In part one, titled How To Have Great Digestion, you learned that good digestion is one of the keys to great health. Choosing your foods wisely, chewing your food completely and using digestive enzymes are just some of the ways to ensure the best digestion possible. Here are some more ideas to help enhance your digestion and therefore your health.
4. Use Probiotics
The word probiotic literally means “for life.” Essentially what you are doing when you take probiotics is giving new life to your digestive system by helping to repopulate it with “good” bacteria. Some of the most common strains of bacteria found in probiotics are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria. Common foods that have these type of bacteria are yogurt, kefir, fermented soy products such as miso soup or tofu (make sure it is fermented), and sauerkraut. These particular types of bacteria have been shown to help improve conditions such as yeast infections, diarrhea and some say they can prolong life as well. The Japanese and Russian people of the Caucus mountains have some of the longest life spans in the world, and culturally their diets are composed of many fermented foods containing healthy probiotics.
5. Address “Leaky Gut Syndrome”
Leaky gut syndrome is a condition in which the cells of the intestinal lining develop gaps between them. This may be cause for concern because these gaps could allow toxins and bacteria to “leak” into the bloodstream. Some of the symptoms of leaky gut include: excessive gas and bloating, IBS, food allergies, or even adverse changes in mood. Over-consumption of the following foods or drugs may cause leaky gut: alcohol, caffeine, NSAIDS (such as Aspirin), pollutants on fruits (such as insecticides), and extremely spicy foods.
A few ways to help prevent this condition are: eat complex carbohydrates such as fruits and vegetables (which increase fiber content in the diet); reduce inflammation by taking fish oils, especially cod liver oil (which contains vitamins A and D, excellent antioxidants). Supplementing with L Glutamine, an amino acid found in both meat and plants has been shown to protect the integrity of the gastrointestinal lining.
6. Do a Cleanse/Detox
Some of the components that make up doing a cleanse are getting rid of foods that you already know are bad for you: fast food, fried foods, basically most things found in the drive through of your favorite restaurant. You want to replace those things with living foods rich with enzymes and probiotics: fruits, vegetables, yogurts (minus the high fructose corn syrup or artificial colors), nuts, seeds, berries and even some herbs such as milk thistle, alfalfa, slippery elm, and dandelion. Several companies offer cleanses that contain herbs that help the liver remove chemicals like phthalates, organophosphates, solvents, heavy metals from the body that we get from the air as well as our food.
So let’s recap the steps to obtaining a happier life through better digestion:
1. Choose your foods wisely.
2. Chew your food completely.
3. Use digestive enzymes.
4. Use probiotics.
5. Address leaky gut syndrome.
6. Do a cleanse/detox.
Alternative cancer treatments won’t play any role in curing your cancer, but they may help you cope with signs and symptoms caused by cancer and cancer treatments. Common signs and symptoms such as anxiety, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, difficulty sleeping, and stress may be lessened by alternative treatments.
You can use alternative cancer treatments as a supplement to treatments you receive from your doctor, not as a substitute for medical care. While alternative cancer treatments, such as acupuncture, may reduce nausea or pain, they generally aren’t powerful enough to replace medications from your doctor. Work closely with your doctor to determine the right balance between traditional medicines and alternative cancer treatments.
During acupuncture treatment, a practitioner inserts tiny needles into your skin at precise points. Studies show acupuncture may be helpful in relieving nausea caused by chemotherapy. Acupuncture may also help relieve pain.
Acupuncture is safe if it’s performed by a licensed practitioner using sterile needles. Acupuncture may not be safe if you’re taking blood thinners or if you have low blood counts, so check with your doctor first.
Tai chi is a form of exercise that incorporates gentle movements and deep-breathing. Tai chi can be led by an instructor, or you can learn on your own following books or videos. Practicing tai chi may help relieve stress. It may also be helpful if you’re having difficulty sleeping at night.
Tai chi is generally safe. The slow movements don’t require great physical strength, and the exercises can be easily adapted to your own abilities. Still, talk to your doctor before beginning. Don’t do any tai chi moves that cause pain.
During a massage, your practitioner kneads your skin, muscles and tendons in an effort to relieve muscle tension and stress and promote relaxation. Several massage methods exist.
Massage can be light and gentle, or it can be deep with more pressure. Studies have found massage can be helpful in relieving pain in people with cancer. It may also help relieve anxiety, fatigue and stress.
Massage can be safe if you work with an understanding massage therapist. Many cancer centers have massage therapists on staff, or your doctor can refer you to a massage therapist who regularly works with people who have cancer.
Don’t have a massage if your blood counts are low. Ask the massage therapist to avoid massaging near surgical scars, radiation treatment areas or tumors. If you have cancer in your bones or other bone diseases, such as osteoporosis, ask the massage therapist to use light pressure, rather than deep massage.
You may find some alternative treatments work well together. For instance, deep breathing during a massage may provide further stress relief.
Hearing a diagnosis of cancer may be one of the most frightening things that can happen in a doctor’s office. The disease can be deadly, and even when it’s not, the diagnosis very often means surgery and a long period of debilitating chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
Many patients can benefit from complimentary medicine during or after cancer treatment. As one member of a team, the complimentary care provider has a variety of tools to help patients through the process. Complimentary medicine, drawing on herbs, vitamins, acupuncture and other tools as adjuncts to traditional treatments, can address a wide range of medical conditions and health concerns.
To better understand how complimentary medicine works in cancer care, consider a 44-year-old woman with two children who had a double mastectomy for breast cancer. Her vitamin D levels were checked and she was put on a supplement. She was also advised to use evening primrose oil to relieve the hot flashes she was getting from her treatment with tamoxifen, a drug that interferes with estrogen. Acupuncture was used to help relieve her pain and fatigue. The idea is that her treatment was tailored to her individual needs
Patients dealing with cancer who wish to add alternative medicine to their treatment regimen really should seek out a qualified provider. It is a vulnerable time for people, and anything that seems to promise a cure is tempting. Many patients read about various alternative approaches on the Internet and wind up wasting hundreds or thousands of dollars and many hours of time on things that won’t be effective for their type of cancer. Often they don’t tell their doctors they’re doing this, leaving the patient without support and the doctor without important information.
Other patients err in the other direction, dismissing the whole idea of complimentary medicine. They endure the pain and nausea that frequently accompanies cancer treatment when there are methods they could use to reduce those effects.
A trained professional can identify the supplements, dietary choices and techniques, such as massage or yoga, that are most likely to help an individual patient, and which compliment the treatment the patient is undergoing. Each case is unique, and it is important for the provider and the patient to become a team, working together to find the best options.
Choosing a provider of complimentary medicine is not always easy. The American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine is a good resource, offering an array of general information and a directory of certified physicians around the country. It’s a good place to start your search.
Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES 2004), using measured heights and weights, indicate that an estimated 66% of U.S. adults are overweight.
For people who are struggling with weight loss, hypnosis can provide extra motivation to keep moving in the direction of weight goals, and to break away from the many food traps that get in the way of weight loss.
Hypnosis can be a powerful tool for re-educating the unconscious mind – the part that creates cravings and impulses – but can also be harnessed to keep people making the right choices about what they eat, and the amount of healthy exercise they need to do on a regular basis. Permanent weight loss occurs with a change in lifestyle, not through unnatural diets that are impossible to maintain.
Hypnosis can help everyone who wants to make the above changes quickly, and more easily than they ever imagined possible. According to Karen Olness, M.D., Professor at Case Western School of Medicine, “hypnosis works by harnessing your imagination.”
In one clinical study, researchers put 109 overweight individuals on a medically supervised weight-loss program. Some of the folks used hypnosis and others did not.
After about nine weeks, both these focus groups had lost the same amount of weight. But, here’s the part that should be of most interest to people wanting to lose weight and keep it off. At eight month and two-year intervals, the participants who received hypnosis had lost additional weight or maintained their weight better than those who didn’t.
Everyone who has ever wanted to lose weight has started to diet once or probably multiple times over the years. However, most dieters have discovered they don’t get lasting success. There are many reasons for this, but it is mostly attributable to loss of motivation, instead of loss of weight.
Hypnosis helps to get you motivated and, more importantly, helps to keep you motivated to eat healthier foods, control your portions and to increase your exercise routine. Even the best diet plans will not work if they are not followed through. Research shows that most diets fail because dieters simply cannot stick to them.
Hypnotherapy weight loss programs work by tapping into the power of the unconscious mind to motivate you to exercise and treat your body right. For many people, another key to weight loss is stress management. Self-hypnosis is an alternative strategy for managing our stress and to break the habit of using food to soothe emotions.
If you undergo cancer therapy, we suggest you talk to your physician about possible side effects. If you are looking for non-pharmacological therapies, a combination of acupuncture and herbs may be of interest to you.
• Patches inside your mouth or on your lips that are white, red, or a mixture of red and white.
• A sore, or lesion, in the mouth that does not heal within two weeks.
• A lump or thickening in the cheek.
• A sore throat or a feeling that something is caught in the throat.
• Difficulty chewing, swallowing, moving the jaw or tongue.
• Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth.
• Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable.
• Loose teeth.
Doctors utilize imaging procedures such as x-ray, computerized tomography, magnetic resonance imaging scan, and ultrasound, to detect oral or throat cancer, and its stage and spread.