The superbugs are here!!!

Clostridium difficile bacteria. From the Center for Disease Control

Lately I’ve been spotting numerous stories on the mainstream media covering the so-called ‘superbugs’. These are bacterium which are highly or completely resistant to antibiotics.  For example from 3 weeks ago was this story in the Melbourne Age: Deadly superbug hits Australia  And in my article Arming ourselves against the superbugs on Wellbeing.com I talked about a Four Corners TV programme that aired a week ago, entitled Rise of the Superbugs which also raised the same topic.

 

The short and narrow of it all is that western medicine is losing the battle against bacteria. Notice I said “western medicine”. As I’ve highlighted a number of times on this website, essential oils are more than adequate to meet the threat of viruses and bacterium. For example, the article in the Age mentioned Clostridium difficile or C diff. A British study carried out in 2009 found that Geranium and Lemongrass essential oils were effective against C.diff among other antibiotic resistant bacteria.[1]

And yet many medical researchers scratch their heads and talk about going back to a pre-antibiotic age (for what that entails, check out my post Arming ourselves against the superbugs ). Others continue the search for new antibiotics, many of which are toxic in their own right. Not only that, the antibiotics you take for one bug can make you susceptible to other bugs as the article from The Age pointed out:
“…Illness is most likely to occur in people who are taking or have recently taken antibiotics, as they kill naturally protective gut flora…” This is not unlike the effect we get from flu vaccinations. Remember the H1N1 pandemic virus that the world was in a panic about in 2009? Well it was found that people taking their regular seasonal flu vaccinations increased their risk of contracting the more virulent H1N1. So much for providing us with more protection[2]

Essential oils like Lemongrass show great promise as a way of beating back the bugs. Yet you don’t hear this mentioned in the mainstream media do you?

Till next time
Cheers
Anthony

Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.

[1] Doran ML, Morden WE, Dunn K, Edwards-Jones V. Vapour-phase activities of essential oil against antibiotic sensitive and resistant bacteria including MRSA. Lett Appl Microbiolog. 2009 Apr;48(4):387-392.
[2] See my post Getting ready for the next flu season, Part 3

The doubts in many people’s minds over the vaccines and medicines being produced by the pharmaceuticals continues to grow. A lot of people just don’t realize how strong many antibiotics and vaccines actually are. In many cases, the cure can be more damaging than the illness.  Only just recently we saw health authorities in Australia warning doctors not to give the flu vaccine to children under 5 (so much for the idea that vaccines should only be given to the weakest in our society – children and the elderly), after a child fell critically ill and others developed serious adverse reactions after receiving the vaccination in Western Australia. [1]

Meanwhile in the U.S., health authorities recommended that doctors suspend the use of Rotarix, a vaccine used to treat children suffering from rotavirus (a diarrhea inducing infection), after the vaccine was found to be contaminated with DNA from a pig virus. [2] Surprise, Surprise. For more information on the latter, check out the video from the National Vaccine Information Center in the U.S. at the end of this post. You’ll also find a good article on the subject and an interview of Barbara Loe Fisher from NVIC on Dr Mercola’s site. To get access to the article, you’ll be asked to subscribe to Mercola’s newsletter. This is FREE, and believe me well worth it.

Building an ‘arsenal’ of essential oils

Coming back to the title of this post…Last week we discussed Thieves essential oil as a powerful but relatively safe preventative measure against many airborne infections. It’s also worth using if you have already contracted a cold or flu as it will help build your body’s immunity and help it to recover, WITHOUT damaging the good bacteria in your body. On a number of occasions I’ve taken Thieves oil internally, using a gelatin capsule, with anywhere between 4-8 drops of oil.

It is by no means the only essential oil effective against germs and viruses.

Immupower is another essential oil blend that will strengthen your immunity. It contains Cistus, Frankincense, Oregano, Idaho Tansy, Cumin, Clove, Hyssop, Ravensara and Mountain Savory. It can be diffused, directly inhaled or applied to cotton balls (4-8 drops) and placed on vents. It can also be applied topically around the navel, chest, temples, wrists, under the nose or on the Vita Flex points on the feet. When applying topically dilute it with olive oil, 4 drops of olive oil to 1 drop of Immupower.

Inner Defense Softgels, formulated to tackle the largest range of pathogenic organisms, this blend is made up of Thieves, Oregano and Thyme and comes encapsulated in a vegetable capsule. The Essential Oil Desk Reference recommends 1-2 capsules a day. [3]

Ningxia Red juice is a great companion to Inner Defense or any other essential oils. Its constituents include foods that have the highest antioxidants known to Man – blueberries, raspberries, pomegranates, apricots and top of the list, the Ningxia Wolfberries. It also contains Lemon an Orange essential oils. I could write an article or two just on this beverage alone, and we will come back to it in future, but for now let’s just say that it’s a good way to build one’s immunity up on a day to day basis. My own experience with it is that I feel it’s improved my health immeasurably over the past 6 years. Definitely a part of the ‘arsenal.’

RC and Raven. RC is a blend made up of Eucalyptus Globulus, Eucalyptus, Eucalyptus Radiata, Eucalyptus Citriodora, Myrtle, Pine, Spruce, Marjoram, Lavender, Cypress and Peppermint. I mentioned RC and Eucalyptus Radiata in my post last week. Research has found RC to be the most potent oil blend against the MRSA bug (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus). [4] Raven contains the oils Ravensara, Eucalyptus Radiata, Peppermint, Wintergreen and Lemon.

A friend of mine, Artemis, suggests that if you have a cold or flu, you should alternate between these two oils – “RC contains oils that are more antibacterial, whereas Raven contains oils that are more antiviral. However, I have never really noticed this. What I do notice is that RC decongests (so it’s great to use when we are all stuffed up), whereas Raven does the opposite. So if my nose is running profusely and won’t stop (the proverbial “dripping tap”), then Raven is the oil that I would use. I put it around my throat area, as it’s a little stronger to use on sensitive skin like the face. And normally I’d apply these oils several times a day as needed. I have also observed that I can put RC on just before I go to bed and it won’t affect my sleep, whereas Raven keeps me awake so one of the oils in it must be a stimulant ” (Most likely the peppermint and lemon – Anthony).[5]

Myrtle, is another great oil listed by Artemis for the cold and flu season, particularly those nasty coughs – “I first fell in love with Myrtle when I realized its benefits to coughing. I have used it on many people during coughing fits (or that nasty tickle in the throat that leads to hacking coughing at the tail end of a cold). In virtually everyone I’ve used it on, the coughing has stopped pretty much instantly, and they had minimal coughing for the next couple of hours.  When Noel’s son Robin was sick one day and we had no RC on hand, Noel gave him some Myrtle. He rubbed it on his chest, and voila! 4 hours later he was feeling well enough to return to work. It’s become one of Robin’s favourite oils. Then I tried Myrtle on a lady at one of my playshops, and she was experiencing wheezing in her chest. And voila! Wheezing stopped.” [6]

Purification is an oil blend I’ve mentioned in previous articles with reference to insect bites. But it’s also good for cleaning the air and keeping airborne pathogens away. Aside from diffusing it, I would try rubbing it on the soles of my feet. It contains Citronella, Lemongrass, Lavandin, Rosemary, Melaleuca and Myrtle. Some very powerful oils in this blend.

Peppermint and Lemon are two oils that are a ‘must have’ in the anti-cold/flu arsenal. Peppermint is great for when you get that headache. I just rub 2-3 drops around the base of neck. And for when I get that tickle and bit of phlegm in the back of my throat, (that to me signal the onset of a cold or flu) I put 3 drops of Peppermint oil and 3 drops of Lemon oil (and if I have Eucalyptus Radiata on hand, 3 drops of that as well) on a spoon and down the hatch. It sure gives you Zing, but for the germs it’s the equivalent of a knockout punch. {:-)

This is by no means an exhaustive list. There are other oils which are also quite powerful against infections. Lemongrass, I’ve mentioned on a previous occasion as being effective against MRSA, while Rosemary is antiseptic, antifungal and antimicrobial. Eucalyptus Radiata, which I mentioned briefly, is anti-infectious, antiviral, antibacterial and an expectorant. I hope you’ve found this list useful for building your own ‘armory’. If you would like any more information on any of these, feel free to contact us.

Till next time

Cheers

Anthony

 

YouTube Preview Image

Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not
constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.

[1] Calls for calm amid flu jab scare, ABC News, Sat Apr 24th

[2] CNN, March 22 2010

[3] Essential Oils Desk Reference, 4th Edition, Essential Science Publishing, Sept 2007, p192

[4] Inhibition of Methicillin-Resistant Staphyloccus Aureus (MRSA) by Essential Oils. Author: S.C. Chao,  D.G. Young, C.J. Oberg and K Nakaoka, Journal: Flavour and Fragrance Journal, 23 (444-449) (2008)

[5] Artemis’ oils bulletin: RC and other oils for the cold and flu season, 6th July 2008

[6] Ibid

A story I read just recently in Mike Adams’ Natural News [1] , made me think that now might be a good time to look at preventive measures for the upcoming flu season. I appreciate this might affect the southern hemisphere more than the north, who are moving into spring, however the subject matter ultimately affects everyone at one time or another.

Mike Adams was  discussing a recent study published in PLoS Medicine: Does Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Increase the Risk of Illness with the 2009 A/H1N1 Pandemic Virus?

Viboud C, Simonsen L (2010) Does Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Increase the Risk of Illness with the 2009 A/H1N1 Pandemic Virus? PLoS Med 7(4): e1000259. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000259 [2]

The result of this study doesn’t surprise me and confirms how I feel about vaccines and most pharmaceuticals in general. I agree with Mike Adams’ conclusion: the vaccine manufacturing business is exactly that – a business. Curing customers isn’t ultimately good business for the pharmaceuticals, who want repeat customers. If vaccines actually damage your immune system, then this achieves their aims. And this latest study appears to confirm that.

The study found ” that receipt of TIV in the previous season (autumn 2008) appeared to increase the risk of  pH1N1 illness by 1.03- to 2.74-fold, even after adjustment for co morbidities, age, and geography”.  In other words, if you were vaccinated for the previous seasonal flu, you were 103-274% more likely to cop the H1N1 flu than if you had avoided the seasonal flu shot to begin with.

Alternatives

Drug manufacturers are forever creating new drugs to combat bacteria, but the fact remains, the bugs keep developing immunity to our antibiotics. One of the strongest bacteria to emerge in our day – MRSA – is so named because it is resistant to one of the most powerful antibiotics on the market. The Staphylococcus Aureus is a common enough and harmless bacteria, however its Methicillin resistant variant is not so benign. The antibiotic Methicillin itself can be lethal to the patient using it. So imagine if they develop an antibiotic stronger than Methicillin to combat the MRSA.

At this point in time, no virus or bacteria has been found, that can develop immunity to an essential oil. [3]

There is couple of reasons for this:

  1. Essential oils are comprised of hundreds of compounds, while laboratory-produced medicines usually consist of only one or two active ingredients. Viruses and bacteria have no difficulty in breaking the codes of a man-made medicine than in attempting to form a resistance to an essential oil.
  2. Furthermore, essential oils are never twice the same while every batch of a pharmaceutical drug is always the same, reproduced with laboratory exactness. Hence, with repeated exposure to the same identical drug, it’s easier for viruses and bacteria to work out its toxic properties and develop a resistance. Essential oils on the other hand are never identical from year to year. Even if bugs did work out oil’s toxic components, they would have to start all over with the next crop.

Some of the most potent essential oils in fighting and resisting infection are oils like Clove, Lavender, Rosemary, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, and Lemongrass. When a number of these oils are blended together, you end up with an essential oil blend that is more potent than the sum of its parts. In our next post we’ll look at one oil blend that is so potent against viral and bacterial infections, it was used to great effect in the middle Ages to protect people against the Plague – Thieves.

Till Next Time

Cheers

Anthony

Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not
constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.

[1]Seasonal flu vaccines increase risk of pandemic H1N1 flu, stunned scientists discover” By Mike Adams, Natural News.com,Thursday, April 08, 2010

[2] Does Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Increase the Risk of Illness with the 2009 A/H1N1 Pandemic Virus? Cécile Viboud, Lone Simonsen PLoS Med 7(4): e1000259. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000259

[3] The Raindrop Messenger, Official newsletter of C.A.R.E. (Center for Aromatherapy Research and Education) Vol 8, No 1 Jan-Feb 2010. To subscribe

Fish Oils for Mental Illness

By now, most of us have probably heard of the benefits of fish oil in our diets – the Omega 3 in particular. Most of us are also probably aware that mental illness is a major health issue in our society, next to such things as Cancer and Heart disease.

A new study from a team of researchers from Australia, Switzerland and Austria, and published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, has revealed that fish oil supplements are very effective against mental illness.[1]

The randomized, placebo controlled study involved 81 participants that were considered to be at high risk for psychosis. Half the participants were given 1/2g of fish oil supplements each day for 12 weeks and the other half placebo supplements. Only 2 people in the fish oil group developed psychosis as against 11 in the placebo group.

The study is certainly small but one hopes that there will now be follow up studies. If fish oils supplements become widely acceptable in the medical/psychiatric field, it will certainly be preferable to the antipsychotic drugs that bring with them a whole range of side effects and problems.[2]

Aside from mental illness, Omega 3 fatty acids (or PUFA’s they’re sometimes known) have been shown to support cardiovascular, joint, eye and brain health and in reducing the risk of heart disease & stroke, pulmonary disease, autoimmune diseases, crohn’s disease, hypertension, and ADD/ADHD. Low Omega 3 levels on the other hand have been associated with depression, dementia, memory loss, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Selecting the right fish oil supplements is equally important. You need to make sure your supplements are free from heavy metals, pesticides and other toxic residues.

Three years ago Young Living (YL) developed a fish oil supplement that combines the benefits of fish oil with the effectiveness of essential oils. Indeed YL were the first producers of essential oils to combine essential oils with food and food supplements. Omega Blue stands out way above many fish oil supplements in the market place for the following reasons:

  • It’s sourced from wild-harvested fish (sardines, mackerel and anchovies) and YL’s molecular distillation process pulls out any toxicity that is present.
  • The essential oils added increase the bioavailability of the nutrients by 10 times
  • Omega Blue fish supplements use an enteric coating which ensures that it is absorbed through the intestines, rather than through the stomach. Nutrients are thus absorbed into the body more easily. It also guarantees that you don’t get any “fish” taste or fish breath after taking the capsule.
  • Research has shown that many fish oils begin to oxidise within days of being packaged, even though their expiry date is 3 years away.[3] Oxidised fats produce free radicals, which in turn promote disease and aging. The essential oils added to Omega Blue protect from oxidation.
  • The essential oils also lend their own benefits. For example:
    • Clove oil, German Chamomile, Myrhh and Lemongrass are anti-inflammatory.
    • Clove oil is the highest recorded antioxidant as measured on the ORAC scale.
    • Eugenol, one of the constituents of Clove oil protects the neurons in the brain from a lack of oxygen.
    • Myrrh oil increases digestion, while Lemongrass oil lowers cholesterol and offers cardiovascular support.

Till next time,

Cheers

Anthony

Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not
constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.

[1]Long-Chain Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Indicated Prevention of Psychotic Disorders  http://archpsyc.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/abstract/67/2/146

[2] BBC: Fish oil supplements beat psychotic mental illness.  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8490937.stm

[3] Oxidised fish oils on market may harm consumer, warns researcher http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research/Oxidised-fish-oils-on-market-may-harm-consumer-warns-researcher

What essential oils do I take to work?

For a long time I’ve been in the habit of carrying a small case of essential oils, in my briefcase, going to work each day. While the contents have varied somewhat over time, there are a number oils I like to have on hand.

Peppermint. Peppermint is, if not one of my favourite essential oils, then certainly the most used.  For me it’s come in handy for two reasons. If I’ve gone out to lunch with friends and perhaps have eaten a little too much or the wrong combination of foods and developed a tummy ache, this is the oil for me. I’ll rub 2-3 drops on my stomach area and within less than a minute, I get relief. The other alternative is to put the drops in some water and drink it.

The other way it’s handy is as a relief for headaches, particularly those that might be caused by back ache or tension. I’ll rub it on the back of the neck and again it provides me with relief. You just have to be careful that you don’t get it in your eyes, so I suggest washing your hands very well after using it.

Lavender. This is also a good one for headaches, particularly those that are cold related. The incidence of headaches for me is pretty low, so I haven’t used this one as much. I simply apply 2-3 drops on the temple and forehead.

Purification. This one is a Young Living blend (and all the oils I’ve mentioned up to now are YL – refer to my About page for the Whys) that consists of Citronella, Lemongrass, Rosemary, Melaleuca, Lavandin and Myrtle.  Incidentally, in a series of recent lab tests at Weber State University in Utah, Lemongrass was found to be the most effective essential oil against the MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) bug. (1)

Purification is a good oil to have around in the event of cuts, scrapes and insect bites. In this case I apply it directly to the wound, again 2-3 drops depending on the wound. It’s also useful in cleaning the air. So here, a person could either use it in a diffuser or put it on cotton balls and leave these in desks, drawers, rubbish tins or vents.

Thieves Waterless Hand Purifier. I could write a whole article just on the essential oil blend – Thieves – that is the main ingredient in this product (watch this space in the near future). I would regard Thieves as one of the most powerful oils in my arsenal. Thieves is made up of the oils of Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Radiata and Rosemary. Thieves has powerful anti-fungal, anti-microbial and anti-viral properties. Working on the desk of a busy public library, handling hundreds of books and items each day, this waterless hand purifier comes in very handy. We unfortunately get back some pretty grotty books. No need to rush off to the bathroom sink each time. Just a drop or two of the Thieves hand purifier in the hands, rub them well and I’ve diminished significantly the possibility of infection as well as having my hands smell great.

Valor Essential oil roll-on. I work in an environment that’s not well air conditioned, so I can get pretty hot and perspired after shifting books or working with computer cabling. And I don’t have the luxury of going for a shower whenever I want. This is where the Valor roll-on comes in handy. Valor is an essential oil blend made up of the essential oils Spruce, Rosewood, Blue Tansy and Frankincense. It smells great!

I can either rub a little on my wrists, neck and collarbone, or as I’ve done a number of times, I rub a little on my hands and then rub my hands in the armpit area. There’s a lot more that can be said about Valor and I will come back to it in future. What I’ll say for now is that it’s a very potent oil blend that serves as more than just an aftershave or deodorant. Having said that, it makes a fabulously safe alternative to a lot of the ‘products’ people put on their bodies as deodorants, colognes and perfumes, but which is loaded with chemicals and what-not. Till next time.

Cheers,

Anthony

Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not
constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.

(1) The scientific data was published in an article entitled, Inhibition of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) by Essential Oils in the Flavour and Fragrance Journal, 23:444-449, (2008).