Whether you need to soothe your toddler’s upset tummy or your own serious bout of indigestion, a sweet and zesty ginger chew can ease the symptoms. The key to making ginger chews is freshly grated ginger, more potent in enzymes than pre-packaged ground ginger. Look for a rhizome that is firm, smooth and free of mold. If the outer skin is tough, instead of tender, be sure to peel that off and discard, then shred the ginger for this recipe.
- 1/4 cup shredded fresh ginger root – packed
- 3/4 cup organic cane sugar (brown sugar works too)
- 1/4 cup pure honey (raw honey optional but not necessary here)
- Coconut oil
- Candy thermometer
- Parchment Paper
Grate ginger root, pack it down into a 1/4 measuring cup, and add to water in a saucepan and simmer until half the liquid has evaporated (about 30 minutes). Strain and discard ginger. Reserve 1 cup of ginger decoction. Grease a small glass dish (approx. 7×4 inch) with coconut oil. Cut some parchment paper to fit the bottom of the pan and cover it with coconut oil too. Pour ginger decoction into a large clean saucepan. Add sugar and honey over high heat until it reaches 260 degrees or passes a water drop test, which is the preferred method.
Water drop test: Get a cup of VERY cold water and drop a small amount of syrup in. Use a spoon to retrieve your candy. You’ll be able to feel if it’s too soft or just right. Remember… you want it chewy… not runny or hard.
When temperature is reached or syrup has passed a water test, pour candy into pan and let sit for 30 minutes. Turn dish over and remove parchment paper from the bottom of the candy. After coating a sharp knife in coconut oil, or running it under HOT water, cut the candy into small strips (1/2 x 1 inch). Wrap in extra parchment paper for storage. If the candy gets stuck in the pan, use a spoon and scoop out bits of sticky candy to mold and wrap. This will take a little extra work, but the chews will be exactly the same.
Adapted from Vintage Remedies recipe.
L-GLUTAMINE FOR GUT STRENGTH
L-Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid (protein building block) in the body; as such, it has a wide range of functions. Critical for removing excess ammonia (a common waste product in the body), glutamine supports the immune system, muscle and organ growth and repair, as well as brain and digestive functions. It’s also been shown to protect against the breakdown of the mucous lining in the gut. Most glutamine is stored in muscles, followed by the lungs, where much of this protein is made.
On a typical day, our body makes enough glutamine to meet ordinary needs. However, when we’re under stress (emotional or physical – from heavy exercise to mental illness, injury or surgery), we may not produce enough glutamine to address the stress hormones flooding our body. That’s when taking a supplement comes into play. Additionally, a glutamine supplement is often helpful for individuals with medical conditions such as GERD, leaky gut, or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), where their glutamine levels may be consistently low.
L-Glutamine supplements are usually in pill form, but you can also find a powder version which should be mixed with a cool liquid. It’s critical to remember: Always use cool, never hot foods or liquids. Heat destroys glutamine. Unless otherwise recommended and supervised by your health practitioner, a glutamine supplement is not recommended for children under age 10 or for people with kidney or liver disease, or a history of seizures. Proper dose is crucial to how well L-glutamine works. Always consult with your holistic practitioner before adding a supplement such as glutamine to your diet.
- University of Maryland CAM Database. “Glutamine.” Accessed on October 4, 2016.
- Rapin, Jean Robert, and Nicolas Wiernsperger. “Possible Links between Intestinal Permeability and Food Processing: A Potential Therapeutic Niche for Glutamine.” Clinics 65.6 (2010): 635-643. PMC. Web. 4 Oct. 2016.
- Larson, Shawn D. et al. “Molecular Mechanisms Contributing to Glutamine-Mediated Intestinal Cell Survival.” American Journal of Physiology.
- Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology 293.6 (2007): G1262-G1271. PMC. Web. 4 Oct. 2016.
- Weitzel L, Wischmeyer P. “Glutamine in Critical Illness: The Time Has Come, The Time Is Now.” Critical Care Clinics. 2010;26(3).
SEEDS FOR GOOD DIGESTION: CUMIN (Cuminum cyminum)
Cumin is a seed-derived spice with a nutty-peppery flavor that packs a punch from the moment its aroma seeps into your senses. Immediately, Cumin activates the salivary glands which kicks-off the digestive process. Known as jeera in Ayurvedic medicine, cumin is native to the eastern Mediterranean area and is used in cuisine from many parts of the world, including Tex-Mex, Eastern, and Indian. The seeds have been used in folk medicine since antiquity to promote digestion and treat flatulence, diarrhea, indigestion, bloating and gas.
Medicinally, cumin is recognized as a carminative, which means that it soothes digestive irritation, such as gas, and thereby improves digestion. Due to its essential oils, magnesium and sodium content, cumin can also provide relief for stomach ache and irritable bowels. Current research shows that cumin’s beneficial effects may be due to the spice’s ability to stimulate secretion of pancreatic enzymes, which are necessary for proper digestion and assimilation of nutrients from food. Adding to its nutritional potency, cumin also contains flavonoids and antioxidants, which are beneficial to overall health.
It’s best to cook with whole cumin seeds that you grind with a mortar and pestle. Packaged cumin powder is more convenient but it loses its flavor faster than whole seeds. Whole seeds will keep for a year, when stored in a cool, dark place, while powder should be used within six months. For enhanced flavor, roast cumin seeds before using them.
- “Curcumin v. Cumin: Not the Same.” Accessed on October 4, 2016.
- WorldsHealthiestFoods.com: Cumin. Accessed on October 4, 2016.
- Agah, Shahram et al. “Cumin Extract for Symptom Control in Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Case Series.” Middle East Journal of Digestive Diseases 5.4 (2013): 217-222.
THE POWER OF CHIROPRACTIC MEDICINE
Doctors of Chiropractic (DC) have long been known as the doctor you choose when you hurt your back. Today, chiropractors can do much more than just treat pain after an injury. With specialized training, chiropractors are able to address diet and lifestyle changes, teach mind-body practices, and offer a more holistic approach to helping patients manage a variety of health conditions, including digestive disorders.
Chiropractors view health from the philosophy that misalignments in the spine (called subluxation) create interference in how the brain and nervous system communicate with the rest of the body – muscles, glands, and organs – resulting in symptoms of illness. Therefore, your DC focuses on identifying (through x-ray or other images) and correcting these misalignments.
The theory behind how chiropractic works for digestive disorders is that subluxation interrupts communication between nerves and the gut. Restoring communication promotes healthy mobility of the muscles in the digestive tract. It also promotes proper secretion of digestive juices and regulation of hormones important to gut health.
Chiropractors restore normal function by using hands-on therapies called adjustments to correct the subluxation in the spine and other joints that may be affected. They may also use massage and corrective exercises, depending on the condition. This approach honors the body’s innate ability to heal and aims to reduce/eliminate symptoms, restore healthy function, and enhance quality of life.
Chiropractic may be an important adjunctive treatment in managing digestive health concerns for some people. A review of research published between 1980 and 2012 indicated mild to moderate improvements in report of patient symptoms for a variety of digestive conditions, including irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, GERD, and colitis. Other studies did not find significant improvement in patient symptoms. There is a need for more well-designed clinical studies in order to make definitive statements about chiropractic treatment for digestive disorders. As with other treatments where research is still emerging, individual patient considerations play an important role in how someone responds to a treatment.
- National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Chiropractic In Depth.
- Chiropractic and Digestive Concerns
- NaturalNews.com “Chiropractic Helps Digestive Disorders.” Posted by Dr. David Jockers ( 09 July 2010). Accessed on 15 November 2016.
- Angus, K., Sepideh A., & Gleberzon, B. “What Effect Does Chiropractic Treatment Have on Gastrointestinal (GI) Disorders: A Narrative Review of the Literature.” The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association 59.2 (2015): 122-133. Accessed on October 6, 2016.
- Ernst, E. “Chiropractic Treatment for Gastrointestinal Problems: A Systematic Review of Clinical Trials.” Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology 25.1 (2011): 39-40. Accessed 15 November 2016.
First Do not Harm
Identify and Treat the cause
Healing Power of Nature
Doctor as Teachers
Treat the Whole
Prevention is best Medicine
The information offered by this newsletter is presented for educational purposes. Nothing contained within should be construed as nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. This information should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Always consult with your physician or other qualified health care provider before embarking on a new treatment, diet or fitness program. You should never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of any information contained within this newsletter.