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Improve and even save your life with these 5 herbs and supplements
by Christi Qazi / August 2007

In today’s society, everything is geared for instant gratification. We need more “stuff”, so we collect more debt and have to work harder to pay for these lifestyles. As a result, we have no time for preparing or eating home cooked meals, so we go for the easy fast food. This lifestyle has made obesity a huge problem in developed countries, and it increases the risk of developing diseases such as type 2 Diabetes, Cancers, and Heart Disease. Obesity is only one factor in the development of these diseases; other risk factors include genetics and environmental exposures.

There are things people can do to help protect themselves and to reduce their risks of getting life threatening illnesses’. People can control their weight, they can get yearly physicals, they can also reduce their exposure to chemicals that are known to cause cancer, and they can add to their diet herbs and other supplements that have been shown to help fight or eliminate these killer diseases.

There are hundreds of herbs and supplements that can help you, but I am going to list the top 5 that will help with the most common illnesses’. Before taking any of these herbs or supplements, please check with your Physician if you are taking any medications, are pregnant, or if you are having any surgery in the near future.

Omega-3 Fish oils

You should only purchase purity certified, enteric coated capsules to cut down on any fishy aftertaste, and to be sure that each capsule has the same purity and potency. Many studies have confirmed that Omega-3 oils help reduce your risk of heart disease and improved blood flow in your arteries. It is also known to help reduce inflammation reaction, as well as help those with Arthritis. Women who take this supplement in the first three months of pregnancy have a lower chance of having a low birth weight baby, and babies who’s diet is supplemented with Omega-3 had stronger immune systems.

Garlic

Often called the “poor man’s penicillin”, this commonly used plant has many health benefits. Garlic has natural anti-microbial properties that are as effective against many bacteria as antibiotics. Garlic has also been shown to inhibit coronary artery calcification, a process that serves as a marker for plaque formation since the body lays down calcium in areas that have been damaged. This means that garlic can help prevent and potentially reverse atherosclerotic plaque formation. Garlic also significantly lowers blood pressure and induces relaxation. High in Vitamin C, B6, selenium and manganese, it also provides protection against cancer and heavy metal toxicity.

Calendula

This member of the Daisy family is well known for it’s ability to treat a variety of skin problems. Researchers have found that this herb is an antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antifungal. It has also been documented to help stimulate white blood cell production, which helps the immune system and speeds the healing process.

Milk Thistle

Another member of the Daisy family, Milk Thistle is an excellent liver detoxifier, and it also helps improve liver function. The active ingredient in the Milk Thistle is called silymarin, and is typically administered in amounts ranging from 200-500mg per day. It is also known for lowering cholesterol levels. Research suggests that Milk Thistle can also reduce insulin resistance in people with type 2 diabetes who also have cirrhosis, as well as reducing the growth of cancer cells in breast, cervical, and prostate cancers.

Calcium

Calcium is a mineral that is essential for the normal growth and maintenance of bones and teeth. Calcium requirements must be met throughout life. Long-term calcium deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, in which the bone deteriorates and there is an increased risk of fractures. Calcium has also been found to assist in the production of lymphatic fluids. Vitamin D is needed to absorb Calcium, and while you can get supplements of Vitamin D, our bodies make it naturally when we are exposed to sunlight. While it is important to make sure you are not unprotected in the sun, small amounts of sun exposure are healthy and needed in order to make Vitamin D and to absorb the Calcium in our diets. If taken with Magnesium, Calcium aids in becoming a natural muscle relaxer.

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