Herbal Safety: Herb or Pharmaceutical?

Red Yeast Rice

I still remember the conversation a few colleagues and I had with a nephrologist. He just had dialyzed a patient in acute renal failure (ARF) with a serum creatinine > 8 mg/dL (normal 0.6 – 1.2 mg/dL). Curious whether any of us could crack the case, he inquired: ‘What do you think caused this high serum creatinine in this young man?’ Continue reading “Herbal Safety: Herb or Pharmaceutical?”

Fire Cupping

Did you know that bruises which appear with cupping, are fundamentally different than bruises from trauma?

A bruise from trauma is very sensitive to the touch, while the bruise from cupping feels actually comfortable. Trauma causes the destruction of blood vessels and tissue. Cupping lifts the tissue, pulls stagnant fluid to the surface and allows blood and nutrients to perfuse the area. It is not comparable to a massage where tissue is compressed.

As it implies, fire is introduced into a cup to create the vacuum and heat up the glass. The warmth aids the softening of the tissue and works great for reaching deeper layers (muscle). This form of cupping is also well suited for chronic pain which responds to heat.

Fire Cupping

 

 

Ready to Quit Smoking?  

What are your Options?

Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)

NRTs nicotine is absorbed much slower as compared to nicotine from cigarettes. They do not fuel nicotine addiction with instant dopamine release. Currently 5 NRT dosage forms are available on the market. Nicotine inhaler and nasal sprays require a prescription, but anyone 18 years or older can purchase nicotine gum, transdermal patches and lozenges over the counter. Comparing all NRTs, none is superior. Continue reading “Ready to Quit Smoking?  “

Monk Fruit

Lou Han Guo aka Monk Fruit (Siraitia grosvenorii)

Monk Fruit or to be exact: the extracted mogrosides have been found 150-200 times sweeter that sucrose (table sugar). Its use as a sweetener is considered to be safe by the FDA (final ruling 8/2016 on GRAS notice), and the American Diabetes Association gives it two thumbs up for not raising blood sugar levels. Continue reading “Monk Fruit”