Tag: cholesterol

Health Benefits of Ginger

ginger tea

Ginger and Me

Every year about this time, I think I should get ambitious and make a gingerbread house from scratch – it still hasn’t happened.  I thought a little information about the health benefits of ginger might motivate you and me to include more in our diets through other means like stir-fries and curry.
Here’s the scoop, ginger helps:

  • Soothe ulcers
  • Morning sickness and motion sickness
  • Lower cholesterol and platelet clumping
  • Reduce inflammation

Time to go make a nice cup of ginger tea. Go overboard with ginger!

Bye Bye Blood Pressure Medications

Man with high blood pressure or hypertension

Healing Hypertension at the Source

High blood pressure is typically a symptom free condition that is only picked up on physical examination and is a common (but not normal) problem with age. There are many possible causes of high blood pressure:

  • Blockage or hardening of the arteries
  • Magnesium or potassium imbalances
  • Poor adrenal gland function
  • High cholesterol
  • Poor kidney function
  • Over stimulation of the nervous system/stress

High blood pressure won’t go away without some intervention. Often borderline high blood pressure people are sent home until their next check up and without making some changes, the only place to go is up. If you neglect your blood pressure, you can expect a lifetime of multiple prescription drugs, and heart disease such as strokes or heart attacks.

To correct high blood pressure we:

  • Clean out the arteries with proteolytic enzymes and herbs
  • Correct magnesium and potassium imbalances
  • Nourish, balance and support the adrenal glands
  • Reduce cholesterol through dietary changes and exercise
  • Heal and support the kidneys
  • Reduce stress and nervous system stimulation through exercise, yoga, tai chi, breathing exercises, psychotherapy, massage therapy, herbs and other nutrients

By Dr. Pamela Frank, BSc (Hons), ND.  Our licensed naturopaths can help treat your high blood pressure to reduce or avoid medications.  Call us at 416-481-0222 or book online now. 

The Health Benefits of Ginger(bread)

Every year I think I should get ambitious and make a gingerbread house from scratch – it still hasn’t happened. I thought a little information about the health benefits of ginger might motivate you and me to include more in our diets through other means like stir-fries and curry.

Here’s the scoop, ginger helps:

  • Prevent and soothe ulcers
  • Morning sickness and for motion sickness
  • Lower cholesterol and platelet clumping
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Prevent cancer


Carcinogenesis. 2014 Jun;35(6):1320-9. doi: 10.1093/carcin/bgu011. Epub 2014 Jan 15.
Enterohepatic recirculation of bioactive ginger phytochemicals is associated with enhanced tumor growth-inhibitory activity of ginger extract.
Gundala SR1, Mukkavilli R2, Yang C1, Yadav P3, Tandon V3, Vangala S2, Prakash S4, Aneja R5.

Food Funct. 2013 Jun;4(6):845-55. doi: 10.1039/c3fo30337c. Epub 2013 Apr 24.
A review of the gastroprotective effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe).
Haniadka R1, Saldanha E, Sunita V, Palatty PL, Fayad R, Baliga MS.

Fiber Research


  1. Dietary soluble fiber inhibits cholesterol stone formation by reducing the biliary cholesterol saturation index. Source: Am J Surg. 1999 Apr;177(4):307-10.
  2. This study found an inverse relationship between stomach cancer risk and various types of fiber, derived, in particular, from vegetables and fruit. Source: Cancer Causes Control. 2009 Aug;20(6):847-53Apr;97(4):661-6
  3. This study compared soluble fiber, insoluble fiber and placebo in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome and found that only the soluble fiber group had any significant improvement.  Source: BMJ. 2009 Aug 27;339:b3154

Natural Medicine Headlines This Week

I spend hours each day reading articles and new research.  Here’s a quick list of some of the natural medicine research headlines:

  1. Salvia officinalis Reduces Total Cholesterol and Triglycerides
  2. Vitamin D Deficiency Associated with PCOS
  3. Vitamin D Therapy for Glucose Metabolism and Menstrual Frequency in PCOS
  4. Laughter Therapy for Depression, Quality of Life and Sleep in Community Dwelling Elders
  5. Mind/Body Intervention Increases Pregnancy Rates in IVF
  6. Resveratrol Improves Insulin Sensitivity in Type 2 Diabetics
  7. Lactobacillus reuteri Lowers the Incidence of Antibiotic-Associated Diarrhea
  8. L-theanine Improves Attention and Reaction Time in High AnxietyIndividuals
  9. Green Tea Extract and L-theanine Improves Memory and Attention in Mild Cognitive Impairment
  10. Astaxanthin Improves Oxidative Stress Markers in Obese Subjects
  11. Standardized Cranberry Powder Reduces Symptoms and the Reoccurrence of UTIs in Women
  12. Prenatal DHA May Help Neurological Outcomes in Children
  13. L-arginine Supplementation for Women at High Risk for Pre-eclampsia
  14. DHEA Increases Baseline Follicular Phase Progesterone Levels
  15. DHA Supplementation During Pregnancy Lowers Postpartum Depression
  16. Cobra, Cat and Fish Yoga Poses for Dysmennorrhea

Fiber Fact & Fiction


A high fiber diet has been proven to have a number of health benefits:

  1. Lower risk of cancer
  2. Lower risk of diabetes
  3. Lower risk of heart disease
  4. Lowers blood cholesterol
  5. Keeps bowels regular
  6. Helps nourish cells that line the digestive tract and maintain a healthy bowel environment


“I have to eat grains in order to have a high fiber diet”


No you don’t!  In fact the very things you may want to be eating a high fiber diet for may be caused by the grains you are eating to obtain the fiber – ironic isn’t it?  Grains contribute to cancer, heart disease, high cholesterol and bowel problems like irritable bowel syndrome.  Grains contain proteins like gluten and gliadin that can damage the digestive tract.  They also contain anti-nutrients called phytates that bind to minerals so that you can’t absorb them.  Chronically have low iron?  Try cutting grains out of your diet and see what happens.  Want to read more anti-grain sentiment?  Check it out here.


Soluble Fiber vs. Insoluble Fiber


Soluble fiber is the type found in nuts and seeds, fruits and vegetables and some grains like oat bran.  Wheat bran on the other hand is insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber does not break down in the gut and has a harsh abrasive irritating effect on the gut, that’s how it works to keep bowels moving, it irritates the crap out of it, literally.  Soluble fiber works by absorbing water in the gut causing the gut to expand and sense that there is food there to move through.  Soluble fiber is the one that binds to excess cholesterol to remove it, lowers risk of gallstones, slows increases in blood sugar and nourishes the lining of the digestive tract.

Replace Starch with Nuts in Diabetes

Two ounces of nuts daily as a replacement for carbohydrate foods improved both glycemic control (HbA1C) and serum lipids (bad cholesterol) in type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, neither in the current study nor in previous reports has nut consumption been associated with weight gain. If anything, nuts appear to be well suited as part of weight-reducing diets.

Source: Diabetes Care, Online June 29, 2011

Life Insurance or 12 Steps to Avoid Dying Before Your Time

According to a 2009 study, the odds of dying prematurely can be considerably reduced by:

  • Giving up Smoking- by behavior modification, psychotherapy, acupuncture, naturopathic treatment
  • Controlling High Blood Pressure by exercise and diet (medication as a last resort)
  • Getting off of the couch and walking and/or exercising daily- at least 30 minutes per day of some form of cardiovascular exercise
  • Reducing Salt in our food – avoid packaged and processed foods altogether, add only minimal iodized sea salt (you do need some salt in order to get iodine for the thyroid)
  • Increasing Omega-3 Fats in our diet or taking an Omega-3 supplement – fish oil trumps flaxseed oil or other plant oils
  • Controlling Blood Glucose via diet, exercise and stress reduction (medication as a last resort)
  • Lowering LDL Cholesterol via diet and exercise (medication as a last resort)- lowering blood sugar and insulin lowers cholesterol levels nicely
  • Limiting Alcohol consumption
  • Increasing Fruit and Vegetable consumption
  • Using more vegetable oils in cooking and reducing intake of animal source and saturated fats
  • Taking a good multivitamin
  • Having an annual physical exam

Source: Plos Med 6(4): 1000058