Health Concerns

Cordyceps – Parasitic Caterpillar Fungus in Decline

Cordyceps, also known as caterpillar fungus, is an ancient Chinese tonic. It is credited for helping improve the performance of athletes, as it improves athletic performance and oxygen utilization. In double blind controlled studies conducted in China by Christopher B. Cooper, M.D., demonstrated that derivatives from the Tibetan mushroom Cordyceps sinensis can play a significant role in increasing energy and aerobic capacity. Other studies have shown that Cordyceps has a marked bronchodilation effect and is able to increase the effects of adrenaline.

Cordyceps is used in many Chinese cancer-support formulas. In addition, Chinese research indicates that Cordyceps may be useful for many conditions such as arrhythmia, heart failure, pulmonary heart disease, hyperlipidemia, cirrhosis, hepatitis, male impotence, chronic fatigue syndrome, drug toxicity (cyclosporine). Laboratory research has found that extractions of Cordyceps inhibit growth of microorganisms such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis, pneumococcus, and various disease causing fungi.

In terms of Chinese medicine, Cordyceps enters the lung and kidney channels. The traditional functions of Cordyceps include treating tuberculosis, deficiency-type cough, impotence, spermatorrheas, post-illness deficiency and weakness, spontaneous sweating, anemia. Additionally, it is a strong general tonifier and is used for health maintenance and disease prevention.

Cordyceps (dong chong xia cao), found fully in our Cordyceps PS™, tonifies kidney essence while strengthening lung yin, and also has anti-cancer and antibacterial activities. In addition, it is used to tonify after debilitating illness, and helps the other herbs in formulas like Clear Heat™ and CordySeng™, to enter the deepest areas of the body.

A recent article in this month’s South China Morning Post notes that due to trade and environmental issues the fungus is declining. The decline is so fast, they note that more systematic conservation efforts may be needed.

Read the article: http://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/health/article/1197235/parasitic-caterpillar-fungus-decline

2013 Flu Season the Worst in Ten Years

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has labeled the 2013 flu season as one of the worst in the last 10 years. Public officials in Boston declared a health emergency on Wednesday as flu sufferers flooded emergency rooms. The country is in the grip of three emerging flu or flu like epidemics: an early start to the annual flu season with an unusually aggressive virus, a surge in a new type of norovirus, and the worst whooping cough outbreak in 60 years.  In addition to the surge in flu cases, the C.D.C. said the United States was having its biggest outbreak of pertussis (whooping cough) in 60 years; there were about 42,000 confirmed cases, the highest total since 1955. The disease is unrelated to flu but causes a hacking, constant cough, and breathlessness.

The flu can kill up to 50,000 people a year. People with preexisting medical conditions, infants, and seniors are particularly vulnerable to the flu.

Be sure to check out our January Specials for Cold and Flu!


References:

“Flu Widespread, Leading a Range of Winter’s Ills “By DONALD G. McNEIL Jr. and KATHARINE Q. SEELYE,

New York Times, Bloomberg.com and CDC.gov

 

Food Allergies on the Rise

Between 2001 and 2005, researchers estimate that Americans made just over a million visits to the ER for allergic reactions to food.

These latest findings, reported in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, suggest that the numbers are now significantly higher.

“While severe, life-threatening food-related allergic reactions are still relatively uncommon, our study suggests that they are more common than previously thought,” lead researcher Sunday Clark, of the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania.

In a study published earlier this year, she and her colleagues found evidence that more children are turning up in ERs with serious food reactions than in years past.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three million school-aged children in the U.S. had a food allergy in 2007, which was up 18 percent from 10 years earlier.

No one is sure why food allergies are being diagnosed more frequently. One theory is that changes in kids’ diets are a contributor. Children today often eat excessive amounts of sugars, sweets, and allergens. Another theory, known as the “hygiene hypothesis,” holds that modern cleanliness provides less exposure to germs early in life and may make the immune system more prone to attack normally benign substances, including food proteins.

Comment: Allergies involve the immune system whereas intolerances do not. Allergies typically cause redness, itching, tightness of the throat, shortness of breath or anaphylactic shock. Intolerances tend to cause complex reactions such as digestive upset and or headaches, and worsen as you eat increasing amounts of the food.

The most common triggers of food allergies include milk, eggs, soy, fish, wheat, shellfish, peanuts, and tree nuts, like almonds, walnuts, and cashews.

Comment: Intolerances can include the above triggers and include gluten, corn, fructose, lactose and artificial additives.

Food allergy symptoms range from the relatively mild — limited to problems like tingling in the mouth, hives or upset stomach — to the more severe signs of anaphylaxis. Those include dizziness or fainting, difficulty breathing and a sudden drop in blood pressure that can lead to shock.

Excerpted from the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Online December 17, 2010. Comments Added.

Enteromend helps patients by reducing food reactions, removing gluten fragments and other foreign proteins, and reducing inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract. Health Concerns has protocols to reduce and prevent allergy symptoms. Andrew Gaeddert has also developed an eating program, The Digestive Clearing Plan that helps people identify their food intolerances. It is found in Andrew’s book Healing Digestive Disorders.

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