Natural Cures For Dummies
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Today’s food supply is often deficient in nutrients, and environmental factors frequently disrupt the body’s natural balance, so sometimes you need natural cures to supplement your diet to correct nutritional deficiencies, boost the immune system, or give your body something extra that has been proven to help it recover from a specific illness. Following are the ten most essential supplements to keep in your medicine cabinet. These must-haves prevent and reverse a host of common illnesses, naturally:

  • Colostrum: Colostrum is a pre-milk substance that female mammals produce in their mammary glands late in pregnancy to feed their newborns. It’s loaded with nutrients and antibodies that support growth and fight infection. Bovine colostrum is 40 times richer in immune factors than human colostrum, and it works as well for humans as it does for calves. Colostrum accelerates healing of all body tissues and increases bone and lean muscle mass. Colostrum is a potent weapon in fighting all sorts of bacterial, viral, and fungal infections.

    Take 10,000 mg of colostrum one or two times daily at the first sign of infection and continue until your symptoms subside.

  • Proline-rich polypeptides (PRPs): PRPs, derived from colostrum, are tiny information-carrying proteins with amazing adaptability. They stimulate an underactive immune system and dampen an overactive immune system, so they’re useful for both fighting infection and treating inflammation caused by autoimmune disorders, including allergies, asthma, arthritis, and multiple sclerosis.

    Buy PRPs as a sublingual spray. The dosage is 4 sprays in mouth, hold for 30 seconds and swallow, twice daily early morning and before bed, for a total of 16 mg daily.

  • CoQ10: Coenzyme Q10 (Co Q10) is a biologically active, natural vitamin-like substance that the body produces and uses in the production of cellular energy. Several factors contribute to CoQ10 deficiency, including aging, illness, and certain diabetes and cardiovascular medications, including statins, beta blockers, and diuretics. CoQ10 deficiency has been linked to cardiovascular illnesses, including angina, arrhythmia, heart failure, and high blood pressure. It may also play a role in blood glucose regulation and the healthy functioning of the neurological and immune systems. As time goes on, this becomes one of the most important nutrients to add to your daily regimen.

    Take your weight in milligrams of the highest quality CoQ10 available (check out Kaneka Q10) If you weigh 200 pounds, for example, take 200 mg.

  • S-acetyl glutathione: Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that protects tissues and organs throughout the body, detoxifies the body, and helps to maintain levels of other antioxidants, including vitamins C and E. Unfortunately, boosting glutathione levels is difficult, because most forms of glutathione don’t become bioavailable when taken orally. S-acetyl glutathione is a unique preparation that overcomes the obstacles of oral delivery.

    To optimize health, take 200 mg of S-acetyl glutathione twice daily. If you can’t find S-acetyl glutathione, then take 600 mg of N-acetyl cysteine twice daily. N-acetyl cysteine is a glutathione precursor; your body uses it to make glutathione.

    Depletion of glutathione may result in insufficient detoxification, increased oxidation, and irreversible tissue damage. Many disease states occur when glutathione levels are low.

  • Alpha-lipoic acid: Alpha lipoic acid is a synthetic form of lipoic acid, small amounts of which the body manufactures in the liver and uses in the production of cellular energy and to neutralize damage caused by free radicals. Alpha-lipoic acid increases levels of glutathione, regenerates vitamins C and E, helps to maintain healthy levels of Co Q10, prevents DNA damage, and assists in heavy metal detoxification. It is often used to treat people with diabetes and metabolic syndrome, because it improves insulin sensitivity and may help reverse nerve damage that causes diabetic neuropathy. Take 200 mg of alpha-lipoic acid two to three times daily, preferably 15 minutes before eating.

  • Omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFAs): EFAs are essential for human growth, development, and function, but because they’re something the body can’t make, you have to get them from what you eat. Omega-3 EFAs reduce inflammation and may decrease the risk of cardiovascular illnesses (including atherosclerosis and high blood pressure), arthritis, cancer, and brain and cognitive disorders. On a cellular level, omega-3 EFAs support the efficient use of glucose and insulin and improve the structure and function of cell membranes.

    Consume at least 4 grams of omega-3 EFAs daily, mostly through diet, if possible. Foods high in omega-3 include fatty fishes (salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, herring, halibut, and anchovies), flaxseed and flaxseed oil, cod liver oil, walnuts, olive oil, brussels sprouts, kale, and spinach.

    If you can’t get 4 grams through diet alone, make up the difference with an omega-3 supplement from a reputable manufacturer. (Make sure the supplements are free of environmental toxins, including dioxins, PCBs, pesticides, and heavy metals, including mercury.)

  • Vitamin D3: Vitamin D enables the body to absorb calcium; maintains calcium and phosphate concentrations in the blood to support bone mineralization; plays a key role in neuromuscular and immune function, and helps to reduce inflammation. You get most of your vitamin D from vitamin-D-fortified foods, such as milk and cereal, and from your own body’s production of vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight. If you’re not consuming enough vitamin-D-fortified food or getting enough sunlight, you may have a vitamin D deficiency and not even realize it. In addition, a low-cholesterol diet and certain cholesterol-lowering medications inhibit vitamin D production.

    Supplementing your diet with 2,000 to 10,000 mg of vitamin D3 (the more bioavailable form of vitamin D) is generally safe. However, have your vitamin D serum level tested and strive to maintain a level of 50 to 80 ng/ml.

  • Resveratrol: Resveratrol is an anti-oxidant with anti-inflammatory properties. It’s found in grapes, purple grape juice, red wine, plumbs, some berries, and peanuts. Resveratrol activates certain genes associated with longevity and protects the body from numerous illnesses, including heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes. For general health, take 200 mg trans resveratrol daily, which may be taken in divided doses.

  • Whole beta glucan: Whole beta glucan, sometimes referred to as whole glucan particle (WGP), is derived from baker’s yeast, and it triggers a process in the immune system that optimizes the ability of killer cells to seek out tumors, bacteria, and viruses; bind to them; and release chemicals to destroy them.

    Take 500 mg whole beta glucan one or two times daily at the first sign of infection and continue until symptoms subside; then reduce the dosage to 250 mg daily for prevention during cold and flu season. Discontinue use after the cold and flu season passes. Whole beta glucan is also useful in the treatment of cancer and in restoring the production of blood cells and platelets following radiation or an insult to the bone marrow.

  • Vitamin B12 and folate: Vitamin B12 as methylcobalamin and folate as 5-MTHF (5-methyltetrahydrofolic acid) support methylation — a key biochemical process that helps repair DNA, influences DNA expression, regulates homocysteine (a compound that can damage blood vessels), helps recycle molecules used to detoxify the body, reduces inflammation, produces neurotransmitters that regulate mood, and much more. To optimize methylation, take 5,000 mcg of methylcobalamin (often referred to as methyl-B12) in a fast-dissolving tablet sublingually and 800 mcg of 5-MTHF one or two times daily.

    Take vitamin B12 as methylcobalamin and folate as 5-MTHF. These forms are more bioavailable than other forms of B12 and folate.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Dr. Scott J. Banks has been in clinical practice for more than 30 years. In 2013, Banks joined an elite group Institute for Functional Medicine Certified Practitioners. He is uniquely trained in the Functional Medicine model to identify and treat the root causes of illness, disease, and chronic disorders.

Joe Kraynak has authored and co-authored numerous books.

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