Essential Oils for the Heart

To get more ways on health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us

As always prevention is the key. Maintaining the condition of our heart is important, no matter if you are working with a healthy heart, or have had a stroke, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure. aromatherapy can help! Here are a few essential oil recipes to help keep your heart healthy:
Heart Care Blend
(reduces stress, improves circulation, nervous system and lowers high blood pressure)
To one tablespoon of carrier oil add:

2 drops Rosemary
2 drops Bergamot

Massage in the chest and heart area, throat and neck. Always working towards the heart. Pour oil blend into the bath.
Healthy Heart Blend
To one tablespoon carrier oil add:

1 drops Geranium
2 drops Bergamot
3 drops Clary Sage

Massage in the chest and heart area, throat and neck. Always working towards the heart....
[Read More ...]

Have Compassion for Your Overworked Doctor

The State of our Health Care System Today

I wrote a short news article for NDNR recently,about how much time physicians spend working within electronic health record (EHR) systems during their workday. I thought I'd rewrite it for the readers of the NaturalPath, because I think it gives valuable context to the state of our health care system today, and possibly help us find compassion in our hearts for physicians who belong to a system of medicine many of us view as problematic, or downright criminal. This is in no way meant as a justification for the lack of care often shown by our big pharma driven medical system, but a glimpse of the human aspect of that system.

How Much Time do you Actually Spend Talking to Your Doctor?

There's no doubt that physicians are overworked, and the manner in which many patients are seen is not conducive to caring for those patients; 6-10 minutes just isn't enough. But did you know that roughly half, that's right, 50% of a physician's workday, which is usually about 12 hours, consists of working within an electronic sea of charts and forms, and communications with other medical professionals through a non-verbal closed communication system. We call it EHR, or electronic health records, and it is the bane of most primary care physicians' work-life and contributes to burnout we see within the medical field in a major way. Most physicians are spending roughly 6 hours in EHR per workday, which includes time during clinic hours and after hours. And that's not all, a lot of this time (almost 50%) is spent performing clerical tasks that are not directly related to the patient. An additional hour and a half is spent emailing.

EHR Promotes Inefficient Digital Communication Instead of Face to Face Verbal Interaction

This information comes from a recent study looking at physician burnout. The study explains that EHR is a significant factor of physician burnout. The frustration around the required time for documentation, and order entry are huge time factors that give little in satisfaction. In addition, EHR promotes an inefficient and distracting communication interface that advocates digital communication instead of face to face verbal interaction.

How can EHR work for us, instead of us working for the EHR?

The message from the authors of this article was that solutions to common problems linked to physician burnout in primary care, such as proactive planned care, team-based care, and the sharing of clerical tasks, all require better thought about EHR system applications. Perhaps the question we will be asking in the future is how can EHR work for us, instead of us working for the EHR?

Everyone Suffers, Both Patients and Physicians

Most physicians went into medicine because they care about people, and want to help people get through illness, and be healthy. The bitter truth of what they find is that this is not the case at all. Everyone suffers; The patient and the doctor, when systems are utilized that do not support the underlying mission and purpose of an occupation.

ImageCopyright: megaflopp / 123RF Stock Photo

Node Smith, ND, is a naturopathic physician in Portland, OR and associate editor for NDNR. He has been instrumental in maintaining a firm connection to the philosophy and heritage of naturopathic medicine among the next generation of docs. He helped found the first multi-generational experiential retreat, which brings elders, alumni, and students together for a weekend camp-out where naturopathic medicine and medical philosophy are experienced in nature. Four years ago he helped found the non-profit, Association for Naturopathic ReVitalization (ANR), for which he serves as the board chairman. ANR has a mission to inspire health practitioners to embody the naturopathic principles through experiential education. Node also has a firm belief that the next era of naturopathic medicine will see a resurgence of in-patient facilities which use fasting, earthing, hydrotherapy and homeopathy to bring people back from chronic diseases of modern living; he is involved in numerous conversations and projects to bring about this vision.

The post Have Compassion for Your Overworked Doctor appeared first on NaturalPath.

Quick, Easy and Amazing Green Salad Ideas

An easy way to ensure you eat plenty of vegetables is to keep pre-made salad in the fridge in an airtight container.

Forget the store-made salads because they're so boring. You can certainly start with a lettuce mix, but add your own colorful pizzazz for a salad you're sure to reach for over and over again.

Note: If you make premade salad, store juicy vegetables like diced tomatoes separately and just add them when you're ready to eat.


Experiment with a wide variety of greens as you might be surprised at what you actually like. You can create different tastes and textures by mixing different types of lettuce. Try spinach, a spring mix or whatever you'd like. You can even add a bit of iceberg lettuce to create some extra crunch.

Vegetable Ideas:

There is no right or wrong here. Simply pick what you like, as much as you'd like and in any combination. Of course, some of these are technically fruit, but they're placed here because commonly think of them as vegetables.

  • Tomatoes

  • Carrots

  • Celery

  • Peppers in a variety of colors

  • Avocado

  • Broccoli

  • Cauliflower

  • Kernel corn

  • Asaparagus tips

  • Artichoke hearts

  • Cucumber

  • Zucchini

  • Eggplant

  • Radish

  • Cabbage

  • Bean sprouts

  • Alfalfa sprouts

  • Peas

  • Turnip

  • Kholrabi

  • Red onion

  • Chives

  • Beets

  • Squash

Fruits and Berries:

Add a little excitement with some sweet and colorful additions.

  • Strawberries

  • Blueberries

  • Blackberries

  • Raspberries

  • Watermelon

  • Cantaloupe

  • Honeydew

  • Mango

  • Papaya

  • Pineapple

Other Toppings:

Add these just before serving, but you can prepare them ahead of time and store them separately.

  • Bacon bits

  • Cooked ham or other thinly sliced meat

  • Sliced chicken breast

  • Fried chicken strips

  • Nuts

  • Sunflower seeds

  • Croutons

  • Fried capers

  • Shredded cheese of all kinds

  • Raisin

  • Hard boiled eggs

  • Cooked, cold beans

  • Water chestnuts

Have fun with your saladit's good for you!

The Importance of Omega 3s for Your Health

Scientists have established the effectiveness of Omega 3 in a number of health areas, including your Heart, Brain, Joints, Skin, Immune system, Vision, and Digestion.

Like any product on the market today there are 'good fish oils' and there are 'bad fish oils'! With a bad one you may be unwittingly introducing substances into your body that you DO NOT want such as Mercury and PCB's for example. We impose tougher standards on the purity of our fish oil than any other known manufacturer.

Our Omega-3 QH Ultra is an exclusive blend of omega 3 fish oils with high levels of DHA and EPA for extra strength, special ingredients for skin protection and repair, and CoQ10 Ubiquinol for heart and muscle health and cellular energy for over 40's

Learn more about Xtend-Life's Omega-3 QH Ultra now.

Why do we promote this?

Higher Risk of Death with Antidepressant Use

A recent study published in Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, has concluded that antidepressant use increases risk for all-cause mortality.1 It is generally known that most antidepressants work by affecting serotonin in the brain inhibiting reabsorption by neurons so its activity lasts longer. However, the exact mechanisms of these drugs serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), tricyclics (TCA)and other types are not specifically known. The effects that these drugs have on serotonin in other organs systems is even less clear.

All Major Organ Systems Use Serotonin

All major organ systems, from the gastrointestinal tract, liver, kidneys and heart, all use serotonin from the blood stream. The action that antidepressants have on blocking serotonin absorption in these organs could be part of the underlying cause of multiple organ systems not functioning properly, and ultimately an increase in the premature death seen associated with antidepressant use in the study.

Antidepressant Study

The study was a meta-analysis that looked at 17 different large studies; hundreds of thousands of people were included in the datasets. The findings showed that antidepressant users had a 33 percent higher chance of death than non-users, and a 14 percent increase risk of having a cardiovascular event. The data was insignificantly different between SSRIs and TCAs.


The conclusions by the researchers were that it may not be safe to be taking antidepressants while we still don't fully understand how they are working in the body. Roughly 1 in 8 Americans are currently taking a prescription antidepressant medication. These medications are often being prescribed by family physicians without a formal diagnosis of depression, because they are thought to be safe. This research undermines these assumptions and asks physicians to reevaluate the absolute need for the prescriptions they are writing.

  1. Maslej MM, Bolker BM, Russell MJ, et al. The Mortality and Myocardial Effects of Antidepressants Are Moderated by Preexisting Cardiovascular Disease: A Meta-Analysis. Psychother Psychosom. 2017;86(5):268-282.

ImageCopyright: fizkes / 123RF Stock Photo

Node Smith, ND, is a naturopathic physician in Portland, OR and associate editor for NDNR. He has been instrumental in maintaining a firm connection to the philosophy and heritage of naturopathic medicine among the next generation of docs. He helped found the first multi-generational experiential retreat, which brings elders, alumni, and students together for a weekend camp-out where naturopathic medicine and medical philosophy are experienced in nature. Four years ago he helped found the non-profit, Association for Naturopathic ReVitalization (ANR), for which he serves as the board chairman. ANR has a mission to inspire health practitioners to embody the naturopathic principles through experiential education. Node also has a firm belief that the next era of naturopathic medicine will see a resurgence of in-patient facilities which use fasting, earthing, hydrotherapy and homeopathy to bring people back from chronic diseases of modern living; he is involved in numerous conversations and projects to bring about this vision.

The post Higher Risk of Death with Antidepressant Use appeared first on NaturalPath.

Botanical of the Month Boneset

Annex Naturopathic

Boneset Botanical Medicine | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopaths

At our naturopathic clinic in the Annex we always get asked around cold and flu season what someone should take to wardthese off.

I think it's an appropriate time to write about a herb that is useful for the prevention and treatment viral infections.

We all know about echinacea and the fantastic benefits in the prevention of cold and flu, but one of the most underrated herbs that can also be used grows right in our forests and marshes.

Eupatorium perfoliatum (Boneset) is a beautiful three-branched, white flowered plant that grows along creeks and marshes and can grow up to 5 feet tall.

This plant is native to North America and flowers and matures from the mid-summer to fall.

It is one of the most coveted cold and flu remedy by Native medicine has been used extensively throughout Europe for these properties.

Parts Used: Aerial parts, tops and flowers. Best to harvest when it first blooms.

Uses for Boneset


Boneset is very bitter (due to the constituents, sesquiterpene lactones), and has a strong profile of medicinal constituents so is not typically eaten as food.

Colds, Flus and Fevers:

Boneset is considered a panacea for treating acute and viral infections by traditional native medicine.

It was historically used to treat bone-break fevers, fevers caused by Dengue fever so intense that it was described like pain as if your bones are breaking, hence the common name.

Since then it has been traditionally used to treat any fever-inducing infection - this property is called a diaphoretic, in which it makes a person sweat during a fever, allowing the fever to break.

This is a great remedy for those with intermittent fevers where the fever produced is never strong enough to actually kill off the infection and break, causing the a person to stay ill for longer periods of time.

Boneset is thought to induce a fever by activating the immune system through stimulating white blood cells to fight off the infection. This herb also exhibits anti-microbial and anti-malarial properties, but more research is needed to confirm these effects.

Despite the presence of only preliminary evidence, Boneset is considered one of the best treatments for cold and flu by traditional herbalists, with many case reports revealing the powerful activity of this herb against cold and flus.

This warrants better and more detailed investigation of this herb by researchers interested in herbal remedies in infections.

Boneset is a good alternative to the herb Echinacea as Echinacea only tends to be strongly effective when taken at the beginning stages of the flu, while Boneset works well for beginning stages as well as during the active, mid-flu stages.

Botanical Medicine Wild Boneset | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopaths

Boneset has also been traditionally used to treat arthritis and other inflammatory diseases.

A number of constituents present in Eupatorium perfoliatum have been found to exhibit strong anti-inflammatory activity by inhibiting the formation of a inflammatory factor, NF-Kappa-.

Boneset is taken in both tincture and tea/infusion forms.

Traditionally, hot infusions are taken for acute conditions when the patient needs to increase their body temperature for the fever to break and kill off the infection.

Then a cold infusion is taken as a tonic when the body needs to heal after the fever has broken.

The cold infusion in general is taken when the body is weak, making it a more suitable form for those feeling fatigued and pained.

As mentioned the book Medical Herbalism: Materia Medica and Pharmacy, this very dichotomy ofadministration represents the signature what the herb is meant to treat - dual symptoms (ie fevers and chills from infection).

The tincture is administered by drops as this herb is considered very strong and does not need to be given in high doses.


This herb is to be taken in small amounts - it has a powerful emetic effect, which makes a person vomit and does have laxative effect.

These effects were actually used medicinally by traditional herbalists to help a sick person detoxify, but is considered undesirable effect in modern medicine.

For this reason, never take this herb unless you're being monitored and treated by a healthcare professional who is familiar with the specific dosing of this herb.

If you're interested in learning more about how to use this effective herb during the upcoming cold and flu season, feel free to book an appointment.

If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1



  1. Hensel A al Eupatorium perfoliatum L.: phytochemistry, traditional use and current applications.J Ethnopharmacol. 2011 Dec 8;138(3):641-51.

  2. Herbapedia 2013. Silver Spring, Pennsylvania: The Herb Growing and Marketing Network, 2011

  3. Hoffman D. Medical Herbalism. Rochester, Vermont: Healing Arts Press, 2003.

  4. King, J. King's American Dispensatory. Ohio Valley Company, 1898

  5. Medical Herbalism: Materia Medica and Pharmacy. Boulder, Colorado: Bergner Communications, 2001.

To find additional ideas about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: nature doctors

Quarterly Community Update September 2017


The quarterlyCommunity Update is our chance togive you a heads up aboutAIP community news, podcasts, video series, and local in-person meet-up groups. If you have started a local support group on Facebook (no pages please), send the link This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will promote it!

Results Are In: First-Ever AIP Medical Study

After a year of waiting, the results of the first-ever medical study of the Autoimmune Protocol are out! And they are even better than we hoped. Read our summary here.Sneak peek: this proportion of participants with active IBD achieving clinical remission by week 6 [of the study] rivals that of most drug therapies for IBD.

All-New AIP Resources Page

We've been working hard on revamping our Resources page so we can better direct you to the books, resources and tools that have madeour AIP journeys easier. We're soexcited to unveil it!

Check out our list of the best kitchen tools, AIP cookbooks, podcasts, food purveyors, Hashi's resources, and so much more! Click here.

AIP Meetup Groups

Find a local networking group centered around the Autoimmune Protocol! Be advised that these are not disease-specific support groups, but are to facilitate in-person networking and support for those on or considering the Autoimmune Protocol. Each group has their own moderation and rules for membership, but generally they are private and supportive of those on their healing journeys. Know that this listing does not imply endorsement by Autoimmune Paleo, groups are not run by us, and your request to join and any information you may encounter in these groups is at your own risk.

If possible, please request membership in a group local to where you live - after all, the whole idea is to get together with others in your community who are facing similar challenges! Health coaches, practitioners, online marketers, and others trying to sell their products, know that many of these groups are well moderated and solicitation will not be tolerated. If there isn't a group near you, consider starting your own and letting us know about it on our contact page!


Western US:

Sacramento AIP Group

Portland AIP Group

Seattle AIP Group

SoCal AIP Group

NorCal AIP Group

Denver AIP Group

Boulder AIP Group

Fort Collins AIP Group

Alaska AIP Group

San Francisco Bay Area AIP Group

San Francisco AIP Group

San Diego AIP Group

Idaho AIP Group

Santa Cruz AIP Group

Northeastern US:

NE AIP Group


Upstate NY AIP Group

Philadelphia AIP Group

Pittsburgh/Southwestern Pennsylvania AIP Group

Vermont AIP Group

Connecticut AIP Group

Massachusetts AIP Group

Midatlantic AIP Group

Southeastern US:

Mid-Atlantic AIP Group

North + South Carolina AIP Group

Alabama AIP Group

Puerto Rico AIP Group

Atlanta AIP Group

East Tennessee AIP Group

NE Florida AIP Group

Midwestern US:

Ohio AIP Group

Chicago-Midwest AIP Group

Iowa AIP Group

Indianapolis/Central Indiana AIP Group

Minneapolis/St. Paul AIP Group

Kansas City AIP Group

St. Louis AIP Group

Oklahoma AIP Group

Southwestern US:


Central Texas AIP Group

Houston AIP Group

Arizona AIP Group

Northern New Mexico AIP Group


Canada AIP Group

Ottowa AIP Group

Vancouver B.C. AIP Group

Vancouver Island AIP Group


European AIP Group

Netherlands AIP Group

Belgium/Netherlands AIP Group

London AIP Group

UK AIP Group

Finland AIP Group

Germany AIP Group

Hungary AIP Group

France AIP Group

Spain AIP Group

AIP Info Europe

Bulgaria AIP Group

Israel AIP Group

Serbia/Bosnia/Croatia AIP Group

Croatia (and Neighboring Countries) AIP Group

Sweden AIP Group


Australia AIP Group

Egypt AIP Group

New Zealand AIP Group

South Africa AIP Group

Cayman Islands AIP Group

The post Quarterly Community Update September 2017 appeared first on Autoimmune Wellness.

Russia Hides Cancer Risks to Protect Its Role as the World's Asbestos Dealer

By Dr. Mercola

In the U.S., when people hear the word asbestos, the first thing that comes to mind is cancer. So, it may surprise you that this way of thinking is not universal, particularly in Russia where the asbestos industry is not only alive, but thriving. The term asbestos is used to describe six types of asbestos minerals: chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite, anthophyllite and actinolite - all of which are carcinogenic to humans.1

Asbestos, a naturally occurring mineral used worldwide in a variety of commercial products, is so toxic that even low-level exposure can cause lung cancer and other terminal diseases, including mesothelioma, a rare but aggressive form of cancer that can develop in the lungs, stomach or heart. Victims who contract this disease have a very low survival rate.2

Although many believe asbestos production is a thing of the past, the world's asbestos industry remains profitable in many nations including in the U.S., Russia, China and India. The featured film, an episode of VICE Reports titled, Why the Deadly Asbestos Industry Is Still Alive and Well, reveals that despite the health dangers, 2 million tons of asbestos are exported every year to the developing world, where it's highly unregulated and poses serious health risks.

In the film, VICE correspondent Milne Larsson travels to the world's largest asbestos mine in Asbest, Russia. Asbest, which is Russian for asbestos, lies on the eastern slopes of the Ural Mountains and is home to 70,000 people - nearly all of whom are financially dependent on the asbestos mine.

Russian Mining Town Showcases Its Pride for Asbestos

Asbestos, which occurs as a long thin fiber in the environment, kills more than 100,00 people each year and is banned in 60 countries.3 Yet, Russia remains the world's largest producer, exporting more than half of the world's asbestos supply. If asbestos is so toxic, why is it still being used? What health effects are workers and residents living near asbestos mines experiencing?

VICE reporter Larsson set out to answer these questions and more by traveling to Asbest, Russia, where she observed firsthand the mining industry's powerful influence over the city and its citizens. Seventy percent of the income in Asbest is dependent on the mine, she reports, which is owned by the Russian mining company Uralasbest. In Asbest, the asbestos industry is king.

The city's pride for the industry can be seen in large asbestos-promoting banners hung all over town. Asbest even has an asbestos-themed anthem and a monument made of asbestos, symbolizing the city's strange admiration for the deadly carcinogen. The first place Larsson visits is the asbestos mine, where half a million tons of asbestos are mined each year.

She is seen standing at the edge of the mine, which is about half the size of the island of Manhattan,4 wearing head-to-toe protective gear - what's legally required in the U.S. and Europe when exposed to asbestos.

Locals, on the other hand, are seen in plain clothes, marveling at the view of the mine as if it's their favorite pastime. The locals point and laugh at Larsson's hazmat suit, making light of what they perceive to be overly cautious attire. Are you not worried about the dust and asbestos fibers coming out of the mine? she asks. No, we're not worried about anything in general, they reply. Things happen to you only when you are afraid of them.

Russia Embraces Asbestos Despite Health Risks

Despite their remarks, the scientific literature overwhelmingly states that all levels of asbestos exposure may cause asbestos-related disease, and there is no safe level of exposure according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.5 It's clear that the people of Asbest are not afraid of the mine, however. In fact, it's viewed as a popular tourist attraction and a hot spot for taking wedding photos.

To showcase its long history with asbestos, the city has an asbestos history museum, which the VICE reporter visits to get a better handle on the community's relationship with the asbestos industry.

The historian tells Larsson that Russia's first asbestos depository was discovered in 1720 by a peasant named Safron Sagra, whose wife is said to have made mittens out of the mineral after he brought it home one night. According to the legend, the couple discovered the fireproof properties of asbestos after the mittens caught fire but did not burn.

News of the mineral's value quickly spread, and by 1918, all of the mines were nationalized and owned by the Russian government. Entire economies were soon built around the asbestos industry, which employs 38,500 Russians. Another 400,000 depend on the asbestos mines for their livelihood, according to The New York Times, which adds:6

Asbest is a legacy of the philosophy known as gigantism in Soviet industrial planning. Many cities wound up with only one, huge factory like this town's sprawling asbestos plant. The cities, known as monotowns, were an important engine of the economy.

A Russian government study counted 467 cities and 332 smaller towns that depend on a single factory or mine. A total of 25 million people out of Russia's population of 142 million people live in towns with only one main industry that cannot close, even if it is polluting.

Today, locals describe a layer of asbestos dust that covers everything from their homes to their vegetable gardens. Yet, many seem unafraid of the health risks of asbestos and instead have accepted the contamination as a way of life.

Good Luck Finding the Truth: Locals in Asbest Are Reluctant to Discuss Health Effects

Determined to speak with someone about the true health effects of asbestos, Larsson meets with a retired mine worker who says he is skeptical of the mineral, but admits it's impossible to know how many workers have been sickened by the mine. Factories are too proud to admit that, he says.

Discouraged by the locals' refusal to talk candidly about the dangers of asbestos, Larsson wonders whether physicians and officials in Russia are aware of the health risks posed to workers and residents living near asbestos mines. So, she visits the Ural Oncology Center in Yekaterinburg, Russia, to meet with oncologist Dr. Sergey Berezin.

Berezin says the most common types of cancer he sees are lung cancer in men and breast cancer in women, but he denies having patients sickened from asbestos. As if that weren't shocking enough, the oncologist admits that he completed his medical residency in the asbestos mining town and found the air to be quite satisfying.

He then leads Larsson to his office where he shows her decorations made from asbestos before stating that his sauna roof in the summer home he's owned for 30 years is made from asbestos. Larsson, whose face is frozen in shock, asks to speak to some of Berezin's patients, but he refuses. So, she heads to the local hospital in Asbest, but getting patients to talk negatively about asbestos proves difficult.

However, one women is heard saying: You won't find the real truth anywhere. Who will say? Everyone is afraid. It quickly becomes clear that no one in Asbest is willing to speak negatively about the mine. The whole town relies on the industry, says Larsson, adding that the mining company owns everything down to the schools, churches and even the soccer team.

World Health Organization Asbestos Researcher Has Industry Ties

Hoping to escape the industry's influence in Asbest, Larsson travels to Moscow to meet with the head of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, Dr. Evgeny Kovalevskiy, who is researching worker health in Asbest on behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO). When asked if it's dangerous to live next to an asbestos mine, he replies, Life is dangerous. It is hard to measure asbestos' role because the Sverdlovsk Region is nearby and is very industrial. They have serious ecological problems.

Larsson asks Kovalevskiy what his eight years of research has found about the health effects of asbestos, but he again dodges the question saying that like any epidemiological study, the final results will take years. Larsson wonders whether his reluctance to answer is a result of his alleged industry ties. In March 2013, a group of acclaimed scientists petitioned the WHO to end their relationship with Kovalevskiy over ethical questions surrounding his ties to the asbestos industry.

We call on you to terminate IARC's collaboration with the Scientific Research Institute of Occupational Health of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences (RAMS) and with Dr. Evgeny Kovalevskiy because of unethical and improper scientific conduct on their part - conduct which is incompatible with the standards expected of IARC or any reputable scientific agency.7

Developing World Faces an Epidemic of Asbestos-Related Disease

Russia is so protective of its asbestos industry that it has stopped recording mesothelioma as a separate type of cancer and is instead lumping it in with other diseases so that it's no longer identifiable, says Dr. Arthur Frank, professor and chair emeritus of environmental and occupational health at Drexel University. But the absence of data doesn't mean the absence of disease, he says, adding that the asbestos industry is using similar tactics as Big Tobacco in terms of concealing the industry's health risks.

These tactics seem to be working in countries like China and India, which rely heavily on asbestos for building insulation and materials and automotive parts. In India, the asbestos industry provides 300,000 jobs and is worth $2 billion.8 The nation is also the world's largest importer of asbestos, the majority of which it buys from Russia.

Frank predicts that the developing world is on the brink of an epidemic caused by asbestos-related diseases. While the U.S. is not immune to the dangers of asbestos, as it too has seen an epidemic of asbestos-related diseases, it's nothing like what we will see in the developing world, he says.

Thousands of American Products Made With Asbestos

Similar to Russia today, the U.S. once had a booming asbestos industry, mining 137,000 tons at its peak in 1973.9 Deemed the magic mineral, asbestos was used in thousands of American products. It was heavily used by the military to insulate and fireproof ships, tanks, aircrafts and vehicles. The military relied on the mineral so extensively that 33 percent of mesothelioma victims in the U.S. are military veterans.10

However, no one was more affected by the deadly mineral than the residents of Libby, Montana, where asbestos killed hundreds and sickened thousands. The city is home to one of America's worst man-made environmental disasters, notes the film. In 1919, companies began pulling vermiculite, which is often found alongside tremolite - a form of asbestos - from the mine in Libby, Montana. Known commercially as zonolite, vermiculite was used in a variety of construction materials including as insulation for homes and buildings.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that vermiculite was installed in more than 35 million American homes. Decades of mining vermiculite exposed workers and residents to toxic asbestos dust. The film shows Larsson traveling to Libby to speak with victims sickened by asbestos. I just think I've been cheated.

They should've warned the people in this town about the seriousness of it. They got away with murder, says Libby resident Don Munsel, who never worked in the mine but was exposed to asbestos dust carried in from his stepfather who worked in the mine.

Libby Residents Describe the Horror Caused by Asbestos

Larsson also talks with former mine workers Dean and Marilyn Norton who express anger and frustration with W.R. Grace, the company that owned the mine. As beautiful as this country is, it killed us, says Marilyn. I know it's going to kill me, and it's probably going to kill my kids and my husband too, she says, adding that it's really W.R Grace that's responsible. They knew.

The asbestos mined in Libby is a different kind than what's mined in Russia. However, studies show conclusively that all types of asbestos cause cancer. Asbestos is a criminal industry, says Nicholas Ashford, a professor at MIT and former chair of the National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety and Health.

Fifteen epidemiological societies say the asbestos industry should have been regarded as a hazard, he tells Larsson in the film. When you disregard worker and public health, you're committing murder, says Ashford. You can argue you don't know which worker you're murdering, but as a whole, the statistics are very clear.

Many American Products Still Contain Asbestos

Asbestos is banned in many countries, but the U.S. isn't one of them. While it's not as widely used as it once was, asbestos is permitted in many American products as long as it consists of less than 1 percent asbestos.11 Some of these products include gaskets, roofing and fireproofing materials.

In 1973, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency started banning asbestos-containing products. In 1989, the agency banned most asbestos-containing products under Section 6 of Toxic Substances Control Act. But in 1991, the rule was vacated by the courts. As a result, most of the original ban on the manufacture, importation, processing or distribution of asbestos products was overturned.

Asbestos-containing products that are still legal in the U.S. include clothing, pipeline wrap, vinyl floor tire, friction materials, roof coatings and brake blocks. Asbestos-containing products that are now banned in the U.S. include corrugated paper, rollboard, commercial paper, specialty paper and flooring felt.12 While the last asbestos mine closed in 2002, the U.S. still imports about 1,000 tons of asbestos, most of which comes from Brazil.13

Asbestos' Useful Properties Captivates Humans Throughout History

Throughout history, asbestos and its unique properties has captivated the attention of humans. Its original use dates back to the ancient Greeks, who valued the mineral for its fireproof properties. The word asbestos actually means indistinguishable in ancient Greek. The Greeks used the mineral in the wicks of their eternal flames, and wove the material into garments, napkins and table cloths, which they would throw into the fire and marvel at its unique ability to emerge clean and unburned.14

Despite its harmful properties, the mineral is still used all over the world. American homes built before 1980 still contain asbestos, which can be found in floor tiles, roofs, furnaces, plumbing, appliances, fireplaces and window caulking. People are often exposed when the fibers become dislodged over time due to normal wear and tear.

The U.S. is one of the only developed nations that has not completely banned asbestos. The mineral is prohibited in the EU, U.K. and Australia - with Canada next on the list to phase the mineral out completely by 2018. Attempts to ban asbestos in America have been squashed by the asbestos industry, which cites job losses and negative economic effects as reasons to keep the industry alive.

How to Protect Yourself Against Asbestos

Fortunately, there are ways to protect yourself against asbestos exposure. Those most often exposed to asbestos are construction workers who come across the material when working in homes or buildings where it was installed prior to today's regulations. If you suspect you've encountered asbestos, stop working and notify professionals. The safest way to handle asbestos is through a licensed contractor. However, if this isn't possible, taking the following steps can reduce your exposure:15

  • Wear protective gear including a suitable face mask

  • Use hand tools instead of power tools to reduce dust

  • Clean up as you go to prevent waste buildup

  • Use a Type H vacuum or wet rags to clean up; do not sweep up dust and debris

  • Wash before breaks and before going home

What You Need To Know About Taking Health Supplements

Annex Naturopathic

Taking Health Supplements Advice | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctor

Should everyone be taking health supplements?

This is something that we, as naturopathic doctors here in Toronto,get asked a lot about from our patients

Walking into the supplement section of any grocery, health food or drug store can be overwhelming to say the least.

The options are endless and the prices are ever increasing.

It's hard to keep track of what Dr. Oz or Dr. Google recommended.

Internet searches often give us expansive lists of contradictory information.

The Nutraceutical industry is rapidly growing and just as profit driven as pharmaceutical industry.

The following article will shed some light on how to approach supplementation in a critical and informed manner.

What are supplements?

In the true sense of the word, supplements are an addition of a macronutrient (protein, fat, carbohydrate) or micronutrient (vitamin or mineral) normally found in the diet.

Supplements can also be pharmaceutically synthesized molecules that are naturally occurring or built in the body (like GABA- a neurotransmitter or melatonin- a molecule involved in sleep).

Unlike drugs, whose components are synthesized and not found in the diet or naturally occurring within the body, supplements contain molecules which the body inherently knows how to absorb, metabolize and incorporate into physiological processes.

Drugs often change or inhibit a naturally occurring process, whereas supplementation corrects for deficiencies and optimizes inherent function.

What supplements should I actually be taking?

It depends. Each person has unique requirements based on individual factors and intended effect.

Most commonly, supplementation is indicated in cases of deficiency (common deficiencies include: iron, B12, vitamin D).

Symptoms vary depending on which nutrients are deficient. Deficiency can be caused by inadequate dietary sources or decreased absorption due to digestive dysfunction.

Many medications also deplete certain nutrients (the birth control pill for example, depletes vitamin B6). Many vitamins act as cofactors: molecules that make reactions happen- analogous to a catalyst in an engine.

As such, supplementation can also be used to up-regulate processes in the body.

For example, vitamin B6 is required for the synthesis of serotonin from the amino acid tryptophan.

Continuing with the car analogy, if we supplement with tryptophan, the gas, and B6, the catalyst, theoretically we should have increased serotonin- or a smoothly running car.

On the other (pharmaceutical) hand, selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs/antidepressants) work by altering receptors so that more serotonin remains available.

How do I know how much to take?

Like pharmaceuticals, you need to take specific dosages of supplements in order for them to have their intended therapeutic effect.

Furthermore, many supplements have misleading dosing information on their labels.

For example, the therapeutic value fish oil lies in its omega-3 content (EPA and DHA). A 1000 mg Jameson fish oil has 180 mg EPA and 120 DHA mg in one capsule where as a professional line has 600 mg and 400 mg respectively.

You would need to take at least 3 capsules of Jameson brand fish oil to equal 1 capsule of the professional line.

Are all supplements safe and free of side effects?

No. High doses of certain supplements can be toxic and dangerous.

For example, high doses of supplemental vitamin D can cause kidney damage, niacin (vitamin B3) even at low doses can cause significant vasodilation (flushing), magnesium and vitamin C can cause diarrhoea, iron often causes constipation and zinc can induce nausea and vomiting.

Do You Need Health Supplements Advice | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctor

Can I get everything I need from a healthy diet?

It depends.

Assuming that a healthy diet is rich in fruits and vegetable, healthy fats (nuts and fish), and proteins (grains, legumes and meats) you may still fall short of certain nutrients due to inherent nutrient depletion in soil and decreased availability of certain foods.

Additionally, when supplements are prescribed at high dosages to enhance a specific function, it would be near impossible to achieve equal intake of that constituent through food alone.

For example, a dose of 4000 mg of vitamin C would require consumption of 80 oranges.

Does Vitamin D comes from the Sun?

Vitamin D doesn't actually come from the sun.

However, exposure to the sun (specifically UVB light radiation) converts a precursor molecule to the active form of vitamin D.

This conversion happens subcutaneously (just underneath the skin) and requires sunlight.

The amount of skin exposed to the sun is proportional to how much vitamin D our skin makes. How much skin do Canadians expose to the sun in the winter?

Bottom line

Most supplementation should be individualized and supervised to have true therapeutic value.

Self prescribing can be ineffective and dangerous.

All supplements are not created equal.

When comparing brands, look at the amount of content in milligrams in each capsule.

For Canadians, supplementing vitamin D in the winter is appropriate in almost all circumstances

If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1


To discover more ideas on health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: toronto naturopathic clinic

5 Tips For Developing A Healthy Autumn Routine

Annex Naturopathic

Healthy Autumn Routine Tips | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctors

Hello, and Happy September!

As a naturopathic doctor in Toronto, seasonal shifts are factors that Itake into account when helping patients develop healthy routines.

Theses seasonal shifts can't be ignored as they have a real effect on the body and the health of each individual.

As we say goodbye to summer, it's time to welcome the structure and seasonal shifts September brings.

At this time of year it can be difficult to:

1. Sleep

Prioritize restful sleep.

That means going to bed a little earlier, and saying no to that last episode on Netflix.

Waking up refreshed sets the stage for a great day.

Check out our top 5 tips for improving sleep quality to help you make the most of your time in bed.

2. Hydrate

Start off your day with a BIG glass of water. Aim for 2 litres throughout the day.

Not a big fan of water? Try putting lemon or cucumber slices in it for a little bit of flavour.

Remember - coffee and alcoholic beverages are dehydrating. Switch out that second cup of coffee for a big glass of water!

3. Meal Prep

Planning your meals ahead of time is definitely easier in theory than practice.

A good start to making is easy to meal plan for the week is thinking of your 3 favourite go-to meals, and making sure you have all the ingredients on hand.

Freeze leftovers in singles servings to be warmed up on days when you don't have time to cook.

Exercise for a Healthy Autumn | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctors

4. Exercise

Start with short and sweet when it comes to exercise.

A half hour at the gym or walking briskly is enough when you're getting back into the groove.

Schedule in your exercise at the beginning of the week and have your gym clothes ready the night before.

5. Set healthy boundaries with technology

Turn that gosh-darn phone off!Smartphones are very stimulating to the brain and can dysregulate the body's stress response.

Give your brain a break from your phone daily.

You'll have more time to tackle the other 4 items on this list!

Seek out professional help

For any reasonyou need some help, come see one of the Naturopathic Doctor's at Annex Naturopathic Clinic - they will help you figure out a gameplan together!

If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1


To read additional information about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: holistic doctors

Exploring the Menstrual Cycle: Common Concerns & How Birth Control Methods Work

Annex Naturopathic

Menstrual Cycle Facts | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Womens Health

Women often have many concerns surrounding their menstrual cycle.

Many women seek interventions and guidance to avoid pregnancy.

Other women may need support conceiving.

Some women struggle with painful, long periods, while other women go months to years without a period at all.

Needless to say, there are many physiological, anatomical and biochemical factors that contribute to a healthy menstrual cycle.

Too add to the complexity, there is variability in what is considered normal amongst women's menstrual cycles.

Therefore, an individualized approach to care is essential in determining what factors may be problematic- and- what type of support will create the conditions for optimal women's health.

The naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic excel in helping women understand and regulate their cycles naturally.

This is especially helpful given that with conventional medicine, options may be limited to synthetic hormonal contraceptives.

The birth control pill is an effective form of contraception, however, it may not always be in line with patient preference or address the root cause of a women's menstrual concerns.

Common menstrual cycle concerns and why they may be happening

  • Heavy period flow which may be caused by a relativeexcess in estrogen.

  • A woman does not get her period. Lack of menstrual cycles can be the result of various mechanisms.

  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome. Periods are infrequent, often spaced out longer than one month apart. A combination of factors which includes elevated testosterone and high blood sugar and high insulin which reduces ovulation (egg release) and frequency of menstruation.

  • Dysmenorrhea: painful periods which may be caused by a general inflamed state and a relative excess of estrogen.

Differentiating contraceptive methods

  • The Oral Contraceptive Pill. Most are estrogen and progestin containing. Ovulation is inhibited because of the synthetic hormones. The pill also allows for thicker cervical mucus which makes the the uterus impenetrable to sperm. The placebo pills (at the end of the pill pack) cause uterine lining to shed due to drop in hormones in the body.

  • Transdermal Patch: Same mechanism as pill. The patch is worn for 3 weeks and taken off for one week.

  • Nuva Ring. Same mechanism as the oral contraceptive pill. The ring is put in for 3 weeks, removed for one week.

  • Mirena IUS/ Jaydess IUD (Intaruterine Device/System). This device sits in the uterus, and a low continuous dose of progestin is secreted. Ovulation may or may not occur. The progestin thickens the cervical mucus (which makes the uterus impenetrable to sperm), and the presence of the IUD makes the uterus inhospitable to fertilization and implantation.

  • Copper IUD. There are no hormones secreted by this IUD. It works by making the uterus inhospitable to fertilization and implantation.

  • Barrier methods. Prevent entry or sperm.

  • Fertility awareness. This involves consciously tracking the timing of the menstrual cycle combined with temperature and cervical mucous monitoring.

Birth Control Concerns | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Womens Health

Factors that affect your cycle and contraceptive methods

  • When cortisol, the stress hormone is high, the hypothalamus in the brain sends signals to decrease sex hormone production.

  • Gastrointestinal disturbances. Estrogen is recycled back into circulation in the gut by healthy gut bacteria. When there is a significant change in gut flora- which can happen because of antibiotic use, or gastrointestinal infection- the hormone balance can shift and the menstrual cycle may to.

REMEMBER: The best contraceptive method

  • Is the one you use consistently.

  • Encourages enjoyable sex and reduces stress.

  • Resonates with you and has minimal side affects.

For any reason you have concerns regarding your menstrual cycle, birth control methods or fertility, come see one of the NDs atour clinic.

If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1


To read more information about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: toronto naturopathic doctors

Cheesy Broccoli Chicken Zucchini Boats

Recipe From Ruled.Me

Stuffed vegetables are popular because they pack essential
nutrients into one enticing package, with bell peppers being the most commonly
used base ingredient. However, using bell peppers all the time can become
mundane, which is why it's important to mix things up every now and then to keep
discovering new flavors.

This recipe, which was submitted by Craig Clarke of Rule.Me,
uses zucchini as the base vegetable. This results in a crunchy texture that
manages to hold all the ingredients together, and is a great counterpart to the
melted cheese. It's a mouthwatering dish that anyone will surely enjoy.


6 ounces of roasted, organic
free range-chicken
, shredded

10 ounces of organic zucchini (2 large
zucchinis, hollowed out)

1 cup of organic broccoli

2 tablespoons of raw, grass fed butter

3 ounces of organic cheddar cheese, shredded

2 tablespoons of organic sour cream

1 stalk of green onion

Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Heat
    the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and cut the zucchinis in half,
  2. Using
    a spoon, scoop out most of the zucchinis until you're left with shells that
    are about 1/2 to 1 centimeter thick.
  3. Pour 1
    tablespoon of melted butter into each zucchini boat, season with salt and pepper,
    and place them in the oven for about 20 minutes.
  4. While the
    zucchinis are cooking, shred your chicken and use 6 ounces only, leaving
    the rest for other recipes. Cut up the broccoli florets into small pieces
    and combine both with the sour cream. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Once
    the zucchinis are done, take them out and add your chicken and broccoli
  6. Sprinkle
    cheddar cheese and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the
    cheese is melting and browning.
  7. Garnish
    with chopped green onion and enjoy with more sour cream or mayo!

Zucchini Is a Healthy Hull for the 'Boat'

Zucchini serves as the boat for this recipe. It's a great foundation
ingredient because it retains its crunchiness and shape, even after baking. It makes
the dish easier to eat, too. Furthermore, zucchini is a healthy vegetable on
its own right because of the following nutrients:


Fiber should be an integral component
of your daily diet, because it can help maintain proper digestive health. One
of its main benefits is the reduced risk of constipation by pulling water into
your stools,
allowing them to move faster through your intestines. It can also help prevent
excess weight gain, because your stomach feels full longer. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;


Zucchini contains lutein and
zeaxanthin, which are important in maintaining eye health, as they may reduce
your risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. In addition, these
antioxidants may help eliminate free radicals throughout your body, as well as
protect your blood vessels against atherosclerosis. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;


Potassium is an important mineral
that plays a vital role in cardiovascular health because of its vasodilating
properties. This means that potassium can help your blood vessels relax to
allow blood to flow more freely. As a result, it may reduce your risk of
cardiovascular diseases, such as stroke and hypertension. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;


Zucchini possesses a variety of B
vitamins, namely folate, B1, B2, and B3. These nutrients are crucial for energy
production by helping your body properly metabolize protein, fats and
carbohydrates. They're also important for helping maintain proper nervous,
brain and cardiovascular function. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;

When Eating Chicken, Always Purchase Organic and Free-Range

Chicken is one of the most popular meats consumed around the
world. From soups
to sandwiches, chicken can be used in just about any meal you can think of.

According to research, chicken can play an important role in
your diet, particularly in meeting your daily requirements for protein, the
building block for your muscles. Aside from this, chicken meat is rich in vitamin
, which can help optimize calcium absorption and bone strength.

When purchasing chicken, always choose cuts that are both organic
and free-range. Chickens raised in concentrated
animal feeding operations (CAFOs)
are typically injected with large amounts
of antibiotics. Over time, this causes the bacteria in the poultry to develop
resistance to the drugs, creating a haven for foodborne illnesses.

Free-range, on the other hand, refers to a farming method
that allows chickens to roam freely throughout the land to forage for their own
food. This results in healthier chickens and eggs because they don't eat
manufactured feeds.

Add Broccoli to Your Foods to Increase the Nutritional Profile

Rounding out the core ingredients of this recipe is
broccoli, a cruciferous vegetable that can be considered a superfood because it
may help reduce your risk of diseases such as osteoarthritis, Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;

high blood pressure, mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:
minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";

kidney disease mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:
minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";

and diabetes. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;

Broccoli may even lower your risk of cancer, according to a
study published in PLoS One. Researchers suggest that sulforaphane, a compound
unique to cruciferous greens, turns on genes that can help prevent the
development of cancer while turning off the ones responsible for spreading. Calibri;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin;mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;

About the Blog

was created by Craig Clarke, a blogger who originally struggled with weight
problems. The website not only focuses on the ketogenic diet as a way to lose
weight, but as a lifestyle that can improve your quality of life. It contains dieting
tips, strength and endurance exercises and various recipes for people who are
struggling with their weight and nutritional deficiencies.