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Vol 1. Issue 5. May 2015 • `100

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Dr MUKESH BATRA The homeopathic Agaricus personality Dr CLARA-LOPEZ AMAYA Homeopathy: Extraordinary medicine PLUS

A breath of fresh, healthy air PS: The heady, brainy nutrient Goodness of zucchini Shilpa Shetty’s wellness mantra

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Editorial Advisory Board Chairman| Dr Mukesh Batra Vice-Chairman| Dr Akshay Batra Editor & Publisher Dr Rajgopal Nidamboor rajgopal.nidamboor@homeopathyandyou.com Assistant Editor Kavita Nadkarni Head-Sales & Marketing Kiran Joshi Manager-Marketing J Chaitanya Kumar chaitanya.kumar@homeopathyandyou.com Contributing Writers Maneka Gandhi, New Delhi, India Dr Richard Firshein, New York, US Kerry Dulin, Michigan, US Nelressa Stallings, New Jersey, US Alan Jones, Wiltshire, UK Ambika Shukla, New Delhi, India Radhanath Swami, US/India Badrinath Durvasula, Mumbai, India Ruby Lilaowala, Mumbai, India Dr Preeti Mandawewala, Mumbai, India Amita Quenim, Goa, India Ryan Harrison, Los Angeles, US Vinesh Sukumaran, Bengaluru, India Eusebio Jason Fernandes, Goa, India Kiron B Shenoy, Colombo, Sri Lanka Dr Clara Lopez - Amaya, Mississauga, Canada Dr Joseph Kellerstein, Canada Dr Paul Callinan, New South Wales, Australia Design HB Design Pvt Ltd Subscriptions subscriptions@homeopathyandyou.com Website: www.homeopathyandyou.com E: editorial@homeopathyandyou.com Tel: 022-3367 1200 Fax: 022-3027 1415 Printed and published by Rajgopal Nidamboor for and on behalf of Dr Mukesh Batra, 33, Maker Towers-H, Cuffe Parade, Mumbai - 400 005 and printed by him at Parksons Graphics Private Limited, 12 Todi Estate, Behind Post Office, Sun Mill Compound, Lower Parel, Mumbai - 400 013. Editor & Publisher: Rajgopal Nidamboor © All Rights Reserved. Reproduction, in any manner, without prior written permission prohibited. Disclaimer: Homeopathy & You is committed to providing useful information on homeopathy, health and wellness. However, its content is not intended to provide medical advice or diagnosis for individual problems, or inferred to be a substitute for professional medical guidance. It is imperative for readers to consult their doctor/healthcare professional or therapist, prior to starting any treatment, or practice, or attending to any questions thereto. The opinions expressed by writers and columnists are their own. They do not, in any way, or manner, reflect the views of the publisher, editor, or company.

6 5 Letters 6 Focus: Homeopathy and cancer: Holistic healing

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Homeopathic ‘Sunsigns: Know your personality; know your remedy. Dr Mukesh Batra distils the homeopathic Agaricus, this month

17 Medical Marvels: Case reviews from Dr Joseph Kellerstein

20 How Homeopathy Helped Me 21 Q&A: Doctor’s Orders 22 Quintessence: Homeopathy: Extraordinary medicine

30 What Lies Beneath: Homeopathy: New-age medicine

33 Home[e]o Truths: The ‘pharma’ context of homeopathy

37 Living Well: Breath of fresh air 41 Water and weight loss 58 Fitness Quotient 59 Pot-Pourri 56 Health Happenings 60 Goodness of zucchini 61 Read. Watch. Listen. Explore 62 Celeb Fitness: Shilpa Shetty

22 COLUMNS

44 Good For You: Dr Richard Firshein 46 Fightning Fit: Kerry Dulin 48 Whole & Soul: Radhanath Swami 49 P  oise & Balance: Preeti Mandawewala

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Life Coach: Vinesh Sukumaran

55 Mixed Bag: Ruby Lilaowala HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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HOMEOPATHY: EVIDENCE IS... IT WORKS I was a dedicated scientist about to begin a PhD in neuroscience when, out of the blue, homeopathy bit me on the proverbial bottom. That turning point is etched in my mind. A woman I’d known my entire life told me that a homeopath had successfully treated her when several months of conventional treatment had failed. As a sceptic, I scoffed, but was nonetheless a little intrigued. I interrogated her about every detail of her diagnosis, previous treatment, and time scales. Scientists are supposed to make unprejudiced observations; then, draw conclusions. As I thought, I was left with the highly uncomfortable conclusion that homeopathy appeared to have worked. I had to find out more. So, I started reading about homeopathy, and what I discovered shifted my world for ever. Now, as a qualified, experienced homeopath, it is ‘science’ that is biting me on the bottom. I know homeopathy works, not only because I’ve seen it with my own eyes countless times, but also because scientific research confirms it. Yet, I keep reading reports in the media saying that homeopathy doesn’t work, and that scientific evidence doesn’t exist for it. The facts, it seems, are being ignored. 142 randomised control trials [the gold standard in medical research] comparing homeopathy with placebo or conventional treatment have been published in peer-reviewed journals — 74 were able to draw firm conclusions. 63 were positive for homeopathy and 11 were negative. There are also experiments showing that homeopathic Thyroxine can alter the rate of metamorphosis of tadpoles into frogs, that homeopathic Histamine can alter the activity of white blood cells, and that under the right conditions, homeopathic sodium chloride [Natrum Muriaticum] can be made to release light in the same way as normal sodium chloride. The idea that such highly-diluted preparations are not only still active, but retain characteristics of the original substances, may seem impossible, but these kinds of results show it’s a demonstrable fact. Surely, science should come into its own here — solving the riddles of the world around us, pushing the frontiers of knowledge. At least, that is the science I fell in love with. More of a puzzle to me now is the blinkered approach of ‘sceptics’ who continue, despite increasing evidence, to deny what is in front of them. In the last few years, there has been much propaganda and misinformation circulated, much of it heralding the end of homeopathy, yet the evidence shows that interest in complementary and alternative medicine [CAM] is growing. — Rachel Roberts’ opinion epistle culled from The Guardian, UK

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HOMEOPATHY & CANCER

HOLISTIC HEALING Homeopathy is mind-body, holistic medicine. It focuses on the individual — not just the disease, cancer, in isolation. This is in sharp contrast to conventional or allopathic treatment, which primarily looks at the individual, or patient, in compartments, or segments — not as one, unified whole.

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— or, initial — site can spread, or metastasise, ancer has diabolical notations — so throughout the body, the disease per se much so, its mere mention casts a represents a group of more than one hundred cascading, sledgehammer effect on different diseases — all of them highlighted by one’s psyche. In actual terms, cancer is a group uninhibited, anomalous growth of cells. of cells — usually derived from a single cell — Sometimes, cancer can affect and spread to that has lost its normal control mechanism. By Dr MUKESH the lymph nodes — tiny, bean-shaped structures The consequence is unfettered cell growth. BATRA that filter the flow of lymph, an important part The malignant form of cancer cells — or, the of the body’s immune system. Clusters of lymph treacherous type — develops from any tissue nodes are sited in different parts of the body — the neck, within any organ. As they grow and multiply, they the groin, and armpits. form a mass of cancerous tissue. The mass, as you’d know, is called a tumour, which can invade and destroy CAUSES normal adjacent tissues. Yet, it may be mentioned that Trying to ‘crack’ what causes cancer is tantamount to although the term ‘tumour’ often refers to abnormal searching for a needle in a haystack. The factual cause growths or mass, it may not necessarily be cancerous. of cancer is subject to conjecture — one may, for the This is because non-cancerous, or benign, tumours sake of convenience, think of substances that are known grow too, but they do not spread to other parts of the to cause cancer. For example, tobacco. Substances that body. They are usually not life-threatening. Malignant cause cancer are called carcinogens. Sounds simple; tumours, however, not only grow, they also invade actually, it is not. Because, it is often easier said than other tissues in the body. Nevertheless, it must be done to prove which substances cause or don’t lead to remembered that some forms of cancer, like blood cancer, experts often attribute to the fact that cancer cancer [leukaemia], do not form tumours. results from a complex interaction of genetic and Cancer can, as you’d know, begin almost anywhere environmental factors, not just a solitary hazard. Such in the body. While cancerous cells from the primary

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factors may be external and internal. The former include lifestyle indiscretions — smoking, chewing tobacco, alcohol overuse, obesity etc. Environmental factors that may have a say in cancer are exposure to radiation and chemicals, including viral and bacterial infections that can often injure cells and wilt the immune system. As far as internal factors are concerned, the origin of cancer may be related to our genes — something that is inherited. You may also further blame genetic mutations and hormonal exposure — e.g., oestrogen — for the onset of the dreadful disease. The only succour for those who wish to sound the alarm bell, and scout for that scary cancer ‘link’ in the family, experts say, is 5-10 per cent probability of cancer being hereditary. To simplify the equation — a person may have inherited a gene from someone in the family. This makes one more likely to develop cancer; yet, the fact is most people do not develop inherited forms of cancer. Cancer may actually develop due to the genes getting dented by viruses, chemicals, sunlight, or tobacco abuse. Called acquired mutations, genetic modifications are slow in onset. It takes several years before full-blown cancerous cells develop. SIGNS & SYMPTOMS Cancer can lead to a complex mix of symptoms. Symptoms may be both subtle and apparent. Some symptoms — or, what are often called warning signs — are best detected by a specialist. There are also symptoms that develop only after the disease progresses — they are not often helpful in the early detection of cancer. You would also need to evaluate symptoms like nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue, and vomiting, as a consequence of treatment, or a probable cautionary message. While some symptoms occur with almost all cancer types, there are others that are specific, especially when the disease is growing. It is ideal to summon screening programmes for early detection and diagnosis of cancer. The reason is simple and insightful — the earlier the disease is detected, the more useful the treatment outcome is expected to be. Some of the important symptoms of cancer are — • Weight loss • Weakness • Night sweats • Loss of appetite, or anorexia; recurring nausea or vomiting • A recent change in bowel habits — alternating between constipation and diarrhoea • Blood in urine. Blood in stool — visible, or detectable • Abrupt depression • Recurrent fever • Persistent, long-standing cough • Change in the size or colour of a mole; or, change in a skin ulcer [that does not heal] • Puffed-up lymph nodes • Constant pain.

PROGRESSION Cancer cells develop from healthy cells. The process — called transformation — is as complex as the disease itself. The first stride, where cancer cells grow from healthy cells, is termed as initiation. During the progress, a change in the cell’s genetic material, especially in the DNA, and sometimes in the chromosomal structure itself, prompts the cell to become cancerous. This may happen spontaneously; contextually, it is also brought about by genetic mutations and/or carcinogens — chemicals, tobacco, viruses, radiation, and sunlight. It must, however, be remembered that there are no set rules for the development of the disease. Also, not all cells are vulnerable to carcinogens. What makes cells fallible is a genetic flaw, not to speak of chronic, physical abnormality. The rest is catastrophe exemplified. PREVENTION Research acknowledges that about one-third of all deaths from cancer can be prevented. Not by way of sophisticated preventative methods, but through simple practices — like lifestyle measures, such as balanced diet, reducing weight, if one is obese, and physical activity, or exercise. Another important resolve is giving up smoking. It is, quite simply, the most important thing one could do to reduce cancer risk. It is also a call one should take, even though not all types of cancer are preventable, but avoiding the risk factors is more than worth a good try to lower the risk of developing the disease. In addition, risk factors such as age, or ethnicity, cannot be controlled. The emphasis on risk factors is HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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often ingrained in us to identify who among us may be at higher risk of developing cancer. Understanding your risk for cancer is important. People who have close relatives with cancer, or close relatives, who have died from cancer, especially at a young age, may be at risk. For example, a woman whose mother or sister had breast cancer is twice as likely to develop breast cancer, than a woman who does not have such a family history. People who have a ‘definitive’ history of cancer may benefit from screening tests at an early age, or on a more frequent basis. People with a known genetic syndrome in the family may consider genetic testing. Your doctor can help assess your risk of developing cancer. In certain cases, the risk of developing cancer, or preventing recurrence, may be achieved by using certain natural, therapeutic substances that lower the chance of developing cancer. This is called chemoprevention. They merit a try. It would also benefit you to speak, to a dietician/nutritionist as to what plan of natural/supplemental preventive action suits your needs best. IMMUNE RESPONSE The human immune system is one of the finest engineering marvels man never made — it just happened through natural [r]evolution. The immune system is supposed to respond to any activity that echoes abnormality, in any form; it often destroys anomalous activity even before it spreads. Cancer, experts point out, is likely to progress when the immune system is altered or impaired, especially in conditions such as AIDS. It may also affect people who are receiving immunosuppressive conventional drugs, or suffer from certain autoimmune diseases, like lupus. Cancer can affect people in their old age, because the immune system does not function like how it did when one was younger. Also, a normal or optimally functional immune system does not preclude cancer — cancer can pass through the system’s defensive watchtowers, and generate the disease.

The treatment of cancer is presumably successful when the disease is diagnosed before it has spread. This is the greatest difficulty. However this may be, experts testify that for many types of cancer, regular screening tests may be a useful bet, if not totally dependable, to detect the disease in its early stage. At the moment, screening tests are available for cancer of the breast, colon, rectum, cervix, prostate, testes, mouth, and skin. Screening tests for other cancers, such as lung and ovary, are currently being perfected. Besides, some simple, or basic, tests like self-examination for breast, skin, and testicular cancers, among others, are also quite handy to grasp the cancer evil by its tentacles. The idea of screening tests for people at high risk, which your doctor may be able to assess, need not be over-emphasised. It must be practiced. TESTS There are a number of tests to diagnose cancer and also unearth how far the disease has progressed. Some tests can also give valuable inputs on the actual attributes of treatment plans in a given case. Tests for diagnosis can be simple laboratory tests, or X-ray/ imaging. The test is selected depending on the type of cancer suspected; it will also include symptoms, age, and medical condition, besides results and/or analyses obtained from other tests. BIOPSY & IMAGING TESTS Biopsy is a significant test used to detect cancer. This test involves the removal of the tumour in toto, or part, and examining it to determine if cancer cells are present. There are different kinds of biopsies. Besides X-ray and imaging tests, like CAT, PET, and bone scan, ultrasound, MRI and endoscopy, are also used to determine whether the cancer has spread to other areas in the body. In addition, these tests are essentially used to evaluate the size and location of the tumour — depending upon the medical expert’s reading of the situation and modalities involved. However, it may be mentioned that imaging tests alone are not conclusive; they are also not precise to diagnose cancer.

DETECTION & SCREENING LABORATORY TESTS These tests are conducted on a sample of blood, urine, and other body fluids. The most common test is the complete blood count [CBC], which measures the components of the blood, including white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. Blood tests are often used to monitor possible side-effects of cancer treatment, viz., anaemia and infection. Specific laboratory tests are often used to make treatment decisions. There are also specialised tests that are employed to determine whether the cancer has made a comeback, following treatment. STAGING The process of describing the size and location of the tumour and/or whether the cancer has spread to other

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deficiencies to trigger the onset of cancer in certain individuals. More importantly, there is the open danger of toxic exposure to environmental pollutants, contaminated water, food additives and hormonal imbalances — which may cumulatively lead to increased risk of cancer.

parts of the body is called staging. This is essential to determine the choice of therapy and also ascertain a person’s recovery prospects. Staging is referred to in terms of I, II, III, and IV. The lower stage of the disease is usually associated with a better recovery status. The only hitch is staging cannot be used to forecast how long a patient would live with cancer. The main objective of staging is to establish information about a person’s cancer to evaluate better treatment options — options that would be most beneficial to the patient. It may also be mentioned that a person may be diagnosed with stage zero [0] cancer. The label would only signify that the disease is limited to the place where it originated and has — as yet — not marched into any of the surrounding structures. Stage 0 is also named cancer in situ. To cite an example — ductal carcinoma in situ of the breast, which has not invaded structures in the vicinity. There is a glut of general, specific and preventative information — right from advocating the use of diets rich in antioxidants — such as fruits and vegetables — to early detection of cancer. Yet, not much information has percolated at the grassroots level, although efforts to nab the cancer ‘bug’ early have expanded in their scope, thanks to technological advance. This includes screening, such as prostate specific antigen [PSA] test, pap smears, mammograms, and so on. In addition, the use of non-invasive and safe infrared technology, or thermography, has enabled us to spot suspicious cancer cells, up to ten years prior to the development of breast cancer. The big question: is all of this enough to battle the various forms of cancer before they raise their ugly heads? The answer is no. The fact actually is cancer prevention or ‘early’ recognition strategies are keyed to the crusade of avoiding tobacco use, smoking, sun-bathing and reducing excess fat, when one is on the higher end of the weighing scale. Yet, the reality is smoking, for example, continues to be a nuisance in several communities, despite the fact that several nations have banned its use in public. Worse still, passive smoking is a big cancer risk. In addition, it may be possible for certain nutritional

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GENE GLITCH It is suggested that an over-expressed cancer gene [oncogene] ‘triggers’ cancer in certain instances — more so, when there is a strong family history of the malady. Besides, there are some forms of non-familial cancers, where environmentally-induced mutations provoke the disease state. When such a sequel happens, certain genetic anomalies tend to build up. It is a matter of time, thereafter, for the gene expression to change. The next level is calamitous, as the disease begins to get a firm foothold and intensifies with diabolic intent. Notwithstanding the gloom, it is yet possible to prevent cancer, even though its incidence differs from one population to the other; or, affects one more than the other. In Japan, for instance, there has traditionally been a high incidence of gastric cancer, unlike the US, where the incidence of colon cancer is high. Ironically, Japanese immigrants, in the US, have seen a dramatic change in the pattern. Researchers say that this could be due to a change in dietetic habits [from soy to Western diet], but not necessarily genetics. Besides, it is also altering lifestyles, as research suggests, that has brought about such a palpable change. The implication is obvious; also avoidable. ACHIEVABLE PROSPECT Though there is no foolproof plan, with which one can prevent cancer, one practical way of doing it, perhaps, is by asking the cells in our body not to divide. This is, of course, a gigantic task. Cell division is far too complex than any other composite entity known to us. Research, therefore, suggests that it would be practical if one sticks to a regimen that lowers the risk of cancer — this includes taking good care of one’s health, eating a balanced diet, with 4-5 daily servings of fruits and vegetables, taking appropriate nutritional supplements, doing exercise, yoga and meditation, and, most importantly, giving up, or not smoking, or avoiding alcohol. The catch, again, is all of this is no security, or insurance cover, yet it is certainly an achievable plan of action, when augmented with holistic homeopathic treatment and integrative medicine — along with lifestyle changes, which works well, without side-effects — than accepting the idea that cancer is something we have learnt to expect, if not accept. HEALING WITH HOMEOPATHY Homeopathy is mind-body, holistic medicine. It focuses on the individual that presents with illness — and, not merely the illness in isolation. In other words, it looks at the individual, or patient, through two lenses. One, to


perceive their complete health and illness picture; and, two, to differentiate what makes each of us as unique and as different as our fingerprint, or signature. Homeopathy aims to evaluate, analyse and understand these two unique features, while focusing at different levels of reactions, or responses, in the individual. This is in sharp contrast to conventional or allopathic treatment, which only looks at the individual or patient in compartments, or segments — not as one, unified whole. To treat homeopathically, one needs to know how healthy or ill one is or was. This will enable the professional homeopathic physician to determine what each individual’s symptoms signify and what to expect from homeopathic treatment. Homeopathy looks at the big and small picture and this, as we all know, is not too difficult to understand. Besides, it’s rightly said that it’s all in the mind. Without clarity of mind, everything else is beside the point. This holds good for emotional pain too — it can be as strong as physical pain, or even more powerful. After the mind, come the vital organs. You cannot feel, think, or do anything if you did not have a brain, or heart, lungs, or liver. This is reason why our body tries to convey its problems at the most superficial level — if not at the deepest plane, to begin with. This is also reason enough why the body aims to heal itself, naturally. This is again what homeopathy strongly relates to and aims at — the fundamental notation, or natural inclination, of the human body to protect the core of its being in both health and illness. There are a handful of specialised treatment approaches that homeopathy applies to treat individuals with cancer. One is the individualistic approach — treating the individual at their core, or constitution, and not just the illness in isolation. Another speciality approach is targeting the cancer — at its roots. In the approach, a suitable homeopathic remedy, in micro-doses, that is in conformity vis-à-vis the symptom-picture the individual presents with, is prescribed. One classical example is Conium Maculatum for hard, ‘fixed’ tumours that develop slowly. Other interventions include injecting suitable homeopathic remedies at the tumour site itself — this is suggested to aggressively stimulate a healing response. Some homeopaths also favour a homeopathic ‘detox’ programme to repel the cancer from its very foundation. This includes aiding the individual’s detox channels, such as the kidneys, urinary tract, lymphatic system and liver, by way of cell detoxification with select homeopathic medicines. Whatever the approach, homeopathic treatment aims to look at, evaluate and analyse other symptoms too, such as the individual’s temperament, likes and dislikes, sensitivities, sensibilities, idiosyncrasies, and so on. Besides, the purpose of homeopathic treatment is essentially keyed not only to target the tumour

[cancer] and reverse its growth, but also to restore and optimise one’s health and well-being. There is a growing body of alternative, complementary, or integrative physicians and therapists who favour the use of homeopathic remedies as adjuvants with nutritional, immune, diet and detoxification programmes, or as supplementary therapy for cancer. Besides, evidence-based studies and reports suggest that professional homeopathic treatment has resulted in the resolution of tumours, reversal of the cancer process, and complete, tangible recuperation from the depths of cancerous hopelessness, in patients, to good health and optimal well-being. CLINICAL STUDIES A study published in The International Journal of Oncology reveals that homeopathic remedies have a beneficial effect on breast cancer cells. The study, which was conducted at M D Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas, US, showed that certain homeopathic remedies have preferentially elevated cytotoxic [killing] effects on breast adenocarcinoma [cancer] cells compared with cells derived from normal breast epithelium [cellular tissue]. The research reports that the homeopathic remedies, in the study, appeared to have similar activity to that of paclitaxel [Taxol], the most commonly used conventional drug for breast cancer, but without its toxic effects on normal cells. The experiments were conducted in triplicate and repeated at least twice in each case of remedy. The homeopathic remedies tested included Carcinosin 30C; Conium Maculatum 30C; Phytolacca Decandra 200C and Thuja Occidentalis 30C. The strongest effects were found from Carcinosin and Phytolacca. The research concludes, “The ultra-diluted natural homeopathic remedies investigated, in the study, offer the promise of being effective preventive and/or therapeutic agents for breast cancer and worthy of further study.” HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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Yet another study, conducted at the same centre, investigated the brain cancer cell-killing activity of the homeopathic remedy, Ruta, isolated from the plant, Ruta Graveolens. The research group treated human brain cancer and HL-60 leukaemia [blood cancer] cells, normal B-lymphoid cells, and melanoma [skin cancer] cells in mice, with different concentrations of Ruta in combination with Ca3[PO4]2, a nutritional supplement. Fifteen patients diagnosed with intracranial tumours were, likewise, treated with Ruta 6C and Ca3[PO4]2. Of the 15 patients, 6 of the 7 glioma [tumour that starts in the brain or spine] patients, showed complete regression of the tumours. One of the most exciting developments in the war on cancer was published recently in The Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies. The new research shows that the homeopathic remedy, Lycopodium Clavatum — made from a spore-bearing plant belonging to the clubmoss family — has an anti-cancer effect on infected cells, while protecting normal blood cells. The research conducted by Boiron Laboratory, France, and the University of Kalyani, India, reveals that highly diluted Lycopodium Clavatum is capable of inducing ‘apoptosis’ [cellular death] in cervical cancer cells. This signifies its promising, or potential, use as a supportive, or adjuvant, therapy for cervical cancer. The annual US$200 billion dollar cancer industry is frantic — it wants to win over the argument that chemotherapy, radiation, toxic drugs and surgery are the only proven treatments for the disease. This is because conventional big pharma is confronted today

with the growing demand for complementary and alternative medicine [CAM] for cancer. This isn’t the first time that a homeopathic remedy has been found to be effective against cancer. Two previous studies have produced similarly exciting results. Frenkel, M et al used ultra-diluted remedies of Phytolacca, Carcinosin, Conium, and Thuja on breast cancer cells and witnessed a deactivation of cancer cells in a process called cytotoxicity. Yet another team, led by Toliopoulos I K, Simos Y, Bougiouklis D and Oikonomidis S, discovered that certain homeopathic complexes were able to stimulate the anti-cancer activity of natural killer cells — a part of our immune system — in cancer patients. The Banerjee Protocol — a clinical treatment foray — developed by Prasanta Banerjee et al in India, and researched in collaboration with the globally-renowned M D Anderson Cancer Center, Texas, US — cited earlier — has also proven the therapeutic efficacy of homeopathic remedies in cancer. The breakthroughs deliver the exciting prospect of homeopathy being a safe, effective and affordable adjuvant and alternative to conventional treatment. As Dr Alexander Tournier, Executive Director of the London-based Homeopathy Research Institute, confirmed the validity of the Boiron-Kalyani report, “This study is significant, performed by a well-trained team with access to modern molecular biology techniques and with the support of Boiron, a leading homeopathic manufacturer worldwide — ensuring that the homeopathy part of the experiment was taken care of correctly.” — With additional editorial inputs from Dr RAJGOPAL NIDAMBOOR

Dr Mukesh Batra, a homeopath of international repute, is Founder-Chairman, Dr Batra’s. In a career spanning four decades, Dr Batra has treated thousands of patients, including presidents and prime ministers, and revolutionised the way homeopathy is practiced today. A writer, photographer, singer and philanthropist, Dr Batra has been honoured with several fellowships and over 50 national and international awards, including the Padma Shri by the President of India. He has authored several books, including the critically-acclaimed cyclopedic work, Healing with Homeopathy. He lives in Mumbai.

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WHAT’S YOUR TYPE: YOUR PERSONALITY

AGARICUS: MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING & EVERYTHING The homeopathic Agaricus personality epitomises individuals who present with or represent a palpable sense of incessant worry, along with a surging sense of foreboding anxiety.

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The homeopathic Agaricus Muscarius is garicus, a genus of mushrooms, is prepared from the common toadstool, the actually a fungus. It looks benevolent poisonous common genus of mushrooms — and harmless — actually it may not which is also called ‘fly agaric,’ primarily because be. It may conceal with all its innocence it has been traditionally used in certain cultures several mood-changing and hallucinogenic to get rid of flies and insects. The Agaricus used properties, including certain medicinal By Dr MUKESH for homeopathic preparation obviously possesses connotations. Mushrooms are edible; they BATRA a number of medicinal properties and curative can also be toxic. Tradition has it that it was attributes. for long used in Russia to promote creative abilities To put the point in précis — for the homeopathic and mental acuity and finesse. What’s more, some ‘formulation,’ the whole fungus is collected and washed people have, down the ages, used it to stimulate carefully. It is, thereafter, pounded into a pulverised powder, imaginative states by way of a drink, which supposedly following which the mixture is steeped in alcohol, filtered, boosts one’s physical strength and vitality. watered, stirred or shaken — to make the homeopathic Herbalists contend that Agaricus contains potencies. hallucinogens to induce visionary states — this The homeopathic Agaricus was proved by the legendary may be the historic basis of the ancient Hindu homeopath Dr Ernst Stapf, MD, who also established its soma and the Zoroastrian haoma drink, thanks to homeopathic healing properties. Yet, the most interesting its ability to increase bodily vigour and stamina. part, as with all homeopathic remedies, is, at the end of The fungus has sedative properties in small the entire progression, the substance left behind has no doses too, but in severe overdoses may lead to remnant of the fungus and none of its poisonous elements, fatal consequences. In other words, while a mild or harmful characteristics. Yet, it possesses powerful, overdose can trigger a host of symptoms, such as yet safe healing properties that have been validated and nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and breathing disorders, replicated by homeopathic clinical provings, evidenceincluding mental confusion, the recovery time is based use in actual clinical practice, and also studies. often uneventful — usually within 24 hours. HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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WORRY & NO HURRY The homeopathic Agaricus personality corresponds to individuals who present or represent a palpable sense of propensity to be incessantly worried or concerned and feel insecure about themselves — with a sense of terrifying foreboding jostling through their veins. It is also not uncommon for Agaricus individuals to have dismal thoughts of imminent death, lurking in the corner. That Agaricus personalities are often obsessed with all the possible awful things — that could occur for them — goads them to become sluggish, worn out and withdrawn. Individuals in need of Agaricus may be anxious, insecure, or fearful, and have morbid thoughts about their demise. Anxiety about health may often lead them to an obsessive fear of having conditions such as cancer. Symptoms typically include great lethargy and a great aversion to conversation, or delirium and loquacity, to the point of ecstasy, elation, or hypomania, and a disturbed sense of perspective. People for whom Agaricus is most suitable are particularly sensitive to cold when ill. Some symptoms are worse prior to thunderstorms and after sexual intimacy. Agaricus are usually introverted — they avoid conversation, or speaking to others just for the sake of communication, or keeping it going. This often gives them the veneer of being not communicative, or unsocial. Spot an individual with such an emotional make-up at a party, or elsewhere, and you can, rest assured, trust the homeopathic Agaricus to bring about a healing effect. It is not that the individual, in question, would get over the trait, lock, stock, and barrel — but, the curative effect eases the attribute to the best extent possible over a period of time. So much so, the individual would shed the ‘withdrawn facet’ and become more socially amenable and also receptive to people around. EDGY CANVAS That Agaricus is ideally suited to ease nervous disorders, which present with trembling, spasm, and a burning sensation, is as well-known as its healing effects in conditions such as chilblains — the inflammatory condition of the hands and feet caused by exposure to cold weather and moisture. No wonder, therefore, that Agaricus is a prime homeopathic remedy for disorders of the nervous system that cause trembling, itching, twitching and jerking of the limbs. Such conditions include epilepsy, chorea, and multiple sclerosis. No wonder too, it is useful for delirium tremens — withdrawal syndrome that occurs in people who have developed physiological dependence on alcohol — and, symptoms of senile dementia, a progressive, abnormally rapid deterioration of emotional stability and also mental faculties in the elderly. Agaricus has marked dizziness, with a weird feeling that one would fall towards the back. This is often accompanied by an unusual increased desire for food. There may also be a noticeable puffiness or prominence of the face, but unlike usual swellings there is no heat.

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Agaricus individuals are sensitive to cold, more so when they are ill. Agaricus, to reiterate a point, has an affinity for the limb — it is used to treat movements that are uncontrollable or occur involuntarily with trembling and a sense of unpredictable regularity. Many people suffering from such conditions, as you may have been witness to sometime, may complain of a sensation that their limbs are separated from their body. Agaricus is effective for such a presentation. Agaricus also has a huge affinity for the nervous system. It is useful for treating degenerative neurological disorders, especially the types of problems that are usually accompanied with trembling, twitching and spasms all over the body. From the homeopathic pointof-view, Agaricus is useful when there is impairment of intellectual capacity and personality integration — accompanied by agonising, piercing pains all over the body. Agaricus has been clinically found to provide tangible relief for certain nervous disorders that are, otherwise, difficult to treat. What determines the usage of Agaricus in nervous disorders is the individual’s sensitivity to touch, along with the presence of a palpable mental upheaval, such as extreme nervousness, anxiety and depression. Agaricus is also considered effective in Parkinson’s disease too, nothwithstanding diverse symptoms among patients presenting with the disorder. THE AGARICUS MIND INDEX • Aversion to discussion, or conversation • D  isinclined to perform any kind of labour, especially mental • Exuberant fancies • Elation • Inclination to make verses and to predict • Mania, shy, or furious, with great show of strength • Embraces companions and kisses their hands, alternately with annoyance • Silly cheerfulness • Great loquacity, sings, talks, but does not answer questions • Delirium, tries to get out of bed • Delirium constant, knows no one, throws things at the caretaker • Delirium tremens • Glum, self-willed, stubborn, and slow in learning to walk and talk. THE AGARICUS CATALOGUE Alcoholism. Delirium tremens with marked dizziness and an inclination to fall backwards. The face is puffy and red, but not hot. There may be a marked increase in appetite. Symptoms are better by slow movement. Symptoms are worse by cold, cold air, before thunderstorms, after sexual intercourse and after eating. Behavioural problems. Individuals requiring Agaricus show the talkativeness and idiocy seen in intoxication, particularly in children. This is a powerful remedy for


behavioural problems in children, especially when kids are mischievous, excitable, who often take the flight in their imagination with fairies and stammer. The remedy is also useful in children who have used large quantities of recreational drugs, or alcohol. Agaricus is a remedy that should be considered for foetal alcohol syndrome and for babies born to drug-addicted mothers. Chilblains. Chilblains with burning and itching. The skin shows signs of redness and swelling. Symptoms are better with heat. Symptoms are worse by cold air and cold compresses. Chorea. Twitching, unpredictable, erratic limb movements with a sensation that the limbs are disconnected from the body. Symptoms are better by slow movement, sleep, and evening evening. Symptoms are worse by cold air, before thunderstorms, and after sexual intimacy. Multiple sclerosis. Agaricus relieves spasms associated with multiple sclerosis and related conditions, which are often accompanied by a fear of developing cancer. There is a biological basis to the remedy — some of the constituents of the mushroom are possibly carcinogenic. Those who respond to the remedy often have severe depres¬sion with their neurological disease, and a morbid fascination with their own demise and that of others. Treatment with Agaricus is helpful in lifting the mood as well as reducing the spasm. Nervous-system disorders. Twitching and spasms in almost any muscle group in the body, caused by degenerative neurological disorders, such as senile dementia or multiple sclerosis. Symptoms manifest themselves diagonally from one side of the body to the

other, and may be accompanied by pain that is out of context to the clinical condition. There may be sharp, shooting pains, with possible convulsions and spasms. Movements may be unsteady, with awkwardness, inelegance, and a confounding gait. Other symptoms may include facial tics or facial paralysis, fainting, chorea, neuralgia, and sciatica. Symptoms are better with slow movement, sleep, and during the evening hours. Symptoms are worse by cold air, before thunderstorms, after sexual intercourse, and also touch. Parkinson’s disease. General weakness with trembling and twitching limbs that exhibit the typical nervous symptoms. The spine may be particularly tender to touch. Other symptoms may include a cerebral decline into great anxiety, gloom, apprehension, and hypochondria. Symptoms are better with calculated, slow movement and sleep. Symptoms are worse before thunderstorms. Visual problems. Apart from twitching of the eye muscles, there are visual disturbances, “reminiscent of Alice’s fall in Wonderland into the rabbit hole, including skewed perception and size — this is believed to be a keynote of temporal lobe epilepsy [fits]. Agaricus is also helpful for several psychiatric conditions, but only under the guidance and supervision of experienced, professional homeopaths. Besides helping patients having alcohol withdrawal and delirium tremens, as well as delusional and psychotic states, it is also useful for Bell’s palsy, where a temporary paralysis of the facial muscles occurs after exposure to cold wind. Agaricus is useful, no less, when there is too much of general or localised muscle spasm.

Dr Mukesh Batra, a homeopath of international repute, is Founder-Chairman, Dr Batra’s. In a career spanning four decades, Dr Batra has treated thousands of patients, including presidents and prime ministers, and revolutionised the way homeopathy is practiced today. A writer, photographer, singer and philanthropist, Dr Batra has been honoured with several fellowships and over 50 national and international awards, including the Padma Shri by the President of India. He has authored several books, including the critically-acclaimed cyclopedic work, Healing with Homeopathy. He lives in Mumbai.

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MEDICAL MARVELS: LITTLE PILLS, BIG RESULTS

Return Of The Native scene sees clinging with fear and weeping. She Mom was quite exasperated when she spoke will wake at night with the fears. She will wake to me. I can understand why. “Sophia has two and want to be tucked in. We must sit outside her definite sides to her personality. She is five, door, without touching the door until she is asleep. but acts like three, especially at home. On the Sophie’s mind is absorbed in its own other hand, she is quick to anger and that anger thoughts. She is a “dreamy kid.” Lately, it becomes a rage. Her face will flush and her eyes By Dr JOSEPH grow large. It is definitely a wild look. The anger KELLERSTEIN has been harder to reach her; so focused is she in her own dream world. escalates to violence with hitting, biting and At an earlier age, mom was concerned she might be spitting. She will throw things at me. Even from birth her on the autistic spectrum. Homeopathic prescriptions like screams would become loud quickly. There are threats Stramonium had helped her “get back into her body.” and cursing. She has been picking a lot at her nails and Mom has her own guilt in this scenario. Post-partum this since she was three.” she was haemorrhaging. As a result of this there was Sophia rebels and hates “being bossed.” She feels great muscular weakness and mom was afraid of excluded and worse. “You hate me,” or “you are trying dropping her, so she sent her away. Even now Sophia to trick me.” Mom thinks that these feelings underlie a feels she is not “part of the family.” “You don’t love me.” kind of suspicion that result in this behaviour. During There is a strong craving for sugar which clearly the morning and evening routines she really fights with aggravates her behaviour. It seems to have a drugher parents. Mom relates that this young lady is very like effect. Television also seems to affect her sensitive to the impression that people might laugh at behaviour. She loves salt and has an aversion to her. She will not dance or sing. the fat on meat. Interestingly, when in an agreeable There are many bedtime challenges. Sophie will lie mood she will often speak with a child-like baby down on the floor and roll around until it becomes a voice. She is different then, or has the aura of fight. At night, the fear of monsters creeps in. “Red furry someone who is innocent sensitive and pure. ones, they chase me, eat me and I die.” The bedtime HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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Foot... As Good As New Studying the homeopathic Materia Medica — the scientific compilation of remedial substances used in the practice of homeopathic medicine — can seem like spending time playing video games. You think you’re making it to the next level, but really it’s only a fantasy. Well, just get one severe case of infectious disease, while it’s hot, and life will change all that. It truly becomes a blessing having studied such remedies for both the doctor and patient. Agnes, well, she was one of them. Most of us, homeopaths, get pretty smug about our healing abilities as long as we know the bad ones go to the emergency room first.

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Dr BATRA’S FOUNDATION Spreading the Joy of Good Health… through Homeopathy!

April 10th is celebrated as ‘World Homeopathy Day’ in honour of Dr Samuel Hahnemann, MD, the founder of homeopathy. We are grateful to him for his perseverance, dynamism, vision and for his wonderful legacy, the science of homeopathy, a system of holistic medicine that heals both the mind and body. On the eve of Dr Hahnemann’s 260th birth anniversary, last month, Dr Batra’s Foundation felicitated 12 doctors with the prestigious Dr Mukesh Batra Homeopathy Award, at two prominent homeopathic medical colleges: Smt Chandaben Mohanbhai Patel College [CMP], Mumbai, and Fr Muller’s College, Mangalore. Dr Bindu Sharma and Dr Daniel Raj addressed the young doctors with inspiring, motivational stories from the life of Dr Hahnemann. Scholarships worth `3.5Lakh were given to them. We congratulate Ms Arunima Sinha, a Dr Batra’s ‘Positive Health Award’ winner in 2014, on receiving the Padma Shri Award, from our honourable President Mr Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi, recently. ‘TOGETHER WE CAN CREATE THE CHANGE WE WANT TO SEE!’ Join the joy-of-giving crusade to make someone smile, TODAY! For further details, please call: 0-93208 16431. E: larissa.dmello@drbatras.com pearl.vadukoot@drbatras.com — to be a part, or donate. Do ‘like us’ on our Facebook page

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At school she is social and overconfident, often taking charge in a group of her peers. She can also be quite mischievous. There is laziness. She hates having her hair brushed and will scream bloody murder. Sophia will apparently have difficulty remembering a sequence of tasks she has just been asked to do. On the physical side of things, there have been issues with adenoids and phlegm does accumulate with a cold. There is a preference to go without socks and foot perspiration can be offensive. As a practitioner it took some deliberation to assess this landscape. There were several elements: rage, fear, childishness, suspicion and arrogance, not to mention “being absorbed in her ‘own’ world.” Amazingly, homeopathy has carefully recorded the indications of the medicines we use and homeopaths through the centuries have just as carefully consulted these primary sources in order to find the best likeness of the suffering patient in a known medicine. Based on my reading and a comparison of our young patient, I selected Veratrum Album. Because, I was concerned with the possible sensitivity of this young lady, I elected to start with a low potency daily. The prescription was Veratrum Album 30C, once daily. The first follow-up was one month later. “She has been a gem.” We see she is affectionate towards her sister. Her drawing is more mature. She is proud of earning gold coins at school. Mom feels there is an 80 per cent decrease in her abusive behaviours. There is less picking of the fingernails. At night, there is a marked decrease in the level of fear and clinginess. Most striking for me [as a practitioner] was mom’s warm observation that Sophie now feels more a part of the family and sees less criticism in the action of others. In the past she might perceive even a loving smile in a negative light and react as if offended with a sneer. There were changes even on the first day. Homeopathy is a constant miracle and a sharp reminder that there are yet great mysteries to solve.


Well, I guess Agnes was an escapee. She was an 82 — a tough old bird and a real force to reckon with. Deep lines on her face, slender and a determined look, her appearance was reminiscent of Granny on the Beverly Hillbillies — ah, the image stays in my mind’s eye! I was comfortable, nestled in my consulting room way at the back of the office. My receptionist, as is normal, escorted the patient in and introduced us. She looked at me with piercing eyes and a brief smile. After the niceties, I settled back in the chair and began to examine the intake form. I didn’t make it much past the first complaint when my mind flipped into anxiety. It read “gangrene.” I think that’s all I recall. After looking up I was quickly put in my place. Yes, she had seen the doctors and, no, she wasn’t going back because she would rather die than lose the foot. Death did not scare her at all. The foot was definitely on the blackish side. How could I not take the case before authoritatively sending her back to the hospital? It was surprisingly brief. This poor lady was a chain smoker and had been for some decades. She promised to quit if only we could get rid of the pain and hopefully save the foot. Of course, it was getting worse quickly. The pain robbed her of any decent sleep. I uttered the magic words ‘tell me all about that.’ In response came, “It’s horrible… the burning… It wakes me up between 1:00am and 2:00am every night. I am forced to pace with the pains and the horrible anxiety. The only bit of help comes from applying heat.” I was, as if the symptoms, came singing out of the textbook and indicated only one remedy that would pace after midnight with anxiety and had burning pains which were worse with heat. Arsenicum Album. I gave no promises and said the foot might very well need to come off and made risks evident. I gave her Arsenicum Album 10M — just one dose, right there, and several to take for night time when waking from pain. The burning, restlessness and duration of waking diminished steadily, until it was mostly gone by the end of the first week. She checked in with me every three days to the cessation of symptoms. It was one or two months after that Agnes proudly presented a lovely pink

foot. She actually presented a video with a series of pictures of the foot, as it returned to optimal health.

‘Heady’ Respite Brian was in his mid-80s. His wife of four decades had passed away after a prolonged bout of cancer. Brian was totally devoted to her, and this trauma had been devastating. The response to homeopathic remedies Ignatia Amara and the Natrum Muriaticum was “very good.” There was, however, a nagging decline in vigour that really was not characteristic of any remedy. Soon, a new complaint did develop. The patient became forgetful and on questioning noted that the lapses of memory were accompanied by an upsetting sensation in the head “as if air were in the head.” Further inquiry revealed it was not a sensation of wind, draft or other movement of air. It had no temperature associated. I just can’t explain it other than to say it was as though there was “air in the head.” Homeopathy demands that we find a remedy that has been recorded as ‘creating’ the most similar set of symptoms to that which the patient most suffers from. In this case, there were remedies that had a record of “sensation of draft in the head,” or wind, but no direct evidence of just a sensation of air not being good enough. After reading through a dozen, or so unsuccessful candidates, I finally came upon a combination of words that lead me to read the remedy, Benzoic Acid. This was what I found. “Sensation as if there were air in the head,” “tired feeling in the head as if from night watching,” [staying up while caring for the sick] and the mind symptoms “confused head, omits words while writing.” Notice that there was no direct mention of memory loss, but that the two named symptoms certainly framed the situation well. Benzoic Acid 30C was given. One dose, per day. In just a few days, the state and the symptoms lifted nicely.

Dr Joseph Kellerstein, DC, ND, FCAH, CCH, is a naturopath-chiropractor-homeopath whose practice is predominantly devoted to Hahnemannian studies. A regular teacher at the Canadian College of Homeopathic Medicine, Dr Kellerstein conducts the much-acclaimed post-graduate seminar series, “Hahnemannian Perspectives” and also lectures internationally. He lives in Canada.

HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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HOW HOMEOPATHY HELPED ME

Freedom From Ovarian Distress

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was diagnosed with ovary cysts [PCOS]. I tried speciality allopathic treatment with no effect for several months. It was at this stage that a friend recommended that I should give homeopathy a real, good try. This prompted me to meet Dr Sourangshu Banerjee, who spent a good deal of time taking my case and analysing it. I must say that, since then, my treatment experience has been satisfying. I had had thyroid problem too, which was treated promptly. A repeat ultrasonography also confirmed that there is no evidence of the ovary cysts that troubled me for long. I thank Dr Banerjee for making my homeopathic treatment process so effortless, simple and easy. — Shyla N, a patient of Dr Sourangshu Banerjee, MD [Hom], Kolkata

Hair Apparent

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have no words to express my happiness. I know it, especially when I look at my earlier photos before I started homeopathic treatment for my hair loss. When I compare them with my current state, the improvement is crystal-clear. The hair texture has improved; it’s just too good to believe. But, it is true. The thinning of hair has reduced dramatically. My bald spots are no longer visible. All credit goes to Dr Sejal Parekar. She is an angel to me. I was so frustrated because of my bald spots, but now I am so happy — thanks to homeopathy. — Jayashri B, a patient of Dr Sejal Parekar, BHMS, Mumbai

Editor’s Note: Readers/patients are advised to be regular while taking homeopathic treatment as it helps for proper analysis of the efficacy, or otherwise, of the remedy administered.

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DOCTOR’S ORDERS

By Dr MUKESH BATRA LCEH, FSRH [MED] P [LOND], MDH [USA], FBIH [UK] PADMA SHRI RECIPIENT

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y doctor has diagnosed me with chronic fatigue syndrome [CFS], because I feel tired all the time, while investigations, as he admits, show no abnormality. Can homeopathy help? hronic fatigue syndrome is characterised by medically inexplicable symptoms, most often severe physical and mental exhaustion that is not relieved even with rest. CFS usually affects people over 40 years of age; it is more common in women. Research suggests that in most cases, there is a strong history of infection. Studies have shown that homeopathy can successfully treat CFS. I’d suggest that you take the homeopathic remedy, Sarcolactic Acid 6C, 4-5 pills, twice daily. Please let me know your progress.

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The scope of homeopathy is limited in genetic cases. But, when anxiety is the cause, homeopathy can provide substantial relief — leading to healthy dryness of your palms. A detailed case history is required in order to prescribe the appropriate homeopathic remedy for your problem. It is best if you’d relax a bit with the help of meditation, yoga, and music. Meanwhile, you’d take the homeopathic remedy, Silicea 6X, 2-4 tablets twice, daily. Please let me know your progress.

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y five-year-old son has constant itching in his anus. Please advice. our son could be suffering from worm infestation, a problem that affects around 400 million around the world. The infection can be confirmed by a stool test. A positive stool report will help to identify the type of worm infestation. De-worming is usually advocated. Worm infestation in children can lead to anaemia, impaired physical growth and also affect their learning ability. It, therefore, requires prompt and effective treatment. Please give him the homeopathic remedy, Cina 30C, 4-5 pills, twice daily. Please let me know his progress.

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am aged 54. I have nasal polyps and I have been advised surgery. Can homeopathy help me to avoid surgery? asal polyps are mechanical obstructions that generally develop in people with allergies. Surgery may be recommended or avoided depending on the size of the polyps and the intensity of the symptoms. Homeopathy is often recommended for the management of nasal polyps, especially when they are small in size. Timely administered homeopathic remedies can help to am 37 and I cannot raise my right arm beyond a avoid surgery and its inherent complications. Moreover, certain point. My X-ray shows that my right shoulder it is common for the condition to recur joint is ‘perfectly’ fine. Please guide. even after surgery, because of allergies, a ou are probably suffering from ‘frozen o you have a health likely trigger. Homeopathy helps to treat shoulder,’ or adhesive capsulitis, a question? Need an the ‘root cause; it also minimises the condition in which movements of the answer? chance of recurrence. I’d recommend that shoulder joint get restricted due to the E-mail your health you speak to a professional homeopath in formation of scar tissue in the joint questions to: your area — for appropriate constitutional capsule, for no apparent reason. Past expertadvice@ homeopathic treatment. homeopathyandyou.com injury and conditions, like diabetes, Renowned homeopath thyroid disorders, heart disease, and Dr Mukesh Batra will Parkinsonism, have been linked as likely am a college-going student and answer your questions. causes. Hot fomentation and rotational I have an embarrassing problem exercises at the shoulder joint can help — excessive sweating of palms. reduce the stiffness. Meanwhile, I’d Is there a cure in homeopathy? suggest that you take the homeopathic ou seem to be suffering from palmar remedy, Rhus Toxicodendron 200C, 4-5 hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating pills, twice daily. Please let me know your of palms. This is often genetic. It can progress. be heightened with anxiety and stress.

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QUINTESSENCE

HOMEOPATHY & SCIENCE: EXTRAORDINARY MEDICINE Homeopathy and science are not in opposition. The spirit of scientific inquiry and homeopathy too are not in conflict, although narrow scientific methods used to ‘distil’ conventional [allopathic] drugs are ill-suited to evaluate homeopathy.

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medicine, homeopathy has had to use a omeopathy’s detractors, whether scientific model designed for conventional they are scientists or not, always find medicine, despite the fundamental arguments to deny the effectiveness differences between the two systems. of homeopathy, arguing that homeopathic When discussing homeopathic scientific studies are flawed, trials in homeopathy research, we must first consider the role of do not comply with the scientific method, By Dr CLARA evidence-based medicine, as this has become and homeopathic research studies are not LOPEZ-AMAYA the ‘gold standard’ for therapeutics, since the good enough to always be published in late 20th century. Evidence-based medicine prestigious scientific journals. This article uses current evidence, from scientific research, to assist addresses such arguments by defining and discussing in the process of making decisions in medical care. This concepts and principles as conceived by homeopathy, concept leads us to consider an important question or contrasted by conventional medicine. With the we want to leave you with: what were the decisions in support of high quality published research, readers medical care based on prior to the late 20th century? will be provided with real facts surrounding the topic. The methodologies most commonly used in In order to carry out scientific research, and evidence-based medicine comprise those based on keep up with the standards of evidence-based

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studies that have already been published, such as systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and those used to carry out the studies, such as double-blind randomised controlled trials [RCTs]. Here, the focus will be placed on RCTs, because this is the experimentation methodology used in evidencebased medicine, and also because we want to discuss it in the context of its utilisation in homeopathy. Put simply, double-blind RCTs are experiments to test medicines and placebo [dummy, or plain sugar pills] in a blinded fashion, using a randomised group of study subjects with a similar ailment [neither study subjects, researchers nor result evaluators know who is taking placebo, and who is taking the medicine being tested]. If the effect of the medicine on eliminating symptoms is significantly higher than that of the placebo, the medicine is deemed effective for the ailment. THE PROBLEM WITH RCTs FOR HOMEOPATHY The methodology of RCTs, developed according to models that apply to conventional medicine, has several aspects that conflict with the principles of homeopathy. Individualisation. Homeopathic methodology regards each person as a unique individual with unique characteristics. Homeopathic medicine selection that takes this individuality into consideration gives excellent results. However, in order to conform to the conditions of group treatment, for a specific ailment used in an RCT, this individualisation cannot exist — despite the reality that this is one of homeopathy’s strengths. Totality. Conventional medicine treats symptoms — ‘the parts’ — while homeopathy treats the whole individual — ‘the totality.’ The ‘totality’ includes not only physical, mental and emotional symptoms, but also the interactions of the individual with their environment. RCTs measure quantitative parameters, making the model subject to errors when used in homeopathy. However, this situation is changing in favour of homeopathy, aside from the medical modalities that consider the totality of each person and their individuality. There is a trend in evidence-based medicine towards the use of qualitative methods alone, or with quantitative methods. This is because the benefits of qualitative methods have been demonstrated in studies, such as early diagnosis in dementia, recovery, and the efficiency of RCTs. Methods such as comparative trials have been proposed to measure the real practice of homeopathy, where the specificity of homeopathic medicine, the non-specificity of homeopathic consultation, and the interaction of the two are taken into account. Efficacy trials and treatment trials. Efficacy trials and treatment trials are carried out in the same way in conventional medicine, but not in homeopathy. Treatment trials used in conventional medicine can be adapted to homeopathy to some extent, because both aim to determine whether a medicine is more effective than placebo in improving a condition.

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Efficacy trials in conventional medicine fundamentally differ with efficacy trials, or ‘provings,’ in homeopathy. In conventional medicine, the purpose of these trials is to suppress symptoms, while in homeopathy; the purpose of these trials is to produce symptoms. For a homeopathic drug proving trial, a medicinal substance with unknown, or few known, medical applications is tested in a randomised group of healthy subjects. Changes in the condition of the healthy subjects are evaluated individually, and in the group. The resulting number of common and significant symptoms is referred to as the symptom picture of the medicinal substance. This substance can be used to treat those experiencing the same symptoms. If significant improvement is obtained, the substance is included in the repertory [an exhaustive index of homeopathic medicines and their symptoms], or Materia Medica, the book that details symptom-pictures of homeopathic remedies. Clinical results will differentiate between the presence and absence of resolution of symptoms. The criticism of this system is subjectivity, because it relies on observations and reporting from the subject and the homeopaths involved in the experimentation. However, a recent study has shown how most of the mentioned difficulties can be overcome. A group of investigators from Germany demonstrated that a traditional homeopathic proving methodology can be adapted to a placebo-controlled [Phase-1; on healthy volunteers] trial, using the present requirements for research under current drug regulations in Europe. In brief, the study was a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled Phase-1 trial, with 30 healthy participants. The homeopathic drug proving [HDP] study involved a base-line observation of seven days, an intervention period of five days and a follow-up period of 16 days. Subjects were either doctors or students of homeopathy, and the drug identity was hidden; unlike conventional trials where participants are informed about the identity of the drug and the possible risks involved. Globules of a homeopathic medicine, in the potency of 12C, and sucrose globules, which acted as placebo, were used. Subjects took five globules, five times a day, for five consecutive days. Participants stopped taking globules when they experienced proving symptoms. Subjects documented these symptoms in a diary. Adverse events and proving symptoms were documented together. The primary outcome for the HDP was individualistic and peculiar symptoms, in order to respect homeopathic criteria according to homeopathy’s founder Dr Samuel Hahnemann’s Organon, the landmark book on homeopathic philosophy. The secondary outcome parameters were qualitative differences in the profile of characteristic and proving symptoms. Proving symptoms were analysed using content analysis according to Mayring [or, adaptation to homeopathic qualitative analysis method].


Blinding. The blinding component of RCTs also presents difficulties when applied to homeopathy. At a homeopathic first consultation, the homeopath gets information from the subject about mental, physical and emotional symptoms, constitution, lifestyle, childhood, family history and all of the traits that make the patient different and unique, through a thorough questioning. The study of this information allows the homeopath to find the most appropriate homeopathic medicine that will stimulate the body to heal. But, by RCT protocol, the prescriber should not know about the medicine the study subject is taking, so as to avoid biased interpretations during follow-ups. To get around this obstacle, the homeopath is allowed to select the medicine, but the subjects may receive either placebo or the medicine without the homeopath knowing which. Evaluation difficulties also arise when the potency is not appropriate, or the subject doesn’t respond for some other reason. Because of the blinding factor, the homeopath can’t get the feedback needed to make changes that will ensure treatment success. Placebo effect. One of the arguments used by homeopathy’s detractors is that responses to homeopathic remedies are due to the placebo effect. In efficacy trials, questionnaires are designed to limit the number of symptoms being considered because the amount of symptoms experienced by the study subjects can be overwhelming. It is certain that during RCTs, interaction of study subjects with these questionnaires,

with limited symptoms, may result in an increased placebo effect, but carefully designed studies ease these interactions. It has been demonstrated that the placebo effect resulting from homeopathic trials is not higher than that obtained from conventional drug trials. GOOD EVIDENCE Good evidence that the action of homeopathic medicines is real, and not a result of placebo effect, is the improvement of ailments suffered by babies and animals [who can’t verbally express what they feel and are not affected by psychosomatic influences] due to homeopathic treatment. The argument that the pseudo-sceptics make to this is that the babies and animals are affected by their caretakers’ or owners’ belief, a sort of placeboeffect-by-proxy. To counteract this argument we would like to pose some questions supported by clinical evidence and research studies in the area. Would the beliefs of a mother influence the drop of a high fever in a baby, after the use of a homeopathic medicine like Belladonna? Could the rapid healing of a common infectious skin disease in a baby, after the use of a homeopathic medicine like Sulphur, possibly be the result of a placebo-effect by proxy? Would farm animals healing from infections, when homeopathic medicines are added to their food or water, be the result of any influence by their owner’s beliefs? What about the role of homeopathic medicine in prevention? Homeopathic medicines have shown to

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be effective in the prevention of mastitis during the dry period of dairy cows. On the other hand, doubleblinded RCTs in animals have shown superior effect of homeopathic medicines compared to placebo controls. Would researchers have the power to influence in vitro study results? There is growing evidence from in vitro studies of the biological effect of homeopathic remedies against viruses; the inhibitory effect of homeopathic Nux Vomica and Calendula Officinalis on the gene expression of Helicobacter Pylori; changes in the growth-rate of plants by homeopathic medicines; and, the in vitro activation of bone marrow cells by homeopathic preparations. Why is there so much controversy and criticism concerning homeopathy and homeopathic scientific research? Accepting that homeopathic medicines have a biological effect, even in potencies where the dilution goes beyond Avogadro’s number — the point at which not a single molecule of the original substance is likely to remain in the solution — is not easy. It is hard for people steeped in longestablished precepts of chemistry to accept that their knowledge might be wrong, or at least incomplete. MORE EVIDENCE Scientists exploring the mechanisms of how homeopathy works are extremely cautious about their comments, or prefer to remain silent, for good reason. Throughout history experiments suggesting theories that could support the effectiveness of homeopathy, such as ‘the memory of water,’ proposed in 1988, have been sabotaged, attacked and ignored. Dr Jacques Benveniste, MD, the main investigator of this theory, lost his laboratory, his funding and his reputation. More recently, Nobel laureate Dr Luc Montagnier, PhD, the co-discoverer of the HIV virus, has been strongly attacked, and denied funding, to continue with his research — forcing him to move to China to pursue his work on the electromagnetic waves produced by highly-diluted DNA of some microorganisms. The situation of Montagnier brings us to another important factor delaying progress in high quality research in homeopathy: lack of funding. Pharmaceutical companies fund a high percentage of the research studies on conventional medicines because the business for them is there. However, homeopathic medicines are extremely cost-effective, so homeopathic pharmacies do not have that kind of financial clout. As far as publication in prestigious scientific journals goes, research relating to homeopathy is often denied publication for no good reason. For instance,

Dr Gustavo Bracho’s team, who did a 2.3-millionpopulation clinical trial on homeopathic prevention of leptospirosis in Cuba, had spectacular results, yet his paper was rejected by several prominent medical journals before it was published in the international peer-reviewed journal, Homeopathy. To add to the controversy, the media is easily confused about evidence for the effectiveness of homeopathy, because there are plenty of apparentlyrespectable scientists or doctors decrying any study in the area as non-definitive. Why? Who could be interested in attacking homeopathy now, when its popularity is rapidly growing due to the increasing evidence of its effectiveness, the discovery of many unknowns about its mechanism of action, and the technological advancements in material science, quantum science etc., that define the present era? Who, lacking real interest in seeing chronic diseases cured and cost-effective improvement of health for wealthy and poor alike, would feel menaced by homeopathy? Who would have the money and power to fund pseudo-sceptics [individuals without any knowledge of homeopathy, who dare to criticise a science without an understanding of science, or the application of a ‘scientific method’ to prove/ disprove their denigrating arguments against the science of homeopathy]? Who, for obvious reasons, would not be interested in reviewing any clinical evidence or ‘scientific’ proof of homeopathy? Who could be using their power over the media to counteract the popularity of homeopathy? Despite all of these obstacles, more and more evidence in the area of ultra-high dilutions has been published recently. Some particularly interesting publications are: a review that show preliminary evidence supporting the biologic effects of ultrahigh dilutions; a study demonstrating that different high-potency homeopathic medicines, and different potencies of high-potency homeopathic medicines, can be distinguished from one another using spectroscopy; and a report on the presence of the starting substance in ultra-high dilutions of homeopathic medicines, in the form of nanoparticles [microscopic-size particles]. The fact that studies have shown positive results for homeopathy, despite numerous obstacles and continual accommodations to fit the standard medical science model, is a testament to the validity of homeopathy — a system of medicine with a 200-year record of successful clinical results. The inference is simple, also profound. Homeopathy serves humanity by curing acute and chronic conditions, including those considered untreatable by conventional medicine — safely, gently and permanently.

Dr Clara Lopez-Amaya, MSc [Microbiology], PhD [Biochemistry], DHMHS, began her career as a Research Associate and University Assistant Professor of Microbiology and Biotechnology. Her passion for science drove her to pursue her PhD. Dr Lopez, who has always had a keen interest in natural/alternative medicine, began to study homeopathy out of desperation — to help her three-year-old son overcome asthma. She lives and proudly practices homeopathy, along with nutrition and Bowen Therapy, in Mississauga, Canada.

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YOUR LITTLE BOX: HOMEOPATHIC KIT FOR EVERY HOME

BERBERIS: MORE THAN A KIDNEY REMEDY The homeopathic Berberis Vulgaris, or barberry, has a strong propensity for the urinary and digestive systems. It is also well-known for its therapeutic profile in kidney problems — including stones. By Dr PALLAV THANAWALA

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ndividuals who represent the homeopathic Berberis Vulgaris personality are often lethargic, sluggish, and listless. They also find it difficult to sustain any mental effort or think in a straight line. They can be particularly apprehensive at nightfall, when objects may emerge larger than life and fuzzy so that they may be mistaken for demons. Barberry is native to Europe and North America. It grows wild in the woods, hedges, bushy chalk hills. It is also commonly cultivated as a garden plant or herb. Barberry was used by ancient Greek and Arabian physicians to cool the blood during fevers and treat jaundice and gastrointestinal disorders. Native Indians used it in the Americas for peptic ulcers. Herbalists in Europe give barberry for liver problems caused by drug or alcohol abuse, and Ayurvedic doctors in India prescribe it for detox and as a liver tonic. In Traditional Chinese Medicine [TCM], barberry is used to combat diarrhoea. Barberry contains alkaloids that are thought to inhibit cancer. It exhibits a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity. The caustic and antiseptic properties of this astringent herb make it an effectual digestive tonic for the gastrointestinal system — especially when there are infections and peptic ulcers. The sour berries were first used to preserve pickles. All parts of barberry plant are harmful if eaten — except for its red berries. For homeopathic use, the bark of the small or medium-sized root branches is dried and chopped. It is, thereafter, steeped in alcohol, filtered, diluted, and succussed [shaken]. The homeopathic remedy was proved by Dr Hesse. It is primarily prescribed for urinary and digestive disorders with sharp or colicky pain. That barberry has traditionally been used in several cultures to treat digestive and gallbladder complaints and also lower fever, bleeding, and inflammation is passé. Gout and arthritic pain are also known to respond to Berberis. Symptoms, relating to joint disorders, are often better in the afternoon. Symptoms are often worse, likewise, by movement, or walking heavily while going down the stairs. Berberis individuals present with pallor, hollow eyes and cheeks, along with dry, parched mucous membranes. The remedy is also given for a particular type of pain — deep, sharp, neuralgic or colicky pain that radiates outwards and shifts from one part of the body to another. This type of sudden pain, as you’d have, perhaps, been witness to is often linked with kidney infection, arthritis or gout. That Berberis has a strong propensity for the urinary and

digestive systems, and is used primarily for the treatment of kidney disorders, including stones, is as well-known as the ‘Helicopter shot’ of cricket superstar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni. THE BERBERIS INDEX Cystitis. Burning or sharp, cutting pains from the bladder to the urethra, with green or dark yellow urine that contains a reddish, ‘branlike’ sediment. Pain from the spermatic cord to the testes may make the sexual act painful. Symptoms are better after urinating. Symptoms are worse on urinating and while standing. Gallbladder disorders. Sharp, radiating, tearing pain in the area of the gallbladder, extending towards the stomach. Colic may cause a stabbing, stitch-like pain that radiates from the liver. There may be an inflamed gallbladder or gallstones with associated biliary colic [pain in the upper abdomen], which may sometimes develop into jaundice. Symptoms are better by rest. Symptoms are worse by pressure on the upper abdomen, standing and also movement. Joint pain. General joint and muscle aches in the arms and legs, with sharp pains radiating from the area to cause lingering, painful distress. Kidney disorders. Kidney infection with tenderness [sensitive to touch] and pain in the kidney area, as if water is trying to effervesce through the skin. Urine is dark yellow, or green with a reddish, ‘branlike’ sediment. Kidney stones with severe, sharp, neuralgic or colicky pain radiating from the kidneys to the bladder and down the legs. Symptoms are better by rest, or lying on the painful side. Symptoms are worse by standing, movement, or sudden jolts. Low-back pain. Pain in the lower back that radiates outward, or down the thigh, accompanied by tautness and possibly by a stitch in the abdomen, or on the side of the body. Symptoms are better by rest and worse by standing, movement, or going down heavily down the stairs. The key symptoms for the remedy, to put them in précis, include colicky kidney pains, radiating pains, lethargy and listlessness, including gnawing pains in the region of the gallbladder. Dosage. Berberis Vulgaris 30C, 4-5 pills, or as mother tincture [Q], 2-3 times daily, or as prescribed, or advised, by your homeopathic physician.

Dr Pallav Thanawala, BHMS, is a Pune-based homeopath.

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HOMEOPATHIC HAPPENINGS

THE FLAWED REPORT ON HOMEOPATHY FROM DOWN-UNDER

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he Homeopathic Research Institute [HRI], UK, has responded to the recent Australia National Health and Medical Research Council [NHMRC] report on their question of effectiveness of homeopathy. The response in context: Although the HRI welcomes thorough research in homeopathy, only studies carried out using appropriate and rigorous scientific methods can produce meaningful results. We, therefore, lament the recent publication by Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council [NHMRC], which fails to meet this standard. During a public consultation on the draft version of this report, HRI and others highlighted deep flaws in how the NHMRC had analysed the evidence on homeopathy. Shockingly, none of these serious problems was addressed in the final publication. This raises questions as to whether the public consultation was ever meant to have any impact on the final report, leading to serious concerns about the conduct of this governmental body. We maintain that the conclusions of the NHMRC report are inconsistent with the evidence. The inaccuracy of the NHMRCs conclusions stem primarily from one fundamental flaw at the heart of this report — the NHMRC reviewers considered the results of all trials for one condition together as a whole, even though the individual trials were assessing very different types of homeopathic treatment. To illustrate this flaw, the NHMRC reviewers asked,

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“Is homeopathy effective for condition A?’, working from the premise that a positive trial showing that one homeopathic treatment is effective is somehow negated by a negative trial which shows that a completely different homeopathic treatment for that same condition is ineffective. This is a bizarre and unprecedented way of assessing scientific evidence. In conventional research the question asked would be, “Is treatment X effective for condition A?”, not “Is conventional medicine effective for condition A?” based on combining the results of all drug trials together. Some treatments work, some don’t. The whole point of medical research is to establish which treatments are useful and which are of no value. This is no different in homeopathy. This single methodological flaw explains why the NHMRC has failed to find any ‘reliable’ evidence that homeopathy is effective for any of the 61 conditions under consideration. Secondly, we are deeply perplexed as to the reasons for the exclusion of some of the best evidence for key clinical conditions. In brief: Jacobs et al performed a meta-analysis of the treatment of childhood diarrhoea using homeopathy in 2003, N=242 in placebo controlled trials, p-value = 0.008. This meta-analysis was excluded, why? Wiesenauer & Lüdtke conducted a meta-analysis into the treatment of hay fever in 1996, N=752 in placebo controlled RCTs, p-value <0.0001. This meta-analysis was excluded. Again we ask why?


Schneider et al conducted a meta-analysis of noninferiority trials of homeopathy compared to usual care for the treatment of vertigo, N=1388, where non-inferiority was clearly demonstrated. Again excluded, again why? A Cochrane review by R T Mathie, PhD, et al inspected the evidence for the treatment of influenza using homeopathy concluded in favour of homeopathy [N=1259, placebo RCTs, p=0.001], yet this evidence was simply ignored in the final conclusions on the grounds of possible bias in the underlying studies. The NHMRC also needs to justify their use of N=150 as a line between reliable and unreliable trials and they certainly need to explain why size is relevant at all when the findings are statistically significant. Furthermore, we do not see how there could be any justification for the absence of a homeopathy expert on the NHMRC review board. The presence of such an expert would potentially have prevented many of the issues raised here and would definitely have reassured the public about allegations of bias on the part of the NHMRC. We note that the conclusions of the NHMRC report are at odds with the conclusions of the recent extensive metaanalysis of RCTs using homeopathy performed by Mathie and co-workers which concludes in favour of an effect of homeopathy. The HRI does not dispute the fact that there are few high-quality, positive studies in homeopathy and that these need independent replication, but we do dispute the NHMRC’s failure to identify these positive studies in their Information Paper as promising studies which should be repeated. Despite the considerable means spent on this report and great profession of due process and absence of bias, as demonstrated above, the NHMRC has failed both in terms of the process they used and in the fairness of their assessment of the evidence. HOMEOPATHY EFFECTIVE FOR SEVERE DEPRESSION IN PERI- AND POSTMENOPAUSAL WOMEN: A NEW STUDY Perimenopausal period refers to the interval when

women’s menstrual cycles become irregular and is characterised by an increased risk of depression. Use of homeopathy to treat depression is widespread, but there is a lack of clinical trials about its efficacy in depression in peri- and postmenopausal women. In a recent study, Macías-Cortés Edel, Llanes-González, Aguilar-Faisal, and Asbun-Bojalil, assessed the efficacy and safety of individualised homeopathic treatment versus placebo and fluoxetine versus placebo in peri- and postmenopausal women with moderate to severe depression. A randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind, double-dummy, superiority, three-arm trial with a 6 week follow-up study was conducted. The study was performed in a public research hospital in Mexico City in the outpatient service of homeopathy. 133 periand postmenopausal women diagnosed with major depression according to DSM-IV [moderate to severe intensity] were included. The outcomes were: change in the mean total score among groups on the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, Beck Depression Inventory and Greene Scale, after 6 weeks of treatment, response and remission rates, and safety. Efficacy data were analysed in the intention-to-treat population [ANOVA with Bonferroni post-hoc test]. After a 6-week treatment, the homeopathic group was more effective than placebo by 5 points in Hamilton Scale. Response rate was 54.5 per cent and remission rate, 15.9 per cent. There was a significant difference among groups in response rate definition only, but not in remission rate. Fluoxetine-placebo difference was 3.2 points. No differences were observed among groups in the Beck Depression Inventory. Homeopathic group was superior to placebo in Greene Climacteric Scale [8.6 points]. Fluoxetine was not different from placebo in Greene Climacteric Scale. The authors conclude that homeopathy and conventional fluoxetine are effective and safe antidepressants for climacteric women. Homeopathy and fluoxetine were significantly different from placebo in response definition only. Also, homeopathy, but not fluoxetine, improves menopausal symptoms scored by Greene Climacteric Scale.

Dr BATRA’S ACADEMY: THE FELLOWSHIP COURSE BEGINS The one-year, one of-its-kind fellowship, post-graduate course in homeopathic dermatology, affiliated to Maharashtra University of Health Sciences, Nashik, began in right earnest at Dr Batra’s newly-launched Academy. The first series of lectures were held in March — a total of 33 students who enrolled were in for an insightful academic session with comprehensive lectures by Dr Rohini Talwar, MD [Dermatology], on the anatomy and physiology of skin, juxtaposed by interesting videos. This was

followed by a series of in-depth sessions on the homeopathic approach for skin disorders by Dr Prabhakar Devadiga and Dr Nimish Mehta, both senior faculty, from the Department of Organon, CMP Homeopathic Medical College, Mumbai. The overall feedback from students was impressive and encouraging. The Academy, as a part of its edifying plans, is inviting the best faculty from all over India for its fellowship lectures. The next lecture sessions will be held this month and also next month.

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WHAT LIES BENEATH: MYSTERIES OF HOMEOPATHY

HOMEOPATHY: THE NEW-AGE MEDICINE New research evidences that homeopathic remedies work much like enzymes, or hormones. In other words, they, like them, have extremely dynamic, tangible and vibrant effects on and in our body. By Dr RAJGOPAL NIDAMBOOR

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2005 study, albeit ‘on the blink,’ or flawed, published in The Lancet, called for an end to homeopathy. More recently, the National Health and Medical Research Council [NHMRC], in Australia, fired yet another ‘misplaced’ salvo on the [in]effectiveness of homeopathy. This, of course, should come as no big surprise to us. Who, you may well ask. Answer: not just homeopathic physicians, but more than a legion of its adherents, that also includes Microsoft’s most illustrious Bill Gates. The reason is simple — ever since its inception, homeopathy has never been bereft of ‘galvanised’ disagreement from orthodox, or conventional, medicine. That homeopathy is a relatively young science is passé. The fact is: homeopathy is widely practiced and used all over the globe, especially in Europe — most eminently by the British royal family. Add to this homeopathy’s growing re-emergence and popularity both in the US and the developing world, there is no denying its well-established place in medical practice, therapeutics, and preventative medicine. Well, it all started and as expected for any new, challenging medical philosophy. Homeopathy caused great hullabaloo when it was first introduced in Germany,

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over 200 years ago. As a matter of fact, the resentment from the local medical community was so strong that Dr Samuel Hahnemann, MD, the founder of the system, lost his medical licence. That the seminal physician was subsequently invited by the French government to re-establish his medical practice, in France, is what convictions are made of and also fulfilled. The rest is history. This was because on the bright side of things, more so when wiser counsel prevailed, Hahnemann was promptly exonerated. Result: Germany is today one of the leading lights in the recognition of homeopathy, and also for providing some of the finest facilities engaged in the manufacture and marketing of homeopathic medicines and speciality products across the world. What makes homeopathy a simplistic science so ‘complicated’ is its unpretentious theory — which is also its basic philosophy. This is a barrier no less that most conformists can[not] surmount. The barricade, in its convolution, comprises of two parts. The first is related to homeopathic micro-dosages, although there is adequate corroboration from the pointof-view of quantum physics, and nano-pharmacology. Quantum physics articulately backs homeopathy’s


‘minimalistic’ idea, not to speak of its efficacious usage in medicinal micro-doses. The second ‘wedge’ is related to the paradigm that one conventionally looks only at a person with a disease, not as one whole — and, that a given disease, big or small, is ‘localised.’ From the homeopathic standpoint, this is not quite the case. To cull an exemplar, a malfunctioning lung is not diseased alone. It is, in its broadest connotation, a part of one’s overall portrait. You get the point. In homeopathic practice, the understanding of the body’s overall configuration provides us with a more methodical way of healing — like no other system. Put simply, it conforms to the homeopathic ideal of treating the overall condition, or totality of symptoms and signs — not just a part of ‘us.’ This is one component. The other is — homeopathy’s continued, or continuing success, thanks to its capacity to think outside of and far beyond the ‘conventional’ medical box. Homeopathy does not confront the laws of nature. It simply extends our understanding of nature’s laws. This is not only its uniqueness, but also its most profound, nay fundamental, strength. Let us now take an in-depth, and also dispassionate, look at homeopathy’s stirring premise. Of what makes it a complete, holistic system of health and medicine — one that is essentially beyond the tangible ‘assays,’ parameters and/or scope of conventional medicine and science, despite the duo’s marvellous technological armamentarium and spectacular array of sophisticated utilities. One study in The Lancet, after all, does not a sweeping generalisation make. Rather, it will only add to homeopathy’s vitality — because, we all, including our patients, needless to say, know what-is-what of things as-it-is, or as they are. This is sure reason enough why [w]holistic interest in the science of homeopathy is only poised to grow exponentially. The best part — it also holds a dazzling possibility for the gentle form of therapy to ascend from its ‘alternative medicine’ status into the medical mainstream. This is our firm belief and conviction — we are sure it’s just as much yours too.

it is just as effective in acute conditions, not to speak of self-care for minor illnesses. A complete system of healing, homeopathy is based on the simple understanding that ‘like cures likes,’ or similia similibus curentur. In other words, ‘what can cause, can cure.’ Homeopathic remedies are made from small, nay tiny, amounts of substances found in nature. They have no damaging side-effects, or toxicity. Research evidences that homeopathic remedies, perhaps, work in our body much like enzymes, or hormones. Enzymes and hormones, which are available in the body in similar minute quantities, as we all know, have extremely dynamic, tangible, vibrant actions and effects in our body. Homeopathy has proven effective in treating several diseases for which conventional medicine has but little to offer. Yet, thanks to its low-cost, which endangers the profits of the pharmaceutical industry, and its powerful lobby, homeopathy, which does not follow conformist medical thinking, has been continually attacked by the orthodox, or conventional, medical establishment — and, for all the wrong reasons. Worse still, the conventional establishment, to highlight yet again the study published in The Lancet, called for an end to homeopathy, without taking into account its unique nature of application and practice. Among other topics, the journal challenged the plausibility of homeopathic effects given that homeopathic remedies are often administered in dilutions in excess of Avogadro’s number. Rustum Roy, PhD, distinguished material scientist from Penn State University, US, articulated that the chemistry argument made in The Lancet study and by conventional medicine, in general, was false science. “The underpinning of the editorial content of The Lancet as it relates to homeopathy relies on a quaint old idea from the nineteenth century that the only way that the property of water can be affected or changed is by incorporating foreign molecules.” He added: “This is the Avogadro-limit high-school level chemistry argument. To a materials scientist this notion is absurd, since the fundamental paradigm of materials science is that the structure-property relationship is the basic determinant of everything. It is a fact that the structure of water and, therefore, the informational content of water can be altered in infinite ways.”

MEDICINE OF THE FUTURE From its inception, homeopathy has evolved into a refined science of diagnosis and prescription, offering a wide variety of remedies for use in therapeutic practice and preventative medicine. Homeopathy is, needless to say, safe, low-cost, and effective. Small wonder why it is used by millions of people worldwide. This is not all. Homeopathy also holds the promise to be the medicine of the future — for more reasons than being merely gentle, holistic, and reliable. While it’s popularly believed that homeopathy is most useful in treating chronic illnesses that fail to respond to modern or conventional medical treatment, the fact is —

UNIQUE & PATIENT-SPECIFIC Homeopathy does not have specific remedies for specific diseases like conventional medicine. It treats the individual who has the illness, and not just the disease itself. This means — if two individuals have the same disease, they may require different remedies, in agreement with the distinctive expression of the problem Evaluating it on parameters relevant to conventional, or orthodox, medicine — as The Lancet study, for example, did, like some studies before — would, therefore, be a canard. This is also a travesty, no less, at a time when the US Food and Drug Administration [FDA] recognises homeopathic remedies as official drugs and regulates HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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their manufacturing, labelling, and dispensing. What’s more, homeopathic remedies also have their own official compendium — the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States, first published in 1897. There are, in addition, other pharmacopoeias applicable in countries where homeopathy is practiced. POPULAR: WORLDWIDE It’s estimated that 500 million people receive homeopathic treatment on a yearly basis worldwide. The World Health Organisation [WHO] reports that homeopathy is the second largest medical system people depend upon for primary healthcare in the world. Homeopathy is extremely popular in Europe, the continent where it first originated. In France, pharmacies, for instance, are required to carry homeopathic remedies along with conventional drugs. In the UK, homeopathic hospitals and clinics are part of the national healthcare system. Homeopathy is just as popular in Latin America and Asia — what with India leading the movement, thanks to the presence of millions of homeopathic adherents and hundreds of thousands of qualified homeopathic medical doctors in its ranks. HOMEOPATHY IN THE US Homeopathy was well accepted from the mid-1800s to the early 1900s when the most prestigious medical schools in the US themselves were homeopathic. Do you know that the first medical association founded was, indeed, the American Institute of Homeopathy, in 1844? It took a good three years for the American Medical Association [AMA] to be inaugurated in 1847. However, by the early 1900s, the financial bond between the AMA and pharmaceutical companies was strongly established. Pharma companies evidently preferred proprietary drugs with patent rights, which could not be unreservedly manufactured. Add to this the AMA’s primary underpinning of revenue emerging from paid advertisements by the pharmaceutical industry, and you had a powerful lobby. Besides, you also had the ‘spectre’ of drug companies which began to recompense leading doctors for endorsing patented drugs. This led to the expected — physicians began to receive ‘free’ samples of these drugs. In certain instances — with excellent ‘payoffs’ in kind — from gifts, and incentives, to cars. So, there it was, or is. When conventional medicine began to be marketed much more aggressively than homeopathy ever could, the “writing on the ‘lesser’ wall” was apparent. Needless to say, aggressive marketing and hard-sell, along with other sales manoeuvres, led to the virtual vanishing of homeopathy, in the US, by the 1940s. Yet another big advantage that conventional medicine capitalised upon, at this point in time, was also the fact that only a select few were conscious of the dangerous sideeffects inherent to synthetic pharmaceutical drugs.

How things have changed today — thanks to wellinformed appreciation of drug toxicity and its damaging effects on health — and, homeopathy is again growing rapidly in the US. Figures now indicate that people in the US are slowly but surely returning to this form of treatment in dramatic numbers. This has, indeed, been a renaissance of sorts as millions have also begun to rediscover homeopathy and its manifold benefits in many other climes — both in the developed and the developing world. BENEFITS Homeopathy is effective. Scientifically conducted double-blind tests have shown that it works on all types of ailments — acute and chronic. Do you know that the first ‘blind’ tests were actually developed and conducted by homeopathic doctors, and not conventional medical doctors? It has no side-effects. In all the millions of cases treated with it, homeopathy has never been shown to be toxic to the body. What’s more, homeopathy is appropriate for treating pregnant women, infants, and children — with utmost safety. Millions of lay people — most of them without a smattering of medical or health ‘grounding’ — use it, especially in remote areas, to help themselves and their families without any hazardous physical consequences. The best part — even in the presence of an unintentionally selected or incorrect homeopathic remedy, no harm is done. The body simply pays no heed to the remedy and no dangerous effects are caused. It is economical and, therefore, easy on the pocket than prescription drugs. Another big advantage — homeopathic remedies have a long shelf-life. On the ‘flip-side’ though, it would only be appropriate to mention that homeopathic remedies, which are derived from natural substances, are not patentable. It’s, therefore, unlikely that any major pharmaceutical, or drug, company would come forward to provide large funds for wide-scale research and marketing of homeopathic medicines and products — as is the case with conventional medicine. This is one part. On the other, homeopathy, like other forms of natural medicine, including herbal medicine and nutritional supplementation, is bound to become an enduring part of the healthcare apparatus worldwide, including the US, where it has now resurfaced with transformed vitality — primarily due to its low-cost, remarkable safety, wide-ranging applicability, and also sublime efficacy. The best part — homeopathy is compatible with selfcare, and professional healthcare, at the grassroots level and elsewhere. This is reason enough why it has all the requisites to become an essential part of your and your family’s health management and wellness maintenance programme — for today and tomorrow.

Dr Rajgopal Nidamboor is a board certified wellness physician, independent researcher and editor-publisher, H&Y

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HOM[E]O TRUTHS

THE PHARMACOLOGICAL CONTEXT OF HOMEOPATHY There is new, emerging support in the area of pharmacology, or drug action, for homeopathy. This is fascinating in the context of conventional theorists’ long-standing critique and scepticism. By Dr PAUL CALLINAN

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sk a pharmacologist about the biological effects of very low concentrations of common substances on living organisms and the answer will be that there is typically very little or zero response. Ask for some theoretical backup, and in short order you will find yourself confronted by one of the pharmacological tools of trade, the Dose-Response Curve. In brief, the curve illustrates one of the rules of thumb in drug use: that an increased dose of a drug will give an increased effect, while a lowered dose of a drug will give a reduced effect, and a very low dose will give no effect at all. The pharmacologically recommended dose of a drug lies in the area of the effective dose [ED50] — the dose which produces 50 per cent of the total, or maximal effect. The homeopathic area of interest, on the other hand, lies at the very start of the ED curve, in the area of the socalled threshold dose. The area of the threshold dose is usually avoided in standard pharmacological drug testing, for two reasons. The first is that the threshold dose lies some distance from the area of the ED50, so investigating this area for drug

reaction is basically a waste of time. But, the other reason is far more interesting. The threshold dose is an area where paradoxical and contradictory results are obtained, and not easily explained in conventional terms. Again, the easy answer is to simply avoid it in experimentation. The bottom line is that for many years the pharmacologists have known of the strange results obtained in the threshold dose area, but have simply chosen to ignore them. In doing so, they have unwittingly withdrawn orthodox support for an entirely different field of medicine. ARNDT-SCHULZ LAW It is interesting that one of the earliest laws of pharmacology, known as the Arndt-Schulz Law [named after Rudolf Arndt and Hugo Paul Friedrich Schulz], had already expressed the homeopathic effect. Formulated by Arndt in 1888, and restated by Ferdinand Hueppe, a few years later, the law set the groundwork for what should have been a side-by-side development of allopathic and homeopathic medicine in the following century. It states: for every substance, small doses stimulate, moderate doses inhibit, large doses ‘kill.’ HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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Allopathic medicine, with its emphasis on moderate drug doses, works in the inhibitory part of the scale. The result is seen in the typically inhibitory medicines produced: antihistamines, antibiotics, antacids, cough suppressants and so on, laying the basis for the so-called ‘suppressant’ effect of drugs. Homeopathic medicine, on the other hand, begins at the stimulatory end of the curve, and moves to the left, into the smaller and smaller dose range. Its emphasis is on the stimulation of the body’s natural balancing mechanisms, as seen in its philosophy of the natural regeneration of the body through rebuilding of vitality, a concept also in close agreement with naturopathic thought. PIONEERING RESULTS The pioneering work of William Boyd bound the worlds of homeopathy and Arndt-Schulz together in the early 1940s with a series of tightly controlled experiments, and set the stage for work much later on as to how homeopathic medicines may work. Boyd worked with the enzyme malt diastase, which was already known to be inhibited by crude doses of the salt mercuric chloride, and measured its speed in the hydrolysis of starch. He also used a number of homeopathically prepared dilutions of mercuric chloride, including a batch at 61X, where there was no likelihood of any of the original salt remaining — it was pure water. He also worked with distilled water as a control. He showed that crude doses of mercuric chloride inhibited diastase activity, as was already wellknown, and that distilled water had no effect. But he also showed, with statistically significant results, that mercuric chloride 61X accelerated diastase activity. Now, this experiment had a number of ramifications, besides supporting the Arndt-Schulz Law. If there was no mercuric chloride in the 61X potency, it should have reacted the same as distilled water. If, on the other hand, there was a contamination of mercuric chloride, somehow in the test doses, then the activity of the enzyme should have decreased. Instead it did neither, but increased it, from the laboratory point of view. Homeopathic medicines were not only shown to work according to the ArndtSchulz Law, but also to affect enzyme action. HORMESIS: THE BREAKTHROUGH Look up the Arndt-Schulz Law in a modern textbook of pharmacology, and you will be lucky if you find it mentioned, let alone discussed. It died out of the textbooks as the allopathic interest moved further into the inhibitory part of the Arndt-Schulz curve, and as the pharmacological Dose-Response curve avoided the area of the threshold dose. It appeared that, for all its promising origins, theoretical support for homeopathy had died a natural death.

Recently, however, support for homeopathic medicine has come from a most unlikely direction: the field of toxicology, or the action of poisons. Beginning in 1960, data began to accumulate that poisonous substances were having two effects on living organisms. At high doses they inhibited metabolism and ultimately caused death, as was well-known. But, at low doses they exerted a stimulating effect, a response totally unexpected and not explainable by current medical science. Recently, the trickle turned to a torrent, as toxicologists turned to examine the new phenomenon of hormesis, the name given to the stimulatory effect of low levels of usually poisonous substances. The Arndt-Schulz Law had not died: it had simply resurfaced with a new name. The research results are incomplete, but the trend is inescapable. Evidence from experiments, both human and animal, shows hormesis as an effect occurring in all biological domains tested, with growing research support. It demonstrates that all substances [including pesticides and carcinogens] which show an inhibitory effect at high concentrations, have a stimulatory effect at low concentrations. ALPHA & DELTA CREDO The alpha curve is the most expected pattern, and is assumed to describe the actions of drugs in humans as the concentration moves from low concentrations to progressively more inhibitory ones. This curve is a tentative one, and is assigned to those conventional drugs which have not yet been fully tested for a stimulatory response. The beta curve was the most frequently observed pattern, and accounted for the human reactions to the bulk of the drugs tested. It shows a typical curve as predicted by the Arndt-Schulz Law, but [understandably] was not tested in toxic and lethal dose ranges. The two other curves, the gamma and delta forms, were recorded where data was available for biological response at lower dose ranges. However, data points for these ranges are generally less available, so the validity of these curves will be unknown until further data are available. Homeopathic research has consistently produced results showing the basic curve structure of hormesis and the Arndt-Schulz Law. But, the research goes further: as the drug substance is progressively diluted, the biological reaction alternates between stimulation and inhibition, as given by the hormesis gamma and delta curves. This periodic behaviour is called rhythmicity by homeopaths; it represents one of the several great phenomena in homeopathic medicinal action.

Dr Paul Callinan, MSc, ND, DHom, is a homeopath, biophysicist and researcher who specialises in providing scientific support for natural medicines. He has proposed scientific models for the mechanism of homeopathic medicinal action in research literature, including international seminars. A contributing editor with Australian Wellbeing magazine, author of a host of books on homeopathy, and lecturer in homeopathic medicine, Dr Callinan lives and practices clinical medicine in New South Wales, Australia.

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GRIN & BEAR IT

LAUGHTER,

THE BEST MEDICINE RIGHT PRESCRIPTION A distraught patient phoned her doctor’s office. “Is it true,” the woman wanted to know, “that the medication the doctor had prescribed was for the rest of my life?” She was told that it was. There was a moment of silence before the woman continued, “I’m wondering then just how serious is my condition? This prescription is marked ‘No Refills.” GOVERNMENT JOB As a fourth-year medical student and aspiring family physician, I was working in the family medicine clinic at the General Hospital. My patient was a downcast, middleaged woman attending for her annual physical. She’d been in a few times before, but background information was scanty, so I started a comprehensive workup: past medical history, family history, systems review, the works. When I got to the social history, she revealed that she had a mentally handicapped son. As she described the difficult life of caring for him, her voice and posture told of her sadness. She’d struggled for years, but eventually, “It was too much for me and I had to put him in Smiths Falls — the Regional Hospital just outside that town. He was there for several years.” I told her that I understood how difficult her life had been. Impressed with my keen ability to pick up on the nuances of her works, expression and posture, I asked, “I notice you speak of his stay in another town in the past. Is he not still there?” I expected to hear the unfortunate fellow had left this vale of tears. “Oh no!” she said, brightening immensely. “He moved out of town and got a job with the government.”

Lymph: to walk with a lisp Negligent: describes a condition in which you absentmindedly answer the door in your nightgown Pokemon: a Rastafarian proctologist Rectitude: the formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists. AGING, REALLY An old gentleman was on the operating table awaiting surgery and he insisted that his son, a renowned surgeon, perform the operation. As he was about to get the anaesthesia, he asked to speak to his son. “Yes, Dad, what is it?” “Don’t be nervous, son; do your best, and just remember, if it doesn’t go well, if something happens to me, your mother is going to come and live with you and your wife…” US$ UK£ EU€ “For all the money in the world, I cannot remember which old man sent this one to me!” [Culled and Collated from the ‘Net]

SOUNDS FAMILIAR As an otolaryngologist, I met an elderly lady who’d had a cold three or four weeks earlier, during which she’d developed a sensation of blockage of her ears. It still stays with her. DEFT-I-NITIONS Abdicate: to give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach Balderdash: a rapidly receding hairline Circumvent: an opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by some men Coffee: the person upon whom one coughs Esplanade: to attempt an explanation while drunk Flabbergasted: appalled over how much weight you have gained Flatulence: emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steamroller Gargoyle: olive-flavoured mouthwash

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HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

“Don’t tell me to improve my diet. I ate a carrot once and nothing happened!” Courtesy: www.glasbergen.com


LIVING WELL: LIFESTYLE

A BREATH OF FRESH, HEALTHY AIR Air is such an integral part of our lives, something we cannot live for ten minutes without. Yet, lately, it’s also become one of the most ‘effective’ ways we poison ourselves. Is there a way out — to usher in healthy air and healthy living?

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the mountains, or the granary on the horizon, and ir is everywhere, you can’t escape it. if we haven’t heard about air pollution in the news Resistance is futile: you have to breathe lately, that everything is okay. Unfortunately, to live. No element of the natural world nothing could be further from the truth. is more essential to life than air — that element which is so ubiquitous that we are often A LOT OF HOT AIR unaware of it much like the proverbial fish that A landmark study called for by the United Nations when asked to describe water replied, “What’s By RYAN N Secretary-General was conducted by 1,360 water?” HARRISON experts in 95 nations. Entitled the Millennium Did you know that millions of people live in Ecosystem Assessment, the study produced a areas where air pollution can cause serious shocking report for the whole world, warning that much health problems? That air can be polluted in both the city of the Earth’s natural resources — everything from and the country? That the air in your home may be more fresh water and clean air to productive soils and genetic dangerous than the air outside? That, because of the resources — have been depleted at an unprecedented basic nature of air and its currents, a source of pollution rate in the past 50 years. Among the findings, one of the may be in one place but its impact may be felt elsewhere? greatest concerns related to “the chemical experiments You might not have known or considered these things. humans have been conducting on the atmosphere for the Let’s face it: we are not ‘air-smart’ people. past century-and-a-half.” Many of us believe that if the sky is clear, if we can see HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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The dominant use of coal, oil, and natural gas as our sources of energy has released large quantities of carbon previously locked underground. This has substantially increased the amount of carbon dioxide in the air. This, in turn, has changed global weather systems, trapping more of the Sun’s heat within the Earth’s atmosphere, and further complicating the problem of air pollution. “The truth is we carry some responsibility for this planetary pollution burden in more ways than we realise.” It’s true that air pollution is a concern of global proportion. What’s more, the ways in which we are contributing to the pollution problem are many and varied, and there doesn’t seem to be a ‘quick and easy’ solution available to either the problem, at large, or the problem, at home. The truth is: we carry some responsibility for this planetary pollution burden in more ways than we realise. What exactly is air pollution? One of the formal definitions of air pollution given by The Energy and Resources Institute is “the presence in the atmosphere of one or more contaminants in such quality and for such duration as is injurious, or tends to be injurious, to human health or welfare, animal, or plant life.” In general, it is contamination of the air to the degree that causes health problems and damages the environment. Air pollutants consist of gaseous pollutants, odours, and what is called ‘suspended particulate matter’ or SPM, such as smoke, dust, fumes, and mist. In total, air pollution results from a variety of causes, not all of which are human controlled. For example, volcanic activity, dust storms and smoke from natural forest and grass fires contribute to chemical and particulate pollution in the air. But, as a species, humans are certainly not helping the situation. The largest source of human caused air pollution can be pinned to energy generation. Electric power plants are the ‘single largest industrial source of some of the worst air pollutants.’ The cost of energy production is high, as we continue to pump sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, carbon dioxide and mercury into the atmosphere. Additional pollution results from cars, buses and airplanes, as well as from industry and construction. Another thing to consider is that air pollution doesn’t stop at your front door. Indoor air pollution is just as insidious as its outdoor counterpart, and sometimes even more difficult to detect. The physical, chemical and biological characteristics of indoor air pollutants are such that they do not always produce easily recognised impacts on a person’s health. It sounds bleak: wherever you are, there’s a good chance that you are breathing unclean, impure, unsafe air. HEALTH IMPACT OF AIR POLLUTION The effects of air pollution on health are quite complex, because there are many different sources and their individual effects vary from one to the other.

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Additionally, not all people respond to pollutants the same way. Trying to categorise what pollutants produce which symptoms is, therefore, problematic. In fact, this is precisely one of the reasons that make air pollution so insidious. Think back to the ‘London Fog of December 1952’ in which over 4,000 people unexpectedly died due to industrialisation-related air pollution. It looked like fog to them, but was something much more lethal. It happened then, and it is still happening today. How are we to recognise this ‘invisible’ enemy? COMMON POLLUTANTS OF OUTSIDE AIR Each of the following toxic pollutants can be easily found in air all across the world. Each is considered dangerous by the Environmental Protection Agency [EPA] and the World Health Organisation [WHO]. • Sulphur dioxide • Nitrogen oxide • Suspended Particulate Matter [SPM] • Lead • Carbon monoxide • Respirable Particulate Matter [RPM] • Carbon dioxide • Chlorofluorocarbons [CFCs] • Ground Ozone • Mercury While we may not be able to see the individual pollutants that are often abundant in the air, we do know that many of the known pollutants of outdoor air are clearly toxic to our systems. For example, carbon monoxide [CO], which is produced by the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels, including gasoline and wood, lowers the amount of oxygen that enters the blood. This can slow down our reflexes, making us confused and lethargic while simultaneously starving our bodies of the oxygen needed to maintain health. Lead in the air, present as a result of petrol, diesel, lead batteries, paints etc., can cause nervous system damage and digestive problems as well as cancer. Lead affects children in particular. What we call smog is actually ground ozone [not to be confused with the ‘good’ ozone that is miles up in the atmosphere and which protects us from the Sun’s rays]. Ground ozone is largely the product of industries and motor vehicles and it causes our eyes to itch, burn and water. It also lowers our resistance to colds and pneumonia and is directly related to asthma and other upper respiratory tract ailments. All these pollutants and many more are virtually impossible to avoid. The fact that they are in the air means they are easily spread far and wide. Does it surprise you that pesticides have been discovered in Antarctica, where they have never been used? Scientists speculate that is the effect of aerial transport — what is released in one place may very well end up in another. So, it’s easy to surmise that there really isn’t anywhere out of the house where you are breathing pollution-free air.


Yes, the air inside your home or office may not be much better, and in view of the fact that many of us spend more time indoors than out, is something to seriously consider. Have you ever found yourself feeling mysteriously worse when inside a certain room or building than when outside? Or, have you actually become sick because of ‘something in the air’ at work or a similar setting? These are both relatively common experiences, especially in the workplace and in older buildings. Health professionals relate the first scenario with what has become Sick Building Syndrome [SBS] — a situation in which building occupants experience acute symptoms of ill-health that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but which cannot be pinned to a specific illness or other cause. In contrast, the second scenario would be deemed a Building Related Illness [BRI] as symptoms of diagnosable illness are identified and can be attributed directly to airborne building contaminants. COMMON POLLUTANTS OF INDOOR AIR The following toxic pollutants are commonly found in indoor air. Each is considered dangerous by EPA and WHO. • Tobacco smoke • Pesticides • Biological pollutants [e.g., pollen, mites, parasites, bacteria etc.]

• Volatile organic compounds [e.g., solvents and chemicals from perfumes, hair sprays, glues, air fresheners etc.,] • Formaldehyde • Asbestos • Radon • Lead In either circumstance, people experience poor health and disease-related symptoms because of poor indoor air quality. If this sounds too farfetched or unconvincing to you, consider this: In 1992 the World Bank [an internationally-assisted development bank which exists to fight poverty and improve the living standards of people in the developing world] designated indoor air pollution in developing countries as one of the four most critical global environmental problems. Indoor air pollution is a real threat, especially considering the fact that many children, elderly, and sick people spend the majority of their time indoors. According to The Energy and Resources Institute, “although many hundreds of separate chemical agents have been identified [as contributing to indoor air pollution], the four most serious pollutants are particulates, carbon monoxide, polycyclic organic matter, and formaldehyde.” In addition to the big four, pollutants such as nitrogen oxide, lead, asbestos, and radon are also commonly found indoor air pollutants that can be harmful to our health. HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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Where does it come from? Other than the obvious answer — from outside — some of our cultural tendencies make a bad situation worse. Tobacco smoke, for example, “generates a wide range of harmful chemicals and is a major cause of ill–health, as it is known to cause cancer, not only to the smoker, but affecting passive smokers too.” Radon, a radioactive gas that can accumulate inside a home, usually originates from the rocks and soil under the house. If not ‘piped out’ from under the house, it can leak inside, increasing the risk of lung cancer. Other pollutants are released more or less continually by everyday things like new or damp carpet, furniture, household cleaning supplies, and air fresheners. When you add such a collection of toxic elements to the fact that many buildings and homes are inadequately ventilated, you have a recipe for serious trouble. The EPA suggests that “if too little air enters a home, pollutants can accumulate to levels that can pose health and comfort problems… homes that are designed and constructed to minimise the amount of outdoor air that can ‘leak’ into and out of the home may have higher pollutant levels than other homes.” ARE YOU A SUFFERER? Immediate effects from indoor air pollutants may show up after a single exposure or repeated exposures and include: • Irritation of eyes, nose and throat • Headaches • Dizziness • Fatigue. Long-term effects may show up either years after exposure, or only after long, or repeated periods of exposure and include: • Respiratory diseases • Heart disease • Cancer. AH, FOR A BREATH OF GOOD AIR Taking steps to help reduce outside air pollution is a socially, fiscally, and environmentally responsible approach to this worldwide problem. Many organisations exist that can give you expert advice on how to do your part. Some ideas that are easy to adopt include: walking or bicycling when possible, rather than driving; using public transportation; purchasing a hybrid motor vehicle; looking after and tending for the trees in your neighbourhood; switching off lights and fans when they are not needed; composting leaves rather than burning them; and, using only unleaded gasoline and compressed natural gas [CNG]. Considering the fact that we raise our children, care for our sick and elderly, and eat, sleep, and relax all in

our homes, it seems rational to suggest that in order to protect the health and well-being of our families and loved ones, a crucial step is keeping indoor air clean and clear of as many pollutants as possible. How do we accomplish such a monumental task when so many everyday items that we own or use in our homes are potential pollutants? Perhaps, unsurprisingly, one of the ways to improve the air quality in your home is by inviting nature’s purifier indoors. According to a two-year study conducted by NASA and the Associated Landscape Contractors of America, keeping healthy houseplants can effectively clean up a large percentage [up to 87 per cent] of indoor pollutants. Some of the most active and effective plants for this use include: Dracaenas, palms, ferns, English ivy, peace lilies, mums, daisies and spider plants. Obviously, the more plants the better, so this is a recommendation best suited for people who have a green thumb. After all, plants can only clean the air if they are healthy themselves. For those with less botanical tendencies, the best way that you can ensure the air in your home is as pollutant free as possible is by purchasing and using a high quality air purifier. A good rule of thumb where air purifiers are concerned is that you get what you pay for. Beyond that, keep in mind that the best devices will have several features, including: • Energy efficiency — it should only cost a few pennies a day to run your air purifier • Quiet operation — you should not substitute air pollution with sound pollution or you’ll be less likely to use your purifier • Easy filter replacement — if it is difficult to change the filters, chances are you won’t do so as often as directed, and that defeats the whole purpose • Long filter life — if the filters have to be replaced frequently, you may meet with unexpected expenses • High-quality fan — if the fan is poorly made or inadequate for the job, you may risk costly repairs, or poor performance. • Warranty — be sure that your purifier is covered by at least a two-year warrantee in the event that it needs to be replaced or repaired. Using a high quality air purifier can dramatically affect your health in a short period of time. Some report breathing and feeling better within hours. When combined with lifestyle choices that espouse the use of natural, chemical-free personal care products, household cleansers and pesticides, indoor air quality is dramatically improved, resulting in fewer colds, illnesses and long-term diseases. Implementing such changes is as important as clean air is to a person’s overall wellbeing — this could well be one of the best things you’d do for yourself and your loved ones, right now.

Ryan N Harrison is a US-based holistic health educator and consultant in private practice. He has taught holistic nutrition, therapeutic herbalism and natural health for several years — in traditional and online settings.

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LIVING WELL: LIFESTYLE

WATER & WEIGHT TO GO Water, nature’s most simple, yet wholesome beverage, is crucial not only for good health, but also to lose weight and shrink fat.

W

ater makes up almost 80 per cent of the human body. It works in ways you may not have contemplated. First, things first. The best thing to do is drink water before and during a meal. Water makes you feel full quickly. In the process, it helps you to stop eating. What’s more, you can drink water throughout the day. Besides, you can also mix the beverage with lowcalorie squash and drink the concoction anytime you like. Also, wouldn’t it be a great idea for you to add milk-free-sugarless green tea, a great antioxidant, to your drinking water, and sip a cup now and then? You will feel not only full, but more satisfied because you will be able to keep unwanted hunger at bay.

INTENT NEEDED Water makes you feel better even when you lose weight — you do not get that exhausted feeling which would have made just the thought of the word, weight loss, a difficult thing to accept, otherwise. It ain’t easy, of course, to lose weight with water, or a firm intent. Because, when your body burns fat deposits, it bumps into contaminants and chemicals stored within the fat. This emerging battle can cause you to have fever-like symptoms. Yet, the fact is — it is only by drinking water aplenty can you provide the means to flush contaminants out of your body, feel comfortable and healthy. It may also, of course, not be easy for you to drink water HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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continually — besides this, you should know how much water is good enough, or not good enough. Here are a few simple tricks you can use to balance the gap, and make weight loss with water work for you without any deleterious effects: Write a diary or journal, and make an entry every time you drink water during the course of the day, or wakeful hours. Your minimal intake of water should be one-anda-half to two litre, everyday. Drink a few glasses more, if you want to reduce weight In the event you find it difficult to keep a tab, remember to use pointers to drink water. Have tags — when you brush your teeth, eat breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner. Or, use prompts such as drinking a glass of water, before you leave for work, or half-hour before lunch Keep in ‘touch’ with water always. Keep a bottle of water wherever you are — at work, or home. Make sure you have an additional bottle that is always full. However, there is also something which you should know about drinking water that may radically affect weight gain and loss and lead to water retention and kidney problems. Do you know that water weighs about 10kg per gallon — which is reason enough why we could get rid of a few fat bulges by losing some retained water quickly? How does this work? Simple. We lose retained water by drinking more water. We need to, therefore, get into the habit of drinking more water than our body actually needs. This will only induce our body to think that it need not amass extra water. Once this is achieved, you have more than

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enough water to simply expel that extra water stored up in your cells. THINGS TO DO You know this, don’t you? Your kidneys need adequate quantity of water to do their job. If you are not hydrated adequately, the kidneys go into a spell — in other words, they are under pressure. In order to compensate, they seek the assistance of the liver. The liver is the organ that metabolises fat into energy. With the SOS now goading the liver to compensate kidney function, the liver does not burn stored fat as it plays the proxy role. This is, again, a bad thing. You need to, therefore, drink more water to enable the kidneys to function at their optimal level and allow the liver to do its job — i.e., burn fat. So, there you are. Also, there is more to losing weight with water than what meets the mind. For instance, when you try to burn extra fat, during dieting, you need water to do the normal work of processing waste from our bodies. This, again, calls for extra water to process the stored fat and metabolic wastes — which is the outcome of the process. One more thing. When you cannot resist the temptation of eating sweets, or going on a binge, notwithstanding your vow to lose weight, drink a glass of water quickly. Water helps you fill your stomach; it will circumvent the urge for eating that delicious, fatty food, a second-helping, you were lured to. Now, the optimal outcome. When you make water work for you — you will not only lose weight, but also feel light, energetic, fit and active, sooner than later.


GOOD FOOD

By TARLA DALAL

THE PASTA OF GOOD HEALTH This adorable pasta is full of fibre. The use of whole-wheat pasta and mixed vegetables makes it not only fibre-rich and healthy, but also a special dish — in a league of its own. Preparation Time: 10 mins Cooking Time: 10 mins Makes 2 servings INGREDIENTS • For the sauce • 1/2 cup finely chopped onions • 1/2 cup finely chopped mixed vegetables • 2 tsp finely chopped garlic [lehsun] • 1/2 cup low fat milk • 1 tsp corn flour • 1 tsp oil • Salt to taste FOR THE PASTA • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pasta, cooked • 1 tsp finely chopped garlic [lehsun] • 1 whole dry Kashmiri red chilli • 1/2 tsp oil FOR THE GARNISH • 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley

METHOD For the sauce • Heat the oil in a non-stick pan and add the onions • Sauté the onions for 4-6 minutes till they are soft over a low flame • Add the vegetables, garlic and salt and sauté again for 5-7 minutes • Add ¼ cup water and cover and simmer till the vegetables are soft • Add the milk and corn flour and mix well • Bring to a boil, add the pepper and keep aside. HOW TO PROCEED • Heat the oil in a non-stick pan and add the garlic and red chilli and sauté for a few seconds • Add the pasta and toss well • Add the prepared sauce and mix well • Serve hot topped with the parsley. TIP You may use whole wheat fusilli, penne or tagliatelle. NUTRIENT VALUES Amount Energy

Protein Carb

109gm

3.2gm 16.1gm 2.2gm 1.0gm

96kcal

Fat Fibre

[Courtesy: www.tarladalal.com] Tarla Dalal was a noted Indian food writer, chef, best-selling cookbook author and host of cooking shows like Tarla Dalal Show and Cook It Up With Tarla Dalal.

HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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GOOD FOR YOU

THE HEADY, BRAINY NUTRIENT Phosphatidyl serine [PS] is a memory nutrient, a real tonic for the brain. You’d also call it the brain’s personal bodyguard, loyally protecting each and every neuron round the clock.

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large fatty substances that hold together t may seem incredible that you can safely cell membranes. All cells depend on their boost mental clarity by consuming a littleprotective membranes for survival, but known nutrient with a long-winded moniker. nerve cells in the brain especially depend Phosphatidyl serine [PS] has rapidly been By Dr RICHARD on this outermost layer in order to receive gaining notice and credibility over the past 15 FIRSHEIN and conduct the impulses that allow us to years. More clinical trials have been run on think and move. Without PS, our neurons PS than on any other nutrient targeting the could not manufacture, package, or send out the brain. Over fifty human trials demonstrate that, when neurotransmitters that travel from nerve cell to nerve used as a dietary supplement in a wide range of doses, cell, relaying messages throughout the brain. This is phosphatidyl serine is incredibly effective at conserving the secret to the heady success of PS. stores of brainpower. I like to think of PS as the brain’s personal Here’s what Dr Parris Kidd, a well-known proponent bodyguard, loyally protecting each and every neuron of PS, has to say about this nutrient: “PS is the first — around the clock, monitoring the comings and goings and only — memory nutrient of promise. I have seen of substances through the membrane and, most elderly patients with severe memory lapses recall important, guarding the priceless intelligence within. previously forgotten names within minutes after being By recovering synaptic and electrical activity on a supplement programme of PS.” within neurons, PS actually heals the brain — this PS is a building block of all your brain cells. It’s encourages the restoration of mental function. Many one of four molecules known as the phospholipids,

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studies show that PS, when administered to elderly subjects in various states of cognitive deterioration, significantly improves attention, concentration, recall of numbers and words, verbal ability, and short-term memory. Dr Thomas Crook, founder of two memory assessment clinics in Bethesda, Maryland, US, has used tests of basic, daily tasks to demonstrate that PS can facilitate recall of telephone numbers and misplaced objects, improve sight recognition, sharpen short-term memory, and help the mind focus on reading and conversation. Most studies on the benefits indicate that 300mg of PS per day is optimal dose for treating the mental malfunctioning caused by agerelated cognitive decline. PS not only preserves the skills we need to get through the day but enhances mood; it has been shown to increase sociability and decrease depression and apathy among subjects. Most important, PS improves quality of life [QoL]. The best part â&#x20AC;&#x201D; even younger people can use it, with a healthy diet and exercise, as prevention against future memory loss. The following are some of the ways in which PS has been found to boost brainpower. Behaviour. When mental functioning deteriorates, QoL and self-sufficiency often fall by the wayside. A study by G Palmieri and colleagues in The Clinical Trials Journal found that PS improved the ability of elderly subjects with moderate cognitive decline to complete activities required for independent daily living. PS also eased apathy and social withdrawal caused by cognitive deterioration. Brain physiology. New technologies, like PET [positron emission tomography] scans and EEGs that monitor the brain in action provide further proof of the strength of PS. The EEG rhythms measured in the brain reflect the activity of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that is often depleted with age, resulting in cognitive deterioration. A study showed that PS boosted the EEG rhythm in healthy young males by an average of 15-20 per cent. PET scans, on the other hand, track glucose metabolism in the brain: the more glucose is being consumed, the better the mind is working. The study indicated that subjects taking PS demonstrated higher brain activity on PET scans. Memory. The largest study on PS to date, conducted by B Cenacchi and colleagues in The Journal of Aging, monitored the effects of PS on 425 subjects with moderate to severe age-related cognitive decline. The researchers discovered that the nutrient benefited subjects in long-term memory storage, long-term memory retrieval, and total recall of past events.

Mood. Not only does PS improve cognitive functioning in the elderly, it can also repair associated mood problems. A study of elderly women on PS showed that the nutrient reduced anxiety and alleviated vertigo and depression. A study on elderly men suggested that PS can similarly boost mood. It comes as no surprise that lowered PS levels in the red blood cells are found in subjects with clinical depression. Stress. Phosphatidyl serine can be beneficial in younger individuals â&#x20AC;&#x201D; it also prevents later brain deterioration and harmful effects of stress on the body. In The European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, P Monteleone and fellow researchers studied young, healthy men subjected to exercise-induced stress by bicycling to near-exhaustion. Men who took PS for ten days prior to the exercise session had reduced production of cortisol, which is usually released during stressful periods and can damage muscle as well as impair brain function.

Dr Richard Firshein, Founder-Director of The Firshein Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York City, is a leading innovator and authority in the field of preventative and nutritional medicine, integrating both Eastern and Western medical practices. He is Board Certified in Family Medicine and has served as professor of family medicine. An internationally recognised leader in the field of integrative medicine and healthy aging, a cancer researcher, prolific author and writer, Dr Firshein has written several groundbreaking books, including the bestselling Reversing Asthma, Your Asthma-Free Child, The Nutraceutical Revolution and, most recently, The Vitamin Prescription [For Life].

HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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FIGHTING FIT

HIT THE WEIGHTS Do you want to be lean and limp, or lean and firm? The choice is, of course, yours.

By KERRY DULIN

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o one said that this was going to be easy, but few things of value are. Deal with it. If you’re going to go for the healthy look you might as well go the extra mile and actually be healthy. When the fat starts to go, and it will, you want to have something to show. You are here because you wanted to get ripped, not skinny. So, plan on hitting the weights three times a week for an hour. Stick to basic, compound movements exercising the major muscle groups. • Bench press • Seated press • Curls • Squat • Dead lift • Crunch. The above movements will work the entire body and when done properly will dramatically enhance your physique.

AB RULES How often should I work my abs? 3-4 times a week. Let’s skip the anatomy lesson here and just focus on your abdominal muscles, which are divided into upper, lower and sides [intercostals and obliques, external and internal oblique, rectus abdominus, transverse abdominus and quadratus lumborum]. Your goal is to hit them all. Couch crunch. Lie on your back in front of your couch with your feet on the cushion. Your calves should be at a 90-degree angle to your thighs. Now, with your hands clasped behind your head [do not pull against your head], raise your right elbow to your left knee. Lower yourself and repeat with your left elbow to right knee. Repeat this movement ten times. For the next ten reps, keep your elbows together, raise your shoulder as high as you can and your elbows between your knees.

Alternating between the side and the middle works the upper and side portions of the abdominal panel. How many reps? You’ll know. Don’t cheat yourself. If you can’t do many that’s okay. Do what you can. When the burn sets in, stop. Rest for 1-2 minutes and repeat. When you have completed three sets call it a day. It’s not that tough. After your muscles have adjusted and the initial soreness goes away, you should be increasing the number of repetitions that you can do. Do you want a mid-section that you can be proud of, then prove it. Don’t stop until you feel the burn. VARIATION Classic crunch. Lying on your back with your feet flat on the floor and hands clasped behind your head, bring your elbows to your knees. Hold for 2-3 seconds, while deliberately crunching [flexing] your abs. Your shoulders should be off of the ground during this time. Repeat for ten repetitions. For the next ten reps bring your right elbow to your left knee and repeat with your left elbow to your right knee. Follow the same pattern as for couch crunches. Leg raises. Lie on your back with legs flat against the floor and hands at your sides; slowly raise your feet as high as possible. Your legs should remain straight during this movement. From the highest point, slowly return your legs to the floor and repeat. Go for the burn, once again, and repeat as above. These are great for working the lower abs. Some people use resistance to work the abs, such as holding a weight against their chest during the movement. That’s fine, if you want large abdominal muscles that stick out beyond the plane of the stomach. I prefer the flat look and do not add weight. Why? Talk about over-training. My abs are better than the other guy and I don’t train them nearly as hard. Neither should you.

Kerry Dulin, a world-renowned fitness guru, first got into professional bodybuilding at age 40. He won his first bodybuilding competition at 41. Now 55, with a physique that would put someone half his age to shame, Dulin has what he calls “a manageable programme,” 12 top trophies to show for his fitness endeavours and three health and fitness websites. He lives in the US.

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HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015


WHOLE & SOUL

YOUR ATTITUDE SHAPES YOUR DESTINY The way we react to opportunities that come in life depends a lot on our attitude. In fact, the world is nothing but our vision enveloped by our attitude.

I

raised, the kind of circle of influence they had n the Mahabharata, the great teacher around themselves, and the inner desires they Dronacharya told his disciple Yudhishthira nurtured. to go into the world and find one person who The law of nature in this world is to make was worse than him. At the same time he asked one proud and also infatuate the ego. Even a Duryodhana to go and find at least one person pauper is proud of his penny. Rich people are who was better than him. Both had learnt decorating themselves with better diamond from the same teacher and both had become jewellery than other rich people, and the poor competent in their own ways. But, the way they By are sleeping over better rags than other poor saw the world showed that they were in totally RADHANATH people. Almost everyone is competing against different frames of mind. SWAMI their peers to get more prestigious positions. Yudhishthira came back and reported his Almost everyone wants honour and respect. This is the findings. In spite of carefully searching, he claimed that nature of illusion — to pull our consciousness down to he could not find even one person worse than himself; the egoistic platform. But our goal is different. everyone he met had some good quality which he himself We have to struggle against the tendency of egotism did not possess. So, his constant observation was of his and exploitation and we have to take the position own personal defects and others’ good qualities. On the of being humble; not to exploit but to serve, not to other hand, Duryodhana came back and claimed that he seek respect but to give respect. If we just try our could not find even one person better than himself; he best, god will give us the power to succeed. We can, had tried his best, but he had realised that every person thus, experience the highest treasure of true spiritual had at least one defect that he himself did not possess. humility. This ‘ups’ our humility quotient — it also What determined their different conclusions and helps us to understand the greatness and glory of the visions of the world around them? Their attitude, Supreme Lord, including the import of ultimate bliss. which was controlled by the culture in which they were Radhanath Swami a spiritual guide, is the author of the bestselling book, The Journey Home. To know more about his work on leadership and spirituality, visit www.tulsibooks.com. Website: www.radhanathswami.com

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HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015


POISE & BALANCE

ALL ABOUT TRIDOSHAS The tridoshas — vata, pitta and kapha — are responsible for every physiological and psychological process that takes place within the body and mind. They are the sublime, dynamic forces that determine growth and also decay.

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nervous system by modern physiology can he Tridoshas [tri meaning three; doshas be identified with vata. The entire chemical meaning basic physical energies] are process operating in the human body can the primary and essential factors of the be attributed to pitta, including the enzymes, human body, or sthulasarira that govern our hormones and the complete nutritional system. entire physical structure and function. They The activities of the skeletal and the anabolic are derived from the panchmahabhutas — and, system, actually the entire physical volume of just like mahabhutas, all three doshas too By PREETI MANDAWEWALA an organism, can be considered as kapha. cannot be detected with our senses, but their When the doshas are in balance, i.e., in a qualities can be appreciated. Each dosha is a state of equilibrium, we remain healthy. As combination of any two of the five bhutas with Charaka, the great Ayurvedic sage, explained, “Vata, pitta the predominance of one — vata or vayu, pitta and kapha and kapha maintain the integrity of the living sthulasarira in Sanskrit. in their normal state and combine, so as to make man • Vata is wind [from the air element] a complete being with his sense organs [indriyas] • Pitta is bile [from the fire element] possessed of strength, good complexion and assured of • Kapha is mucous [from a combination of water and longevity.”                                                     earth elements]. It is only when there is imbalance within the three The tridoshas — vata, pitta and kapha — are responsible elements that disease is caused. Also, since the doshas for every physiological and psychological process that are the strongest in the constitution, they usually have takes place within the body and mind. They are the the greatest tendency to increase. When this happens, dynamic forces that determine growth and also decay. one is most susceptible to illnesses associated with an Every physical characteristic, mental capacity and the increase of the element in question. emotional tendency of a human being can, therefore, be It is also important to realise that the three elements explained in terms of the tridoshas.  are forces, and not substances. Most of the physical phenomena ascribed to the HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

49


Kapha is not peremptorily mucous; it is the force that causes mucous to arise. Similarly, pitta is not bile, but it is a force that causes the bile to be produced. It is equally important to understand that the three doshas within any person keep changing constantly, due to the doshic qualities of a specific lifestyle and environment, such as time and season.                                                                                                According to Ayurveda, tridoshas, along with regulating the body functions and governing its proper functioning also determines the unique constitution of the sarira. For example, vata has its seat in the intestinal area, pitta in the stomach and kapha in the lung area. They govern the creation, preservation and dissolution of bodily tissue. Vata element or humour is metabolic, nervous energy. Pitta is the catabolic, fire energy. Kapha is the anabolic, nutritive energy. Vata is made up of two elements space and air; it is quick, cold and dry by nature. This dosha initiates and promotes biological activity responsible for all internal and external movements of the body. In case of imbalance, vata prakriti individuals, who are quick in their mental process and initiation of action, tend to suffer from diseases of the neurological system, especially motor functions. The diseases are pronounced during old age, which is the period of vata. The diseases mostly affects the lower parts of the body, since they are the predominant seats of vatadosha. Also, individuals belonging to this type suffer from angina. Pitta is hot and precise by nature. This dosha is responsible for generating body heat, metabolism and certain psychological attributes of the individual. People of this prakriti are sharp, quick in action and normally possess a good intellect as well as grasping power. The pitta prakriti persons are prone to diseases of the digestive and metabolic systems. The diseases mostly affect the abdomen, i.e., the area between the chest and umbilicus. Kapha prakriti or dosha consists of prithvi [earth] and jala [water]. Thus, kapha is solid and steady by nature. The main function of this dosha is to promote healthy body tissue and maintain the balance of fat, water and other fluids.     The kapha prakriti endows the individual with a good physique and strong perseverance, but they are slow in their activities. The cold quality of kapha results in poor appetite as their agni [fire] or digestion is poor. In case of imbalance, such individuals tend to suffer from the diseases of the respiratory system, especially phlegmatic disorders. The diseases normally affect the upper parts of the body, i.e., the chest and above. The diseases are often pronounced during the early ages [childhood], which is the ‘peak’ period of kapha.

All the same, disease and suffering may occur if any element is impure or out of balance. Yoga helps us to purify the three elements and restore balance and health, and unfolds the inner powers and abilities contained in each element. In fact, yoga is one of the most powerful ways to restore health, because it gives us the means to bring even elements, that are natural enemies, into a harmonious relationship with each other. A balanced sequence of asana that includes some movement and some stillness allows us to regulate fire as well as to harmonise the earth and air elements, the two natural ‘enemies.’ The Hatha Yoga Pradipika states, “Asana gives one steadiness [firmness] of body and mind, lightness [flexibility] of the limbs and absence of disease, and by perfection in asanas, the lazy body is transformed to the level of the vibrant mind and they together are cultured to reach the level of the serenity of the Self.” That is, the steadiness of earth and the lightness of air can be alchemically blended through the proper use of asana, even though they are natural enemies. Certain pranayama techniques can also be used to identify where imbalances lie in the elements of the body, and to consciously rebalance them. One of the best ways of doing this is by learning the natural order of the elements in the body. Earth and water are at the base, below the navel; fire is in the middle of the torso, and air and space reside in the upper body. Maintaining awareness of the three elements when we practice asanas, pranayama and meditation, supports the proper distribution of the energy into the elements. As the prana moves up and down in the body, we awaken certain parts of the body with consciousness and energy, while coaxing the elements to come into balance. The recommended asanas that help to control the tridoshas are — uttanasana, matsyendrasana, pashchimottanasana, suryanamaskara, padhastasana, bhujangasana, halasan, and dhanurasana.

Dr Preeti Mandawewala, PhD, comes from a traditional Marwadi business family. She first discovered, as housewife, her love for yoga and completed Yogacharya certification followed by Yogavachaspati. A few years later, she learned all she could about chakra meditation and pursued her doctorate in the subject. She conducts regular workshops and has found chakra meditation to be therapeutically effective for acidity, spondylitis, diabetes, high blood pressure, migraine, thyroid disorders and tennis elbow, among other health issues. She lives in Mumbai.

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HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015


BY INVITATION

THE POWER OF HUMILITY When you are waxing too lyrical about your achievements, at the job interview, you ought to bring balance and ‘sell’ some humility by giving credit to others. This will work for you.

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selling the company to you. They won’t go out hen you are selling yourself on of their way to tell you why you shouldn’t join paper to achieve job meetings, them. Moreover, they represent a company humility has little or no role to that has a product or service to sell. play. But during the meeting it can play They may invest big money every year in an important part as you may sometimes By their own PR, sales and marketing promotions. need to sell it. Most buyers [employers] like ALAN JONES So, here’s what you do — before the meeting to feel that they are getting somewhere. get hold of their sales literature and find the They expect to be able to find a few chinks bit where they tell you what their products’ greatest in your armour. If you ‘over-sell’ they might begin to weakness is. You might find it next to the section think that you are a candidate for canonisation and highlighting what it can’t do. If it’s not there you might must be too good to be true. This is professionally stumble across it under the heading, ‘Why you shouldn’t frustrating for them and, thus, disadvantageous for buy our product.’ Now turn up for that meeting and do you. You must be sensitive to this and if you feel you what you’ve got to do. In the world of recruitment we like are knocking them for a six all the time you ought to to feel that it’s all about getting the right person for the take your foot off the gas. If you are waxing too lyrical right role. In a sense it is, but it’s a very imprecise world, about your achievements then sell some humility by a world in which the right person didn’t even get invited giving credit to others. Throw them a bone to chew to the meeting because they were far too modest on their on if you perceive that they are getting hungry. CV. If you are by nature modest, fine, but it won’t serve It is much more likely, however, that you are in you well at these meetings. Everything you say during more danger of under-selling through an excess of the meeting must be true and supportable, so stick humility. Deference can be more marked in some with those guiding principles and you can’t go wrong. cultures than in others. In a more classless society This is the bottom line. You can’t afford to run the like the USA, for example, job seekers are on the risk of competing with others not half as good as whole more psychologically disposed towards you, but who are quite willing, and prepared, to ‘talk and in tune with the concept of ‘self-promotion’ the talk.’ For they will win, and you will lose. Should whereas in India, and to a lesser extent the UK, you need any more convincing, consider this. Think self-promotion can be a more alien concept. about your colleagues in your present or previous But wherever you go business is business and an organisation. Some of them I’m sure were really on top ‘interview’ is a business meeting — no more, no less. So, of their game and respected by everyone. Others were you may still be harbouring doubts about the necessity average, some mediocre and some downright bad [so, of selling yourself in a competitive marketplace. You which category are you in?]. Well, if recruiting people may even find it in some way distasteful. In which case was such an exact science how come all those poor take succour from this. If the buyers you are going to performers got themselves hired? You get the point? meet are in the private sector they have something Right? Think aloud; act smartly and don’t react. to sell and they will, if their need is urgent and your You will win. skills rare in the marketplace, do a pretty good job of Alan Jones, a career counsellor of international repute, is the author of five books, including Winning at Interview, How to Write a Winning CV, and How to Build a Successful Career — all notable best-sellers. He lives in Wiltshire, UK.

MAY 2015 | HOMEOPATHY & YOU

51


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LIFE COACH

LITERAL LISTENING Literal listening is about listening exactly to, and of, the choice of words that people use when they speak to you and taking them at face value.

M

cluster them, they would be as follows: ost conventional books on First of all, he feels that what is happening communication articulate on the at office is completely out of his control importance of listening and also Secondly, he does not pilot himself techniques that help us to listen more through the activities of the day, but sort of effectively. Some common techniques that are floats around from one task to another typically discussed include: Thirdly, he sees the most critical • Face the person By VINESH tasks as something that he needs • Make eye contact SUKUMARAN to end up doing as a result of other • Respond verbally circumstances, rather than directing • Respond non-verbally himself towards certain tasks out of his own will. • Paraphrase Finally, he believes that new assignments and • Ask questions deadlines cannot be controlled by him. • Don’t try to provide solutions, and so on. This is a classic case of a person facing While the above techniques are quite useful to help certain challenges in life that he cannot solve, someone listen better, the real solutions to a person’s but tells you in a crystal-clear form as to what problems come by moving to the next level of listening. is happening inside his head. This leaves you This is what I call Literal Listening. Literal Listening is with useful clues for a workable solution. about listening exactly to the choice of words that people What eventually helped this corporate executive was use when they speak to you and taking them at face a series of coaching sessions that first of all helped value. him establish the fact that he ‘is in control’ of his work I was recently coaching a senior corporate executive to and not the other way around. To help him internalise overcome some of his work–related challenges and be the credo and produce tangible results we started with more effective while in office. One of his big challenges gaining control over small tasks at work. We, thereafter, was that he would not end up getting to the most critical moved on to more complex tasks. The next step was areas of work, or the most crucial tasks that would give to start planning and prioritising more effectively so him maximum results in the shortest possible time. To that the most critical factors are addressed before paraphrase my coaching conversation with him, this was anything else. In other words, this epitomises the what exactly he said and how he said to me: idea of starting with small areas of work, yet again, “I come into office. One things happens after another and eventually being able to exercise prioritisation and by the time I deal with them, the day gets over” over all areas of work in one’s span of control. “When I try to do what I most need to do, nothing Just come to think of it — the whole transformation was seems to be in place” possible by ‘literally listening’ to what exactly my client “I never end up doing the most critical tasks” was telling us at the start, and how he was saying, or “I see new assignments and deadlines coming towards conveying, it. This opened the door to distil and analyse me in an uncontrollable manner.” actual problems that undermined his challenges and This made a few things crystal clear to me about prevented him from overcoming, or surmounting, them. his beliefs, mindset and feelings about work. If I could

Vinesh Sukumaran is a Bengaluru-based applications specialist in behavioural dynamics and neurolinguistic psychology. A writer and coach, Sukumaran’s principal area of work is keyed to helping organisations and individuals apply neuropsychology to perform better at work and live more fulfilling lives.

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MIXED BAG

AHOY, THE LISTERINE DIET “Eureka!” I’ve evolved a brand-new way of not getting fat, but getting thin day-by-day. Yet, I’d advice you not to practice it for more than ten years, or you’ll become so slim that when you try to sip a cold drink through the straw, chances are you may slip through and fall into the bottle.

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She is not alone. The ‘Scarsdale Diet’ made re you ready to read my revolutionary its author a millionaire and the ‘F-Plan Diet’ is diet? Okay. Settle down in your selling volumes by the metric ton. Closer home, favourite chair and relax with a one kg By RUBY Rama Bans wrote a book on the subject but bag of wafers. Come on, you haven’t started LILAOWALA then it’s sensible, down-to-earth and certainly the diet yet — you are only reading about there was a parallel between what she wrote it. So eat, drink and be merry, for today and and the way she lived her life. But, then Rama is an tomorrow, and think of dieting, once you have had your exception. full fill. Most phoren diet books have evolved slowly through First things, first. When you feel hungry, gargle with autobiographical notes, chapters on how the intestines two tablespoons of Listerine, or any other mouth-wash. work, charts of calorific contents of lentil soup and milkIt will give your mouth a wonderful antiseptic feeling and shakes, so that anybody reviewing the book had to read it ‘kill’ all your taste-buds. Carry a flask filled with Listerine a second and third time before s/he could grasp the diet to all the parties you attend so you will not be tempted to and write on it. Now having gained valuable information, touch a pakora or gulab jamun, or any other delicacy in I propose to write my own book, the synopsis of which I sight. can give you in advance. The diet?  That was the diet — all of it!  Actually, I don’t Chapter 1:  I used to be fat, really obese [all lies, but the want this diet to be published without any publicity, book must have a dramatic opening]. I used to eat like because great discoveries like this one deserve greater a pig and, therefore, looked like one [more lies]. When rewards. I want to write a whole book on it. However, I left the house, I had to be pushed out of the house since it’s a book on dieting, it will have to be a ‘slim by two servants. I will even publish ‘before’ and ‘after’ volume.’ It will be more eagerly awaited than Salman photographs of me with trick photography. Rushidie’s new book because all the publicity and Chapter 18: Your small intestine waits patiently until marketing will be handled directly by me. It will evoke “At you eat heartily your prawn curry-rice and chicken last! The full details of a diet to out-diet all other diets.” burger. Your small intestine sings in delight, “One prawn Given in clearly set out, readable form, with charts and curry-rice coming up!” Sorry, “coming down.” Then, I tell pictures, this would be a book you will not want to put my readers about the nutrients of the curry and some down, or once having read it, you will not want to share it mumbo-jumbo about vitamins, ending with ‘fat-soluble with your friends. vitamins A, D, E and K.” I will be rich and famous because diet-books outsell Chapter 26: You don’t have to starve on this diet. Eat cookery books by ten to one, or so, I would like to think. as much as you want of yeast-flakes dipped in hot tea. But, the question is how do I get my idea of ‘gargle’ Munch away to your heart’s content of sesame seeds with Listerine instead of eating fish and chips  into one — in fact, its concentrated calcium will help relax your whole book? Come to think of it, how does any diet nervous system. And, yes. Have any amount of hot tea — book spin out a couple of common sense ideas into the but, without milk, sugar or tea leaves. required 250 pages, without which the publisher may be At the end of each chapter, there will be a sketch of the embarrassed to charge `500 for the book? Listerine bottle to boost your willpower. You remember the lady who became rich and famous Epilogue: If you feel hungry, exercise. Before, or after after her ‘Papaya Diet’ was published in book-form? food?  ‘Instead of’ is the answer. Listen to your doctor and All that I could gather after reading the first 200 pages don’t be like the Scotsman who starved his wife, before was that papaya contains some enzyme which makes making love, because the doctor was specific: “Exercise you svelte and athletic and altogether wonderful. She on an empty stomach.” appeared on TV shows and was interviewed extensively. Ruby Lilaowala , a former special correspondent for Gulf Times, is a writer, columnist, life-coach and counsellor. She lives in Mumbai.

HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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HEALTH HAPPENINGS

GENE THAT DRIVES THE AGGRESSIVE FORM OF BREAST CANCER IDENTIFIED New research has identified a gene that drives one of the most aggressive forms of breast cancer. This gives fresh hope that by finding a way to block the gene may be able to make the cancer less aggressive. The research authors believe the most aggressive form of triple-negative breast cancer originates from stem cells. In their study, published in Nature Communications, the researchers found that the gene known as ‘inhibitor of differentiation 4’ [ID4] not only indicates a highly aggressive form of triple-negative breast cancer but also appears to control it. “We found that ID4 is produced at high levels in roughly half of all triple-negative breast cancers, and that these cancers have a particularly poor prognosis,” says project leader Dr Alex Swarbrick. “We also showed that if you block the ID4 gene in experimental models of triple negative breast cancer, the tumour cells stop dividing.” Triple negative breast cancers are breast cancers that lack oestrogen, progesterone and other receptors. Breast cancers that have these receptors can be targeted for treatment. Around 15 per cent of all breast cancer cases are triplenegative breast cancers. Patients that develop them typically have a higher risk of recurrence and shorter survival than patients with other forms of breast cancer. There also appears to be a division among patients with triple-negative breast cancer; some patients succumb to the disease within 3-5 years, while others can survive disease-free for much longer than many non-triplenegative breast cancer patients.

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The researchers discovered a likely explanation for this differentiation in survival prospects: there are two distinct forms of triple-negative breast cancer, appearing to originate from different cell types. While the more benign form of triple-negative breast cancer appears to originate from specialised cells, the team found that the aggressive form of the disease seems to originate from stem cells. Stem cells have the capacity to develop into a variety of different cell types in the body, and in many bodily tissues they divide to replenish other cells, providing the body with a form of internal repair. The manner in which stem cells are flexible and can spread into other tissues is similar to the way that many cancers operate. Previous research has shown that breast stem cells are a vital part of breast growth and development during both puberty and pregnancy. The new study has now demonstrated that ID4 is responsible for determining whether these stem cells develop into specialist cells or not. When ID4 is blocked in a stem cell, other genes that drive cell specialisation are activated. In addition, the oestrogen receptor and a number of other genes expressed by forms of breast cancer with better prognoses are also activated. “Oestrogen receptor-positive breast cancers have a relatively good prognosis because the cancer-drugs are effective at blocking the oestrogen receptor and hence their growth,” explains Dr Swarbrick. “We speculate, therefore, that by blocking ID4 it might be possible to turn stem-cell-like breast cancers into less aggressive breast cancers that may even respond to treatment.” If


Dr Swarbrick and his team are correct, that would be remarkable. FIRST VISION-RESTORING ‘BIONIC EYE’ IMPLANT PERFORMED Groundbreaking bionic retinal implant surgery has been performed in Honolulu, US, by a team at the Eye Surgery Center of Hawaii. The procedure is the first of its kind in the Asia-Pacific region to help restore vision for the blind. The team of doctors, led by Dr Gregg T Kokame, completed the cutting-edge procedure in March this year. Dr Mark Humayu, Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Southern California [USC] Eye Institute, Los Angeles, CA, and the co-inventor of the Argus II implant, was also present for this historic event. This recent surgery comes two years after the world’s first bionic eye implant of an early prototype by Bionic Vision Australia researchers in Melbourne at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital. The Eye Surgery Center of Hawaii is an ophthalmology speciality surgery centre and a portfolio company of SKAI Ventures that is focused exclusively on the surgical treatment of the eye in Hawaii and the Asia-Pacific region. There are presently eighteen eye surgeons who perform ophthalmologic surgeries at the centre. Dr Kokame, founder and president of Retina Consultants of Hawaii, and the president of the Eye Surgery Center of Hawaii says, “This is historical for many reasons. This ‘bionic eye’ implant has the potential to restore vision to patients, who have been in total or neartotal darkness. This can dramatically change the quality of life [QoL] of these patients.” “I have been involved in the care of hereditary blindness since the beginning of my career. I have watched patients progressively lose vision, but this new futuristic technology is now available to allow potential vision recovery to patients who are functionally blind.” “We are excited to bring this life-changing technology to Hawaii residents and to the Asia-Pacific region,” comments Dr Hank Wuh, CEO of SKAI Ventures. “As the leading centre of excellence for vision surgery, we hope to help people with retinal blindness throughout the region.” The ‘bionic eye,’ known officially as the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System [Argus II], is the world’s first approved device intended to restore some functional vision for people suffering from blindness. The Argus II, developed at USC, has shown dramatic clinical results to help patients with retinal blindness be able to utilise artificial vision to see. ROSEROOT IS EFFECTIVE FOR DEPRESSION An herb used in traditional European folk medicine for over 3,000 years could be a potential treatment option for depression, according to the results of a new study. Many common therapies for mild to moderate depression can have side-effects such as nausea and sexual dysfunction. The study, published in Phytomedicine, was led by Dr Jun J Mao, an associate professor of family medicine,

community health and epidemiology at the Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania, US. Rhodiola Rosea, also referred to as roseroot, has been used in traditional folk medicine to promote work endurance, increase longevity and promote resistance to several health conditions including fatigue, altitude sickness and depression. Previous studies have suggested that roseroot could enhance mood by stimulating the receptors of neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and serotonin in the brain that are involved with mood regulation. Other research also suggests the herb affects beta-endorphin levels in the body. In what is the first-ever randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, comparison trial of roseroot extract, the researchers compared its effects on mild to moderate major depressive disorder with sertraline, a commonly prescribed antidepressant drug. A total of 57 adults were enrolled to participate in the study. Each participant exhibited two or more major depressive episodes, depressed mood or loss of interest in activities for at least two weeks, and depressive symptoms such as significant unintentional weight change, fatigue and recurrent thoughts of death. For 12 weeks, each participant received either standardised roseroot extract, sertraline, or a placebo [dummy pill]. The researchers measured changes in the participants’ depression during this period. The researchers found that although the participants receiving sertraline were more likely to report improvements in their symptoms by week 12 of their treatment than participants receiving roseroot extract, the differences were not statistically significant. In comparison with participants receiving a placebo, patients taking roseroot had 1.4 times the odds of improvement, whereas patients taking sertraline had 1.9 times the odds. However, far more patients receiving sertraline [63 per cent] reported side-effects than those receiving roseroot [30 per cent]. This finding suggests that roseroot may have a more favourable risk to benefit ratio than sertraline for treating mild to moderate depression. [Culled & Collated from the ‘Net and media reports] HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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FITNESS QUOTIENT

EXERCISE FOR FUN & WELLNESS Fitness is not just training for a sports event. It can be the humblest, or the simplest of physical activities — for fun and good health.

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ust the thought of exercise brings our mind’s eye to a cross-country runner gasping for breath, or a champion weightlifter lifting weights. For some of us, it is also not uncommon to relate exercise to cricketers training before a game, or while playing in the middle. Physical activity need not also be related to gyms, or fitness centres. It need not be athletics or running too. It can just be walking, cycling, swimming, or dashing your way to the local grocery mart, cleaning your home, not using your car to go to the nearest ATM, gardening, playing football with your kids, dancing, and so on. As a matter of fact, most of our everyday action is related to some form of physical activity. This is not all. You may also add water-aerobics, static bicycles, rowing machines, and exercise classes, to your exercise register — with better effect. Yes — you’d have experienced the embarrassment physical activity could bring at a local sports centre — or, what makes fat people extremely awkward or mortified, or even worried, at not being able to handle their workout like people who are in better shape. Simple physical activity, like swimming or housework, would dispel their embarrassment. You may also think of another straight-forward, and useful, fitness gadget for them, or anyone else — something that is fun to do and work with. Besides, it will help you attain good health, burn calories, and stay in shape.

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This uncomplicated gadget can completely change the way you look at physical activity. Bring home a minitrampoline. Yes, this is its name. It is a great fun exercise programme for optimal health and fitness. You not only get fit with it, but you also tend to lose weight without even getting to know about it. You can use it to walk, jog, bounce, and jump — it is a great way to keeping oneself in great shape and good cardiac fitness. What’s more, a mini-trampoline, or rebounder, is much less expensive than several other gadgets. Called rebounding exercise, a mini-trampoline protects and strengthens the heart, and stimulates the endocrinal system. It keeps down excess body weight, improves digestion, relaxes the mind, and promotes good sleep. It also reduces your affinity for frequent cold and sinus infections, and provides many other health benefits, including a ‘lymphatic detox.’ The best part — you can use your mini-trampoline with ease while listening to music, or watching movies, or TV, without missing your favourite programme. Aside from a mini-trampoline, you’d incorporate the following easy-to-use tricks to get some physical activity into your idle life. • Go and fetch the newspaper from your vendor on foot • Walk a mile as and when you can • Avoid going to the grocer who is just a stone’s throw away from your home. Instead, walk to a store which is 600-800 yards away. When you do this, you immediately add 600 steps, or more, into your everyday walking plan.


A H&Y ADVERTISING INITIATIVE

POT-POURRI

BALINESE MASSAGE FOR WELLNESS The Balinese massage is a deep tissue, oil-based massage. It unblocks the different energy pathways in the body to bring about a balanced physical and emotional state of being.

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t has its roots in Bali, Indonesia. Yes, the Balinese massage therapy is a popular Oriental body massage, its goodness handed down for generations. This natural therapy includes a combination of massage techniques to re-energise the body from within and improve blood and oxygen circulation, which is essential for energy to flow freely. The Balinese massage is a deep tissue, oilbased massage. It unblocks the different energy pathways in the body to bring about a balanced physical and emotional state of being. As the body loosens up with every massage stroke on the pressure points, a feeling of wellness engulfs you. This massage therapy works on the following principles, viz., — • Acupressure and reflexology, the body loosens up under the massage strokes as the trained therapist works on pressure points and relaxes the mind • Therapeutic essence, aromatic oils are an integral part of this body massage. Essential oils with more than a hint of ginger, frangipani, lemongrass or jasmine work effectively on calming the senses, while healing, soothing, boosting your mood and energising the body • The Balinese massage promotes complete body and mental health and its health benefits are many • This body massage works wondrously well on sleeping disorders by calming the senses and the mind and welcoming an overall feeling of calm and peace. It also acts as a mental relaxation for those suffering from migraine

• If you have been too stressed out, the Balinese massage therapy on the pressure points help relieve stress and tension in the body by loosening knotted and stiff muscles. Well, if you have achy muscles and joint pains, a Balinese body massage can help do away with muscle tension too • The nerve stimulation and reflexology strokes of the soothing massage can relay, or splash, immediate signals to the brain to ensure a feel-good state. Balinese massage works effectively to reduce and often eliminates anxiety and depression and rebalances the body • A Balinese massage session improves blood and oxygen circulation in the body and this influences body awareness • The body massage improves the overall functioning of the immune system and also increases lymphatic drainage [detox]. A Balinese massage always starts with the limbs first, it gradually moves to the body and returns to the back. It also starts with soft movements of the hand and eventually becomes firm, while touching the deepest tissues. The massage is best performed by professionally trained therapists who are adept at using such techniques as stretching, compression, friction, toning and trigger-point response for effective and relaxing sessions. You can benefit from a Balinese body massage at a beauty spa, if you are suffering from lethargy, listlessness, depression, poor circulation and low energy. After a session, you will sure feel relaxed and revitalised. You also smell of fragrance of essential oils used during the body massage at your favourite beauty spa. For further details, visit: http://www.o2spa.org/ HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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SUPER FOODS

GOODNESS OF ZUCCHINI Zucchini, a popular summer ‘crush,’ belongs to the cucumber and melon family. It resembles a cucumber in appearance, although certain varieties are round in shape. It is must for a good health. By GITANJALI PHATAK

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ucchini is known as tōrī in Hindi, cīmai curaikkāy, in Tamil, and nethi beerakaya, in Telugu. Zucchini [Cucurbita Pepo] is its Italian name; it is much loved for its health benefits galore.

TYPES OF ZUCCHINI Almost all the members of the squash family comprise of vegetables that have smooth, tender skin and flesh with small, edible seeds and high moisture content. There are several varieties of zucchini. Some popular varieties are: Costata Romanesco. Also known as cocozelle, this is basically a long and narrow variety with a slight bulge at the bottom-end. It has a mottled green skin with pale, raised ribs. When solid and immature, it has a sweet and juicy taste. Golden Zucchini. This variety is typified by brilliant golden yellow to orange skin; it retains its colour even after being cooked. Round varieties. These are dense, heavy and almost seedless with a smooth surface. Tatume. Commonly found in Mexico, their features are similar to the round variety, except that they have a large oval shape. Tori. This has stocky, pale green, tapering ends with a thick dark green stem. It is characterised by smooth, shiny skin and solid, crispy and flavourful flesh. Yellow crooknecks. They are characterised by a thick warty skin with markedly curved necks. They have a crunchy texture and a sweet delicate flavour. NUTRITIONAL INDEX Zucchini is a nutritious treat — its optimal daily consumption is equivalent to nine half-cup servings of fruits and vegetables consumed each day. It comprises of nutrients, such as vitamins A, B, C, E and K and dietary fibre as well as minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, manganese and folate. Its nutritional value is further enhanced by beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant.

HEALTH BENEFITS Anti-aging. Zucchini is a good source of vitamins A and C which are powerful antioxidants. Vitamin A helps in maintaining a healthy skin, whereas vitamin C fights hazardous toxins. Cancer. The high levels of fibre in zucchini prevent carcinogenic toxins from settling in the colon. They promote healthy and regular bowel movements. Vitamins A and C are strong antioxidising agents that destroy carcinogens which may lead to colon and other types of cancer. Cardiovascular health. The dietary fibre in zucchini helps in lowering our cholesterol levels. Zucchini has a high magnesium content, with one cup providing over 10 per cent of the RDA. This mineral reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke. Hair. Zucchini is rich in vitamin A and C; it is beneficial for your hair. Vitamin C is vital for maintaining healthy collagen in the connective tissue and around the hair follicles. Vitamin A, on the other hand, protects the hair from free radicals. Deficiency of this vitamin can cause hair dryness, which we all hate. Puffy eyes. When applied externally, zucchini helps to remove puffy bags around the eyes. This happens due to excessive water retention and high water content in zucchini. Skin. Zucchini hydrates the skin and flushes out toxins from the system. Weight management. Zucchini is effective for weight management, thanks to its healthy combination of high fibre, moisture content and low calorie content. ‘HOW-TO’ ZUCCINI Use zuccini in cupcakes and bread and loaf cakes. Incorporate one cup of grated raw zucchini into the batter for a nutritious bite. • Stir fry, sauté or make zucchini chips • Use them raw in salads • Use as sabzi [vegetable].

Gitanjali Phatak is a Mumbai-based writer with a keen interest in healthy living and healthy eating.

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READ. WATCH. LISTEN. EXPLORE POSTURE PERFECT Posture is not just about sitting straight, it is also intelligent awareness of your body’s framework and balance — one that could be effectively used to banish the aches and pains, which are the song of one’s burden, primarily because of aging and modern lifestyles. The Power of Posture is your one-stop guide to successfully resolving your body’s issues and replenishing your health and vitality. It answers weight loss issues, ways to boost flexibility and metabolism, corrections for muscle imbalance from over-exercising, solutions to aching neck, shoulders and back, including the

key to pain-free legs and knee joints, among other health issues. The Power of Posture Dr Renu Mahtani Jaico pp 236 Price: `299.00

ANYTIME SPIRITUALITY This is modern spirituality in the digital age — harnessing technology for the evolution of the consciousness. It transforms any environment into a sacred space and delivers the eternal now experience. This is New-Age meditation, a whole new modern way with headphones that delivers an experience personally precise and relevant for the times we now live in. The best part — it can also be used without headphones on a player in your pocket.

Now The Technology [Audio CD] Master Charles Cannon Yogi Impressions Price: `186.00

VALLEY RESORT Welcome to the enchanting world of Snow Valley Resorts, Dalhousie, where you can enjoy true luxury in the lap of nature. The resort has 55 rooms — all elegant and contemporary in design with spectacular views of snow-capped mountains. With the best modern amenities in all the rooms, the resort ensures a completely pleasurable stay — it also a bird’s eye view to savouring the pristine beauty of sylvan Dalhousie. Call: +91-93185 13788/93185 41917; E: reservations@ snowvalleyresort.co.in.

A RESTAURANT LIKE NO OTHER Mavalli Tiffin Rooms [MTR] is a legendary name in South Indian food. This super-popular eatery, according to Lonely Planet, has had Bengaluru eating out of its hands since 1924. “Thick, crusty dosas, tangy bisibele bhath [and, delectable rava idlis] and freshly ground ‘filter’ coffee,” plus a lot more, as The National puts it, are nearly impossible to find at one place,” except MTR. Or, as the local Deccan Herald waxes eloquent, “A warm smell hovers in the air — it’s filled with spices that taint the boiling vegetables and grains as they stew to perfection. It is these flavours that make Mavalli Tiffin Rooms the quintessential South

Indian diner and an old Bengaluru relic. Call: 080-2223 0471.

HOMEOPATHY & YOU | MAY 2015

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CELEB FITNESS

SHILPA SHETTY’S WELLNESS MANTRA

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hilpa Shetty–Kundra, the svelte and charming actress, model and fitness diva, made her movie debut in Baazigar [1993]. She has, thereafter, appeared in over 50 Bollywood, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada films. She got her first leading role in Aag [1994]. Her performances in Dhadkan [2000] and Rishtey [2002] received loads of éclat from critics, just as much as her poignant portrayal of an AIDS patient in Phir Milenge [2004] won her several accolades. Her wellness mantra, by courtesy of http://celebfitness.blogspot.in: HER USP Her flat, fit abs. She is a tall woman and she has a shapely body. Yes, her washboard abs are a result of constant care and exercise. HER FITNESS SECRET Shilpa does a combination of yoga and gymming. She is athletic and can stretch herself with good stamina. She is also well-known for her classy yoga DVD. She practices yoga every day to maintain her super-slim figure HER FITNESS TIPS If you don’t feel comfortable working out at a gym, change venue or you’ll never go. Or, do what I do and train at home. • Stretch before and after a workout to prevent muscle strain. • Cardiovascular exercise keeps you fit, trim and healthy; so, my workouts involve light runs on the treadmill.

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• Lift light dumb-bells to tone your arms without bulking up. I use heavier weights on my legs for definition. • Workout at least three times a week. I meditate regularly and practice yoga every day. I love doing squats. I’ve always felt my legs are too skinny, so I concentrate more on my lower body. HER DIET Contrary to popular belief, Shilpa does not diet. “I’ve never done anything silly like the cabbage soup diet. Instead, I just eat good, natural foods in sensible portions.” “I drink around ten glasses of hot water during the day to cleanse my system, keep my skin clear and feel full.” So, what’s her secret formula for keeping the weight off? “Never ‘snackeat’ between meals. It just increases your calorie intake. Remember, tea is always better than sugary, fizzy drinks. I don’t eat after 8:00pm. I also always eat at least three hours before I go to bed, so my body has the chance to work off the calories.” HER SECRET Shilpa’s biggest secret for keeping a good body? “I only drink warm water. It helps clear toxins from the body and increases the metabolic rate, which, in turn, helps in burning fat. I did not like drinking water, but once I started drinking warm water, I realised that I needed to drink more to quench my thirst. Today, I carry my bottle of warm water whenever I step out of the house. And, I do believe that this is one of the key factors in helping me maintain my weight as well as giving me a clear skin and healthy body.”


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Homeopathy & You May 2015 issue  

Highlights of the May 2015 Issue: Homeopathy & Cancer – Holistic Healing ‘Agaricus’ – Much ADO about nothing & everything - Your personalit...

Homeopathy & You May 2015 issue  

Highlights of the May 2015 Issue: Homeopathy & Cancer – Holistic Healing ‘Agaricus’ – Much ADO about nothing & everything - Your personalit...

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