The Healing Kiva Presents:
Wisdom from Dr. John Christopher's Herbal Legacy on Energy and Bone Restoration
Adrenal Health: Part 1 - Blood Sugar
by Nelson, Dr. Christopher's Herb Shop
The most common and noticeable symptom when health declines is fatigue.
Right now adrenal fatigue, particularly thyroid health, is getting a lot of press. I get many people with diagnosed hypothyroidism. And it is true that adrenal fatigue is very prevalent in industrialized society.
Yes, stress and overwork will aggravate this condition, and that it is often the hardest working people who are labeled with this condition.
But when someone wants help with a thyroid problem, the thyroid isn't necessarily always the best place to start. The thyroid is a part of the adrenal system, and is very 'high up' there, founded on several other adrenal glands. From one point of view, if anything that the thyroid is built on goes out of order, it is then the thyroid's job to pick up the slack. If this is the case, you can supplement for the thyroid, and you will feel better, but you will become dependent on supplementation.
Until the other systems of the body are able to do their job independently, you will be running on emergency fuel for typical tasks.
Your thyroid supplies adrenaline. This emergency fuel was not intended to be the primary source of energy. The pancreas will usually use its reserve enzymes before the thyroid is called on, and it is actually the liver that stores the body's main fuel, glucose. The kidneys then form the foundation of the adrenal system.
Often, it doesn't take much digging to find out someone has a blood sugar imbalance (hypoglycemia, diabetes, etc.) along with their thyroid problem. What this means is that such a person can achieve much better relief from the symptoms working closer to the cause, not even working directly on the thyroid.
When the pancreas doesn't work, you can run into similar symptoms. Fatigue, inability to digest food, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, suicidal tendencies and even insanity can be experienced in blood sugar problems. Usually, when a person feels this fatigue, they take a stimulant like coffee, or eat something sugary or high in carbs (probably because they are a very active person with little time) giving them a boost to get them by for a few hours, only to crash later. Eventually this person can feel tired 100% of the time, as this only aggravates the problem.
The liver also has a heck of a lot to do. It is responsible for managing all toxins in the body, breaking down hormones and storing fuel. If it has to work cleaning up more because of a junk diet, it will not be able to focus on storing energy, so refined foods need to be avoided. If there is a problem, eat fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds until you can get things under wraps.
The first key here is to look at the diet. If the pancreas is out, concentrated sweets, including fruit juice and agave need to go. They will wear you out, to the point where you feel tired eating them, yet crave them for energy. Complex proteins, such as dairy or meat foods, are much more difficult to break down than plant amino acids, and wear more on the adrenals.
Focus on using low glycemic foods. Sprouted grains will provide fuel longer than simple sugars, and won't spike the blood sugar. These still need to be taken moderately with prudence. Vegetables are always great (not large amounts of potatoes or starch veggies).
Avocados are an excellent calorie source, will help you feel full and are almost a specific for blood sugar complaints. Sugar snap peas or green beans are almost perfect foods for helping the pancreas heal, if eaten daily and not overcooked or canned. Dandelion greens not only cleanse the liver, but contain a natural source of the valuable inulin. These three foods are potent healers, and it isn't uncommon to get a large energy boost merely by adding these to the daily diet. In fact, string beans alone have been the key for many type II diabetics for full recovery (5 small meals a day with 1 cup of string bean juice at each meal).
If the problem is caught early enough, diet may be the only needed therapy. If it is more severe, herbs can provide an immediate restoration of energy, and over time, support the body in toning up the adrenals to proper health. Next week we will discuss the effective use of herbs for this purpose.
Adrenal Health: Part II - Feeding the Adrenals with Herbs
by Nelson, Dr. Christopher's Herb Shop
Last week we talked about the impact of diet and blood sugar of adrenal health, particularly the pancreas. When using herbs to feed any of the adrenal glands, we want to avoid using stimulants that will cause these organs to work harder, only to be more worn out in the end. It is much better to feed and rebuild over a period of time.
There are certain herbs that will feed the entire system. Licorice root is such an herb. Although it is very, very sweet tasting, it does not aggravate blood sugar, but instead helps balance it. It is excellent for an energy boost and stamina. Alexander the great loved it so much, he would supply his armies with it as they marched. As long as a periodic break is used with it (one full week off after six weeks), no side effects are experienced with standard dosage. If you continue to use it beyond six weeks, you may experience raised blood pressure. Despite this, it is one of the most valuable herbs to support the body in a case of adrenal failure, as it will encourage the adrenal glands to manufacture their own chemicals, and strengthen them over time.
Mullein is a universal food for all glands. Dr. Christopher often combined mullein with lobelia (3:1 ratio) as a simple remedy for thyroid problems, or to provide a more aggressive therapy in conjunction with another herbal formula. It was the foundation for several of the formulas, and it is in all of Dr. Christopher's formulas specifically for the adrenal glands.
Astragalus will provide a large, long-lasting boost of energy and feed the adrenals. In my opinion, this is the herb to replace the stimulant drinks that body builders use. Apart from being pure food for the adrenal glands, it is one of the top herbs for boosting the immune system. Some people want to exercise, but are literally physically worn out even when sedentary. This herb has been the key for people to have the means to exercise again. It is a safe herb, widely used with no reported safety problems.
Cedar berry is the savior of the pancreas. Within a week's use a diabetic can greatly reduce the amount of insulin they take, or eliminate insulin dependency altogether. No other herb as yet can compare to the cedar berry in cases of severe blood sugar problems.
Dandelion is a useful liver cleanser. As the liver stores the main fuel for the body, it is wise to keep it in good shape. It also contains natural inulin, which makes it an herb that can also be used for pancreas problems.
Before we had insulin or cedar berries, the best medicine most people could get was chromium. Chromium is quite useful for a blood sugar problem, although by itself it doesn't accomplish too much. The fact that it is highly concentrated in juniper berries is a cause to celebrate. The adrenal glands rest on the kidneys, which literally provide a foundation for the adrenal glands. Juniper berries are arguably the best kidney plants on the planet. Being able to strengthen the kidneys while feeding the adrenals is excellent.
None of these herbs will bring the highs and lows that damage the adrenals. Most conventional stimulants will make the already exhausted organs work harder. These herbs will actually feed them properly, so that the fatigue can go away and the body remains stronger.
Although the herbs are potent, make sure you get to the cause. Major stress calls for a shift of perspective. The adrenals breaking down is Mother Nature's way of saying you need a break. If you will not take a break she will break you so that you do. If life has become something that you don't have time to enjoy, it may be a good time to question whether all the activities you're engaged in are really serving you.
Detailed information of herbal formulas on www.HerbalLegacy.com
* Adrenal Formula
* Pancreas Formula
* Herbal Thyroid
* Thyroid Maintenance
* Kidney Formula
* Liver & Gallbladder Formulas
Find Dr. Christopher's Herbal Formulas, single herbs, essential oils, books and more at Dr. Christopher's Original Herb Shop: www.drchristophersherbshop.com.
To read previous issues of the Herb Shop Newsletter please visit:
Cool Stories about Bone Restorations:
Complete Tissue & Bone and Burn Ointment
by Cathy Gileadi (co-author of Every Woman's Herbal)
Dr. Christopher's burn ointment is made by blending equal parts of wheat germ oil and honey in a blender, and adding comfrey leaves, fresh or dried, until the mixture becomes thick. I sometimes add a little slippery elm. This mixture is fantastic. It keeps the wound moist but helps restore flesh to its proper condition.
One of our children jumped off a table and landed wrong on a foot, breaking one of the bones. We didn't realize the bone was broken until a couple of days later. The usual medical treatment would be to rebreak the bone, set it, and put it in a cast.
Instead, for a week, during the night, we plastered burn ointment all over the foot, bound it up in a white strip of cloth, and pinned a washcloth around that. Within a week that foot was completely healed, the bone set properly, and the child could run and play as before.
Dr. Christopher's Complete Tissue and Bone ointment is also fantastic for these serious injuries. His son David and he were at a convention in the northwest of the United States. A beautiful young lady came up to the booth and said, "How do you like my fingers?" They were nicely groomed, of course, and the Doctor said, "Fine." "Can you tell which finger has been cut off?" she persisted. They couldn't, of course. She said that one of the fingers had been cut off, and she had used the Complete Tissue and Bone formula, and the knuckle had grown back and the bone and flesh restored. The nail, which had been completely removed, grew back on, and was as pretty as the others.
A similar case: One of Dr. Christopher's neighbors had been in a terrible car accident. Two-thirds of her kneecap had torn off and, although she had other injuries, she worried most about this one. Doctors told her the legs would always be stiff and deformed without the kneecap. She used the Complete Tissue and Bone formula and the kneecap grew back. Dr. Christopher was sitting in his former restaurant in the University Mall in Orem, Utah, and the lady came up and said, "Good morning. How do you like my knees?" She pulled her dress up above her knees. He told her they looked fine--a little embarrassed--and asked if they had been damaged. She replied that one had; could he tell which one? She said they were both the same now, because the flesh had been renewed with the Complete Tissue and Bone formula. She could bend and squat easily, with perfect functioning of that knee.
One of the most outstanding examples of this formula's use came with a family whose father had really ridiculed Dr. Christopher. He was a businessman, but he liked to fuss with his automobiles. He had taken one of the motors out of his cars, and had hoisted it into the air. One of his daughters was playing down on the floor of the garage when something happened to the hoist and it came loose, dropping the car engine on this little girl, mashing her pelvic area and hips. The doctors told her father that the injury was too severe to do anything about. This man had heard about the Complete Tissue and Bone formula, and he used it as a fomentation over the entire area where it had been mashed. The particles went jelly-like over a week or two and then started to form. They formed the bones and the pelvic area came back identical to what it was before. As in a jigsaw puzzle, each piece went back into place. This girl went on to live a normal life.