“By researching your (own) condition, you can make suggestions to your physician. Together you can create an educated plan to address the obstacles to your health.” ~ Holly Lucille, RN, ND
“There’s a pill for that … and that …”
70 percent of Americans, or about 228 million of us, take prescription drugs. Meanwhile, it’s estimated that 133 million have an illness classified as “long-term.”
Before there were prescription pills for seemingly every sickness, people researched – and to some extent, still do – a variety of potential methods to treat the biological, emotional, physical, and nutritional effects of illness. Many effective products – herbs, spices, plants, trees – continue to be sold today (more on this later!)
While the progression of “modern medicine” is beneficial and even life-saving, many people in developed countries have embraced a “Just pop a pill” attitude. Unfortunately, millions of licensed physicians are doing little to stop the pharmaceutical drug craze.
Just look at the prescription drug abuse numbers. Per the National Institute on Drug abuse, 48 million people have used prescription drugs for nonmedical reasons in their lifetime. This figure equates to approximately 1 in every 5 American citizens.
Now the United States (and some other parts of the world) is facing an opioid epidemic. Young adults, some still in high school, are overdosing on pain pills like morphine, Vicodin, and Dilaudid. The abuse of pain medication is the newest addition in the prescription drug crisis, joining the realms of kids and adults abusing prescription stimulants designed for Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and its hyperactive kin, ADHD.
Looking at OTC’s
What does all of this mean for, say, the common cold or flu? Well, it turns out that even over-the-counter (OTC), non-prescription medicines contain some pretty nasty stuff, the effects of which can be potent. This may explain why one in ten teenagers abuse OTC cough medicines to get high.
Yeah, that DayQuil or Robitussin in your med cabinet isn’t harmless. Both contain dextromethorphan, a subclass of psychoactive drugs. They are, in effect, commercially-available (though less potent) forms of morphine. Both can damage the liver and even cause shock.
And it isn’t just cough medicine, either. Motion sickness pills and pain relievers are often abused for reasons ranging from a psychedelic high to chronic pain. Apparently, chronic pain isn’t a good enough reason for many to steer clear of overly-dangerous medicines, say, most painkillers.
The thing is: most people don’t know what you’re about to know – that natural cures are out there.
“…the practice of integrative medicine is gaining popularity and many mainstream medical practitioners now fully embrace and trust some of the better-studied alternative approaches, such as acupuncture…” ~ Dr. Mehmet Oz (a.k.a. “Dr. Oz”)
To illustrate the main point that nature can (often) potentially cure common ailments with natural ingredients, here they are.
5 Common Ailments That Have Natural Cures
1. Brain Fog: Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are critical for the neurological system, including the brain, where it is highly concentrated. Brain fog is a term used to describe cloudy or fatigued thinking that is exacerbated by external stressors.
In numerous studies, increasing omega-3 intake relieved many symptoms of brain fog – including poor concentration and memory. Omega-3’s anti-inflammatory properties help to explain this improvement.
2. Common Cold: Garlic
In a meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials, researchers found that individuals who supplemented with garlic (example: 180 mg daily for 12 weeks) reported fewer occurrences of the common cold compared to the no-garlic group (16 percent and 45 percent, respectively), and fewer days of sickness (111 days to 366 days.)
Garlic is believed to have potent antimicrobial and antiviral properties that help relieve the common cold, which may help to explain this outcome.
3. Acid Reflux, Heartburn, and Indigestion: Baking Soda
Baking soda is made up of 100 percent sodium bicarbonate – a natural antacid. Actually, while baking soda may have hundreds of potential uses, it is labeled as a possible cure for heartburn, indigestion, and acid reflux!
Per Healthline.com, baking soda “is a good treatment for immediate relief from acid reflux.” On this note, the recommended dosage for adults is 1/2 teaspoon dissolved in a 4-ounce glass of water. Drink the mix slowly to avoid gas, and repeat every couple of hours.
4. Fever Blisters: Lemon Balm
Fever blisters suck; they hurt and can be embarrassing to the sufferer. According to a 2012 study published in the journal Chemotherapy, lemon balm “demonstrated a high viricidal activity … and inhibited attachment to host-cells,” say the authors.
In other words, lemon balm kills the virus that causes cold sores and fever blisters while blocking the growth of additional blister-causing cells.
5. Chronic Stress: Panax Ginseng & Acute Stress: Gingko Biloba
In a study conducted by the Division of Pharmacology at the Central Drug Research Institute, researchers found that Panax ginseng “has significant anti-stress properties and can be used for the treatment of stress-related disorders.” Still another study found that supplementing Panax ginseng lowers not only the stress hormone cortisol but also triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Gingko Biloba was also studied – and found to be more effective for acute stress than Panax ginseng.