Dr.Karol, MD

The doctor with alternative solutions


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Arthritis and Natural Solutions

arthritis

 

 

My inspiration for today’s blog topic was something I experienced while running in this morning before work. It’s something that many of us are familiar with this time of year:  joint pain. Thankfully it’s probably nothing serious and it quickly went away with a little “lubrication” stimulated by the exercise. However, I realized that this is something that probably a lot of us are experience right now due to the ever changing weather conditions and the damp fall air. Why this happens is not entirely clear, and in many cases it is just a harmless and temporary occurrence while we adapt to the colder weather.

However, in many cases joint pain can be attributed to arthritis and this is a medical condition that needs more attention. Arthritic conditions actually encompass a whole separate specialty in medicine. There are four main types of arthritis. The most common one is Osteoarthritis (due to damage to the joint either by excessive usage, infection, or age). The other types are Autoimmune Arthritis (where the immune system makes a mistake and recognizes joint tissue as something foreign and therefore mounts an attack on the joint tissue), Septic Arthritis (which is due to an infection of the joint), and Gout (which is due to the deposition of Uric Acid and which in many cases can be prevented by a diet low in red meat and alcohol). Although they are all different, there are two things that are common to all of these types of arthritic conditions and these are inflammation and damage to joint tissue…Read more….


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Coffee: How much is too much? Is it even healthy?

The debate over health benefits of drinking coffee is seemingly never ending. As with most things in life, when it comes to how much is too much coffee there are a variety of factors to consider. Everybody metabolizes coffee and caffeine in different ways and at different rates. Thus, what is too much for one person may be just fine for another. Another factor to consider is the state of mind and body at any given time: Are you an anxiety-prone individual? If so, 5 cups of coffee in one day may be too much.  Are you super sleepy because of rainy weather? Then 3 cups may be just fine. Are you dehydrated and exhausted from a long trip? In that case, even one cup may be very unhealthy..

latte art

 

 

Coffee comes with both desirable and undesirable affects. The good is that it contains flavonoids that are also found in fruits and vegetables. These are anti-oxidants that protect our body from damage caused by pollutants and bad diet. However, coffee is not the richest source of flavonoids to say the least. It’s a similar story with red wine. Yes it contains resveratrol that protects the heart but to get that effect you must drink 5 to 10 glasses of wine a day and by doing so you are causing way more damage due to alcohol. The actual caffeine content also plays a major role. When in low amounts it increases wakefulness, mental acuity, better mood etc. But in higher amounts it causes lack of long term memory retention, anxiety, and increased blood pressure. Caffeine is also a diuretic. This can also be good or bad. In general it’s not a good thing because it depletes your body of fluid (including electrolytes). But on the other hand if you have excessive fluid retention in your body (such as after a long exhausting trip (usually causing retention in your legs due to compromised kidney function) then it may actually relieve the work load on the heart due to the excessive fluid.

coffee at the office

Another thing about coffee is that it irritates the lining of the stomach. This may cause cramps, acidity, and a general unpleasant feeling in the stomach. There is great variation among individuals with respect to this phenomenon. Some people don’t suffer this at all, while others have to stay away from caffeine entirely.

This brings us back to the original question: How many cups is too many? Like mentioned before it all depends on the individual and the state of body and mind she or he is in at the moment. However, generally speaking, 4 cups each day or more is more than enough before we develop long term rise in blood pressure, which is an extremely undesirable effect. Increased blood pressure can cause damage to all organs of the body and most notoriously the heart, the kidneys and the brain.

fresh coffee groundsFinally, always remember fresh ground, organic coffee is much healthier than instant. Instant coffee is typically exposed to various chemicals to make it an “instant” option (however, there are healthy instant coffee alternatives. It’s also typically much more irritating to the stomach. The best options are fresh, high-quality whole beans, or freshly ground beans coming from the purest sources.

 

See you next time.

 

Dr. Karol

 


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Baking Soda and Kidney Health

 

Baking Soda for kidney health and longevity: This is definitely a catchy one. But if you think about it from a scientific point of view it totally makes sense. The fact is our bodies are constantly neutralizing acid. This is absolutely essential as all the cells of our body need to be in a slightly basic environment in order to function properly. Without this, our cells age quicker and die quicker and this can predispose to many diseases.

The main substance responsible for neutralizing acid is bicarbonate and the primary organs responsible for its production are the kidneys. It is estimated that about half a pound of bicarbonate is produced by the kidneys, per day, to neutralize all excessive acid. Unfortunately this system can be overwhelmed and the primary culprits are diabetes, kidney disease, high protein diet and acidic drinks like pop.

High protein intake is healthy for our muscles and to keep our weight down but because it produces excessive acid this acid must be neutralized by a high intake of green leafy vegetables or by sodium bicarbonate. When these acids pass thought the kidney they are attached to bicarbonate to form a neutral salt which can easily pass in the urine without damaging the kidneys. If there is insufficient bicarbonate these acids are in their toxic form and when passing thought the kidneys they cause excessive damage. This can cause further deterioration of kidney function and thus even a lesser capacity to form bicarbonate.

This is yet another example of a perpetuating deterioration of an organ system. The consequence is not only further kidney damage but also over all increased acidity all over the body with consequent deterioration of all organ systems.

Taking bicarbonate daily in a form of baking soda is not only good for helping the kidneys with its role as the acid neutralizer, but also in disease states where the kidney are no longer capable of performing this role on their own.

For more sage advice from Dr. Karol and for natural health product recommendations, visit vitarock.com.


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My Recipe for a Nutritious and Healthy Breakfast

This picture you see is the usual breakfast that I have about 30 minutes after I wake up. It is what I usually eat early in the morning to start the day, but sometimes I replace it with other recipes to keep it interesting and still healthy (I will add these in my future recipes).

My breakfast is preceded by one freshly squeezed pink grapefruit mixed with one freshly squeezed lemon and some water to fill the glass. The grapefruit stimulates liver enzymes for liver regeneration and detox, and it stimulates lipolysis (the breakdown of fat in my body into single units to be utilized for energy). The lemon juice alkalinizes my body (i.e. prevents acidosis) and provides vitamin C as an anti-oxidant. I usually drink the juice right when I wake up and then do my 20 minute morning work out. After this I cook my breakfast which is the main topic of today’s recipe.

So what you see at the top of the picture is one small fresh cucumber sliced in half, three pieces of fresh red pepper and a whole bunch of miniature red and yellow tomatoes.

To the left I add one piece of Wasa multigrain dry flat bread with a thin layer of cream cheese and two slices of smoked Norwegian salmon. The multigrain bread provides me with some complex carbs for energy and the salmon with Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. The Omega fatty acids protect arteries (especially in the heart and brain) and act as potent anti-inflammatory agents. They also improve brain function in a general sense. I also add the salmon because it is one of my favorite treats.

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Radical Remedy: MDMA for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

What does Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD conjure up for you? War veterans back from their battles abroad? Perhaps. But you don’t have to fight overseas to experience trauma. There are natural disasters, loss of loved ones, and many other experiences that can leave a permanent mark of emotional distress. PTSD sufferers often relive the trauma, experience anxiety, drug abuse and insomnia. Unfortunately, current medications are not very effective in treating this condition.

But a recent, pretty startling discovery has provided PTSD sufferers with some hope: MDMA, or the drug known on the street as ecstasy, was found to be very effective in treating PTSD for the long term. The first study showed such strong improvements in the patient’s well being that the effect was over 3 times stronger than that required to achieve statistical significance. The second study repeated the treatment and followed up with the patients for a period of two years. Even after two years, over 80% of the patients still showed significant improvement.

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Radical Remedy: The Wonder of Amber

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Baltic Amber use date back thousands of years. The Eastern Europeans used it as a tincture before of modern antibiotics came along. It was employed to increase immunity and treat pain like teething, stomach upsets, to boost energy in the elderly, and to enhance men’s libido.

How does it work?

Baltic amber is high in succinic acid. This substance is crucial to the Citric Acid Cycle, which generates energy in our cells. This acid is also vital to the cells of our immune system. It boosts the division rate of those cells and helps them eradicate pathogens. This is how amber imitates an antibiotic and helps increase vitality.

What can amber help ease?

Succinic acid is also a powerful anti-inflammatory agent and pain reliever. It prevents oxidative damage to cells in conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, general back pain and menstrual pain.

But that’s not all. Amber necklaces and amber smoke were used in early times to ward off bad spirits. Seem implausible? Amber may actually reverse the effects of electromagnetic waves from electronics and from the sun. This 50-million –year-old precious gem has more than a few tricks up its sleeve.


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Radical Remedies: Royal Jelly

Bee Royal Jelly

Did you know that bees create Royal Jelly?

When worker bees are raising a new queen bee, they feed a few chosen larvae copious amounts of Royal Jelly, a honeybee secretion that stimulates morphological changes in the larvae to transform them into queens. The queen is much larger than the workers, it has a longer life span and unlike to the worker bees, it has ovaries that can produce eggs.

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