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    High blood pressure, or hypertension, is known as “the silent killer” because there are often no symptoms.  It is estimated that up to 25 percent of Americans have this condition, and about half of them don’t know it.  This is serious; hypertension is associated with stroke, congestive heart failure, heart attack, atherosclerosis, kidney disease, disease of the retina, blood vessel rupture, and weakened memory and mental ability.

    There are two main categories of high blood pressure; secondary hypertension is caused by other diseases and subsides when these are treated; primary hypertension accounts for 90 percent of all cases of high blood pressure and is due to lifestyle factors and inherited susceptibility.  It responds well to lifestyle changes.  These need to be made under a doctor’s supervision if a person is taking a blood pressure lowering drug.

    The following are some methods to lower blood pressure:

    1.  Lose weight.  Obesity is one of the most important contributors to high blood pressure.  Sixty to seventy percent of hypertension is directly attributed to increased body fat.

    2.  Utilize a low-salt diet.  The body must raise the blood pressure to enable the kidneys to cope with a high salt intake.  Don’t assume that just because you have taken the salt shaker off the table you are on a low salt diet.  Eighty percent of our salt comes hidden in processed foods.  Read the labels; educate yourself on how much salt is in the foods you eat, and make a specific plan to reduce sodium intake to less than 2,000 mg/day.

    3.  Eliminate caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.  All of these substantially raise the blood pressure.

    4.  Learn to control stress.  The stress response in the body raises the blood pressure, and unrelieved stress keeps it high.  Overwork and worry are major contributors to hypertension.

    5.  Adopt an aerobic exercise program such as brisk walking.  Exercise at least 3 days a week for 45 minutes.  Exercise strengthens the heart and enables it to pump more efficiently.  A regular exercise program significantly reduces blood pressure.
    
    6.  Eat oatmeal and green leafy vegetables.  These have been shown to reduce blood pressure.

 
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    Cancer is the number two killer in this country.  More than 1500 people a day die from cancer - the equivalent of three jumbo jets crashing each day, every day.  These are appalling statistics, especially since many cancers are preventable.  Currently, one in every two men and one in every three women will be diagnosed with cancer at some time in their lives.

    The American Cancer Society defines cancer as “a group of diseases characterized by uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells.”  In a healthy body the immunes system quickly identifies and destroys cancer cells when they first occur, but the typical American lifestyle and diet predispose the body to develop cancer by introducing carcinogens to the body and handicapping the immune system.

    Adopting a cancer protective lifestyle can reduce your risk by up to 90 percent.  Here are seven suggestions for success.

    1.  Avoid factors that favor cancer development.  Use of tobacco and alcohol play a part in about 44 percent of all cancers.  Meat and dairy products, excess fat, sugar, cholesterol, and sunshine have all been linked to one or more kinds of cancer.  Other cancer causing agents have been found in coffee, chocolate, asbestos, wood dust, and a host of toxic chemicals from deodorant sprays to pesticides.

    2.  Eat a proper diet.  A high-fiber low-protein diet featuring a wide variety of fruits and vegetables has many cancer-inhibiting components.

    3.  Eat regular meals with nothing between them except water.  Research shows that those eating four meals a day have double the risk of colon and rectal cancer as compared to those who eat only two meals per day.

    4.  Exercise daily.  This will enhance your immunity and improve circulation.

    5.  Obtain moderate sun exposure.  It enhances the immune system and decreases the risk of various kinds of cancer.  Vitamin D, produced by sunlight on the skin, suppresses abnormal cell growth.

    6.  Maintain proper weight.  Excess body weight can increase cancer risk by as much as 55 percent.


    7.  Learn stress control.  Stress depresses the immune system and is a major risk factor in cancer development.  

    Many people have experienced a slowing down or complete disappearance of tumor growth by making these adjustments.  Lifestyle changes should be a part of any cancer treatment and maintenance program.

 
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    Smoking is not only hazardous to your health - it can be hazardous to your job prospects as well.  Twice as many smokers are out of work as non-smokers.  Though few will admit it, most employers would reject a smoker competing for a job with an equally qualified nonsmoker.

DON’T YOU THINK THE RISKS OF SMOKING ARE BEING EXAGGERATED?

    No way!  For example, smokers at Dow Chemical, when compared to nonsmokers, had six days more absenteeism, eight days more disability, and 12 percent more illness, costing the company $4,760 more per smoker per year.  
    

    The hard facts consistently point to tobacco as the deadliest drug in the world.  Last year it killed nearly 450,000 Americans - more than all who died from ADIS, street drugs, fires, car crashes, and homicides combined.  It also kills thousands more involuntary smokers - persons forced to breathe secondhand smoke.

HOW DOES SMOKING CAUSE LUNG CANCER?

    Normally your lungs’ air passages are lined with millions of tiny hairs called cilia.  The cilia act like little brooms protecting the air tubes by sweeping dusts, tar, and other foreign materials gradually upward, like escalators, until they can be spit out.
    

    Every time is blast of tobacco smoke hits these cilia, however, they slow down, and soon stop moving.  As a result, the trapped tars from the tobacco smoke begin boring into the cells lining the air tubes.  Over time, this constant irritation turns some of the cells cancerous.
    

    This transformation takes many years.  But once it begins, the cancer steadily eats its way deeper into the lung.  By the time it is discovered, it’s usually too late.

IS LUNG CANCER THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IN SMOKERS?

    No. Tobacco causes 128,000 lung cancer deaths per year in the United States. In contrast, smoking is responsible for 181,000 heart attacks and strokes.

The nicotine and carbon monoxide in tobacco smoke are the main culprits that promote vascular disease. Nicotine constricts small arteries depriving the heat, brain, lungs, and other important areas of vital oxygen. Nicotine also produces a sense of relaxation and well-being - smoking’s main appeal. But nicotine is also addictive.

Carbon monoxide interferes directly with the ability of red blood cells to carry oxygen. This causes shortness of breath, lack of endurance, and acceleration of arteriosclerosis (narrowing and hardening of the arteries).

THAT’S A LOT OF BAD NEWS. IS THERE MORE?

Unfortunately there is a lot more.

* Smokers have much more cancer of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, pancreas, bladder, kidneys, and cervix than do nonsmokers.

* Emphysema gradually destroys lung tissue, producing death by suffocation. In the United States 71,000 of these grisly deaths occur each year as a result of smoking.

* Ulcers of the stomach and duodenum are 60 percent more common in smokers.

* Smoking pulls calcium out of the skeleton, accelerating the bone-thinning process known as osteoporosis.

* Smoking during pregnancy has an adverse effect on fetal development and increases the risk of death after birth up to 35 percent.

IF A PERSON HAS SMOKED HEAVILY FOR A LONG TIME, DOES IT PAY TO QUIT?

About 85 percent of lung cancers and 50 percent of bladder cancers could be prevented if people simply stopped smoking.

Smokers who quit begin to heal almost immediately. As the nicotine and carbon monoxide leave the body, the smoking-related risk for heart disease decreases dramatically. Although the risk for cancer decreases more slowly, the danger lessens as the weeks and months go by.

There are other payoffs to quitting: a sense of victory, increased self-esteem, pleasant breath, better tasting food, increased endurance, improved health and energy, a feeling of well-being, and freedom from an habit. Quitting may also open the way to more job opportunities.

Americans often overreact to the most trivial of risks while ignoring much more substantial threats to their health and safety. For example, every second smoker will die from some disease directly connected to the habit. Smokers will also lose an average of 8.3 years from their normal life expectancy, or 13 minutes for every cigarette smoked. Yet many people react more forcefully to evidence of a on-in-a-million risk of getting cancer from chemicals found in drinking water!

It’s time to get life back into perspective. The biggest favor you can do for your body is to kick the habit and freely breathe clean air again.

DID YOU KNOW that smoking kills 1,200 Americans a day and costs $1 billion a week in extra health-care and insurance costs, while the U.S. government collects $12 billion a year in tobacco taxes.

HOW SMOKING KILLS

Tobacco use kills and maims primarily by promoting vascular diseases and various cancers.

VASCULAR DISEASES: Heart attacks - smoking is responsible for 30 percent of the annual 550,000 US coronary deaths.

Stroke - responsible for 25 percent of the annual strokes.
Peripheral vascular disease - about 90 percent of leg and thigh blockages occur in smokers.

CANCERS: Lung - 85 percent because of smoking. Bladder and Kidneys - 3 times more frequent in smokers. Mouth, larynx, esophagus - 2-2.5 times more prevalent in smokers.

KICKING THE HABIT

The first step in breaking any habit is to decide that you are going to change. It’s not enough just to want to change or to imagine that you will change someday. Breaking an addiction to tobacco requires positive commitment.

REASONS TO QUIT SMOKING

* Quitting is the single most important thing you can do for your health and longevity.

* Reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancer of the lungs, mouth, throat, pancreas, bladder, kidneys, and cervix.

* Reduced risk of emphysema and osteoporosis.

* Elimination of the risk posed to the smoker’s family from second-hand smoke.

* Less chance of a smoker’s children and grandchildren smoking.

* Better breath, whiter teeth, and fewer wrinkles.

* Less time spent sick, more physical endurance.

* Lower medical and insurance costs.

The list goes on, and it grows every year as we learn more about the harmful effects of tobacco.

You have everything to gain by kicking the habit- longer life, better health, more vitality, fewer medical expenses and the air is fresher, food tastes better, wallets are fatter, age is longer, life is sweeter!



 
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    Heart disease and strokes cause nearly half of all deaths in America, and severely reduce the quality of life for many people.  Both diseases have the same underlying cause, which is atherosclerosis, a condition in which cholesterol, fat, and calcium harden, narrow, and eventually plug the arteries.  This process takes many years and gives virtually no clues until the arteries have 50 to 80 percent blockage.

    While there are some risk factors for cardiovascular disease that we can’t change, such as age and sex, there are some that we can do something about.  According to the Framingham Heart Study the six most important modifiable risk factors are high cholesterol, cigarette smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, and physical inactivity.

Cholesterol


     The amount of cholesterol in the blood is one of the three most important risk factors for atherosclerosis.

    Research shows that the risk of death from heart disease increases when cholesterol exceeds 150 mg/dl.  However that is not the whole picture.  Cholesterol comes in two forms; LDL (the bad kind) and HDL (the good kind).  HDL actually protects us from atherosclerosis by removing cholesterol from the arteries.  An HDL level of 75 mg/dl drops heart disease risk to near zero, while a level of 25 mg/dl or lower raises the risk very high.

    An especially harmful type of cholesterol (oxidized cholesterol) is found in Parmesan cheese, lard, dry mixes that contain powdered milk or eggs, such as custard and pancake mixes, and other processed foods containing cholesterol and sugar.  Some of the chemicals in oxidized cholesterol are so toxic they can cause irreversible damage to arterial walls in less than 24 hours.

    Another factor is the type of fat in the diet Saturated fat (S) is more effective at raising cholesterol levels than dietary cholesterol itself is.  The type of protein consumed also affects cholesterol levels.  Animal protein increases blood cholesterol levels while plant protein decreases it. Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fats tend to raise HDL (good) cholesterol.

                 

Eight Keys to Heart Disease


    There are eight keys to preventing, treating, and reversing heart disease.  They are so effective that if every American followed them 90 percent of heart attacks could be prevented.

    1.  Reduce blood cholesterol.  Levels less than 150 mg/dl will reduce the risk of heart attack by 60 to 90 percent.

    2.  Eat a plant based diet.  All the cholesterol we eat comes from animal products; plant foods contain no cholesterol.  To remove all cholesterol from the diet all animal products must be eliminated.

    3.  Increase dietary fiber.  It absorbs cholesterol in the digestive tract and removes it.

    4.  Decrease blood levels of fat.  Sugar, fat, and alcohol increase the amount of fat in the blood.  Fat promotes plaque buildup in the arteries and stimulates the blood to clot, increasing the risk of heart disease.

    5.  Stop smoking.  Over a period of five years this will reduce your risk of heart attack by 50 to 75 percent.

    6.  Start a regular aerobic exercise program.  This raises HDL so effectively it can reduce the risk of heart disease by over 45 percent in those who are unfit.

    7.  Reach and maintain your ideal body weight.  Losing weight can cut heart disease risk by 35 to 55 percent in those who are more than 20 percent over their ideal weight.

    8.  Reduce blood pressure.  A ten point reduction in blood pressure reduces heart disease risk 20 to 30 percent in those with high blood pressure.

    Many people have experienced very good results from implementing these principles.  As results from implementing these principles.  As artery blockage reverses, angina pains have cleared up, and an active normal life has again become possible.

 
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SYMPTOMS - Body stiffness and pain in joins, especially during damp weather, in the morning, or after strenuous activity. There may be a sharp burning or grinding pain or it may feel like a toothache. There may be stiffness and/or pain when moving a joint.

CAUSES - Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more joints. The word, “arthritis,” covers a number of disorders, some of which are covered in this present article, which deals the most completely with the problem.

The most common forms are osteoarthritis (this article), rheumatoid arthritis

(Part II), grout, and ankylosing sodalities. Other diseases which also infect the joints include lupus, Lyme disease, psoriatic arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome, and Reiter’s syndrome.

The various types of arthritis affect the movable joints, which are the fingers, toes, wrists, elbows, hips, and knees. There are also joints between the bones of the spine. Each joint has cartilage covering over the end of the bone and is bathed continually in synovial fluid, in a capsule.

As a result of years of wear and improper diet, this cartilage becomes pitted, thin, and may even disappear. There is pain and stiffness. Older people experience this most often, and it generally occurs in the weight-bearing joints (hips and knees).

The connecting ligaments and muscles, which hold the joint together, become weaker. The joint may become deformed. There may be pain, but usually no swelling. Later, bony outgrowths may develop.

Osteoarthritis rarely occurs before 40, but affects most people after 60. Sometimes it is so mild as to be unnoticed. Women have it three times as often as men.

TREATMENT:

* Arthritis is the result of a complex of nutritional deficiencies.

* A dietary calcium/phosphorous ratio of 2:1 is ideal, yet can only be attained by taking calcium supplements. Meat is especially bad; it has a ratio of 1:12 (organ meats, such as liver and kidney) is 1:44. So the more meat you eat, the more calcium you need. It is as simple as that.

* In addition, there are all the acid purines and uric acid in meat. Eventually this hodgepodge of acids collects in the joints to such a degree that the bone is eaten away, the bursa becomes inflamed, etc.

* The sulfur-containing foods (asparagus, eggs, garlic, and onions) help repair bone, cartilage, and connective tissue. They also aid in the absorption of calcium.

* Eat green leafy vegetables, whole grains, oatmeal, and brown rice. These supply vitamin K.

* Eat fresh pineapple frequently. The bromelain in it is good for reducing inflammation. It must be fresh, since freezing or canning destroys the enzyme.

* The most beneficial vegetables include celery, parsley, alfalfa, wheat grass, garlic, comfrey, and endive.

* The most beneficial fruits include bananas, pineapples, sour apples, and sour cherries.

* Food containing the amino acid, histidine, include wheat, rye, and rice. Histidine helps remove metals, and many arthritics have high levels of copper and iron in their bodies.

* Eat some form of fiber, such as oat bran, rice bran, flaxseed, etc.

* Vegetable juice therapy is especially helpful for arthritics, and especially for those with rheumatoid arthritis.

Repeated juice fasts of 4-6 weeks are recommended, along with about 2 months of an extremely nourishing diet. The alkaline action of raw juices and vegetable broth dissolves the accumulation of deposits around the joints and in other tissues.

* Green juice, mixed with carrot, celery, red beet juice, and vegetable broths daily, are specifics for arthritis and other rheumatic diseases.

* Drink raw potato juice. Slice a potato with the skin on, cut it into thin slices and place in a large glass. Fill the glass with cold water and let it stand overnight. Drink the water the next morning on an empty stomach.

* Potato juice can also be made in a electric juicer. Make it fresh, dilute it 50-50 with water, and drink first thing in the morning.

* Milk, wheat, eggs, corn, and pork have been shown to produce arthritic symptoms.

* Vitamin C is necessary, to prevent the capillary walls in the joints from breaking down and causing bleeding, swelling, and pain. Vitamin C is vital to joint health.

* Folic acid, vitamin B12, and iron in food help treat the anemia which frequently accompanies arthritis.

* Helpful herbs include parsley, slippery elm, alfalfa, peppermint, and burdock root.

* DMSO (dimethyl suffixed) is a by-product of the wood industry. It can be applied to the skin above the affected area - to relieve pain, reduce swelling, and promote healing. Only obtain it from a health food store.

* Do not eat meat, avoid salt, caffeine, tobacco, paprika, and citrus fruits. Do not eat anything with added sugar. Chocolate, tea, and coffee may also cause problems. Reduce the amount of at in your diet.

 

ARTHRITIS - Rheumatoid Arthritis

SYMPTOMS - vague pain, stiffness, weight loss, numbness, and tingling of the hands and feet may precede its onset. 

Swelling, stiffness, redness, and often crippling pain in joints, which eventually may fuse together. There is fatigue, anemia, weight loss, and fever.

Affected joints sound like crinkling cellephane. In contrast, osteoarthritis joints sound like popping, clicking, or banging. Joints of the hands, elbows, knees, and ankles are most commonly involved.

Upon awakening in the morning, there may be a joint stiffness which lasts an hour or longer. Swelling will occur in a specific finger or wrist joints, and also around the joints. Pain may, or may not, be present.

The condition can worsen or remain the same for years, and later worsen again.

 

CAUSES - Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory arthritis. It is an autoimmune disorder. So many acids, purines, etc., have collected in the joints; and the calcium supply has been so low for so long, that the body gets mixed up - and begins attacking the synovial membranes in the joints. Cartilage, nearby tissues, and even the bone surfaces are destroyed.

This damaged area is then replaced with scar tissue, which tends to fuse together the joints - making them immovable.

Oddly enough, this form of arthritis most commonly occurs between the ages of 35 and 45, but may occur at any age. It also occurs even in children. Two-thirds of the

3 million Americans who have RA are women. Among those under 18, about 70,000 have it, most of them girls.

Causes include poor nutrition, bacterial infection, and/or physical or emotional stress. Stress seems to be the active agent which initially brings it on. Exposure, overwork, or acute infections can also do it.

Unlike osteoarthritis (Part I), which only affects joints here or there, RA affects all the synovial joints in the body.

In the first year after the disease appears, 75% improve without any treatment at all. Therefore natural treatments should help the situation even more. Keep in mind that 10% of those with RA become disfigured in one way or another. So this is a problem which is worth taking the time and effort to reduce or eliminate.

The likelihood of remission is greater early in the course of the disease. Each attack seems to be worse than those preceding it.

 

TREATMENT:

* It is important that you also read the article on “Arthritis” (Part I). It contains much important information which also applies to rheumatoid arthritis.

* Take calcium, magnesium, selenium, copper, B6, histidine, and bromelain everyday.

* Do not take iron supplements (such as ferrous sulfate, which is commonly given for anemia). These will intensify RA and arthritis.

* Fasting brings temporary relief to RA, but the pain, swelling, and stiffness tend to return a few days after the fast is ended. However, some recommend a longer vegetable juice and vegetable broth fast of two or more weeks as having more lasting effects.

* Food allergies can be involved. One study showed that 86% of a group of rheumatoid arthritics could trace the onset of their problem to allergies; most common were soy products, milk, eggs, coffee, and sugar foods. Try avoiding all those foods.

* One research study noted that peoples who use large quantities of wheat, rye, and oats tend to have high rates of RA

* People with RA were found to have lower blood levels of folic acid, protein, and zinc than other people.

* Lose weight, to reduce the strain on your joints.

* Stretch nylon gloves, worn at night, help keep the hands warm. Better yet, keep your arms and hands under the covers at night.

* Deep breathing exercises out-of-doors helps those with RA.

* Alternating hot and cold baths help. Give 6 minutes for the hot and 4 minutes for the cold, to increase blood flow to the area. The healing is in the blood.

* Aloe vera gel helps relieve pain

* Exercise is very important in both preventing and treating. Joints which are not used tend to stiffen. Practice bending all your joints in different positions, 5-10 times twice a day.

* Sleeping in a sleeping bag often reduce stiffness and pain in the morning. An electric blanket may also help. Keeping the body evenly warm at night is important.

* Charcoal poultices may be applied to affected joints.

* Hot packs applied to stiff joints tend to decrease morning stiffness.

* Reduce stress in your life. Worry, anger, and similar emotions weaken your body and help induce arthritic problems.

ENCOURAGEMENT - Think back over the past and recall to mind all the ways God has helped you through the years. Praise Him for what He has done, and continues to do for you. Stay close to Him and trust the future to Him. He will not fail you, even though you may not understand all the workings of providence. (Isaiah 61: 1-3)

 

 

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