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Herbs & Plants

Bidens frondosa

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Botanical Name : Bidens frondosa
Family : Asteraceae
Genus : Bidens L.
Kingdom : Plantae
Subkingdom :Tracheobionta
Superdivision : Spermatophyta
Division : Magnoliophyta
Class : Magnoliopsida
Subclass :  Asteridae
Order : Asterales
Species : Bidens frondosa L.

Common Names :Bur Marigold, Devil’s Bootjack, Devil‘s pitchfork,Beggars Tick  Pitchfork Weed, and Sticktight.

Habitat :Native to U.S. Wet ground, ditches, pond margins, streambanks, waste ground, roadsides, railroads

Description:
Bidens frondosa  is an annual herb. It looks similar to a Dahlia plant, up to 2 m tall, usually with reddish stems. Its flowers are yellow, produced in early autumn, followed by numerous seeds with hooked barbs that attach onto passing animals’ fur or clothing or sometimes even skin which allow the seeds to be dispersed widely.

Stems – From fibrous roots, stout, erect, herbaceous, to +/-2m tall, branching, 4-angled (the angles rounded), fluted, essentially glabrous but with a few antrorse hairs in upper portions, typically purple.

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LeavesOpposite, petiolate, trifoliolate. Petiole to +/-5cm long, with an adaxial groove (groove curly pubescent within), the rest of the petiole glabrous or with very sparse short pubescence. Lateral leaflets with petiolules to 5-6mm long, basally oblique. Terminal leaflet with petiolule to 2.5cm long, larger than lateral leaflets, sometimes unequally divided. All leaflets serrate, acuminate, puberulent above, pubescent below, to +10cm long, 4cm broad, light green below, deep dull green above.

Flowers:Bloom during August  to October

Medicinal Uses:
Used in palpitation of the heart, cough, and uterine derangement.  Roots or seeds are also used as an expectorant in throat irritation.  Bidens frondosa in infusion has cured several cases of croup, even where they have been considered beyond aid. A strong infusion of the plant, sweetened with honey, was administered to the children, warm, in doses of a tablespoonful or more every 10 or 15 minutes, until it vomited. A quantity of mucous and membranous shreds were ejected, followed by immediate relief; the children passed into a sleep, from which they awakened perfectly well. In a few hours after the emetic operation of the warm infusion, it acted as a cathartic. The leaves from which the infusion was made, were, at the same time placed in a piece of flannel with some brandy added to them, and laid over the chest and throat. This plan is also beneficial in colds, acute bronchial and laryngeal attach from exposure to cold, etc. An infusion of the seeds formed into a syrup with honey, is useful in whooping-cough.

For urethritis and cystitis that has had several closely spaced occurrences, with antibiotics helping briefly but with the irritation returning shortly after the finish of the regimen try several days of the tea or tincture.  If the pain goes away, continue the tea for a few more days to finish up the membrane healing.  Bidens is also an excellent herb for benign prostatic hypertrophy, usually decreasing the membrane irritability both in the urinary tract and the rectum, and often, over a few weeks of use, noticeably shrinking the prostate and giving its connective tissue better tone.  For this purpose, it combines well with equal parts of white sage.

For elevated uric acid in the blood and a history of gout or urate kidney gravel, Bidens will increase the efficiency of the kidney’s excretion of uric acid from the blood; it will also act as a diuretic to dilute the urine.  It has no effect on the production of uric acid by the body.  Since the mechanism for stimulating the excretion is different from that of Shepherd’s Purse, the two can be combined for increased effects. The herb is active against staph infections, and can be used as a wash, sitz bath, and eyewash.  Its astringency helps take away the inflammation and pain as well. Its astringency and anti-inflammatory effects on the mucus membranes help act as a tonic and preventative for gastritis and ulcers, and diarrhea and ulcerative colitis.  For respiratory infections or irritated membranes due to shouting, smoking, or dust, the tea or tincture acts to soothe the membranes, increase mucus secretions and expectoration, and decrease edema and swelling.  For some asthma aggravated or induced by infection, it may be enough to turn the problem around.  The tea will often help hay fever and sinus headaches from allergies, infections or pollution. For mucus discharges, use the tea two or three times a day for a week.  This includes cloudy urine, vaginal discharges, mucus colitis, mucoid conjunctivitis, and chronic throat and nasal discharges.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Horticulture/Bidens_frondosa
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=BIFR
http://www.missouriplants.com/Yellowopp/Bidens_frondosa_page.html

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Categories
Health Alert

Soda, OJ May Increase Risk of Gout

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According to a new study  drinking too much soda or fruit juice will increase the risk of developing gout, a painful form of arthritis.

Women who drank two cans or more of non-diet soda a day, or 12 ounces or more of orange juice a day, were more than twice as likely to develop gout. Women who drank just one soda or 6-ounce glass of juice per day were at 74 percent and 41 percent greater risk, respectively.

CNN reports:
“The culprit appears to be fructose … [F]ructose increases levels of the chemical uric acid, which causes gout. When uric acid levels in the body get too high, the acid hardens into sharp crystals that are deposited in joints.”

You may click to see :
Soft Drinks Linked to Pancreatic Cancer Risk

Resources:
CNN November 10, 2010
Journal of the American Medical Association November 10, 2010; [Epub ahead of print]

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Categories
News on Health & Science

Vitamin C Intake May Lower Risk of Gout in Men

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 Men with a higher intake of vitamin C appear less likely to develop gout, a painful type of arthritis, according to a study.
……………….CLICK & SEE

Gout is the most common type of inflammatory arthritis in men… The identification of risk factors for gout… is an important first step in the prevention and management of this common and excruciatingly painful condition,” wrote the study’s authors.

Hyon K Choi, then of University of British Columbia, Vancouver, and now of Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues examined the relationship between vitamin C intake and gout in 46,994 men between 1986 and 2006.

Every four years, the men completed a dietary questionnaire, and their vitamin C intake through food and supplements was computed. Every two years, participants reported whether they had been diagnosed with or developed symptoms of gout.

During 20-year follow-up, 1,317 men developed gout. Compared with men who had a vitamin C intake of less than 250mg per day, the relative risk of gout was 17% lower for those with a daily intake of 500 to 999 mg, 34% lower for those with an intake of 1,000 to 1,499mg per day and 45% lower for those with an intake of 1,500mg per day or higher.

Vitamin C may affect re-absorption of uric acid by the kidneys, increase the speed at which the kidneys work or protect against inflammation, all of which may reduce gout risk, a Boston University statement quoted the authors as saying.

Sources:These findings were published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Categories
Yoga

Few Yoga Posters and Their Benefits

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STANDING DEEP BREATH->click to see

Benefits:-

*Expands lungs
*Increases circulation to entire body
*Wakes up body, prepares muscles for action

Decreases suceptibility to lung ailments :-
*Asthma
*Emphysema
*Shortness of breath

2.HALF MOON WITH HAND TO FEET :-

click to see

Benefits:-

Half Moon: –

*Increases vitality
*Gives quick energy

Increases strength and flexibility of muscles:
*rectus abdomimus
*gluteus maximus
*oblique
*deltoid
*trapezeus

Increases spinal flexibility
*Corrects bad posture
*Promotes proper kidney function

Helps cure:
*Elargement of the liver and spleen
*Dyspepsia
*Constipation

Hands to Feet:-

Increases flexibility of
*Spine
*Sciatic nerve
*Tendons and ligaments of legs
*Strengthens hamstrings and calves
*Increases circulation in legs and brain

Increases strength and flexibility of muscles:
*rectus abdomimus
*gluteus maximus
*oblique
*deltoid
*trapezeus

Both:

Firms and trims
*Waistline
*Hips
*Abdomen
*Buttocks
*Thighs

AWKWARD:-

click to see

Benefits:-

Strengthens and firms muscles of :
*Thighs
*Calves
*Hips
*Upper arms

Increases hip flexibility
*Increases blood circulation in
*Knees
*Ankles

Relieves
*rheumatism
*arthritis
*gout in the legs

Helps cure

*slipped disc
*lumbago

Sources:Yoga College Of India

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Categories
Healthy Tips

Simple Therapy for Back Pain

Paracetamol and keeping active are the best cures for back pain, according to Australian researchers who warn that other treatments do not work.

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A Lancet study of 240 back pain sufferers found anti-inflammatory drugs and spinal manipulation did not make any difference to recovery time.

Yet currently, both treatments are recommended in several guidelines.

Experts said patients needed to be reassured that avoiding bed rest and taking paracetamol would work.

Researchers at the University of Sydney assigned patients to receive either an anti-inflammatory drug called diclofenac, a dummy drug, spinal manipulation or fake manipulation therapy.

They had already received simple treatment advice from their GP to keep active, avoid bed rest and take paracetamol for the pain.

The study found no difference in recovery times after 12 weeks in patients who also received diclofenac or spinal manipulation.

Almost all the patients had recovered by the end of the study no matter what treatment they had received.

Adverse effects

Study leader Mark Hancock said there was no clinical benefit from the additional treatments.

And both non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as diclofenac or ibuprofen, and spinal manipulation are associated with adverse effects, he added.

“GPs can manage patients confidently without exposing them to increased risks and costs associated with NSAIDs or spinal manipulative therapy,” he said.

Dr Bart Koes from the Department of General Practice at Erasmus University in the Netherlands, who wrote an accompanying article in The Lancet, said the results were probably applicable to other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen.

He told the BBC: “It is very likely that for many patients with acute low back pain currently treated with NSAIDs and/or spinal manipulation this would not have been needed if adequate first-line treatment with paracetamol and advice and reassurance was given.”

Dr Stuart Derbyshire, senior lecturer in the School of Psychology and expert in pain at the University of Birmingham, also agreed with the findings.

“For most people, providing simple care and advice should guide the patient through their acute phase of pain and allow them to return to normal life when that acute phase is over.”

Back pain is the largest single cause of sickness absence from work.

But Tony Metcalfe, president of the British Chiropractic Association warned the therapy in the study could not be compared with the treatment provided by chiropracters in the UK.

“Spinal manipulation is just part of a package of care offered by BCA chiropractors which also includes lifestyle and posture advice, rehabilitation and specific exercises.”

He added that spinal manipulation therapy is a safe treatment and none of the study participants reported serious adverse reactions.

Nia Taylor, chief executive of BackCare said the key message for people was to keep moving.

“We know that many GPs feel ill-equipped to help patients with low back pain and sometimes people are not given the right advice and reassurance when they first see a GP.”

She added: “In the UK a standard appointment of 10 minutes may not be long enough to give adequate advice and reassurance and convince the patient that a regime of paracetamol and keeping active is enough to ensure recovery.”

You may click to see:->Yoga ‘can help to cut back pain’

>Sitting straight ‘bad for backs’

>Yoga tested as back pain therapy

> Back pain sufferers need to work

>Needles ‘are best for back pain’

>Back pain guide

>Exercises for Back Pain

Sources: BBC NEWS:Nov 9th. ’07

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