In this edition I look at some recent research on the herbal medicine front for:
Turmeric and stomach bacteria
Super mushrooms for Alzheimer's disease
New CSIRO dietary recommendations.
And for massage:
The damage done to your neck from longterm texting, computer work or your profession and how massage can help.
New Uses for Turmeric ( Cucurmin)
This yellow powder that we use in cooking, particularly Indian cooking has a host of very valuable uses, notable for reducing arthritic pain. It reduces joint swelling and inflammatioin associated with arthritis.
Now recent research has shown that it significantly decreased Helicobacter pylori counts in the stomach, as well as gastric inflammation. This bacteria can be the cause of gastritis, stomch ulcers and stomach cancer. On the immune front it also increased anti-inflammatory factors and H. pylori anti bodies. All in all a very useful herb. I have practitioner strength Cucurmin in the clinic.
Super Mushrooms for Alzheimer's Disease
You may have seen these brown Reishi mushrooms in the fruitshop. Well they have been found to increase brain plasticity, treduce amyloid plaques and lengthen the life of neurones.
Another medicinal mjushroom the Cordyceps mushroom improved memory, protected the brain from damage by reducing inflammation and supporting neuronal .
So well worth eating these mushrooms or buying a bottle of the extract to improve your ageing brain.
Did you know you need to eat more than your 5 serves of veg and 2 of fruit a day?
Well, it seems in a recent CSIRO report that 4 out of 5 Australians are not meeting the current recommendation of 5 serves of vegetables and 2 of fruit a day to reduce disease risk. And in a recent worldwide analysis it was found that greater benefits were obtained by eating double this amount. That is a whopping 10 serves a day of fruit and vegetables! This reduced the risk of stroke by 33%, a 31% reduction in premature death, a 28% reduction in cardioivascular disease and a 14% reduction in cancer. Well worth doing. Note: A serve of vegetables is 1/2 cup of cooked vegetables and a serve of fruit is one cup of diced fruit or a piece of fruit depending on size.
Do you have a turtle neck, texting neck or swan neck?
And I am not talking about fashion! It is much more painful than fashion.
You may have seen the texting posture, Shoulders forward, neck forward and a very curved upper back. You may even be a culprit of this yourself.
Mind you, you can get this type of posture on the computer, driving long distance or from other occupations such as floor tiling,plumbing, some health professions. Also from pastimes such as needle craft, knitting or quilting.
Try this simple test out at home. Have someone else look at you side on in the mirror. Imagine a plumb line going through the centre of your ear , shoulder and hip. If the ear is in front of the imaginary line then you have forward head posture.
Your neck is designed to remain vertical, supporting the weight of your skull in a perfect line from the top of your head, through your body to your feet. Your head and brain weigh roughly 4.5-5kg. If your head is constantly pulled forward, the weight of your head pulls on your neck and shoulders, causing long term tissue damage and also puts pressure on your spine.
Look at these stats. Every 2.5cm your neck is forward of its natural position, adds another 4.5kg of stress on the neck, shoulders and spine. That is why you can develop a large bump on one of your neck vertebrae. The body has reacted to build up bone and fatty tissue to protect the neck!
The forward head posture can cause much more serious health problems down the track, such as:
Permanent damage to your joints, muscles, ligaments and nerves
Headaches and migraines
Pain in your neck, shoulders and back
Poor sleep and insomnia
Fatigue and loss of energy
So, how can I help?
I look at posture
Various massage techniques to work the muscle groups
Exercises to stretch muscles and strengthen them
And overall, if possible do not have your neck in one position for long periods. Give it a break every 30 mins, it deserves it..
Quote of the Quarter
'At any moment I could start being a better person, but which moment should I choose?'
Ashleigh Brilliant - Potshots No 1521
If you would like to buy any Turmeric or mushroom supplements please give me as call on 02 9436 0306 or 0424 719 246.
Enjoy your skiing this Winter/ Spring or definitely some warmer Spring weather round the corner and I will write again closer to Xmas.
Massage Therapist and Herbalist