sexyface.JPG (283762 bytes)   Pat O'Brien, CAYP, CCH, AADP, AHG                              realnaturalmedicine.com
   Board Certified Practitioner of Ayurvedic and Chinese Natural Medicine


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   FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

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         Q: SHOULD I TAKE A VITAMIN/MINERAL SUPPLEMENT AND WHAT DO YOU
              RECOMMEND?

A: It depends on your case. If you have chronic heartburn or an ulcer, then it's a good idea to avoid vitamin formulas with large doses of vitamin C since vitamin C is acidic and can worsen those medical problems. Plus, pay attention to vitamin formulas with herbs added to them. In some cases the added herbs can be aggravating your problem or contributing to it, such as cayenne pepper feeding an inflammatory arthritic problem. On the other hand, if you have acidic tendencies and
a disorder like osteoporosis, supplementing with a good amount of calcium, magnesium and vitamin D daily is a good idea.

 

Q: IS IT SAFE TO TAKE HERBS ON TOP OF MY PRESCRIPTION DRUGS?

A: It depends on what specifically you are taking. For example, blood thinning drugs such as celebrex, vioxx, and aspirin should not be taken with blood thinning herbs such as dandelion, echinacea, or goldenseal. Vitamin E and fish oils are blood thinning too.

 

Q: WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT GARLIC?  I READ SOMEWHERE THAT
      IT IS GOOD FOR YOU.  SHOULD I TAKE IT DAILY?

A: Again. It depends. If you have high blood pressure you should avoid it, as garlic
worsens hypertension due to its chemically heating properties. However, it is
great for breaking up and dissolving clots.

 

Q: WHAT SHOULD I EAT?  WHAT KIND OF DIET DO YOU RECOMMEND?

A: It depends on many variables: your genetics, your medical history, your current medical problems and their specific symptoms, etc.  It is just as complicated to give specific dietary recommendations for someone, as it is to give them suggestions on which natural supplements and herbs to try. This is reality! For example, dairy products and fruit juices are great for someone with dryness issues, but horrible for someone fighting a serious fluid retention problem (edema). Spices help dispel nausea, but will aggravate and worsen inflammatory pain.

 

Q: IS SUGAR BAD FOR ME? SHOULD I CUT SUGAR OUT OF MY DIET?

A: Not necessarily. Despite white sugar being processed, it is still a natural substance. Furthermore, in Ayurvedic medicine it buffers acidity in other foods and beverages with a ph of 7. This is actually a good thing if your body tends to be genetically more acidic. "Sweetened" fruit juices and fruits are a lot less sour/acidic which is beneficial to some people who cannot tolerate acids. Let's not forget that many medical disorders are actually caused from too much acidity and/or the consumption of sour foods and sour drinks- such as osteoporosis, excessive tooth cavities, acid reflex, ulcers, many GI disorders, migraines, and even genetic FH cholesterol issues (as sour/acid substances negatively impact the liver's function and LDL receptor ability in these people by increasing the main enzyme involved in faulty lipid metabolism). The new sour taste on the market is not so sweet in many negative ways.

Last, in Ayurveda, sugar is anti-inflammatory (the opposite of what you've been told). It actually "cools" the body internally and therefore helps treat and lower inflammation and its related medical disorders. Sugar actually helps to lower blood pressure.

 

Q: I HAVE  IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME. AM I'M LACTOSE
     INTOLERANT?

A: No, not necessarily. Many other foods and seasonings, natural supplements, western medications, and herbs can disrupt digestion causing GI distress and mimic the same symptoms of lactose intolerance. Usually several dietary factors play a role in causing distress, not just one food group. Secondly, genetically and biologically some people are born with lactose intolerance, they don't just develop it as they age. Very few caucasians are actually truly lactose intolerant. Don't buy into marketing hype without checking out the facts.

 

Q: WHY CAN'T I GET MY CHOLESTEROL DOWN ON A FAT FREE DIET?

A: 70-80% of the cholesterol drawn from a needle in your blood comes from the function of your liver and not dietary fat. Hence, this explains why your friend can eat a high fat diet and have low cholesterol and you may eat a low fat or even vegetarian diet and still have high lipid levels. Liver function is greatly influenced by genetics and acidic foods. Hence grape juice and orange juice, despite being cholesterol free, can significantly raise cholesterol levels if the juice is too sour/tart and the ph is too low, in people with this inherited sensitive liver. Sugar free fruit products are even more acidic as sugar buffers acidity. Its removal substantially drops ph in fruit juices and canned fruits, etc. Any fruit that is underipe or sour also effects this issue. Yogurt is horrible for the liver- as fermented substances are also considered "sour" in Ayurveda.

 

Q: ONCE MY PROBLEM IS GONE, SHOULD I KEEP TAKING HERBS?

A: Never!  Herbs are not like vitamins and supplements. They behave in the body completely differently. Their effects tend to accumulate in the system-making someone internally cold, hot, too dry, too damp, acidic, etc.  Herbs are best used only until the problem is gone and the body has been restored to balance. Once that balance has been achieved, you risk throwing your body off balance in the opposite direction if you continue taking and using the same products.

 

Q: CAN JUST HERBS REVERSE A MEDICAL PROBLEM BY THEMSELVES?

A: Not really. It's like paddling up a river. In Eastern medicine there are 2 main causes for most chronic diseases: one's genetics and his/her diet. If he/she does not make changes to his/her diet, then the problem is most likely to come back- as the root cause was not addressed. Plus, it is almost impossible to get great results if the body is still receiving substances that aggravate it, despite the herbs it's also being given. Herbs and diet changes together create a very powerful source for healing.
    

 

 

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