- ABCs of Health – “M” is for Muscles
- Take the oath to quit smoking –
and have the time of your life!
- Tip of the Month – Prevent cake from sticking
- The Herbalist – “Y” is for Yohimbe
ABCs OF HEALTH
“M” is for Muscular System. The muscular system is made up of tissues that work with the skeletal system to control movement of the body. Some muscles-like the ones in you arms and legs-are voluntary, meaning that you decide when to move them. Other muscles, like the ones in your stomach, heart, intestines and other organs, are involuntary. This means that they are controlled automatically by the nervous system and hormones-so often you don’t even realize they’re at work.
The muscular system is divided into three classes:
· Skeletal muscles (*striated involuntary muscle tissue) attached to bones and moves parts of the skeleton.
· Smooth muscles (**non-striated involuntary muscle tissue) forms part of the of walls blood vessels and the walls of hollow viscers such as the stomach, intestines, uterus and bladder.
· Cardiac muscle (*striated involuntary muscle tissue) bulk of the wall of the heart and is considered part of the cardiovascular system.
Muscle tissue constitutes about 40 to 50 per cent of total body weight. There are over 700 voluntary muscles in the body. Most of these are arranged in pairs, and most of them are connected with bones at one or both ends.
There are two classes of muscle tissue:
*Straited or cross-striped-band like sturctures are visible when examined under a microscope.
The cross-striped band structure may look like this: ###
**Non-striated of plain- lacks the band like structures.
The band like structure may look like this: ///
A protein called Myosin is present in the muscle fibers. Myosin makes up about 65% of the total muscle protein. Myosin combined with another muscle protein, Actin, forms the protein, Actomysin. Actomysin, activates the contraction of the muscle. When these two proteins break apart, relaxation of the muscle results.
Muscles react to stimulation which in the normal body is supplied by the nerve force.
Did you know? The eye muscle is the fastest reacting muscle of the whole body. It contracts in less than 1/100th of a second.
Did you know? A smile uses 17 muscles and a frown uses 43 muscles.
TAKE THE OATH TO QUIT SMOKING AND HAVE THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE!
I am writing this article to you, to encourage you to think about tobacco in a different way.
I went to a trade show the other day, and picked up a small brochure that was compiled by the Province of Alberta, small as it seemed in size, the messages inside, were big. Some of the statistical information was eye popping and jaw dropping. One of the pages, I’d like to share with you; stated that an average tobacco user in Alberta smokes 15 cigarettes in a twenty-four hour period. At about five minutes per cigarette, that’s and hour and 15 minutes a day. It adds up to 456 hours or about 19 days per year. So, if you started at age 15 and live to be 70, you’re looking at almost three years of your life staring through a purple haze while inhaling a potentially lethal coctail of carcinogens.
Let’s dissect the cocktail: A cigarette contains much more than just tobacco rolled into a cylinder of paper. Each cigarette contains hundreds of additives – many of them intended to make the cigarette a more effective nicotine delivery system, and therefore more addictive. When these additives are burned, more than 4,000 chemical compounds are created. Some are extremely toxic and about 50 of them are known carcinogens.
If this isn’t enough, to help you consider the possibility of being a non-smoker, let’s continue our conversation.
It’s calculated that, on average, asmoker lose about 15 years of their life. Fifteen years is a long time, especially when you think in terms of a just-born grandchild you won’t see grow into a 15 year-old ninth grader, or 15 years of a retirement you’ve saved long and hard for and won’t get to enjoy.
One way or another, the act of smoking and the results of smoking can add up to steal nearly two decades of your life. Forgetting the rate of interest calculated on your investment, at today’s prices, your nicotine addiction will also consumed a lot of money, enough to send that grandchild you never saw to a very good university and right through their PhD. In Alberta, a pack-a-day smoker spends $3,770. on cigarettes each year, based on an average of $10.35 per pack.
Tobacco is a legal product. That’s true. But it’s the only legal product that causes disease, death and disability among its users when used exactly as intended. Smoking kills more people in Canada than AIDS, motor vehicle collisions, murder, suicide and illicit drug use combined.
Tobacco isn’t fun; it’s toxic. It’s not exciting; it’s deadly. And it’s not glamorous; it’s addictive. That’s the truth – unfiltered.
It’s not just a cigarette; it’s your future.
TAKE THE OATH:
I think that the following committment statement to the possibility of being a non-smoker is a great idea. It is brought to you from the WNTD coalition board website.
I, (your name), have made the decision to stop smoking or other tobacco use on (choose any day). This is a very difficult choice for me to make, but I want to live a tobacco-free life for myself, my family and my friends. I want to be able to breathe easier, walk faster and have whiter teeth. I want to live longer so I can watch my loved ones grow older, and celebrate special times. I want to grant my family’s wish that I give up tobacco, but I also have the same wish for myself . If I mess up and smoke a cigarette or use other tobacco products, I will start all over again the next day until I get it right.
GET started today! GO NATURAL!
TIP OF THE MONTH
To prevent a cake from sticking in the pan after it has been taken out of the oven and turned upside down on a wire rack or board, place a cold, damp cloth on the bottom of the tin for a few minutes.
I promised I would give you some information on a specific herb, it’s origins and uses. I really enjoy this part of our newsletter, as I always learn something new and exciting. This month we will discuss:
Yohimbe OR Yohimbine
Latin Name: Pausinystalia yohimba (Rubiaceae [madder] family)
General Description: Yohimbe ia an evergreen native to Cameroon, Congo, and Gabon in Central Africa. It grows to the height of one hundred and sixty feet (thirty meters) and spans as much as fifty feet (sixteen meters) across and has reddish brown bark, elliptical leaves, and clusters of small yellow flowers. The bark of this tree is used in herbal medicine.
Excellent For: Yohimbe is the original source of the chemical yohimbine, which is used in drugs to treat erectile dysfunction. It is sold under a number of brand names such as Aphrodyne, Yocon, Yohimex, and Yoman. Yohimbe is also found in the South American herb quebracho.
Yohimbe is a remedy for erectile dysfunction as well as an aphrodisiac to be used by both sexes. In traditional African medicine, yohimbe is used both as an aphrodisiac and as a treatment for many skin conditions.
Benefits of yohimbe for specific health conditions include the following:
Impotence and diminished sex drive: For hundreds of years, people in West Africa and the West Indies have used teas of yohimbe bark as a sexual stimulant for men. There have been a number of studies of yohimbe, the active constituent in yohimbe. This compound inhibits a very specific set of nerve cells, known as the alpha-2-adrenergic system, preventing flow of blood out of the penis, yohimbe simulataneously stimulates another group of nerve cells known as cholinergic receptors. These nerves regulate the flow of blood into the penis and the combined effect increases the strength and durations of erections.
Since yohimbe OR yohimbine does not increase testosterone levels, it does not contribute to overgrowth of prostate tissue, male pattern baldness, growth of body hair, aggressive behavior, or any other problems associated with excessive amounts of testosterone. Yohimbe is equally effective in correcting impotence of physical and psychogenic origin, and it is frequently prescribed by doctors for the treatment of impotence caused by diabetes or atherosclerosis.
Yohimbe OR yohimbine is particulary effective for relieving sexual dysfunction caused by treatment with antidepressant drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI’s). These drugs , including fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), and especially paroxetine (Paxil), frequently produce sexual problems in men. In one study, eight of nine men experiencing sexual difficulties after beginning treatment with fluoxetine reported better sexual function after treatment with yohimbe. Yohimbe may also correct sexually depressive side effects of the high blood pressure drug clonidine (Catapres).
CONTRAINDICATIONS: Yohimbe is best used as a tincture. The physician may recommend a prescription form of the active chemicals in this herb, such as Yohimbex (yohimbine hydrochloride). Avoid “yohimbine tablets” as they often do not contain actual yohimbe. Studies have shown that yohimbe is more effective if you are fasting or eating a low-fat diet.
Anxiety, dizziness, heart palpitations, and changes in blood pressure are rare side effects and have been known to occur from a single dose of either yohimbe or yohimbine. Men receiving medical treatment for anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, migraine, or seizure disorders should consult with their physicians before taking this herb.
Because the chemical yohimbine is a possible monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor, you should AVOID the following substances when using this herb: any foods that contain tyramine (chocolate, most French cheeses, liver, organ meats, red wine), nasal decongestants, and weight loss aids containing phenylpropanolamine. Avoid high doses of yohimbe, as this can result in priaprism, a disorder charcterized by painful erections which may require surgery. Yohimbine interacts with an exceptionally high number of over the counter health remedies and presription drugs. DO NOT use yohimbe or yohimbine if you are using sildenafil (Viagra), as this herb has the ability to magnify sildenafil’s effects on the heart. Both Yohimbe and Viagra should be avoided by men you use or carry nitroglycerin tablets for angina or chest pains.
Small doses of yohimbe (less than 10 milligrams) can INDUCE mania in people who have bi-polar depression. Slightly higher doses (15 to 20 milligrams) have been know to provoke severe high blood pressure in people taking an MAO inhibitor for depression. Any person that has a history of psychosis should also avoid yohimbe as it has been known to trigger new episodes of psychotic reaction. Studies have shown that the alkaloid yohimbine in yohimbe can have a positive effect in people who are taking the anti depressant called fluvoxamine (Luvox). People who do not respond to fluvoxamine alone, may try it in combination with yohimbine, which has been known to greatly increase its effectiveness. As Yohimbine has many side effects, it should only be taken with fluvoxamine under the a physician’s supervision.
Remember this, if you are taking antidepressants, blood pressure drugs, or any central nervous system stimulants, never use yohimbe.
This concludes another exciting issue of Natural Health. REMEMBER YOU HAVE TO READ TO WIN!