Holistic Health Blog
Dr. Cathy Rosenbaum

Thank You COVID-19 Healthcare Workers!

THANK YOU to all healthcare workers helping us navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic. Hats off to physicians, pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, PAs, nurses, allied health colleagues, all staff laboring in the daily trenches wherever you are, whatever you do. You are compassionate, selfless, strong servants. So proud of you. Incredibly grateful for your talents. Take good care of yourselves, and know we LOVE YOU!

Inspirational Living During Times of Crisis

Simple in actions and thoughts, you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.

— Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
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On March 16, 2020, USA Today ran a list of 100 things to do while quarantined inside. Here are some excerpts, with a few more from Dr. Cathy.  May they bring you peace in this challenging time.

1. Meditate. Try lying down with your eyes closed, palms up, while centering on your deep breathing for solace.
2. Hand write a letter to a special family member with whom you have been estranged. If needed, seek forgiveness. After that, hand write thank you notes to service people whom you recall have gone out of their way for you. Send them a gift card.
3. Call someone you know who is shut-in all the time and offer a cheery word of encouragement and love. Listen.
4. Make a list of things for which you are grateful then read them back during your time of daily meditation.
5. Write a book with your family. Pick a character and have each member write a chapter about their adventures. Read your chapters aloud to each other.
6. Have a Scrabble tournament and don’t cheat.
7. Write a song. You could make it about your time inside and put it to the tune of “My Sharona” and replace “Sharona” with “Corona.”
8. Get into baking with “The Great British Baking Show”. Your technical challenge is baking something with the ingredients you have on hand. Share your new found recipe with an acquaintance or friend you don’t see or talk with very much. Be ready to laugh together.
9. Take lots of walks in nature to heal. Walk up and down your neighborhood and talk with neighbors who are out walking their dogs. Offer them a word of encouragement from a safe social distance (6 feet).
10. Pray for our country and our global brothers and sisters that ‘this too shall swiftly pass’ and that people around the world will take our teamwork and sense of community forward with us forever in our life journey.

2019-2020 Influenza Vaccine Composition

During the 2017-2018 flu season, there were 959,000 hospitalizations and 80,000 deaths in the USA attributed to the flu.  It’s important to get vaccinated this year!

Every ingredient in the 2019-2020 influenza vaccine has a specific purpose.

Trivalent Vaccine:
* A/Brisbane/02/2018 (H1N1) pdm09-like virus
* A/Kansas/14/2017 (H3N2)-like virus
* B/Colorado/06/2017-like virus (Victoria lineage)

Quadrivalent Vaccine:
* The above three strains PLUS B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus (Yamagata lineage)

Multi-dose influenza vials contain the preservative thimerosal (e.g. a chemical metabolized in the body to ethyl mercury).  Ethyl mercury crosses into the brain in very low amounts, but less so than methyl mercury.

Trace amounts of formaldehyde may be present from the manufacturing process.

Protein from eggs allow virus to grow before it is harvested.

Please talk with your doctor about which influenza vaccine is right for your health needs.  Additionally, many pharmacists have been trained to help immunize and educate the public on vaccine facts.

 

 

‘Your Holistic Health’ Talk Radio Show Available On Podcast Now!

Your Holistic Health, now on the Cincinnati Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired Channel (CABVI) WRRS (Radio Reading Services of Greater Cincinnati, subcarrier of WGUC), is available by podcast on Rx Integrative Solutions website under ‘radio show’, ‘CABVI’.   Each week we discuss health news, holistic health tips, and have a special guest and topic during our half-hour show hosted by Dr. Cathy Rosenbaum, holistic clinical pharmacist.  Our mission is to help keep listeners safe, feel support, and bring hope.  Please tune in.

 

Lavender (Lavendula angustifolia) Tea for Relaxation

Lavender is one of many beautiful and fragrant herbs that attracts butterflies and bumble bees, and will repel moths, mosquitos, and flies from the garden. Lavender flowers (buds) can be used as a tea for their relaxing and calming effect (Basch).

There may be as many as 160 active constituents in lavender including linalool (a terpene), linalyl acetate, B-caryophyllene, B-myrcene, alpha-ocimene, B-ocimene, and terpinen-4-ol. Calcium, iron, and vitamin A are also found in lavender.

We’re still learning about lavender’s pharmacology from animals. In a study by Harada et al, adult male mice were tested using a linalool scent delivered in a light/dark box. Some of the mice in the study had the sense of smell (active group) and others did not (control group). The mice in the active group that were exposed to the linalool scent over 30 minutes experienced anxiolysis. The control group did not. The positive effect in the active group was negated by flumazenil, a medication that reverses the effects of benzodiazepine anxiolytics like Valium, Ativan, and others. The authors concluded that the linalool effect was mediated by GABA transmission via benzodiazepine-responsive GABA receptors.

Lavender may also work by modulating T-type calcium channels in the body, providing yet another possible therapeutic effect that deserves more research in humans. Calcium channels play a role in neuron excitability, neuroprotection, sensory processes, sleep, and pain (Alaoui, Ayaz, Kopecky).

Lavender side effects may include sun sensitivity, headache, and allergic reaction, among others.

If you are consuming lavender tea, taking lavender dietary supplements, or using topical lavender essential oil in aromatherapy, please be sure to first discuss the appropriateness of this herb/essential oil with your health care provider or pharmacist to determine if it is safe and right for your health goals. This includes a thorough review by your trusted healthcare professional of any drug/lavender interactions and potential side effects.
For more information please visit https://www.drugs.com/mtm/lavender.html and https://www.gardenmandy.com/types-of-lavender-plants/.

Recipe for Lavender Tea

Add the 1 Tbsp fresh, or 1-2 tsp dried, lavender flower buds to a teacup (mug).
Bring 8 oz – 10 oz water to a boil.
Pour the hot water over the lavender flower buds, steep for 5 minutes. Place a small plate or lid over the top of the cup to keep the steam inside, further infusing the tea.
Remove the plate (lid) from the cup and add honey or agave, sweetening to taste.

Drying Out Fresh Lavender Flowers

If you want to dry out fresh lavender flower buds from your garden, harvest the lavender just before it fully blooms, and cut the flowering stalks right above the leaves. Bind the stalks with the buds into bundles and hang them upside-down in a dark, cool, and dry place for 2 and 4 weeks. Lightly brush the stalks and the lavender buds should fall off, to be stored and used later for tea.

References

1. Alaoui. Modulation of T-type Ca2+ channels by lavender and rosemary extracts. PLoS One. 2017 Oct 26;12(10): e0186864.
2. Ayaz. Neuroprotective and anti-aging potentials of essential oils from aromatic and medicinal plants. Front Aging Neurosci 2017; 9:168.
3. Harada. Linalool odor-induced anxiolytic effects in mice. Frontiers in Behav Neurosci 2018;12: Article 241.
4. Kopecky. T-type calcium channel blockers as neuroprotective agents. Pflugers Arch 2014; 466 (4): 757-765.
5. Basch. Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia Miller). J Her Pharmacother 2004;4: 63-78.

What Do Older Men, Restful Sleep, and Heart Health Have In Common?

Senior men having difficulty sleeping at night due to extended periods of interrupted breathing may be at increased risk of heart-related death.  This problem is thought to be due to poor oxygenation (study indicator) stemming from sleep apnea and other related factors, according to an Australian study in European Heart Journal (2018). Researchers Linz and Baumert reported that men with ≥ 12 minutes of oxygen saturation below 90% during their sleep cycles increased risk of heart-related death by nearly 60% in the study. The importance of restful, well-oxygenated sleep in relation to health and healing cannot be underestimated for many reasons.  If you suspect you are one of the individuals with sleep apnea or other sleep-related health issues, please talk with your primary care physician and ask for a sleep study to uncover the root cause of your problem and get help.

Using Neti Pots – Be Safe!

Neti pots can be used to clean out mucus, allergens, and debris that build up on the nose and sinus cavity. They are safe if used correctly. A recent case report involving a woman who allegedly passed away from an amoeba acquired from unsterile water used in her neti pot over many months reminds us to do diligence when preparing saline water and cleaning pots to stay safe.

Please:

* Keep your neti pot clean regardless of whether it is made of plastic, ceramic, glass, or some other material.

* Use a safe water source for the saline solution you prepare for your pot (e.g., preferably sterile or distilled water).

* Use proper technique with your neti pot to get a good rinse. If you are unsure of how to use it, contact your favorite pharmacist for a quick demo.

The Center for Disease Control tells us to wash our neti pots after each use. Some of these pots are dishwasher safe, but not all. Please read the directions on the box.

Neti pots can be hand washed with dish soap and hot water and air dried. Don’t use hand towels that contain lint to dry them, as the lint can go up your nose and cause other issues.
If you think your neti pot is contaminated, you can use a chlorine bleach solution to cleanse it, but be careful to thoroughly rinse out any soap or bleach from the pot before you reuse it. This will prevent unwanted residue getting into your nostrils.

Don’t use tap water run through a Brita filter or any home filter unless you boil it for 3 to 5 minutes and then cool it down to room temperature first. Boiled water is storable for up to 24 hours.

For more information, please visit www.apha.us/CDCSafeNetiPots.

To schedule a one hour health & wellness consultation with Dr. Cathy Rosenbaum, please visit www.rxintegrativesolutions.com or email drcathy@rxintegrativesolutions.com. Be mind body spirit healthy.