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6 Year Old Girl Stops 300 Seizures A Week Using Cannabis

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What was once heavily portrayed as an unhealthy, dangerous and destructive drug is now considered a miracle medicinal gift from nature. Hundreds of studies have surfaced proving the medical efficacy of cannabis, and more stories are surfacing everyday of people who have used this plant for healing.

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Below is the story of a 6 year old girl, Charlotte Figi who stopped her some 300 seizures a week by using cannabis. When pharmaceutical drugs failed, her mom turned to cannabis oil in desperation. Charlotte was unable to walk, talk or eat, but after her treatment she was able to do all of those things. Cannabis reduced her seizures to two to three per week, and she is now completely off all of her pharmaceuticals.

There are a number of reported cases where cannabis has been effective in reducing and stopping seizure activity. A member of the CE team, Shelley M. White wrote about her experience with using cannabis to stop her seizures. You can read more about that here.

Related Stories:
Cannabis has the potential to replace a plethora of medications, and pretty much deems many of them useless. In fact, statistics show that prescription drugs kill over 100,000 people every year. You can read more about that here.

Last year we posted an article of a woman who achieved incredible results after replacing 40 medications with raw cannabis juice. You can read about that here.

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Cannabinoids have been proven to reduce cancer cells as they have a great impact on the rebuilding of the immune system. To read more about that, click here.

If anybody is interested in using cannabis as a cancer treatment method, please contact us. We can put you in contact with doctors here in Toronto that will be able to provide the right information with regards to method of ingestion, amount and where to find more information.

For more studies and information regarding the medical applications of cannabis, feel free to use our search bar or browse through the site! I’ve provided a few from our site to get your started if you’re interested.

Sources:

http://tv.greenmedinfo.com/6-yr-old-girl-stops-300-seizures-week-marijuana/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/09/charlotte-figi-6-year-old-marijuana-medical_n_3734283.html

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Awareness

Lyme Disease: The CDC’s Greatest Coverup & What They Don’t Want You To Know

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Image by Catkin from Pixabay

Lyme disease, do you have it? If you did, you probably wouldn’t know – unless you’re one of the chronic sufferers that have had to visit over 30 doctors to get a proper diagnosis. Lyme disease tests are highly inaccurate, often inconclusive or indicating false negatives.

Why? Because this clever bacteria has found a way to dumb down the immune system and white blood cells so that it’s not detectable until treatment is initiated. To diagnose Lyme properly you must see a “Lyme Literate MD (LLMD),” however, more and more doctors are turning their backs on patients due to sheer fear of losing their practices! Insurance companies and the CDC will do whatever it takes to stop Chronic Lyme Disease from being diagnosed, treated, or widely recognized as an increasingly common issue.

Lyme is considered by the medical field to “only” transmit by way of a tick infected with bacteria. However, the CDC itself admits it is under-reported, and believes there are between 300,000 to half a million new cases each year. That makes Lyme disease almost twice as common as breast cancer and six times more common than HIV/AIDS. Where are all of these new cases coming from? (It’s interesting to note that since Avril Lavigne recently went public with her Chronic Lyme Disease battle, mainstream news outlets like The Daily Mail have been mentioning Lyme can be transmitted by mosquitoes, too!)

lyme-disease-tick

When Lyme isn’t detected in the early stages, it becomes Chronic Lyme, a condition which the CDC and IDSA both deny even exists. They will continue to deny it, because if there’s one thing insurance companies hate, it’s chronic disorders they have to spend time and money treating. Therefore, a panel with ties to insurance companies gathered to write up official Lyme guidelines that assure patients are only allowed a few weeks of antibiotic treatment and are not to be diagnosed with Chronic Lyme Disease (even if clear symptoms persist and invade the nervous system). Over half of the panelists who wrote the IDSA Lyme guidelines announcing that Chronic Lyme is not real — including the panel chairman — have obvious conflicts of interest including financial interests in drug companies, diagnostic tests, and patents, as well as consulting agreements with insurance companies. Researchers and scientists with evidence in support of Chronic Lyme were intentionally excluded from the panel. Because of these unjust Lyme guidelines, insurance companies have the “right” to deny coverage for the treatment of long-term Lyme disease. Doctors have even lost their practices for successfully diagnosing and treating Chronic Lyme, as shown in the film Under Our Skin. In the case of Dr. Joseph Jemsek of North Carolina, he not only lost his license, but also his livelihood. Dr. Jemsek can no longer practice simply because he gave antibiotics to Chronic Lyme sufferers, and was then sued by BCBS for 100 million dollars, following which he had to declare bankruptcy. You can read his closing remarks to the NC Medical Board just before they pulled his license here. You can also watch his story in the documentary at the end of this post.

Busted – Big Pharma bucks taint the IDSA

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal investigated the IDSA panel members for possible violation of antitrust laws and conflicts of interest.

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Of the 14 panel authors of the first edition guidelines: 6 of them or their universities held patents on Lyme or its co-infections, 4 received funding from Lyme or co-infection test kit manufacturers, 4 were paid by insurance companies to write Lyme policy guidelines or consult in Lyme legal cases, and 9 received money from Lyme disease vaccine manufacturers. Some of the authors were involved in more than one conflict of interest. (Source: ‘Under Our Skin [2008])

Study: Strong Evidence Of Sexual Transmission

The bacteria that causes Lyme disease is Borrelia burgdorferi, a type of corkscrew-shaped bacteria known as a spirochete. The Lyme spirochete is a cousin to Treponema pallidum, the spirochete that causes syphilis.

Dr. Alan MacDonald, MD who appears in the documentary ‘Under Our Skin’ (2008), says in the film that he found found Borrelia (Lyme) DNA in 7 out of 10 postmortem Alzheimers patients’ brains. This makes perfect sense, since syphilis, its cousin, also invades the brain in tertiary or neurosyphilis. Dr. Klinghardt, MD (also quoted from ‘Under Our Skin’) stated that he’s “never had a single patient with Alzheimer’s, ALS, Parkinson’s Disease or Multiple Sclerosis who tested negative for Borrelia.”


Dr. Alan MacDonald, MD talks about Lyme.

Why are so many people suffering from Lyme disease and its allegedly associated chronic disorders, such as Alzheimers and ALS? A new study suggests that just like its spirochete cousin that causes syphilis, Lyme disease may be sexually transmitted! The study was presented at the annual Western Regional Meeting of the American Federation for Medical Research, and an abstract of the research was published in the January issue of the Journal of Investigative Medicine.

Medical Daily reports,

The study — presented at the annual Western Regional Meeting of the American Federation for Medical Research — a collaborative effort by an international team of scientists — tested semen samples and vaginal secretions of three groups of patients to investigate whether passing Lyme disease to a partner through unprotected sex is a possibility. The study observed control subjects without evidence of Lyme disease, random subjects who tested positive for Lyme disease, and married heterosexual couples engaging in unprotected sex who tested positive for the disease. The presence of B. burgdorferi and identical strains of the bacterium were of particular interest to the researchers in unprotected sex in spouses.

The control subjects were found to test negative for the bacterium in semen samples or vaginal secretions, as expected by the researchers. The researchers found traces of B. burgdorferi in the vaginal secretions of all women with Lyme disease. In contrast, approximately half of the men with the disease tested positive for the bacterium in semen samples. In addition, one of the heterosexual couples with Lyme disease were found to have identical strains of the bacterium in their genital secretions.

One researcher in the study notes, “There is always some risk of getting Lyme disease from a tick bite in the woods. But there may be a bigger risk of getting Lyme disease in the bedroom.”

“Our findings will change the way Lyme disease is viewed by doctors and patients,” said Marianne Middelveen, lead author of the study. “It explains why the disease is more common than one would think if only ticks were involved in transmission.” But will this actually change the way Lyme disease is viewed? Or will the money funneled in by insurance companies and vaccine manufacturers continue to blind and corrupt the IDSA board members? When is enough, enough?

The study was a joint effort by a team of scientists which included dermatologists, molecular biologists, microbiologists, internists, and family practitioners. The most revealing aspect of the study, in my opinion, is the fact I mentioned earlier: one of the heterosexual couples with Lyme disease showed identical strains of the Lyme spirochete in their genital secretions. “The presence of the Lyme spirochete in genital secretions and identical strains in married couples strongly suggests that sexual transmission of the disease occurs,” said Dr. Mayne.

Gestational Transmission From Mother To Child

From LymeDisease.org:

A North Carolina State University researcher has discovered that Bartonella (a common Lyme co-infection) can be passed to unborn babies, causing chronic infections and possibly birth defects. Dr. Ed Breitschwerdt and his research group tested blood and tissue samples taken over a period of years from a mother, father and son who had suffered chronic illnesses for over a decade. Autopsy samples from their daughter–the son’s twin who died shortly after birth–contained DNA evidence of B. henselae and B. vinsonii subsp. berkhoffi infection, which was also found in the other members of the family. Breitschwerdt’s research appears online in the April 14 Journal of Clinical Microbiology.

You can read a transcript of one of Breitschwerdt’s interviews on Bartonella here.

Multiple Strains Of Lyme?

In 2002, W.T. Harvey, an MD from Houston, began finding large numbers of chronically ill Borrelia burgdorferi PCR- and seropositive patients in the area around his home and practice. Houston, Texas is declared a zoonotically “non-endemic” area, so he set out to understand just how this epidemic was occurring. W.T. Harvey had no competing financial interest (as the CDC and IDSA do) and received no grants when writing his study on Lyme.

“In order to understand this finding prior to sufficient data availability, we chose to examine critically the currently accepted but troublesome ‘Lyme disease’ concepts,” Harvey’s study reads. “Our method was to analyze each foundation ‘Lyme disease’ premise within the context of available medical and veterinary literature, then to reconstruct the disease model consistent with the preponderance of that data. We find the present conceptualization of the illness seriously truncated, with a high likelihood of two distinct but connected forms of human B. burgdorferi infection. The yet-unrecognized form appears to have a broader clinical presentation, wider geographic distribution, and vastly greater prevalence. We conclude that ‘Lyme disease’ currently acknowledges only its zoonosis arm and is a limited conceptualization of a far more pervasive and unrecognized infection state that must be considered a global epidemic.

Could You Have Lyme From Your Pets?

Suzy Cohen of suzycohen.com is a registered pharmacist and best-selling author. When she graduated from pharmacy school in 1989, she believed that medication was the answer to helping patients get healthy. When that didn’t always work, she began to do some serious research. In one article addressing the truth about Lyme, she writes:

“Most Lyme sufferers have pet cats and dogs, they are not aware that their pets gave it to them. But it happens like this, your pets go out into the yard to do their duty, and ticks jump on them, especially in May and June, their breeding season but any time of the year is possible. Your pet totes these ticks into your house and then you cuddle with your pet. The ticks get on you, and numb your skin. They are teeny tiny, about the size of a poppy seed and you’ll never know you got bit. They like every part of your body, but especially warmer areas, like armpits for example. You may never know. Sometimes the Lyme can happen from a cat scratch or bite. When I ask pet owners about their pets, they go into a bit of denial, because of the great love they have for pets. But you have to realize pets, for as delightful as they are, are tick taxis. If you have Lyme, and get bit again by your pet, you are potentially introducing new coinfections or re-innoculating yourself with more Lyme organisms. It explains why some people just can’t get well, or get setbacks even under treatment.”

Borrelia spirochetes have been found in the urine of infected dogs, among several other animals. Studies on mice have found that the spirochetes in urine remained viable for 18-24 hours and concluded that “[u]rine may provide a method for contact non-tick transmission of B. burgdorferi in natural rodent populations particularly during periods of nesting and/or breeding.” Evidence for direct contact transmission has been demonstrated in mice. These findings suggest that further research is needed to evaluate alternate methods of Lyme transmission, such as by the urine of infected animals to humans. 

Conclusion & How To Learn More:

“Lyme is one of the many microbes that has entered our system. And I feel as a physician that things are getting to a degree that’s serious. We’re watching other mammals die out and just think, ‘well, I’m glad it’s not me.’ However, as our environment becomes increasingly polluted, so do our bodies. And then we grow bugs [parasites, pathogens] in us that are not compatible with human life anymore.” 
Dr. Klinghardt, MD, ‘Under Our Skin’ (2008).
7461400_f520
As Dr. Klinghardt said, this is getting serious. Or as Dr. Harvey put it, this is an epidemic. These patients, along with solid science, are being purposefully ignored because IDSA panelists have been bribed and bought. 

Could you have Lyme? I suspect I might after a series of flea bites in 2011, and I’m almost positive my mother has had it for a very long time. Her doctors are finally thinking the same. This is no shock to me; as Dr. Klinghardt stated above, Lyme is one of the many microbes that has entered our system. We are all exposed to pathogens and parasites on a daily basis, and are never taught anything about how to cleanse or maintain a largely uninhabitable inner environment (hint: a strong immune system)! In fact, I’m on my third parasite cleanse and still passing worms. What else are we housing that we don’t know about? Why is all of this information ignored?

Lyme presents itself in symptoms often misdiagnosed as Crohn’s Disease, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, ALS, MS, Alzheimer’s, Colitis, Encephalitis, Fibromyalgia, Fifth’s Disease, Arthritis, Cystitis, IBS, Lupus, Prostatitis, Psychiatric Disorders (bipolar, depression), Sjogren’s Syndrome, sleep disorders, thyroid disease, and more.

This is a long list, and the number of people who go misdiagnosed or undiagnosed altogether is staggering. As I said, Lyme and hundreds of other pathogens and parasites have taken up residence in our bodies. We have improved our outer practices of hygiene, yet have increased our sources of autointoxication: GMO foods, processed food-like products, overeating, fluoride in water, and chemicals in everything from household cleaners to plastics – just to name a few.

Please watch “Under Our Skin” to learn more about Chronic Lyme disease and how the medical industry continues to ignore this epidemic. The full documentary is available here with a short preview below.

Help Support Collective Evolution

The demand for Collective Evolution's content is bigger than ever, except ad agencies and social media keep cutting our revenues. This is making it hard for us to continue.

In order to stay truly independent, we need your help. We are not going to put up paywalls on this website, as we want to get our info out far and wide. For as little as $3 a month, you can help keep CE alive!

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Alternative News

Japan Leads the Way: No Vaccine Mandates and No MMR Vaccine = Healthier Children

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    This article was written By Kristina Kristen, Guest Writer, for Children's Health Defense, posted here with permission.

  • Reflect On:

    How much do pharmaceutical companies really care about our health? Why is important information on vaccines never acknowledged and countered by the mainstream?

In the United States, many legislators and public health officials are busy trying to make vaccines de facto compulsory—either by removing parental/personal choice given by existing vaccine exemptions or by imposing undue quarantines and fines on those who do not comply with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) vaccine edicts. Officials in California are seeking to override medical opinion about fitness for vaccination, while those in New York are mandating the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine for 6-12-month-old infants for whom its safety and effectiveness “have not been established.”

The U.S. has the very highest infant mortality rate of all industrialized countries, with more American children dying at birth and in their first year than in any other comparable nation—and more than half of those who survive develop at least one chronic illness.

American children would be better served if these officials—before imposing questionable and draconian measures—studied child health outcomes in Japan. With a population of 127 million, Japan has the healthiest children and the very highest “healthy life expectancy” in the world—and the least vaccinated children of any developed country. The U.S., in contrast, has the developed world’s most aggressive vaccination schedule in number and timing, starting at pregnancy, at birth and in the first two years of life. Does this make U.S. children healthier? The clear answer is no. The U.S. has the very highest infant mortality rate of all industrialized countries, with more American children dying at birth and in their first year than in any other comparable nation—and more than half of those who survive develop at least one chronic illness. Analysis of real-world infant mortality and health results shows that U.S. vaccine policy does not add up to a win for American children.

Japan and the U.S.; Two Different Vaccine Policies

In 1994, Japan transitioned away from mandated vaccination in public health centers to voluntary vaccination in doctors’ offices, guided by “the concept that it is better that vaccinations are performed by children’s family doctors who are familiar with their health conditions.” The country created two categories of non-compulsory vaccines: “routine” vaccines that the government covers and “strongly recommends” but does not mandate, and additional “voluntary” vaccines, generally paid for out-of-pocket. Unlike in the U.S., Japan has no vaccine requirements for children entering preschool or elementary school.

Japan also banned the MMR vaccine in the same time frame, due to thousands of serious injuriesover a four-year period—producing an injury rate of one in 900 children that was “over 2,000 times higher than the expected rate.” It initially offered separate measles and rubella vaccines following its abandonment of the MMR vaccine; Japan now recommends a combined measles-rubella (MR) vaccine for routine use but still shuns the MMR. The mumps vaccine is in the “voluntary” category.

Here are key differences between the Japanese and U.S. vaccine programs:

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  • Japan has no vaccine mandates, instead recommending vaccines that (as discussed above) are either “routine” (covered by insurance) or “voluntary” (self-pay).
  • Japan does not vaccinate newborns with the hepatitis B (HepB) vaccine, unless the mother is hepatitis B positive.
  • Japan does not vaccinate pregnant mothers with the tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine.
  • Japan does not give flu shots to pregnant mothers or to six-month-old infants.
  • Japan does not give the MMR vaccine, instead recommending an MR vaccine.
  • Japan does not require the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine.

No other developed country administers as many vaccine doses in the first two years of life.

In contrast, the U.S. vaccine schedule (see Table 1) prescribes routine vaccination during pregnancy, calls for the first HepB vaccine dose within 24 hours of birth—even though 99.9% of pregnant women, upon testing, are hepatitis B negative, and follows up with 20 to 22 vaccine doses in the first year alone. No other developed country administers as many vaccine doses in the first two years of life.

The HepB vaccine injects a newborn with a 250-microgram load of aluminum, a neurotoxic and immune-toxic adjuvant used to provoke an immune response. There are no studies to back up the safety of exposing infants to such high levels of the injected metal. In fact, the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) upper limit for aluminum in intravenous (IV) fluids for newborns is far lower at five micrograms per kilogram per day (mcg/kg/day)—and even at these levels, researchers have documented the potential for impaired neurologic development. For an average newborn weighing 7.5 pounds, the HepB vaccine has over 15 times more aluminum than the FDA’s upper limit for IV solutions.

Unlike Japan, the U.S. administers flu and Tdap vaccines to pregnant women (during any trimester) and babies receive flu shots at six months of age, continuing every single year thereafter. Manufacturers have never tested the safety of flu shots administered during pregnancy, and the FDA has never formally licensed any vaccines “specifically for use during pregnancy to protect the infant.”

Japan initially recommended the HPV vaccine but stopped doing so in 2013 after serious health problems prompted numerous lawsuits. Japanese researchers have since confirmed a temporal relationship between HPV vaccination and recipients’ development of symptoms.

U.S. vaccine proponents claim the U.S. vaccine schedule is similar to schedules in other developed countries, but this claim is inaccurate upon scrutiny. Most other countries do not recommend vaccination during pregnancy, and very few vaccinate on the first day of life. This is important because the number, type and timing of exposure to vaccines can greatly influence their adverse impact on developing fetuses and newborns, who are particularly vulnerable to toxic exposures and early immune activation. Studies show that activation of pregnant women’s immune systems can cause developmental problems in their offspring. Why are pregnant women in the U.S. advised to protect their developing fetuses by avoiding alcohol and mercury-containing tuna fish, but actively prompted to receive immune-activating Tdap and flu vaccines, which still contain mercury (in multi-dose vials) and other untested substances?

Japan initially recommended the HPV vaccine but stopped doing so in 2013 after serious health problems prompted numerous lawsuits. Japanese researchers have since confirmed a temporal relationship between HPV vaccination and recipients’ development of symptoms. U.S. regulators have ignored these and similar reports and not only continue to aggressively promote and even mandate the formerly optional HPV vaccine beginning in preadolescence but are now pushing it in adulthood. The Merck-manufactured HPV vaccine received fast-tracked approval from the FDA despite half of all clinical trial subjects reporting serious medical conditions within seven months.

Best and Worst: Two Different Infant Mortality Results

The CDC views infant mortality as one of the most important indicators of a society’s overall health. The agency should take note of Japan’s rate, which, at 2 infant deaths per 1,000 live births, is the second lowest in the world, second only to the Principality of Monaco. In comparison, almost three times as many American infants die (5.8 per 1,000 live births), despite massive per capita spending on health care for children (see Table 2). U.S. infant mortality ranks behind 55 other countries and is worse than the rate in Latvia, Slovakia or Cuba.

If vaccines save lives, why are American children dying at a faster rate, and…dying younger compared to children in 19 other wealthy countries—translating into a 57 percent greater risk of death before reaching adulthood?

To reiterate, the U.S. has the most aggressive vaccine schedule of developed countries (administering the most vaccines the earliest). If vaccines save lives, why are American children “dying at a faster rate, and…dying younger” compared to children in 19 other wealthy countries—translating into a “57 percent greater risk of death before reaching adulthood”? Japanese children, who receive the fewest vaccines—with no government mandates for vaccination—grow up to enjoy “long and vigorous” lives. International infant mortality and health statistics and their correlation to vaccination protocols show results that government and health officials are ignoring at our children’s great peril.

Among the 20 countries with the world’s best infant mortality outcomes, only three countries (Hong Kong, Macau and Singapore) automatically administer the HepB vaccine to all newborns—governed by the rationale that hepatitis B infection is highly endemic in these countries. Most of the other 17 top-ranking countries—including Japan—give the HepB vaccine at birth only if the mother is hepatitis B positive (Table 1). The U.S., with its disgraceful #56 infant mortality ranking, gives the HepB vaccine to all four million babies born annually despite a low incidence of hepatitis B.

Is the U.S. Sacrificing Children’s Health for Profits? 

Merck, the MMR vaccine’s manufacturer, is in court over MMR-related fraud. Whistleblowers allege the pharmaceutical giant rigged its efficacy data for the vaccine’s mumps component to ensure its continued market monopoly. The whistleblower evidence has given rise to two separate court cases. In addition, a CDC whistleblower has alleged the MMR vaccine increases autism risks in some children. Others have reported that the potential risk of permanent injuryfrom the MMR vaccine dwarfs the risks of getting measles.

Why do the FDA and CDC continue to endorse the problematic MMR vaccine despite Merck’s implication in fraud over the vaccine’s safety and efficacy? Why do U.S. legislators and government officials not demand a better alternative, as Japan did over two decades ago? Why are U.S. cities and states forcing Merck’s MMR vaccine on American children? Is the U.S. government protecting children, or Merck? Why are U.S. officials ignoring Japan’s exemplary model, which proves that the most measured vaccination program in the industrialized world and “first-class sanitation and levels of nutrition” can produce optimal child health outcomes that are leading the world?

A central tenet of a free and democratic society is the freedom to make informed decisions about medical interventions that carry serious potential risks. This includes the right to be apprised of benefits and risks—and the ability to say no. The Nuremberg Code of ethics established the necessity of informed consent without “any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, over-reaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion.” Forcing the MMR vaccine, or any other vaccine, on those who are uninformed or who do not consent represents nothing less than medical tyranny.


Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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The demand for Collective Evolution's content is bigger than ever, except ad agencies and social media keep cutting our revenues. This is making it hard for us to continue.

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Health

The Powerful Aspirin Alternative Your Doctor Never Told You About

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    This article was written by Sayer Ji, Founder of Greenmedinfo,com where it was originally posted. Published here with permission.

  • Reflect On:

    Given the newly released cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines recommending against daily low-dose aspirin use, natural, safe and effective alternatives are needed now more than ever.

In a previous article titled “The Evidence Against Aspirin and For Natural Alternatives,” we discussed the clear and present danger linked with the use of aspirin as well as several clinically proven alternatives that feature significant side benefits as opposed to aspirin’s many known side effects.

Since writing this article, even more evidence has accumulated indicating that aspirin’s risks outweigh its benefits. Most notably, a 15-year Dutch study published in the journal Heart found that among 27,939 healthy female health professionals (average age 54) randomized to receive either 100 mg of aspirin every day or a placebo the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding outweighed the benefit of the intervention for colorectal cancer and cardiovascular disease prevention in those under 65 years of age. Most recently, last month, new cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines submitted jointly by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Associated and published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, earlier this year, contradict decades of routine medical advice by explicitly advising against the daily use of low-dose or baby aspirin (75-100 mg) as a preventive health strategy against stroke or heart attack, in most cases.

Of course, aspirin is not alone as far as dangerous side effects are concerned. The entire non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) category of prescription and over-the-counter drugs is fraught with serious danger. Ibuprofen, for instance, is known to kill thousands each year, and is believed no less dangerous than Merck’s COX-2 inhibitor NSAID drug Vioxx which caused between 88,000-140,000 cases of serious heart disease in the five years it was on the market (1999-2004). Tylenol is so profoundly toxic to the liver that contributing writer Dr. Michael Murray recently asked in his Op-Ed piece, “Is it Time for the FDA to Remove Tylenol From the Market?” Just as serious are tylenol’s empathy destroying properties that were only identified four years ago.

Given the dire state of affairs associated with pharmaceutical intervention for chronic pain issues, what can folks do who don’t want to kill themselves along with their pain?

Pine Bark Extract (Pycnogenol) Puts Aspirin To Shame

When it comes to aspirin alternatives, one promising contender is pycnogenol, a powerful antioxidant extracted from French maritime pine bark, backed by over 40 years of research, the most compelling of which we have aggregated on GreenMedInfo.com here: Pycnogenol Research. Amazingly, you will find research indexed there showing it may have value for over 80 health conditions.

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In 1999, a remarkable study published in the journal Thrombotic Research found that pycnogenol was superior (i.e. effective at a lower dosage) to aspirin at inhibiting smoking-induced clotting, without the significant (and potentially life-threatening) increase in bleeding time associated with aspirin use. The abstract is well worth reading in its entirety:

“The effects of a bioflavonoid mixture, Pycnogenol, were assessed on platelet function in humans. Cigarette smoking increased heart rate and blood pressure. These increases were not influenced by oral consumption of Pycnogenol or Aspirin just before smoking. However, increased platelet reactivity yielding aggregation 2 hours after smoking was prevented by 500 mg Aspirin or 100 mg Pycnogenol in 22 German heavy smokers. In a group of 16 American smokers, blood pressure increased after smoking. It was unchanged after intake of 500 mg Aspirin or 125 mg Pycnogenol. In another group of 19 American smokers, increased platelet aggregation was more significantly reduced by 200 than either 150 mg or 100 mg Pycnogenol supplementation. This study showed that a single, high dose, 200 mg Pycnogenol, remained effective for over 6 days against smoking-induced platelet aggregation. Smoking increased platelet aggregation that was prevented after administration of 500 mg Aspirin and 125 mg Pycnogenol. Thus, smoking-induced enhanced platelet aggregation was inhibited by 500 mg Aspirin as well as by a lower range of 100-125 mg Pycnogenol. Aspirin significantly (p<0.001) increased bleeding time from 167 to 236 seconds while Pycnogenol did not. These observations suggest an advantageous risk-benefit ratio for Pycnogenol.” [emphasis added]

As emphasized in bold above, pycnogenol unlike aspirin did not significantly increase bleeding time. This has profound implications, as aspirin’s potent anti-platelet/’blood thinning’ properties can also cause life-threatening hemorrhagic events. If this study is accurate and pycnogenol is more effective at decreasing pathologic platelet aggregation at a lower dose without causing the increased bleeding linked to aspirin, then it is clearly a superior natural alternative worthy of far more attention by the conventional medical establishment and research community than it presently receives.

Not Just A Drug Alternative

Pycnogenol, like so many other natural interventions, has a wide range of side benefits that may confer significant advantage when it comes to reducing cardiovascular disease risk. For instance, pycnogenol is also:

  • Blood Pressure Reducing/Endothelial Function Enhancer: A number of clinical studies indicate that pycnogenol is therapeutic for those suffering with hypertension. Pycnogenol actually addresses a root cause of hypertension and cardiovascular disease in general, namely, endothelial dysfunction (the inability of the inner lining of the blood vessels to function correctly, e.g. fully dilate).[1] It has been shown to prevent damage in microcirculation in hypertensive patients, as well as reducing the dose of blood pressure drugs in hypertensive patients,[2]including hypertensive diabetic patients.[3] It has even been found to reduce intraocular hypertension found in glaucoma patients.[4]
  • Anti-Inflammatory Effects: There is a growing appreciation among the medical community that inflammation contributes to cardiovascular disease. Several markers, including C-reactive protein are now being fore grounded as being at least as important in determining cardiovascular disease risk as various blood lipids and/or their ratios, such as low-density lipoprotein (LDL). Pycnogenol has been found to reduce C-reactive protein in hypertensive patients.[5] Pycnogenol has been found to rapidly modulate downward (inhibit) both Cox-1 and Cox-2 enzyme activity in human subjects, resulting in reduced expression of these inflammation-promoting enzymes within 30 minutes post-ingestion.[6] Another observed anti-inflammatory effect of pycnogenol is its ability to down-regulate the class of inflammatory enzymes known as matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs).[7] Pycnogenol has also been found to significantly inhibit NF-kappaB activation, a key body-wide regulator of inflammation levels whose overexpression and/or dysregulation may result in pathologic cardiovascular manifestations.[8] Finally, pycnogenol has been found to reduce fibrinogen levels, a glycoprotein that contributes to the formation of blood clots; fibrinogen has been identified as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease.[9]
  • The Ideal Air Travel Companion: In a previous article entitled, “How Pine Bark Extract Could Save Air Travelers Lives,” we delve into a compelling body of research that indicates pycnogenol may be the perfect preventive remedy for preventing flight-associated thrombosis, edema, and concerns related to radiotoxicity and immune suppression.

Given the evidence for pycnogenol’s pleotrophic cardioprotective properties, we hope that pycnogenol will become more commonly recommended by health care practitioners as the medical paradigm continues to evolve past its reliance on synthetic chemicals, eventually (we hope) returning to natural, increasingly evidence-based interventions. However, it is important that we don’t fall prey to the one-disease-one-pill model, convincing ourselves to focus on popping pills – this time natural ones – as simply countermeasures or ‘insurance’ against the well-known harms associated with the standard American diet, lack of exercise and uncontrolled stress. The ultimate goal is to remove the need for pills altogether, focusing on preventing cardiovascular disease from the ground up and inside out, e.g. letting high quality food, clean water and air, and a healthy attitude nourish and sustain your health and well-being.


References

[1] Ximing Liu, Junping Wei, Fengsen Tan, Shengming Zhou, Gudrun Würthwein, Peter Rohdewald. Pycnogenol, French maritime pine bark extract, improves endothelial function of hypertensive patients. Life Sci. 2004 Jan 2;74(7):855-62. PMID: 14659974

[2] Gianni Belcaro, Maria Rosaria Cesarone, Andrea Ricci, Umberto Cornelli, Peter Rodhewald, Andrea Ledda, Andrea Di Renzo, Stefano Stuard, Marisa Cacchio, Giulia Vinciguerra, Giuseppe Gizzi, Luciano Pellegrini, Mark Dugall, Filiberto Fano. Control of edema in hypertensive subjects treated with calcium antagonist (nifedipine) or angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors with Pycnogenol. Clin Appl Thromb Hemost. 2006 Oct;12(4):440-4. PMID: 17000888

[3] Sherma Zibadi, Peter J Rohdewald, Danna Park, Ronald Ross Watson. Reduction of cardiovascular risk factors in subjects with type 2 diabetes by Pycnogenol supplementation. Nutr Res. 2008 May;28(5):315-20. PMID: 19083426

[4] Robert D Steigerwalt, Belcaro Gianni, Morazzoni Paolo, Ezio Bombardelli, Carolina Burki, Frank Schönlau. Effects of Mirtogenol on ocular blood flow and intraocular hypertension in asymptomatic subjects. Mol Vis. 2008;14:1288-92. Epub 2008 Jul 10. PMID: 18618008

[5] Maria Rosaria Cesarone, Gianni Belcaro, Stefano Stuard, Frank Schönlau, Andrea Di Renzo, Maria Giovanna Grossi, Mark Dugall, Umberto Cornelli, Marisa Cacchio, Giuseppe Gizzi, Luciano Pellegrini. Kidney flow and function in hypertension: protective effects of pycnogenol in hypertensive participants–a controlled study. J Cardiovasc Pharmacol Ther. 2010 Mar;15(1):41-6. Epub 2010 Jan 22. PMID: 20097689

[6] Angelika Schäfer, Zuzana Chovanová, Jana Muchová, Katarína Sumegová, Anna Liptáková, Zdenka Duracková, Petra Högger. Inhibition of COX-1 and COX-2 activity by plasma of human volunteers after ingestion of French maritime pine bark extract (Pycnogenol). Biomed Pharmacother. 2006 Jan;60(1):5-9. Epub 2005 Oct 26. PMID: 16330178

[7] Tanja Grimm, Angelika Schäfer, Petra Högger. Antioxidant activity and inhibition of matrix metalloproteinases by metabolites of maritime pine bark extract (pycnogenol). Wei Sheng Yan Jiu. 2011 Jan;40(1):103-6. PMID: 14990359

[8] Tanja Grimm, Zuzana Chovanová, Jana Muchová, Katarína Sumegová, Anna Liptáková, Zdenka Duracková, Petra Högger. Inhibition of NF-kappaB activation and MMP-9 secretion by plasma of human volunteers after ingestion of maritime pine bark extract (Pycnogenol). J Inflamm (Lond). 2006;3:1. Epub 2006 Jan 27. PMID: 16441890

[9] G Belcaro, M R Cesarone, S Errichi, C Zulli, B M Errichi, G Vinciguerra, A Ledda, A Di Renzo, S Stuard, M Dugall, L Pellegrini, G Gizzi, E Ippolito, A Ricci, M Cacchio, G Cipollone, I Ruffini, F Fano, M Hosoi, P Rohdewald. Variations in C-reactive protein, plasma free radicals and fibrinogen values in patients with osteoarthritis treated with Pycnogenol. Redox Rep. 2008;13(6):271-6. PMID: 19017467

Originally published: 2017-07-23

Article updated: 2019-04-11


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