Personal Health

Some Effective Remedies & Suggestions

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CURING THE COMMON COLD: I used to be plagued by 3 or 4 bad colds every winter, but no more. Now I haven't had more than the very beginnings of a respiratory infection since 2006. I found a simple treatment that really works for me. The cure is zinc, but it is absolutely essential that treatment be started immediately at the very first hint of symptoms. This is because colds start in the nose and throat where topical zinc can effectively treat them. However once they progress deeper into the respiratory system they become effectively out of reach, and zinc provides only minor benefits.

So on the very first hint of sore throat I use zinc in two forms. I begin using ZiCam nasal zinc spray every two hours. (Unfortunately, I can no longer find this product, and I believe it may have been replaced by a q-tip like nasal applicator which I haven't tried yet.) I use ZiCam until at least half a day after all symptoms vanish. If less symptoms may return. Also I hold a standard zinc mineral supplement tablet in my mouth for around an hour 3 times a day. The dissolved tablet directly works against sore throat to kill the virus there. This affects taste temporarily but it is well worth it.

For me this treatment works wonders and has greatly improved my health during winter. But remember it is absolutely essential to begin treatment at the very first hint of symptoms. I always keep a supply in my medicine cabinet for immediate use so I don't have to wait to start treatment. It does provide some help thereafter, but early treatment has effectively prevented any cold from developing at all for me.

One theory for why flu and colds are winter diseases is that low sun exposure reduces body levels of Vit. D in winter. Vit. D is a known antagonist of these viruses. Anyway I take regular Vit. D now all year round as the evidence mounts that Vit. D deficiency is widespread and has a whole variety of adverse health effects. For colds Vit. C and echinacea also may convey some benefit, but zinc at the very first symptoms really performs wonders.

LOWER BACK PAIN: What usually helps me is lying on the floor or bed with bottom against the wall and legs straight up against the wall. This works for me to realign my lower back. If I have lower back pain, I'll do it an hour a day if possible while I read, and it often brings significant relief the first time. Also make sure your sleeping position doesn't aggravate it. Try sleeping on back or with plenty of pillows to give your back the proper alignment. On a long term basis one needs regular exercises to strengthen the core muscles around the spine and in the abdomen. Chiropractic can help also just for a quick realignment, though I don't recommend it on a regular basis as I suspect repeated adjustments can weaken spinal stability. I also have a trick of bracing my feet against the sides of my bathtub and forcibly twisting my spine in both directions by pressing against the shower wall. When my back is out I can often readjust it myself this way.

However the best way is to prevent it before it occurs. The way to do this is by strengthening the core muscles around the spine and the abdominal girdle. There are a number of exercises designed to strengthen these core muscles. Lying on the back and repeatedly twisting outstretched arms and legs in opposite directions is an effective and easily performed example.

HEART IRREGULARITIES: A few years ago I developed atrial fibrillation which was successfully treated with an ablation. However I still sometimes get some irregular heartbeat, especially if I lie down to sleep on my left side. For me a standard magnesium supplement at bedtime is usually enough to stabilize my heart rate, and of course I will always immediately change whatever position I'm in if I feel an irregularity starting up. Magnesium not only stabilizes heart rate, but is essential for protecting one's bones as one gets older. Whenever I feel any heart irregularity I chew 1 to 3 magnesium supplements and in most cases the problem subsides.

Depending on symptoms I've found taking both 500 mg. magnesium and Taurine 500 mg. in the mornings and then again later in the day if any symptoms return work extremely well. These two supplements together are the best natural treatment I've found and have essentially cured any recurrences of my afib. The antiarrhythmic properties of Taurine are well documented and can be Googled.

STOMACH UPSET: Whenever I feel the beginnings of an upset or queasy stomach from something I ate, I chew about a half level teaspoon of anise seeds. Anise seeds have a powerful antibacterial action and this almost always clears up the problem very quickly. I strongly recommend anise seeds whenever a bacterial infection in the stomach is suspected. They also help treat mouth infections if chewed and held in the mouth. Make sure to chew them well to release the full medicinal effect.

Additionally eating a good serving of active culture yogurt will often help as the large dose of good bacteria tends to overwhelm the bacteria causing the stomach upset. Organic no fat plain yogurt is a regular part of my diet.

As a last resort take an antibiotic. It will work directly in the stomach on the bad bacteria even before it goes into your system. Usually a single dose will do the trick. I always have antibiotics on hand.

FATIGUE AND CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME: Rhodiola is a very effective treatment for fatigue from either over exercise or from chronic fatigue syndrome. Its effect is quick and strong and one would only wish all treatments worked this well. I need to take only a half a capsule and the worst kind of fatigue quickly subsides to a very low level. I may well still be tired, but the horrible feeling of energy metabolism collapse in one's core simply disappears or nearly so. It is really a wonder drug and the proverbial magic bullet. I discovered it by reading an article in Science News detailing scientific proof of its efficacy. And I also take it before exercise as well as after, that works even better! Rhodiola is available at health food stores.

SLEEP APNEA: An effective treatment for sleep apnea is the inexpensive mandibular adjustment device from PureSleep that is advertised and approved by the FDA to treat snoring. Another thing that works sometimes is to sleep on one's side with one's head tilted back as far as is comfortable which holds the airway open during sleep.

TICK DEFENSES: When I was a kid spending summers on my dad's land just outside Branson, MO we used to get attached ticks and chiggers routinely. They were a real nuisance but we didn't worry because there was almost no threat of disease. Here in NJ the threat of Lyme disease is very real and most of my dogs have gotten it even when on the usual preventatives. The easy and most effective way I've found to keep them from biting is to wear elastic waist and ankle pants (down over higher topped socks) and either a light turtleneck or something else with tight wrist and neck such as some of the Under Armor tops. The only exposure then is hands and head which ticks don't prefer and are easy to check. Keeping one's hair very short also helps deter them as they prefer less exposed attachments. Admittedly a little less comfortable in really hot weather but it does enormously reduce the likelihood of ticks biting. So far this 2009 season I've found over two dozen ticks crawling on me but none attached. I would not recommend any of the chemical preventatives as they all carry some health risk.

SUN EXPOSURE: Too much sun exposure causes skin wrinkling, skin cancers, cataracts and macular degeneration, but a little bit is good for you. The general rule is less is preferable, certainly not enough to cause any reddening or more than a mild tan. I never use sunscreen as I think the long term effects, like those of most modern chemicals, are unknown. In general if you get enough sun to get a significant tan you are harming your skin over the long term, at the very least greatly increasing the degree of wrinkling in later life. But a little sunshine produces vitamin D and likely discourages harmful skin microorganisms.

Also I routinely wear a wide brim straw hat when outside. Like my father I have actinic keratoses, a largely benign but pre-cancerous skin condition, on my forehead and bald spot. Every year or so these can be frozen off either by a dermatologist or even by yourself using an OTC wart and skin tag remover using a milder freezing chemical.

My glasses are polycarbonate with large aviator style lenses for maximum UV blockage as my parents both had macular degeneration. Polycarbonate blocks almost all UV rays and also provides maximum impact resistance. I strongly recommend polycarbonate lenses for anyone who wears glasses.

THE IMPORTANCE OF PROSTATE SELF EXAMS: The prejudice on the part of insecure males who are worried they might secretly have 'homo' tendencies if they admit any hint of posterior response seems very deeply ingrained in male society. I recall with amusement the incredibly shocked and offended response of a (male) doctor when I happened to mention in passing that every half year or so I self examine my own prostate for signs of any lumps that might be indicative of cancer there. He apparently considered me the worst kind of pervert for taking this simple obvious step to protect my health!

Prostate self examination makes incredibly good sense for every man over 50 or so who can manage it. The idea that the very concept offends doctors when they should rationally be insisting on it indicates just how deep this male prejudice is. If every man did it it would certainly increase early detection and save many lives.

OSTEOPOROSIS: Don't rely on dairy for calcium to prevent osteoporosis. Remember the US has probably the highest dairy consumption in the world, and also one of the highest osteoporosis rates! According to the UN the rate of osteoporosis is actually correlated with high intake of meat proteins, not lack of calcium. Also regular load bearing exercise, vitamin D, and magnesium are vital to maintaining bone strength.

HEART DISEASE AND CHOLESTEROL: There is considerable evidence that cholesterol is not the primary culprit in heart disease, and that inflammatory processes play an important part. And I certainly question whether statins are the best treatment as they can cause serious problems of their own. A simple aspirin regimen is likely much better, since it also is an anti-inflammatory. This as well as its blood thinning may well explain its effectiveness in reducing heart attack rates.

OBESITY: There are a number of factors involved in the obesity epidemic not all of which are clear. But certainly the growth hormones given to food animals are one such factor, as well as the vast amounts of sugar and fat added to processed foods.

The solution is rather simple though. Just eat organic and natural non processed foods in moderation and get plenty of exercise. It's basically just a matter of basic intelligence and a little minimal will power. Avoid almost anything that comes in a package. That's the approach I use. I'm 6' and 180 lbs. I should be perhaps 10 lbs. lighter and get more exercise.

It is simply a matter of emulating the lifestyle of how humans evolved. (The ideal one, not the actual reality which was feast or famine with plenty of bugs and scavenged remains and no veggies or fruits during winter.) Basically full days of moderate exercise (preferably useful work) and only natural unprocessed foods. That's what the human body has evolved to be healthy on. It is also the most sustainable life style for the coming future shortages so we should be getting used to it while we can!

THE SIMPLE SURE WAY TO LOSE WEIGHT: The key to really losing weight is quite simple. Just stay hungry! If you stay hungry you will automatically lose weight no matter what else you do. Come to think of hunger as your friend rather than your enemy, because hunger will help you achieve your weight loss goals and become healthier and more energetic. It's amazing to me that most people seem to be abject slaves to simply feeling hungry and seem to have no self control over it at all. This is ridiculous because hunger is just a feeling over which anyone can exercise conscious control if they choose to. Not only that but there is considerable evidence that calorie restriction in itself increases longevity.

BAD BREATH: When I was young the suggested testing method for what was then called halitosis was to lick the back of your hand and smell it. This seems to work quite well to test one's mouth odor. Bad breath is of course usually a sign of dental or other mouth infection.

A simple effective way to treat the underlying infection is to sleep with a pinch of anise seeds against the infected area until it clears up. However if it's internal to a tooth you need a dentist.

BODY ODOR: I've never had unpleasant body odors, and never used underarm or other deodorants. Though many people do develop unpleasant body odors supposedly about half of the US population doesn't have them. This may be hormonal or have to do with one's bacterial skin flora. If bacterial it should be treatable by introducing a superior bacterial flora. If you are like me and have a pleasant body odor then certainly don't use deodorants. Minimizing artificial chemical use, especially in or on your body, is always wise.

AGING: Actually though my brain may be a little slower now I am one hell of a lot smarter, wiser and better educated now than I was at 27 (the age Virginia University scientist Timothy Salthouse claims the brain 'begins to decline'), not to mention well adjusted to the world! I certainly wouldn't go back to my 27 year old brain state even if I could.

TOILETS, KITCHENS AND BACTERIAL RISKS: All the studies I've seen report that vastly more, and more dangerous bacteria are found in kitchens than in bathrooms. It follows that women's hands are likely to carry a higher dangerous bacterial load than men's unless they wash very throughly.

There was a recent suggestion that unisex public toilets would be a significant social efficiency. An eminently practical idea, but unfortunately political correctness will always trump efficiency. After all if everyone just squatted over the storm sewer grates or went on the grass we wouldn't even need a single loo to be built and would save tremendous resources. But remember, the function of government is not efficiency, it is the process of coming up with more and more ways to spend money (i.e. to transfer money from the masses to the special interests).

Actually the most environmentally sound method of defecating and urinating is simply to do it in some natural area. It fertilizes the environment and there are no resources expended. One can also just pee on the lawn or garden. This is optimal and quite convenient. Note that men should spread their urine around lest it burn vegetation if too concentrated.

MYOPIA: One more study by clueless scientists suggests 'sunlight exposure in childhood diminishes myopia'. They report "We're seeing large increases in myopia among children in urban societies all around the world - and the outstanding common factor may be less and less time spent outdoors." Correct correlation but then amusingly they then postulate lack of sunlight as the cause when quite obviously when one grows up outdoors the eyes tend to focus on things further away than the limited distances possible within a room, or even worse to a TV or book. That's almost certainly the relevant factor - not sunlight.

CHOICE OF SEX PARTNERS: There is currently an unrecognized epidemic of female genital deformity which did not exist when I was young. Almost every one of the many millions of female genitals viewable on the internet shows varying degrees of asymmetrical misshapen spongy growths on the labia minor, most likely the result of HPV infections. An uninfected woman will have smooth symmetrical inner lips but these are currently rare. When I was young the girls I had sex with were all like this. Though men likely have much the same rates of infection, most HPV strains don't seem to cause visible symptoms in men. HPV can also be passed orally an anally.

This is a result of the vast increase in promiscuity of both men and women resulting in the fact that most people (in the cultures where photos of female genitals are viewable online) now carry multiple and likely dangerous strains of HPV virus. HPV infection is the most likely source of this genital deformity epidemic.

I'm the first who seems to have recognized the existence of this epidemic presumably because no politically correct person wants to tell a woman her sex is abnormal and thus anesthetic. Either that or it has become so pervasive that even doctors think it's normal. This deformity expresses as pronounced asymmetrical spongy enlargements of the inner labia. These are not natural at all. Natural healthy labia minora are smooth and symmetrical with no such unnatural and unaesthetic growths.

There is growing evidence that at least some HPV strains cause cancer. And there seems to be evidence linking increasing rates of throat cancer in men to cunnillingus.

But not only STD's, such as HPV, but all sorts of other diseases are passed via sexual contact. Chronic sinus infections and ulcer and heartburn infections can be passed via kissing.

Only recently has the importance of one's personal bacterial biota begun to become clear. This can affect personal mood and mental state, immune responses and many other physical effects. These are the subject of intensive research and should become clearer in the near future. And it is clear that kissing is one means of introducing new bacterial cultures into the mouth and into the gut, thus potentially affecting one's health in as yet unpredictable ways.

Thus, all thing considered, it is clear that for one's own health one should minimize the number of one's sexual partners, and limit them only to overall healthy partners. Monogamy, or even abstinence is the best defense, except perhaps where one may actually improve one's health by having intimate contact with partners significantly healthier than oneself.

MINIMIZING LIFE RISKS: It seems obvious but simply living so as to minimize all the risks to one's health can help prevent random accidental events that can have permanently devastating effects on one's health. This includes the whole gamut of actions from not getting oneself into dangerous situations; everything from making sure you climb on something stable, to avoiding slipping on black ice, to not going to dangerous neighborhoods. While the probability of a serious event may be small, the effect of one occurring can potentially be catastrophic. As the saying goes, better to be safe than sorry. So it is always good advice to err on the side of caution and keep aware of potential danger.

RATIONAL SURVIVALISM: It certainly makes sense to prepare for possible future disasters so as to best mitigate the potential effects on one's health and survival, and there are certainly real near future threats which I discuss elsewhere on this website, but this should be reason rather than paranoia based. It always amuses me to see self styled survivalists going to great effort and expense to prepare for all sorts of low likelihood events without first correcting their often incredibly unhealthy personal lifestyles from which they are probably much more like to succumb. Stocking up on guns, ammo, and underground bunkers when they could increase their survival chances much more simply by eating a healthy diet, not drinking heavily or smoking, and not engaging in hostile confrontations with the powers that be. That's not real survivalism. Real survivalism is acting so as to maximize one's health and extend one's longevity in the face of all potential dangers, rather than just the threat of black helicopters landing invading UN troops! It's highly probable that most of typical survivalists will succumb to their own stupid life choices long before they have to use their guns or bunkers!

There is no question that there is plenty of irrationality and intolerance among the survivalist community. I was actually kicked off a couple of survivalist discussion groups simply for suggesting heresies such as these.