Researchers maintain that we should get most of our nutrients from a well-balanced diet. But they also say that there may be real benefits to some natural remedies. Here we are going to mention some of the promising.
First of all, garlic, a member of the onion family, which has been used as a medical herb since the time of the ancient Egyptians. European studies show that in cultures where people eat lots of garlic there are fewer incidents of gastric cancer, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Garlic appears to 'boost the immune system and help fight infection by increasing the activity of immune cells'. It also has antibacterial properties from a sulphur-containing compound called allicin, formed when garlic is crushed or sliced. Cooking or processing elim
inates allicin, but experts say that standardized garlic powders can from allicin when consumed. Garlic has many beneficial compounds. That's why deodorized garlic tablets and extracts seem to work as well as the raw herb in reducing cholesterol.
Secondly, Echinacea is a flowering herb which was, in great mother's day, found in many medicine cabinets. Echinacea fell out of favour with the introduction of antibiotics, but now it's making comeback. The herb has a mild protective effect against colds and flu, and in those who do fall ill it seems to limit the duration and severity of the symptoms. One study found that those with the lowest levels of white blood cells got the most benefits, which supports the theory that Echinacea boosts the immune system by coaxing the body to produce more of these cells. Although it doesn't work for everyone, Echinacea is safe to try when we feel a cold or a flu coming on. However, unless directed by a doctor, people with autoimmune disorders should avoid it.
In the third place, zinc is an essential trace mineral. Some of the richest natural sources are shellfish and red meat. After sucking on zinc lozenges, cold sufferers got better faster than those given a sugar pill. The zinc group suffers coughing, headaches and nasal congestion for four days: the persons who get a sugar pill stay stuffed up for more than a week.
Last but not least, it is better to point the benefits of another natural remedy: Pycnogenol and grape-seed extracts. While these two herbal products come from different plants, each is a rich source of flavonoids, antioxidants protecting against free radicals that damage cells and tissue. Flavonoids, which occur naturally in fruit and vegetables, work to keep cells healthy. Some doctors say that Pycnogenol and grape-seed extracts seem to ease the symptoms of inflammatory diseases and relieve allergies. And in a yet-to-be published study on the effects of Pycnogenol on young smokers, it reduced blood platelet clumping, a dangerous artery-clogging effect of smoking.
Therefore, in order to keep ourselves fit we should delve into nature's medicine chest.
Feel Better Naturally written by Cristina Nuta for FamousWhy.com
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