Fitness

Secret for superpower Memory Part 1

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The Greeks so worshiped memory that they made a goddess out of her- Mnemosyne. It was her name from which was derived the current word mnemonics, used to describe memory techniques.

In Greek and Roman times, senators would learn these techniques in order to impress other politicians and the public with their phenomenal powers of learning and memory, with these simple but sophisticated methods, the Romans were able to remember without fault thousands of items, including statistics relating to their empire, and became the rulers of their time.

Before the discovery of the physiological breakdown of brain functions in the left and right hemispheres by scientist, the Greeks had intuitively realized that there are two underlying principles that ensure perfect memory: imagination and association.  

Brief History of Memory

The exact date when and where the first integrated ideas on memory arose can’t be precisely stated. However, the first sophisticated concepts can be attributed to the Greeks, some 600 BC.

These ‘sophisticated’ ideas were surprisingly naive, especially since some of the men proposing they are numbered among the greatest thinkers the world has ever known.

In sixth century BC, Parmenides thought of memory as being a mixture of light and dark or heat and cold. He believed that as long as any given mixture remained unstirred, the memory would be perfect. As soon as the mixture was altered, forgetting occurred.

Diogenes of Apollonia advanced a different theory, in the fifth century BC. He suggested that memory was a process that consisted of events producing an equal distribution of air in the body, just Like Parmenides, he thought that when this equilibrium was disturbed, forgetting would occur.

In the fourth century BC, the first person to introduce a really major idea in the field of memory was Plato. His theory is known as the Wax Tablet Hypothesis and is still accepted by some people today, although there is growing disagreement.

He said that the mind accepted impressions in the same way that wax becomes marked when a pointed object is applied to its surface.

Plato assumed that once the impression had been made, it remained until it wore away with time, leaving a smooth surface once again.

This smooth surface was, of course, what Plato considered to be equivalent to complete forgetting – the opposite aspect of the same process.

Shortly after Plato, Zeno the Stoic slightly modified Plato’s ideas, suggesting that sensations actually ‘wrote’ impressions on the wax tablet. Like the Greeks before him, when Zeno referred to the mind and its memory, he did not place it in any particular organ or section of the body.

To him as to the Greeks, ‘mind’ was a very unclear concept. The first man to introduce a more scientific terminology was Aristotle, in the late fourth century BC.

He maintained that the language previously used was not adequate to explain the physical aspects of memory.

In applying his new language Aristotle attributed to the heart most of the functions that we now attribute to the brain.

Part of the heart’s function, he realized, was concerned with the blood, and he felt that memory was based on the blood’s movements. He thought that forgetting was the result of a gradual slowing down of these movements.

Furthermore, Aristotle made another important contribution to the subject of memory when he introduced his laws of association of ideas. The concept of association of ideas and images is now known to be of major importance to memory.

Also, in the third century before Christ, Herophilus introduced ‘vital’ and ‘animal’ spirits to the discussion. He thought that the vital, or ‘higher order’, spirits produced the ‘lower order’ animal spirits, which are the memory, the brain and the nervous system.

He concluded that man’s superiority over animals was the large number of creases in his brain; these creases are now known as the convolutions of the cortex.

 He, however, offered no reason for his conclusion until more than 2000 years later, that the real importance of the cortex was discovered.

Greeks were the first to seek a physical as opposed to a spiritual basis for memory; they developed scientific concepts and a language structure that helped the development of these concepts; and they contributed the Wax Tablet Hypothesis, which suggested that memory and forgetting were opposite aspects of the same process.

The next major contributor to memory theory was done by Galen in the second century AD. He was able to locate and delineate various anatomical and physiological structures and made further investigations into the function and structure of the nervous system.

He also assumed that memory and mental processes were part of the lower order of animal spirits. He thought that these spirits were manufactured in the sides of the brain and that, consequently, memory was seated there.

Galen thought that air was sucked into the brain and mixed with the vital spirits. This mixture produced animal spirits that were pushed down through the nervous system, enabling humans to experience sensation.

His ideas on memory were rapidly accepted and condoned by the church making his ideas doctrine, and as a result little progress was made in the field for 1500 years.

However, in the nineteenth century, some important advances occurred by reasons of development of science in Germany. Many of the ideas initiated by the Greeks were overthrown.

Modern Theory of Memory

Georg Prochaska, a Czech physiologist, finally and irrevocably rejected the age-old idea of animal spirits and others because no scientific basis to support them.

He said ‘Spatial localization may be possible,’ he said, ‘but we just do not know enough at the moment to make it a useful idea.’ It was not for some fifty years that localizing the area of memory function became a useful pursuit.

Another major theory in the nineteenth century was presented by a French physiologist, who ‘locate’ the memory in every part of the brain.

 He said that the brain acted as a whole and could not be considered as the interaction of elementary parts.

superpower Memory

Nowadays, memory research had advance because of advances in technology and methodology, such that psychologists and other thinkers in this field agree that memory is located in the cerebrum, which is the large area of the brain covering the surface of the cortex,

but the exact ‘localization’ of memory areas in this part of the brain is proving a difficult task, as is the accurate understanding of the function of memory itself.

Modern theory and research are divided into three main areas:

  1. Work on establishing a biochemical basis for memory
  2. Theories suggesting that memory can no longer be considered as a single process but must be broken down into divisions and
  3. The clinical surgeon Wilder Penfield’s work on brain stimulation.

Ribonucleic acid (RNA) and Memory

The biochemical basis for memory was initiated in the late 1950s. This theory suggests that RNA (ribonucleic acid), a complex molecule, serves as a chemical mediator for memory, which is produced by the substance DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid), which is responsible for our genetic inheritance.

Many research on RNA lend support to the idea that RNA does indeed have a lot to do with the way in which we remember things.

Experiment showed that when RNA was taken from one rat and injected into another, the second rat ‘remembered’ things that he had never been taught but that the first rat had.

Why do I Forget Things?

On theories, theorists are saying that we should stop emphasizing ‘memory’ and concentrate more on the study of ‘forgetting’. Their position is that we do not so much remember as gradually forget.

Encompassing this idea is the duplex theory of remembering and forgetting. Stating that there are two different kinds of information retention: long-term and short term.

The short-term situation is one in which the idea is ‘in’ the brain but has not yet been properly coded and is therefore more readily forgotten.

In the long-term situation the idea has been completely coded, filed and stored, and it will probably remain there for years, if not for life.

Brain Stimulation

Doctor Wilder Penfield initiated direct brain stimulation by performing craniotomies which involves removal of a small section of the brain in order to reduce epileptic attacks,

and before operation, Penfield conducted a systematic electrical stimulation of the open brain, and the patient, who remained conscious, reported his experience after each stimulation.

To his amazement he observed that when he stimulated certain individual brain cells (the temporal lobe of the brain), his patients were suddenly recalling experiences from their past.

The patients emphasized that it was not simple memory, but that they actually were reliving the entire experience, including smells, noises, colors, movement, tastes. These experiences ranged from a few hours before the experimental session to as much as forty years earlier.

Penfield suggested that hidden within each brain cell or cluster of brain cells lies a perfect store of every event of our past and that if we could find the right stimulus we could replay the entire film.

The Power of Your Memory

Also, a Russian journalist referred to as Russian S (The Mind of a Mnemonist, by A. R. Luria)attended an editorial meeting, and it was noted to the consternation of others that he was not taking notes.

When pressed to explain why he wasn’t taking notes, the explanation that he gave for not taking notes himself was that he could remember what the editor was saying, so what was the point? Upon being challenged, ‘S’ reproduced the entire speech, word for word, sentence for sentence, and inflection for inflection.

After thirty years, he was to be tested and examined by Alexander Luria, Russia’s leading psychologist and expert on memory. Luria confirmed that ‘ S ‘ was in no way abnormal but that his memory was indeed perfect.

Luria also stated that at a very young age ‘S’ had ‘stumbled upon’ the basic mnemonic principles and that they had become part of his natural functioning. ‘S’ was not unique.

The history of education, medicine and psychology is dotted with similar cases of perfect memorizers. In every instance, their brains were found to be normal, and in every instance they had, as young children, ‘discovered’ the basic principles of their memory’s function.

Parts and functions of The Brain

Professor Roger Sperry received the Nobel Prize for discovering the physiological sections of the brain. Sperry discovered that each one of us has a brain that is divided into two physiological sections, each dealing with different mental functions. Showing that, in most of us, the left side of the brain deals with the following areas:

Parts and Functions of the Brain
  1. Logic
  2. Language
  3. Number
  4. sequencing and linearity
  5. analysis

While the right side of the brain deals with the following mental functions:

  1. Rhythm and music
  2. Imagination
  3. Daydreaming
  4. Color and Dimension

How can I remember anything?

Most of us are actively discouraged from using our imaginative abilities, and consequently learn very little about the nature of mental association,  which is pretty simply, if you want to remember anything, all you have to do is to associate (link) it with some known or fixed item , calling upon your imagination throughout.

The brain records every item to which it pays conscious attention and that this record is basically permanent, although it may be ‘forgotten’ in day-to-day living.

 Keys for superpower Memory

Mnemonic Techniques

‘Mnemonics’ or Memory Techniques is a system of ‘memory codes’ that enabled people to remember perfectly whatever it was they wished to remember.

these techniques have shown that if a person scores 9 out of 10 when using such a technique, that same person will score 900 out of 1000, 9000 out of 10,000,  and so on.

These techniques help us to delve into that phenomenal storage capacity we have and to pull out whatever it is that we need.

The Greeks belief that in order to remember well, you have to use every aspect of your mind, to do this well, you must include in your associated and linked mental landscape in the following ways:

Colour: Colours can improve your memory capacity by 50%. The more colour you use, the better your memory capacity.

Imagination power: Imagination is the powerhouse of your memory. The more vividly you can imagine, the more easily you will remember.

Rhythm: rhythm and variation of rhythm in your mental mind, can improve your memory.

Movement: Moving objects are easily remembered better than still ones. So, as often as possible, try to make your mental images move.

Sense organs: tasting, touching, smelling, seeing, hearing. The more you can involve all your senses in your memory image, the more you will remember it.

For example, if you have to remember that you have to buy bitter Kola, you stand a far better chance of not forgetting your task if you can actually imagine the taste of bitter kola as you touch it with your hands, bite into it with your mouth and taste it, see it as it is approaching your face, and hear yourself munching it.

Sex. Sex is one of our strongest drives, and if you apply this aspect of drive to your magnificent daydreaming ability, your memory will improve.

Sequencing and Ordering. Imagination alone is not enough for memory. Thus, in order to function well, your mind needs order and sequence. So as to categorize and structure things in such a way as to make them more easily accessible and easier retrieval of information.

Number. In orderto make ordering and sequencing easier, it is often advisable to use numbers.

Dimension. The right-brain has ability to picture mages in 3-D.

Key Image Word to remembering things

A ‘Key Memory Word’ is the constant hook on which the reader will hang other items he or she wishes to remember. This Key Memory Word is specifically designed to be an ‘Image Word’ that must produce a picture or image in the mind of the person using the memory system.

In using the mnemonic systems to remembering things, you will realize the importance of being sure that the pictures you build in your mind contain only the items you want to remember, and those items must be associated with or connected to Key Memory Images.

The connections between your basic Memory System. Images and the things you wish to remember should be as fundamental and uncomplicated as possible.

Fitness

SECRET KEYS TO LIVING HEALTHY(2)

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CALORIC REDUCTION

According to Thomas Edison, American Inventor, he said ‘I KEEP MY HEALTH by dieting. People gorge themselves with rich foods, use up their time, ruin their digestion, and poison themselves….If the doctors would prescribe dieting instead of drugs, the ailments of normal man would disappear.

People living in developed countries have too much to eat of which may lead to Obesity, being overweight and cause a litany of illnesses, from cancer to stroke.

In the early twentieth century, William Jones, a medical doctor reported that a fasting spider will live longer than one that eats a normal diet.

These research was supported by studies at Cornell University in the 1930s showing that rats on a limited diet lived twice as long as other rats.

After fifty years, UCLA researchers released similar results involving mice; over the last decade, an increasing number of living creatures, from yeast to fish to dogs, have had their laboratory lives extended base on calorie restriction, indicated that eating less has positive effects on overall health.

AGE-RELATED DISORDER PREVENTION

Recent studies at the University of Wisconsin have shown that Calorie restriction can result in a reduced incidence of age-related disorders, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes,

while another study at New York’s Mount Sinai School of Medicine also found that monkeys on restricted diets were less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease.

The National Institute on Aging has conducted three pilot studies of calorie restrictions on humans called CALERIE, or the Comprehensive Assessment of Long-Term Effects of Reducing Intake of Energy on 132 men and women around the country to find out the effect of calorie restriction.

So far, the result is inconclusive but promising.

A number of studies have indicated that a calorie-restricted diet in which participants eat up to 25 percent less than they would normally eat reduces overall cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, triglyceride levels, and blood pressure.

Calorie-restricted diet decreased the deterioration of nerves in the brain and increased the creation of nerves in animals with neurobiological diseases.

However, there’s a darker side to eating less: You must guard against undernourishment. On the whole, calorie-restricted diets involve eating 20 to 30 percent fewer calories while taking in the same amount of nutrients as before.

Meaning that you must be careful about your food choices, as several studies have shown that unsupervised calorie restriction can lead to many ills, such as: muscle loss, hormonal changes, fatigue, diarrhea, reduced bone density, gallstones, and, not surprisingly, irritability.

Tips, Calorie Restriction Society, founded in 1993

Avoid simple sugars and flours: generally, sugars and flours contain very little nutrition for their calorie content. Have high glycemic indices, which means that your body absorbs them quickly, leaving you wanting more a short time later.

Eat both green leafy salad and other, nonleaf vegetables. Vegetables contain the highest content of a wide variety of nutrients for their calorie content of any food group.

By volume and often by calories, vegetables are the major component of many calorie-restricted but not nutrient deficient diets.

Carefully select your protein and fat sources: protein and fat are required macro-nutrients, but their form can have a significant influence on a person’s risk factors for a wide variety of diseases.

Make sure your protein intake is sufficient but not overly abundant.

Recommendations for total protein intake range from 0.6 to 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight, and some recommendations are much higher. This is probably a minimum.

Select monounsaturated fats, avoid saturated fats, and consume some omega-3 fats.

Foods containing monounsaturated fats include:

  • olive oil,
  • almonds,
  •  hazel nuts, and avocados.

Most of your fat intake should be from these foods. A very small amount of fat should be in the form of omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in fatty fish, salmon, for example and flax oil.

#Caution: Fatty foods, even healthy choices, are high in calories, so be sure that you carefully track your intake so as to stay within your calorie goal.

GEORGE BURNS’S EAT-LESS MENU

In his book ‘How to Live to Be 100—Or More’ in 1983, Burns wrote down his supposed diet, what many people today might not consider serious.

Fatty foods, even healthy choices, are high in calories, so be sure that you carefully track your intake so as to stay within your calorie goal.

Breakfast

  • small glass orange juice

     Bowl bran cereal with milk

  • cups coffee, black

‘I let the cereal soak in the milk so it gets a little soggy. That way it doesn’t make a noise when I’m eating, because I’m too tired from taking bows the night before’.

Lunch

Bowl of canned salmon with white vinegar and lemon

1 English muffin, toasted

  1. cup coffee, black

‘English muffins usually come sliced in half horizontally. I like each half sliced the same way, so the muffin is in four slices. That way I eat two slices and wind up eating just half a muffin.’

Dinner

  • Bowl of soup
  • Mixed green salad
  • Broiled fish
  • Two vegetables
  • 1 slice bread, buttered
  • 1 cup coffee, black
  • Ice cream

‘If it’s white fish, then I have green vegetables. Green and white go together beautifully. But if the fish is red snapper, then I don’t have green vegetables. I have yellow squash, even though I hate yellow squash. I can’t stand a meal where the colors clash.’

FACTS ON DETOXIFICATION

Detoxification— is the metabolic process by which the harmful qualities of a poison or toxin are reduced by the body.

Detox allowed us to return to a state of natural purity in which the body can exercise its native intelligence and function as it has evolved to do: in harmony with nature.

Detox regimen involved eating lean, fresh, and often raw foods: “The fattier, more processed, and more adulterated our diet, the greater amount of it is retained in our bodies.

Our organs are stressed by their efforts to eliminate the toxic molecules. The less concentrated the diet, the more efficiently this elimination takes place—from the blood through the bowels, bladder, lungs, and skin—so the toxic aren’t retained in the cells.”

Detoxification can be done slowly by cutting out foods slowly: although you may still ate some meat, but no hot dogs, pork, fatty meats—only lean burgers on whole-wheat buns with lettuce and tomato and onion.

Changing from white rice to brown rice and from white to whole-wheat flour, drinking plenty of water early in the morning and consuming only natural juice without preservative and the likes.

Hydrotherapy

Colonic irrigation, known as colon hydrotherapy can also be carryout occasionally.

Colon irrigation is the practice of flushing the colon in our body with warm filtered water in order to loosen and remove accumulated waste that the body doesn’t need.

Colonic proponents believe that fecal matter sticks to the walls of the colon, hardens, impedes the organ’s function, and leads to the absorption of toxins into the bloodstream through the colon walls.

Think of it as the ultimate enema: Enemas typically cleanse only the lower colon with one infusion of water; colonics clean the entire organ using multiple infusions.

A typical colonic irrigation session starts with the colon therapist inserting a speculum into the anus of the patient. The speculum is attached to a plastic hose leading to a hydrotherapy machine containing warm water; sometimes mixed with herbs or other liquids.

After the water is pumped in, the colon responds by pushing the water and loosened feces out through the same tube in a reaction known as peristalsis.

This process usually lasts about an hour. Many people are willing to pay a great deal of money to have this done regularly.

Does Colonic Irrigation do any good?

This is an open debate, but many doctors don’t think so, and risks are involved, including the possibility that along with the bad you are flushing away the good—the friendly organisms that help your body thrive.

However, all kinds of substances are coursing through our body that have no right to be there—and which, in sufficient quantity, could lead to disease. Ridding the body of these aliens is the principle behind detoxification.

These toxic substances include synthetic chemicals, metals, organic detritus and unhealthy foods.

And while there are almost as many different ways to detoxify as there are toxics and toxins, all call for a limitation on consumption or a purgation of things already consumed.

Detoxification is not a uniquely human concept. Most animals do it too. You’ll often see a dog munching on some grass and vomiting shortly thereafter.

We aren’t very different from dogs in this respect. Our impulse to vomit after ingesting poison, rancid food, or excessive alcohol is a crude but crucial detox method.

In these situations, our internal detox system is overwhelmed, so we need to purge as much of the offending substance as we can, as quickly as possible.

THE LIVER, THE LARGEST INTERNAL ORGAN

The liver filters these bad substance out of the bloodstream at a rate of more than a quart of blood per minute
Healthy detoxification

Our body is actually in a constant state of detoxification. Our liver, the largest internal organ, has many functions, including processing our blood, transforming toxins such as alcohol, drugs, and environmental pollutants into water-soluble substances that can be removed in your urine or feces.

The liver filters these bad substance out of the bloodstream at a rate of more than a quart of blood per minute.

While circulatory and lymphatic systems transport toxic substances from every part of our body to the kidneys and liver, where they are either filtered and processed into waste or transformed and stored as a benign molecule in a fat cell.

Even without threat of poison in the body from the outer environmental, our liver would still need to detoxify the toxins produced by our own bodies. These substances include hormones, chemicals that control body functions.

After the threat has passed, these hormones are swept out of the cells and removed from our bloodstream by the kidneys and liver. Otherwise, you’d remain in a state of permanent stress and quickly succumb to hypertension.

Then, if our bodies naturally and automatically detoxify, why have so many special programs claiming to optimize and maximize, or stimulate detoxification cropped up in the last few years?

Has the world become more toxic?

Definitely, many chemicals used commonly today were completely absent from our environment just a century ago. These chemicals: PHTHALATES, POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYLS(PCBS), FORMALDEHYDE, CARBAMATE INSECTICIDES, TRIAZINE HERBICIDES, AND NITRATES, DIOXINS, HEAVY METALS.

All have been linked to health problems—and all are commonly found in the bodies of adults in developed countries.

Study by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City found an average of ninety-one different chemicals in the bodies of research subjects; nearly all were known to be either toxic to the brain, carcinogenic, or teratogenic (causing birth defects).

Few long-term studies have been completed on the benefits of detoxification—in fact, no one really knows yet how well detox programs work, so be wary of any that offer you a guarantee.

However, rates of diseases, including cancer and liver disease, that are linked to toxic exposures are increasing. If you decrease your body’s level of synthetic chemicals, chances are good that your health will improve.

Nevertheless, the best and most common way to detoxify is probably the least expensive: FASTING.

Countless number of fasting regimens exist; almost all of them require you to avoid meats, processed foods, anything altered chemically or created with additives, as well as caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine.

Before embarking in it, make sure to read up on a fast before starting, doing it healthy, appropriate and consulting your doctor.

Fitness

KEYS TO LIVING LONGER (Part one)

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Dieting Plan and Aging

A wealthy Venetian nobleman: Luigi Cornaro who was born into a prosperous family around 1460. wrote about this plan in his four-volume book, translated as Discourses on a Temperate Life, he articulated his philosophy that people should eat less as they grow older in life, elaborating on his belief that the body prefers rest to digestive action during periods of weakness.

Cornaro designed himself a dieting plan, cutting back drastically on the quantity of food he consumed daily. Each day, he limited himself to twelve ounces (about 0.3402kg) of solid food and fourteen ounces (about 0.397kg) of wine. “There is no doubt,” he wrote, “that if one so advised were to act accordingly, he would avoid all sickness in the future, because a well-regulated life removes the cause of disease.”

Luigi Cornaro not only lived a very long time, but also remained healthy until just before his death. According to him, “A long life full of disease and misery is worse than no life at all.”

For instance, the Blue-Zoners (people who lives in geographic areas with high concentrations of the world’s longest-lived people): The island of Okinawa, Japan, mountainous region of Barbagia, Sardinia, Italy, Icaria, Greece, etc tend to have diets high in nutrients and low in calories, avoid heavily processed food and they snacks by eating fresh fruits.

These people avoids unnecessary fats and sugars while packing even more vitamins into their diet and washing down their food almost exclusively with water. Avoiding sugary soft drinks associated with heart disease and light dinner early in the evening are common practices of these people.

Among the key secrets of Blue-Zoners that makes them live healthier, and longer is the solid base responsible for the moral and spiritual formation: but an immoral man is like a chaff which the wind drive away.

Furthermore, the community and environment give the Blue-Zoners a shared sense of purpose and keeps them busy and motivated far into their silver years, where scientist supports the concept that staying busy and having a sense of purpose helps people live longer according to 2009 study by Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago.

Brewer’s Yeast and Health

Brewer’s Yeast is a single-celled fungi that break sugars down into alcohol and release carbon dioxide, yeasts have been known to humankind for ages, even though not all types are useful and some can cause infections in people.  The species Saccharomyces cerevisiae, known as brewer’s yeast has helped people make bread and beverages since before the advent of recorded history.

In the year 1857, Pasteur published a paper titled “Notes on So-called Lactic Fermentation,” in which he identified yeast as a new type of organism and established fermentation as the biological process through which it converted sugar to alcohol.

Yeast is more valued for its ability to ferment food and drink than for its nutrients, people have long been marginally aware of its health benefits.

In the Middle Ages, infants were often fed the yeasty sediment from cloudy beers as a way to keep them healthy. The popular uses of brewer yeast were given scientific grounding in the 1950s, when nutritionist Adelle Davis put forth in writing: “Yeast contains almost no fat, starch, or sugar; its excellent protein sticks to your ribs, satisfies the appetite, increases your basal metabolism, and gives you pep to work off unwanted pounds.”

Studies also found that creams containing brewer’s yeast were highly effective in treating acne, with 80 percent of participants reporting significant improvement over a five-month period.

Health benefits of vitamins in Brewer’s Yeast

Yeast cells replicate by budding (asexual reproduction), a process in which a parent cell divides and produces a daughter cell. This process creates millions of offspring during the Yeast life cycle, requiring a great deal of energy and vitamins that aren’t contained in the simple sugars they feed on.

To solve this problem, the yeast cells manufacture their own B vitamins, proteins, and trace minerals which are beneficial to human health. Among these nutrients are the water-soluble B vitamins which is the most important, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, folic acid, and biotin.

One tablespoon of a good brand of brewer’s yeast meets the recommended daily allowance. These vitamins are benefits to the body helping to metabolize the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins essential for growth;

they are also essential for the maintenance of healthy hair, skin, nerves, blood cells, hormone-producing glands, and the immune system; deficiency in any one of those can result in diseases like beriberi, pellagra, and anemia.

Another health benefit of B vitamins is that they keep homocysteine levels low.

Homocysteine is an amino acid present in human blood that is strongly influenced by people’s diets. The studies of Epidemiological linked high levels of homocysteine to stroke, coronary heart disease, and peripheral vascular disease.

Note that there are three different types of Saccharomyces cerevisiae that fall under the category of brewer’s yeast:

  1. Active yeast which is used to make beer or wine. It contains the same nutrients as other yeast cultures, this form is living and shouldn’t be consumed as a supplement.
  2. The second type is a by-product of beer brewing and wine making that has been deactivated, or killed through heating; this is the type most often sold as a supplement under the name brewer’s yeast. It is bitter and nutty tasting.
  3. The third type of supplemental yeast is termed nutritional yeast and has been developed for those who dislike the taste of brewer’s yeast. It is the same species, but instead of being harvested from alcohol production it is grown on a molasses-based medium or on sugar beets, a process that mitigates the bitter taste imparted to yeasts cultivated in beer.
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BRIEF HISTORY, USES AND HEALTH BENEFITS OF BITTER KOLA

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Bitter Kola Nut

Garcinia kola, known as bitter kola, is a multipurpose tree indigenous to West and Central Africa. Garcinia Kola plant is called “wonder plant” because all of its parts can be used as medicine.

Bitter Kola plant is a medium-sized tree with an average height of 25-30 meters and 1.5 meters wide as found by Iwu, 1993.

The tree produces characteristics orange like pod, with edible portion in the pod.

It is believed to contain a high source of vitamins and minerals like Vitamins A, C, E, B1, B2, B3, fiber, calcium, potassium, and iron, with other antioxidants.

Garcinia kola is a species of flowering plant in the clusiaceae or Guttiferae family. It is found in tropical moist lowland forest of Nigeria, Benin, Cameroon, Republic of Congo, Ghana, Gabon, Senegal, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

THE SEED AND HEALTH BENEFITS

The seeds are chewed by both rural and urban populations to suppress headaches, laryngitis, bronchitis, malaria, and gonorrhea according to Adebgoye et al., 2008 and sometimes for their typical astringent taste.

(Please consult your family physician before initiating bitter Kola treatment regimen).

The seed extract is used as a cure for various types of inflammation or liver cirrhosis, while dried ground kernels can be mixed with honey to prepare a traditional paste against cough (Adebisi, 2004).

The seeds can successfully substitute hops in brewing industry. The Bark of Garcinia kola is traditionally used in similar way to the seeds, mainly to cure abdominal pains and malaria , Ijomone et al., 2012.

Aside from its medicinal value, the bark serves in palm wine production. It is believed that the bark enhances flavor as well as alcohol content of the traditional beverage.

 In Ghana and other Africa countries, the branches and roots of Garcinia kola are sold in bundles as an essential source of chewing sticks used for dental hygiene (Blay, 2004).  

Leaves of bitter kola are occasionally prepared as an infusion to cure fever.

CHEMICAL CONTENT AND HEALTH BENEFITS

According to Stevens 2018, the kernel contains a wide range of useful phytochemicals, such as tannins and flavonoids.  

Among these compounds, the biflavonoid kolaviron complex holds neuro-protective, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and many other assets favorable to human health (Usunomena, 2012).

The most abundant phytochemicals in Garcinia kola seeds are flavonoids, Saponins, Tannins, Phenols, Glycosides, and Alkaloids,.

Even though anti-nutrients such as oxalate and phytate were found in Garcinia Kola, the seeds are safe for consumption and there are no reports on harmful overdosing so far.

The compounds, Flavonoids are low molecular weight compounds known as natural antioxidants, having an ability to scavenge free radicals and transform them into harmless molecules as well as to impact various aspects of immune cell activation for the human body.

The compounds play a useful role in protecting the central nervous system against oxidative, excitotoxic stresses and work as anti-tumor agents

According to Nwaehujor et al., 2015, kolaviron possess anti-malarial and wound healing properties.

Therapeutic potential of kolaviron was shown in treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (Kalu, 2016).

Kolaviron possesses antinociceptive (sedative) and anti-inflammatory activities, both centrally and peripherally, which justifies its folkloric use to relieve pain and inflammation according to Ibironke and Fasanmade 2015.

the seed extract were also able to stop growth of Ebola virus in laboratory trials (Iwu, 1993).

The antimicrobial properties of Garcinia kola are attributed to benzophenones and flavanones.

Bitter kola isn’t just useful for treating cough, malaria, inflammation, abdominal pains and others; it can also be effective for individuals suffering from type two (2) diabetes as a means of keeping their blood glucose levels stable.

Studies found that the seeds are capable of reducing elevated blood glucose levels, making it model for both treatment of type 2 diabetes as well as any complications that can arise from the condition. Do you need supply of Bitter Kola?

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GARLIC: IT’S HISTORY, USES AND HEALTH BENEFITS (PART TWO)

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Type of Garlic

The name garlic was derived from the Old English word garleac. Literally, interpreted, the latter means “spear leek,” making reference to the lanceolate shape of the plant’s cloves. However, there are two main types of garlic: hardneck and softneck.

Garlic, Ready for Export

The hardneck varieties produce a flowering stalk which is surrounded by underground cloves and are considered to be more flavorful and easier to peel than softneck, making them the best choice of most chefs. However, the hardneck garlic does not store well.

The Softneck varieties also called silverskin, generally do not flower and form seed, but often produce bulblets on their stem.

They are considered to be more productive and easier to grow than hardneck varieties. Under proper conditions softneck varieties can be stored from six to eight months. Most of the garlic found at supermarkets is of the softneck type.

The Soil, Weather and ph level for Garlic

Garlic grows best in a sunny location in soil that is well-drained yet moisture-retentive and relatively high in organic matter. Well-rotted manure or compost is an ideal soil amendment to improve the latter in garden soils.

Garlic prefers a soil pH of between 6 and 7. Liming is recommended if the pH falls below 5.8.

Garlic: Minerals and Vitamins

A single clove of garlic can gives 4 calories, but the minerals are Potassium, Iron, Calcium, Phosphorous, Magnesium, Copper, Zinc, Sulfur, Selenium and Germanium with Vitamin B1 – Thiamine, Vitamin B2 – Riboflavin, Vitamin B3 – Niacin, Vitamin B5 – Pathothenic acid, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B9 – Folate, Vitamin C, Protein Fiber, and only 1 gram of sugar for 100g of garlic.

Garlic as Herbal Supplement

These days garlic is used as an herbal supplement to help prevent heart disease, lower high cholesterol and high blood pressure, and to boost the immune system.

Some evidence exists that eating garlic regularly may also help protect against certain types of cancer, Please consult your family physician before initiating a garlic treatment regimen.

Garlic and Bacteria

In 1858, Louis Pasteur wrote that garlic killed bacteria. As he maintained, it was effective even against some bacteria resistant to other factors. He also noted that garlic killed Helicobacter pylori.

The antiseptic properties of garlic were confirmed in the keeping down of cholera (in 1913), typhoid fever and diphtheria (in 1918) in Beirut (Tucakov 1948).

Albert Schweitzer, the famous physician and humanitarian, used garlic in Africa to treat amoebic dysentery.

Garlic later attained a status as a folk remedy, and was no longer taken seriously by scientists, medical practitioners or researchers until two decades ago, when garlic research blossomed in laboratories worldwide.

One of such researches, concluded that garlic may have direct benefits against the “seven major diseases of our time” hypertension (high blood pressure), hyperlipemia (high cholesterol), heavy metal intoxication, infectious diseases, free-radical damage, cancer and immune deficiency diseases.

 French phytotherapist Lekrek used garlic as a preventive remedy with success during the great pandemic of influenza, the so-called ‘Spanish fever’, in 1918.

During the epidemic of influenza in America during 1917 and 1918, people wore a necklace of garlic when going out in public.

Garlic and Vampires

Garlic was also believed by some culture to have the power to ward off vampires (Mindell, 1994). Transylvanian peasants draped garlands of it over their doorways to banish these fanged devils and evil spirits, and garlic cloves were hung around the necks of young girls throughout Europe to protect them from the vampire’s deadly kiss.

According to legend, the three things vampires feared the most were sunshine, the cross or crucifix and garlic. (It must work. Have you seen any vampires lately?), Even if you don’t believe in vampires, garlic would protect you from a lot of pathogens.

It contain vitamins, a lot of trace metals, fiber, selenium and many others. It has been used as an alternative medicine for many years. There are a lot of advantages in using garlic, on a daily basis.

Consumption of Garlic

In eating of garlic, you should not consume just one clove and expect garlic to wave its magic wand and cleanse your body. It has to be taken in moderate amount, continuously to get the medicinal advantages of the bulb.

For a few medical conditions (Please consult your family physician before initiating a garlic treatment regimen) garlic would provide an instant relief and for a few, it would take more time that the medicine prescribed by the doctors. Thus, garlic is an alternative medicine, which has to be used along with the doctor’s medicine for major medical conditions. Do you need supply of Garlic?