Updated July 20013
COMMON CURES VI:
BACTERIA CONTRIBUTE TO HARDENING OF THE ARTERIES:
Dr. Emil Kozarov and a team of researchers at the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine have identified specific bacteria that may have a key role in vascular pathogenesis, specifically atherosclerosis, or what is commonly referred to as “hardening of the arteries” – the number one cause of death in the United States. The data suggests that a chronic infection may underlie the process of atherosclerosis, an infection that can be initiated by the systemic dissemination of bacteria though different “gates” in the vascular wall – as in the case of a septic patient, through intestinal infection.
Bacteria can gain access to the circulation through different avenues, and then penetrate the vascular walls where they can create secondary infections that have been shown to lead to atherosclerotic plaque formation, the researchers continued. “In order to test the idea that bacteria are involved in vascular pathogenesis, we must be able not only to detect bacterial DNA, but first of all to isolate the bacterial strains from the vascular wall from the patient,” Dr. Kozarov said.
One specific avenue of infection the researchers studied involved bacteria getting access to the circulatory system via internalization in white blood cells (phagocytes) designed to ingest harmful foreign particles. This can lead to multitude of problems for the patients and for the clinicians: failure of antibiotic treatment, vascular tissue colonization and initiation of an inflammatory process, or atherosclerosis, which ultimately can lead to heart attack or stroke.
• Contributing factors for stroke, heart attack and dementia are INFLAMMATIONS in the body through
1. food intolerances
2. dental problems
3. Bacterial infections
4. Sugar consumption, sugar being that most powerful inflammatory agent
NOTE: Research finds that daily doses of aspirin lower by 30% the incidence of heart attack, stroke, dementia – inflammation in general.
METABOLIC BENEFITS OF BIRCH BARK INGREDIENT: An ingredient found in abundance in birch bark appears to have an array of metabolic benefits, according to new studies in animals that are reported in the January issue of Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press publication. In mice, the compound known as Betulin lowered cholesterol, helped prevent diet-induced obesity and improved insulin sensitivity. Betulin-treated mice were also more resistant to developing atherosclerotic plaques in their arteries.
It also has an anti-viral effect, possibly helpful with the Herpes Virus and Epstein-Barr Virus. It is being tested with lowering Cholesterol.
LOOK MORE ATTRACTIVE WITHIN MONTHS: Eat Carotenoid-rich foods!
Carotenoids belong to a group of compounds that include alpha-carotene, beta-carotene and beta- cryptoxanthin. They are converted to vitamin A and are referred to as provitamin A carotenoids. Carotenoids are an important source of dietary vitamin A, and are mainly found in fruits and vegetables, such as:
Carots, Plums, Mangoes, Apricots, Cantaloupe, Sweet Potatoes, Kale, Spinach, Coriander/Cilantro, Collard Greens, Fresh Thyme, Turnip Greens, Winter Squash
NATURAL SLEEP REMEDIES: A few natural remedies may help when you can’t sleep
What’s your ploy for getting a decent night’s sleep? Doctors say it’s important to look at your lifestyle — whether too much caffeine, too little exercise, or too much late-night work or TV is the problem. If lifestyle changes aren’t enough, medications can help. Supplements may also have a place in providing a peaceful night’s sleep.
For advice on sleep supplements, WebMD turned to Sharon Plank, MD, an integrative medicine physician with the University of Pittsburgh Medical School Center for Integrative Medicine. We also spoke with Alon Avidan, MD, a sleep researcher and professor of neurology at UCLA School of Medicine.
Supplements for Natural Good Sleep
1) Most over-the-counter sleep aids contain antihistamine — and should only be taken short-term because they are not helpful for long-term sleep problems. NOTE: They also dry out the sinus passages and, during the cold, flu and bronchitis seasons, bacteria is attracted to this dry area. Use a humidifier or keep the nasal passages lubricated.
• Chamomile tea & Sleepy Time Tea
• Melatonin (very low dose so that you do not abruptly wake up when it is out of your system – less is better)
ATTENTION: Years ago, a nurse told me to drink warm milk before going to bed and this would help me sleep. This is a very old-fashioned remedy that really works but I rarely think of it.
CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME: I have written about this syndrome as being connected with the Epstein-Barr Virus and an under-active thyroid and stressed adrenals. Even a small dose of Armour Thyroid (30mgs) can dramatically improve this condition. Remember, blood tests are complete! You must get a HORMONE SALIVA TEST to determine adrenal/thyroid function. Even testing your own body temperature can show this better than a blood test. Many gynecologists can order these tests.
CFS & WEAK HEART MUSCLE: There is a new type of CFS, a syndrome whereby the body becomes fatigued into order to protect itself against a heart attack. Most heart tests, EKG etc, do not give correct information. Symptoms are basically the only clue to this condition – spikes in blood pressure, unable to build muscle through strength exercises, sensitivity to temperature, respiratory problems (breathing), and thyroid issues. Many doctors are now examining this new type of heart condition. There is a free book for downloading:
Very similar information can be obtained in the books by Dr. Stephen Sinatra. In his books, he makes supplement recommendations – D-Ribose, CoQ10, L-Carnitine and I will add Hawthorne Berry Extract and this extract builds heart muscle.
NOTE: I feel that this weakened heart condition is caused by an untreated underactive Adrenal/Thyroid condition. I have 4 friends with this condition and all have thyroid issues. One dear friend passed away from this untreated condition.
NEW COLD & FLU IMMUNE SUPPLEMENT: The US immune health segment has a new entrant, as Frutarom USA announces the launch of a standardized Pelargonium root extract, for use as a stand-alone or in more extensive immune health formulations. The extract, called EFLA956, is said to reduce the severity and duration of the common cold and associated symptoms, including sore throat, stuffy nose, cough and mucus build-up. The study also notes that the extract has been used against infectious diseases of the respiratory tract – conditions that affect adults between two and four times a year, and children up to 10 times per year. The extract is said to act in three ways: As an antimicrobial, antiviral and as a mediator of the body’s own immune-defense mechanisms. According to Frutarom, the ingredient is standardized on Umckalin, a constituent unique to Pelargonium sidoides. It can be formulated into syrups, softgels, OTC preparations and tablets, said the company, and it comes as a powder.
PLATLETTE INCREASE (due to radiation) – a personal testimonial: I was able to increase my levels by taking higher amounts of CHLOROPHYLL. There are many ways to get chlorophyll — by eating a lot of green leafy vegetables and high amounts of blue green algae. In addition, I ate a lot of papaya leaf juice. Two of my friends were admitted to the hospital last year and we helped out by making for them, fresh juices from papaya leaves. Papaya leaf is known to contain very high amounts of vitamins A, C, E, K, B Complex and especially high in B17 (laetrile, which is used for the treatment of cancer).
After taking the papaya leaf juice, my friend’s blood platelets count increased rapidly and they were out of the hospital within days. One of them reported their platelets count at a dangerous level of only 8 (normal count is 150 and above). One week after she was discharged, her platelets count shot up to above 300.
I was able to increase mine after having radiation from proton beam for melanoma eye cancer in six months to normal so it worked for me! My Traditional Doctor said that nothing could be done.
LITHIUM: Lithium, used to treat bipolar disorder, prevents the buildup of toxic proteins and cell loss associated with Parkinson’s disease, U.S. researchers say. Lead author Julie Andersen of the Buck Institute for Research on Aging says preclinical research is under way to determine correct dosages for the drug and the Buck Institute is working toward initiating Phase IIa clinical studies of lithium in humans in conjunction with standard Parkinson’s disease drug therapy.
“This is the first time lithium has been tested in an animal model of Parkinson’s disease,” Andersen says in a statement. “The fact that lithium’s safety profile in humans is well understood greatly reduces trial risk and lowers a significant hurdle to getting it into the clinic.”
“The possibility that lithium could be effective in Parkinson’s disease patients at subclinical levels is exciting, because it would avoid many side effects associated at the higher dose range,” Anderson says. “Overuse of lithium has been linked to hyperthyroidism and kidney toxicity.”
According to Edgar Cayce, Lithia Water (purchase from the Heritage Store in Virginia Beach VA) is helpful with depression. Others have commented that carrying Lepidolite (the mineral Lithium) around the neck or in their pocket is very helpful with some types of depression.
Here, we are seeing that research also connects this product with Parkinson’s Disease, as a remedy. Parkinson’s Disease is associated with the Frontal Lobe of the Brain.
N-ACETYLCYSTEINE & RESPIRATORY HEALTH: N-acetylcysteine is an antioxidant1 sold in supplement form. Also referred to as N-Acetyl Cysteine (or NAC), N-acetyl-cysteine is converted by the body into an amino acid called cysteine. In turn, cysteine helps produce glutathione, an antioxidant that plays a key role in regulating many cellular functions and helps keep the immune system2 in check. Proponents claim that taking N-acetylcysteine supplements can protect against a wide range of health problems. Additionally, some proponents claim that N-acetylcysteine can help prevent cancer.
• chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD)
• cystic fibrosis
• high cholesterol4
• HIV and AIDS
• Lou Gehrig’s disease
Health Benefits of N-Acetylcysteine
1) N-Acetylcysteine and Chronic Bronchitis
N-Acetylcysteine may help keep chronic bronchitis in check, according to a 2000 report in Clinical Therapeutics. Looking at data from eight clinical trials, the report’s authors found that long-term use of N-acetylcysteine may help prevent acute flare-ups of chronic bronchitis and, in turn, lower healthcare costs.
2) N-Acetylcysteine and Diabetes
N-Acetylcysteine may aid in diabetes5 management, suggests a 2006 study from the Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology. Involving 32 patients with type 2 diabetes and 15 healthy controls, the study found that three months of treatment with N-acetylcysteine helped regulate glutathione levels in diabetes patients. The study’s authors suggest that regulating glutathione levels may help protect against diabetic complications brought on by free radical-induced6 damage.
3) N-Acetylcysteine and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
N-Acetylcysteine may help treat polycystic ovary syndrome7 (PCOS), according to a 2007 study in the journal Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica. For one menstrual cycle, 573 PCOS patients were treated with clomiphene citrate (a drug commonly used to induce ovulation). Next, 470 of these patients took a combination of N-acetylcysteine and clomiphene citrate for another menstrual cycle. Study results revealed that ovulation rates improved significantly after the addition of N-acetylcysteine.
4) N-Acetylcysteine and Cystic Fibrosis
N-Acetylcysteine may have a slightly beneficial effect on lung function among people with cystic fibrosis, according to a 1999 report in Acta Paediatrica. Sizing up data from 23 studies, the report’s authors concluded that there is not enough evidence to support the use of N-Acetylcysteine in the treatment of cystic fibrosis. However, the report’s authors noted that long-term use of N-Acetylcysteine may lead to some improvement in lung function for cystic fibrosis patients.
5) N-Acetylcysteine and COPD
In patients with stable, moderate-to-severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), N-acetylcysteine may help improve physical performance. For a 2009 study published in the journal Chest, 24 COPD patients took either N-acetylcysteine or a placebo8 daily for six weeks. After taking a two-break (in order to eliminate N-acetylcysteine from the bodies of participants in the treatment group), the study participants were switched over to the alternate therapy for an additional six weeks. Study results indicated that N-acetylcysteine helped improve several markers of respiratory health, such as lung capacity and exercise endurance.
Important Side Effects: N-Acetylcysteine may trigger a number of side effects, including nausea, diarrhea9 and vomiting. What’s more, N-acetylcysteine can increase your levels of homocysteine (an amino acid linked to heart disease10). If you’re taking N-acetylcysteine, it’s important to get your homocysteine levels checked on a regular basis. In addition, N-acetylcysteine may interact with several drugs (including certain blood pressure medications, medicines that suppress the immune system, cancer drugs and medications that treat chest pain).
Should You Use N-Acetylcysteine? Although N-acetylcysteine may offer certain health benefits, self-treating a chronic health problem with N-acetylcysteine supplements may have serious health consequences. If you’re considering taking N-acetylcysteine, talk to your doctor before starting your supplement regimen.
HEPATITIS C: Hepatitis C is an insidious viral disease because most people are unaware of their initial infection. Instead, the acute phase usually passes with minimal symptoms before turning into chronic hepatitis C infection. Many people have the disease for decades before it is diagnosed. Often people are diagnosed with chronic hepatitis C as a result of blood work performed for other medical conditions.
Chronic hepatitis C is dangerous because the virus causes high levels of free radicals to form in the liver. These free radicals put serious oxidative stress on the liver, which depletes protective antioxidants in the liver and eventually kills the liver cells. The disease is characterized by periods of fluctuating liver damage, with flare-ups of acute hepatitis over the course of the infection. Over time, this steady attack on the liver causes scar tissue (fibrosis), which can lead to cirrhosis if left untreated. The following supplements have been shown to reduce liver oxidative damage, lower iron, and boost the effectiveness of conventional drugs:
• Calcium citrate—1000 to 2000 milligrams (mg) daily with iron-containing foods to block iron absorption
• Lactoferrin—900 mg daily, to block iron, in divided doses
• Lipoic acid—750 mg in three divided doses daily
• NAC—600 mg daily
• Whey protein isolate—20 to 40 grams (g) daily
• Glutathione—500 mg daily, on an empty stomach
• Silibinin extract—900 mg daily, in two divided doses
• SAMe—1200 mg daily, in three divided doses
• PPC—1800 to 3600 mg daily
• Green tea extract (93 percent polyphenols)—750 mg daily
• Garlic (high allicin)—900 mg daily
• Aged garlic extract (Kyolic®)—1200 mg daily
• Selenium—200 to 600 micrograms (mcg) daily
• Vitamin E—400 international units (IU) daily with at least 200 mg gamma tocopherol
• Vitamin C—2000 mg daily (on an empty stomach to minimize the increased iron absorption)
NOTE: This information comes from the Life Extension Foundation. In their research, it has been found that Omega-3, Selenium and SAMe prevent Liver Cancer and the growth of these cells.
EDGAR CAYCE & THE CASTOR OIL PACKS: These were often recommended for cysts, to detox the liver and to stimulate the lymphatic system. Information can be obtained from this link: http://home.earthlink.net/~jimrharris/tecr.html
RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS–SCLERODERMA–SKIN DISEASES: There is a famous Alternative Medical doctor in Bethesda MD. For such diseases, he strongly recommends Food Elimination Diet. His diet is brown rice and vegetables. There are other Food Elimination Diets. For me, it takes 2 weeks for the symptoms to improve. Here are other links for similar diets:
• firstname.lastname@example.org (this outline of reactive foods can be found on my Medical Forum)
CHOLESTEROL LOWERING SUPPLEMENTS THAT WORK:
Milk Thistle – repairs and detoxifies the liver; Red Yeast Rice – cleans cholesterol out; Omega-3 – lubricates arteries
NATURAL CURES FOR PHOBIAS, ANXIETY DISORDERS & PANIC ATTACKS:
Dr. Jamison Starbuck listed her recommendations. I am very familiar with these techniques, I am amazed that a doctor recommends these, and I highly endorse what she says –
• EMDR Technique – Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing, a mental reprocessing of a phobia reinforced by eye movements. This is done by a health professional. It is the “mother” of the tapping technique known as EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique. I had a friend with severe agoraphobia and she was completely cured of this life-long disorder within 6 weeks.
• GABA – this is a supplement which can be purchased at most health food stores. It calms the brain and gives a sense of well-being while maintaining mental alertness. It is not absorbed well as a pill. Buy it as an under-the-tongue supplement. Take 200 mgs 3 times a day. GABA is also a remedy for the Drama Queen Dysfunction – Drama Queens have too little GABA and too much Dopamine.
• RESCUE REMEDY – This is a Bach Flower essence that can also be purchased at health food stores. It even works on stressed animals. Take 4 drops under the tongue 15 minutes before starting a fear-inducing event. Repeat every 15 minutes.
• Strength Training and Aerobic Exercise – Becoming physically strong helps the individual to become mentally strong and these give a sense of control in the life.
Regular or constant heartburn is a common symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Symptoms of GERD include:
• Chest pain, especially while lying down at night
• Sour taste in the mouth
• Coughing, wheezing, hoarseness, chronic sore throat
• Regurgitation of food or liquid
With GERD, the acidic contents of the stomach flows back into your esophagus, which can irritate the delicate lining of the esophagus and cause pain.
Natural Remedies for Heartburn
1) Diet – Avoid heartburn triggers —
Keeping a food diary may help you identify problem foods. Foods and drinks that commonly trigger heartburn include:
• Citrus fruits
• Raw onions
• Black pepper
• Fatty foods
• Spicy foods
• Citrus juice
• Carbonated beverages
• Alcoholic beverages
Don’t go to bed after eating.
Eat your last meal at least two to three hours before lying down.
Eat smaller portion sizes.
Take time to eat.
Try practicing mindfulness while eating. Eliminate all distractions and savor, rather than inhale, your food. Pay full attention to what the food looks like on your plate, how it smells, how it tastes. Chew slowly.
2) Stress Reduction
A survey by the National Heartburn Alliance revealed that 58 percent of frequent heartburn sufferers identify a hectic lifestyle as a factor that contributes to their heartburn and 52 percent say work-related stress makes their symptoms worse.
Although some people report that stress makes their heartburn symptoms worse, scientists haven’t yet established a direct link between heartburn and stress. We do know that stress can disrupt our normal routines and make us do things, like eat the wrong foods, smoke, drink coffee or alcohol, that may trigger heartburn. Stress also slows down the emptying of the stomach, which may increase the likelihood of heartburn.
Here are some natural methods that may help to manage stress:
• Mindfulness Meditation
• Relaxation Response
• Natural Remedies for Anxiety
3) Chewable DGL — DGL (deglycyrrhizinated licorice) is a folk remedy used for heartburn. It is a form of the herb licorice that has had the glycyrrhizin component removed to reduce the risk of glycyrrhizin-related side effects such as high blood pressure and water retention. Although some research suggests licorice may decrease inflammation, inhibit the growth of potentially harmful stomach bacteria, and help with ulcers, there haven’t been any clinical trials on the use of licorice for heartburn or GERD.
5) Aloe Vera Juice — The juice from the aloe vera plant is another natural home remedy that is used to soothe an irritated esophagus. Although there isn’t any scientific evidence that it might help, aloe vera juice has a long history of use in Europe as a natural home remedy to relive heartburn. Typically, approximately 1/4 cup of aloe vera juice is taken (by adults) approximately 20 minutes before a meal.
The aloe vera should not contain any aloe latex, aloin, or aloe-emoin compounds, substances in the aloe plant that are very powerful laxatives. Aloe gel should not be taken directly from the plant as a home remedy, as the gel can be contaminated with the latex. Only gel or juice preparations specifically for internal use should be used. For more information about aloe vera, read the Aloe Vera Fact Sheet.
6) Slippery Elm — Slippery elm was once a popular drugstore remedy for sore throats in North America. The herb was listed in the United States Pharmacopeia, a compendium of drug standards, until 1960. The inner bark contains mucilage, a gel-like substance that swells when it is mixed with water. The mucilage is thought to coat the esophagus and reduce irritation.
7) Marshmallow — Like slippery elm, the herb marshmallow (Althaea officinalis) contains mucilage, which is thought to coat and soothe the lining of the esophagus. It is another folk remedy that is used for heartburn. Herbalists often recommend marshmallow root tea. It is usually made by adding one tablespoon of the dried root to a cup (8 oz.) of boiling water, steeping it covered for at least 10 minutes, and then straining. Herbalists usually suggest drinking up to three cups a day.
Other Natural Remedies
• Food allergy avoidance
NOTE FROM LYNN: Periodically, I may have acid reflux when I lay down at night. GERDS is caused by a lack of Enzymes that force the stomach to produce more acid. I do take a multi-enzymatic from Life Extension but Solaray has a good supplement as well. Taking all of the above is unreasonable. When I have Reflux, I drink a glass of warm water and then a “swallow” of Edgar Cayce Formula 636 (The Heritage Store in Virginia Beach or BAAR Company). While this is a tonic, it is also a digestive aid as well. It seems to work for me. Please avoid anti-acids as this prevents the absorption of important nutrients and this can lead to Age-Related Macular Degeneration.
GERDS OR ACID REFLUX can contribute to asthma. An ENT can make this diagnosis. Chronic sore throat is often caused by Acid Reflex (see article above).
EAR INFECTIONS: Use ear drops, such as Gaia’s Ear Oil. Warm bottle in hands and place two to five drops in the infected ear, then place a cotton ball in the ear to prevent the oil leaking out. Your child may smell like garlic, but the ear oil is soothing and the garlic has antibacterial properties. If after 3 days your child still has the ear infection, take go back to the doctor.
CHOLESTEROL & KILLING THE SUPER BUGS: Vitamin B3 or (use Non-Flushing type) Niacin. Check out the website link — http://www.naturalnews.com/vitamin_B3.html
ADHD: A new study shows slight mercury exposure during pregnancy could be linked to a higher risk of ADHD-related behaviors. This study, led by Susan Korrick, MD, MPH, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), and Sharon Sagiv, PhD, MPH, of Boston University School of Public Health, is published in the online version of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, and shows that fish consumption for pregnant women can also decrease the risk of ADHD-related behaviors in children. This twofold possibility can occur because several types of fish have low levels of mercury, allowing pregnant women to consume fish without being exposed to a large amount of mercury. Previous studies have even indicated that the benefits of prenatal fish consumption outweigh the risks.
HEAVY METAL DETOX from Dr. Mercola:
Astaxanthin, which I’ve previously written about at great length, is one of the best performers when it comes to protecting your ENTIRE cell from damage, and as such, it can be an important ingredient to help optimize your detoxification system as a whole. Dr. Shade agrees, stating:
“You got the cytosol, or cytoplasm, that’s water-soluble. Then you got the membranes that are fat-soluble. You need to take care of both the water side and the fat side. I think astaxanthin would be a great thing to incorporate into the systems.”
Another commonly used detoxification tool is chlorella, which will help detoxify your system via your gut. Chlorella is a binder, meaning that it binds to the heavy metals present in your gut, which serves two important functions as it:
1. Prevents absorption and/or re-absorption (many metals can be excreted into your bile and then be re-absorbed), and
2. Prevents the metals from irritating your intestines by holding them away from the epithelia of your intestinal wall. This helps prevent inflammation
NUTRITIONAL THERAPY FOR HEALTHY NAILS:
Natural remedies for nail treatment are up against the same obstacles as prescription agents: it is difficult to deliver healing agents to the site of infection. However, a few nutrients stand out for their ability to support strong, healthy nails.
SILICON: Silicon is an essential trace mineral that is vital to healthy bones and skin. It helps facilitate the formation of collagen, which is necessary for strength and healthy development of epithelial and skeletal connective tissue. In a recent study, silicon was examined for its ability to improve skin and nail health in women with sun-damaged skin. Chronic exposure to sunlight has been shown to damage connective tissue, which causes loss of elasticity in skin. In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, women were given 10 mg daily of either a bioavailable silicon or placebo. Measurements of skin and nail health were taken throughout the study. At the end of 20 weeks, women taking silicon had decreased skin roughness and less-brittle nails and hair, showing that silicon had a significantly positive effect on nails, skin, and hair (Barel 2005). This study used a stabilized orthosilicic acid, which is the form of silicon with the greatest bioavailability.
VITAMIN E: The results of several small studies show that vitamin E can be effective in the treatment of nail changes in yellow nail syndrome, which also has profound effects on heart and lung function that must be treated separately (Williams 1991). A few studies found that high doses (800 to 1200 IU daily for several months) were effective in some patients (Rommel 1985; Venencie 1984; Ayres 1973); another study focused on topical vitamin E used twice daily for 12 months, which also provided noticeable results (Williams 1991). ATTENTION: Take a MIXED TOCOPHEROL, not D-Alpha!
BIOTIN: In one study, supplementation with the B-complex vitamin biotin increased nail thickness by 25 percent in 63 percent of participants with brittle nails. Nearly all patients had improved hardness and firmness after taking 2.5 mg biotin daily for an average of 5.5 months (Floersheim 1989). In another study, researchers reported that patients taking biotin daily for three to six months experienced a significant decrease in brittleness and splitting (Hochman 1993). Increased nail thickness was evident after biotin supplementation in yet another study, in which progress was identified using scanning electron microscopy (Colombo 1990).
PROTEIN: Protein, consisting of amino acids chains, is a building material for new nails. Researchers have found an association between protein deficiency and nail abnormalities such as Muehrcke’s lines (ie, paired, white, transverse lines that appear on the nail plate). Muehrcke’s lines appeared in individuals with low blood protein levels (ie, albumin level less than 2 grams per dL [20 grams per L]), but when protein levels were normalized, the white bands disappeared (Fawcett 2004). Protein from sources that provide a variety of amino acids have also been shown in studies to increase the health and strength of the nail plate (Cashman 2010).
IRON: Iron-deficiency anemia, which affects 20 percent of women and 50 percent of pregnant women, can cause brittle nails if it becomes severe. A blood test should be used to diagnose iron-deficiency anemia in people with brittle nails. Supplemental iron should be taken under the supervision of a physician.
ZINC: Zinc deficiency has been associated with poor nail health, manifesting as deformed nails, hangnails, inflamed cuticles, and white spots in the nail plate. A few small studies have shown that supplementation with oral zinc can help resolve nail abnormalities in yellow nail syndrome (Hausmann 1994; Arroyo 1993).
L-CYSTEINE L-cysteine is a conditionally essential amino acid, one of only three sulfur-containing amino acids. The others are taurine (which can be produced from L-cysteine) and L-methionine, from which L-cysteine can be produced in the body by a multistep process. L-cysteine is an important component of keratin, hair, and nails.
ATTENTION: In 2013, my hairdresser told me not to return until I saw a medical doctor about my hair that was thinning and breaking off. I went to a gynecologist as I knew that this is often a thyroid problem. I am currently on a course of Armour Thyroid (not from India or China) and Bio-Identical hormones from a local compounding pharmacy (Village Green Apothecary in Bethesda Maryland).
I am also taking Silicon from Germany, pure Silica by Body Essential. The doctor told me to take Biotin but I have been taking Vitamin Shoppe’s Liquid Vitamin B Complex (taken under the tongue) after drinking my morning coffee. Coffee destroys some of the B Vitamins. I understand that it can take 6-8 months before the hair improves.