Posts Tagged ‘anemia’

Popeye was almost right

But he should have eaten fresh spinach instead of canned. It’s a great source of iron, which increases the health of your blood, especially red blood cells. Red blood cells in turn feed your muscles, among many other things, and in turn, gives you energy and strength.

The absorbed iron is transported as plasma ferritin and stored in liver, spleen, bone marrow and kidney. When red cells are broken down, the liberated iron is reutilized in the formation of new red cells. Iron is necessary for oxygen transport and cell growth by helping the blood transport oxygen from the lungs to the tissue cells where it is needed.

Are you getting enough iron?

Iron deficiency symptoms include: Pale skin & nail beds, fatigue, irritability, dizziness, weakness, shortness of breath, sore tongue and mouth, light headed, brittle nails, decreased appetite (especially in children), headache, weakness. Other symptoms include heartburn, gas, vague abdominal pains, numbness and tingling in the extremities, heart palpitation, and sores at the corners of the mouth.

What causes the malabsorption of iron?

Deficiency Vitamin C, because Vitamin C aides in iron absorption. In men and postmenopausal women, anemia is usually due to blood loss associated with ulcers, the use of aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS), or colon cancer.

Iron is mostly absorbed from duodenum (part of the intestines) and upper small intestine. So if you have any digestive issues or food sensitivities, you could be at risk for anemia.

Phytate, which is found in some whole grains and legumes, can limit iron absorption. Soy, which is a good vegetarian source of iron, contains phytate and certain proteins that interfere with iron absorption. Other foods that obstruct iron absorption include coffee, tea (including some herbal), cocoa, calcium, fiber and some spices.

Some iron loss occurs naturally. The total daily iron loss of an adult is about 1 mg and about 2 mg in menstruating women.

 

Daily Requirements of Iron

Children, men and women according to age have different nutritional needs. Please see chart below for guidelines.

Children
7 mos – 1 yr 11 mg         1 yr – 4 yrs 7 mg

4 yrs – 8 yrs 10 mg          9 yrs – 13 yrs 8 mg

Men
14 yrs – 18 yrs 11 mg        19 yrs + 8 mg

Women

14 yrs – 18 yrs 15 mg

19 yrs – 50 yrs 18 mg
51 + yrs 8 mg

Pregnant 27 mg

Lactating 14 yrs – 18 yrs 10 mg
19 + yrs     9 mg

 

Sources of Iron

Food                         Iron in mg             Food                       Iron in mg

Black beans              7.9                               Tofu                         4.6
Garbanzos                6.9                               Lima beans             4.5
Pintos                       6.1                              Lentils                     6.6
Navy                         5.1                                Split peas               3.4
Soybeans                 8.8                           Kidney Beans         5.2

Fresh Peas              2.9                            Tempeh                    2.2

 

Vegetables (1 cup cooked)

Spinach                   6.4                             Kale                       1.8
Beet greens            2.8                             Acorn squash         1.7
Swiss chard            4.0                             Brussels sprouts   1.7
Tomato juice           2.2                             Potato w/skin         1.4
Butternut squash    2.1                              Beets                      1.0

Fruit

Prune juice (1 cup)  10.5                            Dates (10)              2.4
Dried peach             5 3.9                            Prunes                   1.8
Raisins, ½ cup        2.6                          Strawberries, 1 cup   1.5

Grains (¼ cup dry)
Rice bran                     10.8                    Wheat bran/germ      1.9
Quinoa                         4.6                     Cream of wheat           8.1
Millet                            3.9                      Oat or cornmeal         0.7

Seeds (approximately ¼ cup)

Pumpkin seeds           4.0                    Sunflower seeds          2.4

Hemp Seeds              13.6

Miscellaneous

Blackstrap molasses  3.2                  Brewer’s yeast, 1 tbs        1.4
Tahini 2 tbsp               2.7                   Cashews ¼ cup               2.0

 

So next time your at the farmers market, pick up some some kale and spinach and add them to your black bean chili or next soup. Or top your green salad with pumpkin seeds.  Not only will it taste great, but you’ll feel more energized.

Live natural. Live well.

Heather

Chinese Medicine and Cancer

Chinese medicine offers relief from the symptoms and side effects related to cancer and cancer treatments. Acupuncture causes physical responses in nerves cells, the pituitary gland, and various parts of the brain, which in turn affects blood pressure and body temperature. In addition, Acupuncture boosts the immune system, relieves stress and anxiety, and causes the body’s natural painkillers to be released.

It is the side effects related to chemotherapy and radiation that often cause extreme distress for the cancer patient. Some of the side effects that Chinese medicine helps alleviate, include, but are not limited to: nausea/vomiting, fatigue, weakened immunity, stress, anxiety, pain, bruising, post operative swelling, hair loss, anemia, skin issues, hot flashes, digestive disorders, loss of appetite, and detoxification/elevated liver enzymes.

Chinese medicine also reduces many cancer-related symptoms. Acupuncture treatments add to a patient’s sense of wellbeing and decrease the malaise associated with any chronic disease, especially cancer.

Human studies at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) on the effect of acupuncture on the immune system of cancer patients showed that it improved immune system response. It was proven that acupuncture reduced the amount of pain in some cancer patients. In one study, most of the patients treated with acupuncture were able to stop taking drugs for pain relief or to take smaller doses. Several types of clinical trials using different acupuncture methods showed acupuncture reduced nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy and surgery.

Nutritional and herbal support aids in boosting immune response in cancer patients, along with minimizing the immune and white blood cell suppression that occurs with most chemotherapeutic agents. Kenneth Conklin, M.D., Ph.D., an anesthesiologist at UCLA working with the Oncology Department, reports gratifying results utilizing nutrition and supplements combined with acupuncture.

Fighting cancer might be one of the most challenging things a person has to deal with. Why not let Chinese medicine support you on the road to a full recovery?

My First Blog Post

Hello and welcome to LiveNaturalLiveWell.com!  Come here every week to find all the latest info on health related topics as well as tips for how you can heal your body and the environment.  I am thrilled to be starting this blog. So to kick things off I thought I would tell you a little bit about myself and how I got started.  People are always asking me, “Heather, how did you get interested in Chinese medicine?”  It started when I was a teenager and I had two major health incidents.

The first was when I was 14 and I had a severe case of mono that flared up off and on for almost a year.  I missed over 2 months of school and had to give up swimming because I was so weak.  I was constantly seeing my doctor and he didn’t have any advice on how to heal from this very common illness.  He literally said, “There’s nothing you can do.”  After this illness took its course, I couldn’t help but wonder if there was any information out there besides what my doctor was telling me.

The second health event happened when I was just turning 15, and like many young people in America, I was a junk food junky.  But after learning about the conditions of the meat industry and animal treatment, I decided to become a vegetarian.  Like the good student I was, I went to my doctor to get any nutritional expertise I could find.  He had no idea what to do with me, besides saying “Make sure you get enough protein.”  I remember feeling so confused.  If doctors are supposed to help people, why doesn’t he have any specific guidance about my nutrition and wellbeing?  It seemed that if I wasn’t sick or injured, there wasn’t anything he could do for me.

Well, it turns out that I was sick. I was anemic for almost two years, and that was when I realized I would need to go beyond my doctors to find appropriate nutritional support.  This led me to start studying nutrition, herbs, and supplements on my own.  I loved reading anything health related, especially holistic medicine.  I found out better ways to eat vegetarian and that mono is treatable.  More profoundly I learned that there is never one answer to a solution, no quick fixes, and no magic pills.  As I studied nutrition more I was fascinated to learn that there are so many different ways in which our bodies can get out of balance and that this affects our wellbeing.  Over the years, I kept learning purely out of curiosity.  I had no idea that one day I would be doing this for a living!

I found out later that M.D.s have very little nutritional training, just a few hours in fact.  Also, many (but not all!) doctors will just say nothing can be done or nothing is wrong because tests results are normal.  I see this almost daily in my private practice.  Patients come in desperate, because their doctors didn’t have the tools to help them get better.

After college, I moved to Los Angeles.  That was when I realized I could do what I love for a career.  At this point, friends were regularly asking me for advice, and I didn’t always have the answers.  I don’t always have the answers now, but with my training and continued studies, I have the tools to do what I really want to do: help and empower others to be healthy and live a fuller life.

I would like to encourage those of you reading this to do research and see if the illness you’re dealing with can be treated naturally to eradicate it.  Then ask questions.  I’m so excited to create a dialogue with people all over the world.  I have a long list of ideas to get started, but I would love to get to know all of you reading this.  What are you curious about?  What do you find confusing?  What are you interested in?  I truly look forward to hearing from you.     Til then,

Get Natural.  Get well.
Heather

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