‘Malunggay’ capsules address diabetes;

‘Malunggay’ capsules address diabetes;

STUDY CONFIRMS THAT THIS LOCAL WONDER PLANT CAN LOWER BLOOD SUGAR 

LEVELS AND RISKS OF STROKE AND HEART ATTACK



By: Anne A. Jambora

@inquirerdotnet

Philippine Daily Inquirer

04:30 AM July 14th, 2015



A recent study has confirmed that diabetic patients may benefit from regular intake of 

capsules containing Moringa oleifera (malunggay) leaves. The study says that malunggay 

not only reduces blood sugar levels, but also lowers the risks of stroke and heart attack.


High blood sugar reading is just the tip of the “metabolic syndrome” iceberg associated with 

diabetes.


Less attention has been given to the diabetic’s chronic inflammatory state. That’s why even 

with controlled sugar, many diabetic patients suffer the high risks of stroke and heart attack.

 

Almost every modern disease is caused or affected by inflammation. It is the normal response 

of the immune system to infection and trauma. In diabetic patients, this defense system 

becomes impaired and, if left untreated, can compromise the integrity of the blood vessels, 

dramatically increasing the risks of stroke and heart attack.


12-week study


In the first cohort study of M. oleifera on humans performed by Dr. Rainier Nery Mozo, with 

Dr. Imelda Caole-Ang as adviser, the leaves of this wispy tree were studied specifically for 

their properties affecting the hs-CRP (high specific C-reactive protein), a strong predictor of 

cardiovascular risks and death produced by the liver when there is inflammation, and 

hemoglobin A1c, the standard test that determines the past three months’ blood sugar 

control in people with diabetes.


The 12-week study, conducted November last year and peer-reviewed by the Philippine 

Internal Medicine Journal, supervised 52 selected subjects, all diagnosed with diabetes 

mellitus Type I or II. Patients with existing conditions related to inflammation other than 

diabetes were excluded.


“According to our study, even with controlled blood sugar levels, our patients still showed 

inflammation above the normal level. This increases their risk of getting a stroke or heart 

attack. They rely only on hemoglobin A1c tests. They haven’t had their hs-CRP checked,” 

Mozo told Inquirer Lifestyle.


The study, titled “The Effects of Malunggay (Moringa oleifera) leaves capsule supplements 

on High Specificity C-Reactive Protein (hsCRP) and Hemoglobin A1c (HgbA1c) Levels of 

Diabetic Patients,” does not just introduce malunggay capsule as supplement, but also 

suggests the need for hs-CRP to become a standard test.


Among diabetes’ deadly comorbidities are hypertension, dysregulation or build-up of 

cholesterol, and impairment in fibrinolysis that leads to blood thickening.


For three weeks, all 52 patients took the supplements three times a day alongside their 

maintenance medicine.


Dubbed “the wonder gulay,” malunggay leaves have been characterized by Trees for Life, 

the charity that works to restore the forest, to “contain more vitamin A than carrots, more 

calcium than milk, more iron than spinach, more vitamin C than oranges and more potassium 

than bananas.” It also noted that the quality of its protein rivals that of milk and egg.


“Why leaves? According to a phytochemical screening, the leaves have the most active 

ingredients compared to any other part of the plant such as the bark or root. The leaf extract 

as medicinal component appears to have the most level of all bioactives of interest,” Mozo 

said.

According to the American Heart Association, hs-CRP of less than 1 milligram per liter poses 

a low risk for stroke and heart attack. Moderate risk is involved for readings of 1-3, and high risk 

for 3-10.


Dropped


While all patients, on their first day, already showed controlled blood sugar, averaging a 

hemoglobin A1c count at 6.96 (a diabetic patient must aim for 7, Mozo said, while the norm 

for a nondiabetic is 6.5), they also showed a high risk of stroke and heart attack. 

Their hs-CRP averaged at 3.38.


After 12 weeks, the average hemoglobin A1c dropped to 6.06, and the hs-CRP down to 1.69 

or moderate risk.


“The .6-percent drop in hemoglobin A1c might look insignificant to the layman, but for a doctor, 

a 1-percent drop reduces the risk of microvascular complications such as stroke, eye blindness 

and heart attack by 40 percent, and death by 21 percent,” Mozo said.


Patients can, of course, opt for another brand, he noted.


What’s important is for the capsule to contain the same quality of leaves. This means they 

should be processed in a way approved by the Department of Science and Technology 

(dry-air processed), and containing the same dosage (500 mg), he said. Check that the 

leaves inside the capsule are still green.


“Processing of leaves keeps most of the nutrients intact. It’s easy to say it contains 500 mg 

of leaves, but you wouldn’t know if there are still nutrients left in there. DOST made a 

protocol for how to process malunggay leaves. They should still be green, not brown,” 

he said.


A 500-mg capsule contains an equivalent of two-and-a-half cups of malunggay leaves. 

Consumption of the supplement is relatively safe and has no known side effects. 

But since it contains a high amount of potassium, Mozo advises that patients with kidney 

problems must consult with their physicians first.


“This is just the beginning. What we should do next is conduct a randomized control study 

with bigger population size to further demonstrate the effect of malunggay capsules on 

hs-CRP and hemoglobin A1c,” Mozo said.



600 Reasons Turmeric May Be The World's Most Important Herb

GreenMedInfo Banner

600 Reasons Why Turmeric Is The World's Most Important Herb

There is a medicinal spice so timelessly interwoven with the origins of human culture and metabolism, so thoroughly supported by modern scientific inquiry, as to be unparalleled in its proven value to human health and well-being.
Indeed, turmeric turns the entire drug-based medical model on its head.  Instead of causing far more side effects than therapeutic ones, as is the case for most patented pharmaceutical medications, turmeric possesses hundreds of potential side benefits, having been empirically demonstrated to positively modulate over 160 different physiological pathways in the mammalian body.
While no food or herb is right for everyone, and everything has the potential for unintended, adverse side effects, turmeric is truly unique in its exceptionally high margin of safety vis-à-vis the drugs it has been compared with, e.g. hydrocortisone, ibuprofen, chemotherapy agents. Furthermore, nothing within the modern-day pharmaceutical armamentarium comes even remotely close to turmeric's 6,000 year track record of safe use in Ayurvedic medicine.[1]
Despite its vast potential for alleviating human suffering, turmeric will likely never receive the FDA stamp of approval, due to its lack of exclusivity, patentability and therefore profitability. Truth be told, the FDA's "gold standard" for proving the value of a prospective medicinal substance betrays the age old aphorism: "he who owns the gold makes the rules," and unless an investor is willing to risk losing the 800+ million dollars that must be spent upfront, the FDA-required multi-phased double-blind, randomized clinical trials will not occur. For additional details on this rather seedy arrangement read our article on the topic: Why The Law Forbids The Medicinal Use of Natural Substances.
Here at GreenMedInfo.com, we have reviewed over 5,000 study abstracts from the National Library of Medicine's bibliographic database known as MEDLINE and have discovered over 600 potential health benefits of turmeric, and/or its primary polyphenol known as curcumin. These can be viewed on our turmeric research page which is dedicated to disseminating the research on the topic to a larger audience.
Some of the most amazing demonstrated properties include:
Again, what is so amazing is not that turmeric may have value in dozens of health conditions simultaneously, or that it may improve conditions that are completely resistant to conventional treatment, but that there are over six hundred additional health conditions it may also be valuable in preventing and/or treating. Consider also the fact that turmeric grows freely on the Earth, and you will understand why its very existence threatens billions of dollars in pharmaceutical industry revenue.
Learn more about this research in the video below (keeping in mind that it is several years old and needing some updating), and please spread the information to others who may benefit from learning more on the topic

Denver Westword Blogs
Five Food Trends to Watch For in 2015
By Jenn Wohletz Mon., Jan. 5 2015 at 9:57 AM

2015 is already proving to be an strange, even contradictory year for foodies to follow. Between the weird-ass buttered coffee micro-trend and major fast food chains putting out feelers to re-brand burgers, fries, tacos, pizza and fried chicken as being fresh and less processed, 2015 is already shaping up to be an attention-grabbing year for food and drinks. What sort of titillating food trends might we all see this year? Well, the year is a week old and already "Vanilla Chex-gate" (hinky stuff with renaming high-fructose corn syrup) is garnering attention, and apparently buffet food might taste better if it costs more--because science.
Here are five food trends to watch in 2015. There's a variation of the paleo diet, the newest superfood, and massive fermentation. Hemp creeps into nutrition, and people are about done with grocery shopping already.

5) The paleo-vegan diet
On the off chance you've been living in a Paleolithic cave since 2013 or so and haven't heard, the paleo diet trend was mighty popular, with "caveman" principles like eating high-protein, low-carb meals and sticking to the ideals of a modern renaissance of hunter-gatherer fare. Most proponents have been heavy on the hunter side and decidedly lighter on the gatherer part, but vegans who court fad diet trends can rest easy; 2015 is looking like the "it" year for the paleo-vegan diet, a festive variation on the original fad. Going paleo-vegan consists of consuming staples like vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and some tubers (like sweet potatoes), and avoiding all grains, legumes, beans, dairy, alcohol, sugar, and starchy tubers (like potatoes).

Gathering yams as the centerpiece of a good meal isn't a terrible idea, but good luck chucking the cocktails and chocolate bars. Hang tight if all of this doesn't sound appealing, because whatever next year's fad diet trend is, chances are it will be the opposite of 2015's.

4. Moringa


Where would we all be without at least one "new," "exotic," and relatively unheard-of superfood every year? 2015's new shiny guardian of good health is moringa leaves, from trees indigenous to Northern Africa -- specifically moringa oleifera . Proponents compare Moringa to spirulina and wheat grass and it allegedly to provides various and sundry health enhancements such as high protein, vitamin C, potassium, iron, vitamin A and antioxidants. The leaves are also high in a plant hormone called zeatin, reputed to be an anti-aging substance. Moringa is growing in popularity and is available in powder, capsules and tea form (and probably even a suppository at some point in the future).
It's hard to know whether to yawn or get excited over some leaves that have been around for a pretty long time, but if it turns out these leaves can cure cancer or make you shit gold bricks, that would be swell.

3) Hemp seeds
News flash: chia is out -- hemp seeds are in. I'm actually going to miss chia seeds because ground up and placed in delicious tropical fruit smoothies, they turn into an appetite-satisfying gel goop full of omega-3 oil. But if hemp seeds are gonna replace them I won't leak saltwater because hemp seeds are full of recognized healthy goodness like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, zinc, calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, iron and vitamin A. Hemp seeds are also pretty tasty (or at least mild-flavored and -textured enough to be non-intrusive when added to oatmeal or smoothies) with a light, almost pine-nutty flavor that goes well sprinkled on things like salads.

In other words, you don't have to grind up hemp seeds and sneak them into things like you do with chia, and with the cannabis prohibition days coming to a close, more folks will be less spooked by anything sounding weed-y.

2) Fermented foods
Fermenting has been around since pretty close to the dawn of civilization, and zymology is just plain remarkable (huge food nerd alert!). Fermented foods like yogurt, cheese, coffee beans, sourdough bread, pickles, wine and miso are already prevalent, but products like kombucha (a slightly effervescent drink made from fermented tea and sugar) have become more mainstream the last few years, leading to a renewal of interest in the sour flavors and fizzy mouthfeel of fermenty eats and drinks. And aside from the more obvious likeable qualities of fermenting, the "good" bacteria used in fermentation is a time-honored digestive aid, helpful in maintain healthy levels of gut flora and well-balanced innard-ecology.
In other words, fermented foods make you poop in ways that are good, which should be important to everybody, all the time.

1) Grocery delivery
If any of the up and coming food trends for 2015 gives off a distinctive air of "saw that coming," it is having groceries delivered. Anyone who has ever had Schwan's delivered knows the unadulterated joy at seeing the yellow truck pull into the driveway (and how magically delicious Schwan's chocolate malt push-pops are). The trend of online shopping for groceries to be delivered is turning out to be less of an expensive luxury, and more of a solution for busy people to get their fridges filled for nominal fees. I'm a freakjob who enjoys grocery shopping and who regards food being brought to me as a fun but sporadic novelty, but even I have to admit that when big-box stores like Wal-Mart now offer grocery delivery at reasonable rates, there must be compelling reasons for this type of market niche blowing up big like it has.
Simply put, more people are busy as hell, and would rather pay for the convenience, and customer service in many grocery stores is undeniably poor, leaving customers unwilling to bother shopping in real time. It's interesting to see stores like Wal-Mart being both a cause and a solution to a problem, but 2015 already looks to be a year of food industry contradictions with plenty to ponder before 2016.


Moringa: ‘The Miracle Tree’

Moringa: ‘The Miracle Tree’
Taken from the Royal Gazette By Frances Eddy
      


Moringa has extraordinary nutritional and medicinal benefits
Moringa! It sounds like a Latin dance but it is a health-giving tree popping up in unexpected spaces: solitary at a front door, bordering a pristine lawn, sidewalk next to al fresco dining, and in conversations, even among the mildly health conscious. Moringa powders, pastes and teas have been spotted at local health food stores, supermarkets, pharmacies, and most recently at the reopened Farmers Market.
I would say Moringa has arrived.
It is a highly nutritious tropical/subtropical plant dubbed “The Miracle Tree” because of its extraordinary nutritional and medicinal benefits. Fortunately it can grow year round in our climate and has the potential for locally made products and improving local health.
Moringa oleifera is a slender tree with delicate leaves resembling those of Poinciana that has the status of super food exceeding the likes of King Kale. Every part of the plant can be eaten: leaves, stem, bark, root, flower, seedpod and seeds. It is esteemed worldwide as an energy booster, treatment for 300 diseases, malnutrition, and many other uses.
Dr Monica Marcu, pharmacology researcher and author of the definitive book on Moringa entitled Miracle Tree writes: “It is the most nutrient-rich plant yet discovered providing a rich and rare combination of nutrients, amino acids, antioxidants, anti-ageing, and anti-inflammatory properties.”
Nutrient Comparisons
The chart below compares the nutrient values of 100 grams of some common foods with fresh and dried moringa leaves. Note that dried leaf values are significantly higher than fresh leaves. It takes seven pounds of fresh leaves to make one pound of dried ground leaves.
Are the claims legitimate?
Moringa has been used as medicine and food in traditional cultures with results observed for centuries but many people like scientific verification. I suggest reading the Trees for Life Journal, an open-access online publication of traditional and scientific studies of beneficial trees and plants. Its aim is to bridge traditional and scientific worlds.
Growing Moringa
Moringa can be grown in pots or in the ground started from seeds or cuttings. The seeds can be planted soon after they mature and are viable for one year. If planting directly in the ground, dig a hole one foot deep, mix in an organic fertiliser, plant the seeds three quarters of an inch to one inch deep and water thoroughly. Germination takes one or two weeks. For cuttings, use finger-thick lengths a foot or more long, and bury a third of it in a sterile potting mix to root.
I prefer plants grown in pots one foot or more before transplanting in the ground. Plant one foot apart for hedges and a few feet for larger trees. Periodically cut the branches back to half for easy harvesting, to encourage new growth and flower/seed production, and a bushier tree. My two trees survived Fay and Gonzalo hurricanes and are now lush with new leaves.
Is Moringa invasive?
Introductions should always be closely observed for signs of invasive tendencies. Elsewhere seeds typically remain close to the tree from which they have fallen unless they are deliberately collected and planted; this reduces the likelihood of them spreading far from their original planting location.
How to eat and how much?
Moringa leaves are enjoyed eaten raw alone, in salads, or added to endless drinks and cooked dishes. Fresh leaves are best as they have a high concentration of chlorophyll that heals by rejuvenating the body at the cellular level, strengthening the immune system and naturally cleansing the body of toxins. However, it takes 10 times more fresh leaves as dried every day which can cause diarrhoea and mild stomach upsets from the detoxifying effects, so don’t go overboard. The dried product is more potent and easier to measure. One teaspoon to one tablespoon per day of the powder is generally recommended for a healthy adult taken with food, starting with the smaller amount.
Drying and powdering
To dry Moringa I place sprigs on a cookie sheet in my pilot-lit gas oven overnight. A hot water heater, the sun, or a dehydrator also works. Once dried, slide the leaves off the stems into a blender and grind to a fine powder. It keeps in a tightly closed jar without refrigeration for months.
Cautions
The internet Drug Index for prescription drugs, Rxlist, states that Moringa leaves, fruit and seeds are safe when consumed with food but to avoid the roots and it extracts. Moringa is not a replacement for a healthy diet with diverse fruits and vegetables. More is not necessarily better.


How a plant-based diet can reduce hypertension and prevent stroke




MEATLESS BUT MORE NUTRITIOUS Malunggay soup (with tomatoes, onions, organic vegan bouillon cubes and Himalayan salt), string beans (with shiitake mushrooms, okra, eggplant, Braggs tomato sauce) and oil-less fried, non-GMO soy wheat stick (with seaweeds). Safe proteins were found to be from plants.
What do five of the 10 leading causes of illness and death in the Philippines have in common? Coronary heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes and atherosclerosis are all associated with our diets.

In particular, stroke, a disease of the vascular system, has strong links to what we eat.
Experts say that nutrients found in plants are associated with a lower risk of cognitive decline in old age, and that food sourced from plants is one of our best natural allies to help prevent stroke.

Scientist T. Colin Campbell, PhD, coauthor of “The China Study,” cited a publication from the well-known Framingham Study which had researchers concluding that for every three additional servings of fruits and vegetables a day, the risk of stroke could be reduced by 22 percent. This was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (Jama) titled “Protective effect of fruits and vegetables on development of stroke in men” by Gilman M.W., Cupples L.A., Gagnon D., et al.

“Three servings of fruits and vegetables is less than you might think. The following examples count as one serving in this study: 1/2 cup peaches, 1/4 cup tomato sauce, 1/2 cup broccoli, or one potato,” said Campbell, who is a vegan, when he was interviewed by Inquirer Science and Health a few years ago.

Campbell said: “Half a cup is not much. In fact, the men in this study who consumed the most fruits and vegetables consumed as many as 19 servings a day. If every three servings lower the risk by 22 percent, the benefits can add up fast (risk reduction approaches but cannot exceed 100 percent).”

Campbell noted that this study provides evidence that the health of the arteries and vessels that transport blood to and from your brain is dependent on how well you eat. By extension, it is logical to assume that eating fruits and vegetables will protect against dementia caused by poor vascular health.

Effective vs hypertension
Vegetarian diets also reduce the risk of hypertension, according to new research published recently in the Jama Internal Medicine by physicians committee president Neal Barnard, MD, and researcher Yoko Yokoyama, PhD, MPH. The meta-analysis compared blood pressure from more than 21,000 people around the world and found study participants who followed a vegetarian diet had a systolic blood pressure about 7 mm Hg lower and diastolic blood pressure 5 mm Hg lower than study participants who consumed an omnivorous diet. The study was also published in the health website Fit Fathers.

“Instead of readjusting the definition for hypertension, as was done in the recent guideline revision, let’s write prescriptions for plant-based foods,” Barnard said. “Compared to antihypertensive drugs, a diet change brings only desirable ‘side effects,’ including healthy weight loss and improved cholesterol, along with the lower blood pressure.”
The Jama meta-analysis report also pointed out that:

Obesity, sodium and alcohol consumption increase blood pressure and risk for hypertension.
Potassium intake and physical activity correlate directly with lower blood pressure.
Unsaturated fat, protein, magnesium and dietary fiber may reduce risk for hypertension.
Hypertensive study participants who combine antihypertensive medications with a plant-based diet lower blood pressure by an average of 5/2 mm Hg in just six weeks.

A 2013 study from the American Journal of Medicine (T. Akbaraly, S. Sabia, G. Hagger-Johnson, et al.) indicated that eating more meat, dairy and other unhealthful foods could worsen the effects of aging.

After an average 16-year followup, people who consumed a “Western-type” diet, which consists of high intakes of red and processed meats, whole dairy products, and fried foods, were more likely to die prematurely and to suffer from various chronic diseases including heart disease, stroke, cancer and mental health disorders, compared with people who avoided such dietary patterns.


Ramen risks: Why instant noodles are bad for your health

Instant ramen noodles bad for health: study


A new study suggests instant noodles may increase the risk for heart disease and stroke. (Dominik Schwind / Flickr)

Marlene Leung, CTVNews.ca 
Published Tuesday, August 19, 2014 10:40AM EDT 

Instant noodles have long been a popular meal option, loved for their convenience and low cost. But a new study suggests they may increase the risk for heart disease and stroke. And the study has sparked renewed interest in an eye-opening video that shows how our stomachs handle processed foods.
The study, published last week in The Journal of Nutrition, was based off of data from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2007-2009.
Using the survey data, researchers examined the diets of a total of 10,711 adults between the ages of 19-64.
They found that consumption of instant noodles two or more times a week was associated with a higher prevalence of metabolic syndrome in women but not in men. Metabolic syndrome is set of conditions – including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess abdominal fat and abnormal cholesterol -- which combined increase the risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
The study's lead investigator, Dr. Hyun Joon Shin, said the observed differences between the women and men in the study are likely attributable to biological differences between the sexes, including sex hormones and metabolism.
Shin also said that a chemical found in the instant noodle packaging may be another factor affecting the gender difference.
A chemical called bisphenol A (BPA) is commonly found in the Styrofoam containers used to hold some brands of instant noodles. Studies have shown that BPA can interfere with the body's hormones, particularly the female sex hormone estrogen, Shin said in a statement.
Shin, who is a clinical cardiology fellow at Texas' Baylor University Medical Center, said the results of the study highlight the importance of understanding the impact of what types of foods and substances we put into our bodies.
"This research is significant since many people are consuming instant noodles without knowing possible health risks," he said in the statement. "My hope is that this study can lay a foundation for future research about the health effects of instant noodle consumption."
This isn't the first time the ingredients found in instant noodles have come under scrutiny.
A stomach-churning 2011 video showed for the first time how our bodies differently digest instant noodles compared to homemade noodles. 
Using tiny cameras that can be ingested, participants in a small trial ate processed instant noodles and homemade noodles. They then swallowed the camera, which transmitted video footage from inside their gastrointestinal tract.
Video footage from inside the digestive tract showed stark differences.
The digestive tracts are seen contracting and convulsing to break down the noodles. More than two hours after consumption, the instant noodles aren’t broken down, and their shape and colour are still largely recognizable. By comparison, the homemade noodles are nearly completely broken down.