Dr.Karol, MD

The doctor with alternative solutions


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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..

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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.

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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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Radical Remedies: What is Detox?

From a medical point of view it is the neutralization and excretion of toxic substances from our bodies. Some of the most common sources of these toxic substances are heavy metals in food and water or industrial and/or combustion engine derived pollutants. We either inhale them, consume them in our food or drink, absorb them through our skin, or they are produced as by-products of our metabolism. They are either directly toxic to our cells or cause damage by stimulating the production of free radicals and inflammation. They not only cause cell damage but may also accelerate the aging process and contribute to the development of many unpleasant medical conditions.

The most important organ that detoxifies these substances is the liver, but the kidneys also play a very important role in concentrating these substances in the urine and excreting them out of the body. Other means of detox are by excretion through stool, bile and sweat.

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Radical Remedies: The Surprising Health Benefits of Alcohol, Especially Red Wine

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We have all heard it before: alcohol is bad for you!  Alcohol causes accidents, alcohol is a carcinogen, and alcohol causes moral and social degradation. All true at high doses over a prolonged period of time and on a regular basis.

At low doses (1 to 2 glasses of red wine each evening), alcohol has more health benefits than health-damaging effects. Red wine is the healthiest source of alcohol since it also contains Resveratrol, the antioxidative molecule that protects our arteries and thus our hearts from clogging up with cholesterol plaques. Red wine has also been used as an antiseptic, especially to prevent gastrointestinal infections from bacteria and parasites.

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Radical Remedies: Cancer Prophylaxis (Prevention)

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We all know that cancer is a serious matter. Even though we are probably close to discovering a total cure, we are not there yet.

Most cancers form because of some insults to our DNA that cause mutations. These mutations cause our cells to lose the capacity to replicate in a controlled manner. The consequence is uncontrolled cellular division and therefore uncontrolled tissue growth. Without proper supplementation, nutritional support and medical care, the system usually shuts down.

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Organic Vs. Non-Organic Juicing

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In the context of cancer prevention and also for the general health, there are few things as good as juicing or blending green leafy vegetables.

Parsley, kale, and spinach are the best. Other nutrient and antioxidant packed veggies and fruits are celery, carrots, cabbage, cilantro and Granny Smith apples. When juicing parsley and kale you don’t get much juice, but the juice that you do get is so concentrated that it forms jelly like globules that are very deep green in color. Such juices are packed with antioxidants, detoxifying compounds, and compounds that help protect DNA and cells as a whole from any damage that may result in the initiation of cancer formation.

Blending such vegetables with, for example, a frozen berry mix or frozen organic blue berries, is another great way to form a cocktail with anti-cancer properties. The added benefit of blending is that you still keep the fibre which benefits the inner lining of the gastrointestinal tract as well as providing a softer consistency to stool. However, it will not concentrate all the great nutrients as well as juicing…..Read more….


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Radical Remedies: Natural Pain Management

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Pain management. It’s a very hot topic. The reason for this is straight forward. It is safe to say that every living person in this world has experienced pain at one time or another. It is also the predominant feature of most diseases, acute and chronic alike.

Pain is commonly elicited in regions of the body where there is inflammation. If the inflammation lasts a long time, it causes damage to the organ that is inflamed. This may lead to chronic, debilitating and painful illness.

The problem with common pain medications is that they rely heavily on blocking the perception of pain but not the underlying cause. Another problem with these medications is that most of them have serious side effects and can also be highly addictive as they fall in the category of narcotics.

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Detox With Cabbage

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It’s not a joke. Perhaps one of the most overlooked and ignored vegetables is cabbage. We only use it as sauerkraut, maybe a couple of time a year, or perhaps in some Eastern European dishes like cabbage rolls, again probably not too often.  But the truth is that this vegetable and especially its raw juice is one of the most potent detoxifying and cancer inhibiting cocktails found in nature.

We are nearing the end of March (thank God that spring is around the corner and you can feel it in the air) and thus the end of the detox/cleanse month theme. Therefore I could not resist including cabbage in my last blog of this theme.

First of all cabbage juice is packed with nutrients. It has a very high level of manganese, vitamin B6, folate, thiamin, vitamin A, potassium, tryptophan, magnesium, riboflavin, and calcium….Read more…..