Emeralds, Rubies, Minerals and You

More than half of all Americans take Vitamins on a regular basis. But what about minerals?

Did you know that you can arrest a cold just by taking calcium? Cancer cells can die when there is sufficient copper and zinc in the body. Manganese is needed for proper pituitary function. The pituitary is the master gland that controls the hormone system in both men and women. Zinc is vital for prostate function, immune function, and zinc is required for the production of stomach acid used for digestion.

Vitamins are co-factors that allow and assist in all the small processes that contribute to the function of each system in the body. Minerals provide the building blocks of the cells of the body, or act as escorts to other nutrients.

There is an elaborate dance that goes on at a cellular level. The foods we eat, consisting of carbohydrates (starches and sugars, vegetables and fruits), proteins (meats, fish, poultry, eggs), and fats (oils and butter), are broken down by enzymes, assisted by vitamins. Then they are absorbed into the blood system for transportation to areas where they are reconfigured into the various cells and fluids of the body.

The body is a gigantic factory that produces endless products on an hourly basis. Minerals are the building blocks used to form the structure of the cells. But remember that nothing in Nature acts alone. For example, calcium must be in a matrix with other minerals, such as magnesium and phosphorus, so just taking high levels of calcium won’t give you strong bones.

Salt and potassium are minerals used to allow nutrients to pass into cells, and cellular wasteproducts to pass out of cells for elimination. Sulfur is required for detoxification processes in the liver.

Other minerals are needed in trace (tiny) amounts, but pack a big wallop in terms of benefits. Iodine is necessary for thyroid hormone function, chromium helps regulate blood sugar, and iron carries oxygen in red blood cells. Our cells are like fish. They live in a salt sea and they need oxygen to “breathe”.

Vegetables are great sources of minerals, since they draw the minerals up from the soil, but the minerals must be in the soil in the first place. Chemical farming methods that destroy and strip the soil, along with chemical fertilizers, create the giant tasteless veggies that are sold in supermarkets.

All natural forms of foods contain minerals, including dairy, eggs, whole grains, nuts and seeds, meats and fish. Minerals are alkalinizing, but there must be sufficient stomach acid for minerals to be digested and absorbed.

Our modern diets of processed foods and sugar are woefully deficient in minerals. If you are stressed, suffer from weak bones, have difficulty sleeping, losing weight or healing from rashes or acne, you may be mineral deficient.

The quality of the mineral supplement is very important, because some forms of minerals are easy for the body to utilize, and others are not. The best minerals are those found in food sources, so this is another good reason to eat organic food from trusted sources that enrich the soil as it is farmed.

Some minerals will keep the body hydrated, so drinking water alone may not be enough in hot weather. Kids often eat the most depleted diets, when they are desperate for minerals as their bodies are growing. How much ADHD might be mineral deficiency? And a hydrated body is also a younger looking body, because the skin needs the right balance of minerals to be plump and firm.

Let us know if you are concerned about your own mineral balance. We have a zinc test you can take, and there are other ways to check your mineral balance. I have seen minerals make a world of difference when a deficiency is corrected, from improving serious conditions like Celiac (severe allergy to gluten) to improving energy or even lifting depression.

There are more than 4,000 naturally occurring minerals on earth. Some are considered precious gems, such as emeralds and rubies. But none are more valuable than the minerals that you need in your body to restore and maintain healthy body function.

Our dreams and spirits may be not of this world, but our bodies are rooted in the ground. There is a reason we refer to Mother Earth. She nourishes us, when we let her, so we can live the dreams we make.





Feeling Really Good

How many days do you feel really good? Do you skip through your work, juggle your family and friends with ease, and have the time you need to prepare delicious and healthy meals, enjoy some “me” time and then get the deep, refreshing eight hours of sleep you need?

Me, neither. But I do know what to do when I am particularly frazzled or my immune system is under siege.

Our bodies are up against terrible odds for maintaining health and stamina. And when the body is stressed physically, or you are stressed mentally or emotionally, the flood of responses in the body can make you feel overwhelmed. Internal alarm bells sound. Stress hormones like cortisol kick in, blood supply is re-routed, digestion may be affected, and reserves of nutrients are depleted. The result may leave you drained and feeling at the end of your rope. In actuality, you may be having a bio-chemical response, and think that how you feel is the way it has to be.

From the botanical world there are a number of herbs that are real medicine for challenged, stressed bodies. Herbs are the basis for many pharmaceutical drugs. But drugs are made in labs by producing synthetic copies of the active ingredients of plant-based medicines. Our bodies were not designed to easily handle synthetic chemicals. Our bodies were not designed to live off chemical, synthetic foods, either. So, breaking them down so they are not toxic taxes kidneys and livers. And, after a time, a kind of living death occurs.  People on multiple drugs of any kind, and people eating only junk foods, develop bodies that are only half alive. This drags them down mentally and spiritually, also. The answer is never more synthetic chemicals.

We have been led to believe that herbs cannot be as effective as pharmaceutical meds. But many herbs are powerful medicines, if they are prepared correctly, using the strongest parts of the plant, carefully preserving the active constituents. Herbal preparations from Health Food Stores may have some use, but few are potent enough when you need strong medicine.

By test, the MediHerb company makes some of the strongest herbal medicine in the Western world. In Australia, herbal medicine is regulated and must be effective and potent.

If you are feeling less than ideal, give herbs a try for supporting your body. Drugs bypass normal body function. Herbs can help your body truly heal and repair.

Brain fog? Memory issues? Study difficulties. Try Bacopa complex. Bacopa is a brain tonic that assists mental function, concentration, memory, and the mental stress of study and work. It may assist ADHD symptoms, and it appears to protect against brain decline and Alzheimer’s.

Flu is already making the rounds. Andographis Complex is a herbal preparation for acute and sudden onset infections. It helps relieve fever and mucous congestion, and will also boost your natural immunity. You can keep Andographis around to help for times you need extra immune support, or you can take Andographis every day to prevent infections. For flu bugs that linger and move to the chest, Andographis with Congaplex or Immuplex, can pull you out of the illness fast. Add Pneumotrophin if you are prone to chest infections, or have a history of asthma, bronchitis or pneumonia. *

MediHerb also makes some wonderful liquid preparations. They are very potent, and the taste reflects this. If you need a sleep tonic, I can mix California Poppy, with Licorice to improve the taste and support adrenal glands, as well as calm the stomach.

There are some powerful herbs for helping you to handle stress and anxiety and I will write about them in my next blog.

Whole food nutrition is still your most important priority in supporting your health. Adding in herbal medicine will help you support your health at a cellular level so that you can have the kind of bodily well-being it takes to manage your world and enjoy your life.

*There are times when pharmaceutical antibiotics are lifesaving, so any illness should be evaluated on an individual basis. 


Anne Dunev, PhD, C.N. has over twenty years experience helping people feel better by finding the root cause of what is causing their symptoms. Addressing that with the correct natural and nutritional medicine is her strength. With help restoring balance and function, thousands of people are living happier, healthier lives.















Is Herbal Medicine Just a Witch’s Brew?


We have made so many breakthroughs in health technology in the past 100+ years, that it may be difficult to imagine that a simple plant could be as effective as brightly colored pills that come in a child-proof bottle with an official looking printed label.

Many people immediately think “Doctor” at the first sign of an illness. And by that we mean a cold or flu or lump or pain, rash or discomfort. But we are often very unschooled about the warning signals that indicate a body is struggling, signals that may appear long before a problem sends us to the doctor.

Sadly, your MD won’t know anything about the warning signals, either, because a medical education in today’s world means managing and treating disease. It does not involve teaching patients how to manage their optimum health to prevent disease.

Heroism often involves bold actions. Performing surgery and prescribing caustic and potentially dangerous drugs is bold. Working with the body’s own rhythms, processes and innate wisdom may not seem so bold. No blood is shed, there may be no dramatic bedside vigil, no hair falling out, or brave suffering from the after-effects of the treatment.

With plant medicine there is a realignment of the natural order of the body. The internal processes are an intricate dance and it is only when a partner or step is missing that the seeds of illness are sowed.

Whenever any aspect of life goes off the rails, a change must take place. The attitudes, behaviors and negligence which started one on a destructive path must be recognized and set right again. Old habits must be shed and new, smarter actions must be implemented.

It is the same with health and the body. Plant medicine is how the body is formed, from the nutrients received in the womb. Plant medicine is how the body repairs. Surgery can cut out a damaged part, and is sometimes vitally necessary. But surgery does not repair-the body repairs. And drugs only block, suppress or kill functions or organisms. The body does not need drugs to repair or make new cells and chemical drugs also damage, giving the body even more of a repair job to do.

Herbs and plants contain the exact bio-chemical nutrients that are required for real healing to occur. A simple carrot contains over 200 plant-nutrients, and each one has a role to play in the life and wellbeing of our trillions of cells.

We only know some of the reasons that botanical medicine works, because research money is not spent on identifying all the parts. These days when money is spent on plants it is more often to discover how to isolate, create a synthetic copy, and patent the discovery so that the drug can cost $100 a pill instead of the $1.50 the original plant would cost. At least 30% of pharmaceutical drugs are knock-offs of plant medicines.

What we do have is thousands of years of plant medicines being used to help people get well. And since we have billions of people on the Planet, it must have been working fairly well.

So, herbals and botanicals are cheaper, safer, less damaging, and often times more effective than pharmaceutical drugs.

Since much of the information about botanical medicine is not available in the mainstream, it takes a bit of digging and some self-education, as well as the guidance of a professional. You may need your own book of remedies, but you don’t need any witchcraft or mysterious practices. Fortunately plants seemed to have been created to do their job for us. We have an incredible treasure house of real medicines in every farmer’s market, health food store, or supermarket.

It starts with what you eat every day. And there are specific botanicals have known medicinal properties you can tap into. When plants are made into supplements, how they are harvested and how they are prepared determines how effective they are.

Your body should be comfortable for you, and life in your body should be challenging but fun. If your body seems to be holding you back, don’t ignore the warning signs until a small problem becomes a big one. A small goblin is a lot easier to handle than a raging monster.

When Hippocrates said “Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food”, he meant eat your way to wellness.  Those words are more relevant now than they were in 400 BC.  There is enough stress and strife and such an abundance of toxins around us that not eating well is like walking a tightrope with no end in sight. It is not a question of falling off the rope, just a question of how soon.

You can dress up a drug in a fancy costume, but it is still a phony when it comes to repairing the body. Opt for genuine original parts.


Happy Halloween!  

Anne Dunev, PhD, C.N. has over twenty years experience helping people feel better by finding the root cause of what is causing their symptoms. Addressing that with the correct natural and nutritional medicine is her strength. With help restoring balance and function, thousands of people are living happier, healthier lives.