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Stomach ulcers, also known as peptic or gastric ulcers, are open sores in the lining of the stomach. Because of the amount of acid present in the stomach, when ulcers occur, they are often extremely painful. The most common cause of stomach ulcers is the bacteria helicobacter pylori, or H. pylori. Ulcers may also be caused by overuse of painkillers, such as aspirin, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Stomach ulcers are often treated with antibiotics or medications to reduce, block, or neutralize stomach acid. There are also natural home remedies you can use to help ease the symptoms of a stomach ulcer and help it heal. Flavonoids Research suggests that flavonoids, also known as bioflavonoids, may be an effective treatment for stomach ulcers. Flavonoids are compounds that occur naturally in many fruits and vegetables. Foods and drinks rich in flavonoids include: soybeans legumes red grapes kale broccoli apples berries teas (especially green tea) However, some foods and drinks that contain flavonoids — such as citrus fruits and red wines — can irritate a stomach ulcer. Flavonoids are referred to as “gastroprotective,” which means they defend the lining of the stomach and could allow ulcers to heal. According to the Linus Pauling Institute, there are no side effects of consuming flavonoids in the amount found in a typical diet, but higher amounts of flavonoids may interfere with blood clotting. You can get flavonoids in your diet or take them as supplements. Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice Don’t let that long first word give you a stomach ache — deglycyrrhizinated licorice is just plain old licorice with the sweet flavor extracted. One study showed that deglycyrrhizinated licorice might help ulcers heal by inhibiting the growth of H. pylori. Deglycyrrhizinated licorice is available as a supplement. You can’t get this effect from eating licorice candy, though. Too much licorice candy can be bad for some people. Consuming more than 2 ounces daily for more than two weeks can make existing heart problems or high blood pressure worse. Probiotics Probiotics are the living bacteria and yeast that help keep your digestive system moving. They are present in many common foods, particularly fermented foods. These include: buttermilk yogurt miso kimchi You can also take probiotics in supplement form. Studies have shown that probiotics may be helpful in wiping out H. pylori and increasing recovery rate for patients with ulcers. Honey Honey is far from simply sweet. Depending on the plant it’s derived from, honey can contain up to 200 elements, including polyphenols and other antioxidants. Honey is a powerful antibacterial and has been shown to inhibit H. pylori growth. As long as you have normal blood sugar levels, you can enjoy honey as you would any sweetener, with the bonus of soothing your ulcers. Garlic Garlic extract has been shown to inhibit H. pylori growth in lab, animal, and human trials. If you don’t like the taste (and lingering aftertaste) of garlic, you can take garlic extract in supplemental form. Garlic acts as a blood thinner, so ask your doctor before taking it if you use warfarin or other prescription blood thinners. Cranberry Cranberry is known for its ability to fight urinary tract infections by preventing bacteria from settling on the walls of the bladder. Cranberry and cranberry extract also may help fight H. pylori. You can drink cranberry juice, eat cranberries, or take cranberry supplements. Unfortunately, no specific amount of consumption is associated with relief. Too much cranberry in any form may cause stomach discomfort whether you have ulcers or not, so start with small amounts and increase gradually. In addition, many commercial cranberry juices are heavily sweetened with sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup, which can also cause stomach upset and add empty calories. Avoid those juices by buying juice sweetened only by other juices. Mastic Mastic is the sap of a tree grown in the Mediterranean. Studies of the effectiveness of mastic on ulcers are mixed, but at least one study shows that chewing mastic helps fight H. pylori. If your ulcers are not responding to other treatments, you might want to give mastic gum a try, since it doesn’t seem to be associated with any side effects. You can chew the gum or swallow mastic in supplement form. Fruits, Vegetables, and Whole Grains A diet centered on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains is not just good for your overall health. According to the Mayo Clinic, a vitamin-rich diet can help your body heal your ulcer. Foods containing polyphenols, an antioxidant, can protect you from ulcers and help ulcers heal. Polyphenol-rich foods and seasonings include: dried rosemary Mexican oregano dark chocolate blueberries black olives What to Avoid Some foods can make ulcers worse, while some provide a preventive and healing effect. Greasy and acidic foods are most likely to irritate your stomach, as are spicy foods. To reduce ulcer pain, avoid: coffee, including decaf carbonated beverages chilis and hot peppers processed foods salty red meats deep fried foods Milk and Alcohol Milk’s ability to coat the side of a glass may have you thinking that it also creates a protective barrier in your stomach. In fact, drinking milk may initially soothe your ulcer pain. But in the long run, milk is not good for ulcers. It seems to make things worse by causing your stomach to produce more acid. If you’ve ever had a hangover, you know the effects that alcohol can have on your stomach. It also is directly associated with H. pylori infections, meaning it contributes to stomach ulcers and can make existing ones worse. Excessive drinking is considered more than one drink a day for women, and more than two for men. If a couple of drinks after work is how you unwind, you might want to consider a healthier alternative. Outlook It can take some time, teamwork, and determination to find the right treatment for your ulcers, but don’t give up hope: Ulcers can be cured. In addition to a treatment plan agreed upon by you and your doctor, you can incorporate natural approaches that can give you some relief and accelerate healing. Adding plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet and reducing alcohol intake will almost certainly get you on the road to health.
Dandruff is the shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp.As skin cells die, a small amount of flaking is normal; about 487,000 cells/cm2 get released normally after detergent treatment. Some people, however, experience an unusually large amount of flaking either chronically or as a result of certain triggers, up to 800,000 cells/cm2, which can also be accompanied by redness and irritation. Dandruff is a common scalp disorder affecting almost half of the population at the post-pubertal age and of any sex and ethnicity. It often causes itching. It has been well established that keratinocytes play a key role in the expression and generation of immunological reactions during dandruff formation. The severity of dandruff may fluctuate with season as it often worsens in winter. Dandruff is rare before puberty, peaks in the teens and early twenties, and declines with age thereafter.[3] Most cases of dandruff can be easily treated with specialized shampoos. There is, however, no true cure. Those affected by dandruff find that it can cause social or self-esteem problems, indicating treatment for both psychological and physiological reasons. Signs and symptoms Severe dryness of scalp resulting in Dandruff. Typical case of dandruff. The signs and symptoms of dandruff are an itchy scalp and flakiness. Red and greasy patches of skin and feeling tingly on the skin are also symptoms. Causes Dandruff can have several causes, including dry skin, seborrhoeic dermatitis, not cleaning/scrubbing often enough, shampooing too often, psoriasis, eczema, sensitivity to hair care products, or a yeast-like fungus. Dry skin is the most common cause of flaking dandruff. As the epidermal layer continually replaces itself, cells are pushed outward where they eventually die and flake off. For most individuals, these flakes of skin are too small to be visible. However, certain conditions cause cell turnover to be unusually rapid, especially in the scalp. It is hypothesized that for people with dandruff, skin cells may mature and be shed in 2–7 days, as opposed to around a month in people without dandruff. The result is that dead skin cells are shed in large, oily clumps, which appear as white or grayish patches on the scalp, skin and clothes. According to one study, dandruff has been shown to possibly be the result of three factors: Skin oil commonly referred to as sebum or sebaceous secretions The metabolic by-products of skin micro-organisms (most specifically Malassezia yeasts) Individual susceptibility and allergy sensitivity. Older literature cites the fungus Malassezia furfur (previously known as Pityrosporum ovale) as the cause of dandruff. While this species does occur naturally on the skin surface of both healthy people and those with dandruff, in 2007 it was discovered that the responsible agent is a scalp specific fungus, Malassezia globosa,undefined that metabolizes triglycerides present in sebum by the expression of lipase, resulting in a lipid byproduct oleic acid (OA). During dandruff, the levels of Malassezia increase by 1.5 to 2 times its normal level.Penetration by OA of the top layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, results in an inflammatory response in susceptible persons which disturbs homeostasis and results in erratic cleavage of stratum corneum cells.

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