Tag: herbs

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. 

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Natural Medicine Research Nuggets

woman doing natural medicine research

A brief round-up of some natural medicine news

  1. Use of SSRI medications (anti-depressants) increases the risk of osteoporosis.
  2. At least twice per day intake of grapes, oranges, apples, and fresh tomatoes were protective for wheezing and rhinitis (allergies).
  3. Folic acid supplementation effectively reduces the risk of stroke.
  4. A double-blind placebo-controlled study found that supplementation with a Korean red (Panax) ginseng (2 g/meal) improved plasma glucose and plasma insulin regulation in people with well-controlled type 2 diabetes.

Here’s What I Believe

what a naturopath believes

Why Do I Believe in Naturopathic Medicine?

I believe, because I’ve seen success with it time and time again.  People who were told they had a 1% chance of success conceiving and having healthy pregnancies, people who were told that they would never conceive on their own and their only hope was donor eggs, conceiving and having healthy pregnancies naturally, people who had had repeated failed IVF attempts, forgoing all the drugs, turning to vitamins, minerals, diet and herbs and having healthy pregnancies.  I’ve seen acne improved, hair loss stopped, skin cleared, digestion working normally, hot flashes relieved, weight loss, energy and vitality returned to normal, breathing cleared, babies made, cramps gone, thyroid and immune function restored and on and on.

When you’ve witnessed it for 16+ years with your own eyes, you can’t help but believe in the power of the human body to heal and the power of nature to help it along.   We can help you too, call us at 416-481-0222 or book online now.

By Dr. Pamela Frank, BSc(Hons), ND

What Not to Take

colon cleanse

Colon Cleanses

by Dr. Pamela Frank, BSc(Hons), ND

I came across a colon cleanse product today that typifies why I don’t really recommend these particular things. They are mostly just laxative herbs and fiber supplements. The product I saw today contained 18 different things in 2 – 250 mg capsules, if the amount of everything was equal, about 28 mg of each – not really enough of any one thing to do anything.

Besides which, I don’t recommend laxative herbs. Why not? Because you can get the same effect by taking ExLax, and no one considers taking ExLax healthy. Laxatives irritate the digestive tract (this is how some of them work) and they can become habit forming. Most of my patients don’t need fiber supplements anyway because they are eating 8-10 servings of fruit and vegetables per day providing plenty of healthy soluble fibre, plus the nutritional punch of vitamins and minerals found in fruit and vegetables.

These products also often make exaggerated claims (untruths) about cleaning out the caked-on residue in your colon. Having seen lots of pictures of colonoscopies (and let’s face it, the people having a colonoscopy are probably not the healthiest specimens), I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no caked-on residue in anyone’s colon. There’s only pink tissue. What I do recommend people do once or twice per year, is clean out harmful bacteria, yeast and/or parasites from the colon and replenish the beneficial bacteria.

Talk to one of our naturopathic doctors about what really constitutes a healthy digestive tract cleanse.

A Rant on Cleanses

It’s a pet peeve of mine that there are so many poor quality products at most health food stores.  Poor quality products mean that health conscious people who are trying to take a more proactive approach to maintaining their health get separated from their money for little or no benefit and people who may be just venturing into natural medicine may conclude that it doesn’t work on the basis of a negative experience with these sham products.  High on my list of fairly worthless products are “cleanse” kits. Most of them contain some combination of laxative herbs, fiber supplements, liver herbs like dandelion and milk thistle and maybe probiotics.  That all sounds good right?  However, I never recommend laxative herbs, they can be irritating to the digestive tract and over long term use have been shown to cause cellular changes that may not be healthy.  Fiber supplements should not be necessary for anyone who is eating adequate fruit and vegetables in their diet.  Dandelion and milk thistle are great herbs, however the dosages in most of these products are too low to accomplish anything and tincture is generally the best format for herbs.  Good quality probiotics are not shelf stable, they must be kept refrigerated, if the probiotic you are using is not kept in the fridge, switch to one that is.

These products also tend to have “proprietary” blends of many herbs.  What this means is that they don’t disclose how much of any particular herb is in it, which makes determining the effectiveness of the dose you would receive impossible.  One particular one contains a mixture of 15 different herbs that total up to 750 mg per day, assuming that all 15 herbs were present in equal amounts it means the daily dose of each herb would be 50 mg, which is nothing.  By comparison, the MediHerb product that would be comparable contains 7 000 mg of milk thistle and 400 mg of dandelion, per tablet.

At best these products will make you poop more for a month, you can accomplish the same thing by taking Ex Lax, not that I would recommend that either. That is not helping to rid the digestive tract of unwanted organisms and restoring healthy bowel flora which is what I mean when I refer to a cleanse of the digestive tract.

Spring, fall and January are the usual gastrointestinal cleanse times, which we usually follow with a liver detox.  It’s always best to schedule an appointment so we can discuss what would actually work to restore bowel health and detoxify the liver.  Information changes all the time!