Beta Carotene and Smoking

Recent studies have shown that smoking and taking Beta Carotene supplements do not go together. Beta Carotene is an antioxidant, which means that it inactivates free radicals in the body. In the process it oxidizes and can become a kind of pro-oxidant or form oxidized by-products. Normally we don't have to worry about the by-products of Beta Carotene's antioxidant behavior. If you maintain a healthy diet with a variety of antioxidants they will work in combination to protect one another from oxidizing.

It appears that smokers on the other hand do have something to worry about. Two studies ending in the nineties found that people who smoked at least one pack a day or drank higher than average amounts of alcohol and took Beta Carotene or Vitamin A supplements were at a higher risk for developing lung cancer and a higher risk of dying. Each of these trials showed that Beta Carotene wasn't helping many of its smoking participants and was in fact hurting some of them. The first trial called The Alpha-Tocopheral, Beta Carotene Cancer Prevention Trial showed eighteen percent more lung cancer and eight percent more deaths in male smokers who took 20mg of Beta Carotene. The second trial called the Beta Carotene and Retinol Efficacy Trial (CARET) initial results showed that there was twenty eight percent more lung cancer in the group of smokers and former smokers it had taking Beta Carotene and Vitamin A and seventeen percent more deaths. These results were so similar to the Cancer Prevention Trial final results that they told the participants to stop taking the supplements before the trial was scheduled to end.

Why is this so? Well, since it's thought that anti-oxidants protect each other from oxidizing scientists suspect that smokers don't have enough of the other types of antioxidant vitamins in their systems to prevent this from occurring. It has been found that smokers have low levels of Vitamin C in their blood stream-and that's' one of the antioxidants. So the Beta Carotene oxidizes in the body after it uses up its antioxidant properties an in effect becomes a free radical damaging or exacerbating damage done to the cells of smokers lungs which leads to abnormal cell growth and cancer. With low levels of other kinds of antioxidants in their bodies there's nothing to stop it. Scientists believe that the two antioxidants that work together to protect the body from Beta Carotene pro oxidant damage are Vitamins E and C.

If you are a smoker you should by no means try to avoid Beta Carotene or Vitamin A in your diet. These trials seem to show that all anti-oxidants work together to prevent cancer and isolating one or the other for consumption, especially in a non-natural form, simply negates its effects and sometimes causes problems. What you should be doing is focusing on eating a lot of foods with antioxidants in combination. There is no evidence as of current that suggests eating foods with Beta Carotene in them can increase the risk of cancer in smokers.

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Author Vincent Platania represents the Stanley Home Products. Stanley Home Products has been in business since 1936, and offers high quality home and personal care products to keep your home and your body clean. Visit http://www.stanley-home-products.com

Vitamin E deficiency

A deficiency of vitamin E is rare in humans. Vitamin E is present in many of the foods we eat on a daily basis, Wheat, Sunflower seeds, Hazelnuts, Soybean oil (Soy is present in just about every packaged product on the market), Broccoli and etc. Though studies indicate we don't get the full recommended daily intake of vitamin E, which is twenty-two and a half international units. Since these studies came out many people began to worry that they weren't getting enough of the vitamin and began taking mega doses of vitamin E. While in some cases its certainly true that people need supplementation, such as pregnant or lactating women its not entirely necessary for the general population. Vitamin E deficiency has never been proven in a healthy human. It's been shown in other species and in those with medical conditions that limit the body's ability to absorb Vitamin E. It may be possible to develop a deficiency if you maintain a very strict and limited low fat diet for a period of time, but other vitamin deficiencies will show up as well. A deficiency can occur in people with an inability to absorb fat, because some fat is needed in the digestive tract for the absorption of vitamin E. Someone with a genetic abnormality in their alpha-tocopherol transfer protein will have a deficiency of vitamin E. Lastly premature babies will be deficient in the vitamin or low birth weight babies because of a poor vitamin E transfer from the mother via the placenta to the baby or in the case of preemies simply a lack of time to transfer the vitamin. A vitamin E deficiency also seems to be connected to Zinc deficiencies. The body may use zinc in absorbing or making use of vitamin E or the diet could be lacking in multiple vitamins and nutrients. Other conditions that can result in a vitamin deficiency are various intestinal disorders. Those suffering from Crohn's disease often experience diarrhea and subsequent inability to absorb vitamins. If you lack the ability to secrete bile you may need a special form of water soluble vitamin E since bile helps with the absorption of fats in the digestive tract. Some symptoms of vitamin E deficiency are sometimes nerve degenerations in the hands and feet, muscle weakness, eventual blindness. In infants you may notice irritability and edema. While adults can develop anemia, which is a lack of red blood cells, so you may notice fatigue, weakness, and paleness. The problem with vitamin E deficiency is that anyone who develops it will likely have a disease that is the underlying cause, such as Crohn's disease or gallbladder problems. So before diagnosing yourself as having a vitamin E deficiency you should get to a doctor and have them take a look at you for a proper diagnosis. In many cases treatment of the disease will naturally stop the symptoms. Visit http://www.stanley-home-products.com

Author Vincent Platania represents the Stanley Home Products. Stanley Home Products has been in business since 1936, and offers high quality home and personal care products to keep your home and your body clean. Visit http://www.stanley-home-products.com

Vitamin C Supplements Found To Aid In A Variety Of Ailments

Its common these days to see people buying up vitamin C tabs, pills, and chewables at the beginning of cold and flu season. While some swear by the immune system boosting properties some still question whether these supplements really help. There are many studies that definitively show Vitamin C is needed by the body for production of collagen and without it you will eventually die of scurvy. Other studies have found benefits of the vitamin in other areas, making use of its antioxidant properties. While some claim the vitamin can be used in high doses to cure the common cold or lessen the degree and severity of illnesses. First off Vitamin C has been studied as an aid in fighting cancer. One exciting, but preliminary study was performed on live cancer cells in a test tube environment. Scientists administered infusions of Vitamin C to a set of nine cancer cell cultures and four normal cell cultures. The cancer cells had a fifty percent decrease in survival rate, while the normal cells appeared to be unaffected. The vitamin C appeared to kill cancer cells in a laboratory environment. While this is promising it should be noted that this is not a study that was performed in humans and many things can be promising in the laboratory but some things just don't work out in the real world trials. Diabetics may be interested to know that Vitamin C is being studied as a way to increase the body's receptiveness to insulin. The disease is partly characterized by the blood vessels inability to respond Nitric Oxide (NO) which is secreted by the walls of the blood vessel and encourage the muscles to relax increasing blood flow to the areas of the body. The vessel walls don't relax and thus contribute to the body's insulin resistance. It's been confirmed that injections of vitamin C have been shown to improve vessel wall reaction to NO in diabetic patients. The new study is going to observe the effectiveness of oral vitamin C in Diabetic patients. There were many, many studies performed to try and determine whether vitamin C can indeed prevent the common cold. In the seventies there were a series of trial run by a team headed by a Dr. Terrence Anderson at the University of Toronto. His studies found the same results as many other studies, that vitamin C though necessary in the body doesn't prevent the common cold. It does seem to lessen the length of time you have a cold by half a day on average and there is no need to take really high doses to achieve this. It appears that you can get the same effect as a very high dosage of vitamin C in a higher than usual dosage of 250mg during a cold when the cold ends you should return to the recommended daily value of 60mg. Visit http://www.stanleybeautycare.com

Author Vincent Platania represents the Stanley Beauty Products. Stanley Beauty Products has been in business since 1936, and offers high quality home and personal care products to keep your home and your body clean. Visit http://www.stanleybeautycare.com

Summer Health Tips

So the summer has finally arrived… The time of BBQ’s, lounging in the park with friends and unfortunately for some, the itchy, puffy, swollen eyes, runny nose and scratchy throat that are all associated with hayfever. How can you help yourself to get through this trying time? We asked CNM Naturopath Debbie Cotton to give some advice…

Inhaled and ingested irritants can add together to create that lovely hay-fever effect in the body. The mucous production that your nose and eyes creates is only to protect the body from a perceived threat. So in turn the body is only doing its job, buts its being a bit hyper vigilant about it. The trick is to find out why.

One of the biggest tools that we have as Naturopaths in reducing and alleviating hay-fever is looking at diet. Removing irritants from someone’s diet takes a lot of stress off the body, and it slows down the hyper immune reaction. Wheat and diary are often highly implicated for being irritants to the mucosal membranes in the gut wall, which in turn affects the mucous membranes in the nose and eyes, but every person is different so you may need to find out what food is slightly irritant to you. Once you have worked out what it is in the diet that is affecting you, try removing it for a while to give your body a break and see the difference. To do this you may want to see a Naturopathic Nutritionist to tailor a diet for your needs.

Probiotics (acidophilus and bifidus) have been shown to reduce the immune response in the gut wall by mediating certain inflammatory pathways and chemical messenger release in the body. Taking a course of probiotics in a good dose range may help to get the immune reaction down.

The contingent nutrients Rutin and Quercertin along with Vitamin C have been shown to have a regulatory effect on inflammation and histamine release. Supplementing with these may also help to alleviate some of the nasty symptoms associated with hay-fever, and regulate the immune and inflammatory response.

There are many herbs that can help minimise the immune reaction of hay-fever, but it is always best to get a herb prescribed for your specific needs. Homeopathic remedies also often have great results in clearing up hay-fever. There are many complexes available at health food stores, but these sometimes might be a bit ‘hit and miss’ in their actions, as they are not formulated for you personally.

Alleviating some of the symptoms of hay-fever this summer may still be possible if you get on top of it now. Otherwise, start a plan now with the long term goal of having a hay-fever free summer next year!


Allergic rhinitis is absolutely no fun. There is nothing good about the congestion, the fatigue, the sneezing fits, runny nose, sinus infections, asthma, or general misery that allergies bring into our lives. For some it is a seasonal problem, but for many it is year round. Pollen, grass, dust and animal dander cause inflammation in the lining of the nose that affects our eyes, our sinuses, and our lungs. Worse yet, this misery affects more than our physical health.

The financial impact of allergies is worse than the discomfort. Two billion dollars is spent on allergy care each year in the United States. Medications, doctor visits, allergy tests, shots, and lost work make up the bulk of this cost. Much of the financial burden falls on the patient and these dollars add up. Medications alone are not cheap: OTC meds can cost at least $300 a year, and prescription meds average $1200 a year. We are literally paying through the nose for allergy care.

There is an effective way to cut down on these numbers. It is a simple but increasingly well-known technique called nasal washing. Not nasal sprays, which can actually send sniffed particles up further into the nose, but nasal washing - to flush out the irritants from the lining of the nose. And when you wash the nose with the right solution, it acts as a natural decongestant – opening the nasal passages and allowing you to breathe without a drug.

Doesn’t this make sense? The nose is the primary filter for all the air we breathe. Impurities are caught in the little hairs inside the nose. If allowed to stay there these impurities cause a runny nose, itchy eyes and congestion commonly known as ‘allergic rhinitis’. But if the nose is washed clear of these irritants, we are much less likely to suffer with allergies.

I have spent the past 20 years teaching my patients how to wash comfortably and safely. I have seen that successful nasal washing depends on good technique, which is easy if you use the right system. It helps to have a well-designed wash bottle and it is essential to mix the solution properly. Nasal wash kits are available in many stores but after trying several different systems (including the ‘neti pot’), I realized we needed something better: Dr. Hana’s Nasopure Nasal Wash System. As a pediatrician, I designed the patented user-friendly bottle to be convenient and safe for children as well as their parents. This non-breakable travel friendly bottle is designed for use in the shower, there are premixed packets for mixing exactly the right solution, and each kit comes with full instructions. Nasopure is the most effective, convenient, and economical system available today. With Nasopure and a little practice, daily washing can become a pleasurable habit.

By washing the nose regularly, we could save thousands of dollars in health care costs. Allergy medications alone can cost an average of $50 a month. By rinsing the problem particles out of the nose, many people find they have no need for any medication at all! That’s a savings of $600 a year and a whopping $6,000 over ten years. And this is not even counting the cost of doctor visits or medications needed for asthma, ear or sinus infections, sinus surgery – common problems caused by allergies.

Nasal washing has no significant side effects. It sweetens the breath, improves our ability to smell sweet flowers, and gives us an overall sense of well being. Why didn’t we think of this a long time ago? If you are spending more than you like on allergy care, and want to feel better without side effects, visit www.nasopure.com to read about nasal washing.

Less money spent and no side effects - a win/win solution to a persistent and costly problem. Your nose and your wallet will both benefit.

Quotes from a Nasopurist:

“I had my first treatment after dinner last evening and for the first time in a long time I awoke without a dry and scratchy throat. I estimate my savings on Kleenex will allow me to buy a new car.”

One month later:
“My breathing is better and congestion much less. It is now a part of my daily hygiene. Some of my Kleenex boxes are getting cob webs.”

One month later:
“I'm waiting for the new fall models to buy my new car. Nasopure is continuing to do a good job for all of us. I use it twice a day without fail. Yesterday I was glad I still had a box of Kleenex by my chair in the family room because my shoes needed cleaning.”

How to Relief with Allergies ?

What are Allergies?
An allergies is an abnormal reaction to ordinarily harmless substance or substances. These sensitizing substances, called allergens, may be inhaled, swallowed or come into contact with the skin.Substances that cause allergic reactions, such as certain foods, dust, plant pollen, or medicines, are known as allergens.
What are the Symptoms of Allergies ?
An allergy is actually a malfunction of the immune system, which attacks invaders or antibodies.Allergic reactions can be mild, like a runny nose, or they can be severe, like difficulty breathing.Allergic asthma caused by allergens such as mites and pollens, and stinging insect allergy.Allergic reaction to something that is breathed into the lungs in a person who is susceptible.
What Medications to Treat Allergies?
Medications such as pills or nasal sprays are often used to treat allergies.Many effective medications are available to treat common allergies. AANGAMIK DMG:
AANGAMIK DMG is the only pure DMG product that contains no fillers or binders and is therefore pure and non-allergenic.
Allercetin Allergy & Sinus
Allercetin is a Bio-Aligned Formula that utilizes natural homeopathic remedies for the treatment of allergies.
Allergiemittel AllerAide
Allergiemittel AllerAide temporarily relieves minor allergic symptoms such as sneezing, itching, runny nose, watery eyes, eczema, wheezing, and shortness of breath caused by allergies.
How to care with Allergies?
1.Wear a mask whenever dusting or mowing a lawn Stop smoking.
2.Keep family pets out of certain rooms, like your bedroom, and bathe them if necessary.
3.Avoid using aspirin, which has been reported to allow food allergens to be more effectively absorbed by the body.
4.Remove carpets or rugs from your room.Install an air-purification system at home.
More Detail About Allergies Relief