Monday, March 24, 2008

Aromatherapy solution for Depression..

When artiste Leslie Cheung committed suicide, he left behind a trail of speculations amidst sighs of regret. News of his "depression" arose. The realisation that even a superstar could be plagued by such problems abruptly heightened the "suffering index" of ordinary folks. Incessant natural disasters, bleak economic outlook, fear of unemployment, adolescent worries about schoolwork?these pressures from life make "depression" one of the most serious civilised diseases of this century.

"Insomnia" is also a common problem faced by people living in modern society. According to a survey conducted by the American National Sleep Foundation, three in every four women aged between 30 to 60 years are suffering from "insomnia". "Insomnia" has already become an epidemic disease for females. The Shanghai Chinese Medical Hospital has been conducting surveys on epidemic diseases since 1996 and results indicate that 15% of Shanghai residents have serious insomnia symptoms.

These figures are concrete proof that there is a huge market demand for products that relieve stress and insomnia. The beneficial effects of aromatherapy in soothing emotions and enhancing sleep quality have long been deep-rooted in the minds of ordinary folks and have been proven in numerous clinical literatures. These constitute an important reason for the active development of "psycho aromatherapy" products, as undertaken by Yangsen Biotechnology Institute in close collaboration with Bel'Air.

Depression: Disease of the Century, Alongside Cancer and Aids Unless patients commit suicide, depression is usually not life threatening. However, one's quality of life will suffer a drastic decline and loved ones will also be deeply affected. According to a survey report by the World Health Organisation (WHO), 3% of the world population are suffering from depression at present. The report also predicted that Depression, Aids and Cancer will become the three main diseases of the 21st century. By 2020, depression will only be secondary to cancer in causing the inability to function normally and even death.

To most people, perhaps the degree of nervousness and anxiety has not reached the stage where they must receive medical treatment and advice. However, it is an undeniable fact that long-term nervousness and anxiety will affect the balance between one's body and mind. Taipei Lian-An Clinic conducted a survey of 1164 white-collar workers who went there for health examinations. Results showed that two thirds of the patients felt worn out by life and close to 40% of the patients needed to receive professional psychiatric treatments due to depression and anxiety. Symptoms of nervousness and anxiety derived from work-related stress have reached the scale of an epidemic in America. 43% of adults feel threatened by it. Absenteeism, falling productivity and increase of medical bills, which can come about as a result of occupational nervousness, are predicted to cost the American economy several hundred billion US dollars.

Understanding the Importance of Sleep

"When I am sleeping, my mind is resting!" Many people have this misconception. However, the likely truth is that when you sleeping, only the rest of your body is resting. Your brain continues to be active as it labours on making preparations for the next day. Sleep is as essential to a healthy body and mind as food. If you have insufficient hours of sleep or lack quality sleep, your body will continuously accumulate "sleep debts" and you will have to pay for it one day. Do also note that rest is not a substitute for sleep!

Another misconception is that most sleep disorders can heal without medication. Many people who are plagued by sleep disorders do not realise that this is actually a disease, much less understand that it can be healed. Methods of healing include medication, operation, psychiatric treatment and combined therapy. Sleep disorders will not disappear naturally. If allowed to develop at its own pace, it would only worsen one's quality of life, damage interpersonal relationships, affect one's conduct and result in huge negative impacts, to the extent of causing accidents or deaths.

Psycho Aromatherapy

To examine the mental effects of "aromatic essential oils", results can be basically categorised into the psychological effects deriving from aromatic scents and the physiological effects deriving from the impact of essential oil molecules on the central nervous system. Both psychological and physiological effects can cause changes in the central nervous system, internal secretion system and immunity system, hence giving rise to complex biological consequences.

Modern "psycho aromatherapy" utilises analytical tools like Micro Positron Emission Tomography (PET), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Electroencephalogram (EEG), Magnetoencephalography (MEG) and Cerebral Blood Flow (CBF) to research on the direct impact of aroma on the central nervous system. It can be used to examine the effects of aromatherapy on health problems such as insomnia, depression, nervousness, mental fragility, headaches, fatigue, dizziness and memory deterioration.

According to popular understanding, aromatherapy can indeed achieve the effect of soothing emotions. People's interest in aromatherapy is aroused when certain essential oils can genuinely alleviate the conditions of some illnesses which are hard to cure even in hospitals, such as mental fragility, depression and insomnia. According to clinical studies, besides using medication and supportive psychiatric therapy to cure depression, many doctors also encourage patients to adopt the method of aromatherapy. Both consumers and professional medical practitioners recognise the positive effects of essential oils for stress relief.

Research and Development of Nepenthe Bio-tech Pure Essential Oil It was 5pm in the afternoon. In a resting house in Taipei suburb, about 40 old folks were leisurely enjoying the uplifting scents of Bel'Air's Nepenthe essential oil. They seemed at ease with themselves, immersed in a state of peace and tranquility away from the hassles of the world. This is the result of a test on Nepenthe essential oil, conducted over a week by a research team from Yangsen Biotechnology Institute to examine the therapeutic effects of aromatherapy in soothing the depressive emotions of old folks.

The research team members applied a depression scale to evaluate the subject's level of depression. During the research process, the subject inhaled the aroma for 4 hours daily. Seven days later, the depression scale was again used to evaluate the subject's level of depression. At the same time, the heart rate variability (HRV) was also measured to evaluate the subject's sympathetic nerve activity and parasympathetic nerve activity. Earlier research has already shown that the higher the marks on the depression scale, the higher the level of sympathetic activity and the lower the level of parasympathetic activity. From the table below, we can see that after seven days of aromatherapy with "Nepenthe Bio-tech Pure Essential Oil", the depression score has evidently decreased and sympathetic activity, which stands for anxiety, has declined dramatically. On the other hand, parasympathetic activity, which stands for calmness, has increased greatly.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Home Remedies for UNDERWEIGHT

Being thin or underweight like being overweight, is a relative term, being based on the ideal weight for a given height built, and sex. A person can be regarded as moderately underweight if he or she weighs ten per cent below the ideal body weight and markedly so if the weight is twenty per cent below the ideal.

Underweight symptoms
Fatigue feeling

They often feel easily fatigued, have poor physical stamina and low resistance to infection.

Underweight causes
Thinness due to an inadequate caloric intake
Thinness due to an inadequate caloric intake is a serious condition, especially in young people. Diseases like tuberculosis, respiratory disorders, pneumonia, circulatory diseases like heart disorders, cerebral haemorrhage, nephritis, typhoid fever, and cancer are quite common among them.

Inadequate nutrition or bad eating habits
Thinness may be due to inadequate nutrition or excessive bodily activity, or both. Emotional factors or bad eating habits such as skipping meals, small meals, habitual fasting, and inadequate exercise can also cause it

Inadequate digestion, metabolic disturbances and disorders
Other factors include inadequate digestion and absorption of food due to a wrong dietary pattern for a particular metabolism, metabolic disturbances such as an overactive thyroid, and hereditary tendencies. Disorders such as chronic dyspepsia, chronic diarrhoea, presence of intestinal worms, liver disorders, diabetes mellitus, insomnia, constipation, and sexual disorders can also lead to thinness.

Home Remedies for Underweight

Underweight treatment using Musk Melon (Qarbooza)
Musk melon is one of the most effective home remedies for thinness. If the melon cure is properly carried out, a rapid gain in weight can usually be achieved. In this mode of treatment, only musk melons are taken three times during the day for forty days or more. In the beginning, only three kilograms of melons are taken daily for three days. Then the quantity is increased by one kilogram daily till it is sufficient to appease the hunger. Only the sweet and fresh fruits of the best variety are used in the treatment.

Underweight treatment using Mango-Milk Cure
The mango-milk cure is also an ideal treatment for thinness. For this mode of treatment, ripe and sweet mangoes should always be selected. They should be taken thrice a day-morning, afternoon, and evening. Two medium sized mangoes should be taken first and then followed by a glass of milk. Mango is rich in sugar but deficient in protein. On the other hand, milk is rich in protein but deficient in sugar. The deficiency of one is made up by the other. Mango thus combines very well with milk and an exclusive mango-milk diet taken for at least one month, will lead to improvement in health and vigour and gain in weight

Underweight treatment using Milk Cure
An exclusive milk diet for rapid gain of weight has been advocated by some nature cure practitioners. At the beginning of this mode of treatment, the patient should fast for three days on warm water and lime juice so as to cleanse the system. Thereafter, he should have a glass of milk every two hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the first day, a glass every hour and half the next day, and a glass every hour the third day. Then the quantity of milk should be gradually increased so as to take a glass every half an hour from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., if such a quantity can be tolerated fairly comfortably

Underweight treatment using Figs (Anjeer)
Figs are an excellent remedy for increasing weight in case of thinness. The high percentage of the rapidly assimilable sugar in this fruit make it a strengthening and fattening food. Three dried figs soaked in water should be taken twice daily
Underweight treatment using Raisins (Kishmish)
Raisins are a good food for those who wish to gain weight. Thirty grams a day may be taken for this purpose

Underweight treatment using Nutrients
Nutrients which help to keep the nerves relaxed are of utmost importance as nervousness causes all the muscles to become tense, and the energy which goes into the tensing wastefully uses up a great deal of food. Although all vitamins and minerals are required for relaxation, the most important once are vitamin D and B6,calcium, and magnesium. The richest sources of vitamin D are milk, cod-liver oil, and rays of the sun. Calcium is supplied by milk and yoghurt. Magnesium can be obtained from green leafy vegetables such as spinach, parsley, turnip, radish, and beet tops. These vegetables should, preferably, be taken in salad form or should be lightly cooked.

Underweight diet
Diet plays an important role in building up health for gaining weight. Underweight persons should eat frequent small meals as they tend to feel full quickly. The weight-building quality of a food is measured by the number of calories it contains. To gain weight the diet should include more calories than are used in daily activities so as to allow the excess to be stored as body fat. The allowance of 500 calories in excess of the daily average needs is estimated to provide for a weight gain of half a kilogram weekly
Food to avoid when you are underweight
All refined foods such as products containing white flour and sugar should be avoided, as they destroy health

Other Underweight treatment
Exercises and Yoga
Regular exercises like walking, dancing, yoga, meditation, and massage are also important as they serve as relaxants, reduce stress, and induce good sleep. Yogasanas which are especially helpful are sarvangasana, halasana, and matsyasana.

Fight Depression with Omega 3 Fatty Acids

A new research study has again shown that a diet rich in omega3 fatty acids can effectively treat and prevent depression and other mental disorders.

The research, published in the February issue of the journal, Biological Psychiatry, has actually shown that omega3 fatty acids and foods that are high in uridine were as good as (and often better than) anti-depressant drugs in reducing the symptoms of depression. The unpredictability of anti-depressant drugs has caused much concern for many years, with a large number of doctors and patients questioning their use, and raising concerns about the negative (rather than positive) effects they can cause.

Recently, both Merck and GlaxoSmithKlein (manufacturers of Paxil and Vioxx respectively) have been taken to court over withheld research results which show that antidepressant drugs cause children to behave violently and can increase the likelihood of suicide by up to 400%.

This has resulted in the FDA in the US announcing that it will ensure that all anti-depressant drugs manufacturers must include a 'black box' warning label on all antidepressant medications. The European Union has also warned its member states about the risks associated to antidepressant drugs, particularly since the Journal of the American Medical Association published a review of the 102 clinical trials on anti-depressants which showed that results are frequently misreported or hidden.

Based upon this, and other related studies, there now seems to be a large amount of solid, trustworthy evidence to suggest that there is no longer a need to rely upon drugs to treat and prevent depression.

Omega3 Fatty Acids Can Help Prevent and Treat Depression

A high-profile article in 1999, published by the Harvard University, put omega3 in the mental health limelight by offering solid proof that fish oil could significantly reduce the effects of bipolar disorders.

Individuals who had been condemned to years of high-strength, high-risk pharmaceuticals began to switch to courses of omega3 supplementation. This article built upon the findings of a study published in The Lancet which correlated the results of an earlier cross-cultural study into the incidence of depression across ten nations with the consumption of omega3 fatty acids derived from fish. This study showed a strong correlation between the nations where depression was far less frequent and the average intake of omega3 fatty acids.

These findings were then further strengthened by a 2003 research study which was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry. These results, which compared similar cross-national epidemiological data, offered further proof to strengthen the link between omega3 fatty acids and their role in treating and preventing depression and other mental disorders.

Omega3 is an essential fatty acid which is prevalent in flaxseed, pumpkin seed, almonds, many green leafy vegetables and walnuts (more on omega3 fatty acids).

They are known as Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) as the body is not able to synthesise them by itself and relies upon food sources and their health benefits include increased energy, protection against degenerative diseases, a strengthened immune system, and increased brain function.

DHA (docosahexaenoic acid -- a component of omega-3 fatty acids) is essential for developing and protecting the gray matter of the human brain and the retina of the eye, and is used in every cell in the body. Research has shown it to be vital at every stage of human life, beginning in utero.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids and Depression

Many researchers have correlated the decrease in our daily diets of omega3's and the increase in degenerative diseases (such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases) and mental illness.

Researchers such as Udo Erasmus cite the huge increase in the intake of highly refined saturated fats and a huge decrease in the consumption of essential fatty acids as the defining factor in the corresponding rise in the number of people diagnosed with degenerative diseases and mental illness over the past century.

Similarly, Dr Joseph Hibbeln of the National Institute for Health in the US, states that: "In the last century, [Western] diets have radically changed and we eat grossly fewer omega-3 fatty acids now. We also know that rates of depression have radically increased by perhaps a hundred-fold." As noted above, the correlation between omega3 fatty acids (more specifically, DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid, EPA) and depression and other mental disorders has been discovered has in dozens of well respected research studies.

Further evidence can be seen in a Finnish study published in the Journal Psyciatric Services during 2001. This large scale study revealed that there was a significantly reduced chance of developing depressive symptoms if individuals consume fish rich in omega3 fatty acids on a regular basis.

A further study in 2003 which was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrated that in elderly patients suffering with depression, there were significantly lower levels of omega3 fatty acids.

Omega Oil is a free, non-commercial resource for those looking to learn about the outstanding health benefits of the omega 3 and omega 6 essential fatty acids

Saturday, March 22, 2008

How to fight against Depression...

Depression can have many, many faces. If you are not aware of your feelings and emotions on a daily basis then it can creep up on you and cause misery in your life when you least expect it.

We get sad when we fail in our exams, when we're rejected by the person we love, or when someone very close to us passes away. Depression, however, could be more fatal than just plain sadness. It could cause life-long consequences that could ruin your self-esteem, your health, and your well-being.

Here are some excellent tips for conquering depression and to help you get the most enjoyment out of your daily activities.

1. Be Certain of Your Future Goals

If you have no goals then the future will seem uncertain. This will create anxiety and just add to the problem. Having goals gives you something to look forward to in life. They drive us on and create a desire for life. Keep your focus on your goals.

2. Keep a Journal.

Every day, write down your deepest feelings. Say what you want to say. Get it out of your head and onto paper. Don't hold back. This is a very therapeutic way to pull yourself back up. Keep writing down whatever comes into your mind and very soon you will feel your mood start to improve. Done properly, this method can create dramatic changes in emotion.

3. Get Enough Light and Sunshine.

Lack of exposure to sunlight is responsible for the secretion of the hormone melatonin, which could trigger a dispirited mood and a lethargic condition.

Melatonin is only produced in the dark. It lowers the body temperature and makes you feel sluggish. If you are always cooped up in your room (with the curtains closed), it would be difficult to restrain yourself from staying in bed.

This is the reason why many people are suffering from depression much more often in winter than in the other seasons. It's because the nights are longer.

If you can't go outdoors to get some sunshine, you can always lighten up your room with brighter lights. Have lunch outside the office. Take frequent walks instead of driving your car over short distances.

4. Keep Busy. Get Inspired About Something.

It's a fact that people are happiest when they are producing something. Do some activity that you have always wanted to do. Live a life full of inspired activities.

What is it that you really love to do? What are you passionate about?. Taking a nice walk in the park, playing sports, reading books, or listening to some soothing music.

5. Make Some Time For Yourself.

Yes its True.

Listen to soothing music. Soak in a nice warm bath. Ask one of your close friends to massage you. Take a break from your stressful workload and spend the day just goofing around. In other words, have fun.

6. Eat Healthy and Exercise Regularly.

Avoid foods with lots of sugar, caffeine, or alcohol. Sugar and caffeine may give you a brief moment of energy; but they would later bring about anxiety , tension, and internal problems. Alcohol is a depressant. Many people drink alcohol to "forget their problems." It never works. The ONLY way to handle problems is to confront them. Describe your problems in your journal fully. If you really face them the right solution might appear.

Exercising regularly is a vital depression buster.

7. Increase Your Social Life.

Your friends are there to give you moral support. Spending time and engaging in worthwhile activities with your friends could give you a very satisfying feeling. Nothing feels better than having group support.

Get intimate. Establish close ties with your family and friends. The love you get from others is very satisfying. In times of depression having stable influences around you is comforting.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Whole Grape (Vitis vinifera)

Grape (Whole) Benefits
Grape seed extract is one of the most potent antioxidants found in nature. Grape seed extract contains a special class of water-soluble bioflavonoids called proanthocyanidins. Studies have shown the antioxidant activity of these specific bioflavonoids is 20 to 50 times greater than Beta-Carotene or Vitamins C and E at scavenging specific free radicals. By nourishing blood vessel walls and performing other renewing functions, grape seed extract helps promote healthy blood pressure levels, heart health, and a proper inflammation response.

Grape seed extract is derived from the small seeds (and occasionally the skins) of red grapes. Used extensively in Europe, grape seed extract is rich in flavonoids, phytochemicals that have antioxidant properties some consider even greater than vitamin C and vitamin E. Antioxidants are believed to prevent and control numerous ailments by safeguarding cells against the ravages of unstable oxygen molecules called free radicals. Grape seed has also been used as a dietary source of essential fatty acids and tocopherols and as an antioxidant.

The most valuable flavonoids in grape seed extract are procyanidolic oligomers (also known as proanthocyanidins), commonly called PCOs. Beyond their antioxidant powers, PCOs are thought to improve blood circulation and help strengthen blood vessels. These actions benefit people with heart disease and cancer.

Studies have shown that PCOs in grape seed extract are as much as 50 times more potent than those in Vitamin E and up to 20 times more potent than PCOs in Vitamin C.

Latin Name: Vitis vinifera

Common Names: Asma, Auzum, Domestic Grape, European Grape, Grape, Grape Vine, I'Nab, P'U T'Ao, P'U T'Ao Chiu, Raisin, Roseinekaerne, Tray, Vid, Vigne, Vine, Vite

Properties: Anti-ageing, anti-allergenic, anti-allergic, anti-atherogenic, anti-bacterial, anti-cancer, anti-carcinogenic, anti-cavity, Anti-enzyme, anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory, anti-mutagenic, anti-oxidant, anti-tumour, anti-viral, capillary protective, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, vasodilatory.

Indicated for:
Ageing, allergies, arm and leg numbness or tingling, arteriosclerosis, arthritis, allergies, blood vessel damage, cataracts, cancer prevention, cataracts, diabetes, eczema, endemtriosis, eye-strain, fibromyalgia, gum disease, haemorrhoids, hair problems, hardening of arteries, hayfever, heart disease prevention, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, HIV, hives, impotence, improving circulation, leg cramps, lupus, macular degeneration, preventing degenerative diseases, promoting healing, psoriasis, retinopathy, ulcers, varicose veins.

European doctors prescribe PCO-containing drugs for various vascular (vessel) disorders that are likely to benefit from increased blood flow, such as diabetes, leg cramps, varicose veins, arm and leg numbness or tingling and even impotence.

Macular degeneration and cataracts may also improve by means of the extract's effects on circulation. Grape seed had been used for its liver protective effects.

Heart Disease

The proanthocyanidins found in grape seed extract have also been shown to help promote the structural strength of blood vessels, help stabilise collagen, and maintain elastin. Collagen and elastin are two proteins found in connective tissue that support organs, joints, and muscles.

By nourishing blood vessel walls and performing other renewing functions, grape seed extract helps promote healthy blood pressure levels, heart health, and a proper inflammation response. It may be effective for slowing retinopathy, the gradual break down of the retinas in the eyes, usually due to blood vessel damage. Individuals with arteriosclerosis (a build up of fatty deposits in the arteries), diabetes, or other conditions that increase the likelihood for damage to the small blood vessels in the eyes are more likely to have serious vision problems as a result of that damage. Grape seed extract may also reduce eye stress caused by bright lights. Slow progression of macular degeneration and cataracts. Grape seed extract improves blood flow in the eye's tiny vessels, where certain eye diseases can cause blockages and impairments that result in vision damage. Cataracts are an example. The extract's antioxidant powers are of particular value in warding off the free-radical damage so frequently cited as the leading cause of macular degeneration.

For example, results from human case reports and some laboratory and animal studies appear to show that grape seed extract may help to prevent and treat heart diseases such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Substances in grape seed extract may also block the effects of enzymes that process fats, including cholesterol, from the diet. Less fat may be absorbed and more may be eliminated from the body. Other research shows that grape seed extract may help to prevent or control damage to body cells that is caused by drugs, pollution, tobacco, and other toxins. While all of these studies appear promising, much more research, including long-term studies in humans, is needed to confirm initial findings.


This blood vessel strengthening effect of grape seed extract may also may also help to prevent and treat haemorrhoids and treat a condition known as chronic venous insufficiency, which occurs when valves in the veins that carry blood back to the heart are weak or damaged. The blood that collects in the veins of the legs can lead to varicose veins, spider veins, or sores on the legs.


A recent study of 38 smokers indicates that PCOs may function as effectively as aspirin in keeping blood cells from sticking together and forming blood clots (called an anticoagulant effect). And the PCOs posed no risk of the gastrointestinal irritation or bleeding generally associated with aspirin. Interestingly, another preliminary study using grape seed oil (which is related to grape seed extract) indicates that using 2 tablespoons a day to replace other oils in cooking could increase HDL ("good") cholesterol by 14% and reduce triglycerides by 15% in just four weeks.


One of the polyphenols contained in grape seed extract is called resveratrol. In laboratory and animal studies, resveratrol from grape seeds has appeared to interfere with cancer cell growth and division, as well as causing some cancer cells to disintegrate faster than they would ordinarily. In addition, it may also block enzymes that prolong the survival of several cancer cell types. As a result, tumours may either stop growing or actually shrink because higher than usual numbers of cancer cells die. Therefore, resveratrol may have direct anti-cancer activity. The antioxidants in grape seed extract work hard at helping to control cellular damage, routinely hunting down and neutralising mutations within the genetic material of cells that could lead to tumour formation. The development and progression of cancers of the lung, breast, stomach, prostate, colon, skin and other body parts may be stalled as a result.

It may also increase the effectiveness and/or lower the side effects of drugs currently used for cancer chemotherapy. One possible result is that taking resveratrol during chemotherapy may allow lower doses of cancer drugs to be effective, thereby limiting the potential for debilitating side effects. A similar effect was seen in laboratory studies of grape seed extract against HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Although the exact ways that grape seed extract may fight HIV and other viruses are not known, it is thought that grape seed extract interferes with viral multiplication, possibly by preventing viral attachment to host cells. How high doses of resveratrol and other chemicals in grape seed extract may affect normal human cells is not yet known.


Fibromyalgia is an elusive disorder associated with chronic muscle pain and stiffness. The antioxidant power of grape seed extract can help minimize fibromylagia damage by protecting besieged muscle cells.


Disorders such as endometriosis, which are affected by the release of hormone-like substances called prostaglandins, may benefit from the extract's ability to block the release of this pain and inflammation causing chemical. Grape seed extract effectively penetrates cell membranes throughout the body with its antioxidant properties. It can even cross into the brain (traversing the blood-brain barrier) to protect brain cells from free-radical damage.

Skin diseases such as psoriasis and eczema

Certain components within the skin--collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid--participate in keeping it healthy. PCOs help keep these substances in good shape by blocking enzymes that might disrupt their chemical structure. In this way, grape seed extract may be useful in treating inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis. Its flavonoids also inhibit allergic reactions that can generate such skin problems as eczema.

Lessen allergy symptoms

As a natural antihistamine, grape seed extract may help to control the sneezing, congestion and other hallmarks of an allergic reaction. The extract also inhibits the release of chemicals called prostaglandins that can generate inflammation during an allergic response. Working in concert, the nutrient's antihistamine and anti-inflammatory actions can help to keep at bay such allergic responses as hives, hay fever and eczema.

Hair growth

Researchers have discovered that Grape Seed Extract can help defeat the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which stops the hair follicle growth cycle. Grape Seed Extract can help stimulate healthy hair growth.


To realize a consistent benefit from grape seed extract, you need to take it regularly. Only about 30% of its PCOs remain in your body 24 hours after taking the supplement.

Do not take grape seed without first talking to your doctor if you:

have a bleeding or blood clotting disorder
are taking a medicine to prevent blood clots or that affects blood-clotting such as warfarin and asparin.
are taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug
are taking other medications, herbs, antioxidants, or health supplements that may affect blood clotting.
are pregnant, breast-feeding or planning a pregnancy. It is not known whether grape seed will harm an unborn baby or a nursing infant.

There is no information available regarding the use of grape seed by children. Do not give any herbal/health supplement to a child without first talking to the child's doctor.

Home Remedies for Dark circles under the EYES

Dark circles under the eyes tell us about the health of an individual. They are produced due to overstrain, after an illness or an allergy. They can also be the result of undernourishment. But these dark circles do not produce any harm to the body. So anybody with dark circles should not worry about them. In fact, sometimes they're not even an indication of physical problems. Dark circles can be aggravated by fatigue, allergies, overexposure to the sun, menstruation or pregnancy. But they're usually hereditary; if your parents have them, there are more chances that you do, too have them.
Dark circles are the result of the engorged blood vessels under your eyes. Because the skin under eyes is thinner than skin anywhere else on body, therefore blood vessels there are more noticeable, especially in fair skinned persons. Usually, dark circles are caused by hyper pigmentation of melanin, the substance that gives color to the skin. In western countries, the kidneys are related to the adrenal glands and with stress levels in life being so high; these glands are very often exhausted. When these glands are weakened, allergies are prevalent. Dark circles under the eyes are known to be a classic symptom of an allergy, together other signs including edema and fatigue. Dark circles under eyes may also be due to aging which thins the skin around the eyes. Eight hours of sleep is essential. Do not leave cream on the skin around the eyes for long periods. Circles under the eyes can worsen in people who smoke or suffer from allergies.

Apply a cold compress this will help to constrict blood vessels and turns tissue white, and dark circles will lighten.
Drink at least eight to ten glasses of water everyday.
Put slices of raw potatoes or cucumber by closing eyes over the eyelids for 15-20 minutes.
Wash with warm water and apply a cream.
Take out the juice of the cucumber.
Prepare a mixture of lemon juice, lanolin cream and cucumber juice and apply around the eye for 10-15 minutes.
Prepare a mixture by adding equal quantity of potato and cucumber juices.
Dip a cotton swab in this mixture and put the cotton on eyelids and keep for 20 minutes.
Wash your eyes with cold water.
Prepare a mixture of lemon and tomato juice (equal parts) and apply it on the black circles 2 times a day.
Make a paste of turmeric powder with pineapple juice for dark circles under the eyes.
Apply crushed mint around the eye.
Another home remedy for dark circles under the eyes is - massage with almond oil under and around eyes at bedtime daily for 2 weeks. Almond helps to remove dark circles.
No cream should be left on the skin around the eyes for long periods.
Rub the area with a powdered Vitamin E capsule and wash off with a mixture of honey and egg white. Put hot and cold clothes alternatively under eyes for 10 minutes. Then apply some almond oil on the dark circles before going to bed.
The acupressure point for eyes is on the mount below the index finger of your palms.
Pressing this mount may help.
Dip some carrot leave in hot water and leave for a few minutes. Drink the liquid 3 times a day before meals.
Dip cotton balls in rose water or cold water and keep under the eyes for 10 minutes.
Make a paste of 1 tsp. tomato juice, 1/2 tsp. lemon juice, a pinch of turmeric powder, and 1 tsp. of flour. Apply around eyes. Leave on for 10 minutes before washing. This is an effective home remedy for dark circle treatment.
Take some freezed parsley. Use the parsley cubes instead of eye creams to reduce the dark circles and puffiness. Parsley is packed with chlorophyll which helps fade darkness, while the ice cubes reduce the swelling.
Takes vasoline, put it on a metal spoon and freeze it for 15 minutes. Then apply it to the eyes for a few minutes.
Add some mint leaves, lemon juice, and sal t to tomato juice and drink.
Grate some cucumber and freeze in an ice tray.
Massage frozen cucumber cubes onto eyes to reduce puffiness and dark circles.
Avoid excess of chocolates and try to take more fibres in the diet.

To prevent dark circles take 2 magnesium tablets per day, especially if you're taking calcium. Use a sunscreen especially made for the face with a sun protection factor (SPF) to keep the sun's rays from darkening the skin under your eyes Eat vegetables and fruits rich in vitamin A for the treatment of dark circles under eyes.

Home Remedies for Glowing Complexion

Looking good costs money, right... Or does it?

If you are feeling too broke to splurge on a facial at the salon, let Mother Nature come to the rescue.

All you need is to do is invest some time and effort once a week, and use the ingredients available in your kitchen to concoct your own facial at home.
You can decide which facial to opt for, depending on your skin type and on the availability of the ingredients.

These facials can be done once a week, or before going for a party or for an occasion.

Note of caution: If your skin is sensitive to any natural product, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist before using any of the given remedies.

Also, please wash your face before using any of these face packs.

Normal skin

~ Extract the juice of half an orange or tomato, mix with two teaspoons of curd. Lightly massage onto your face in an upward direction. Let it dry. Then, wash your face with cold water and wipe dry. This will give your skin a nice glow.

~ Rub the inner part of the skin of a papaya on your face. Let it dry. Then, wash your face with cold water and wipe dry. This will give your skin a nice glow.

Whenever you cut a papaya to eat, save a small portion of the peel for this purpose. You can store the peel in an airtight container for about two days in the fridge; however, it is preferable to use it fresh.

~ Grind 50 grams (around half a cup) of cabbage and extract the juice. Apply this on your face. After it dries, wash with cool water and wipe dry. This helps tighten your skin and prevents wrinkles.

~ Grind one small carrot and squeeze the pulp to remove the juice. Apply the juice on your face and let it dry. Then, wash with cold water and wipe your face dry. This helps to rejuvenate your skin.

~ Whenever eating an apple, do not discard the skin. Use it as a skin cleanser.

Just rub the inner side of the peel in an upward direction and let your face dry. Then, wash with cool water and pat dry. This helps tighten your skin.

~ Take an ice cube and rub on your face. Then, pat dry. This helps to improve blood circulation and keeps your skin healthy.

Variation: Boil some lemon grass in a small container of water and cool. Pour it in the ice tray and freeze. Later, rub the ice cube on your face.

~ Beat the white of one egg and apply on your face in an upward direction. Once it dries, wash with cold water. It helps tighten your skin and delays wrinkles.

Oily skin

~ Make a paste of 2 tbsp of wheat flour using as much water as needed. Apply on your face in an upward motion. Leave to dry. Then, wash with cool water and pat dry. This helps remove excess oil from your skin.

~ Mix two teaspoons of raw milk, around the same quantity of cucumber juice and few drops of lemon. With a cotton ball, apply the solution on your face and leave to dry. Then, wash with water and pat dry.

~Soak two to three teaspoons of methi (fenugreek) seeds overnight. Grind into a paste, then rub on your face. Once it dries, wash with cool water.

The granular effect helps remove blackheads. Methi also helps remove excess oil from your skin.

The excess paste can be stored in the refrigerator but should be used within a week.

~ Soak two to three teaspoons of whole masoor dal (red gram) overnight. Grind into a paste and apply on your face. Once it dries, wash your face with cold water and pat dry. It gives the same effect as methi.

The excess paste can be stored in the refrigerator but should be used within two days.

~ Grind half a cucumber and squeeze to remove the juice. Apply the juice on your face and leave to dry. Then wash with water and pat dry.

It helps refresh and tighten your skin.

For dry skin
~ Mash half a ripe banana, add a teaspoon of honey and make a paste. Apply on your face. Once it dries, wash with cold water and pat dry.

This acts as a moisturiser and helps in tighten your skin.

~ Soak khus khus (poppy seeds) overnight. Grind it with just enough milk to make a paste. Apply on your face. Once it dries, wash with cold water.

The natural oil present in khus khus helps to moisturise your skin.

~ Just before boiling milk, remove two tablespoons. Massage it lightly on your face in an upward motion. Leave to dry, then wash with water and pat dry.

This helps to keep your skin supple.

Variation: Add � teaspoon of salt to the raw milk and follow the same process. However, avoid doing this if you have pimples on your face.

~ Make a paste of 2-5 tablespoons of raw peanuts with milk. Add � teaspoon of honey to it. Apply on your face. Leave to dry. Then wash with cold water and pat dry.

The natural oils present in the peanuts help moisturise your skin.

~ Make a paste of one teaspoon of malai, a pinch of turmeric and four to five drops of olive oil. Apply on your face, leave to dry. Wash with cold water and pat dry.

Malai acts as a natural moisturiser and turmeric and olive oil helps rejuvenate your skin.

Combination skin

~ Mix 3-4 tablespoons of Multani mitti (Fuller's Earth) with 8-10 ground pudina (mint) leaves. Freeze the pack overnight.

Keep outside for 10-15 minutes and then apply on your face. After 10-15 minutes, wash off and pat dry. It helps in cooling and cleansing your skin.

~ Boil a handful of lemon grass leaves in one litre of water, until you get the aroma. Then, place in an ice tray and freeze.

After returning home from work or an outing, rub a lemon grass ice cube all over your face. It cleanses the dirt and grime accumulated in your skin's pores and shuts them.

Whisk away black spots and pimples

~ Make a paste of either half a piece of nutmeg/ six to eight jamun seeds with water/ rose water. Apply on your face. Leave to dry. Then, wash with cold water and pat dry.

~ Squeeze half a fresh lemon into one glass of freshly boiled milk. Leave for half and hour, then apply on your face before retiring to bed.

~ Take 125 ml (� cup) of tomato juice and squeeze in half a lemon. Add five to seven mashed mint leaves and black salt to taste.

Drink this every morning and evening for at least one week. It will help detoxify the body.

It also helps to relieve constipation and worm infestation.

For blemishes
~ Rub a slice of lemon or the remains a squeezed lemon on your face. Allow it to remain overnight, then wash with cold water. It will restore your skin's softness and lend your complexion a glow.

~ Squeeze the juice of one lemon into one ripe tomato (in which a hole has been made). Rub the tomato on your face. Leave to dry. Then, wash with water and pat dry.

Diet tips
Diet can play a major role in imparting glow and freshness to your skin, some of the tips that can help are:

~ Drink 12 to14 glasses of water everyday.

~ Avoid eating to much of fried foods like vadas, samosa, chips, bhajias, etc. Stick to fresh vegetable salads or fruit salads.

Depending on the seasonal availability, eat all types of fresh, green vegetables and all types of fresh, juicy fruits (except for strawberries and mangoes; they are heaty and overconsumption can lead to acne).

~ Avoid consuming too much of heaty food like chillies, garlic, non-vegetarian items or dried fruits like dates.
~ Detoxify once a month by consuming fresh vegetables, fruits and liquids all day.

Mash banana with milk and apply it on face . Leave it for 20 minutes and rinse with cold water.

Make a fine paste of one teaspoon of walnut powder, lemon juice and honey. Scrub the body with the paste. Leave it for 20 minutes and rinse with cold water.
Make a paste of turmeric powder and orange juice. Scrub it on the area that is widely exposed to sun or cold weather. Leave it for 20 minutes and rinse it with cold water.

A piece of papaya when applied to the face can do a similar magic.
Boil cabbage in water and let the water cool overnight. Wash your face with this water early in the morning.

Make a paste of powdered mango peels and 1 teaspoon of milk powder. Scrub it over the area that is widely exposed to sun or cold weather.
In equal quantities, mix vinegar with rose water and apply.
Make a face mask of curd and cucumber juice and apply it at least once a week.
Make a paste of red sandal wood and apply it on the face every day for glowing skin.
Make a paste with red sandal powder and coconut milk and apply on the face for soft skin. A healthy massage with coconut milk and a pinch of turmeric powder before a hot water bath also helps.
Mix pineapple juice and carrot juice together and apply it on the face and wash it after 15 minutes.
Boil 8 cups of water, put in 2 table spoons of dark organic honey, slices of cucumber and 2 tea bags of green tea. Let the mixture sit over night in a container, then wash with a face cloth to feel refreshed.
Mix half teaspoon dried curry leaf powder with multani mitti (fullers earth) and apply on the face. Wash it with lukewarm water after it gets dry.
Apply the mixture of honey and tomato juice on the face and neck, wash it after 15 minutes.
Apply coconut water and thick pineapple juice mixture for 15 minutes and pat dry.
Drink plenty of water to keep your body well flushed of toxins and wastes.
Include plenty of raw foods like fruits, salads and sprouts in your daily diet.
Make sure to take time to relax as stress can trigger off many skin problems.

Practice the above given methods at least for four weeks continuously. However, if you are allergic to any natural remedies listed above, make sure to avoid it.