Category Archives: Annis Newsletters in English

A telomere by Anni Dahms

Telomere Loss Health Concept

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I My daughter called me one Sunday and asked me with excitement and a little didactically, if I had ever heard of the telomeres. I told her, with a bit of pride, that around 35 years ago I attended a symposium with international scientists, where the topic of telomeres was a part of some of the lectures. I told her that I had shelved the topic, partly because there weren’t many people in my social circle, who had knowledge of the subject and partly because back in those days, people spoke of the topic as if they had found the key to eternal life. My daughter recounted that the telomeres seem to be a topic which is very debated right now at numerous conferences and courses. What is debated is partly its function and partly how we as individuals can strengthen and lengthen our telomeres, so that we might slow or even reverse our aging, fueling us with new energy, even sexually.

What is a telomere?
We have a counter in our body, called telomeres, they are present in our DNA and decide how many times a cell can divide itself, before it ages and eventually dies.

Human cell, chromosome and telomereTelomeres are small DNA sequences, which protect the chromosome-endings every time the cell divides. The telomeres function as a buffer which protects the chromosomes genetic information at cell division.

The research
Since I try my best to keep up to date with the newest research developments in healthy living, have I started to read up on the research on telomeres and telomerase. Telomerase is the enzyme we produce, to build, rejuvenate, and extend the telomeres that we have. The end-point for how long lives can be is, according to scientists’ accounts, roughly around 120 years, which for some reason present some mystical upper-bound for how old human beings can become. There are multiple biblical stories that mention elderly people, but generally in multiple societies, 120 years is more or less the “normal age”. It’s possible in many of these societies to keep a healthy and industrious life with age. The telomeres are shortened with every cell division and scientists believe that it is the shortening of our telomeres that leads to ageing and eventually death. When we are born the individual telomere is quite long and is then reduced throughout life. For instance, on average it will be reduced with 29% at age 35, and from there it will be halved at age 65. Shorter telomeres are connected to chronic illnesses and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. The telomeres can be improved by strengthening the enzyme telomerase. Those factors, with which we can help our telomerase along, seem to be a mixture of a good diet, no drugs or alcohol, enough sleep, and less stress. Stress seem to be a huge factor. A study conducted at the George Mansion university, showed that women with children have shorter telomeres, than women without children. We know that the telomeres are nourished by the enzyme telomerase. This means that having enough telomerase can help repair and rejuvenate the telomeres.

You obviously need a healthy diet!
It is the diet that will help keep your telomeres healthy and strong and help the formation of the enzyme telomerase, which in turn will help the telomeres. Avoid destroying the body with intoxicating drugs, too much alcohol, and refined carbohydrates with sugar, unhealthy fats, and fried foods. You can use coconut oil. It is a healthy alternative, because it can stand the very high temperatures needed when cooking. A high-quality olive oil or avocado oil can also be recommended for use in your daily cooking. In general you should be careful with eating foods that are already cooked or very processed, so that it’s very boiled. When something is very processed, the enzymes are destroyed and with it all the life in the food which was supposed to nourish us. I find it quite absurd that I see more fine and modernized kitchens than ever before, but at the same time it becomes more and more normal to buy precooked meals, with poor oils, sugars, preservatives, artificial aromas, and colorants. How can we even pretend to imagine that foods of such poor quality can provide the body with the nutrients it amicably asks for. Instead the body has to resort to different diseases, such as diabetes, cancer, dementia, heart disease, osteoporosis etc. It is necessary to have proper dietary habits, but don’t stress about it! Stress is very bad if you want to keep your telomeres healthy. Make sure that you eat sufficient amounts of omega-3 fats. That means eating plenty of fatty fish such as wild salmon. Studies have shown that the telomeres aren’t shortened as fast in people with high levels of omega-3 oils. Eat plenty of green-leafed vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, avocado. You could also make different kind of berries a stable part of your diet, such as mulberries, acai berries, raisins, grapes, and red grapefruit. You should also remember fruits such as apple, kiwi, mango, papaya, and pineapple. You want to generally eat more of a plant-based diet, which is rich in antioxidants. Avoid eating too much meat. If at all possible, make sure that the meat is from animals who have had great lives and walked on grass. Lets lenses be a part of your daily diet. Drink plenty of green tea. It is best if you make your own tea and avoid the premade one in bottles. Make sure you get plenty of nuts, almonds, and seeds.

Dietary supplements
It has been shown that a long string of supplements can prevent a premature shortening of the telomeres. As I always say, you have to start with a base of good vitamins and minerals to keep the body in balance.

  • Make sure that you get a vitamin-B supplement, which has all the different vitamin-Bs in high doses. It has been shown that vitamin-B has a positive effect and can help lengthen your telomeres.
  • Additionally, you could take an extra supplement of B12, either as droplets or in spray form. You could also combine the consumption of B12 with folic acid. They are mixed in multiple products.
  • Take vitamin-C, between 1000 – 3000 mg daily. Vitamin-C prevents loss of telomeres, and it also increases the activity of telomerases.
  • It is best to take vitamin-E with different natural tocopherols, between 40 – 400 mg daily.
  • Zinc should be taken in the evening, in doses of around 20 – 50 mg daily.
  • Magnesium in an easily absorbable form, should be taken in the dosage of 400 – 800 mg daily.
  • If you don’t get plenty of sunshine, then remember vitamin-D. If you want vitamin-D naturally, then make sure you get 15 minutes of sun on all your body, 3 -5 times weekly.
  • The amino acid acetyl L-carnitine is both a brain booster and can help active telomerase, which will benefit your telomeres.
  • If you are a vegetarian, or you eat very small amounts of meat, then it might be a good idea to supplement with L-carnosine, which help you maintain healthy telomeres, and repair damaged tissue and remove toxins. Take between 400 – 600 mg twice daily, if you don’t eat meat at all.
  • L-arginine activates the telomerase. Take 500 – 1000 mg daily.
  • Milk thistle, which we normally use to clean our liver, have been shown to have a positive effect on the telomerase activity.
  • The same is true for Gingko Biloba, which is normally used as a brain booster. I recommend that you do a 6-week cure, and then stop for the following 6 weeks.
  • Astragalus, that has been used for thousands of years to strengthen the body, the immune system, and the heart circulation, has been shown to have a fantastic ability to boost telomerase production, to the benefit of the telomeres.

Tips
It has been seen, according to many different studies, that the telomeres have a great importance in the aging process, and they are heavily effected and shorten much faster when we are stressed. Chronic stress degrades the telomeres and as an effect of that, promotes increased aging.
It is therefore of the utmost importance to reduce your stress levels. I think we all cherish life and that we should take stress seriously and work ourselves out of it, by for instance throwing yourself into some healthy diversions, or reduce your work pace or whatever is causing your stress. You might consider seeking professional help, that could give you some tools to better handle your stress, maybe just through some important keywords.
I would like to pin point that I’m sure that living a long life is not only about lengthening your telomeres. I recently read an article about a woman who was roughly 120 years old. She was on the front page of the news papers and were asked to explain why she had such a good health. Without hesitation she answered that it was love. Love for her husband, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and other family.
Every day, all day, every single moment we make a choice about how we fill our lives. We choose through life, through the words we speak, the food we eat, through our actions, and those exchanges we have with the outside world and the people around us and the large wonderful world as a whole.
Thus this is reflected in our vitality. If we want to improve it, then it takes true bravery, fearlessness, and a strong self-discipline, which must never become a stress factor…

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Autoimmune diseases by Anni Dahms

Cropped image woman with joint inflammation. Female's elbow

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I hear of an increasing number of people that suffer from what is called autoimmune diseases. There are even more and more people that suffer from multiple autoimmune illnesses at the same time.
An autoimmune disease, is when the immune system wrongly attacks its own cells and tissue.

When I was a young nurse, I rarely heard of autoimmune diseases and the expression was used with great respect. Now the word has become more normalized and is used to describe a myriad of different illnesses. 

By looking at the list of what is now considered autoimmune diseases, it looks to me like we might as well call them “our actual civilization diseases”.

I believe, and my belief is shared by many researchers, that a large amount of autoimmune diseases are caused by a leaking mucosa in the intestines. It appears, from researcher’s perspective, that as long as the bacterial composition is in balance, from living and eating reasonably healthy, we will be protected from many illnesses. And on the contrary, if we eat unhealthily, struggle with infections, and use antibiotics or other kinds of medicine, then we become more susceptible to diseases.

The genes we get from our ancestors can be a contributing factor. All ages can develop autoimmune diseases, but some of these diseases are more common when we age. It is thought that roughly 3 – 400,000 Danes suffer from autoimmune diseases. 3 out of 4 of them are women. Researchers have until now discovered over 100 different autoimmune diseases.

Many autoimmune illnesses develop silently over many years. They start for instance with hair loss, tiredness, problems sleeping, muscle pain, and similar symptoms.

Some of the most common illnesses, which are a part of the autoimmune diseases are Sjögren syndrome, type-1 diabetes, lupus, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto’s disease, celiac disease, and many different variations of allergies and asthma.

It would appear that people, who have had certain diseases, such as mononucleosis, herpes zoster, different forms of the herpes virus, gingivitis have an increased risk of autoimmune diseases. I’ve read that having had mononucleosis increases you risk of attracting an autoimmune disease by 30%.

Other large factors can contribute, such as the quality and the cleanliness of our food and beverages, how clean is the air we are breathing? Do we even have any locations with clean air? 

Heavy metal poisoning, too much sun, heat, or cold together with smoking also plays a role.

An interesting discovery has been, that children who live together with furry animals are less likely to develop allergies. 

Other researchers believe that the many vaccinations and other forms of medication contribute in promoting autoimmune diseases.

sund_madThe diet

What dietary changes you should make, obviously depend the given autoimmune disease in question. Nevertheless, some common guidelines can be made. There is not one diet which is great for all autoimmune illnesses, but it is always important with a healthy and varied diet. If you need individual guidance tailored specifically for your illness, then it might be a good idea to contact a skilled dietician or nutritionist, that can provide you with more concrete instructions for what would be good to eat in your situation.

Eat natural and unprocessed foods whenever it’s possible. I think it’s especially important for delicate people to eat ecological.

Avoid too much poor-quality meat, especially be careful with dark meat, too much poor fat, sugar, salt, fast food, too many spices, as well as all forms of alcohol. There have been studies which have shown, that eating a vegetarian diet can decrease the activity of certain autoimmune illnesses.

Avoid cola and coffee, together with all other caffeinated drinks. If you are a devoted coffee drinker, then you’ll be more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis. Try drinking green tea and other herbal teas and drink juices from fruits and vegetables.

Make sure that you get plenty of good ecological vegetables, fruits, whole-wheat products, fat fish, different nuts, and olive oil of the highest quality. You could also eat a bit of ecological butter, which contains healthy fats.

Some people have a hard time processing dairy products, just as it might be an idea to avoid foods with gluten. Gluten is especially present in wheat, rye, barley, and to a lesser extent in oats. There are researchers who hold the opinion, that glutinous foods can open you up to autoimmune diseases, as they believe that the gluten weakens the mucosa in the intestines and can make it leak. That would mean that food scraps, toxins, virus, and bacteria could flow straight into your blood and in that way provoke an autoimmune disease.

More researchers are also convinced that gluten can be problematic for people who might suffer from an autoimmune illness without being aware of it.

I have personally never been diagnosed with any autoimmune disease, but I’ve discovered that I feel slightly uneasy and have trouble with my intestinal system, as well as my delicate heart which starts racing, after consuming gluten.

In some cases you might also need to avoid foods from the night shadow family, such as tomatoes and potatoes.

Dietary supplements

  • Take a base multivitamin / mineral product of high quality.
  • Make sure to get the important omega-3 oils and combine it preferably with a good flaxseed oil.
  • A completely incredible antioxidant is alpha-lipoic acid. It is an antioxidant that can aid significantly with most autoimmune illnesses. If you start taking alpha-lipoic acid you will, in most cases, feel a rapid improvement. Not only does it help combat autoimmune diseases, it also sharpens the memory.
  • For most of us it will be important with a supplement of vitamin-D. More American researchers believe that many autoimmune diseases can be connected with lack of vitamin-D. There are multiple studies, which show that vitamin-D can help people with mb chron. Vitamin-D is present in foods such as fat fish. If you don’t like fish, then you should have extra focus on getting your vitamin-D supplement. Vitamin-D has a very important influence on the immune system, which makes it functions optimally. The dose should be around 100 mcg daily. The older you are, the higher the chance is that you’ll contract an autoimmune disease. The intestines absorption of vitamin-D is reduced with age. It is therefore especially important to take an extra supplement of this daily.
  • It also might be a good idea with an extra supplement of zinc. If you for instance lack zinc, then it can affect more than 100 different enzyme processes. The doses should be between 20 – 40 mg daily, and it is best to take it in the evening.
  • Supplement with manganese.
  • Take selenium in its organic form, roughly 200mcg daily.
  • Cats claw is good for cleaning out the entire intestinal system and can be helpful with different autoimmune illnesses. It can also help with a set of harmful bacteria, viruses, and parasites. The entire immune system will most likely be improved.
  • Curcumin which is extracted from turmeric counteracts many overreactions in the immune system caused by autoimmune diseases. Curcumin has an antioxidant effect and is an active key ingredient in turmeric.
  • Make sure you get an extra supplement of high-quality vitamin-C, preferably combined with bioflavonoids.
  • It is important to have a healthy intestinal flora. Liquid Vita Biosa is a collection of healthy bacteria and mushrooms, which are great for reestablishing a healthy intestinal flora. There is a myriad of different lactic acid products. It is important to choose one of high quality and to change them every now and again.

Tips

  • If you have silver fillings in your teeth, you might want to consider consulting a dentist with experience and knowledge of safe amalgam removal. Mercury is seen by many experts, as a cause of different autoimmune illnesses.
  • If you are a smoker, then quit it. Smoking can lead to different autoimmune diseases. If it’s too big of a mouthful to quit your cigarettes completely, then I believe in the milder spectrum of therapists, who believes that you should reduce your cigarette consumption to 5 or even better, to 2, then you have made a great effort, and you can realistically live a good life.
  • For and against vaccinations is a very hot discussion topic at the moment. If you are planning on getting a vaccination or you have a child which is about to get vaccinated, then I think it is worth the effort to read up on the views, both for and against, and then use that information to make your own decision.
  • Stress weakens our immune system and is believed to be a triggering factor for autoimmune diseases.
  • The same can be said for getting too little sleep. A good night’s sleep is important for us and our wellbeing.
  • It is therefore essential, that we put our worries behind us when we go to sleep. Keep disturbing elements out of the bedroom. Make sure the room is cool and ventilated and have a quality bed. Keep mobile phones, TV, and computers away from the bedroom.
  • You could for instance read a bit in an uncomplicated book or listen to soothing music.
  • Use your body properly every day, and make sure you get exercise that fits your type, without having it being dependent on elitism or competition, so it doesn’t become a stress factor. It could for instance be a daily walk in a peaceful environment. You should know that, if you exaggerate your exercise, then it might be immunosuppressive.

Important: Enjoy life and happiness

Happiness by Anni Dahms

Senior Woman Jumping On Beautiful Beach

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After I successfully overcame my sickness with heart complications, water in my lungs, and hypertension, I have decided to consciously seek happiness. I’ve made this decision based on different literary sources, which have inspired to see, that the body and the immune system work best with those who are happy and easily laugh. Laughter and joy are important tools for regaining your strength. As a self-prescribed therapy, I’ve chosen to invite laughter back into my life.  Laughter releases happiness hormones.

I’ve always demanded a lot from myself, had many things I wanted to accomplish and gone after them with all that I could muster.

I’ve become more conscious of not turning my heart’s desires into a heart disease. I’m working on seriously re-ordering my priorities and learning to take myself and others less seriously, and instead focus on all the wonderful bright sides that are part of my every day life.It’s important for me to have a joyful heart completely free of fear. I want to make it a habit to be in the state of equilibrium and balance.

In the book “Anatomy of an illness as perceived by the patient”, Norman Cousin writes about his battle with the disease morbus bechterew, which is an illness that makes the bones in your spine grow together. He refused to give up. The short version is, that he used daily laughter and plenty of humor combined with a vitamin-C and a less hectic lifestyle to regain his health.

The change to a more joyful lifestyle doesn’t happen by itself. If you decide to increase the level of joy in your life,it therefore demands that you decide to train and make an effort. Just as with people who play sports, you will properly lose your capacity if you stop training.

I’m not saying that we should be positive happy doormats, that is in my opinion way too shallow. We should have our viewpoints and express them, while remaining friendly. You cannot be happy all the time. With life comes both critique, disappointment, sorrow, and negativity. We have to live through it, and then it’s back on the horse in the pursuit of happiness. 

When you decide to be live a happy lifestyle, then start slowly and don’t blame yourself if you get angry or upset. You could’ for instance’ start when you are driving your car, practice having tolerance, balance, and forbearance whilst maneuvering through rush-hours causing many stress factors.

When you throw yourself into project “happiness”, you must remain mindful of your daily bases. 

In addition, you must use your creativity and curiosity. Seek out the things that make you laugh. Laugh all throughout the day. And make sure that you do something you enjoy every single day. It’s great with new experiences involving things such as games, dancing, singing, or music. These are things that affect our brain. You will obviously make plenty of mistakes during your new project, but just laugh it off and get back at it. Practice makes perfect.

As the old saying goes: “smile! And the world will smile back”. When I smile at people, my smile will often be returned. I often think of the Danish pianist and entertainer Victor Borges wise book “A smile is the shortest distance”. It describes it beautifully.

There is an eastern meditation which I’ve thoroughly enjoyed, I practice it when I’m alone, by holding half a smile. The facial expression is enough to make me feel more at peace and reduce my stress.


The diet

I always highlight the importance of a high-quality diet in all my articles, and I would also like to pinpoint it’s utmost importance when it comes happiness. As you consume lovely high-quality food, you must be mindful of chewing your food properly and eating in peace and quit. Too many people devour their meals and in doing so, it also affects their lives.

First and foremost, completely remove the white flour and white sugar from you diet. Especially the combination of fat and sugar is dangerous. So, when you are hit with a craving for a Danish pastry filled with cream and sugar, you should go instead for something healthy and sweet, such as dates, figs, grapes, oranges, honey, or choose a banana with lots of great vitamin-B, perhaps combining it with some nuts, almonds, or seeds. All nuts are healthy, but walnuts are especially rich in omega-3. Cashew nuts are very rich in zinc, which is good if you experience anxiety. Fruits can help promote well-being, so make sure that you include berries in your daily diet too.

You can also enjoy a piece of dark chocolate, which is filled with antioxidants and other mood boosting substances.

Corn products could be brown rice, barley, oats, buckwheat, and quinoa. Make your own portion of ecological oatmeal. Oatmeal is known for its calming effect and it can help increase your happiness.

Decrease your alcohol consumption. It will put a strain on your liver and imbalance your blood sugar. If you want to drink alcohol, consume  only very small amounts, and do it together with food that are fatty and oily. It reduces the absorption of the alcohol,and,drink plenty of water.

Avoid energy drinks, cola, and other carbonated drinks, you should also stay clear of any with artificial sweeteners.

Let the coffee you drink be of high quality and enjoy it in limited amounts. Be careful not to drink coffee too late in the day, it can easily destroy a good night’s sleep. You could also consider using a bit of cream as it reduces the effect of the caffeine.

Drink green tea and other herbal teas instead.

Instead of drinking cow’s milk, which doesn’t suit many people, you might opt for a full flavoured and healthy substitute, such as soy, rice, or almond milk, that might be mixed with nuts or coconut.

Make sure that you get plenty of vegetables, even as vegetable juices. You might want to consider spinach, which contains an array of good substances, which may increase your mood, for instance,due of its content of magnesium. Remember the leguminous fruits. A chickpea pancake is one of the best snacks for a happy brain. Ecological eggs with Omega 3 contain, in their raw or light cooked states, lecithin, which also aids your brain. Let fish and poultry be a stable part of your diet. Buy wild salmon if possible and make sure the poultry is ecological.

Lamb and steak are things that I personally enjoy, but I’m very careful with it, and I make sure that it’s meat from free range animals. I avoid smoked and salted products, as that alters the taste of quality.

I read an article, by writer and blogger Karin Lyager, saying studies have shown that vegetarians and vegans are more likely to be hit with depression than meat eaters. I admire the people who make these dietary choices, but I’m also well aware, that I cannot muster that lifestyle. However, I always make sure that the meat I eat is from animals who have led wonderful lives.

Choose good oils for your cooking. I’m personally most fond of olive oil, but I also enjoy flaxseed oil for my vegetables and salads. Coconut oil and butter is also great.

Dietary supplements

  • Supplements play a large role, if you aim to have a happy every day. Remember to take them on a regular basis.
  • Make sure you take a high-dosed multivitamin/mineral product.
  • You should also get a high-quality Omega-3 product.
  • Vitamin-C is one of the most important vitamins ,for me personally. It aids, among other things,the adrenocortical hormones and adrenal steroid hormones, as well as the immune system. The bioflavonoids belong to the vitamin-C complex. It’s therefore important to take a vitamin-C supplement which contains bioflavonoids to make an optimal absorption.
  • A vitamin-E supplement mixed with tocopherol ‘decreases the ageing process and provides nutrition for the entire body.
  • B-complex supports our immune system, among other things, and has an influence on our serotonin levels (the happiness hormone).
  • Lecithin is a fat, which is present in all cells. Lecithin promotes mental well-being and keeps you calm.
  • Q10 is included in the mitochondrial membrane. The mitochondria are the cell’s power plants and contributes by giving you energy.
  • PQQ describes the perfect partner to Q10. I see PQQ as a huge breakthrough and a great help in improving your health. Q10 helps the mitochondria function properly and PQQ can make new mitochondria. PQQ’s entire name is pyrroloquinoline quinone. It is found in different foods, and  in breastmilk.
    It was shown, in a 12-week double blind study, that a supplement of PQQ could reduce tiredness and nervousness, lower a heightened cholesterol, improve the quality of sleep, and improve the overall vitality.

Tips

  • Lack of sleep is the worst enemy of happiness. Getting an adequate amount of sleep plays important part in living a happy and harmonious life. Most people are best served by sleeping eight hours. Avoid chemical sleep medications. You should instead drink a bit of chamomile tea or consume other calming herbs or herbal tea. If you have difficulty falling asleep, then make it a habit to go to bed at 22:00. 
  • Make sure to exercise at least half an hour daily. Take a walk in nature where you are exposed to the full spectrum of light. Remember that play, dance and love are also forms of exercise.
  •  Remember to stay grateful. Be grateful for all the little things we often take for granted.

Hypertension by Anni Dahms

In panic, I call my son five minutes to midnight on a Sunday evening. Luckily, he isn’t far away. With terror in my voice I tell him that I can’t breathe and that he must call an ambulance.

He quickly calls 112 and explains the situation, all whilst my breathing is getting worse and worse. He calls again, and they calm him and inform him that they will arrive shortly.

Ten minutes after the first call, three large paramedics arrive, who quickly assess how severe the situation is. One of them starts to give me oxygen, whilst the others move the furniture out of the way, so they can move me into the ambulance. I was told all of this later, my only focus at the time was to continue breathing.

My son was instructed, in the ambulance, that he could follow them in his car, as long as he drove in a proper manner. Somewhat jokingly they said they didn’t want anymore accidents.

In the ambulance I’m given the most wonderful oxygen, which is the only thing I perceive. I hear the driver ask if they should speed up, but the guy who is next to me says “no – put on some music”.

The whole process was very calming and professional. I wish I knew the names of the three men, so I could bring them a box of chocolate and a bottle of wine. I sadly don’t know how to reach them. If any of them should happen to read this, they should know that they are more than welcome to visit the store in Los Boliches, as I would love to thank my three heroes.

I’m expected when I arrive at the hospital Costa del Sol, everything is ready for me. I’m transferred from the stretcher into the bed, with the help of moving mattresses, which I hardly notice. The treatment is completely professional here as well. An IV drip is administered, I’m given different injections, and X-rays are taken. The oxygen mask is also changed and becomes permanent.

The diagnosis is, that my heart, due to some conduction disturbances and an elevated blood pressure level, had filled my lungs with water, therefore I couldn’t breathe.

When the first aid was completed, I was taken to intensive care and my shocked son had in the meantime informed the entire family, who were permitted to come in.

I laid in intensive care for around a day, and was attended by a cardiologist and another doctor. I demanded to be sent home, whilst wearing my oxygen mask and being hooked up to all kinds of IV drips! I suddenly felt that it was unbearable to lie in the hospital. The treatment was again very professional. One of the doctors told me, that my health was very poor, but if I insisted, then would always treat me if I returned. My son and I discussed it, and we both thought that the doctors were very skillful, so I decided to stay for further tests. Afterwards I was taken to the cardiology department.

Hypertension

Hypertension is one of the most common illnesses in the western world and it brings along a severe risk of heart attack, kidney disease, eye disease and strokes. Hypertension is the most common cause of strokes and blood clots in the brain. It is the blood pressure that decides how hard the heart needs to work, and pump the blood around in the body. The blood pressure is measured with many different devices, as the systolic and the diastolic, meaning when the heart is resting and when it’s working. The condition of the heart is approximated from these measurements. There are often no symptoms of hypertension but in some cases, may occur a slight headache and/or a flickering before the eyes. So, it might be a good idea to have your blood pressure measured on a regular basis. The heart can handle the increasing work for many years, but with time it will eventually fail. 

The diet

I now have a huge wish that, the food and drink would be prioritized substantially higher in the hospital. While I laid in intensive care, I received plenty of oxygen, so my mouth and throat were completely dry. I also got sores in my throat. I was fasting in case something might happen, which made perfect sense to me. As a former nurse I would like to offer an hours’ worth of free education in nursing, on how to handle patients with permanent oxygen masks. The loveliest nurse came, after my request, with a pack of wet gauze. It was like the most wonderful champagne. When I succeeded in drawing the attention of the nurses, by shouting, which by the way was quite difficult, they only brought a syringe of water, which hardly made the gauze wet.

During my young days as a nurse, we were always allowed to give the patient a small ice cube they could suck on.

When my fast was over, I was finally permitted to eat again, before leaving intensive care. I opened the two bowls, filled with joyful expectation. One of them was a gooey overcooked fish, and the other was a large bowl of curry rice without a single piece of meat. Even though I was hungry I just couldn’t eat anything. With dry humor, I convinced myself that it would probably be healthier to continue the fast. As a trained nutritionist I freely make myself available to whomever is in charge of the food budget. In my understanding, the food should provide you with nutrition to better your overall health. I assume hospitals exits to better people’s health, not to worsen it.

The manager of the section, a beautiful and empathic man, made sure that I was given a bed as quickly as possible.

I was transferred to a two-bed room. My neighbour was an amazingly friendly Andalusian woman, around the same age as me. Despite our large cultural differences, we quickly connected. There were no communication difficulties, because of the steady supply of oxygen, which I had available until shortly before I was released, my brain was working at maximum capacity, and I could remember all the Spanish verbs and words I hadn’t used in years.

I will never forget her. She was very concerned about my poor appetite. She thought the food was wonderful and proudly ate all of it. Happy and in a pleasant mood the whole time.

I had to get my coronary arteries examined and had to sign an agreement, stating that I was fully aware of the risks involved. My neighbour overheard it and quickly crocheted a bracelet for me, shaped like a rosary. Love without limits.

Recommendable diet

If you suffer from hypertension, then eat your food without adding additional salt. Many people pour salt on their food without even tasting it first. If you’re a coffee drinker, don’t make it too strong and reduce the number of daily cups.

Avoid foods with white sugar and sodas, even the artificial ones.

You will benefit from eating garlic and onions every day, they reduce the risk of heart attack and strokes.

Only consume small amounts of alcohol. You should consume a maximum of 1 – 2 glasses of wine and remember to drink plenty of water in between.

Vegetables are filled with antihypertensive dietary fibers, so eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.

Let nuts become a part of your daily diet.

Ease up on the dairy products and choose the low-fat ones.

Eat fish and cold fish cuts. Eat potatoes, wholegrain rice, and wholegrain pasta.

Quench your thirst with water and herbal teas.

Medication

Luckily the examination of my coronary arteries, showed that they were surprisingly healthy. Hence my doctor saw no reason to conduct further tests on my heart and blood pressure. I was administered quite a bit of medication, which I take with the utmost gratitude, even though I normally don’t consume any medications. I get a diuretic medication, betablockers that aids the heart’s work, and of course antihypertensive medication. I intend to take them, at least until my next control and then we will see what the cardiologist has to say.

I feel fine on the medication and I also take my normal daily dietary supplements.

Dietary supplements

  • It’s great to take certain herbal remedies in tea form, such as linden tree flowers, which expands the blood vessels and thereby lowers the blood pressure.
  • Dandelion works as a diuretic and lowers the amount of liquid in circulation, which in turn lowers your blood pressure.
  • Eat ginger daily.
  • Consume stevia, but it should be the entire plant, which also has blood pressure lowering qualities.
  • Take a vitamin-B supplement, which has all the different vitamin-Bs.
  • Make sure to get an extra magnesium supplement.
  • Supplement with quality omega-3 oils.
  • Get lecithin, possibly as a sunflower extract.
  • A Q10 of high quality must not be forgotten.
  • Garlic also lowers your blood pressure.
  • Hawthorn is one of my absolute favourites. I love the liquid hawthorn called Craetagisan. After the above-mentioned experience it has earned a new permanent spot on my night stand. It has been of great help to me earlier, when my heart was causing me trouble. It is an excellent remedy against weak heart muscles and hypertension. It’s completely safe.

I only have a slight idea of what might have caused my heart attack. It has been a teachable moment for me, and I will never again take life for granted. I have no private health insurance, but I’ve learned that the Spanish public healthcare system, functions amazingly in emergency situations. I have nothing but admiration for how the entire medical system worked.

The nurses were wonderfully compassionate and exact. You could trust their timing and medication.

The three days of bedrests, with catheter and plastic linen, were unfortunately enough for me to develop bedsores on my bum. I was bed bathed every day, which was very lovely, but a tiny bit of massage on my bottom, could’ve kept me from developing the sores. The girls seemed more interested in applying plenty of perfume on me. I’m a natural redhead, which means that my skin is quite delicate. Given that I’ve been a nurse, I would love to give them a small lesson on preventing decubitus ulcers (bedsores).

Atrial fibrillation

By Anni Dahms
Owner of the retail chain
ANNI’s VITAL SHOP.
Nurse- & Health specialist,
Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

 

Hjertefl
The article is also available in Spanish, Finnish, Danish

 

Atrial fibrillation is a rhythm disturbance in the heart’s atrium. The atrium is contracting faster than with a normal heart rhythm.
Atrial fibrillation can often cause blood clots in the brain.

In this time, I seem to be surrounded by people who complain about atrial fibrillation. I was wondering why this was the case, until I stumbled across an article, that described different kinds of heart attack and mentioned, that the attacks occur most frequently in the months October, November, and December.
You should obviously see a doctor if you are experiencing heart problems. There are many effective ways to help your heart today.
You can take many actions yourself, to ensure that your heart remains strong and functioning, even as you get older. The heart is an amazing pump, that starts working even before we are born, only to continue all throughout our life.
We only have one heart, so we should see it as a wonderful gift that we take care of, but often we don’t think much about it, until it starts to signal that it needs attention and appreciation for its hard work.
The stress many of us are experiencing these days, is our hearts worst enemy. It is as if stress leaves a contagious source in the air, which is difficult to get around, but we must be very conscious to deal with it, in the best manner possible.
The heart is a very delicate motor, that doesn’t benefit from suddenly getting pushed to its max performance, as it can damage it.
I felt it with myself, when I had to run for half an hour with a heavy suitcase, when my plane was delayed and had to get to the next flight (which I ended up missing anyways). It lasted for a while, the feeling that I should take extra care of my heart.


The symptoms of atrial fibrillation
They are most commonly abnormal heart rhythm, difficulty catching your breath, chest pain together with dizziness and fatigue.
It is usually people above 50 that are affected by atrial fibrillation, and more than 13.000 people are yearly hospitalized with the affliction in Denmark. It is estimated that roughly 75.000 people live with the illness. Studies have shown that roughly 10% of all people have atrial fibrillation. It is a common sickness that exists in numerous variations, some people experience it as rare attacks, while other people have it more or less all the time.
Atrial fibrillation is a rhythm disturbance in the heart’s atrium. The atrium is contracting faster than with a normal heart rhythm.
Visit your doctor, if you suddenly feel that your heart is running rampant, with an unusual fast heart rhythm. Atrial fibrillation can often cause blood clots in the brain.

The diet
The diet can perhaps not completely prevent atrial fibrillation, but it is certain that you can strengthen and keep your heart healthy through your diet.

If you have a large consumption of coffee and sugary treats, then cut down on them. Instead choose a high-quality green tea, you can also alternate between teas with nettle and ginger. Make sure to drink plenty of water of a high quality. Be careful with alcohol. The heart association discourages alcohol consumption completely. Too much alcohol can trigger symptoms connected with atrial fibrillation. Avoid fast-food such as burgers and hotdogs and exclude cake and fatty deserts. All in all, the combination of fat and sugar is a poor mix.
Eat lots of foods that contain plenty of antioxidants and focus on getting anti-inflammatory foods. Make sure, to the extend that it is possible, to eat ecological foods of a good quality.
Be careful with beef and animal innards and eat very little meat in general. Make sure that fish is on the menu at least two times a week. Be sparse with all kinds of dairy products, they help increase inflammation, which is often a part of having an irregular heart rhythm.
Eat plenty of vegetables and fruits. Apricots are strengthening for both heart and brain. You can eat dried apricots outside of the apricot season, but make sure that they are not treated with sulfur dioxide. It’s best to eat apricots after 3pm. Berries are good against atrial fibrillation. Your daily apple or two must not be forgotten. If you can get your hands on wild blueberries, optionally frozen, then use them in your daily diet. Another precious fruit is pineapple, which is also great for your green salads. Vegetables help flush out acid accumulations. Eat plenty of broccoli, cauliflower, red cabbage etc. Make sure that your vegetables also contain leafy greens, such as kale, spinach, chard, field lettuce etc. Let onions be a part of your daily diet and remember the healthy artichoke.
If you haven’t tried it before, then introduce sweet potatoes into your diet. They bring many benefits, one of which is the relief of heart palpitations.
Use plenty of garlic, turmeric, ginger, and olive oil in your daily diet. You should also consider coconut in its different forms, such as oil or coconut water.
Eat plenty of nuts and almonds.
Avoid wheat products, but instead use buckwheat, quinoa, millet, and wholegrain rice. The products come in many variants, such as flour or grain for porridge and pasta. You can find many wonderful recipes for bread using these ingredients on the internet. Anette Harbech Olesen has written many easy-to-follow cook/baking books that doesn’t use wheat, but instead utilises other exciting grains.


Dietary supplements

  • Start with a broad-spectrum vitamin/mineral product, which is of good quality and easily absorbable.
  • There should also be a good and likewise easily absorbable vitamin-B product as a part of your base. Optionally you could supplement with extra vitamin-B12, in spray form or as a tablet.
  • Take extra vitamin-C. 1 – 1½ grams daily. It is important with all cardiovascular disorders. It helps repair the blood vessels and prevents inflammatory changes that causes atrial fibrillation.
  • You can optionally supplement with vitamin-E, up to 350 mg daily. Some people prefer to get their vitamin-E through wheat germ oil.
  • Selenium, 100 – 200 mcg daily can also be a great help.
  • Magnesium can be recommended, preferably 600 mg in the evening. There must also be calcium present in your dietary supplements. If you are not taking a supplement of vitamin-B, then you have to supplement with B6, as it aids the absorption of magnesium in the body.
  • Q10 is recommended, in doses between 100 – 300 mg daily. Make sure to get a product that has a documented absorption rate.
  • Omega-3 is very important for the heart and counteracts heartrate disturbances. It can be taken as a fish oil, roughly 2 grams daily, or in the form of flaxseed oil, 1 table spoon daily. Omega-3 does also have a vegan edition which is made from algae.
  • Hawthorn comes both in liquid and capsule form. When I personally experience difficulties with my heart, then I always turn to this and have done so in many years. I feel it has a remarkable strengthening effect on my heart, but it might not be as effective against atrial fibrillation. It is a great remedy for high blood pressure.
  • Pycnogenol is bark from a French pine tree and it’s very effective at preventing blood clots and supports a good blood circulation. You should take 1 tablet in the morning. It is a powerful antioxidant, that protects the body from damages from oxygen radicals and thereby prevents inflammation.
  • Garlic is also preventive against blood clots.
  •  The amino acid Taurine counteracts potassium deficiency, and it has been shown to help some people with heart problems, by strengthening and making the contractions in the heart muscle more efficient. Taurine can be a great 3-step rocket, together with magnesium and B6.
  • The amino acid L-carnitine also works as a heart strengthener and is known to improve irregular heart rhythms.
  • If you are receiving any prescription heart medication, then you should always discuss the supplements you are planning to take, with your doctor. The doctor should, in my opinion, be able to provide guidance about what combination of the allopathic medicine goes together with the dietary supplements that so many heart patients wish to use. This is very important, and the allopathic medicine often is affected by different supplements.


Tips

  • Stay far away from tobacco. If you are a smoker, then reduce your tobacco consumption as quickly as you can muster without getting stressed.
  • It is important to avoid stress, especially the long-lasting stress can be very burdensome on the heart. If you drive a car, then practice patience.
  • If you are overweight, then make sure that you start losing weight in a sensible way, again without too much stress, you may be able to utilize a dietician. The hard part comes after you have reached your desired weight, namely that you must keep your weight stable. So, if you have used a dietician, then keep that connection, incase you might need it again.
  • Make sure to get exercise. It is important, if you want to have a healthy heart, that you are active, so blood is circulating properly. If you are having a cold or have just had one, or another infectious disease, then you must spare your heart. Avoid exercise until you are completely healthy. It is often a virus in the heart muscle. We usually function fine with it, but if the heart is strained during an infection, then it can act up, as it doesn’t like to get pressured in these situations.
  • You must be aware that sick teeth can have tremendous influence on your heart. Certain teeth have direct reflex pathways to the heart. It takes a professional dentist and doctor to guide you in this matter.

Louise Hay writes, the heart represents love and our blood represents joy. Our heart lovingly pumps joy through our body. If we deny ourselves joy and love, then our heart shrinks and gets cold, and that is when heart attacks happen.
Louse Hay also mentions, that the people who experience heart attacks are never happy people. To avoid more heart attacks, you must give yourself time to appreciate the joys in life.


Food poisoning

By  Anni Dahms Owner of the retail chain ANNI’s VITAL SHOP. Nurse- & Health specialist, Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

maveonde

The article is also available in Spanish, Finnish, Danish

During my recent summer vacation in Mexico, I got a terrible food poisoning. It was completely my own fault, as I totally chose to ignore my inner body voice. I had bought a bunch of bananas without top stalks, which were a bit overripe as well. My inner voice told me that I shouldn’t buy bananas without a top and that I certainly shouldn’t eat them if they were overripe. I said, “who cares, you don’t get sick from eating bananas”. However, they next day I quickly realized that you can indeed, get sick from bananas! I had a strong diarrhea, I was vomiting, had a high fever, and my entire body was hurting.

IMG_3213I didn’t have any probiotics, as I had given them to my lovely moto-taxi driver, whom have had diarrhea for two weeks. It is quite uncomfortable, to be driving around with two rolls of toilet paper, when you have been on the road all day. I had given them to him, because I normally have a good immune system and a strong stomach, thinking I would not need any myself. After my sickness had peeked, my friend came with a beer and told me that I should drink it in small sips. It would settle me a bit, as it was necessary to get some sugar and salt in the 35-degree heat. I sipped it slowly and felt that it was helping, even though I’m well aware that alcohol is diuretic. When my friend felt safe leaving me on my own, he drove to the nearest vegetable stand, bought a bunch of vegetables and asked them to slaughter a chicken, since his friend was sick. They quickly ran into the yard and found the finest chicken, which became pure medicine to me. It was boiled with all the vegetables for 3 hours, and then I was almost spoon-fed with the lovely soup. Whether it was the beer, the soup, or the love I was given, I have no way of knowing, perhaps a combination of the three, and I quickly started to regain my strength and could return to my daily doings. Even though the above-mentioned diet helped me, I would normally recommend a safer and milder one. Food poisoning flourishes, in my experience, often in September. “Migrating birds” from many countries return to their other home, here in Spain. The toilets on the planes are shared by all, and many new people meet, which hug and greet each other. The students in different schools are starting their everyday routines again, and here they meet and greet as well, with bacteria from many different places. Food poisoning can be caused by bacteria, virus, and other harmful substances. The symptoms often start a few hours after the consumption of the given food or other close contact with the infected, but it can take up to 24 hours before you really feel it, as it kicks in. The symptoms are often strong diarrhea, vomiting, pain in the stomach, and fever. The strongest symptoms usually disappear after 12 hours.

The diet

During a food poisoning, it’s good to try to cleanse your body, if you are, reasonably healthy. Otherwise, you should contact your doctor and get help that way. You should also contact your doctor if your condition is worsening, or if the duration seems longer than normal. When you can hold in water, then start with some boiled water, possibly with some apple- or lemon juice added, and/or a small amount of salt. We loose salt during the sickness and our bodies need salt to function. Start carefully when consuming liquids. Your stomach is very affected by the disease, so it can have difficulty taking in a lot of fluids in the beginning. If you feel that your mouth is extremely dry, then it can be a good idea to start sucking on home made safe ice cubes. A soup of oats, possibly sweetened with an unsweetened juice, is a good start to taking in foods again. It could also be a good idea to drink some carrot juice to support the liver. It can be a great help to eat grated apples, which is best eaten with a teaspoon. I don’t chemically know why it should be eaten with a teaspoon, but my earlier experiences have taught me that it works. A possible explanation is, that you eat the apple more slowly and chew it more. If you feel you are getting better, it might do you good to eat a piece of toasted bread, but it has to be without butter, or you could use some of the grated apple to put on top. Also a bit of boiled mashed potatoes will do you good. The mashed potatoes must be made with water, without any added butter. You can also choose to add some unsweetened yogurt, preferably ecological. Slightly paradoxically I also recommend a bit of banana, when your diarrhea has slowed down. Rice can help stop diarrhea, but I would never advise starting with it, except when dealing with babies, children, or weak persons. It is my opinion that you will benefit far more by really cleaning out your system, even though it can be quite tough on the stomach. This obviously only applies if you normally are strong and healthy. I usually say, that when you start to feel hungry, then you can probably endure eating. However, do be careful about meals that can be too heavy, or rich in substance. If you want some meat, then stick to chicken or turkey. You should also stay away from food that have been heavily seasoned for the first few days, even if you are otherwise feeling better. The spices can help the nausea persist.

Dietary supplements

The most important thing when strengthening your intestinal system and thereby helping your immune system, is to get a good lactic acid, also called probiotics. If you don’t know which the best for you is, get information about the different products in your local health food store.

  • It can be a good idea to supplement with Spirulina. Spirulina is a green algae, which comes both in tablet form or as a powder that you can mix into your smoothies. It contains both vitamins, minerals, and 60% of Spirulina is protein. Moreover, it’s rich in fiber and doesn’t contain fats. It cleanses your body of heavy metals and other toxins, so it’s often called a natural probiotic.
  • Chlorella, which is also a kind of algae, can be taken together with the Spirulina. That way you will get a proper elevation of your energy levels for your immune system and a unique super booster too.
  • Active charcoal can also be used to fight a poisoning, it is good at removing the toxins from the system. Preferably use active charcoal made from coconut shells. Just as a precaution I would like to mention, that active charcoal is not the same as regular charcoal, so stay away from the charcoal briquets from the BBQ!
    If you choose active charcoal, make sure that you drink plenty of water, at least 12 – 16 glasses a day. Active charcoal needs to be consumed a couple of hours before you eat or take other dietary supplements or medicine.
    When you buy active charcoal, you have to ensure that it doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners. You could perhaps add a bit of juice, if it just doesn’t go down in its natural form.
  • Matcha tea can also be a good idea, to support your immune system. It is filled with antioxidants and gives the body a healthy and natural source of energy.
  • A good vitamin-B supplement, which consists of all the different B vitamins, can help you gain energy and strength.
  • It can also be a good idea with a supplement of garlic, it is generally good for the immune system and works as an antibacterial.
  • Apple cider vinegar is good for the digestion. It helps you digest the food. It contains both vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. Mix a couple of teaspoons in a glass of water.

Tips

If possible, try to avoid food poisoning. You have to be very careful with meat and especially sausages, and you must be even more careful if you are visiting hot climate countries. When you eat fruit and vegetables, you must make sure that you clean them properly before eating. When I washed my vegetables in Mexico, I used bottled water, as I have no idea what could be in the tap water. If you go to a restaurant, ask them not to put ice cubes in your drinks. It is better to eat fruit you can peel such as oranges or bananas. Make sure that the bananas are sealed both at the top and the bottom, so you don’t make the same mistake that I did! Before you travel to a new country, make sure that you start taking a lactic acid bacterium one week prior to your arrival, and make sure you bring some extra in case something unforeseen happens. Don’t drink the water from the tap, but instead buy your drinking water. You should also use bottled water when you brush your teeth. Make sure that you clean your hands often and bring rubbing alcohol and/or wet wipes, keeping you hands clean goes a long way. Avoid dairy products, especially if you have just had diarrhea. It can be difficult for a while for the stomach to digest the milk sugars. If you like street food, then find those places that seem clean, and only eat the pieces that are burning hot. Bacteria doesn’t like high temperatures. It can be soups, fried food, or stews. If you air-travel, keep in mind that studies have shown that the small tray tables in front of you are filled with bacteria, so it might be a good idea to use one of your wet wipes to clean it before use. As H.C. Andersen said: “to travel is to live”. Don’t let your travels be controlled by fear. Make sure that you have great travel experiences often. This will also strengthen your immune system.

IMG_3104

Alcohol & Triglycerides

By Anni Dahms
Owner of the retail chain
ANNI’s VITAL SHOP.
Nurse- & Health specialist,  Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

EspañolEnglish * Suomi * Dansk


 

After all the holiday loveliness, everyday life has returned. For most of us, it is probably a good, to give our liver a much-needed break, because alcohol and triglycerides, along with a damaged liver, appears to be a world-wide problem.

PicMonkey Collage-110

The inspiration for this months’ article came when I visited one of the many restaurants on the peninsula Yucatan in Mexico. We picked a restaurant in Chuburna, because the small village was the one we stayed in during our first visit, a couple of years back.

The restaurant looked like all the others in the area: Large, with a clay tamped floor, and plastic tables and chairs set in a delightful random mixture of red and white.

We chose this one because, unlike the other restaurants, it was surrounded by a luxuriantly sea of flowers and lush plants.

PicMonkey Collage-111

We were the only customers, because we arrived outside of normal serving times. The food was absolutely wonderful. In my opinion, it could easily compete with any 5-star restaurant, in terms of presentation, as well as quality. Added to that, there was plenty of it. My guacamole, and my friends’ fishplate struck us all with awe. I called on the waiter—if you can even call him that, considering he was a young friendly-faced boy, wearing a pair of worn-out jeans and T-shirt, which had seen better days as well. I asked him: “Who on God’s green earth has prepared this lovely meal?”

He answered with a smile, telling me it was his mother who absolutely loved to cook, after which I asked to speak with her, of course. She appeared, all modest, and I told her how I truly enjoyed her food and admired her plants. In turn, she told me that taking care of her plants, and conjuring up wonderful meals for her customers, gave her the greatest pleasure.

This led to a long, pleasant talk, in which she expressed her curiosity about where such a red-haired woman like me originated from, and what I did for a living.

I told her about my life in Spain; that I’m a trained naturopath and owner of a small chain of businesses.

Afterward, she returned to her work, but came back shortly with pencil and paper in hand. She sat down at the end of our table and asked if I could help her.

“If I can, off course!” was my answer.

The problem: she had very poor liver numbers and heightened triglycerides, but she rather not take the medicine her doctor prescribed.

I guessed that I should probably stick to one product. In part due to their economic limitations, and partly because I didn’t think she was ready for more at the time. I recommended that she should take milk thistle in liquid form. She carefully wrote down how and when to take the product I suggested, gave me big hug and left us thankful and full of hope.

PicMonkey Collage-112

 

Triglycerides and Alcohol

It seems that even small doses of alcohol can contribute to heightened triglycerides.

Triglycerides are fats in the blood. Almost all fats have triglycerides in them. If the number of triglycerides in our blood is too high, there is a higher chance of cardiovascular diseases and strokes.

Higher levels of triglycerides are often caused by a liver that isn’t working properly. It can also be a symptom of diabetes – which our Mexican cook denied having.

Besides recommending that she take milk thistle, we also talked about diet and lifestyle.

She wasn’t overweight, and even though she stands and walks a lot in the kitchen, I recommended that she take walks along the ocean—which was just around the corner—and dip her feet in the water every day. Also, to completely exclude alcohol for at least three months. Next I suggested that she steer clear of cola, which is an especially praised drink among the Mexicans.

Clinical trials on mice have shown liver damage, after consuming cola for just four weeks.

I think the exclusion of cola, seemed more troublesome to her than the exclusion of alcohol. Instead, I recommended that she drink 7 – 8 glasses of water a day, of the best quality available.

I’ve noticed that all the people that I’ve met in Mexico, consume enormous quantities of sugar. And personally, I have noticed that I started to get sugar cravings due to the immense heat.

Be that as it may, I still asked her to leave sugar, sweet drinks and sugary foods behind, and only got her sugar from fresh fruits…and even those in a moderate amount.

Lastly, I advised that she avoid all forms of bread, be it normal bread, tacos, or tortilla, which is a large part of the everyday foods in Mexico. It is impossible to enter a restaurant without being served a bowl of tortilla.

Her man is a fisherman, so I asked her to eat as much fresh fish as she could.

She listened with much interest, but whether she has the willpower to follow my advice, only time will tell.

PicMonkey Collage-113

A good friend of mine told me that in Mexico, in the area where we were, there are three important days in the week: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Friday is a social day, where the men get together and drink “kaquama”, which are large bottles of beer that are passed around. If you don’t wish to drink, then you can’t take part in the social life, even if you just pay for the beer and sit there for company.

Saturday is sex day. Many Mexican men take lovers and even have kids outside of marriage.

Sunday is family day. This is a very important day to everyone. The entire family gets together and eats, maybe watch football, and enjoy each other’s company. They really care about their family days, which my friend and I noticed on a Sunday, where we wanted to buy a trip onto the flat waters to see the flamingos. We offered double the price, but despite the high levels of poverty, the answer was still no.

My friend prodded the man, quite provocatively, if he wouldn’t like to bring some extra money home to his family. The man answered: “yes, I would, but my wife won’t let me” (There was an important football match on the television that day).

I think it was a wonderful and thought-provoking experience that proved that not everything is for sale.

Dietary supplements that rejuvenate your liver

Obviously, you shouldn’t take all these dietary supplements at once. Instead, this is a selection of suggestions, which can help strengthen your liver individually.

  • Omega-3 fats, exists in many different forms both from fish, and now also in (vegetarian) seaweed. There is also plenty of omega-3 in linseed oil. Linseed oil can quickly turn rancid, so make sure to buy it in dark bottles, refrigerate it, and finish it reasonably fast. If the taste is harsh, then unfortunately, you must throw it out. Omega-3 oils are great for counteracting heightened triglycerides, and it also removes a lot of the cravings for sweets.
  • Vitamin-E counteracts the forming of fat cells.
  • Other noteworthy vitamins to treat the liver are all the vitamin-Bs including cholin. Cholin deficiency can result in the creation of fat deposits in the liver.
  • Lecithin, must not be overlooked, as the product can contribute to the removal of fat deposits in the liver.
  • It is good to take a daily dose of vitamin-C.
  • When it comes to minerals, then it’s especially important to take zinc and selenium.

PicMonkey Collage-114

  • Milk thistle takes the spotlight when we talk of herbal medicine and the liver. Silymarin is one of the components in milk thistle. It’s a heavily liver protecting compound, and can help reinvigorate a fatty liver.
  • Artichokes contain some specific fat-active elements, which support the liver- and bile system, and stimulates fat digestion.
  • Effective herbal medicine can also be dandelion. It is diuretic and holds a large amount of calcium, whilst also stimulating the liver- and bile system.

PicMonkey Collage-116

Tips

Alcoholism is one of our greatest problems all over the world, not just causing suffering for the alcoholics themselves, but also for their spouses, children, close relatives, families in general and even their friends.

I bought a newspaper in the nearby village of Chelem called “La Verdad”, which had an article about antidepressants, women and suicide. The article stated that 47% of women, which had been the victims of violence (often due to alcohol consumption), ended up buying antidepressants without a prescription, and that many of these women later committed suicide.

I discussed the article with my cleaning lady, who said it was true. She had a close friend who committed suicide after repeated abuse by her alcoholic husband. Said friend had also been taking antidepressants.

We hear the same sad tale when it comes to alcohol all over the world. Luckily, there are many great rehab clinics where you can get help.

Through the research I did concerning rehab possibilities, I found a beautiful prayer which is said to be used by many AA associations.

The prayer is called “The Serenity Prayer”.

Serenity means peace of mind, tranquility, and harmony.

As we are nearing the end of this article, I’d like to wish everyone a beautiful and merry new year, and recite this prayer, which I think we all, no matter age, gender, or challenges, can appreciate:

God grant me the serenity

to accept the things I cannot change;

courage to change the things I can;

and wisdom to know the difference.