Marks Daily Apple
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Mark's Daily Apple

27 Dec

The Buckler Brief

EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT: Milk Thistle

WHAT IT IS: Milk Thistle, or silybum marianum

Milk thistle is a hardy, prickly plant of the thistle family. It grows easily around the world. It is edible and its leaves are often eaten in a manner similar to artichokes. It can also be made into a potent beverage not unlike coffee. Used for more than 2,000 years, milk thistle was once thought to activate lactation (hence the name).

Milk thistle contains a substance, silymarin, which is a uniquely powerful antioxidant. It stores itself in the liver and can prevent and even reverse damage from toxins like alcohol and painkillers.

STUDIES SHOW: Milk thistle is one of the most thoroughly documented nutrients. Numerous studies support the claim that milk thistle can combat toxic damage in the liver from metals, poisons, alcohol, painkillers, pollution and other contaminants. Importantly, milk thistle has been shown to fight free radical damage – in fact, it appears that milk thistle may actually reverse some signs of oxidation in the liver.

Additionally, dozens of studies show that milk thistle can reduce cholesterol as well as inflammation in the liver. Milk thistle has the ability to fight lipid peroxidation, the process which creates cholesterol in the liver.

WHY WE LIKE IT: We like milk thistle because of its unique potential for benefitting the liver. Though known for being susceptible to damage from excess alcohol, the liver is also easily stressed by today’s diet and lifestyle trends (high in sugar, trans fats, free radicals and drugs). Maintaining liver health is crucial for cholesterol production and metabolism, the body’s inflammatory response, and overall health.

Milk thistle can help to reduce cholesterol and fight free radicals in the liver. This humble leaf also offers broad health benefits: helping to heal tissues, protect against further oxidation, and diminish inflammation.

Because we are inundated with free radicals – as Mark says, it’s a free radical minefield out there – it’s vital to supplement the liver with protective nutrients. And milk thistle is among the best sources for supporting liver health.


739px Milk thistle flower

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26 Dec

HRT: the Problem That Just Won’t Go Away

A doctor weighs in on the HRT-cancer connection. The controversy isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.

I recommend reading the whole interview if this is an area of interest for you. What caught my attention is the subtle pro-drug stance the interview appears to take, while simultaneously bringing out revealing facts like the following:

Q. Was it a surprise to learn that estrogen and progestins can cause breast cancer?

A. We’ve known there is a cause and effect with hormones and breast cancer since 1896.

On the plus side, the article effectively details the pathology of breast cancer, explaining the difference between estrogen and progesterine’s effects in lay terms. If you’ve found the issue confusing, give this article 10 minutes of your time. The article also fairly points out that the “entire epidemiology” of breast cancer shifted when HRT was introduced and again when it was found to be dangerous.

My concerns regarding current HRT therapies, however, remain:

1) The cancer-hormone connection has long been known.

2) The body was not designed to handle artificial hormone interference with the natural regulatory processes that come with aging. That’s not my opinion; that’s fact. Start tinkering with the body and all kinds of things can happen. Of course, I recommend other, natural therapies to combat aging-related issues (including menopause): exercise, sensible supplementation, and sound dietary choices. We’ll get into those in detail soon.

3) The entire tone of the interview is what I find so offensive about the medical industry: if one drug doesn’t work, hey, take another! Subtle though it is – again, the article does promote plenty of helpful information – it’s clear that mainstream medical practitioners are loathe to “call out” even the most pressing health scandals, evidently preferring to tread lightly lest they offend the pharmaceutical suits. Of course, five or ten years from now, everyone will be talking about the dangers of HRT without hesitation, but for now, it’s a politically-correct parade.

The icing on the cake: after discussing the various issues surrounding HRT, the interview brings up the issue of osteoporosis (since many women took HRT to address this health condition) and suggests alternative drugs as the solution. It’s par for the course for Big Pharma.

pills

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26 Dec

Take 2 Bites & We’ll See You in the Morning

Worker Bees’ Daily Bites

1. Ririan Rocks
We love how the posts over at Ririan make life so much easier and more productive. Check out the essential tips for good sleep – and we’ll add one to the list…

Spend 5 or 10 minutes before bed doing one of the following:

Journaling (write your thoughts, your to-do list, your worries, whatever!)

Prayer or meditation (concentrate on the positive – focus on appreciation)

– Light a candle, take 10 deep breaths, and decide to get a great night’s sleep. You’ll be amazed at how the decision to rack out will really work! (Work up to 20, 30 or more deep breaths before going to sleep.)

2. Allergic? Pour It On

We’ve been noticing a particular allergy hypothesis begining to take hold in the scientific community. Well, actually, Mark has been noticing and pointed it out. Scientists are finding that, in some cases, increased exposure to an allergen seems to be the best way to cure the allergy. Of course, this is not a “do it yourself” experiment; so far, studies have been strictly controlled in labs. The latest study could make a big difference for children’s food allergies. Check it out by jumpin’ on this clickativity.

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26 Dec

Backache? Quit Whinin’!

Here’s an interesting fact: complaining, thinking negative thoughts and just having a generally grumpy mindset is bad for your back. In fact, a new study says all kinds of aches and pains can be alleviated by an attitude shift. Being cheerful really does keep you healthy.
Clickativity

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26 Dec

Sweet! More Fun Ways Marketers Trick Us

Did you know?

Bakeries and confectioners’ shops often pipe fake aromas into the air because the scent of sugar is so emotionally powerful. (In fact, sugar is addictive.)

Supermarkets select that cheesy music for a reason: marketers have figured out which tunes reduce our blink rates, causing a “somnolent” state. In other words, Celine really will turn you into a food-famished zombie.

Food producers make about 3,900 calories for every man, woman, and child. That’s up from 3,300 in the 80s, with no end in sight. To handle this surplus food, food producers just make the portions bigger. (Maybe they don’t know about Africa?)

You can read more by checking out this clickativity right here.

Storeisle

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