefits of smiling.
Studies suggest that smiling, forced or not, can have a positive effect on your mood, decrease stress levels, and even make everyone around you feel better.
So, maybe laughter really is the best medicine!
The hemp oil is derived from the legal part of the cannabis plant (the stalk and seeds are the legal parts, the flowers and the leaves are not).
Hemp Oil contains natural, plant-based compounds called Phytocannabinoids that support the endocannabinoid system (ECS), the body’s primary regulatory system. Evidence shows that the ECS regulates various cellular, intestinal, immune response and stress response functions to support physiological homeostasis in the body. This ranges from simple functions, like eating, sleeping and relaxing, to complex functions, such as neuroplasticity, metabolism and inflammatory processes. A well-balanced ECS encourages favorable conditions in body systems, impacting the body’s ability to manage metabolic stress and support overall health and well-being. The ECS and a healthy diet may support key resolution pathways to inflammation, energy balance and metabolism through nutrient-rich omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and fibers from a whole food matrix in the form of phytonutrients.
Why Use Hemp Oil?
- Supports the endocannabinoid system
- Supports the body’s natural inflammatory response function
- provide antioxidant activity
- Consists of a combination of natural omega-3 fatty acids, including DHA, DPA and EPA
Why Consume Omega-3 Fatty Acids?
A large percentage of the U.S. adult population falls below the recommendations for omega-3 fatty acid consumption, including ALA, EPA and DHA, which are required for normal systemic body functions and must be obtained from dietary sources. Omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids are precursors of specialized lipid mediators (eicosanoids), which play an important role in the regulation of inflammation and the immune response. A balanced combination of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids favors healthy inflammation processes and supports the resolution phase of the inflammation processes by regulating various systemic functions in the body, including cardiovascular, pulmonary, immune and endocrine systems.
Papaya is not only delicious, but it’s also an incredibly healthy fruit.
The nutrients found in papaya, and particularly in papaya seeds, are thought to have a wide range of health benefits, including a reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer. They have also been known to aid in digestion, improve blood glucose control in people with diabetes, lower blood pressure, and reduce inflammation. So don’t throw those seeds away. Papaya seeds are edible and in small amounts can be very good for you.
Papayas are an excellent source of vitamin C, and one single medium fruit provides 224 percent of the recommended daily intake. Papayas are also a good source of: Folate, vitamin A, magnesium, copper, pantothenic acid, fiber. They also have B vitamins, alpha and beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, vitamin K, and lycopene, the powerful antioxidant most commonly associated with tomatoes.
Papaya Seeds Kill Worms and Other Parasitic Infections
The seeds of papaya fruit contain high levels of the proteolytic enzyme called papain, which breaks down undigested protein waste, therefore creating a hostile environment in the gastrointestinal tract for parasites to breed. The seeds also contain carpaine, a unique anthelmintic alkaloid that has been shown to be very effective at killing parasitic worms and amoebas. The seeds of papaya have a strong antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effect on your digestive system. Studies have shown that an extract made from papaya seeds is effective at killing E. coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus, and other dangerous bacteria.
Papaya Seeds Help Treat Liver Cirrhosis
Liver cirrhosis is a disease wherein the liver shrinks and becomes hardened. In this state, it is ineffective at removing toxins from the body, leading to a variety of serious health problems. Papaya seeds are often reported as an effective treatment for the overall detoxification of the liver. The recommended method is to grind up about ten dried seeds and mix them with a tablespoon of squeezed lemon or lime juice in a glass of water. Many cirrhosis sufferers have seen dramatic improvements with this natural remedy after 30 days.
Papaya Seeds Protect Your Kidneys
Oxidative stress is the most common factor in chronic kidney disease, particularly in patients with diabetes, and can lead to renal failure. Early research suggests that consuming fermented papaya daily for two months can reduce blood sugar levels in people affected by diabetes. The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of the seeds help detoxify the kidneys and protect them from inflammation.
Papaya Seeds Help Prevent Cancer
Papaya seeds contain agents such as phenolic and flavonoids, both powerful compounds that have high antioxidant activities to diminish tumor cell growth. Also, according to a study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Biomarkers, diets rich in beta-carotene, which is found in papayas, may reduce cancer risk and play a protective role against prostate cancer.
Papaya Seeds Fight Heart Disease
The high content of fiber, potassium, and vitamins in papaya all help to fight heart disease. In fact, a diet rich in potassium and low in sodium is the most effective change that a person can make to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease.
Papaya Seeds Reduce Inflammation
Papaya fruit and its seeds help fight inflammation in the body, such as arthritis, joint pains, gout, and asthma. Two very important enzymes in papaya seeds (papain and chymopapain) are the key to reducing the inflammation that is associated with these conditions.
Papaya Seeds Help Treat Viral Infection
There are reports of papaya seeds being used to successfully treat viral infections such as dengue fever in parts of Central America and Asia. In Costa Rica, in addition to the seeds, they also use the juice from boiling papaya leaves to effectively treat dengue fever. Obviously, this is a serious disease, so consult a doctor if you contract dengue to monitor your condition.
How to Consume and Store Papaya Seeds
When choosing papaya, look for fresh papayas with reddish-orange skin that are soft to the touch. The seeds are edible but have a bitter, peppery taste, so they can be mixed into a salad. Otherwise, they can be crushed and mixed with juice or honey and milk.
The easiest way to add papaya seeds to your diet is to simply buy a fresh papaya, cut it in half and scrape out the seeds with a tablespoon. Then find a container with a tight seal and put any seeds you’re not using immediately in there and keep them sealed in the fridge. Squeezing some lemon or lime juice over the seeds, closing the container and shaking it to coat them will help preserve them even longer. This works best if you use them regularly for a consistent supply. Even a small papaya fruit yields many seeds and should keep you going for at least a few days of treatment.
If you’re just starting out with papaya seeds or using them less regularly, it would be better to keep them in a sealed container in the freezer. As a general rule, if you will use your papaya seeds within three or four days, then keep them in the fridge. Any longer and it’s best to freeze them. They can be kept in the freezer for many months, though they should be defrosted before use, or soaked in hot water for a few minutes to warm and soften them.
How to Eat Papaya Seeds to Minimize Digestive Issues
When first eating papaya seeds, start off slowly. While they are safe to eat in small doses, they are quite powerful and too much at once can cause digestive upsets.
Here’s a good starting dosage guide for papaya seeds:
The first time you eat papaya seeds, try just two seeds with a protein-based meal.
If those are well-tolerated, then add another two seeds each time until you reach about a quarter of a teaspoon.
After at least three days of taking a quarter of a teaspoon without side effects, you can move up to half a teaspoon of papaya seeds.
After another three days, you can choose to move up to a full teaspoon of fresh seeds (though this may be too much for some sensitive people), or just stay on half a teaspoon, which is likely to provide similar health benefits.
If at any point you experience side effects from eating papaya seeds, then take a day off from them and start again at half the dose that gave you problems before.
Once you’ve reached a good tolerance of papaya seeds, it’s better to determine your dosage based on how much protein is in the meal you’re having.
Potential Risks and Side Effects
People with a latex allergy may also be allergic to papaya because papayas contain enzymes called chitinases. They can cause a cross-reaction between latex and the foods that contain them. As a precaution, pregnant women should not use papaya seeds or the enzyme-rich green papaya. This warning on their use would also extend to breastfeeding. Additionally, while papaya seeds do have strong anti-parasitic properties, they may be too powerful for young children’s gastrointestinal tracts, so a doctor should be consulted before giving them to infants. Patients using blood thinning medications like warfarin or aspirin should consult their doctor before they eat papaya seeds regularly, as papain may increase the effects of these drugs.
Onions have long been a popular ingredient in the kitchen. They can be used in a variety of ways and add flavor and depth to many different dishes. Besides boosting the flavor, onions also have nutritional value. In fact, onions are considered to be one of the best vegetables for your overall health.
Onions contain a number of compounds that are believed to help lower the incidence of heart disease. The allyl disulphide and allium found in onions release nitric oxide, which can decrease the stiffness of blood vessels. This can inhibit clot formation and reduce blood pressure, which decreases stroke, peripheral vascular disease, and coronary artery disease risks.
Onions also contain sulfur, which can help lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels, and are considered to help prevent clot formation. Although all forms of onions can be beneficial, eating them raw may have even greater value.
Onions are rich in flavonoids, which have been shown to help prevent gastric ulcers. Flavonoids fight off free radicals and prevent the growth of Helicobacter pylori, which is an ulcer-forming microorganism. Onion contains one of the flavonoids, quercetin that is responsible for a wide variety of health benefits. In fact, many types of cancer can be prevented by quercetin’s ability to prevent tumor formation and reduce the damage of DNA. The types of cancer that have been shown to decrease with the consumption of onions include gastric, breast, ovarian, colon, bladder, kidney, and lung. Because the outer layers of an onion contain the highest concentration of flavonoids, they should not be over peeled.
Decreased Risk of Osteoporosis
Studies have shown promising results in regard to onions and their beneficial role in bone health. The compounds in onion may increase mineral content and density by almost 20 percent, which helps decrease the incidence of osteoporosis. The sulfur found in onions help with protein synthesis, cell structure enhancement, and improves the strength of the connective tissues.
Improve Blood Pressure Levels
The sulfur in onions also contributes to lower blood pressure, which helps prevent a heart attack or stroke. Sulfur helps prevent platelets from collecting and clogging up, and it is a natural blood thinner. Although one should always discuss with their health care provider, eating onions on a regular basis may help people take fewer blood pressure medications.
Stronger Immune System
The aroma and sweetness of onions are due to the high levels of antioxidants, such as vitamin C and quercetin. Antioxidants aid in the delay of oxidative damage to body tissues and cells, and they help prevent cancer. The phytochemicals in onions also contribute to a healthy immune system.
Onions contain a high amount of biotin, which is also referred to as the vitamin for beauty. This essential nutrient helps maintain glowing, healthy skin and can also treat brittle nails and prevent the loss of hair. A number of skin conditions, such as eczema, conjunctivitis, leiner’s disease, and ichthyosis, have been shown to clear up when biotin levels increase in the body. Onions are one of the best sources of this nutrient.
Better Nutrient Absorption
Onions contain fructans (oligofructose and inulin), which have been shown to help improve the function of intestinal flora, which in turn helps improve the absorption of magnesium and calcium. Fructans can also prevent certain types of diarrhea.
Fight off Fungal and Antibacterial Infections
Onions have been used for years for their antibacterial and antifungal benefits. The allicin (an organic sulfur compound) in onions have been found to fight against a wide range of bacteria, including E. coli. It also helps fight fungal infections, such as Candida albicans, as well as viral and parasitic activity.
Prevention of Diabetes
Onions contain a prebiotic (inulin) that has been found to help control and prevent diabetes. Inulin also helps control glycemic levels, lower the risk of developing diabetes and increases the activity of antioxidants in the body. The biotin found in onions, in combination with chromium, may also help decrease insulin resistance and regulate blood sugar.
Decrease Stress Levels
Most people experience high levels of stress, and stress can lead to a myriad of health issues. Surprisingly, onions can play a role in stress relief. When you experience stress, cortisol is produced in your body, which can cause muscle damage and protein breakdown. The quercetin in onions actually suppresses the enzyme that is required for the release of cortisol, hence decreasing the harmful effects of stress.
The next time you cook with onion or order an onion-studded dish, you can feel great about yourself in that you are receiving a number of benefits that you maybe didn’t even know about.