Can Green Tea Prevent Alzheimer’s?

It’s no secret that I love tea. First thing in the morning there’s nothing like my first sips of spiced black tea.  I drink two cups of the black before switching to green tea for the rest of the day. At night before bed, my favorite is herbal sleepy time tea. Yup. I’m a tea drinker.  And what I love almost as much as the tea, is reading about the health benefits of tea.

I recently read Dr. Ruth Buczynski’s post about Alzheimer’s disease prevention and thought I'd share the information with you. New science showed, at least in a test tube, that chemicals found in green tea and red wine reversed a common event found in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

The key event that leads to Alzheimer’s disease, scientists believe, is the accumulation of amyloid-beta peptides in the brain. These proteins build up, forming toxic balls which attach to nerve cells in the brain, causing them to malfunction.

Researchers hypothesized that changing the shape of these amyloid balls would prevent them from latching onto nerve cells, which would stop the damage.

So they formed amyloid balls in tests tubes, inserted them in human and animal brain cells, and then added extracts from green tea and red wine.

The two extracts they used were epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) from green tea and resveratrol from red wine.

The two extracts did, indeed, re-shape the amyloid balls, preventing them from causing harm to brain cells in the test tubes.

While this is great news, it’s one small study that needs a lot more work before we can know if drinking green tea can prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

It is, however, one more reason for me to continue drinking mine with a big smile!

Best of Health,

Kathi

Is Sodium Laurel Sulfate Bad For Us?

This post is from my original web site posted on April 12, 2011 -

I’ve been seeing a lot of bad press about SLS (Sodium Laurel Sulfate) lately so I decided to complete my own investigation. OK it really is EVERYWHERE. It seems that SLS is a highly effective surfactant used in a variety of task requiring the removal of oily materials and residues, including engine degreasers, floor cleaners, and car wash soaps. They use smaller amounts of it in shampoos, shaving creams, toothpaste, body wash and bubble bath. Hmmmm, it’s prized for its ability to remove oil. I don’t know about you but I’d like to keep the natural oils in my skin! Many body washes and shampoos also contain moisturizers which they say counters the effects of SLS. Bringing me to the rest of the evidence that I found; SLS has also been shown to irritate skin and eyes.

Upon checking the studies, I found several, including a clinical double blind crossover study (very scientific results) which found that people who used the SLS toothpaste had a much higher incidence of canker sores than those who used tooth cleaner without SLS. OK, so toothpaste is used in your mouth – canker sores are in your mouth – why, I ask, is this ingredient still used in almost all of the toothpastes on the market?!

I found only one toothpaste (Burt’s Bees) in any of the major stores that did not contain SLS. The only shampoos I could find without this ingredient were Burt’s Bees, and Avalon. SLS is also known as Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate so when you read the labels, look for either name. I now carry a magnifying glass in my purse, as I’ve looked at thousands of labels in several different stores. Geez! It seems not only food labels need to be read all the time, but anything and everything these days… Me, I’m not going to use anything that contains this chemical anymore; let me know your thoughts please.

One more item to note is that much of the bad press links SLS to cancer but none of the studies that I could find in the US or Australia had found any evidence of a cancer risk. Since none of them were long term, however, as far as I’m concerned, the jury is still out on that one!

Best of Health,

Kathi

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