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Teas With Red Dates

Packed with vitamins and minerals, amino acids and flavonols, red Chinese dates – help maintain a steady flow of blood through the body, and encourage the healthy development of bones, muscles, skin, hair, enzymes, hormones, and neurotransmitters. Ongoing studies continue to recommend red dates as a fruit with the potential to treat and even prevent allergies and several types of cancers.

Seventy to 80 times higher in Vitamin C than grapes and apples, red dates also abound with Vitamin A, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron and magnesium. This vitamin-packed punch makes red dates great for people who are recovering from serious diseases. Making it even better for the sickly, red dates are said to stimulate the production of white blood cells, which improves immunity, and decrease the levels of cholesterol in your bloodstream, which helps protect the liver. Like acai berries and other antioxidant foods, they’re even believed to suppress cancer cells. Red dates can also guard against more common ailments. Because of their high levels of Vitamin C, dates convert excessive cholesterol into bile acid, which helps prevent gallstones.

There are also different kinds of dates – the difference is in the colour. da zao 大棗 are black in color and hong zao 紅棗 are smaller and red in color. Both are from the same kind of fruit. When the fruit are blanched slightly in boiling water, and dried under the sun, they are called hong zao 紅棗. When the fruit are blanched in boiling water and baked until the skin becomes black and shiny, they are called da zao. (Black)

Red Dates - Goodherbs.sg

An easy recipe to make tea with red dates is as follows:
(Adapted from www.fitnesslatte.com)

Ingredients:

3-4 dried dates
1 teaspoon honey
1 cup of water

Instructions:

1. Rinse the dates. Boil 1 cup of water. When the water is boiled, add the dates and water into a cup. Let it rest for 3-4 minutes.

2. Add honey and stir well.

3. Enjoy!

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Right Brain May Help Predict Recovery Of Language In Stroke

Left and Right Brain Infographic

Left vs right brain is a debate that’s talked about frequently. Apparently, who you are is influenced by which part of the brain is more dominant in your body. Different subjects require different parts of your brain – for example, subjects like Mathematics would require more of your left brain, while subjects like creative writing would use your right brain more often.

STROKE
When you have an ischemic stroke, the oxygen-rich blood supply to part of your brain is reduced. With a hemorrhagic stroke, there isbleeding in the brain.

After about 4 minutes without blood and oxygen, brain cells become damaged and may die. The body tries to restore blood and oxygen to the cells by enlarging other blood vessels (arteries) near the area.

If blood supply isn’t restored, permanent damage usually occurs. The body parts controlled by those damaged cells cannot function.

In TCM however, there are four agents of stroke – Wind, Fire, Phlegm and Stasis. The internal organs most likely to be weakened by these factors are the kidney and spleen, causing deficiencies of Chi, Blood, and Yin. Deficiencies of Chi, Blood, or Yin permit the body to be overwhelmed by the pathological factors of Wind, Phlegm, Fire, and Stasis, resulting in such stroke-related patterns as Liver Yang Rising, Stasis of Chi or Blood, Phlegm combining with Fire, Liver Wind, or Wind in the Meridians.

Wind In TCM

Wind Direction

Name of Wind

Internally Affects

Externally Affects

Its Qi Causes

South

great feathery wind

heart

channels

heat

Southwest

scheming wind

spleen

muscles

weakness

West

hard wind

lungs

skin

dryness

Northwest

breaking wind

small intestine

arm major yang channel

blockage in channel

North

great hard wind

kidneys

bones, shoulder, back muscles

coldness

Northeast

unfortunate wind

large intestine

sides of ribs, armpits, lower bones, limb joints

[not stated in text]

East

children’s wind

liver

thick muscles

dampness

Southeast

feathery wind

stomach

muscles, flesh

body weight

Regardless of the cause, a fascinating discovery has been made, that the structure of the right brain can predict the recovery of language in stroke.

Results showed that patients with aphasia (the impaired ability to understand speech) and better results in speech-fluency tests were more likely to have higher structural integrity than the control group in three areas of the brain.

The three areas were the right middle temporal gyrus, the right inferior frontal and the right precentral gyrus. The gyri (Or gyrus) are the “bumps” that can be seen on the surface of the brain. The folding created by the sulci and gyri increases the amount of cerebral cortex that can fit in the skull.

The correlation scores between the amount of injury to the left hemisphere and speech-fluency scores improved when the right hemisphere information was added to the analysis.

Thus, this study reveals that a well-wired right brain actively supports speech recovery.

To end off, learn about the nutritional values of foods normally consumed in order to pinpoint which vitamins or minerals might be missing. To be healthy and active, the brain also needs exercises that help stimulate the right hemisphere of the brain and activate deeper thought processes. Exercises like yoga and knitting can help stimulate the right brain as well.

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Teatoxes – What About It?

Teatox sounds a lot like detox, something the world has been doing for a long while and something that which its benefits and disadvantages have also been discussed for equally long.

If you do a quick Google search, you will see a hundred posts on detoxing, its benefits and how to get started.

Here’s one for example, to help you tell the difference between a juice and a blended smoothie, all to aid in your ~detoxing~ journey.

Teatoxes Juice And Smoothies

It’s hard to properly sing the benefits of detoxing. Our organs – the liver and kidney do their job of “detoxing” the body well enough. One of the reasons you go to the toilet is to get rid of toxins, did you know? (Yes, you did!)

There’s a reason we fall for the marketing of detoxification – we seem hardwired to believe we need it, perhaps related to our susceptibility to ideas of sympathetic magic. Purification rituals date back to the earliest reaches of recorded history. The idea that we’re somehow poisoning ourselves and we need to atone for our sins seems to be a part of human nature, which may explain why it’s still a part of most of the world’s religions.

And now,

If you can’t stomach the green juices in most cleanses, there’s a new way to detox: teatox. These plans take tea—one of the world’s most popular beverages—and spruce it up with a variety of ingredients, promising results such as weight loss, detoxification, and increased energy, just as other detoxes claim.

And while there’s some evidence that drinking flavonoid-rich tea protects your heart, skin, brain, and bones; helps you manage stress and maintain weight; and fends off cancer and type 2 diabetes, there’s no published research to show teatoxes are safe or effective for weight loss or anything else. But since they are considered dietary supplements rather than foods, the companies behind them don’t need to prove any of the claims listed on the labels.

A teatox is simple.  Dieters simply drink several cups of herbal tea during the day, in addition to eating food. The idea is that drinking warm tea will help keep you full between meals and keep snacking at bay.

But does it work?

“Detoxing with tea may well produce initial, albeit temporary weight loss,” said Tanya Zuckerbrot, a registered dietitian and founder of the F-Factor Diet, her clinical practice in New York City that provides nutritional counseling. “Similar to any liquid diet, a tea detox or teatox works by restricting calories so that you consume fewer calories than you burn in a day.”

Zuckerbrot also advised that weight reduction is most likely due to loss of water, not fat; hence the lost weight may be regained once the tea detox ends. Supplementing a healthy diet that’s high in fiber and lean proteins with teas (such as green tea, black tea) can support our natural detoxifying processes, but it’s no magic bullet.

There are many teatoxes out there. We have Skinnymint, Naked Me Tea, and many others.

But many of these teatoxes contain laxatives that will be harmful to your body if taken for more than 2 weeks.

The natural remedies in place of teatoxes are aplenty –

Food that are friendly to your intestines:

  • Spinach
  • Banana
  • Apple
  • Apricot
  • Almond
  • Prune
  • Pear
  • Peach
  • Honey
  • Walnut
  • Pine Nut
  • Soy Products
  • Beet
  • Okra
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrot

    And some Chinese herbs that are friendly to your digestive tract……………

    • Marshmallow Root
    • Licorice Root
    • Psyllium Seed
    • Fenugreek Seed
    • Flax Seed
    • Comfrey Root
    • Hops
    • Iceland Moss
    • Oats
    • Irish Moss
    • Quince Seed
    • Slippery Elm

So teatoxes aren’t really needed….. right?

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Guide To Natural Health For The Whole Body

Learn how to improve how you feel with natural health remedies. Jump right in, we’ve got everything you ought to know.

Eyes, Brain And Head Natural Health

Brain, head, eyes

Brain: If you’re feeling more than just the Monday blues (But Tuesday blues, Wednesday blues and all blues all day), you’d be pleased to find that acupuncture, Chinese herbs, Tai Chi, and yoga are known depression-fighters; For fatigue with depression, try acetyl-L-carnitine (an amino acid derivative). Take 500 milligrams two or three times a day.

Head: Biofeedback, a relaxation technique that sends brain-wave info to the user via headphones and fingertip electrodes, can prevent migraines. Magnesium supplements or herbs such as butterbur or feverfew may also help headache sufferers.

Eyes: Keep your vision sharp with bilberries, which are packed with antioxidants—even more than their blueberry cousins. Billberries sound a little bit like what we’d read in an Enid Blyton book, but it’s time to take them more seriously now.

Sinuses, jaw, throat
Natural Health Tips For Sinuses, Jaw, Throat

Sinuses: Aromatherapy could help if you are prone to sinus infections. Think of all the oils that put you in a relaxed state, more specifically, oils from dill, bishop’s weed and cumin work as well, if not, better than antibiotics against 8 types of common bacterial infections. Plus a herbal combination called Kan Jang can make sinus infections and the common cold more tolerable and reduce recovery time! We can see you say “Wow!”

Jaw: Biofeedback paired with cognitive-behavioral-skills training (a mind-body type of therapy), can significantly reduce pain from temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.

Throat: Fight germs and kill bacteria with a tea tree–oil gargle (11⁄2 tablespoons of pure tea tree oil to 1 cup of water). Swish and spit. (Don’t swallow.)

Breasts, tummy

Breasts: Flaxseed, which contains omega-3 fatty acids, reduces inflammation and tumor growth. Start with 1 tablespoon of ground organic golden flaxseed daily for a week, and work up to 4 tablespoons; drink lots of water to avoid constipation. Flaxseeds contain omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, zinc, iron, vitamin E, and calcium, among other vitamins and minerals, and are low in saturated fat. They have a low smoke point, so they can’t really be used in cooking, but you can use them in baking, in cereals  and in smoothies.

Tummy: Excuse you! Get rid of your burping and bloating with digestive-enzyme supplements that help your body process sugars, starches, proteins, and fats; they’re available in capsule form.

Mint (drink it in tea; leaves)  long been considered a tummy soother, too. And enteric-coated peppermint-oil capsules (the enteric protects your tummy lining—never ingest essential oils in liquid form) may ease irritable bowel syndrome.

Natural Health Burping

Pelvis, urinary tract, colon

Pelvis: That time of the month is here and your pesky cramps are making their timely visit. A hot water bottle and your favourite chocolate can help, but to relieve cramps naturally, try taking black cohosh, magnesium supplements, omega-3 fatty acids, or vitamins C, B, and B6—all of which are thought to ease pain; calendula oil (made from marigolds) applied topically may help, too. Castor oil packs placed on the abdomen may also decrease pain, reduce inflammation, and increase relaxation.

Urinary tract: Natural health tip! And it’s not an old wives’ tale: Cranberries, in juice or capsules, can keep bacteria from sticking to the bladder wall—and this can help fight urinary tract infections. The herb uva ursi (bearberry) might provide some relief, too; it contains a natural anti­biotic that soothes irritation and reduces inflammation caused by bladder infections.

Colon: Research in natural health shows that hypnotherapy improves irritable bowel syndrome in most patients who try it. And probiotics (good, helpful bacteria) specifically Lactobacillus GG or Bacillus coagulans (we aren’t laughing if you can’t pronounce it) can help maintain healthy gastrointestinal flora and restore balance after a bout of traveler’s diarrhea. In two words – More Probiotics!

Back, butt

Back: Hours and hours of sitting and straining has put its toll on your back. Magnet therapy for low back pain has been recommended but it is controversial. For proven results, try acupuncture—relieving chronic low-back pain is one of the things it does best, research shows. In fact, recent trials in Germany showed it to be almost twice as effective for chronic low-back pain as conventional therapy. Meditation reduces pain, too.

Check your posture – ideally, we should be sitting upright with two feet flat on the floor.

Butt: Heat therapy reduces muscle spasms and increases blood flow. Moist heat—heat packs, a microwaved damp towel, or soaking in a hot tub—penetrates deeper than dry heat. But be warned: Heat increases swelling, so don’t use heat packs after an injury, and of course, check the temperature, don’t burn yourself!

Nicki Minaj And Natural Health
Maybe Nicki Minaj’s famous tush uses one or two heat packs too.

Skin, hands, bones

Skin: One way to prevent or lessen wrinkles in the name of natural health is to build collagen, which becomes thinner as a woman’s hormone levels fall. Try natural progesterone cream (rubbed into the thin skin behind your knees or on your chest), foods rich in phytoestrogens (soy), and antioxidant supplements (vitamins C and E; glutathione; and pine bark or grape seed extracts).

Bones: Vitamin D has emerged as a potent way to strengthen bones, as research has shown that calcium is virtually useless without enough of it. For those who don’t get much sun (which produces D), try a daily supplement with 800 to 1,000 IU of vitamin D.

Hands: Lifting weights and doing breathing exercises may help warm up cold hands and feet. Your hands can spread germs to your skin, so make sure you wash your hands regularly.

You know better now how to utilise natural health to you body’s advantages!

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You Might Have Hair Problems Natural Remedies Can Fix

It can be long or short, luscious or frizzy, tough or manageable, smooth or shiny. Hair comes in different colours, textures, styles, colours and shades. We all want a mane we can be proud of, a mane that will attract praises, a mane that isn’t too difficult to take care of.

In our quest for that, we might have popped into one too many salons, dyed one too many colours, undergone one too many chemical treatments.

Hair Problem Supplements Can Fix - Ariana Grande

That colour and that volume, Ariana.

Sadly, subjecting our hair to all those treatments could have given rise to some hair problems you might not have wanted to begin with. Identifying your hair type can help in deciding which hair problems natural remedies can fix.

1. Normal hair
Normal hair can be managed easily and has an adequate level of moisture, with no excess oil.

2. Dry hair
This is the result of insufficient production of oil. The frustration of a dry scalp and hair tips that break easily can be managed by frequent conditioning and staying away from harsh shampoos.

3. Oily hair
Here, the scalp secretes more oil than is required and this results in (you guessed it!) oily hair. Oily hair attracts dirt more easily and  people with oily hair are more prone to having dandruff as well. You could add lemon to the water you use to wash your hair to help with the oily scalp, and stay away from harsh shampoos as well. Leave the lemon juice on the hair for 45-60 minutes and then wash the hair using clean water only. You don’t need to shampoo. Allow your hair to dry before combing them. This will effectively remove any traces of lemon on the hair. Do this treatment every day if possible or every alternate day. Regular application of lemon juice on the hair will curb the excessive secretion of oil from the hair. The massage will open the clogged hair follicles which will reduce hair fall and allow hair to grow. Lemon is also an effective remedy for dandruff.

Alternatively, tomato juice can help. Apply the tomato juice paste on the hair as well as the scalp. Wear a shower cap and leave for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes wash off the tomato juice on the scalp and hair using cold water. Massage the scalp as you remove tomato juice. This provides good stimulation to hair follicles.

 

4. Combination Hair
The combination of greasy roots and dry tips each require pretty specialist treatment, and finding a product that effectively manages to deal with both is a bit of a nightmare. Many people with combination hair end up alternating shampoos — using a clarifying one to get rid of excess oil and a moisturising one for dry brittle ends. However, not only is this not cost effective in the long run, it may worsen the condition of your hair.

Healthy hair isn’t so far away, actually.

  1. Beautiful hair starts on the inside. A diet rich in essential fatty acids (fish/flaxseed oils), proteins (lecithin, wheat germ oil), and minerals and trace elements (like silica and zinc) that contain the basic building blocks of hair will produce significant results.
    Good Food For Hair Problems Natural Remedies Can Fix

2. Acupuncture can assist in hair loss in a couple of ways:

  • By tonifying the kidneys with specific acupuncture points on the body
  • Through tapping your scalp with a 7-star or plum blossom needle (that consists of 1 mm needles arranged in a star shape at the end of a paddle) that stimulates blood flow to your scalp.

3. Herbal medicine can also accelerate hair growth. Rehmannia root, fo-ti root, dong-quai root are common herbs used in decoctions to tonify kidney yin and nourish blood.  So yes, these hair problems natural remedies can fix!

Fo-Ti Root
Fo-Ti root is rarely used in recipes, and for a very good reason. In large quantities, the plant can be quite harmful. There are some concerns about liver toxicity in both adults and children. So no, you do not want to eat Fo-Ti root. Alternatively, you can purchase Fo-Ti root extract tea, which is a tasty and enjoyable way to get some of the benefits of this plant. But a supplement containing concentrated Fo-Ti root extract is a more cost-effective way to do it. It is important to make sure that you do not exceed a reasonably low dosage. Researchers are still working on establishing the best dosage of Fo-Ti root, so aim to play it safe here. You only need a little bit, and a little bit goes a long way.
Fo Ti Root For Hair Problems Natural Remedies Can Fix

Dong-Quai Root
Traditionally used to stop hair loss and regrow hair, dong quai phytosterols can reduce the formation of the androgen DHT. DHT, a derivative of the male hormone testosterone, is the enemy of hairfollicles on your head. Simply put, under certain conditions DHT wants those follicles dead.

Dong Quai For Hair Problems Natural Remedies Can Fix
Rehmannia root
In  Chinese medicine, hair is thought to be nourished by the blood, which is influenced by the liver and kidneys. Chinese medicines for the hair are intended to help and nourish these organs and promote new hair growth; they include such herbs as polygonum (Polygonum multiflorum), lycium fruit (Lycium barbarum), Chinese foxglove root (Rehmannia glutinosa).

Hair problems natural remedies can fix are plenty, so don’t worry!

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5 Questions To Ask About Health Supplements

Health Supplements
In today’s world, you might be eating your standard recommended servings of whole bread, vegetables, fruits and meats, but still you could be lacking in nutrients. (Calorie dense food might not be nutrient dense!) So you are considering health supplements.

You could lack nutrients due to a few reasons:
Current commercial agriculture techniques leave the soil deficient in important minerals, causing the food grown in this soil to share the same mineral deficiencies.

Erratic eating habits, insufficient chewing of food, eating on the run, and stress contribute to poor digestion, making it difficult for our bodies to extract all the nutrients it needs from We all have genetic weaknesses, including higher needs of some nutrients, higher rates of depletion for certain nutrients, and an increased likelihood of genetic expression of some illnesses if vitamin or mineral deficiencies are present.

So it’s natural to want to consider the use of health supplements.

But don’t just jump in and buy the first supplement you see. Consider these questions first.

1. Does the company have a research department?
Research For Health Supplement

The answer you’re looking for is “yes.” You want to buy from a company that conducts thorough in-house research on its products and makes that research available to consumers.

2. In a mineral product, are the minerals chelated?
You want chelated minerals whenever you can get them. Chelated minerals are minerals that have been combined chemically with amino acids to form “complexes.” You will see products labeled as chelated boron, chelated calcium, chelated chromium, etc.

3. Will taking this dietary supplement interfere with any prescription medicine I am on?
It could, so be sure you check with your physician before you purchase and pop any supplements. Additionally, before starting a new medicine, inform your physician about existing supplements that you are on. Supplements can interfere with the proper metabolisation of medicine, and vice versa. Ask a medical professional the correct dosage for your current health conditions. It is highly recommended that you check with a certified medical practitioner or healthcare professional on the appropriate dosage.

4. How can I compare the same health supplements from different brands?

The prudency of the company, the quality of its raw material and the standard of manufacturing all play an important part in the quality of a supplement. This reflects how the company checks and tests the ingredients to ensure it complies with the list of agreed quality criteria — which is set by both the raw material manufacturer and the product manufacturer during the manufacturing process.

Check if the company provides good nutritional advice and after sales service. The health supplements companies should also provide for face to face support through certified Naturopaths and healthcare practitioners.

5. Are they customised for men? For women? For specific age groups?
Every person has different nutritional requirements. What your body needs for optimal health depends on your age, gender, diet, and any health conditions you may have.

As a result, a general multivitamin is not always the best option. Instead, you should consider meeting your body’s specific nutritional needs with customized vitamin supplements.

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TCM Tips To Help You Get Pregnant

Chinese New Year is coming up soon and we will welcome the year of the Monkey! Many Chinese try to give birth in a year of the Monkey because it is believed that babies born in the year of the Monkey are perceived as clever.

The Chinese character “猴” (hóu /hoh/ ‘monkey’) is pronounced the same as “侯” (‘high official’), and the association dates back hundreds of years into feudal times.

The imagery of the monkey as nobility often appears in ancient paintings:

  • A monkey hanging a seal on a maple tree symbolizes getting promoted to a high position with an official seal.
  • A monkey riding a horse symbolizes getting promoted quickly.
  • A monkey riding on the back of another monkey symbolizes maintaining a high official standing from one generation to another.

If you are planning to get pregnant in this year, these Traditional Chinese Medicine tips could prove helpful.

1. Increase blood flow

Increasing blood flow to your reproductive organs is key in TCM as experts say a stressful life actually pulls blood flow away from the reproductive organs and makes it harder to get pregnant. Get up from your seats, exercise, do some yoga and try some acupuncture, maybe.

Acupuncture - A TCM tip to help you get pregnant

2. Nothing damp
According to TCM, “dampness” can build up in our body and lead to cysts and fibroids, making it hard to get pregnant. Therefore, damp foods like butter, cheese, milk, yogurt, ice cream, greasy foods and alcohol should be eliminated from a diet if you are trying to conceive. Wet clothing and extremely humid environments should also be avoided. So maybe no late night drinks or weekend binging on Ben and Jerry’s for a while.

3. Eat right to enhance the “yin” and “yang”
In a woman’s cycle, Yin and Yang energies rise and fall throughout. With fertility, the Yin must be sufficient to nourish the uterus and ovaries in the first half of the cycle. However Yin cannot be activated unless there is sufficient Yang energy. When the Yang is in balance with Yin, then the Yin energy is able to fertilize and nourish the egg.

In the second half of the cycle, Yang energy must heat the blood in the uterus to provide a warm and healthy environment for the embryo.

TCM believes that certain food help nourish your bodies during the different phases of your menstrual cycle.

Foods that nourish Yin include: fruits such as raspberries, pineapples and grapes; vegetables such as asparagus and beans; adequate proteins, especially tofu and fish; and organ meats such as kidneys, brains and hearts. Avoid spicy, pungent foods.

Foods that nourish Yang include warming foods: ginger; ginger tea; beans; grains; and vegetables such as mustard greens, winter squash, cabbage and kale.

Foods that nourish blood include: fruits such as blackberries, raspberries and grapes; organic meats and poultry; soup stock made from the bones of the meat and poultry; and vegetables such as turnips, spinach and dark, leafy greens.

Here’s wishing you a prosperous Monkey year filled with the laughter of your own Monkey kid! :)