Ever since the introduction of antibiotics to the field of medicine in the mid 19th century, has saved countless lives, turning serious and life-threatening infections into temporary ones. However, with the millions, if not billions of prescriptions for antibiotic drugs that doctors have filled out over the years there comes a serious price: microorganisms are adapting to our techniques. We now have what’s called “super bugs” have become resistant to antibiotics and their effects.
THE PROBLEM OF SUPER BUGS
Super bugs don’t respond to regular prescriptions of medicinal antibiotics- in fact they’re resistant to them. While our methods for killing off unwanted bacteria in our bodies developed, their methods for fighting back grew stronger. Today, we need to take serious measures to deal with the problem of antibiotic resistance so that we can once again gain the upper hand against pathological microorganisms.
- Antibiotics are often prescribed for viral infections, against which they have no effect.
- Antibiotics are often prescribed to kill a large spectrum of various bacteria and not killing more specifically the bacteria responsible for the disease.
- Incorrect use of antibiotics
Specifically, this has caused certain bacteria to acquire an antibiotic resistance, which is result of mutations in some of their genes. Given that bacteria exchange their genetic material easily, antibiotic resistance adopted by one species may easily spread to other bacterial species.
THE NEW WAVE OF NATURAL TREATMENTS
With all being said, people are now option for natural and safer antibiotics to fight off milder infections. However, in order to do this the right way, it is essential to be familiar with the types of antibiotics and their effects.
CHOOSING A NATURAL ANTIBIOTIC
Antibiotics can fight bacteria, fungi, and some parasites, but not viruses. That’s why doctors won’t prescribe you antibiotics for a viral infection or flu. In the same way, you shouldn’t attempt to use natural antibiotics to fight viruses- they simply won’t do anything. Natural antibiotics can be further divided into antibacterials and antifungals. While, medicinal antibiotics are usually designed to do both, nature’s variety usually have pretty specific functions.
Hence, it is recommended to consult a doctor about the kind of natural antibiotic is adequate for your condition. This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions about your medical condition and/or current medication. Do not disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking advice or treatment because of something you have read here.
Antibacterials work against wound infections, ear infections, strep throat, H. pylori, E. Coli or Salmonella.
Some of the most powerful natural antibacterials include:
- Garlic extract
- Onion extract
- Ginger extract
- Raw Honey
- Oregano Essential Oil
- Horseradish root
- Habenero Peppers
Natural antifungals work against skin rashes, yeast infections, athlete`s foot, and candida albicans overgrowth.
- Ginger extract
- Echinacea root extract
- Raw honey extract
When it comes to treating a specific condition, these compounds are typically found in tincture or supplement form. Make sure you consult your medical practitioner to get the appropriate dose. For preventative purposes, eat all of these whole foods on a regular basis.
Use these two recipes to get started:
The Blood Sugar-Balancing Apple Cider Vinegar Vinaigrette Recipe That All Diabetics Should Know
When you think about common causes of death, diabetes doesn’t usually to mind. But in actuality, this metabolic disease remains the 7th leading cause of death among Americans. According to the American Diabetes Association, 1.4 million new cases of diabetes are reported in the United States every year.
Diabetes is a condition characterized by the inadequate production of insulin, resulting in higher than normal blood sugar levels. Although those who suffer from a shortage of insulin must face a lifelong battle, a variety of natural remedies are readily available to help treat this condition.
Several herbs and spices, like cinnamon and ginger are among the more well known foods that have been claimed to lower blood sugar. However, there is one natural therapy that isn’t usually given much attention in this discourse.
The virgin’s secret
A group of Spanish scientists conducted a study to observe the relationship between different types of dietary fat and blood sugar control in humans. Their findings showed that oleic acid, which is found in olive oil is useful for regulating insulin secretion and reducing spikes in blood sugar levels after eating.
When it comes to extra virgin olive oil, not many people are willing to give consent, especially if their interactions with this ingredient involve cooking. The chemical structure of extra virgin olive oil and its high unsaturated fat content make it susceptible to oxidative damage when used in high temperatures. (In these situations, coconut oil is usually the healthier – and safer – alternative).
But thanks to a group of intelligent Spaniards, olive oil has been proven to not be half as bad as we once thought. In addition to it being able to lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, olive oil is a rich source of monounsaturated fat, which lowers your risk of heart disease.
The case for fat
Fat can sound unattractive. However, not all fats are created equal. Incorporating healthy fats to our diet, like that which are found in nuts and avocado, is just as important as getting our regular fill of essential vitamins and minerals.
Monounsaturated fats aren’t just useful for keeping our hearts happy. They’re also effective in helping our bodies to absorb carotenoids, the compound responsible for giving carrots their bright orange color. Without this compound, our bodies can’t take advantage of vitamin A – which is converted from carotenoids – rendering this nutrient completely useless. In other words, if we fail to consume healthy fats, we fail our bodies.
Although I’ve already mentioned that it’s best not to cook with olive oil, there’s no harm in drizzling it cold over a bed of salad.
Here’s a salad dressing recipe by Dr. Axe to help you incorporate healthy fats to your diet – and regulate your blood sugar levels at the same time.
Rasberry Vinaigrette Recipe
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: None
- 3/4 c. organic olive oil
- 1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp. Sea Salt
- 2 Tbsp. honey
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1/2 c. fresh or frozen red raspberries
- 1/4 c. water
- Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until desired consistency is reached.
- Store extra dressing in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Make This Superpowered Honey-Garlic Mixture The Moment You Start Getting Sick
The powers of garlic begin in the taste and aroma sensations. Taste both triggers and activates our salivary glands and digestive “juices.” Without tasting and smelling, our stomachs would not be ‘ready’ for food, and we’d have trouble with digestion and making use of the nutrients found within.
This is why supplementation is never as effective as eating a whole food diets or using herbal tinctures, if you just swallow a capsule, and lets say a garlic capsule, you have completely bypassed the first stage of digestion – I don’t think your mouth is going to begin salivating from the site of a vegetable capsule! For those who have a diminished sense of taste, garlic can be a flavor enhancer and a very useful addition to a meal to again trigger the first phase of digestion.
What Makes Garlic So Good For You?
This pungent bulb benefits us in more ways than just digestion, however. In Ayurvedic medicine, pungent tastes such as that from garlic benefits both the lungs and large intestine, those who have the Dosha types of Kapha and Vata are best suited for garlic consumption.
There is a high potential for the organosulfur compounds that are derived from garlic to both prevent and combat chronic diseases; such as cancer, inflammatory, and cardiovascular diseases. There are two classes of organosulfur compounds which are found in whole garlic cloves, γ-glutamylcysteines, and cysteine sulfoxides, not that you need to memorize these names. (2)
What you really need to understand about garlic is how these beneficial compounds are activated. When whole raw garlic cloves are crushed, minced, pressed or chopped, an enzyme known as alliinase is released. When alliinase is released or “damaged” from the crushing, pressing or mincing , the garlic begins to convert a compound alliin into ‘sulfenic acids’.
Interestingly enough, a similar reaction happens as well in onions! When you chop an onion you are breaking open cells and creating sulfenic acids, which in the onions case produce a gas that reacts with the water in your eyes, making them water! Those darn sulfenic acids.
When the sulfenic acids react with each other in garlic, they form allicin and that is when the pungent smell fills your kitchen and the benefits become available!
So in short, when fresh garlic is chopped or crushed, the enzyme alliinase converts alliin into allicin, which is responsible for the aroma of fresh garlic and the benefits associated with consuming it. (3)
You can find entire books written about this stinking rose, studies have demonstrated the positive effects of garlic on more than 150 different diseases! Allicin is by far the most studied phytonutrient!
Beneficial Properties of Garlic
1. Improving Cardiovascular Health and Circulation
Garlic has been shown to protect against blood clotting, plaque buildup, high blood lipid levels and could reduce blood pressure (4)
2. Reducing Inflammation
Garlic can reduce the risk of osteoarthritis and other conditions associated with inflammation
3. Boosting Immune Function
Garlic has antibacterial, anti-fungal, antiviral, and anti-parasitic properties (5)
4. Cancer Fighting
Beneficial for brain, lung, breast, gastric, and pancreatic cancers.
Science is still uncovering the answers behind how exactly the beneficial compounds in garlic are absorbed in the body, while it has been studied that allicin is absorbed in the intestines, as 90% of nutrients are, allicin has never been detected in the blood, urine or stool even after consumption of 25 g of fresh garlic or 60 mg of pure allicin! (source: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/233238217_Allicin_and_Other_Functional_Active_Components_in_Garlic_Health_Benefits_and_Bioavailability)
These findings suggest that allicin is rapidly metabolized – it has been found that the actual smell of “garlic breath” is a proposed indicator for the bioavailability of allicin! So the smell of garlic on your breath it is the outcome of the metabolized allicin, which can be measured in exhaled air!
How To Eat Garlic – The Right Way
Now that you’ve got an understanding of how garlic is metabolized into those much talked about components of allicin and alliin you should also know how to use garlic to reap the benefits. Just as olive oil should not be heated, yet it is the most widely used cooking oil – garlic (like many other antioxidant-rich foods) should not be browned or cooked as this drastically reduces the beneficial properties!
The most important step to unlocking garlic’s health benefits is crushing, mincing or pressing the garlic cloves and allowing it to sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes so that the enzyme reaction can happen which produces the valued allicin.
If you just throw minced garlic into a pan without letting it sit, this reaction does not happen. After allicin is created, the minced garlic can withstand about 10-15 minutes of medium-low heat without damaging the allicin, however, it is actually still best when raw!
- 5-15 minutes = minimal loss of nutrients
- 15-30 minutes = moderate loss of nutrients
- 45+ minutes = substantial loss of nutrients
While eating raw garlic may not sound very appealing, let me tell you – it is powerful stuff and you can actually enjoy the healing properties of garlic, in a more palatable form when you make Upgraded Honey + Garlic
When To Use Garlic
In my own Holistic Nutrition practice, I would recommend garlic or Upgraded Honey + Garlic for
- Colds & flu
- Sore throat
- High blood pressure
- Lowering LDL cholesterol levels
- Killing parasites
- Regulating blood sugar
- Ear infections
- Increasing bile flow
- Immune boosting
- Anti-microbial properties
- Busting candida
NOTE: Please speak with the appropriate medical physician before including garlic into your lifestyle if you are taking blood thinners
Another awesome fact is that garlic is accessible everywhere! It is used all around the world, making it an easy remedy to get your hands on when on vacation.
Now aside from just the potential allicin content in garlic, like many natural foods, garlic has more than just one benefit, this is a whole food with a wide array of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients. Along with allicin, garlic is also rich in manganese, calcium, phosphorus, and selenium, plus vitamins B6 and C.
So include more garlic in your lifestyle! Add it to your homemade salad dressing, dips and use it as a garnish. Also remember that if it sprouts, don’t throw it out. Sprouted garlic is not only safe to eat but it may be even healthier than non-sprouted garlic – in many scenarios, sprouted foods contain more antioxidant activity than fresher, younger versions.
The reason for this is because garlic is asexual, meaning when garlic sprouts, you can actually plant it and a garlic plant will grow, just as with grains and edible seeds. So the benefits of sprouted garlic should not be surprising when you consider that nutritional changes typically occur in plants when they sprout.
When seedlings grow into baby green plants, they make many new compounds, including those that protect the young plant against pathogens. The same thing is happening when green shoots grow from old heads of garlic!
So have a clove or two of garlic a day and still use it when it sprouts, if you’re concerned with garlic breath. Just remind yourself that your delicious smelling breath means that the garlic’s beneficial healing properties are being utilized!
Check out how simple it is to make an Upgraded Honey + Garlic! Add this to teas, enjoy straight or get creative!
Upgraded Honey + Garlic
Makes one 4 oz Jar
- 1 head of organic garlic, peeled
- Unpasteurized liquid honey
- 1 sprig fresh thyme (optional)
- 3-6 fresh rosemary needles (optional)
- Peel each garlic clove and use the back of your knife to slightly crush each clove, then peel off the paper shell.
- Place the activated garlic into your jar with fresh herbs (if using) and cover with enough honey to completely cover and submerge, leaving at least 3 inches of space from the top, as during the fermentation process the honey will expand and can bubble over.
- Screw or snap on the lid of the jar and let it hang out in your cupboard for 3-5 days. Place a plate underneath the jar to catch any overflow.
- You will be infusing the benefits of the garlic into the honey and the garlic will absorb some sweetness from the honey.
- After 3-5 days, place in the refrigerator to keep fresh throughout the season.
- Consume 1-2 cloves daily, as needed
I recommend flipping the jar upside down daily to re-saturate and submerge the garlic if you are using a fido style jar, if you use a lid which screws on, you should twist it open daily to flush out the CO2 buildup.
Fermentation is simple, but it is not always easy. “Ah-ha” moments can happen, I have seen jars explode from the CO2 pressure and while this experience is not fun – it happens along the fermentation journey. Maybe one day I will share with my water kefir story…
If you’re looking to reduce the risk of an incident; use fermentation approved equipment.