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Archive for General Knowledge – Page 3

Flower Essences: Cerato

We have all been there:  a decision needs to be made so we analyze, research, ask for advice or maybe use our “gut feeling”.  But what if that decision has been made and we begin to fret about if it was the right one. We question ourselves: “Did I do the right thing?” or “How will this decision affect the ones I love?”

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And on and on the questions roll until we begin to feel the pain of tumultuous anxiety.  Then anxiety lends itself to physical symptoms such as upset stomach, tension headache, and even more serious conditions such as hypertension.  While it is certainly prudent to do research and ask questions when needing to make decisions, always doubting the decisions and one’s own ability to make a “correct decision” is a pattern of thinking that can be destructive. This is where Flower Essences can be extremely helpful.

Mechthild Scheffer, Author of The Encyclopedia of Bach Flower Therapy” wrote: …. Bach Flower Therapy helps us to deal more constructively with the negative behavior patterns of human nature such as jealousy, impatience, inability to say no, timidity, and inappropriate guilt—patterns that are seen, by Dr. Bach as well as many others, as a deeper cause of physical illness.

Dr. Bach wrote: …Our Souls (the still small voice, God’s own voice) speak to us through our intuition, our instinct’s, our desires, our ideals, our ordinary likes and dislikes in whichever way it is easiest for us individually to hear: All true knowledge comes only from within ourselves in silent communication with our Souls …

Dr. Bach believed that we all can hear and trust the voice of God in making decisions for our life.  We can trust the intuitive in our decision making.  But many of us find ourselves questioning our ability to make a correct decision.

Dr. Bach developed the Cerato flower essence for such cases as “those who have not sufficient confidence in themselves to make their own decisions.  They constantly seek advice from others and are often misguided.”

The key symptom for needing Cerato is a lack of confidence in your own intuition.

  • Distrusting your own judgement
  • Constantly asking for advice from others
  • Give too much weight to other’s opinion.
  • Seeking confirmation.

Cerato, a flowering plant found native in the Himalayas, reaches about 2 feet in height.  It does not grow wild in Western countries but is cultivated in gardens.  In Bach Flower Therapy it is known as The Intuition Flower—moving from negative thought patterns of indecisiveness to inner certainty. It can be found as a single flower essence or in formulas designed to help with uncertainty and excessive fear. 

Using Cerato can help people begin to trust their own inner judgement or “gut feeling”.  As a person learns to form their own opinion and make decisions for themselves, their self – confidence will begin to flourish. 

Flower Essences are safe and can be used with children and pets, too. Four to ten drops can be placed under the tongue up to three times a day.  It can also be added to water for both humans and pets to drink.

Here at The Health Patch, we are happy to help you find the Flower Essence for you.

Health and Blessings,

Kim Anderson, ND

Simples: Ginger

Remember our moms reaching for the Ginger Ale when we were not feeling our best or feeling particularly nauseated?  While the sugar in the commercial drink was not the best option, Mom knew best when it came to the ginger part.

Most of us are familiar with Ginger and the culinary possibilities this herb spice offers–its pungent flavor adding flair to our recipes; But the flavor is not the only benefit of this flowering plant.  There are many medicinal properties in Ginger as well. 

Originating from Asia, this plant was brought to American in the 15th and 16th centuries through the Spanish.  It is now cultivated in tropical regions of the United States.  It is a flowering plant, but only the rhizome, or underground part of the stem, is used for medicinal purposes.  Being in the same family as turmeric, it carries similar health benefits:

Anti-inflammatory

One of the main bioactive compounds in ginger is gingerol and is responsible for the smell, flavor, and health benefits in the plant.  Like its sister plant, turmeric, ginger is especially useful in cases of inflammatory diseases such as arthritis and colitis.  A study in 2011 found that a combination of ginger, cinnamon, and sesame oil applied topically helped reduce pain and stiffness in people with Osteoarthritis.  Ingesting ginger as a tea or in capsules enhances this effect by lowering systemic inflammation.

Antioxidant

Antioxidants are molecules in the body that fight free radicals.  Free radicals are compounds that are constantly being formed in the body.  They serve a positive function that is important to health such as helping immune cells fight infection. 

However, if levels of free radicals become too high, they can lead to a state of oxidative stress.  Oxidative stress has been connected to health issues such as heart disease and cancer.  Oxidative stress also increases the aging process and, along with inflammation, is one of the key causes of Alzheimer’s disease. Gingerol in ginger has been found to have antioxidant properties—those important properties that help keep oxidative stress in check.

Antibacterial

Ginger can also help lower the risk of bacterial infections, with a special affinity against oral bacteria linked to gum diseases.  Small intestinal bowel overgrowth or SIBO is another condition that ginger can be used as an alternative.

Antinausea

Ginger is highly effective for taming nausea.  Studies have shown ginger to be effective against nausea connected to motion sickness without the drowsiness that can occur when using over the counter medications; making it a safer option when needed for traveling.  Studies have also been shown that ginger may help with morning sickness.   While ginger is safe, as with any supplement use during pregnancy, always check with a qualified practitioner before use. 

Antacid

As of November 2019, 60 million Americans were believed to suffer from indigestion, causing recurrent pain and discomfort.  Many pharmaceuticals prescribed for chronic indigestion have now been found to cause certain cancers. 

Certainly not a desirable side effect when trying to alleviate discomfort.  Ginger is a natural alternative in relieving indigestion.  It is believed that one key trait of indigestion is a slower emptying of the stomach.  Ginger enhances digestion, by increasing digestive secretion.  By enhancing digestion, it is possible that the stomach empties sooner, reducing indigestion. 

Anti-Aggregation

Platelet aggregation is the clumping together of blood platelets that can create blood clots or thrombosis.  Blood clots can be life-threatening.  Gingerol in ginger has been known to help prevent platelet aggregation and increase blood circulation.  It has also been known to help support the heart and pumping action.

With so many medicinal properties and delicious flavor, it is easy to see why so many natural health practitioners consider ginger to be one of the best spices to have on hand.  Here at The HealthPatch, we carry ginger teas, capsules, and bulk ginger in crystals and powder.  We are happy to help you find the best for you.

How about a healthy Ginger Ale?  Here is a recipe from  Katrin Nurnberger of Sugar-Free Londoner using a sugar alternative, making it a healthier option.

Sugar Free Homemade Ginger Ale (makes 2 cups)

Ingredients 6 cm of ginger root peeled and grated Juice of ½ of a lemon 1 TBSP of powdered sweetener like Lakanto Monk fruit 2 cups of carbonated water

Instructions Peel and grate the ginger.  Place it in a muslin or cheesecloth and squeeze until you have around 1 tablespoon of liquid ginger juice. In a jug, mix ginger juice, lemon juice and carbonated water. Stir in sweetener to taste. 

Enjoy the taste and health benefits!

Health And Blessings,

Kim Anderson, ND

Healthy Body Systems: Intestinal System – Colon

If we consider that the Intestinal System is actually a major component of the Digestive System since its function is to “consume” the nutrients found in the food we eat and deliver them to the bloodstream for delivery to the rest of the body, then the Large Intestine, which we call the Colon, actually carry out the water reclamation and waste disposal function of the body.

The colon is also called the large intestine, begins in the lower right part of the abdomen, and is divided into four parts: the ascending colon which travels up the right side of the abdomen, the transverse colon that runs across the abdomen, the descending colon that travels down the left side of the abdomen, and the sigmoid colon that curves to align the colon with the rectum to allow waste to leave the body.

The colon removes water, salt, and some nutrients from the stool and has muscles that line the colon’s walls, squeezing its contents along. Like a balloon, as this muscle is overfilled and evacuated for some time, it begins to “dimple”. These dimples are called diverticula and are pockets where foreign mater can collect, become inflamed, and cause disease. Therefore, regular bowel movements are necessary; ideally, you should have a bowel movement about 45 minutes after each meal.

To keep your bowel healthy, you need fiber, water, and regular bowel movements. There are two types of fiber that are necessary – soluble and insoluble.

I call the soluble fiber “sponges”.  They wipe down the colon walls, absorb toxins, and help remove liquid waste.  We refer to herbs that perform these actions as mucilage – herbs like slippery elm, glucomannan, and marshmallow.

The insoluble fiber I call “brooms”. This type of fiber “sweeps” heavier waste and scrubs colon walls to remove the more solid waste material from the colon as the muscle linings move all the waste along. Herbs that help perform these functions generally contain more cellulose/structure, like acacia, psyllium, and cascara sagrada.

A healthy colon will also have billions of probiotics (friendly bacteria) lining its walls, living in a healthy balance with the body.

As for a healthy colon diet:

  • Increase your fiber intake. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Consider apples, pears, raspberries, bananas, oranges, and cooked peas, corn, broccoli, and artichoke. Add whole grains and legumes: Consider whole wheat flour, barley, quinoa, wild rice, oatmeal, and beans.
  • limit red meat consumption. Try to stay under 100 grams of red meat, and under 50 grams of processed meats.
  • keep sugar intake at a minimum because of its inflammatory potential.
  • control your weight

Last year our blogs covered the topic of cleansing for each body system. I would reiterate here that an annual bowel/colon detox could be helpful in keeping the colon functioning well. (Refer to last year’s colon cleansing blog.)

Colon issues can be very uncomfortable, and also very deadly. Keep it healthy.  Add “intestinal” to your list of Healthy Body Systems!

–  Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the Owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030, and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

How to Prepare Non-Perishable Foods

When I introduced this topic to a couple of my friends, they remarked “ALL food is perishable.” And ultimately, they are right. Food is organic, and all organic things ultimately decay – whether we’re talking about food, plants, animals, anything with life in it. But the amount of time before perishing certainly varies. A person may live to be only a few years old or may live to be a century old. Likewise, leaves compost much more quickly than tree limbs though they come from the same root source.

So here we are discovering how to prepare and stock foods to last for longer periods of time. The times vary, as do the processes. But we all know that without the constant supplies of a grocery, fresh, ready-to-eat foods generally just aren’t available. Let’s look at some ways to make the foods we CAN obtain last longer than the few days fresh veggies and fruits may give us. We’ll discuss ways to obtain the foods in the next several blogs. Here we’ll look at how to keep them once we get them.

When I was a kid, we had a root cellar. Many fruits and veggies will keep for several months in such a cellar. It was simply a hole in the ground with concrete walls and a concrete floor, and it was covered with a wood or tin roof. You may have a storm cellar built much like this and that makes it a great root cellar too. My folks stored their ample potato crop under our house which rested on concrete posts! It was regularly my job to crawl under the house to answer mom’s call, “Randy, go get us some potatoes.”

Six feet below ground usually keeps a temperature of around 65-degrees – not unlike a refrigerator. So, things you keep in a refrigerator work well here. Now, putting a big box of apples, or pears, in this environment requires that the fruits don’t touch each other since one spot of mold spreads quickly. But if you layer the fruits in straw so that they don’t touch, you’ll keep a lot more apples. Other foods easily kept this way are potatoes, turnips, onions, beets, cool-weather greens such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts and cabbage, carrots, leeks and parsnips, and winter radishes. Winter squash, garlic, and sweet potatoes are great additions, too. If the cellar has lower humidity, you can also store dried beans.

For longer storage or products that don’t lend themselves to a cellar, try fermenting. Cabbages make kraut. It ferments when shred and sprinkled with salt. Cucumbers are chopped or sliced and added to a saltwater brine to make pickles. Both ways have a brine and create an environment where beneficial bacteria can grow. Other foods that fit one or both of these methods are carrots, beets, green beans, garlic, and many peppers. These foods may be put in a cool place and kept for many months.

For many years, folks have been canning their excess summer foods. My mom was an expert at it. But in my childhood, most families canned summer produce to enjoy all year long. Some foods were precooked and put in jars, which were then put in a boiler pan and brought to a boil to remove excess air. Then when they cooled, we heard the “pop” of the lids as the seals seated and kept the contents edible for years! I delighted in eating my mom’s homemade vegetable soup for a decade after it was canned. If you’ve never canned, there are a number of great teaching books with exact instructions and aged comments on techniques and ideas. Just practice. You’ll love it next winter!

A simple dehydrator is another tool for long-term storage preparation. Removing the moisture from the foods and then putting them in jars with a desiccant to draw out the oxygen that causes them to spoil is an easy process and can be accomplished with a simple electric dehydrator, placing trays over a wood stove, or even placing the foods on screens or a pan in the hot sun – we’ve all tasted sun-dried tomatoes, right?

And since freezing saves more nutrients than simple drying. Most families in years past had a home freezer chock-full of nutritious family favorites. I’ve recently looked at a unit you can purchase for your home that performs “home freeze-drying”. It freezes to below 50-degrees removes the moisture and works for all foods: garden-fresh fruits and vegetables, eggs, meats, and completer meals. You then just put the foods removed from the machine, put them in jars, add the desiccant, and seal the jars. They claim this process will keep your food nutritious and flavorful for up to 25 years.

Among the four things in Proverbs 30:24-28 that Solomon said were small but extremely wise, he mentioned “ants are not a strong people, yet they store up their food in the summer” so they would have food later. And by storing up your own food, you control the quality and the nourishment of the foods you select. Protect your family’s food supply so you may keep them healthy!

  • Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the Owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030, and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

Emotional Balance: What are Flower Essences?

As humans, we are three-part beings—Spirit, Soul, and Body.  Spirit is our connection to God; the “new” man when we have been redeemed by Christ and this part is perfect, made in HIS image.  The Body, as we all well know can seem very imperfect from time to time with the aches, pains, trauma, and illnesses we can experience. Then there is the Soul: the mind, will, and emotions.  Our thought processes, our beliefs, and the emotions connected to the thoughts and beliefs. As natural health practitioners, it is our ministry to help others achieve balance in the whole being, and it is the soul or emotion part we will focus on today and discuss how emotions affect our well-being and how we can bring harmony into this area for better health.

 We all have these expressions called emotions and may even have experienced a wide range of them this past year as we have experienced the unknowns in our society. Emotions are a critical part of our human nature.  They communicate to us just like physical cues of hunger, pain, fatigue, and tension communicate to us.  Emotions tell us where we are in life and relations to ourselves and others.  They inform us of our spiritual and social needs.  The word “emotion” comes from the Latin root of emovere which means to move, remove or agitate; therefore, emotions were given to us by our Creator to move us or prompt us to do something.  They evoke emotion, and contrary to popular belief, emotions do not lie.  They are accurately communicating what our needs are, but our thoughts about those emotions can certainly be deceptive because they can misinterpret the message the emotion is trying to convey.  The thoughts about the emotions were shaped by those cues we received from the world around us.  Following these thoughts instead of the emotion messengers can lead to being out of touch with our emotions, therefore our needs.  When this occurs, we rely on two equally dysfunctional ways of dealing with our emotions.  We either suppress and deny our feeling or we blame and vent.  Neither of these strategies is effective because neither leads to a feeling of wellbeing.

Our goal is to find Emotional Balance.  To achieve emotional balance, we must learn to listen to the messages our emotions are telling us as well as identify the actual need behind the emotions.  We must then take responsibility for finding ways to get those needs met, not place that responsibility on another.  While many may try to reach this balance by attempting to change their emotions through their mind or body (that is, trying to change their thinking or take drugs that alter chemical messengers in the body that are involved in emotional response) there are ways of dealing directly with our emotions that can produce lasting changes.  One of these tools for emotional balance or healing is flower essences.

What are flower essences?

Flower essences are vibrational remedies made from the flowers of plants.  While “vibrational” remedies may sound a little strange, let me bring to mind other areas that are more familiar where vibrations or energy therapy is applied:  X-rays, radiation therapy for cancer, electrical nerve stimulation for treating pain, and full-spectrum light used to treat seasonal affective disorders.  So not a new idea, but certainly an effective one.  They were founded by Dr. Edward Bach, an English medical doctor born in 1886.  Dr. Bach had become frustrated by the symptomatic approach of “modern” medicine.  He felt that medical doctors focused too much on the pathology of illness and not on the patients themselves.  In his own observations, he noticed that each of his patient’s emotional states were a crucial part of their healing process.  It was this observation and theory that prompted Dr. Bach to begin work on his own remedies using the power of plants.  The flower essences were (and continue to be) created by placing fresh flowers in pure spring water in the sunlight.  The flowers were then removed and the water preserved with brandy to make a mother tincture.  The tincture is then diluted homeopathically. The dilution is so great that only the “vibration” of the plants remain.  The theory is that each flower used in the essence had to overcome many challenges in nature: extremes of temperature and harsh environmental conditions, and that plants, like people, have an “energy” or characteristics that help that person to overcome adversity.    Just as associating a person with positive traits can help us learn to meet life’s challenges, so can associating the right plant energies to bring balance to the soul of a person.  A flower essence captures the vibration of the plant’s personality which helps our own emotional energy.

When we take a flower essence, we are taking in the emotional energy of the plant which can break through blocks in our emotional world and help us feel things we may not be acknowledging.  This increased awareness of our emotions helps us make constructive changes in our lives and bring balance to the whole body.

During this next year, as we discuss holistic approaches to well-being in the home and body, I will bring to you each month a flower, its characteristic’s and the emotional challenges it can help a person to overcome. I am excited about this opportunity to share with you and I hope you find flower essences as exciting as I do.

Health and Blessings,

Kimberly Anderson, ND

Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030, and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

Simples: American Ginseng

The word “simple” can have a few definitions if one were to look it up in the dictionary. One definition of simple is “easy to understand, deal with, or use.”  In reference to plants, the definition refers to an “herb or plant used for medicinal purposes.”  Obviously, as a natural health practitioner, this definition is my favorite, and I am excited to be bringing a “simple” to Natural Health Dialogue each month.  It is my hope that the information I share is “easy to understand, deal with, and use”. 

This month’s simple is American Ginseng.

Ginseng, derived from the Chinese word jen-shen meaning “the essence of man”, has long been valued in Asian countries and was once so revered that only the emperor was allowed to collect the plant.  Panax ginseng is the Asian or Korean species of ginseng and continues to be one of the most highly prized herbs in the world due to its ability to increase energy, physical stamina, and agility.

American Ginseng or Panax quinquefolius has historically been widespread in the Appalachian or Ozark regions of the U.S.   The temperate climate and shady, rich soil in these mountainous regions provide the unique requirements for the growth of ginseng. However, due to overharvesting and urban growth, the ginseng supply is far less than what it once was.  Fortunately, small doses still provide significant health benefits. 

While American Ginseng is less stimulating or energizing than Korean or Asian Ginseng, it contains similar energizing compounds called ginsenosides and a second group of compounds called panaxanes.  These compounds appear to have even more health benefits that include helping the body cope and adapt to stress, boost the immune system, and regulate blood sugar.  Ginseng also has antioxidants that are important in helping to prevent free radical damage that can cause premature aging.

This month, in our holistic dialogues, Dr. Lee has discussed digestion and how important it is for us to be digesting well.  As we age, digesting and utilizing nutrients well can become difficult.  American Ginseng’s medicinal properties make it greatly beneficial in building up and nourishing the digestive organs as well as helping the body to absorb nutrients more efficiently.

While generally safe and non-toxic there are some that should not use ginseng.  Persons with high blood pressure, acute inflammation, or acute illnesses such as cold or flu should not use ginseng.  High doses can cause insomnia and overstimulation.  However, 100 mg one to two times a day can be an effective long-term tonic for digestion, and the other health benefits listed above.

If you think American Ginseng is for you, we would love to help you here at The Health Patch.

Health and Blessings,

Kimberly Anderson, ND

Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the Owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030 and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

Healthy Body Systems – Enzymes

We’ve just completed a full year in which we covered the very important topic of how to cleanse each body system to allow it to function at an optimum level, free of toxins and sludge buildups.  Now this year, as we look at the proper functioning of these systems, we’ll consider “what does it take to allow the systems to have the nutrients to allow them to stay healthy.

For this first offering of the year, we’ll consider enzymes – what are they, why do we need them and how do we get them.

What are enzymes? They are biologically active proteins found in every living cell.  They fall into two different categories. Metabolic enzymes are regulatory; they regulate every biochemical reaction occurring in your body. They are essential for overall health. Digestive enzymes primarily turn the food we eat into energy. There are over 1300 different enzymes found in the body and they combine to numerous coenzymes to form around 100,000 chemicals to carry out virtually all of our body processes. As we look at our digestive system, we will be more concerned with the digestive enzymes – those that break down our foods so that we may extract the nutrients we need to “feed” our bodies.

Why do we need them? Nutrients from the foods we eat could not be extracted without their being broken down into a mush-like substance. This allows the friendly probiotics to “digest” them and then excrete them in a liquified form. Then the intestinal villi may absorb them and pass them along into the bloodstream for delivery to the cells that require them. Enzymes facilitate this process as well as allowing the waste byproducts of digestion to be discarded.

How do we get them? There are several functions that allow us to get the enzymes we need.

Firstly, the body produces some of them and they are secreted along the digestive tract.  Around 50 or so are produced and stored in the pancreas. A “trigger” in the stomach announces the arrival of food components and the pancreas secretes those enzymes needed for the breakdown of the specific foods found in the stomach. The liver, gall bladder, small intestine, stomach, and colon also play a role in this process. And the quantities of enzymes our bodies produce are affected by our age and the health of the various components of our digestive systems.

Secondly, raw foods we consume contain enzymes to help in the digestion of those foods themselves. Unfortunately, those foods generally only contain specific enzymes, and in appropriate quantities, to digest that food itself. Further, cooking and processing these foods destroy most of the enzymes they contain. This fact has led many people to consider a completely raw diet which is difficult to carry out and impractical for most.

Thirdly, these two shortcomings often lead to the necessity for supplementation. Which supplements you need is determined by the foods you eat and the need to know which enzymes you need to add to your diet.

A list of the most common enzymes which would help your dietary needs would include protease and peptidase for digesting proteins, amylase and glucoamylase and malt diastase for starches, lipase for fat, cellulase for fiber, and invertase and alpha-galactosidase for sugar. And it is good to know that in most cases, plant-based enzymes work better than those that are chemical based.

One article I researched stated that almost “one out of every three people in the US experience some kind of digestive problem. Though many suffer, few have to. The typical benefits of enzyme supplementation include reduced digestive distress, increased energy, and improved regularity.”

If you have digestive issues, talk to us about enzyme supplementation. Add “digestive” to your list of Healthy Body Systems!

–  Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030, and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

A Thriving Home and Family: Finances

I had a pastor friend years ago that said there are two main causes of the failure of your marriage: infidelity and finances. I believe as it relates to finances, it’s the stress caused by not adhering to the Biblical admonition in Hebrews 13:5 CSB – “Keep your life free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for He Himself has said, I will never leave you or abandon you.” We all want more! And contentment is a constant struggle and doesn’t come easily. This blog is a sort of summary of what I believe I’ve learned, in my 75 years of life, works where money is concerned.!

Nearly 50 years ago my wife and I returned from military service living in Taiwan but serving in Vietnam. In addition to my military pay, we drew a $500 per month tax exemption, combat pay, and flight pay. And, by American standards, living in Taiwan was inexpensive. We later recalled that we were “living like kings”. But when we returned to the United States, we lost all the special pay and bought a new house and a new car and continued the lifestyle to which we had become accustomed. Six months home and we were a full month’s pay in debt.

Our first solution was to agree to live on a family budget. It took us two months to figure out what our actual expenses were – house payment, utilities, car payment, gas, food, family clothing (we had child #3 there), entertainment, etc. Then I got some ledger paper and began the process of an actual budget – adding funds to each page on payday and subtracting from the appropriate page with every expenditure. And we learned that when friends invited us to go out to eat with them (for example), we didn’t look at the checkbook to see if there were funds; we looked at the entertainment page of the budget to see if there were funds available in that category. It took work, but it was more comfortable in the long run to know that the monthly amounts we’d added to the personal property tax category allowed us to pay the large sum as we’d prepared for it.

We’re Christians. We tithe. It’s the first check we write every month. In Malachi 3:8 God says, “Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed me. But you say, how have we robbed You? In tithes and offerings.” I won’t get into how much is a tithe or offering? I accept II Corinthians 9:7 where it says, “Each person should do as he has decided in his heart – not reluctantly or out of compulsion since God loves a cheerful giver.” God looks at our hearts; work out the amount with Him. But remember that everything we have comes from Him and He wants us to give some back – just because we love Him! We provide everything for our children, but remember how it feels when they give us a gift – just because they want to!!!

Many years ago, I read a very small booklet called (as I remember it) “The richest man in the world.” In summary, it spotlighted the need to have a savings plan to be ready for hard times to come and things that are too big to purchase all at once – like that new motorbike, or a pony, etc. When I was trying to teach this concept to my very young children, I gave them a $1 weekly allowance – as ten dimes. I have a shoebox I’d divided into compartments. Each child put a dime in the top slot marked “tithe”. Every Sunday we took that one out and took it for the offering plate at church; they looked forward to getting to do that. The next slot was a dime for “savings” – and once a month we went to the bank and let them put their 40 cents in a passbook account. They kept the passbook in their rooms. They could watch it grow. The third slot was labeled “something big”. That dime was put in a piggy bank which was emptied each year and we took them shopping for a gift they bought for themselves with the $5 or so they had saved. That was a lot of money for a preschool kid in those days. And it made a point! And our family “something big” has often allowed us to get through a tough patch we hadn’t planned on.

All this assumes “no debt”. Step one if you’ve already “blown it” is to get out of debt. That’s what we did. You can make the debt a budget item that will one day go away. You can take a Dave Ramsey sort of class that teaches you how to get out of debt and stay out of debt.

Actually, the real first step is deciding to live within your means and allow God to bless you for some great unexpected blessing to come! Start today. Learn to be contented with what you have, plan for the future, and use it faithfully. Remember, you can’t take it with you anyway!

  • Randy Lee, BSE, MS, ND, is the owner of The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC, 73130. Call us at (405) 736-1030, and visit our website at www.thehealthpatch.com.

Annual Cleansing Summary

It’s been a great year for focusing on body system cleansing in general. I started in January talking about each body system and how it functions, trying to focus not so much on the specifics of the functioning as on “what could go wrong” in each system that would cause them not to function optimally. I wanted us to see how the foods and drinks we consume can enhance or be a detriment to our body functions and their proper functioning or led to disease within that system and the whole body as a result.

Consider a car (for one illustration). If it doesn’t get oil, the parts of the vehicle that use the oil can break down when the oil is not applied. But the breakdown of that single or those few parts may cause the entire vehicle to become useless. A broken brake line may not cause the engine to cease functioning, but it makes the entire car useless for transportation – not because it can’t run, but because it can’t stop, and that can lead to a crash.

An untreated liver problem may not stop the heart from performing as it should, but it stops the body from being able to remove toxins and that may lead to any number of diseases and prevent the whole body from giving us the vitality we need to have a good, productive life.

I’ve enjoyed talking about the cleansing regimen that I use. I celebrated my 75th birthday last month, and while that may be noteworthy, even more noteworthy is the fact that while I have found help in finding and “reworking” some of the issues that have cost many of my relatives (i.e., the genetics) their lives at a younger age than this, I have also been able to maintain an active, vital, and enjoyable life.

And, beyond cleansing, I also use:

  • food enzymes and probiotics to aid my aging digestive system
  • products to slow down the aging process
  • products to support my genetic weaknesses (things that “run in the family”).
  • other products focused on whatever is bothering me at this time!

Feel free to drop by the store and talk to us about any of these issues that are troubling you.

I’ve tried not just to present a “possible” annual cleansing regimen but show you in some detail the regimen that I have personally used for several years now. And I can truthfully say that, even at this age, I feel good and have only minor restrictions on my chosen life activities. I still work at my store 40-50 hours each week; I take care of my farm animals on my five acre “farm”; I have a 5000sqft garden that produces much of what we eat; I have an orchard and I mow about half of the acreage each week. I have a loving, caring wife, three married kids, seven grandkids, and our second greatgrandchild is on the way. Life is good and God blesses us in countless (and often surprising) ways each day.

I would encourage you to stay healthy. Eat healthy, nutrient-rich foods; drink healthy liquids including adequate, daily water; get outdoors for a bit of sunshine and at least walk a bit each day; and take time daily to thank friends, neighbors, and family members for the regular support they add to your life, and God for His rich blessings. I can’t say enough about the uplift we get from a grateful attitude.

It’s been correctly stated that life is a journey, not a destination. Don’t try to run through it or walk it alone. Take time to enjoy the journey – with others and with God’s help!

Nothing here is meant to diagnose or treat any diseases. It is simply what I personally do for my health and is given to you for educational purposes. If you have a serious health problem, please consult a competent health practitioner.

Berberine

This month we are talking about the small intestine and the importance of keeping it healthy and what can be done to bring back balance and health to this vital portion of the digestive tract. 

Bacteria is necessary for the function of the digestive system but most of the bacteria needs to be in the large intestine not the small intestine.  Too many bacteria in the small intestine can cause a condition called SIBO or Small Intestinal Overgrowth.  SIBO can cause the small intestine to not be able to keep up with its important job of breaking down food and absorbing nutrients, leading to vitamin deficiencies and uncomfortable symptoms like gas and bloating.  Berberine has been found to have great benefits for the small intestine by helping to restructure the balance of the microbiome and reducing bacteria overgrowth.

So what is this Berberine?  It may sound like it is something new, but Berberine has been used for centuries by natural health practitioners.  It is an alkaloid—a naturally occurring compound—found in plants that have traditionally been used where infections have been present such as Barberry, Goldenseal, and Oregon grape Root. 

Modern studies are showing that not only is the Berberine found in these plants beneficial against infection, but this alkaloid may be helpful in other conditions like diabetes, arthritis, hypertension, and high cholesterol.  In fact, it was written in the December 2012 issue of Natural Medicine Journal  “Any condition that would be favorably impacted by a patient losing weight and or exercising more may be impacted favorably with oral berberine supplementation.”

“It makes sense to consider berberine for clients with insulin resistance, pre-diabetes, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, hypertension, heart disease, dyslipidemia, cancer, depression, and other neuropsychiatric diseases.”

In a 2015 Endrocrinol journal it was stated: “…..modern pharmacological effects of berberine on glucose metabolism…include improving insulin resistance, promoting insulin secretion…..”

Not only has berberine shown to help improve the regulation and function of insulin, but it also appears to inhibit the growth of fat cells.  Good news for those of us needing to lose weight!

Losing weight and controlling insulin levels are both great benefits for the heart and the use of berberine is showing some even more positive effects on the heart and high blood pressure by stimulating the release of nitric oxide, a molecule that relaxes arteries.  That means better blood flow and lower blood pressure.

High Cholesterol?  Yep, berberine may help there too.  Eleven clinical trials with a total of 874 participants noted that berberine may reduce LDL cholesterol while increasing HDL.  That means down with the bad and up with the good, just what a healthy body needs.

Increase insulin function, inhibit growth of fat cells, stimulate nitric oxide, lower cholesterol, fight infection, and reduce bacterial overgrowth. Could we have a silver bullet here?  Maybe not, but when you add in the anti-inflammatory properties of berberine and research showing positive effects on pain reduction in arthritic conditions, we may be getting close

Especially in America where nearly 34 million people have diabetes (95% is Type 2), 54 million people have an arthritic condition, 4 in 10 Americans are obese, and approximately 60% of people diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrom also have SIBO, supplementing with berberine in either isolate form or in an herbal sounds like something to look in to.

Always be sure to use quality supplements that have been sourced and harvested well.  We here at The Healthpatch are always happy to help you find your best supplements.

Health and Blessings,

Kimberly Anderson, ND

For more information, contact Naturopathic Doctor Randy Lee, owner of The Health Patch at 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, Midwest City, at 405-736-1030, e-mail pawpaw@thehealthpatch.com or visit TheHeathPatch.com.