Advantages of Turning to Health Medicines and Products

Herbal products and medicines are fast becoming an important choice for people globally. The popularity of these products is fueled by their healthier ways of healing and preservation of body’s natural resources. Easily grown in your own backyard or found in the wild, herbs are now making their way into laboratories and via the products sold in your local pharmacy.

What are herbal products and medicines and how can you benefit from them?

Oft serving as an alternative for medicines manufactured commercially, herbal medicines and supplements are produced from100 percent content of natural resources and plant extracts. Their medicinal values are akin to those contributed by modern drugs, minus their heavy cost and side effects. For instance herbs like bayabas, sambong, ampalaya, banaba and many others are being used widely in Philippines to treat various illnesses and health conditions.

The other countries are not far behind-with health experts and governmental authorities recommending and approving most of these health care products and medicines manufactured from natural ingredients. Read on for the many benefits that affirm the effectiveness of herbal medicines– in more ways than one.

Natural Qualities Galore

In the contemporary scenario, when quite a few commercially available products are having an adverse effect on the health of their consumers and inflicting unwarranted side effects; these natural products are proving to be the safest best for health experts and patients alike. For instance, Bio-strath Elixir, a herb based formula, reduces health risk to a great extent and is favored by people looking for that little bit extra for a healthier life. Bio-strath Elixir is yeast based and effective in providing extra support for better bodily constitution and metabolic activities alike.

Easily Available

Plants and herbs required for manufacturing these health products are easily available in various parts of the world. In addition, the raw materials required for these preparations and concoctions are relatively inexpensive and do not require rigorous procedures for their growth.

Very Effective

The herbs and plant extracts used in medicines are well researched upon, recognized and approved by the medical community. They have been proved to be effective in treating a multitude of illnesses. For instance Ampalaya is known to contain medicinal properties required for lowering a patient’s level of blood sugar and keeping the other symptoms of Diabetes under control-to quite a large extent.

Cost Effective and Practical

Apart from those mentioned above, there are other reasons for patronizing these easy-to make therapies; they are practical and cost -effective as well. Considerably cheaper than commercially manufactured drugs, they often produce similar or more effective results!

Sp, if you are looking towards other solutions for reducing the signs of your health concerns or desirous of affordable and proven measures to treat the same, then do seek an appointment with an expert in natural health medicines -you will not be disappointed.

Effective Alcohol And Drug Addiction Treatment

Through scientific research, much more is now known about how exactly drugs work in the brain, and we also know that drug addiction treatments can be successful in offering help for addiction. With a better understanding of addiction and drug abuse, it is hoped that better addiction treatment programs can be designed. Drug addiction has been identified as a brain disease because the abuse of drugs leads to changes in the structure and function of the brain. Although it is true that for most people the initial decision to take drugs is voluntary, over time the changes in the brain caused by repeated drug abuse can affect a person’s self control and ability to make sound decisions,and at the same time, send intense impulses to take drugs.

The financial costs of addiction to drugs are astounding. The total overall costs of substance abuse in the United States is estimated to exceed half a trillion dollars annually. This includes health- and crime-related costs as well as losses in productivity This includes approximately $181 billion for illegal drugs,$168 billion for tobacco, and $185 billion for alcohol.

The misery shared by millions of addicts, their families, and friends are difficult to quantify.

The changes that occur in the brain with drug abuse, make it very difficult for the addict to stop abusing drugs. Fortunately, there are effective addiction treatments that the unsettling addictive effects to lead normal productive lives. Research shows that combining addiction treatment medications, if available, with behavioral therapy is the best way to ensure success for most patients. Addiction treatment approaches that are tailored to each patient’s drug abuse patterns and any co-occurring medical, psychiatric, and social problems can lead to sustained recovery and a life without drug abuse.

To be effective, addiction treatment must address the individual’s drug abuse and any associated medical, psychological, social, vocational, and legal problems. It is also important that treatment be appropriate to the individual’s age, gender, ethnicity, and culture.

There are some unconventional treatments that have been tried with some degree of success.

Acupuncture has found its way into being an effective component in drug addiction treatment. Acupuncture has been found to be effective in reducing some of the withdrawal symptoms and several addiction centers have introduced it as an integral part of court-mandated drug addiction treatment programs. Although interest continues to grow cultural, political and technical reasons, in addition to lack of research may be hindering more widespread adoption of acupuncture as an effective treatment for addiction. Acupuncture based addiction treatment are a health-care bargain, being cost effective because it can be done on an inexpensive outpatient basis with relatively limited expenses at the institutional levels.

Biofeedback Brainwave Biofeedback has shown dramatic successes in several studies to prevent relapses from drug and alcohol addiction. Biofeedback is a medical therapy in which patients can treat themselves by learning to control their own brain waves. Electroencephalogram or eeg biofeedback treatments are now being practiced at prestigious mainstream medicinal clinics such as the Mayo Clinic and are also being paid for by insurance companies. The premise is that many conditions can be helped by altering brainwave patterns. Essentially, biofeedback is a way to train the body to alter biological functions using correcting signals or by retraining the brain to produce healthy brainwave patterns on its own. EEG Biofeedback has shown some encouraging results in treating not only drug and alcohol addiction, but also people with eating disorders, even smokers and other compulsive behaviors. It has been observed as an efficient way to integrate, body, mind, emotions and spirit and more research continues.

Supplements and Drugs: A Hazardous Combination

As I have become more involved in using functional nutritional therapy in my practice, I have come to realize that many people are still confused about the safety and effectiveness of various dietary supplements. Because these products are “natural”, many feel they are always safe to use. Although supplements and herbs can be safer than pharmaceutical drugs, they can still function as drugs in the body and should be used with caution and respect.

It is estimated that over 80% of the world’s population and 60 million Americans use some form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). However, although many believe CAM compliments their current traditional healthcare, most do not inform their physicians that they are taking these products. And, many providers don’t ask or discuss CAM use with their patients, although one survey of 181 cardiologists found that half of them took antioxidant vitamins, themselves.

What many people don’t realize is that there is no regulatory agency in charge of the supplement industry. Herbal products are not tested for purity, effectiveness and safety as drugs are. In 1994, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) was enacted that requires the FDA to prove beyond any doubt that a supplement is unsafe before removing it from the market. Other than regulating what can be included on the label, they are unable to enforce any other regulation.

There is no incentive for supplement companies to conduct research because they are unable to patent ‘natural’ products. Those marketing herbs and other supplements save millions of dollars not spent on research, or worse, yet, conduct their own “research”, which often does not include rigorous controls. Although there are many excellent and reputable supplement companies on the market, the typical consumer is unlikely to know who the credible ones are. Many independent sales representatives only know what the company tells them, and are as unaware as the consumer.

Even if the supplements are pure and not harmful by themselves, problems arise when combined with drugs. Dietary supplements may compete with drugs, leading to toxicity or treatment failure of that drug. An estimated 4 million people are at risk for herbal-prescription drug interactions. Here is a list of the most common interactions between supplements and drugs:

* Warfarin (Coumadin) is used to prevent blood clotting for those at risk for deep vein thrombosis, stroke, or heart attack. Supplements that can change bleeding time controlled by this drug include flaxseed oil and fish oil supplements, goldenseal, saw palmetto, feverfew, garlic, ginseng, and willow bark, just to name a few.

* Digoxin is another heart medication. Ginseng has been noted to falsely elevate blood digoxin levels. Some herbs that will affect drug effectiveness include senna, licorice, aloe, cascara, hawthorne, foxglove, goldenseal and guar gum.

* Phenytoin is a drug used for seizures. Herbal interactions to be aware of include ginkgo biloba, white willow, lemon balm, skull cap, kava kava, and valerian root, to name a few. It is also important to know that Folate supplementation is necessary with Phenytoin, but excess Folate can be harmful.

* It’s important to take calcium supplements and vitamin D two hours apart from taking either Phenytoin or Digoxin in order to not interfere with these drug’s effects.

Of particular concern are interactions with the herb St. John’s Wort, which is taken by 7.5 million Americans as a depression remedy. This herb can cause serious consequences when taken with drugs such as Prozac, Zoloft, or Paxil, as well as warfarin, cyclosporine, and oral contraceptives. This herb may also interact with Digoxin, chemotherapy drugs, and other drugs, causing treatment failure. Some of these interactions are serious enough that if St. John’s Wort were a drug, the government would restrict marketing, make it a prescription-only item, or require label warnings.

So, what can one do??

Anyone taking a dietary supplement should first do their homework. Know exactly what the purpose of a particular supplement is for and learn all known interactions. There are many excellent informational websites on the internet. A good rule of thumb is to look for a site that does not offer products for sale!

It’s also important to inform your healthcare professional what supplements you are taking, in order to avoid potential supplement-drug interactions that could put you at medical risk. Although many credible professionals sell products, there are just as many who sell products but don’t really understand the physiology of the human body and are just out to make money. Supplement sales is a very popular ‘easy’ way to make money today!

It’s just as important to do one’s homework when looking for a complementary care practitioner. Although this is only one set of criteria, the best recommendation is to look for one or any of these: A pharmacist or registered dietitian who is educated in medicinal herbs, a physician who specializes in functional medicine, or an MD, OD, ND, DC, PharmD or RD who also has the CCN credential.

Don’t be afraid to take supplements. They serve a very beneficial purpose. But do know why you’re taking each supplement, just as you should know why you take any prescription medications. Be an informed consumer and take responsibility for your health and wellbeing.