A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off.
Like all organs, the brain needs the oxygen and nutrients provided by blood to function properly. If the supply of blood is restricted or stopped, brain cells begin to die. This can lead to brain damage and possibly death. Early treatment is vital, as the sooner a person receives treatment for a stroke, the less damage is likely to occur.
In England, strokes are a major health problem. Every year over 150,000 people have a stroke and it is the third largest cause of death, after heart disease and cancer. The brain damage caused by strokes means that they are the largest cause of adult disability in the UK.
People who are over 65 years of age are most at risk from having strokes, although 25% of strokes occur in people who are under 65. It is also possible for children to have strokes.
Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States. More than 140,000 people each year die from stroke and each year, approximately 795,000 people suffer a stroke.
In Canada, in 2000, stroke accounted for 7 per cent of all deaths. It is estimated that 80 per cent of Canadians have at least one of the risk factors for heart or cardio-vascular disease. Every 7 minutes a Canadian dies from stroke.
If you are south Asian, African or Caribbean, your risk of stroke is higher. This is partly because of a predisposition (a natural tendency) to developing diabetes and heart disease, which are two conditions that can cause strokes.
Smoking, being overweight, lack of exercise and a poor diet are also risk factors for stroke. Also, conditions that affect the circulation of the blood, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, atrial fibrillation (an irregular heartbeat) and diabetes, increase your risk of having a stroke.
There are two main causes of strokes:
- Ischemic (accounting for over 80% of all cases) – this is where the blood supply is stopped due to a blood clot
- Hemorrhagic – this is where a weakened blood vessel supplying the brain bursts and causes brain damage
There is also a related condition known as a transient ischemic attack (TIA), where the supply of blood to the brain is temporarily interrupted, causing a ‘mini-stroke’. TIAs should be treated seriously as they are often a warning sign that a stroke is coming.
The signs and symptoms of a stroke vary from person to person but they usually begin suddenly. As different parts of your brain control different parts of your body, your symptoms will depend upon the part of your brain that has been affected and the extent of the damage.
The main stroke symptoms can be remembered with the word FAST: Face-Arms-Speech-Time.
- Face: the face may have dropped on one side, the person may not be able to smile or their mouth or eye may have drooped
- Arms: the person with suspected stroke may not be able to lift one or both arms and keep them there because of arm weakness or numbness
- Speech: their speech may be slurred or garbled, or the person may not be able to talk at all despite appearing to be awake
- Time: it is time to consult professional help immediately if you see any of these signs or symptoms. Call an ambulance and get to a hospital.
It is important for everyone to be aware of these signs and symptoms. If you live with or care for somebody in a high-risk group, such as someone who is elderly or has diabetes or high blood pressure, being aware of the symptoms is even more important.
Symptoms in the FAST test identify about nine out of 10 strokes.
Other signs and symptoms may include:
- numbness or weakness resulting in complete paralysis of one side of the body
- sudden loss of vision
- communication problems, difficulty talking and understanding what others are saying
- problems with balance and coordination
- difficulty swallowing
- sudden and severe headache, unlike any the person has had before, especially if associated with neck stiffness
- blacking out (in severe cases)
The symptoms of a transient ischemic attack (TIA) are the same as for a stroke but only last from between a few minutes to a few hours, then completely disappear. However, never ignore a TIA as it is a serious warning sign that there is a problem with the blood supply to your brain.
There is about a one in 10 chance that those who have a TIA will experience a full stroke during the four weeks following the TIA. If you have had a TIA, you should contact your licensed health practitioner as soon as possible.
Stroke is a largely preventable condition. Many of the key risk factors can be reduced by making lifestyle changes.
There are some risk factors for stroke that cannot be changed, including:
- age: you are more likely to have a stroke if you are over 65 years old. However, about a quarter of strokes happen in younger people.
- family history: if a close relative (parent, grandparent, brother or sister) has had a stroke, your risk is likely to be higher
- ethnicity: if you are south Asian, African or Caribbean, your risk of stroke is higher, partly because rates of diabetes and high blood pressure are higher in these groups
- your medical history: if you have previously had a stroke, TIA or heart attack, your risk of stroke is higher
Ischemic strokes occur when blood clots block the flow of blood to the brain. Blood clots typically form in areas where the arteries have been narrowed or blocked by fatty cholesterol-containing deposits known as plaques. This narrowing of the arteries is caused by atherosclerosis.
As we get older our arteries become narrower but certain risk factors can dangerously accelerate the process. Risk factors include:
- high blood pressure (hypertension)
- high cholesterol levels (often caused by a high-fat diet, but can result from inherited factors)
- a family history of heart disease or diabetes
- excessive alcohol intake (which can also make obesity and high blood pressure worse, as well as causing heart damage and an irregular heartbeat)
Diabetes is also a risk factor, particularly if it is poorly controlled, as the excess glucose in the blood can damage the arteries.
Another possible cause of ischemic stroke is an irregular heartbeat (atrial fibrillation), which can cause blood clots that become lodged in the brain. Atrial fibrillation can be caused by:
- high blood pressure
- coronary artery disease
- mitral valve disease (disease of the heart valve)
- cardiomyopathy (wasting of the heart muscle)
- pericarditis (inflammation of the bag surrounding the heart)
- hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland)
- excessive alcohol intake
- drinking lots of caffeine; for example, tea, coffee and energy drinks
Hemorrhagic strokes (also known as cerebral hemorrhaged or intracranial hemorrhages) usually occur when a blood vessel in the brain bursts and bleeds into the substance of the brain (intra-cerebral hemorrhage). In about 5% of cases, the bleeding occurs on the surface of the brain (subarachnoid hemorrhage).
The main cause of hemorrhagic stroke is high blood pressure (hypertension), which can weaken the arteries in the brain and make them prone to split or rupture.
The risk factors for high blood pressure include:
- being overweight
- drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
- a lack of exercise
- stress, which may cause a temporary rise in blood pressure
Another important risk factor for hemorrhagic stroke is treatment with medicines given to prevent blood clots, for example, warfarin.
Hemorrhagic stroke can also occur from rupture of an aneurysm (a balloon-like expansion of a blood vessel) and cerebral blood vessel malformations.
A traumatic head injury can also cause bleeding into the brain. In most cases, the cause is obvious but bleeding into the lining of the brain (subdural hematoma) can occur without any obvious signs of trauma, especially in the elderly. The symptoms and signs can then mimic stroke.
Less than 1% of strokes are caused by a blood clot (thrombosis) in the veins of the brain (the cerebral veins). Abnormalities of clotting increase the risk of this type of stroke.
As with all diseases this did not happen overnight. The very first thing you must do is see a licensed health professional. Find a list of practitioners in your local area here
Here are some things you can discuss with your practitioner:
- Eliminate Candida: Click here to find out how
- Do the Hydrogen Peroxide Protocol to strengthen the immune system:
- Drink 3oz of Colloidal Silver, three or four times a day for 60 days www.colloidsforlife.com/ Silver has long been recognised as a powerful natural antibiotic. Colloidal silver is silver that has been removed electronically from its source and then suspended in water. It is used to treat a myriad of diseases.
- Go on a fast to clear your system of toxic waste www.wecarespa.com
- We recommend regular colonics to remove toxicity from the body. Read more about colonics by clicking here. Find a practitioner here.
- Most of the water that we drink is very acidic and in order to heal our bodies need a more alkaline state. During the program drink alkalized water, which you can buy from Real Waterwww.drinkrealwater.com/
Diet, along with proper nutritional supplementation, regular exercise, and conscious healthy lifestyle choices, including low stress and stress management, no smoking of any kind and little to moderate amounts of alcohol, are important self-care choices you can make to ensure you remain healthy. Unfortunately, poor diet is one of the most common health problems in the United States. To protect yourself against stroke, you need to eliminate your intake of all unhealthy fats, especially trans-fatty acids and hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats and oils. This means not eating foods that contain margarine, vegetable shortening, and lard, as well as all fried and commercially processed foods, which are typically high in unhealthy fat content. Avoid all foods that are irradiated and/or that contain additives and preservatives, as well as foods grown with the use of pesticides, herbicides, steroids, and antibiotics, and all foods that contain powdered eggs or powdered milk. Eliminate all refined sugars and simple carbohydrates, which not only reduce immune function, and therefore your body’s ability to fight off infections linked to heart disease, but can also dramatically increase levels of C-reactive protein, homocysteine, blood glucose, insulin, and triglycerides, all of which are markers for heart disease. In addition, eliminate all refined salt which will dramatically reduce your overall sodium intake; instead use Himalayan mountain, Krystal sea salt or other unrefined salt, and minimize your intake of red meat, milk, and dairy products, as well as caffeine (no more than two cups of coffee per day). Limit your alcohol intake to no more than one glass of red wine per day, preferably with a meal.
Emphasize a diet rich in organic whole foods, especially plenty of fresh, raw fruits and vegetables, oats, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and organic, free-range poultry and wild-caught, cold water fish, such as halibut, mackerel, orange roughy, and salmon (avoid farm raised salmon). Beans and legumes are also advisable due to their high fibre content. Also be sure to use healthy oils such as extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, flaxseed oil, and fish oils for the essential fatty acids they contain. Choosing organic, rather than conventionally produced foods gives you a definite advantage.
Throughout the day, drink plenty of pure, filtered water, and avoid drinking—as well as bathing, and showering in—unfiltered tap water, because tap water contains heavy metals and pesticide residues that can contribute to and worsen heart disease.
Research has shown that one of the best diets is the Mediterranean diet, which is high in plant foods eaten with garlic, onions, extra virgin olive oil, and moderate amounts of whole grains, fish, and poultry, along with an occasional glass of red wine at meal time. The near-vegetarian “reversal diet” developed by noted health author and researcher Dean Ornish, M.D., has also been clinically proven to help improve overall heart health. It emphasizes meals composed primarily of fresh vegetables and whole grains, and eliminates nearly all cholesterol-containing foods, animal fats, and oils. Dr. Ornish recommends that, for best results, his patients also commit to an exercise program and stress reduction techniques, such as meditation.
Especially good foods include seafood which is rich in omega-3 fatty acid, fresh vegetables such as broccoli, sprouts, and kelp. Avoid deep-fried foods and limit your intake of foods that contain plant sources of oestrogens, such as soybeans and peanuts, as well as alcoholic beverages.
- Do not consume any artificial sweeteners, such as Splenda, NutraSweet or Aspartame
- Do not consume high fructose corn syrup or mono-sodium glutamate.
- Do not drink any carbonated beverages.
- Avoid all fast food restaurants.
- Avoid all canned food.
- Eliminate conventional dairy products. The best dairy products are raw, unpasteurised and homogenised dairy from grass fed cows. If this is unavailable, then buy organic dairy.
- Avoid conventional beef. The best beef is organic grass fed beef. www.grasslandbeef.com/StoreFront.bok?affld=104400 The second best is organic meat; this includes beef, veal, lamb, chicken and turkey.
- Reduce salt intake
- Take Vitamin D3 50,000-100,000 International Units a day http:/// for a period of up to 4 weeks. Vitamin D has been shown to be a key factor in maintaining health cholesterol levels in the blood as high cholesterol can be the result of inadequate exposure to the sun.
- Beta Carotene – Research done at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland found it could lower heart disease by up to 50 per cent.
- Niacin – Vitamin B3 – known to lower cholesterol levels
- Vitamin B6 – helpful in preventing strokes and heart attacks, prevents oxidization of cholesterol
- VitaminB12 – associated with lowering homocysteine (a non-protein amino acid) levels. Homocysteine is one of the major contributing factors in heart disease.
- Folic Acid – essential for proper metabolism of homocysteine
- Vitamin C – prevents formation of oxysterols
- Coenzyme 10 – strengthens heart muscles
- Proanthocyanidin (PCA) – antioxidant derived from pine bark (or grape seeds) which enhances heart health
- Wholefood supplements are the best way of ensuring your nutritional needs are met. The best we know on the market is Kevin Trudeau’s “KT Daily” product. You can find more details herekevintrudeaudailylifesessentials.com/
- Omega 3s:
- Intravenous Chelation
- Calcium and Magnesium
- Vitamin E (Unique E) www.acgrace.com
- Able Heal
- Deer Antler Velvet www.royalvelvetforlife.com
The importance of specific nutrients to overall heart health has been clearly established scientifically for at least fifty years, due to the work of such pioneering researchers as two-time Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling, Ph.D., whose work showed that heart disease is primarily due to nutritional deficiencies. Dr. Pauling maintained that heart disease was one of the most preventable of all diseases, despite the enormous personal and financial toll is takes each year. His own personal nutritional heart disease protective remedy was as follows: 6 to 18 mg of vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid, divided into three daily dosages and taken just before or with meals, along with 3 to 6 grams of the amino acid lysine, taken once per day. To this remedy, Matthias Rath, MD, one of Dr. Pauling’s associates, suggests adding the amino acid proline once per day at a dose of between 0.5 to 2 grams.
Superoxide dismutase (SOD) is also beneficial.
Other important nutrients for preventing and helping to reverse heart disease include:
beta carotene, a precursor to vitamin A, which has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease by as much as 50 percent (for best results, supplement with a mixed carotenoid formula for more comprehensive antioxidant protection);
vitamin B3 (niacin), which lowers cholesterol, reduces overall heart disease risk, and helps to increase the longevity of people who have already suffered a heart attack;
vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), which helps to neutralize homocysteine and inhibit platelet stickiness, thus protecting against arteriosclerosis;
vitamin B12, which also helps to protect against homocysteine;
vitamin C, which protects against cholesterol oxidation, infection, and inflammation, all major risk factors for heart disease, and can also help to dissolve unhealthy blood clots. Citrus fruits, which contain Vitamin C are beneficial in cutting stroke risk.
vitamin E, which can significantly reduce the risk of heart disease and also protects against abnormal blood clotting and cholesterol oxidation, as well as helping to repair the cellular lining of blood vessels and to inhibit platelet stickiness (Caution: High dosages of vitamin E are not recommended for people with high blood pressure, rheumatic heart disease, or ischemic heart disease except under close medical supervision);
folic acid, which is vital for reducing and properly metabolizing homocysteine;
coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), an important nutrient for maintaining heart strength, providing energy for the overall cardiovascular system, and for inhibiting oxidation of cholesterol due to its potent antioxidant properties;
proanthocyanidan (PCA), which is contained in pycnogenol and grape seed extract, and which helps to prevent cholesterol oxidation while protecting the inner walls of the arteries and inhibiting platelet stickiness and abnormal blood clotting;
calcium, which helps to reduce platelet stickiness and reduce unhealthy cholesterol levels; chromium, which helps to reduce triglyceride and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels, while increasing HDL (“good) cholesterol;
magnesium (for best results, use in the form of magnesium malate, glycinate, taurate, or aspartate), which helps to keep arteries smooth and properly dilated, improve blood flow and the ability of the heart to pump blood, protect against arrhythmia, inhibit arterial calcification, inhibit platelet stickiness, and maintain healthy overall cholesterol levels;
potassium, which protects against high blood pressure much more safely and effectively than blood pressure medications;
selenium, another potent antioxidant that helps to reduce platelet stickiness.
Zinc – research has shown stroke victims recover quickly by taking zinc
In addition to lysine and proline, certain other amino acids can also be helpful for protecting against heart disease. This is especially true of L-arginine and L-carnitine. L-arginine helps to protect against high blood pressure, and has been scientifically shown to improve overall heart function in patients with congestive heart disease. If administered immediately after a heart attack, it can also help repair damaged heart muscle. In addition, L-arginine helps the body to produce nitric acid, which helps to maintain the smoothness and integrity of the blood vessels.
Besides helping to lower triglyceride levels, L-carnitine also enhances the heart’s ability to properly contract and pump blood, as well as significantly reducing the risk of angina and arrhythmia, and improve recovery from heart attack.
Other useful nutrients include fish and omega-3 oils, which protect against chronic inflammation, act as natural blood thinners, and help to reduce harmful cholesterol and triglyceride levels; gamma linoleic acid, which also helps to protect against chronic inflammation and elevated C-reactive protein levels; policosanol, which reduces LDL cholesterol and lipoprotein(a) and protects and improves recovery from angina; and SAMe (S-Adenosylmethionine) and trimethylglycine (TMG), both of which are very effective in reducing homecysteine.
Prescription and non-prescription medication:
What non-prescription and prescription drugs are you taking? Your non-prescription and prescription are partially the reason that you have this illness or disease – you need to get off these medications but do so only under the guidance of a licensed health care practitioner.
We know that when the body is out of balance, energy doesn’t flow, leading blockages and eventually disease. Here are some things you can do to combat stress and restore balance:
- Go to a Dr Morter BEST (Bio-Energetic Synchronisation Technique) Practitioner.
- Sign up for Energetic Re-Balancing: 2 practitioners to consider are:
- Stephen Lewis, founder of the Aim Program. Find out more by clicking here.
- . Find out more by clicking here.
- Consider using Mary Millers Iching System Products – ichingsystemsinstruments.com
- Reiki healing is very powerful in releasing stress and emotional baggage. Find a practitioner here.
- Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) has had remarkable results in dissolving stress. Find a local practitioner here or go to www.thetappingsolution.com or www.tftrx.com
- Try Hypnotherapy to relax the mind. Find a practitioner here.
Stress Management: Learning how to reduce and properly manage stress is essential for helping to protect against stroke and heart disease, especially for anyone who is suffering from high blood pressure. Research conducted by Dr. Dean Ornish and others has found that stress reduction not only helps prevent heart disease, but can also help to reverse it, especially when used in conjunction with a healthy diet and regular program of exercise.
Stress reduction techniques are also very helpful for dealing with emotions such as anger, depression, and hopelessness. Such emotions, if not properly expressed and dealt with, can significantly increase the risk of heart disease if they become chronic. Research has shown, for example, that people who are habitually angry and prone to lose their temper have nearly twice as high a risk of developing heart disease, compared to people who don’t have anger issues. In addition, homocysteine levels are often twice as high in people who are habitually angry, compared to normal people. Similar increases in heart disease risk have also been found in people who are habitually depressed and/or beset with feelings of hopelessness, especially men and the elderly.
Holistic health practitioners help their patients accomplish stress reduction through the use of various mind/body medicine techniques, such as biofeedback, hypnotherapy, and relaxation exercises. Meditation is another form of stress management that can be highly effective in reducing high blood pressure levels, thereby protecting overall cardiovascular health. So much so, in fact, that since 1984 it has been recommended by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) over conventional blood pressure medications for cases of mild high blood pressure. There are many ways to meditate. One of the easiest is simply to sit comfortably in a chair with your eyes closed as you focus on your breathing. Do this for five to ten minutes twice a day and gradually extend each session to 20 or 30 minutes. To enhance your efforts, concentrate on mentally repeating a peaceful phrase each time you inhale and exhale, allowing all other thoughts to arise and pass without becoming involved in them. At first, this may seem difficult, but with committed practice you will eventually find yourself able to do so while experiencing greater degrees of calm and peace.
We recommend you consult a licensed practitioner who may wish to discuss the following:
Gunja taila is one of the effective external applications in paralysis. It is prepared by boiling together, the pulp made of equal quantities of Gunja seeds (rattee or ghunghachee) and long pepper, in til oil or mustard oil and buttermilk. After evaporation of the water content, it is bottled and used as a liniment.
Take the decoction of the bark of the root of drumstick with fried asafoetida and rock salt in doses of 20 ml. This should be taken for a minimum period of 40 days.
Dashmoolaarishta is very effective for toning up the nervous system. About four teaspoons of it mixed with an equal quantity of water is given twice daily until the symptoms subside. Mahaa narayana taila is good for external massage.
Rasoon (Garlic) – is used in Ayurveda to treat digestive disorders and promote cardiovascular health. According to “The Way of Ayurvedic Herbs: The Most Complete Guide to Natural Healing” by Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa and Michael Tierra, garlic is recommended to treat atherosclerosis due to its potent anticoagulant, antithrombotic and cholesterol-lowering properties. Drugs.com — which provides peer-reviewed medical information to consumers — credits a compound called allicin in garlic with powerful antioxidant properties as well. Garlic cloves may be consumed raw or cooked in the amount of two cloves a day.
Ardraka (Ginger) – the root of the plant botanically known as Zingiber officinale, has been used since antiquity in both Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda to treat a multitude of ailments, including nausea, arthritis and infections. Known as “the universal medicine,” ginger is referred to as nagara when dried and ardraka when fresh. A group of compounds called gingerols are responsible for most of ginger’s therapeutic effects. Khalsa and Tierra report that ginger increases circulation, and credit it with helping lower triglycerides and serum cholesterol in animal studies. For maximum benefit, use ginger along with garlic. Drugs.com reports that clinical trials have used dosages of 250 to 1 g of ginger, three to four times a day. Khalsa and Tierra advise brewing 1 tsp of the chopped fresh root as a tea and drinking it three times a day.
Haldi (Turmeric) – derived from the root of the plant botanically known as Curcuma longa, a perennial member of the ginger family cultivated throughout Asia. Turmeric is used not only as a spice and primary ingredient in mustard and curry but as an herbal medicine; it is particularly prized in Ayurveda, where it is known as haldi. Drugs. com credits the active ingredient in turmeric, curcumin, with cancer-inhibiting, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Animal studies have supported turmeric’s actions against atherosclerosis. In an article published in “Iranian Journal of Medical Hypotheses and Ideas,” the authors proposed that curcumin’s anti-inflammatory qualities can help manage atherosclerosis by stabilizing vulnerable rupture-prone plaques, thereby playing a role in preventing acute coronary syndromes.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
We recommend you consult a licensed TCM practitioner who can advise on treatment tailored to your individual needs. From a TCM Theory perspective, stroke is related to the Liver, Spleen and Kidneysystems. The predisposing factors for stroke may take years to develop and are often the result of emotional and physical strain, overwork, poor diet and lack of relaxation. These lifestyle habits deplete the body of vitality which often leads to an accumulation of Phlegm and/or Wind. Over time these internal factors of phlegm and wind build to varying degrees and may culminate in a stroke.
Chinese medicine distinguishes two general types of stroke: the most severe type attacks the internal organs as well as the energy pathways (meridians); the milder type attacks only the meridians. In treating the severe type, acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas are combined with Western drugs to relax spasm, subdue Wind, open the orifices, resolve Phlegm, and lower blood pressure. Patients with the milder type of stroke are treated primarily with acupuncture to open the meridians and promote Chi and Blood flow.
Acupuncture is the most popular treatment modality for stroke patients in China, used effectively on 85% of the stroke patients there. When Margaret Naeser, a neurology professor at Boston University School of Medicine, went to China in the 1980s, she was surprised to see that acupuncture treatments were considered to be the most important part of stroke rehabilitation at Chinese hospitals. She was even more impressed when she saw how effective such treatment was, and began to study acupuncture scientifically when she returned home. Since then, scientific evidence has been accumulating in the West. A controlled study conducted at the Lund University Hospital in Sweden provided several interesting findings. It found that a group of 38 patients who received acupuncture treatments twice a week for ten weeks reported significant improvements in the areas of walking, balance, emotions, quality of life, ease of daily activity, and mobility in comparison with a control group of 40 patients who did not receive acupuncture treatments. The Acupuncture Group spent fewer days in nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities than the Non-Acupuncture Group, with an average savings of $26,000 per patient. In the follow-up period, it was found that one year after suffering their stroke and receiving treatment, 89% of the patients in the Acupuncture Group were living at home vs. 66% of the patients in the Non-Acupuncture Group.
Scientific studies indicate that acupuncture can: facilitate nerve regeneration; decrease blood viscosity; prevent the aggregation of blood cells, dilate blood vessels by triggering the release of hormones; and help surviving nerve cells find new pathways, effectively by-passing damaged parts of the brain. Acupuncture has also been found to be helpful in the treatment of headache, dizziness and hypertension in stroke patients.
In TCM, the primary focus of herbal treatment is focused on blood. An herbalist will choose herbs to prevent clots from forming, remove blood stasis, improve blood flow and blood quality, and support the blood vessels. Moschus (She Xiang) is a Chinese herb that is used to stimulate blood circulation. This herb is one of the strongest herbs in traditional Chinese medicine to awaken consciousness. It does this by stimulating the sensory orifices in the brain, thereby reducing cerebral oedema and increasing blood flow to the brain. Styrax (Su He Xiang) can also stimulate the sensory orifices of the brain. Styrax has an antiplatelet action though and should be used with caution for those patients on blood thinners, as it might increase the function of those drugs.
Rhizoma Gastrodiae (Tian Ma) works on the cardiovascular system by increasing blood flow to cardiac muscle. It can be used for almost any case of hypertension and also treats the related symptoms. Ramulus Uncariae cum Uncis (Gou Teng) also helps with blood pressure, but does so by slowing the heartbeat and vasodilatation through relaxing the aorta.
Rhizoma Ligustici Chuanxiong (Chuan Xiong) reduces the number of marked platelets, but also lowers blood pressure through vasodilatation. It can increase blood flow to the heart and decrease oxygen use by the heart muscles. Rhizoma Curcumae (E Zhu) contains essential oil that prevents/prolongs the form of a clot and has been shown to be helpful to patients with coronary artery disease (CAD and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Rhizoma Curcumae works to break up blood clots very strongly and is effective in cases where other herbs have failed.
A classic herbal formula that is hundreds of years old is Gastrodia and Unicaria Decoction (Tian Ma Gou Teng Yin) which can be used when a patient is experiencing a lot of stress, irritability, hypertension, hypercholesteremia, sudden hemiphlegia, unilateral numbness, headache, dizziness, and weakness. The ingredients include Rhizoma Gastrodiae (Tian Ma) and Ramulus Uncariae cum Uncis (Gou Teng) mentioned above as well as other herbs that help “calm the liver,” “extinguish wind,” and “remove blood stasis.” A balance of herbs within a formula is important for the body.
Aromatherapy can help relieve the muscular paralysis that can result from stroke. Lavender, rosemary, and basil essential oils are helpful in this regard. Massage the stroke victim`s spinal column and paralyzed parts of the body with of one quart of rubbing alcohol containing one ounce each of lavender, rosemary, and basil.
The essential oils of garlic, lavender, peppermint, marjoram, rose, and rosemary can help to strengthen the heart muscle, while lavender, melissa, neroli, and ylang-ylang are useful for balancing abnormal heart palpitations.
We recommend you consult a licensed practitioner to ensure you receive the right treatment for you and your symptoms. Homeopathic treatments are intended to support recovery from a stroke, rather than to treat an acute episode and the following may be used:
First aid for stroke, if the person loses consciousness:
Aconite 30c: if the person is very fearful
Opium 6c: if the person has collapsed; face is dark and flushed; loud, “snoring” breathing; cheeks puff out as person exhales
Arnica 6c: Once the person’s condition is stable, give every 4 hours for up to 3 days.
In Case of Emergency: give one of the following strength every fifteen minutes for up to ten doses during a stroke while waiting for medical assistance. You should call for medical assistance immediately:
Belladonna 30c: if the person’s face is hot and flushed, if there is headache, if the eyes are wide and staring
Nux Vomica 6c: at first signs of attack, especially if brought on by a heavy meal or alcohol
Aconite 30c: for a person who is panicky and afraid of dying once he or she realizes what is happening
Opium 6c: In later stages, if the person is lapsing into consciousness, face is bluish and congested, and breathing is heavy and labored, take four times daily for up to two weeks immediately after a stroke.
Arnica 6c: to be taken four times daily for up to three weeks during recovery.
Baryta 6c: if the person is elderly and physically and mentally weak.
Gelsemium 6c: where main aftereffects are numbness and trembling, in- ability to speak, pain at back of head.
Lachesis 6c: if speech is very slow.
Hyoscyamus 6c: if speech is unintelligible, and person has a tendency to clutch private parts.
Aurum 6c: if the person is clearly depressed.
After Your Stroke:
The best approach to treating the aftermath of stroke homeopathically is to consult a qualified homeopathic practitioner who can prescribe a constitutional remedy. The remedies that follow can be helpful as well.
Aconite and Arnica:
Aconite can help alleviate the panic, fright, and shock that accompany a stroke.
Arnica helps to initiate bodywide healing.
Dose: As soon as your doctor signals that you can take something by mouth, take one dose of Aconite 200x or 30c. Follow this with one dose of Arnica 30x or 15c three to four times daily for three to five days.
Aurum muriaticum is good if your predominant symptom is depression. Take one dose of Aurum muriaticum 30x or 15c three times daily for up to three days, as needed. If you notice an improvement before that time, stop taking the remedy.
Baryta carbonica is helpful for both physical and mental weakness and fatigue following a stroke. Take one dose of Baryta carbonica 30x or 15c three times daily for up to three days, as needed. If you notice an improvement before that time, stop taking the remedy.
Gelsemium can help if you have numbness and trembling, and have lost the ability to speak. Take one dose of Gelsemium 30x or 15c three times daily for up to three days, as needed. If you notice an improvement before that time, stop taking the remedy.
Cocculus can help with any dizziness or vertigo that may occur.
The following herbs can help improve lost circulation to the arms, hands, legs, and feet: use elder flowers, hyssop, rosemary, and yarrow. Damiana, lavender, rosemary, and Siberian ginseng can help enhance and nourish the nervous system.
Useful herbs for protecting the health of the cardiovascular system include:
Foxglove, from which the heart medication digitalis is derived; hawthorn berry has been shown to enhance blood circulation to and from the heart and to relieve arterial spasms;
Garlic helps to dissolve clots and also acts as both a potent antioxidant and natural antibiotic; ginger has antioxidant properties and has been shown to reduce cholesterol and decrease the stickiness of blood platelets;
Olive leaf extract, an antioxidant, helps to lower high blood pressure and maintain the health of the capillary walls;
Motherwort helps to prevent and reverse abnormal heart palpitations;
Ginkgo biloba acts as a natural blood thinner and can improve blood flow, as well as aid cognitive and memory function for those whose mental faculties are diminished as a result of stroke and/or surgical interventions such as bypass surgery.
The following herbal tonic can also help protect against heart disease: equal parts of ginkgo biloba, hawthorn berry, and linden flower, combined as a tincture. Add ½ teaspoon of this mixture to a few ounces of pure, filtered water, and take three times a day. For more powerful effects, you can simply take it straight without water.
Chelation therapy is a safe and effective natural alternative to both angioplasty and coronary bypass surgery, and approved as a primary treatment for poisoning due to heavy metal toxicity in the body. An abundance of scientific research also shows that chelation therapy is effective for both preventing and treating heart conditions caused or exacerbated by arteriorsclerosis, including angina, heart attack, and stroke because of its ability to reduce blockages in the arteries. Research shows that chelation therapy improves overall artery health by more than 93 percent in terms of its ability to remove plaque and calcium deposits from the arteries’ inner lining. It also offers more effective treatment that coronary bypass in an estimated 85 percent of all cases.
The reason chelation therapy works so effectively in this regard is because of its ability to rid the arteries of heavy metals that can contribute to vulnerable plaque, which causes 85 percent of all cases of heart disease, while simultaneously improving the delivery of oxygen to heart tissues, which is vital to heart health. In order to best accomplish these goals, leading chelation experts, such as Garry Gordon, MD, DO, developer of the modern chelation therapy protocol, recommend a combination of intravenous (I.V.) chelation treatments along with ongoing oral chelation supplements.
The use of digestive enzymes with your meals, as well as a specific enzyme product known as Wobenzym-N is also recommended. Digestive enzymes aid your body in digesting the foods you eat, as well as improving your body’s ability to absorb and make use of the nutrients they contain. Wobenzym-N, which is taken away from meals, is a potent enzyme-bioflavonoid product that enters the bloodstream, where it helps to attack infectious pathogens, reduce chronic inflammation, and regulate markers for heart disease, such as C-reactive protein and fibrinogen. It has been shown to provide all of the same benefits as aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), without any of their side effects, including death by bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract.
Regular exercise has been shown to reduce unhealthy high blood pressure, reduce unhealthy LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels, increase levels of healthy HDL cholesterol, enhance oxygen supply to the body’s cells and tissues, and improve immune function, which helps to protect against the infectious microorganisms that can cause heart disease. In addition, exercise is an excellent way of improving overall mood and reducing stress, both of which are important in safeguarding yourself against heart disease. What follows are some tips for making regular exercise easier to achieve.
1. Make it your goal to walk, swim, skate, jump rope, aerobic dance, run, or ride a bike, three times a week for at least 30 minutes each time.
2. To improve lean muscle mass, thereby also improving the health of your heart, engage in a strength-training program twice a week. For best results, make sure the program includes a mix of calisthenics and weight training that exercises all of the major muscle groups of your body.
3. To help you abide by a regular exercise program, do one or more of the following: Ask a friend to participate with you; make scheduling each exercise session a high priority; and work out while listening to music or a motivational tape to make your exercise routine more enjoyable.
Note: If suffer from poor health or are over the age of 40, check with your physician before beginning an exercise program.
The following juice combinations act as healthy heart tonics: Carrot, celery, cucumber, and beet, with small amounts of garlic and/or hawthorn berries; the juice of blueberries, blackberries, black currant, and/or red grapes.
If you smoke, stop immediately. Also avoid all exposure to secondhand cigarette smoke, and minimize your exposure to environmental pollutants. In addition, learn how to effectively manage stress, such as participating in a meditation or biofeedback program, and commit yourself to at least three 30-minute sessions of aerobic exercise each week. If you are overweight, also seek help in safely and permanently shedding excess pounds.
A variety of oxygen therapies have been shown to provide significant benefits for patients with heart disease. Hydrogen peroxide therapy, administered intravenously (I.V.), for example, has been shown to reduce the buildup of plaque in the arteries, as well as improving the heart’s ability to properly contract and receive oxygen. The late Charles Farr, M.D., Ph.D., a pioneer in the use of hydrogen peroxide therapy, helped many patients suffering from high-output heart failure (a condition in which the heart is unable to function properly despite pumping high amounts of blood) by administering I.V. hydrogen peroxide therapy in alternation with I.V. chelation therapy. He reported success alternating treatments of I.V. diluted hydrogen peroxide and chelation therapy to bring patients out of high-output heart failure (where the heart fails even though it is pumping a high amount of blood).
Ozone therapy has been shown to improve overall cardiovascular health. It is especially useful for treating problems in the circulatory system and for dissolving plaque in the arteries and veins. Most often, ozone is injected directly into the arteries or veins for this purpose.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is another form of oxygen therapy. It is most useful for helping patients to recover from stroke. For this purpose, stroke patients are placed inside a hyperbaric oxygen chamber. Once inside, the atmospheric pressure is increased, so that increased levels of oxygen flood into the body’s cells and tissues, making it easier for the body to restore itself by reducing swollen tissues and improving oxygen supply to the brain. According to David A. Steenblock, M.S., D.O., an expert in the use of HBOT for stroke, HBOT applied within 24 hours after a stroke can reduce stroke damage by as much as 80 percent. Subsequent ongoing treatments can reduce stroke symptoms even more, and in many cases result in a complete recovery. Dr. Steenblock reports that patients have experienced significant improvement in their symptoms even after receiving HBOT for the first time 15 years after they suffered a stroke.
In addition to the above benefits, all forms of oxygen therapy are highly effective for eliminating the chronic infections that can play such an important role in the onset and continuation of heart disease. In this capacity, oxygen therapy can also help protect against vulnerable plaque, which is formed in part due to such infections.
Alternative Professional Care:
The following therapies can also be helpful for treating and preventing heart disease: Ayurveda, Biofeedback Training and Neurotherapy, Biological Dentistry (for removal of dental amalgams that contain mercury), Bodywork (acupressure, Alexander Technique, reflexology, shiatsu, massage), Chiropractic, Detoxification Therapy, Environmental Medicine, Guided Imagery, Hypnotherapy, Magnetic Therapy, Mind/Body Medicine, Naturopathic Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine and Yoga. (See Glossary for descriptions of these Alternative Therapies.)
Diet soda and links to stroke: www.examiner.com/article/university-of-miami-researchers-expose-diet-soda-stroke-hazard
Yoga helps stroke victims recover: yogauonline.com/yogatherapy/yoga-for-heart-disease/736060112-new-study-yoga-therapy-helps-stroke-victims-recover-mor
Reflexology and stroke (a heart-warming story): wendycoad.hubpages.com/hub/Reflexology-and-Stroke-A-Students-Story-about-her-Beloved-Dad
Stroke recovery quickened by zinc: www.empowher.com/stroke/content/stroke-recovery-may-be-quickened-zinc-supplementation
Alternative therapies for stroke: http://www.everydayhealth.com/stroke/alternative-therapies-for-stroke-treatment.aspx
Paralysis treatment in Ayurveda: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0s_K7s8Pbo
Yoga may benefit stroke victims: www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/yoga-exercise-benefits-stroke-victim
Potassium cuts risk of stroke: www.bmj.com/content/323/7311/497.extract
Cut out salt to reduce stroke risks: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2782060/
Eating tomatoes may lower the risk of stroke: www.examiner.com/article/eating-tomatoes-may-lower-the-risk-of-stroke
Further Information (links and books)
Strokes: A home treatment that can cure paralysis and stroke damage by Sam Biser; Eating for a Healthy Heart by Robert Povey;The John Hopkins Complete Guide for Preventing and Reversing Heart Disease, Peter Kwiterovich; Preventing Silent Heart Disease, Harold L. Karpman; Bypassing Bypass, Elmer Cranton; Dr Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease, Dean Ornish
Andrea Butje | Aromahead email@example.com – aromatherapy
Carrie Vitt firstname.lastname@example.org – organic food recipes.
David Spector-NSR/USA email@example.com – meditation, stress
judith hoad firstname.lastname@example.org – herbalist.
Kath May email@example.com – reiki, tai chi.
Lillian Bridges firstname.lastname@example.org – Chinese medicine, living naturally.
Monika email@example.com – aromatherapy.
Rakesh GAC@AyurvedicLifeStyles.com – Ayurvedic Practitioner.