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Hormone Replacement Therapy and Black Cohosh

Modern experience with Black Cohosh dates back to the mid-1950s. In Europe, doctors concerned with finding an alternative to hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which even then had recognized unwanted side effects, reported success surrounding the treatment of menopausal symptoms.

In the early 1960s many medical reports (although not controlled clinical trials) involving over 1,400 women were published in Germany. Health care practitioners documented benefits in premenopausal and menopausal symptoms including reduction in hot flashes and improvement of “depressive moods.”

Furthering the advancements, five clinical studies since 1979 have compared Black Cohosh extracts with placebo and estrogen replacement in the treatment of menopausal symptoms. One study that was done in several clinics with information on 629 patients reported favorable results in more than three quarters of the participants after six to eight weeks of treatment. Improvements included relief of stereotypical problems: hot flashes, sweating, headache, dizziness, and rapid heartbeat. Some side effects that were not documented were reported in less than 10% of participants, but were not significant enough to stop taking.

Black Cohosh was actually introduced into medicine by Native Americans, who placed a high value on it. American Indians boiled the roots in water and drank the beverage for a variety of conditions ranging from rheumatism, diseases of women, and the pain of sore throats. It’s subsequently used, especially by the Indian medicine man, for all these conditions but mostly for so-called uterine difficulties (regularity of cycles).

Scientific studies have shown that a methanol extract of black cohosh contains substances that bind to estrogen receptors of rat uteri. Cohosh extract also causes a selective reduction in luteinizing (luetinizing is a female hormone produced by the anterior lobe of the pituitary gland) hormone levels in rats. These results are generally universally interpreted to mean that this herb possesses some degree of estrogenic (stimulating and leveling) power.

A 1991 study confirmed an LH secretion inhibitory effect in both ovariectomized rats and in 110 menopausal women, demonstrating that the extract selectively suppresses luteinizing hormone secretion in menopausal women.

A recent Asian study reported positive effects of two Asian Cohosh species, on calcium and phosphate levels plus bone mineral density in rats. The findings concluded that these extracts have potential for the treatment of osteoporosis, particularly in menopausal women. It is recommended in Europe for various conditions, including symptoms associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS), dysmenorrhea, and menopause. Reported activities include an estrogen-like action, binding to estrogen receptors, and suppression of luteinizing hormone. Occasional stomach pain or intestinal discomfort has been reported.

In North America, it is thought that Black Cohosh balances estrogen by stabilizing it. In European herbalism it is thought to have an estrogenic action, which actively works to reduce progesterone and promote estrogen levels in the body. It is therefore used where there is a lack of estrogen and an excess of progesterone. In the musculoskeletal system it is used as an anti-inflammatory in arthritic conditions. Its sedative qualities have applications in other systems, for example in lowering blood pressure, in reducing spasm and tension, and in the respiratory system.

Native Americans used the rhizome of this cohosh as a cure for rattlesnake bites (hence its common name, rattle root) and for menstrual and labor pain. The root was also chewed as a sedative and to alleviate depression. A tea made with the herb was sprinkled in rooms to prevent evil spirits from entering. In herbalism, the root is still used as a diuretic, a cough suppressant, and to reduce inflammation and rheumatic pain.

Black Cohosh is native to Canada and the eastern states of the US, growing as far south as Florida. This herb prefers shady spots in woods and shrubby areas. The herb is now grown in Europe and can be found in the wild, having self-seeded from cultivated plants. It is grown from seed, and the root is harvested in autumn.

Female applications – Native Americans have long used Black Cohosh for female problems, for which it was also known as “squawroot.” It is used today for menstrual pain and problems where progesterone production is too high and for menopausal symptoms, especially hot flashes, debility, and depression.

Inflammation – Black Cohosh is useful for inflammatory arthritis, especially when it is associated with menopause, and it is also an effective remedy for rheumatic problems, including rheumatoid arthritis.

Sedative properties – the sedative action makes it valuable for treating a variety of conditions, including high blood pressure and tinnitus (ringing in the ears). It is also valuable for whooping cough and asthma. More and controlled studies are warranted on Black Cohosh. A health care practitioner should be consulted prior to administering any herbal products.

About the Author

John Russell of IH Distribution, LLC brings you health, anti-aging and skin care products from around the world. Find fabulous skin care tips and great articles on a wide range of topics for women at our blog and Subscribe to our newsletter – filled with information and exclusive offers you won’t find anywhere else.

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Abdominal Pain Hot Flashes

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, diarrhea, constipation, diet and traditional Chinese medicine

The following is an excerpt from Hot and Cold Health by R. G. Heft (Acupuncture Physician FL 1992- 2002) based on traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines and the questioning and counseling of 10,000+ Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is based on the theory, observation that everything is an ongoing balance of opposites, many of which we control through diet, exercise, sex, thought, etc.


Know the whole before attempting to diagnose and or treat the part, as you cannot cure the part ithout curing the whole. The whole is equal to and greater than the sum of its parts.  If you cannot afford or do not want to risk your money ($20 or less), then I will send, email you the E Book (Adobe file, 1,005 KB) for free.  Your health is  more important than my bank account. Email me ( your request or questions.  Peace.


Diarrhea is frequent and or loose stools. It has many causes: poor diet, indigestion, contaminated water, bacterial infection, drugs, spoiled foods, caffeine, magnesium supplements, laxatives, antibiotics, excessive alcohol, etc. Diarrhea can also be a symptom of inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, IBS, Crohn’s Disease, etc. depending on additional symptoms. Diarrhea, loose stools is generally treated with diet, herbs and or drugs, depending on the severity.


The body digests, transforms food, nutrients into blood, into structure into function. Whatever food, nutrients, non-nutrients not digested, absorbed becomes waste that is sent down to the large intestine for temporary storage and eventual elimination. The stools are made from food, nutrients and non-nutrients (includes fiber). There are only two kinds of nutrients: building and cleansing. Building nutrients (protein and fat) build, thicken, fuel, heat, etc. Cleansing nutrients (water, sugar, minerals, etc.) reduce, cleanse, cool and moisten.     


Protein and fat are thick, sticky nutrients. They hold together the stools, giving them form. Water, sugar, minerals, fruit, vegetables and grains (bread, pasta, cookies, pretzels, etc.) contain water, sugar, minerals, etc. that dilute and loosen the stools. They also contain fiber that naturally absorbs, swells with water, fluids giving the stools bulk.


The correct combination of building and cleansing foods, drinks produces the correct amount, quantity and quality of stool. Normal, healthy stools are banana shaped, firm, buoyant and relatively odorless. Unhealthy stools are loose, dry, frequent, infrequent, constipated and or stinky.      


Too many cleansing foods, cold drinks, fluids (water, fruit, vegetables, juices, milk, ice cream, etc) dilute and weaken digestion, acid and enzymes, which in turn, dilutes, weakens and loosens the stools, causing diarrhea and or constipation in addition bloating, gas, burping, etc. Raw, uncooked foods (salads, fruits, juices, etc.) tend to loosen the stools more so than cooked foods.


The middle diet, daily meal plan, adjusted accordingly is recommended. Spices (cardamom, coriander, cumin, cayenne, ginger, fennel, turmeric, cinnamon, etc.) increase digestion, eliminate excess water: mucous, phlegm, diarrhea, etc. and counter; kill obnoxious bacteria, fungi, etc.


In Ayurvedic medicine, many spices, 7+ are used in cooking. Each spice has similar and different healing properties: turmeric (anti inflammatory, digestive aid); fennel (liver, digestion), cardamom (aids in digestion of dairy), cinnamon and ginger (prevention and treatment of common cold, earaches), etc. Spices are contraindicated when there is dryness. See Chapter 3, for more information.


Peppermint tea helps counter, dry diarrhea. The best advice, when suffering from diarrhea, is to eat light (vegetable broth, little spice) until it ends. If chronic, consult a doctor. Milk is difficult to digest, which is why it is often drunk alone. With other foods (cereal), it tends to cause indigestion, abdominal bloating, gas, loose stools, etc.

Constipation is infrequent and or dry stools that are difficult to pass. The stools are made from food and bacteria. Food contains nutrients and non-nutrients (includes fiber). There are only two kinds of nutrients: building (protein and fat) and cleansing (water, minerals, sugar, etc.)  Protein and fat build thicken and dry. Water, minerals, etc. moisten and loosen. The correct combination produces the correct elimination, stools. The incorrect produces constipation, loose stools, diarrhea, etc.


Too much protein and fat (includes cholesterol) and or too little carbohydrates (grains, vegetables and fruits) tend to dry, thin and harden the stools. Too many carbohydrates (fruits, vegetables) tend to loosen the stools. Too little fiber tends to loosen the stools. Too many spices in addition to smoking, coffee and alcohol, in the extreme, also tend to dry the stools. 


The frequency and movement of stools are controlled largely by digestion and respiration Digestion transforms (reduces the size of food into its smallest component parts: nutrients and non-nutrients) and transports, moves food down via peristaltic wave-like contractions of muscles located the small intestine. The diaphragm is muscular partition that divides the chest from the abdomen. It moves up and down as the lungs expand and contract, massaging the intestines, increasing peristaltic action, movement of food from the small intestine to the large intestine. Exercise and deep breathing increase peristalsis.   


Protein and fat build and fuel all function. Long-term low protein and low fat diets, in the extreme, tend to weaken all function, including digestion and elimination. Weak digestion increases waste product as all foods, nutrients not digested, absorbed become waste (sent to the large intestine). It also tends to loosen the stools, as there is less protein and fat to harden, form.


Water, sugar, minerals, fruits, vegetables, and grains reduce cleanse, cool and moisten. In excess, especially when eaten at the beginning of the meal, tend to dilute, weaken and slow digestion, elimination making the stools loose, watery and or infrequent, dry, constipated, painful. Diverticulitis (pockets) may also occur.


The middle diet, meal plan (Hot and Cold Health, Chapter 2), adjusted accordingly is recommended.  Always eat from hot (building) to cold (cleansing), with a little fruit at the end of the meal. Try black or white fungus, and or mushrooms, which are moistening, mucilaginous, slide easily through the body. Use oil, 1 TB of olive or sesame oil in cooking. Snack on fruit: apples, pineapple, etc. especially at night (as long as the stools are not loose, watery).  Eat a light, early dinner. A heavy dinner or late night eating tends to cause constipation. Reduce pasta, bread, cookies, doughnuts, pretzels, coffee, alcohol and smoking which are all drying, constipating. Check with your doctor first before making any changes.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) (also known as intestinal neurosis, mucous colitis and or spastic colitis) is a common digestive disorder with the following symptoms: abdominal bloating, pain, gas, nausea, mucous in the stools, constipation, diarrhea, colitis (inflammation) and or anorexia. It tends to attack women, twice as much as men and is. It is generally cause by poor diet.


Many women tend to eat low protein, low fat and high carbohydrate diets. Protein and fat build and fuel. Long-term low protein and low fat, in the extreme, tend to weaken all structure and function, including digestion and elimination. Less food, nutrients is absorbed, transformed into blood, more becomes waste, as all food, nutrients not digested, absorbed, becomes waste sent to the large intestine for temporary storage and eventual elimination from the body.  


Too many carbohydrates (salads, tropical fruits, juices, smoothies, shakes, etc.), especially at the beginning of the meal, tend to dilute and weaken digestion, acid and enzymes, slowing the movement of food producing abdominal bloating, gas; while increasing watery waste, loose stools, diarrhea. Constipation may also occur. Weak digestion weakens, slows elimination.



The middle diet, meal plan adjusted accordingly is recommended. Cooked foods, spices and eating more during the day increase digestion and elimination. Eating big dinners, and or eating late weaken digestion and elimination. 

Case history: One of my customers (health food store) was suffering from IBS. Her daily, weekly symptoms were abdominal bloating, gas, loose stools, constipation, headaches and swelling (her arms and legs were swollen twice their size). I diagnosed her condition as a cold and damp spleen. She was eating low protein, low fat and high carbohydrate (salads and juices) diet. Her spleen, digestion became producing the aforementioned symptoms. I recommended the middle diet, meal plan, especially spices in addition to a reduction in cold foods, drinks. Week by week her condition got better, hotter, stronger. Nine months later, most of her symptoms had disappeared, including the swelling in her arms and legs. She was very happy. A year later, her symptoms came back. She was still worried about her health and had gone to see a nutritionist who had recommended golden seal, nine capsules a day. Golden seal is a cold, bitter herb. I had originally diagnosed coldness (includes deficiency) as the cause of her condition, which she re-aggravated once she started taking more, concentrated cold in the form of golden seal. I refused to sell her the golden seal, she had ordered. I gave up a hefty profit



Hot and Cold Health



Chapter 1 The Way of Thinking Chapter 2 The Way of Food Chapter 3 Digestion, Spices and Chinese Herbs Chapter 4 Cooking Class


Chapter 5 Three Treasures Chapter 6 Blood and Body Fluids Chapter 7 Spleen Chapter 8 Stomach Small Intestine Chapter 9 Large Intestine and Urinary Bladder Chapter 10 Heart Chapter 11 Liver & Gall Bladder Chapter 12 Lungs Chapter 13 Kidneys Chapter 14 Disease and Diagnosis


Chap 15 A Diseases AIDS 141 Alzheimer s 143 Anal fissure 143 Anemia 144 Anger 145 Aging 146 Anxiety 147 Arthritis 148 Asthma 152 ADD 154 Auto-immune 154 Chap 16 B Diseases Blood 157 Blood Pressure 158 Body Odor 159 Bones 161 Breast lumps 162 Bronchitis 164 Chap 17  C Diseases Candidiasis 167 Canker Sores 169 Cellulite 171 Cholesterol 173 Chronic Fatigue 175 Circulation 176 Cirrhosis 178 Cold hands, feet 178 Cold (lungs) Constipation 180 Coughing 182 Crohn s 182 Chap 18 D Diseases Depression 185 Detoxification 188 Diabetes 191 Diarrhea 193 Diuretics 195 Dizziness 195 Dysmenorrhea 196 Chap 19 E-F Diseases Ear Infections 197 Eczema 197 Edema 200 Endometriosis 202 Eyes 202 Fear 204 Fever 204 Fibrocystic Breasts 204 Fibroids 205 Fibromyalgia 205 Forgetfulness 207 Frigidity 208 Chap 20 G-H Diseases Gall Stones 209 GERD, GIRD 210 Gout 212 Hair Loss 213 Hearing Loss 215 Hepatitis 218 Herpes 220 Hot Flashes 220 Hysteria 221 Chap 21 I-J Diseases Infertility 223 Inflammation 223 Insomnia 224 Irritable Bowel 226 Itching 227 Jaundice 227 Chap 22 K-O Diseases Kidney Stones 229 Miscarriage 230 Mucous 231 M. Sclerosis 231 Nails 233 Nausea 235 Numbness 236 Obesity 237 Osteoporosis 238 Chap 23 P-R Diseases Pediatric 241 Perspiration 244 Plantar F. 244 Pregnancy 248 PMS 250 Prostate 251 Psoriasis 252 Rashes 252 Restless Leg 252 Chap 24 S-Z Diseases Sex 255 Shaking, tremors 257 Sinusitis 258 Skin Diseases 259 Sleep Apnea 261 Snoring 262 Sweaty hands 263 Teeth 264 Tumors 266 Urinary T. I. 267 Varicose Veins 269 Weight loss 270 Yeast infection 274 Chap 25 Case Histories 275


 Chapter 26 The Way of Breathing, Chap 27 Exercise, Chap 28 Meditation 303, Chap 29 Spiritual Practices (belief in God)  307 Appendix 313 Bibliography 315 About the Author 317

About the Author

Author: Hot and Cold Health; Acupuncture Physician (FL 1992-2002; owner, operator Food and Thought, health food store, Hollywood, FL (1984-2001); questioned and counseled 30,000+; There is no disease that I cannot figure out, cause, effect and cure, treatment.” Email me.

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