Issue Description

Healthy heart for a healthy minddownload

There is now convincing evidence to support the theory that a healthy cardiovascular system is connected to cognitive health, or to put it in simpler terms, a healthy body can contribute towards having a healthy mind. Whilst many factors can contribute to cognitive decline, Matthew Pase (Australia) has found that “looking after your heart, blood vessels and blood pressure may be one means to reduce the risk of both cardiovascular disease and Vascular Cognitive Impairment.”

He is part of a research team studying the effects of high blood pressure on cognitive health and has some suggestions for slowing down our physical and mental decline.

Matthew acknowledges that “researchers are still in the process of working out how best to preserve brain function in the face of increasing life expectancies. Many factors are likely to be important, not just cardiovascular health.”

Prostate cancer and omega-3

For some time fish oil has been promoted as essential for maintaining good health. Lately, doubt has been cast over these claims in relation to prostate cancer – “a new study has added to the confusion; the media has picked it up and scared men away from omega-3 supplements. Meanwhile some experts have criticized the authors’ methodology and conclusions”. Dr. Joel Fuhrman (USA) presents us with reasons for questioning the results of the study and offers practical strategies to ensure adequate intake of omega-3 fats.

 Natural dyes: colour, health and wellbeing

Kate Wells (UK) presents a thought-provoking discussion on the use of natural dyeing agents. She points out that “historically many dye plants were once regarded as possessing ‘magical properties’ with the power to heal and to keep evil away. Today many of these plants that can be used for dye extraction are classified as medicinal and in recent studies, have been shown to process remarkable antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral activity.” Her paper asks us to consider the potential benefits that might be had from natural dyes –  “What possibilities exist within the chemical

nature of certain natural dyes to help with healing and well-being? In the future, will we be wearing clothes dyed with such colours from Nature that we will be able to enhance our well-being, as well as be fashionable?”

 Canker sores – natural treatments

Canker sores, or mouth ulcers, can be very painful and annoying, particularly if they interfere with eating or drinking. Whilst eating certain types of food can be a cause, Dr Lisa Watson  (Canada) points out that  “there are many causes of canker sores – most people who get them have no idea why.  There is a genetic component with approximately one third of people who get canker sores having a family history of the disorder.”

Dr Watson has some suggestions on maintaining oral health as well as some natural treatments for this unpleasant condition.

 Coconut oil – where’s the evidence?

Once considered an unhealthy form of fat, coconut oil is now recognised as a beneficial adjunct to a healthy diet. We have had many articles on coconut oil and what it can do for a range of health issues (including Alzheimer’s disease – see issues 5 & 6). In this issue Dr. Bruce Fife (USA) presents part one of an article in which he discusses the evidence in support of the claims made about coconut oil.

He points out that “many doctors, dieticians and other health care professionals have been reluctant to accept coconut oil as a health food. Coconut oil contains a high percentage of saturated fat. Saturated fats have been condemned for so many years, that they find it hard to change their opinions, even when faced with evidence to the contrary”.

 Adrenal exhaustion

Are you chronically tired or stressed? It’s a good chance that your adrenals glands are being pushed to the max – “In today’s world it is almost inevitable that most people will experience some degree of adrenal exhaustion at some point in their lives.” Dr. Sandra Cabot (Australia) presents her thoughts on adrenal gland exhaustion in which she explains symptoms, causes and solutions.

 Putting Nature into nurture

Many children today have very limited contact with Nature, spending much of their lives indoors instead. Contrary to what many people might think there is now a school of thought promoting the idea that it is healthy for children to have contact with soil. We present part 2 of Karen Martin’s (Australia) interesting paper on the effects of natural surroundings on the development of children. “While the concept that nature provides restoration for mental fatigue arising from prolonged attention arose in the 1990s, more recent theories have been proposed, for example the provision of physiological benefits from nature, such inhaling or ingesting beneficial soil bacteria”.  

Carpal tunnel

Dr Emily Kane (USA) presents some natural treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome and ganglion cysts. As anyone who has suffered from carpal tunnel will attest, it can be very painful and interfere with one’s day-to-day life. Dr Kane explains that  “when the structures of the wrist become inflamed and swollen from overuse, the pressure from the swelling can cause pressure on the nerves, especially on the palm side of the wrist, and this can indeed be very painful.” She offers several suggestions on how to prevent the occurrence of carpal tunnel syndrome as well as an exercise to keep the wrist joint supple. She also has some suggestions on how to treat ganglion cysts.

Peptic ulcers – address the cause

Peptic ulcers are a common complaint and great for the antacid industry. In this issue Sherry Brescia (USA) explains why antacids and antibiotics only offer temporary relief for those with peptic ulcers. Her approach is to address the root cause and maintain a healthy gut to prevent ulcers from occurring. “If you have H. Pylori, ulcers, acid reflux or any other digestive ailment, and especially if you’re relying on antacids, it’s not only a good idea to eat foods that encourage efficient digestion, it’s essential. Poor digestion is a primary cause of most GI problems, and all antacids do is mask your symptoms.”

 What is ……..?

We take a detailed look at Manuka honey, a honey sourced from New Zealand and reputed for its healing properties.


For those of you with a sweet tooth, we present a pictorial guide from Dr. Ben Kim (Canada) for his healthy fudge.

Gentle approach to dementia patients

We include a video from Dr. Cameron Camp (USA), an Alzheimer’s and dementia specialist in which he explains how using an approach based on the theory of educator Maria Montessori has found to be helpful when dealing with patients with these conditions.

Humans and long distance running part 2 – Dr. Bramble was unable to provide his article for this issue. It will be in the next issue.