Connect with us

Health

Baking Soda for Autoimmune Disorders

Published

on

In scientific circles, NaHCO3, or sodium bicarbonate, is a substance with the more common designation of baking soda. Known as a leavening agent in baking, you’ll find it in the cupboards of most households; in the kitchen, it allows batter and dough to form air bubbles and rise.

But a recent study1 shows that baking study does much more than that. The Journal of Immunology reports that in a clinical setting, baking soda also “stimulates splenic anti-inflammatory pathways” or, in layman’s terms, fights inflammation in the spleen.

From the outset, the study premise notes that chronic inflammation is a major factor in both acute and chronic kidney injury,2 and a number of small trials and experiments indicate that taking sodium bicarbonate supplements by mouth may slow the rate of degeneration in kidney function in patients with chronic kidney disease, or CKD.3

While the scientists weren’t sure which mechanism prompted the mediation, they went with the indications that if inflammation made CKD worse, baking soda might help reduce it. According to the researchers:

“Our data indicate that oral NaHCO3 activates a splenic anti-inflammatory pathway and provides evidence that the signals that mediate this response are transmitted to the spleen via a novel neuronal-like function of mesothelial cells …

In the current study, we used flow cytometry as well as mRNA markers in isolated splenic macrophages to determine whether oral NaHCO3 intake promotes M2 macrophage polarization in the kidney and spleen …

The first major finding of our study is that oral NaHCO3 promotes a powerful anti-inflammatory response including M1 to M2 macrophage polarization and increased FOXP3+ CD4+ T regulatory cells within the spleen. We confirmed that these phenotypic changes were associated with functional anti-inflammatory effects …”4

Medical Terms, Explanations and How Baking Soda Works

Medical News Today5 offers a short clarification to explain the foundation of the study: that baking soda provides a signal to mesothelial cells, which line your internal organs and other body cavities to prevent them from sticking or rubbing together.

Meanwhile, they assure these cells that your body is doing fine; it’s not under attack, so developing an aggressive immune system and/or a harmful autoimmune response are unnecessary responses. 

In addition, “Mesothelial cells communicate with the organs they line using small projections called microvilli, and the medium through which they send their message is the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.”6 Science Daily notes that when you drink baking soda, your spleen, which is part of the immune system and where some white blood cells are stored, essentially “acts like a big filter.”

“In the spleen, as well as the blood and kidneys, they found after drinking water with baking soda for two weeks, the population of immune cells called macrophages, shifted from primarily those that promote inflammation, called M1, to those that reduce it, called M2.

Macrophages, perhaps best known for their ability to consume garbage in the body like debris from injured or dead cells, are early arrivers to a call for an immune response.”7

The aforementioned macrophages refer to large, specialized cells in your immune system that form in response to an accumulation of dead cells or an infection. They “recognize,” target and wipe out such cells, acting in a way that helps explain how they got their name. The term macrophage is formed by combining the Greek terms “makro,” which means big, and “phagein,” meaning eat.8

A Daily Dose of Baking Soda

Paul O’Connor, a renal physiologist at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University (MCG), condenses the study’s findings with the comment that “Certainly drinking bicarbonate affects the spleen and we think it’s through the mesothelial cells.”9

One of the jobs kidneys perform involves balancing such vital compounds as sodium, acid and potassium, O’Connor maintains. One problem that crops up with kidney disease, besides diminished function, is excess acid in the blood, which often results in additional conditions such as heart disease.

O’Connor describes the mechanism as a system that’s basically set up for failure, but that baking soda emerges as a “cheap, over-the-counter antacid” that fights inflammation at the same time. The study involved healthy medical students at MCG’s Georgia Prevention Institute, who drank a bottle of water with baking soda added

The shift from inflammatory to an anti-inflammatory profile was widespread and plain to see, from the kidneys to the spleen to the peripheral blood, likely due to the increased levels of conversion from pro-inflammatory to anti-inflammatory cells, as well as outright productions of more anti-inflammatory macrophages. Science Daily adds:

“The scientists also saw a shift in other immune cell types, like more regulatory T cells, which generally drive down the immune response and help keep the immune system from attacking our own tissues. That anti-inflammatory shift was sustained for at least four hours in humans and three days in rats.”10

Citing the involvement of acetylcholine, O’Connor explains that the “cholinergic” signaling, again, is not from the vagal nerve in the spleen, but from the mesothelial cells forming the connections to it. Besides causing acidic ingredients like buttermilk and cocoa used in baked goods to expand the batter, baking soda has numerous other applications for health, cleaning and personal hygiene. 

Further studies are ongoing in other universities and clinical settings to observe how vagal nerve stimulation for seizures is similar to the way the vagal nerve is stimulated electronically to “tamp down” the immune response in individuals suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Incidentally, Science Daily notes:

“The spleen also got bigger with consuming baking soda, the scientists think because of the anti-inflammatory stimulus it produces. Infection also can increase spleen size and physicians often palpate the spleen when concerned about a big infection.”11

The featured study at MCG was performed first on rats, then on humans, involving the consumption of water with baking soda for two weeks. What the researchers found was a “triggered” response in their stomachs to manufacture the acid needed to help them digest their next meal.12

Your Spleen’s Natural Reaction When Baking Soda Is Applied

Earlier, mesothelial cells were described as functioning as buffers, as they create a slippery layer to protect cell walls from damage if they should rub together, a frequent cause of inflammation.

As O’Connor states, “You are not really turning anything off or on, you are just pushing it toward one side by giving an anti-inflammatory stimulus.”13 (In this case, Science Daily explains, away from harmful inflammation.)

The study participants were all healthy, but O’Connor says he hopes that someday, the same type of anti-inflammatory positive response will help people suffering from autoimmune disorders, and adds, “It’s potentially a really safe way to treat inflammatory disease.”

But of course, there’s nothing to prevent you from using baking soda, as it’s a natural substance used by people for centuries for a number of health conditions, and more.

History of Baking Soda and Other Uses for Health and Otherwise

Today, you’ll find baking soda not only in most household cupboards, but refrigerators because it has the ability to absorb odors. But before your average baker had baking soda to rely on to make cakes and breads light and airy, the primary agent used was yeast, according to University Health News:

“Prior to the 18th century, people had to spend between 12 and 24 hours making yeast — not an easy process without refrigerators and other equipment that we’re lucky to have today. It wasn’t uncommon for yeast not to turn out the way it was supposed to because the temperature was either too cold or too hot.

Sometimes, contamination from bacteria ruined the entire process. Baking soda revolutionized this process because bakers no longer had to do rigorous work in order for a cake to rise.”14

Something a generation of individuals from the 19th century had passed down was a concoction known as “vinegar punch,” made from apple cider vinegar mixed with a teaspoon of baking soda, which required a quick stir and a quick gulp. It was often used for gastrointestinal discomfort and usually elicited relief from pain, upset stomach, heartburn, acid reflux and even diarrhea.

But there’s more to the acidic environment that baking soda creates for improved health than an old wives’ tale. One study notes that because it helps raise your pH, it can ease urinary tract infections, or UTIs.15 In addition, because your circulatory system helps supply blood to your vital organs, baking soda can help detoxify your blood and help improve your blood flow.

You can add one-half teaspoon to half a glass of water (about 4 ounces), stir until it’s completely dissolved, and repeat no more than three times per day, and no more than 7 one-half teaspoons in any given 24-hour period.16

More Studies and Advice Regarding Baking Soda Solution Use

Another study17 notes that baking soda has been useful for runners and other athletes for decades, as the soda increases the buffer-like action of lactic acid. People who engage in intense exercise don’t experience the accumulation of lactate and subsequent muscle pain, which naturally results in better and more comfortable workouts.

It’s known that baking soda can stand up to Streptococcus mutans bacteria that can cause tooth decay.18 You can use it on your toothbrush to whiten your teeth, as well, which is less expensive than purchasing a toothpaste with baking soda in it.

Leaving it on for five minutes further whitens teeth, but should be followed by a vigorous rinse to avoid a gritty feeling; this method should be used no more frequently than once per week.

According to research at the University of California, if you notice you’re experiencing an irregular heartbeat, or if you’re taking thyroid medication, starting on a regimen that includes baking soda is not advised.19 If you notice itching, hives, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, stomach pain, headache or shortness of breath after using a baking soda solution orally, discontinue use.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Health

Group challenges ruling requiring doctors to give referrals for services that clash with beliefs

Published

on

By

Ontario doctors challenging a court ruling that found physicians must give referrals for medical services that clash with their moral or religious beliefs say there is no proof that removing that requirement would hamper patients seeking treatment.

A group of five doctors and three professional organizations is appealing a divisional court decision that upheld a policy issued by the province’s medical regulator, arguing the lower court made several errors.

The group, which includes the Christian Medical and Dental Society of Canada, the Canadian Federation of Catholic Physicians’ Societies and Canadian Physicians for Life, is asking Ontario’s highest court to strike down the policy. The case is set to be heard in Toronto on Monday and Tuesday.

Last year, the divisional court found that while the policy — which requires doctors who have a moral or religious objection to treatments such as assisted dying, contraception or abortions to refer patients to another doctor who can provide the service — does limit doctors’ religious freedom, the breach is justified.

The court said the benefits to the public outweigh the cost to doctors, who could delegate the referral to staff or choose to practise a specialty where such issues are less likely to arise.

In court documents filed ahead of Monday’s hearing, the group said the ruling was unreasonable because it gave more weight to an assumed problem with access to health care than to a real infringement of doctors’ rights.

“The (College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario) elected to provide no objective, quantifiable evidence that mandatory referrals actually result in enhanced access to care,” it said.

There was also “no objective evidence of actual harm either before the policies or in any other jurisdiction in Canada,” it said.

Some doctors will leave Ontario, group says

It further argued the court erred in finding that any violation of doctors’ rights stemmed from their decision to practise in an area where moral conflicts could emerge, saying that presumed physicians could easily switch jobs.

“A consequence of these policies is that a number of physicians will be required to either retrain (notwithstanding severe personal consequences and no guarantee of finding work) or else leave Ontario altogether,” the group said.

“Can a policy which takes physicians out of Ontario rationally relate to the promotion of equitable access to health care?”

The college, meanwhile, said in court documents that practising medicine is a privilege, not a right, and argued the policy aims to balance the moral beliefs of individual physicians while ensuring access to care, particularly for vulnerable patients.

“The appellants’ claim that any patient capable of contacting their physician is capable of finding a second treating physician is directly contrary to the evidence,” the regulator said.

“It ignores that vulnerable or frail patients may still be living at home, relying on family members for assistance…who may not support the patient’s choice. It ignores that care options may be more limited in remote or rural areas. It ignores that some patients with mental, emotional or linguistic challenges may be unable to advocate for themselves,” it said.

“And it ignores the very real feelings of judgment, shame and stigma that patients experience when their physicians fail to provide the individualized care a patient seeks.”

By comparison, it argued, the burden imposed on doctors through the policy is an administrative one, since the referral can be handled by other staff members.

“The appellants put forward no evidence of a sincere religious objection to working with administrative staff who might connect patients with non-objecting providers, or to working in a practice group which can triage patients,” the college said.

“More importantly, they put forward no evidence of the actual burden — financial, logistical or otherwise — of making such administrative changes.”

What’s more, it said, “the relative power and privilege of physicians as compared to the vulnerable patients they refuse to assist” should be considered.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

Health

5 ways to read more books this year

Published

on

By

How much time a day do you spend reading texts and alerts and notifications and emails and headline skims and flyby tickers and blog feeds and Twitter spews and Instagram comments? A lot? Me too. And that is truly garbage reading. Because what do you remember from it the next month or next year of your life?

We have to read more books. After all, books are still the greatest form of deep compressed knowledge on the planet.

Reading not only allows you to escape into an other world, studies show reading fiction can improve ones ability to empathize with others.
Reading not only allows you to escape into an other world, studies show reading fiction can improve ones ability to empathize with others.  (Dreamstime)

So how do you get more into your life?

Well, for the past two years I have shared three ways to read more books: centralize your books in your home, make a public commitment to read more and reapply the 10,000 steps rule. So, today I come back to you with five more! Because we all should read a little bit more. Let’s break it down:

5. Live inside a world of books. This involves a mindset change. Like most people, I have a bookshelf “over there.” That’s where the books live. Then, one day last year, my wife dumped a pile of about 10 picture books in the middle of our coffee table. What happened? Our kids started flipping through them all the time. So now we leave them there and just rotate the books. Path-of-least-resistance principle! Just like how Google leaves kale chips on the counter for employees while hiding the cookies in the cookie jars. We’ve put the TV in the basement, installed a bookshelf near our front door, slipped books into car seat pouches and, of course, placed one within reach of every toilet. (Want an epic toilet book? Try this.) Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges says: “I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books.”

4. Find a few trusted, curated lists. The publishing industry puts out around 1,000 new books a day. Do you have time to sift through all those? No, nobody does, so we use proxies like Amazon reviews. But should we get our reading lists from retailers? If you’re like me, and you love the “staff picks” wall in independent bookstores, there’s nothing as nice as getting one person’s favourite books. Finding a few trusted, curated lists can be as simple as opening an account at Goodreads or Reco or subscribing to Ryan Holiday’s email list, but with a bit of digging you can likely find the one that totally aligns with your tastes. Maybe you’ll like Bill Gates’s reading list or Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine Book Club or Ariel Bissett’s YouTube channel. I also run an online book club where I send out my recommendations once a month (sign up here), and host a podcast called 3 Books where I interview inspiring individuals and uncover their three most formative books in order to find the 1,000 most formative books in the world.

Read more:

Spring Preview: 20 books I can’t wait to read in 2019

Worried about that big to-read pile? Don’t! Matt Haig tells us why

Konmari or tsundoku? The unbearable lightness of getting rid of books

3. Change your mindset about quitting. It’s one thing to quit reading a book and feel bad about it. It’s another to quit a book and feel proud of it. All you have to do is change your mindset. Just say, “Phew! Now I’ve finally ditched this brick to make room for that gem I’m about to read next.” An article that can help enable this mindset is “The Tail End,” by Tim Urban, which paints a striking picture of how many books you have left to read in your lifetime. Once you fully digest that number, you’ll want to hack the vines away to reveal the oases ahead. I quit three or four books for every book I read to the end because I don’t see the point in reading a book you dislike. I do the “first five pages test” before I buy any book (checking for tone, pace and language) and then let myself off the hook if I need to stop halfway through.

2. Go red in bed. Yes, I’m talking about lighting up your bedroom like a bordello. Just go to MEC for a red-light camping headlight and strap it to your forehead like you’re in the jungles looking for the Predator. My wife, Leslie, generally falls asleep before I do and that’s when I strap my red reading light on my forehead and get my reading on. Why red? Michael Breus, PhD and author of The Power of When says “the theory is that red light aids melatonin production.” Melatonin is the hormone that regulates wakefulness. And bright lights have the opposite effect by decreasing our quality of sleep according to the Sleep Health Foundation of Australia.

1. Make your phone disgusting. The most popular articles I wrote for the Star last year were about cellphone addiction. It’s hurting us all. So what’s the solution? Make it disgusting. Put your phone in black and white. Move all the apps off the main screen so it’s blank when you open it. Leave your cracked screen cracked. Move your charger to the basement so it’s an extra step in your low resilience nighttime and morning moments. Enable Night Mode to automatically block calls and texts after 7 p.m. Slowly, slowly, slowly pry that cellphone out of your fingers.

So are you raring to go?

Or do you need some rock-solid science to give you a final push? Well, how about a 2011 study published in the Annual Review of Psychology that shows reading triggers our mirror neurons and opens up the parts of our brain responsible for developing empathy, compassion and understanding. This will make you a better leader, teacher, parent and sibling. Or another study from Science Magazine in 2013 that shows reading literary fiction helps improve empathy and social functioning. And, finally, a 2013 study at Emory University which shows MRIs taken the morning after test subjects were asked to read sections of a novel showed an increase in connectivity in the left temporal cortex. What’s that? The area of the brain associated with receptivity for language. The MRIs were done the next day. Just imagine the long-term benefits of cracking open a book every day.

Most of us want to read more books. And we can. Use these five ways to get started down the path. Let’s have a happy reading year together.

Neil Pasricha is the #1 bestselling author of six books including The Book of Awesome and The Happiness Equation. His research and writing focus on living intentionally. Join 35,000 other people to get his bi-weekly articles at www.neil.blog/newsletter

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

Health

Mother of 3-year-old killed by flu shares story, advocates for vaccine

Published

on

By

When Caylee Donovan took her three-year-old daughter Gracie to the hospital, worried her fever had lasted for five days, she was sent home.

“They just said keep her hydrated, keep trying to feed her and wait for the fever to break,” she said. “Basically they just ignored us.”

Weeks later, Gracie died.

It’s been 10 years since Donovan lost her daughter, but she wants to make her family’s story public so she can advocate for flu vaccines.

Gracie Donovan was just three years old when she died as a result of the flu virus. (Caylee Donovan)

Gracie was diagnosed with influenza after her mother took her back to the doctor repeatedly trying to get help. She was sent to the hospital in Nanaimo, where her family was living at the time, so she could be assessed by pediatricians.

One doctor told Donovan her child didn’t have the flu. She was just an angry child. But Donovan said it was because of the fever that she was acting unusually.

When another doctor decided to treat Gracie for the flu, she was relieved. But a couple of days later, Gracie’s condition worsened, and she was taken to a hospital in Victoria. It’s there that Donovan first learned her daughter might not make it.

“She was put on a ventilator that night and remained on it for 18 days,” Donovan said. “She fought it. They had 14 different medications in her little body.”

An abscess formed on Gracie’s lung, and between that and the other symptoms she was suffering from, she succumbed to the virus.

“It was hard on us, the family,” Donovan said.

“But she’s no longer suffering, and, now, I use her story and our family’s experience to advocate for having the flu vaccination.”

‘Things get misconstrued on the Internet’

Donovan wants other parents and people to understand the impact not vaccinating themselves or their children can have. Though her family had been vaccinated for influenza in years prior, they had not yet had the flu shot in 2009 when Gracie fell ill.

“Our family never really got sick. We were kind of that family that said this will never happen to us.”

She notices people asking for advice on Facebook and other social media forums and said her biggest piece of advice for others is to get their information about influenza and the flu shot from medical professionals, as opposed to the Internet.

“A lot of things get misconstrued on the Internet,” she said.

“It takes one person to say ‘there’s mercury in a vaccination.’ Society, these days, believes those stories and they take it to heart, and, then, they make decisions for their family that might not be in the best interests of their family.”

She hopes that by sharing her daughter’s story, people will take the virus more seriously.

“I would just like to see people educate themselves legitimately going to their health professionals, going to people who know the truth and can help you make the right decision for you. It may be to get a vaccine and it may be to not get the vaccine.”

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

Chat

Trending