I believe it's better to use mild remedies for minor health problems and save the more potent—and risky—prescription medications for more serious conditions. Here then, are my top 25 favorite healing herbs and their uses. All are safe and effective, but be sure to discuss any herbs you are taking with your doctor. Some herbal remedies (such as the antidepressant St. John's wort) can interact with medications.
Centers for Integrative and Complementary Medicine in New York is run by Dr. Dr. Fred Pescatore, who has worked along side Dr. Atkins. Dr. Pescatore treats patients with AIDS, diabetes, heart disease, hepatitis, and cancer—in addition to addressing more common concerns such as diet and nutrition—by employing a combination of both alternative and traditional medicines. 212-779-2944.
James R. Privitera, M.D. has an office in Covina. He treat arthritis, circulatory problems, preventive medicine, chronic fatigue, and PMS in addition to cancer. His approach is to use nutrition, immunological enhancement, chelation, and darkfield microscope. His website is http://www.nutriscreen.com/. Contact info: Phone: (626) 966-1618 or Toll Free: (888) 220-7888 or toll free: 800-5-PREVENT
A critical question is often asked: Why pursue the phenotypic reversion of malignancy? Surely it is better to look for more efficient methods of killing tumor cells? Tumors are remarkable creatures, possessed of manifold means to defeat the arsenal of therapeutics arrayed against them. Among other things, the genomic instability of tumors gives them a persistent evolutionary advantage, ensuring the survival of stronger, fitter, more aggressive cells that will go on to populate the body of their host. The approaches that have been taken show that it is possible to revert the malignant phenotype by the correction of environmental cues and by the normalization of signal transduction pathways even as the genome remains malignant and unstable. In this sense, the microenvironment can be dominant over the malignant genotype. It is of course preferable to eradicate the tumor altogether, but aggressive chemotherapy to eradicate a tumor often kills the host. The malleable nature of tumors would indicate that multiple approaches may be necessary. This raises the possibility of the long-term management of some cancers as a chronic condition in which the malignant potential of the tumor cells is constrained, perhaps for the lifetime of the patient.
Scientists don’t know for sure. Since chemotherapy and radiation kill cells that divide often, stem cells may be less vulnerable because they rarely divide. Some scientists believe cancer stem cells may have genetic mutations that make them resistant to damage from chemotherapy or radiation, or cancer stem cells may be able to repair DNA damage more rapidly than normal cells.
Generally garlic is safe when taken in a regular diet. There is a small risk that can occur however when eating large doses of garlic daily, taking more than 4 cloves per day can affect the bodies platelets hindering them from forming clots. You should reduce use of garlic around 2 weeks before having any type of surgery and if you're taking anticoagulant medications.
In a survey of American cancer patients, baby boomers were more likely to support complementary and alternative treatments than people from an older generation. White, female, college-educated patients who had been diagnosed more than a year ago were more likely than others to report a favorable impression of at least some complementary and alternative benefits.
Dr. Michael Uzik, ND. works with Arizona Naturopathic Physicians in Tucson AZ treats a wide range of conditions, including HIV, cancer, MS, chrones, etc. using nutritional IVs, mistletoe, ambrozile (oleander), copper reduction therapy for anti-angiogenesis, chelation, diet, herbs, heavy metal detox, etc. He is also an ND for Southern AZ AIDS Foundation. He only sees patients if they are under the care of an oncologist. 520-546-2321.
Mullein once again makes the list as an important herb to have in your herbal medicine chest. Mullein, also called lungwort, can be boiled to create a tea or respiratory tonic. Add honey to turn the tea into soothing cough syrup. Mullein is often used to reduce inflammation and may be used to help relieve symptoms of asthma or bronchitis. Be sure to consider mullein in your cough syrup mix.
Bilberry has been used for centuries by European healers to treat such things as stomach cramps, diarrhea and diabetes. Now bilberry is most often used to prevent night blindness. It seems to be able to strengthen the capillaries and protect them from free radical damage. This plant contains flavonoids called anthocyanosides. These are a powerful antioxidant. In the past, bilberry has also been used as a remedy for varicose veins, hemorrhoids and bruising.
Larrea tridentata Chaparral The leaves and twigs are used by Native Americans to make a herbal tea used for a variety of conditions, including arthritis, cancer and a number of others. Subsequent studies have been extremely variable, at best. Chaparral has also been shown to have high liver toxicity, and has led to kidney failure, and is not recommended for any use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or American Cancer Society.
Valerian is another great herb that's used as a sedative. Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) soothes anxiety and is often used as a sleep aid. Commonly doubled up with California poppy, it makes a powerful, but gentle sedative. Valerian can interact with medications and shouldn't be used without first checking with your doctor. Pregnant and lactating women shouldn't take valerian.
** Information on the traditional uses and properties of herbs are provided on this site is for educational use only, and is not intended as medical advice. Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Many traditional uses and properties of herbs have not been validated by the FDA. If you have any serious health concerns, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs. **
Laetrile, also called vitamin B17, is a synthesized version of the naturally occurring amygdalin. There were a number of doctors in the US who successfully treated cancer with Laetrile, but they were required to discontinue the practice, because they were using cancer treatments that were not approved by the US FDA. Some of these doctors moved to Mexico so that they could continue treating patients.
Iscador, also known as Mistletoe therapy (or Viscum album, Viscum album Loranthaceae, and European Mistletoe), is a proprietary formulation manufactured by Swiss medical company, Weleda. The use of mistletoe was pioneered by Rudolf Steiner, and was popularized in Europe, specifically Switzerland and Germany. Today, up to 60% of cancer patients in these European nations receive Iscador injections as part of their cancer treatment. The specialized therapy utilizes a purified mistletoe extract to kill cancer cells and simultaneously stimulate the immune system. One article from the Stram Center for Integrative Medicine notes:
Multiple scientific reports suggest that Iscador augments the immune response. Iscador has been shown to increase natural-killer cell function helping the body’s own surveillance system in attacking unwanted cancer cells. It also stimulates antibodies to cancer cells which helps recognize the cancer cells as foreign in order to destroy these cells.
Mistletoe therapy is the most frequently used complementary treatment in cancer patients in Germany and Switzerland. Iscador was first used for cancer therapy in 1922 by Rudolf Steiner and Ita Wegman based on anthroposophy. (Anthroposophical medicine views the occurrence of cancer, or any illness, as a disease that involves the whole human being, physically, mentally and emotionally.)
We live in a world where prescription medicine is getting more and more expensive as well as controversial. Alternative medicine is gaining momentum and with good reason! The same is true for treatments for diabetes type 2. You have therapies that can reverse diabetes through lifestyle and diet changes, natural supplements that can help stabilize blood sugar levels, and also herbs that lower blood sugar. Not only are these alternative therapies safer, but they are also easier on your pocket, on your body and mind.