Herbs & Supplements

The variety of vitamins and natural supplements available today can be confusing and overwhelming. The NorthStar blog on herbs and supplements provides the latest updates on what's out there, what works, what doesn't and why.

  1. RegeneCell Reviews – Does it Really Work… SURE DOES!

    RegeneCell antioxidant supplement RegeneCell is NorthStar Nutritionals premiere antioxidant supplement, designed to help you slam the brakes on aging and help you feel decades younger.  So it is likely that you heard that RegeneCell can help you keep…

    • A brain so sharp you can be able to retrieve any piece of information--pin numbers, birthdays, phone numbers--on command
    • Energy that keeps you going through your day
    • Skin that wrinkles bounce off of like a trampoline

    And now, you’re curious to find out if RegeneCell really works, if it really is a premier antioxidant supplement. Just continue reading and you may be amazed at what our customers had to say about RegeneCell

    One Product, So Many Supplements

    Each scoop of RegeneCell contains:

    • A powerful multivitamin and multi mineral complex including important trace minerals that other multivitamins leave out...
    • At least 12 sources of free radical-fighting antioxidants -- including grape seed extract, green tea extract, CoQ10, and Astaxanthin...
    • Resveratrol – the breakthrough anti-aging compound from red wine
    • Digestion – enhancing probiotics AND a digestive enzyme blend – for comfortable, regular digestion
    • Lycopene and Lutein for healthy vision support
    • Nattokinase for cardiovascular support
    • Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) – to support healthy energy and healthy blood sugar levels

    And more! Which is why we weren’t surprised to receive RegeneCell reviews from customers that were thrilled to get so much in one formula. After all, taking every single supplement a person needs in pill form can be daunting. The thought of taking over fifty supplements individually? That’s just too much.

    And it’s why Valerie Simon of Milwaukee loves RegeneCell and continues taking it for how it makes her feel:

     "I started taking RegeneCell when I found out it has almost everything in it I wanted to take anyway. I feel especially good!"

    Because RegeneCell offers more than fifty of the most powerful anti-aging supplements in one scoop-- No more tracking doses, no more choking down huge numbers of pills to reap their benefits. Just a single scoop of RegeneCell taken with food will do the trick.

    Tina Cornbush appreciates the ease of RegeneCell’s single scoop dose, almost as much as she appreciates what RegeneCell does for her!

     "I absolutely love RegeneCell. It allows me to take a number of supplements all at once, and I definitely notice the difference when I don’t take it."

    Anti-Aging at Any Age

    When you’ve got a supplement that may help bring aging to a screeching halt, it doesn’t matter how old you are when you take it. Janette Hanks is proof of that…

     "I have been taking RegeneCell for over 4 years, and have recommended it to my daughter. I am 81 years old, and RegeneCell makes it so that I still have enough energy to take exercise classes."

    According to the RegeneCell reviews we’ve received even doctors are impressed. Just ask Suzanne Swicklick. "

     “RegeneCell amazed my doctor."

    The Best of the Best

    RegeneCell doesn’t just combine a lot of supplements for the sake of bulking up its ingredients list. The anti-aging supplements in RegeneCell are the best of the best – and the RegeneCell reviews reflect that.

    Perhaps Erin Leonard of Las Vegas said it best when she wrote:

     "There is no way to compare RegeneCell to any other anti-aging product. It helps me turn the clock back… I feel fantastic and look 20 years younger. I am now full of energy, sleep like a baby, and it even helps me control my weight.  My doctor even said this is the best combination he has ever seen."

    There you have them – RegeneCell supplement reviews from real people, just like you, who are thrilled with the results they’re seeing and feeling.

    We’re so confident you can get these same results from RegeneCell that it’s backed by our Gold Standard Guarantee. If you aren't 100% thrilled with the way you look and feel after taking RegeneCell, simply return every bottle in your order and we’ll refund your entire purchase price. It’s really that easy. You have nothing to lose.

    In fact, order today, and you can take an extra 25% off your purchase price. Simply enter promo code W650Q6ZN at check out and we’ll deduct 25% from your final order, automatically.

    You’ve read the RegeneCell reviews, and people are blown away. It’s time to experience the mid-blowing results for you. Order RegeneCell today!

    *Discount applies to first order or first ADS shipment only. Cannot be combined with any other discounts.

  2. Benefits of probiotics—they may help protect your bones

    Step on a crack and break your mother’s back… but not if she’s on a probiotic.

    I know, that’s not exactly the way the old childhood chant goes, but some exciting new ‘benefits of probiotics’ research might soon force us to make that change to the old classic. Once again, good-belly-bug-producing probiotics -- already linked to better overall health -- are making news. This time the focus is on our bones.

    The mouse study, just published in the journal PLOS ONE, has found that the benefits of probiotics include helping to protect you against bone loss and fractures!

    Researchers gave a group of menopausal mice drinking water that was spiked with probiotics for six weeks. They found that the probiotics significantly protected the mice “from induced bones loss compared to the controls.”

    And the good bugs didn’t stop there. They also appeared to reduce the amount of calcium that the mice lost through urination and went to work on the immune system, reducing inflammation as well.

    More research needs to be done, of course, but the results are already very exciting. Besides, there’s no question that the benefits of probiotics. But they may soon prove to be a useful therapy for combating bone loss, osteoporosis, and fractures as we age too.
     

  3. NorthStar Nutritionals Reviews: 5-Star Reviews & 6 Reasons to Shop With Us

    With so many companies out there that sell vitamins and supplements, it makes sense to ask why you should use NorthStar Nutritionals for your supplement needs. It’s a question we respect and can easily answer – with not 1 but 6 reasons you should turn to NorthStar Nutritionals.

    1. NorthStar Nutritionals is in partnership with Dr. Allan Spreen, MD, one of the most highly respected doctors in the mainstream medical and alternative medicine communities. Nationally recognized as the Nutrition Physician, Dr. Spreen has been committed to helping patients find their ultimate health for decades. His vision guides every vitamin, supplement, and pain relief formula we develop. You could even say Dr. Spreen is our North Star, the man who guides us and keeps us on track, making sure NorthStar Nutritionals keeps us on the cutting edge of nutritional supplement breakthroughs.

    Continue reading

  4. Statins and memory loss – Beware of the Statin Stupor

    If you’re on a statin… or are close to someone who is… I’m willing to bet that the results of a new study—published in the journal PLOS ONE—on statins and memory loss won’t surprise you all that much. That’s because memory problems are a common complaint from statin users. The good old Statin Stupor, as I like to call it. In fact, last year even the sleepy and slow FDA finally got around to forcing Big Pharma to add a side-effect warning to their statin drug labels alerting users that they could affect their cognitive function.
  5. Is Monsanto’s Roundup Ready GMO soy making you sick?

    I’m what you’d call a conspiracy realist. While I don’t go off on wild goose chases, I DO believe in following the evidence, no matter where it leads me—even if that happens to be smack dab into the heart of a so-called “conspiracy.” After all, you know what they say, “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you.” And when it comes to the nightmare that is Roundup Ready GMO soy, despite cries of paranoia from the mainstream press, I’ve been warning you about the growing evidence of risk for years.
  6. Lack of sleep could raise your stroke risk 54%

    I’ve told you before how dangerous a lack of sleep could be to your health. Now a new study out of Taiwan really drives that point home with a bang. Researchers found that sleeplessness, or insomnia, may boost your risk of stoke by a staggering 54 percent. The four-year-long study compared the health records of more than 21,000 people who suffer with insomnia to 64,000 who don’t have the condition. When the researchers crunched the numbers, and adjusted for other factors, they say there was a clear link between lack of sleep and stroke. And the worse your sleeping problem is the higher your stroke risk is.

    From diabetes to brain damage.. lack of sleep raises your risks

    As I’ve explained before, insomnia can raise your risk for a number of health problems including high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes and even brain damage. It now looks like we need to add stroke to that list. Perhaps must shocking of all is that younger insomniacs, people between the ages of 18 to 34, were eight times more likely to suffer a stroke when compared to their snoozing peers. Proving that no matter your age, you need to start taking sleep—or lack of it—seriously. But, whatever you do, don’t fall for Big Pharma’s dangerous sleep drugs. To find out why sleeping pills aren’t the answer to lack of sleep, as well as read up on some natural shut-eye tricks, click here.
  7. Depression raises heart failure risk by 40 percent!

    No matter what you call it—down in the dumps, feeling blue, in a funk, bummed out, being a Gloomy Gus, or in low spirits—it’s time to start getting serious about depression. Because a new study, presented at EuroHeartCare 2014, found that you might not just be dragging around feeling doomed, you very well could BE doomed if you don’t do something about those blues. Researchers in Norway uncovered a dramatic link between depression and deadly heart failure. In a study that included almost 63,000 people, scientists found that moderate to severe depression could send your risk of heart failure skyrocketing. The large, long-term HUNT study gathered a variety of data from their volunteers, including body mass indexes, physical activity levels, smoking habits, blood pressures, and depression levels. During the 11 year study 1,500 people developed heart failure. And when the data was crunched, a glaring link between depression and heart failure was uncovered.

    Depression kills

    People with mild depression had a 5 percent increased risk of developing the potentially deadly heart condition, when compared to the volunteers with no symptoms of depression. But, if you’re in the midst of a moderate or major soul-sucking depression you might want to sit down for this next bit. YOUR risk for heart failure could jump by a staggering 40 percent, according to the study data! In other words, the worse you feel the greater your risk. And being depressed could, quite literally, kill you. To make matters worse, when you’re depressed you’re your own worst enemy. If you’ve ever had a serious case of the blues you know exactly what I’m talking about. Depression makes it hard to care about anything, let alone our health. We stop watching what we eat. Getting up from the couch can seem like too much effort most days. And exercising? Forget about it. Bad habits, like smoking and heavy drinking, often make an appearance. And your weight can balloon. But if you’re thinking these factors might be responsible for that 40 percent leap in heart failure risk you’re barking up the wrong tree. The researchers adjusted the data for factors like obesity and smoking before they reached that shocking figure. No, for the real reason your heart failure risk skyrockets, you need to take a look at an old enemy… stress. You see, when you’re depressed your body reacts by sending your inflammation levels skyrocketing and having your adrenal glands pump out a horde of stress hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol. Your pulse rate rises, your breathing speeds up, your blood pressure climbs and your blood sugar spikes. And the more severe your depression, the more severe your stress reaction is going to be. Eventually, the build-up of all those stress hormones triggers inflammation and a hardening and narrowing of your arteries (atherosclerosis) that could lead to heart disease, heart attack or stroke. The truth is, ignoring your serious case of depression in the hopes that it might go away might not be just a costly mistake it may be a deadly one.

    Beat depression naturally with supplements

    Reducing your stress and reversing your depression is critical. But don’t become a victim of the failed mainstream medicine approach to the problem... heavy-duty antidepressants (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). Because, despite Big Pharma’s cheerleading—and the wildly positive promises they make in their billion dollar ad campaigns—most depression drugs have been shown to be no more effective than a placebo at best, and linked to serious (and possibly even deadly) side effects at worst. Instead, turn to some tried-and-true natural approaches I’ve recommended before, starting with having your vitamin D levels checked. Running low on this important vitamin has been linked with depression. If you find your levels are subpar, top them up by spending more time outdoors and adding a D supplement to your routine. You can safely take up to 5,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. Your doctor can help you decide the amount that’s right for you. Next, make sure you’re getting enough vitamin B6 and vitamin B12. Vitamin B12, often called the “energy vitamin,” is used by every single cell in your body, and B6 is needed to kick your “feel good” neurotransmitters (serotonin and norepinephrine) into action. And low levels of vitamin B6 and B12 have been linked to depression. Make sure that you’re taking a good quality B-complex supplement daily. If you’re not already following my advice to take an omega-3 supplement, you may want to start. Not only are omega-3s good for your heart health studies show they’re also linked to mood and may help reverse depression.(Bonus, they also help fight inflammation!) And, finally, you might want to give curcumin, nature’s antidepressant spice, a try. Curcumin has long been used by opened-minded doctors as a natural mood booster. In one study, curcumin performed at least as well as Big Pharma darling Prozac in beating serious cases of depression. And of course the spice managed this feat without dangerous side effects.
  8. SlimSuccess: Has the key to your weight loss dreams been found?

    Spring has sprung. The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, and you’re hiding in the house weeping over the shocking numbers on the bathroom scale. If you were blindsided by what you saw at your last weigh in, trust me, you’re not alone. Winter has a way of making us ALL pack on the pounds… especially around our comfort-food-loving bellies. And let’s face it, when you’re dragging around a little extra weight, getting out and “enjoying” the beautiful weather can seem more like a chore than it does a reward. You know what that means, right? Yes, it’s time to dust off the dreaded D-word... diet. But if you’re among the many who have struggled to lose weight the old-fashioned way, with diet and exercise alone... if you’ve tried to drop the pounds, but the number on the scale seemed practically super-glued in place… getting started can seem next to impossible.

    Pounds melt off 3 times faster!

    The truth is we could all use a little extra help when it comes to beating the battle of the bulge. But what if I told you that a LOT of help is available, in a new formula called SlimSuccess? And what if I told you that SlimSuccess is SO powerful that you could lose 3 TIMES MORE WEIGHT than you could with diet and exercise alone? It might sound outrageous, but I assure you, it’s true. In fact, for fourteen long years this incredible weight-loss breakthrough… an extract mix shown in 2 double-blind studies to help melt stubborn belly flab… has remained hidden away. Now, one brilliant doctor has finally revealed the truth about what could turn out to be the most potent weight-loss booster ever uncovered. And, believe it or not, it all started with “fat proof mice.” You see, over a decade ago a group of bright scientists stumbled across something amazing while studying our furry little friends. It was a sort of hidden “off switch” buried deep in the mice’s genes. And when they flipped that switch, no matter how much junk food the critters indulged in, they stayed trim and slim. And the most exciting part is that humans share this very same gene with mice. Known as the PLIN gene, this potential “off switch” controls the way we burn and store fat by releasing a protein called perilipin Perilipin is your belly fat’s best friend, essentially coating fat cells and protecting them from your metabolism—and your best efforts at losing weight. But if science could figure out way to break through that protective perilipin coating—essentially flipping the same “off switch” in HUMAN fat cells as they did in mice—than could mean exciting results for humans too. Unfortunately, scientists hit a brick wall, and unable to figure out how to make this incredible weight-loss breakthrough work for humans, the research was dropped and soon forgotten.

    Belly beating breakthrough

    That’s where that brilliant doctor I mentioned earlier comes in. Dr. Mark Stengler, was able to connect the dots between those old “fat proof” mice and some exciting new research being performed at UC Davis Medical Center. There, researchers studying plants used in the ancient Indian medical practice known as Ayurvedic medicine, stumbled upon two powerful tropical plants—Garcinia Mangostana and East Indian Globe Thistle—that both showed great promise in the fight against fat-protecting perilipin. And when the carefully combined and concentrated extracts were introduced to some fat cells, the scientists watched in amazement as the protective perilipin layer practically vanished from sight. But the research didn’t end with those petri dishes and microscopes; the powerful combo was soon put to the true test with real humans. The remarkable results of two double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trials showed that this powerful extract combo is the real deal. All of the trial volunteers took a 30-minute stroll every day, and ate a normal 2,000 calorie a day diet. But the lucky folks who got the extract lost an incredible 3 times more weight than the volunteers who didn’t get the extract! With results like that it’s easy to see why Dr. Stengler chose to put these two powerful weight-busting plants at the center of his new breakthrough formula SlimSuccess. But he didn’t stop there. Dr. Stengler knows how tough it can be to stick to your healthy-eating plan when you’re being tempted all the time by well-meaning friends and family. And snack attacks get to the best of us. That’s why he also included natural safranal. Research shows that this powerful compound, carefully extracted from the saffron plant, can help chase away the hungries. In other words, SlimSuccess (from our friends and affiliates at BestHealth Nutritionals) contains the perfect weight-loss-supporting dream team. By combining powerful botanicals that can help you burn fat faster, with one that can give you the willpower you need to say no to diet-sabotaging foods, Dr. Stengler has given you everything you need to say goodbye to that ugly flab faster than you ever dreamed possible. Click here to learn more about this groundbreaking formula, as well as how you can try it risk free… and even score a FREE bonus bottle to boot!
  9. Fish oil could help you ace your next dental exam

    I’ve told you before about the link between un-healthy teeth and gums and heart disease. And you may know that mouth problems are often connected to other serious conditions like diabetes and leukemia. Well I’ve got some great news! It turns out that a simple supplement… one I already recommend for everyone… may be the key to keeping your chompers healthy. According to the results of a new study, omega-3-packed fish oil supplements could significantly improve your periodontal health.

    Keep your teeth in tip-top shape

    In the 12-week double-blind study, volunteers with moderate to severe periodontal problems were given standard dental treatments (scaling and root planning) and either a daily placebo, or an omega-3 fish oil fatty acid supplement (180 mg EPA and 120 mg DHA). The inflammation-fighting omega-3 fish oil produced some impressive results. The lucky volunteers who got the fish oil saw a significant improvement in their gingivitis and gum bleeding. And the deep pockets between their teeth and gums… a classic hallmark of periodontal disease… were vastly reduced, sliced almost in half. So if you haven’t already heeded my advice and started taking a daily fish oil supplement you now have one more reason to start. And if you’re already taking one, you can feel good that you’re helping to keep your teeth in tip-top shape.
  10. Vitamin D deficiency could be deadly

    Barely a month goes by when we don’t see yet one more unfounded attack on a vital vitamin or necessary nutrient. It’s become so predictable you can practically set your watch by it. They won’t be satisfied until supplements are removed from the picture completely—and along with them, your freedom to choose. This time it’s vitamin D that’s been placed on the chopping block, a nutrient critical to combatting bone loss, cancer, heart disease, depression, weight gain, inflammation and very likely diabetes, autism, dementia, autoimmune diseases, chronic pain, high blood pressure, and more. In fact, this vitamin is SO critical to our health and wellbeing that frankly this latest review trashing this valuable vitamin—published in the April issue of the British Medical Journal (BMJ)—is downright irresponsible. Even worse, when you consider how many of us have a dangerously low vitamin D deficiency, taking the researcher’s conclusions seriously could be as good as signing your own death warrant. According to the researchers, “Despite a few hundred systematic reviews and meta-analyses, highly convincing evidence of a clear role of vitamin D does not exist for any outcome…” Nonsense! Besides, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that BAD science is going to lead to BAD results. And in the case of this BMJ-published “umbrella review,” they should have seen the bad coming from a mile away. Since the researchers chose to include flawed and poorly executed studies in the mix, it really isn’t surprising that the conclusions they reached are essentially rubbish, too.

    Vitamin D deficiency seriously bad for your health

    Let’s take a closer look at what research has already proven about vitamin D. But we’ll have to just hit some of the highlights, because we’d literally be here all day if I tried to cover EVERYTHING that D is good for. To begin with, despite its poor execution, the umbrella review in question still showed around an 11 percent drop in death risk for those taking a D supplement. In fact, study after study has shown us the value of this vitamin, demonstrating what a deficiency of D can lead to... starting with trouble for your ticker. In a seven-year collaboration, researchers from the University of Colorado and Massachusetts General Hospital uncovered evidence linking heart disease and vitamin D deficiency in men and women 65 or older. Seniors with the lowest levels of D were three times more likely to die from heart disease. And those volunteers who had a vitamin D deficiency at the start of the study were 2.5 times more likely to have died from ANY cause by the end of it. Now a new study confirms that if your vitamin D blood levels fall below 20 ng/mL (or 50 nmol/l), your risk of heart disease shoots up by a third. Even worse, if your levels dip into the dangerously low 10 ng/mL area, your risk for atherosclerosis (the hardening and narrowing of your arteries) doubles! But your heart isn’t the only organ that craves D: your brain is a big fan too. In fact, over the years research has linked D deficiencies to Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and even depression. And just last year, an animal study—published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine—showed us just how critical the vitamin is to cognitive performance and memory.

    D doesn’t just target organ health either… it’s a whole-body elixir that could help to both keep cancer at bay,and drive down your diabetes risk.

    Vitamin D targets whole body health

    Studies have shown an association between vitamin D and cancer risk, and many experts agree that the vitamin likely offers some protection against a variety of cancers including breast, colon, prostate and bladder cancers. Even mainstream medicine organizations, like The National Cancer Institute, agree that there’s epidemiological evidence linking adequate D levels to a reduced risk. Research has also revealed that vitamin D could play an important role in preventing diabetes. For example, a Tufts University study found that higher concentrations of D are associated with a lower diabetes risk. And then there’s the meta-analysis of more than 100,000 people that sheds some light on how it is that D may be driving down diabetes risk. Blood work from 28 different studies revealed that those men and women with the highest D levels tended to avoid the dreaded collection of pre-diabetes symptoms… including high blood pressure, high fasting blood sugars, low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides, and a large belly... that are commonly known as metabolic syndrome. The truth is that a vitamin D deficiency and diabetes link is so promising that even the mainstream medicine drones couldn’t ignore it anymore. Late last year the VERY mainstream National Institutes of Health (NIH) finally decided to fund a large-scale clinical trial to explore the effects of D on the disease. And those really are just a few of the D highlights. There are literally hundreds of studies linking D to good health. The evidence is so vast that public health guidelines here in the United States, as well as those in many other countries, recognize the critical importance of maintaining healthy D levels. Unfortunately, their D recommendations are entirely too low. That’s why up to 90 percent of us may be walking… or dragging… around with a vitamin D deficiency. Besides trying to spend a little bit of time every day outside in the sunshine, I typically recommend taking 2,000 to 4,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. Your doctor can run a simple blood test to figure out what your current levels are.
  11. Silence the ringing in your ears

    Dear Dr. Spreen, For years now I’ve had this annoying ringing in my ears. The doctors say I’m fine, but it’s driving me nuts. Sometimes I have trouble concentrating at work, and now it’s even keeping me up at night. Am I just going crazy? J.L. from Texas Dear J.L., No, you’re NOT crazy, and you’re far from alone. In fact, experts estimate that up to 50 million Americans suffer with unexplained noises… like buzzing, hissing, or ringing… in their ears. But the medical mainstream can’t see it or measure it—and they certainly don’t have any answers for resolving it—so they dismiss it, calling it a “phantom” and sending you home to suffer. Luckily they couldn’t be more wrong. You can silence that racket in your head, and it all starts with nutrition. Yes, nutrition. You see, your ear is a very delicate instrument and nutritional deficiencies, free radicals, and even stress can throw things out of whack leaving you with an unwanted symphony of noises in your head. But the right combination of nutritional supplements can deliver blessed silence once and for all. Healthy circulation is critical to healthy ears, so start with gingko biloba that can help open up the fine blood vessels that feed your ears, allowing oxygen and nutrients to flow in. Next, add in circulation-promoting superstar dong quai. Toss in some Rehmannia glutinosa, commonly known as Chinese Foxglove, to deliver some free-radical-fighting antioxidants.  And then there’s the hearing helper magnesium that’s been proven to promote better hearing AND drive away the annoying buzzing, ringing and clicking. All of these, and over a dozen more hearing hero ingredients, can be found in NorthStar Nutritionals breakthrough formula Healthy Hear. Click here to learn more, or to order your own bottle of Healthy Hear, and be on your way to silencing that ringing in your ears once and for all.
  12. Don’t fall for bogus new statin guidelines

    Are you on a statin? If not, hold onto your hat, as you might be much sooner than you think. In fact, according to new statin “guidelines,” if you’re over 60 it’s practically a done deal… more on that in a moment. And if you are already on one, you better back up and make some room, because you’re about to get a LOT more company… around 13 million new statin users (I sure hope you have some extra guest towels on hand). You may have heard by now, while we were ramping up for the holidays—and still bundled up in mittens and scarves—the “geniuses” at The American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) got together to dream up the most insane set of new statin guidelines you could imagine. But what Big Pharma’s best buds at the AHA and ACC actually did was give the drug companies the best late Christmas gift EVER. Their proposed Mickey Mouse guidelines vastly expand who can get these dangerous drugs, practically proposing every blessed American adult start popping these cholesterol-lowering “poisonous” pills. And if you suspect I’m exaggerating, unfortunately I’m not.

    Statins for everyone!

    If you’re over 40 you have around a 50% chance of your doc whipping out a prescription pad and dashing off a new statin prescription for you at your next checkup. And if you’re a man 60 or older, you may as well go ahead and clear a spot behind the bathroom mirror for your new statin bottle. If you don’t fall into those two categories, or your cholesterol isn’t elevated, don’t start celebrating too quickly. With the new statin guidelines you might still be getting an invitation to the statins party. Do you smoke? You’re on the guest list. Elevated blood pressure? Good news, your invite’s already in the mail. Diagnosed with diabetes? You get to join the statins club, too. In fact, a recent Duke University analysis found that what the new statin guidelines really mean is that HALF of every single person between the ages of 40 to 75 is now being advised to start downing a statin. And if that sounds crazy to you, that’s because it IS crazy. As I’ve explained before, statins are nothing but bad news.

    Avoid severe statin side effects

    Around 10 to 15 percent of statin users will suffer from—sometimes severe—muscle pain… not to mention serious aches and fatigue. And if you like to exercise for your health, if you become a statin user you better proceed with caution. Your risk for those debilitating muscle pains shoots up to 25 percent. Even worse, you could even be one of the unlucky souls who suffer from—sometimes permanent—muscle damage. But that’s far from the worst side effect that could be hiding in bottom of that statin bottle. Your brain needs cholesterol to stay in tip-top shape. That’s why so many statin users suddenly find themselves suffering from memory problems. And your eyes need the compound to stay crystal clear, so as a statin user you may have cataract surgery in your future. And while those statins are ridding your body of valuable cholesterol, they’re also depleting it of the important antioxidant CoQ10. I’ll give you one guess what organ thrives on the energy-producing abilities of CoQ10:yes, your heart.  In fact, the antioxidant has been proven to slash death risk in heart failure patients by 50 percent, according to researchers in Denmark. But we haven’t even gotten to the worst statin side effect yet. Statins cause your risk for type 2 diabetes to skyrocket. So you could be trading in elevated cholesterol (or even just the potential for elevated cholesterol) for a raging case of diabetes… not to mention all the complications that come along with the disease, including, ironically, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. But with all those side effect risks, at least you can rest assured that statins are significantly lowering your chance of dying from heart attack or heart disease, right? Wrong. In a massive study of 10,000 people, researchers found that statin users still had the same death rate as those with high cholesterol who went the “usual care” route... watching their weight, getting some regular exercise, and not smoking. And, in fact, that’s exactly where my all-natural heart-healthy “prescription” for lowering cholesterol begins… skip the dangerous statin drugs, start watching what you eat, get a little exercise, and quit smoking. Next add in some heart-supporting supplements. To keep your ticker in tip-top shape I recommend L-Carnitine (1,000 mg), magnesium (500 to 800 mg), Coenzyme Q10 (100 mg), and mixed tocopherols vitamin E (400 to 800 IU). If your doctor is trying to force a statin on you because of the new statin “guidelines” it’s time to find a new doc. I recommend a naturopathic doctor you can trust to tailor an individual all-natural plan for you.
  13. Urinary tract infections / superbug threat continues to grow

    The superbug problem didn’t exactly sneak up on us. The writing has been on the wall for years. In fact, I first started warning Guide to Good Health readers about antibiotic resistance at least six years ago. Heck, even the mainstream media began to catch on a couple of years back. So, you’d think we’d be starting to get a handle on the issue by now. Sadly, that’s not the case. Not by a long shot, according to a recent study published in the journal Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control. According to researchers antibiotic resistant infections, such as urinary tract infections (UTIs), are actually on the RISE. It’s yet another case of mainstream medicine doing too little and doing it too late. Instead of dialing back on their overprescribing, many docs’ reaction to the superbug news was to simply switch from their now mostly-useless go-to antibiotics to different antibiotics. And I’m sure you can guess what happened next. These bad bugs, many of them forms of E. coli, are now becoming resistant to even more commonly prescribed antibiotics. Urinary tract infections are the second most common type of infection here in the U.S., with about 8.1 million people visiting the doctor every year looking for some relief. But these misery-causing bugs are now not only resistant to most antibiotics in the penicillin and cephalosporin families, they’ve also become highly resistant to some of the most commonly used drugs for treating urinary infections Ciprofloxacin and Trimethoprim-Sulfamethoxazole. The best way to deal with a urinary tract infection is, obviously, to not get one in the first place. I shared some specific advice on how to UTI-proof yourself a few years back, including some dietary guidelines and supplement tips. If you missed that issue, click here to catch up on the NorthStar Blog. And if you’re already suffering with one of these nasty infections, don’t turn to antibiotics first. They likely won’t knock out your infection anymore anyway, but they CAN destroy your good gut bugs, leaving you wide open for secondary infections.  Instead, consider giving D-mannose a try. D-mannose is the ingredient found in cranberries that naturally fights off infections. And while you may have heard some conflicting reports over the years about cranberries and UTIs, I can assure you that this powerhouse can knock out just about any bladder infection that’s caused by E. coli. You‘ll find D-mannose online and in most natural food stores. Drink a half to a full teaspoonful dissolved in water every half an hour or so for two days.  If you don’t see an improvement after forty-eight hours, THEN make an appointment to see your doc.
  14. Is your mix of meds causing dangerous drug interactions?

    Getting older sure isn’t for sissies. Your hair starts getting thinner, your middle starts getting thicker, and some days you wake up with your joints feeling stiffer than a frozen fish stick in the middle of February. Even worse, around 75 percent of older adults will also end up facing not just one, but multiple chronic medical conditions. And of course, if you’re going to a conventional medicine doctor, you know what that means; drugs, drugs, and MORE drugs and possible drug interactions. Is it really any wonder that with so many different meds (and their side effects) on board, you can start to feel like your head is spinning? But now a new study—published in the journal PLOS One—finds that many of us have to worry about a heck of a lot more than just those “standard” side effects.

    Docs ignore dangers of prescription drug interactions

    Shockingly, nearly 23 percent of older Americans are being prescribed drugs that directly conflict with each other. In other words, there’s a very good chance that one (or more) of the drugs you’re taking could cause dangerous drug interactions and make one of your conditions worse! For example, if you’re diagnosed with heart disease your doc will likely prescribe you a beta blocker to lower your blood pressure. But if you also suffer from COPD that beta blocker can suddenly become a BIG problem. You see, beta blockers can cause airway resistance. And I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that anything that monkeys with respiration is a real no-no for COPD patients. But believe it or not, that’s not even the worst of it. In a case where competing prescriptions exist, you’d expect swift action to correct the potentially dangerous…or even deadly…drug interactions, right? Well, don’t hold your breath. It turns out that only in an appallingly low 16 percent of the cases, are changes made to the prescribed treatments. Meaning, of course, that 84 percent of patients are left to deal with whatever the consequences are of what the study’s authors quaintly refer to as “therapeutic competition.” (I don’t know about you, but when a doctor chooses to simply ignore the fact that his treatments are making me worse, I’m more inclined to call it malpractice. But hey, maybe that’s just me.)

    1 in 5 are prescribed conflicting drugs

    With one-fifth of older Americans receiving conflicting meds for common conditions including diabetes, COPD, dementia, heart failure, hypertension, osteoarthritis, coronary heart disease, and high cholesterol, the odds are good that you—or someone else you care about—will one day become a victim of this accident-waiting-to-happen practice. Yet it sounds like one of the study’s authors, David Lee, assistant professor at Oregon State University, would like us to give docs a bit of slack. According to Lee, “Many physicians are aware of these concerns, but there isn’t much information available on what to do.” Um, I have an idea, Dr. Lee. Call me crazy, but how about asking docs to apply a little common sense to FIX the problem?! For example, if you find out your heart patient also has COPD, don’t stick your head in the sand. Instead, prescribe a beta blocker that doesnt have respiratory side effects. Or, better yet, look for a non-drug alternative. (Hint, the mineral magnesium has been shown to naturally improve lung function, and black tea, vitamin D, and even dark chocolate have all been shown to help with high blood pressure.) But judging by that lousy 16 percent of people whose docs actually made changes, it’s pretty clear that common sense is in incredibly short supply these days. So it looks like, once again, your best bet is going to be to fend for yourself. Start by making sure your doctor takes your full medical history before he prescribes a single treatment. If he refuses, and tries to dash off a prescription and rush you out of his office in fifteen minutes instead, find yourself a new doc. I would suggest an integrative or holistic physician whose goal will be to get you OFF as many meds as possible by targeting your medical problems at their heart, rather than just treating single symptoms.
  15. Is omega 3 fish oil your heart’s best friend?

    A recently completed NIH study might have you soon adding more fish to your menu. According to researchers, the more fatty fish you have in your diet, the more your heart is protected. In fact, if you eat as much fish as our friends in Japan, you may even be able to ward off heart disease. It’s the omega-3s that are found in fish oil that are the key, of course. Fish oil naturally reduces inflammation and helps keep plaque from forming in your arteries. The researchers partnered with Japanese scientists to follow a mix of nearly 300 American and Japanese men for five years. They tracked a variety of heart-disease-related factors, including cholesterol levels, cigarette smoking, drinking, and diabetes and blood pressure status. (Even genetics were considered.) After taking into account all the heart-related factors, the American men, shockingly, had three times more artery calcification than their Japanese counterparts! What was the difference between the two groups? It turns out that the Japanese men had 100% higher levels of omega 3s in their blood streams. In Japan an average person eats about 100 grams of fish every single day—that equals about one and half servings. Even fish fans might find that much fish difficult to swallow. That’s where an omega 3 fish oil supplement can help fill the gap. Just be sure the one you choose comes from a source you trust.
  16. What are the 10 best prostate health supplements for 2014? Infographic

    This infographic shows the 10 best prostate health supplements for 2014. Are you getting enough of these prostate supporters in your diet? prostate health supplements infographic
  17. Vitamin D builds immunities

    If you had been watching me wade through my daily stack of research reading the other day, you’d have spotted me do one heck of a double take. Wondering what the line that caught my eye was? “Our data suggest vitamin D may be involved in maintaining the health of the immune system as well as the skeletal system.”  This remarkable “confession” was spoken by Dr. Mary Ward, one of the author’s on a new study on D that’s been accepted for publication in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. Now, there’s no denying the importance of vitamin D. There’s even a stack of research proving the critical role it plays in our health from fighting off respiratory infections to keeping you out of a nursing home… if you know where to look for it, of course. (Hint, it’s not in the mainstream media, but you can start with a search in the NorthStar Blog’s archives.)

    Be sure to get your D!

    But it’s still quite rare to see such a straightforward conclusion about the significance a vitamin plays in keeping us healthy, from such a mainstream, source. In this case, Irish researchers completed an observational study on 957 adults who were at least 60 years old. They found that those volunteers who were vitamin D deficient had significantly higher biomarkers for inflammation. And that’s important, because these biomarkers are linked to heart disease and other inflammatory conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. So what does this all mean to you and me? I’ll let Dr. Ward explain, “The results indicate immune function may be compromised in older individuals with vitamin D deficiency.” In other words, be sure to get your D! To raise your vitamin D levels, I recommend spending more time outside. But since many of us can’t—or don’t—get all the D we need from sunshine alone I also generally recommend taking up to 5000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. A blood test can help you, and your doc, figure out what’s right for you.
  18. “Break-proofing” your hips against hip fractures

    She broke her hip, ended up in a nursing home, and never came out again. It’s a devastating story we’ve all heard before. But once you reach a certain age, it can quickly go from a sad tale to a frightening one. Because when you enter your golden years you start to fear that it could one day be your own story. Let’s face it; there are few things as frightening as the prospect of losing your independence. And while I don’t want to scare you even more, I must admit that the fear is justified. In the US alone, over 300,000 of us a year will fall victim to that bane of graceful aging, a hip fracture. But “break-proofing” your bones is probably much easier than you think. And while there aren’t, of course, any guarantees that you’ll never suffer from a painful and debilitating hip fracture, a few common supplements could go a long way towards making it highly unlikely. Now if I were to ask you what vitamins you should take for bone health, I bet you would respond with “calcium.” And you would be absolutely right. There’s no question that bone-friendly calcium should be in your “break-proofing” kit. But there are a couple of other nutrients that are essential for bone-health that you might not be aware of. To give your bones everything they need, you should make sure you’re getting enough of these four key nutrients…
    1. Calcium
    2. Vitamin D
    3. Vitamin K
    4. Magnesium
    Raising your levels of these nutrients by choosing the right foods is an excellent first step. Then, rounding them out with supplements can complete the picture. You can up your calcium intake by eating more canned sardines and salmon, both of which have soft calcium rich bones. And dairy products are another good choice. Fish is also a great food to turn to when you want to raise you vitamin D levels. Both the flesh and oil of fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and swordfish are naturally rich in D. Egg yolks, and beef will also provide some D. And don’t forget to spend a little time out in the sunshine every day for another natural boost of this vital vitamin. Vitamin K is often overlooked when it comes to bone health, but it’s an important player in keeping your bones healthy.  K can be found in leafy greens like kale and spinach, broccoli, asparagus, avocados, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts, olive oil, meat, egg yolk, yogurt and green tea. We already knew that the final nutrient in that “break-proofing” kit of yours, magnesium, was a bone-health hero. But a new study out of Norway drives the point home. Norway has MORE than their fair share of hip fractures every year, and researchers wanted to know why. It turns out that the water in certain regions of Norway is super low in magnesium, and in those areas hip fractures tend to sky-rocket. To raise your own magnesium levels, eat more pumpkin seeds, spinach, Swiss chard, sesame seeds, black beans, quinoa, cashews, and sunflower seeds.
  19. Intravenous vitamin C kills cancer cells and extends lives

    A group of brave researchers at the University of Kentucky Medical Center just dropped a bomb on the medical mainstream. They announced that common vitamin C can kill cancer cells, and that some cancer patients can benefit from high-dose intravenous vitamin C therapy. Not only that, the researchers say that the antioxidant appears to also reduce some of the most devastating and toxic side effects of conventional chemotherapy drugs. As you can imagine, the mainstream is reeling from the news. After all, in their view, nutrition-based therapies like vitamin C may as well be Voodoo. Now to be fair, the Kentucky-based scientist’s announcement really shouldn’t have been that much of a bomb, since their findings are right in line with an ever-growing stack of small, but strong, pro-C studies over the years. In fact, you’ve read about some of them right here in the Guide to Good Health. Not to mention there’s a virtual ton of first hand experiences by doctors who have been using intravenous vitamin C to treat their cancer patients since the 70s, as well as the cancer-patients who have reaped the benefits.

    Vitamin C was blacklisted based on bogus trials

    But mainstream medicine is kind of like a spoiled child with his fingers stuck firmly in his ears. Tell a conventional medicine doc that vitamin C has the potential to kill cancer cells and he’ll respond with, “What’s that? Sorry I can’t hear you. My fingers are in my ears.” But wait, all those doctors must have a good reason for refusing to give this life-saving therapy a try, right? Sadly, that’s just not the case. And wait until you hear what the actual reason is. Incredibly, intravenous vitamin C was blacklisted based on some unsuccessful clinical trials on ORAL vitamin C. Yes, countless people have suffered through (and perhaps even lost) their fights with cancer while the mainstream has turned its back on a perfectly safe, and potentially life-saving therapy, based on irrelevant clinical trials! Even a child could tell you that vitamin C sent directly into a vein is not the same thing as swallowing a pill. Oral doses of the water soluble vitamin could NEVER reach the same concentrations as an intravenous dose can.

    Cancer patients lived longer and better with vitamin C

    Thankfully, the University of Kentucky researchers must have smelled something rotten in Denmark. Despite the blacklisting, they felt intravenous vitamin C was still worth another look. In the lab, they were able to prove that the vitamin does indeed kill human cancer cells. Next they showed that high doses of intravenous vitamin C inhibited the growth of tumors… and in some cases even shrank them… in mice with ovarian cancer. And then it was on to that all-important human trial. The clinical trial tracked 27 volunteers who had just been diagnosed with stage-III or stage-IV ovarian cancer.  Each of the patients received either one of two conventional chemotherapy drugs.  But some of the volunteers were also given high doses of intravenous vitamin C. And the results were stunning. Well, stunning, that is, to the mainstream, anyway. For the rest of us they were impressive, but entirely expected. Those volunteers who had received the intravenous vitamin C experienced significantly less of the notoriously nasty side effects of chemo. There was less toxicity to the brain, bone marrow, and major organs. Not only that, the volunteers who got the intravenous vitamin C also lived nearly 9 months longer than those who didn’t get the therapy! In other words, they lived both better AND longer. So it’s official. Intravenous vitamin C helps kill cancer cells, and we even know why. According to study co-author Dr. Jeanne Drisko, “Vitamin C in the bloodstream helps kill cancer cells because it chemically converts into hydrogen peroxide when it interacts with tumors.” When you raise your C levels up high enough—as you do with intravenous therapy—the vitamin slips into the spaces around the cancer cells and does essentially what your white blood cells typically do… beat the cancer into submission. And unlike harsh chemo drugs it leaves the healthy cells unharmed.
    Are you listening mainstream? It’s time to take those fingers out of your ears!
  20. Probiotic health benefits: May help women lose twice the weight

    Since you’re a Guide to Good Health reader, I’m guessing I probably don’t need to tell you how important a bellyful of good bacteria is. As you know, your gut is the center of your entire immune system. And keeping your intestinal flora balanced can help keep you healthy. The trouble is, in today’s world it can be tough to do that. An on-the-go diet that’s way too high in junk and way too low in fresh healthy organic foods, stress and even medications like antibiotics all act like bulls on the loose in a china shop, shattering the balance of your gut flora making you vulnerable to getting sick. The health benefits of probiotics can quickly get you back on track, replenishing the good bacteria in your digestive tract. And what a difference it can make! One UK study I told you about a few years ago, found one of the health benefits of probiotics is that they could boost your immunities by an astounding fifty percent, in some cases. And it almost goes without saying that probiotics are some of the best protection you can get against antibiotic-resistant superbugs. In fact, because of the amazing health benefits of probiotics, I think they are a “must take” supplement that everyone should be including in their daily routine.

    Lower your body fat with belly bugs

    Good belly bugs do a lot more for you than just fight off the common cold or the flu. And we’re learning more about their effects every day. Just last year I told you about an exciting mouse study that revealed a connection between gut flora and diabetes. Researchers found that gut bacteria produce biochemicals and hormones that can literally stop diabetes from ever developing! But as I read the latest issue of the British Journal of Nutrition it wasn’t that diabetes study that came to mind, but rather an earlier one that I had shared with my readers years ago. I’ll get back to that new probiotic research in BJN in just a moment, but first let me refresh your memory about that earlier study. In 2009, Finnish researchers concluded that certain probiotics can help women manage their weight after a pregnancy.  They divided 256 pregnant women into three groups. The first group received dietary counseling and a daily probiotic. The second group got the same counseling, but received a placebo. And the third group didn’t get any dietary counseling, but got the placebo. The women continued with whichever regimen they were assigned to throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding. Once they stopped breastfeeding they were brought in for measurements of weight and waist circumference. The women who took the probiotic came out on top. A year after having their babies they were sporting the best post-baby bodies, with the lowest body fat percentages. And just as exciting, the women taking the probiotic ended up carting around less fat around their midsections than the other two groups.

    Drop more pounds with probiotics

    Now, Canadian researchers have more exciting news for us about probiotic health benefits and weight. And this time it could lead to you taking your belt in a few extra notches. Scientists recruited 125 overweight men and women. For 12 weeks all of the volunteers followed a prescribed weight loss plan. That was followed with another 12 weeks of weight maintenance. During the study half of the group was given a probiotic (in this case from the Lactobacillus rhamnous family), and the other half was given a placebo. The women who got probiotics lost more weight than the placebo takers during the diet phase—an average of 1.8 kg more. That’s almost 4 extra pounds. And during the maintenance period the probiotic takers continued to lose weight, eventually dropping a total of 5.2 kilograms or about 11.5 pound each! In other words, the women in the probiotic group lost twice the weight. And the only difference between the two groups was the probiotic. Unfortunately, the guys in the study didn’t see the same results. The researchers aren’t positive why that is. The study may simply not have gone on long enough, or the dosages might need adjusting for the men. But there’s no reason to think that probiotics can’t have similar effects on weight for men, too.
    For their immune and digestion health benefits alone, probiotics should be on YOUR daily menu. And if they also happen to help you beat the battle of the bulge, that’s just very welcome icing on an already delicious cake.

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