Stop Playing Whack-a-Mole With Your Health!

whack-a-mole_smallMany of you know that diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol and high blood pressure are chronic conditions that often occur together. In fact, the Center for Disease Control reports that 62% of American baby boomers have 2 or more of these chronic health problems.

 

There is strong interdependence between these diseases. A typical scenario might be; my high cholesterol raises my blood pressure, because of my high blood pressure, I exercise less, because I’m not getting as much exercise my weight balloons, gaining weight triggers diabetes, higher cholesterol and high blood pressure and the whole unhealthy cycle begins again at a higher level.

 

It’s a tough cycle to break once you get in it. It reminds me of the children’s game, Whack-a-mole. Just when you start to get a handle on one of the conditions, the other one spikes, aggravates the one you’ve been working on and you’re back to square one.

 

One of the reasons that white mulberry is one of my favorite tonic herbs for modern lifestyles is that according to traditional Chinese medicine, it helps with all four of these chronic conditions, high blood sugar, obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

 

Most of you have already heard about the research indicating that white mulberry tea is beneficial for people suffering from diabetes and obesity. Dr. Oz generated a lot of positive press late last year by featuring our white mulberry tea on his show and he described in detail the benefits for weight loss and helping manage blood sugar.

 

This week I ran onto a new study in the International Journal of Pharmacology on the effect of white mulberry on high blood pressure. Here’s the link to the research for those of you who are scientifically inclined,

 

http://scialert.net/qredirect.php?doi=ijp.0000.64565.64565&linkid=pdf

 

I’ll summarize briefly. White mulberry has been used in traditional medicine around the world to treat high blood pressure but there has been almost no scientific research to explore if this makes sense from a pharmacological perspective. This new study examines specifically the effect of white mulberry extract on high blood pressure.

 

The researchers used the same methodology used to test high blood pressure medications. First they tested the effects of various doses of white mulberry on live animals and then they took tissue samples of blood vessels and heart muscles and studied the effects of white mulberry specifically on the tissue samples.

 

They found, as predicted by traditional medicine, that white mulberry does indeed lower blood pressure and that the effect is dose dependent, that is, the more you take, the lower your blood pressure goes.

 

In the tissue studies they tried to determine what physiological mechanism causing the reduced blood pressure. It’s a bit complex for a summary, but they found that white mulberry blocks some of the electrical signals causing contractions of heart tissues and blood vessels thus reducing blood pressure.

 

They compared the results to the drug verapamil because the mechanism seems to be similar to the mechanism used by verapamil and, in fact, they found white mulberry extract to be equally effective. That’s big news because verapamil is so effective it’s on the World Health Organizations list of the most important medications. Now, if I could just get them to add white mulberry to the list!

 

There have been no adverse symptoms reported to white mulberry tea. But, since the active mechanism seems to be similar to that of verpamil, I think the same cautions applied to verapamil make sense with white mulberry until further research is available. So, be careful consuming white mulberry if you have heart arrhythmia or angina.

 

Now, my usual disclaimers, I’m not a doctor and I sell white mulberry tea for a living. So do not take any of this as medical advice. You should always consult your physician before beginning taking any herbal supplement and before discontinuing any doctor prescribed medications. Be sure to research any possible interactions with other herbs or medicines you may be taking. This was an animal study not a human trial and certainly more research is needed, but the results are encouraging and seem to back up the traditional medicine.

 

So, another good reason to make white mulberry tea your mealtime drink of choice. Here’s the link to buy white mulberry tea direct from our website, http://www.immortalitea.com/pure-white-mulberry-leaf-c-67.html (but check out the postscript below first!)

 

Have a great day!

 

PS – I’m still trying to boost my rankings on Amazon. So, I’m giving you all an exclusive 30% off our 100 gram size of white mulberry tea on Amazon. Just click on this link;

http://www.amazon.com/White-Mulberry-Tea-Caffeine-Free-Immortalitea/dp/B002U49JXI/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1404394084&sr=8-5&keywords=mulberry+tea

and “Add to Cart.” Enter coupon code; JAISUBKW when you are checking out. This coupon code is valid starting at 9:00 am (PDT) today and is good through Monday (midnight, July 7) or until we run out.

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Is Jiaogulan the Long-Awaited Natural Way to Lose Weight?

Natural_weight_lossOver the years I’ve reported on a number of animal studies that strongly suggested that Jiaouglan (aka Gynostemma) may help with weight loss. But, as far as I’m aware, there had been no controlled human studies to test this tantalizing theory. That’s why I was excited to hear late last year that researchers from the Functional Foods Center at Chonbuk National University in Korea had decided to conduct a controlled human study. The results are in and they look promising.

The results of the study were reported in Obesity Journal’s January 14 publication under the title “AntiObesity Effect of Gynostemma pentaphyllum Extract. (Actiponin)” Actiponin is a trade name for Gynostemma extract derived by a specific method. For those of you with a bit of science background, it makes an interesting read, you can see the full source here; http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/oby.20539/full

Here’s the punch line quoting directly from the article, “Conclusion: Our study revealed that actiponin is a potent antiobesity reagent that does not produce any significant adverse effects. These results suggest that actiponin supplementation may be effective for treating obese individuals.” For normally conservative scientist types, that’s a pretty strong endorsement.

The researchers theorize that saponins in jiaogulan stimulate the body to increase production of an enzyme called AMPK. AMPK is one of the enzymes that help your body maintain an energy balance between the food you take in and your metabolism.

The design of the study was pretty simple. They split a test group of 80 obese people into two groups. One group received 2 tablets of Jiagoulan extract daily and the other group took two placebos pills twice a day. They tracked both groups for 12 weeks and monitored their food intake, weight, abdominal fat distribution, BMI and took blood samples every 3 weeks.

After 12 weeks, as expected, there was no statistical change in the placebo group. However, the group taking jiaouglan lost an average of 2.97 lbs. They also improved their BMI, reduced their % of body fat and had smaller waists and hip circumferences. They also experienced reduced cholesterol and triglycerides. There were no adverse side effects reported by either group.

It’s important to note that this study was on a particular type of Gynostemma extract. We don’t know for sure if the results would have been similar taking pure jiaogulan or drinking jiaogulan tea. But I find it interesting that the researchers calculated the dosage of their extract in order to deliver the same amount of saponins as would be received if you followed the advice of “folk medicine” and consumed 5-9 grams of dry whole jiaogulan every day.

This is just one study. I’m hopeful that it will stimulate more jiaogulan research. If other studies confirm these results you may see jiaogulan become the next weight loss phenomenon as happened recently with Garcinia cambogia. But, if your like me, you won’t wait for everyone else to discover what you already know, Jiaogulan is good stuff. Here’s the link if you want to grab some today. http://www.immortalitea.com/jiaogulan-gynostemma-c-69.html

 

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Help us get back on top – and save a bundle in the process!

amazon_screen_shotSome of you may not know that in addition to our own website we also sell our teas on Amazon. I’m working on a complete redesign of my own website and haven’t been paying as much attention as I should to our Amazon listing.

 

This week I realized that since the Dr. Oz show about white mulberry tea aired a bunch of new competition has showed up on Amazon and, because I wasn’t paying enough attention, they knocked us several positions down from the top spot.

 

Since we’re the company that has been promoting white mulberry tea for over ten years now, I refuse to let these Johnny-come-lately sellers steal our thunder.I’m even prepared to lose money in the short term to get back that top spot. It’s a matter of both pride and economics to me, that top spot on Amazon makes a big difference.

 

I have a plan, but I need your help. Amazon ranking depends on three things (as far as we know,) units sold, number and average stars of reviews and feedback (the info you send Amazon when they email you for your opinion about us as a seller.)

 

I’ve slashed the price of the 100 gram size of our white mulberry tea on Amazon to just $19.95. Just so you know, that’s the lowest price weve offered in the full ten years we’ve been in the business.I can only afford to keep it at the price for a week.Here’s the link; http://www.amazon.com/White-Mulberry-Grams-The-Actual/dp/B002U49JXI/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1396603079&sr=8-6&keywords=white+mulberry+tea

 

I’m asking you to take advantage of this super low price by buying from Amazon and in return for the great deal to please write a review and send Amazon your feedback when they ask for it. To be clear, I’m not trying to influence your review. I want your honest opinion.But, given all the good things people have been emailing about their experience with white mulberry tea, I am pretty confident most of the reviews will be good.

 

Hopefully, I’ve created a win-win. You save 40% on white mulberry tea. With your help, we get a bunch of sales this week on Amazon , good reviews and feedback, and take back the top spot.

 

Here’s the link again, http://www.amazon.com/White-Mulberry-Grams-The-Actual/dp/B002U49JXI/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1396603079&sr=8-6&keywords=white+mulberry+tea  Please don’t forget to write a review. I know it’s a little extra work but it will help a lot.

All the best,

Ralph

 

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Introducing the T-Sac

t-sac_smallOne of my blog posts that stimulated a lot of email was one I posted not long ago about why we don’t sell teabags. The post is here, http://www.immortalitea.com/blog/?p=475 if you missed it and want to read the whole thing. The short of it is that, while I understand the convenience of teabags, most tea in teabags is poor quality and preparing good quality tea to fit in a traditional teabag hurts the taste and reduces the shelf life.

That lead to a bunch of emails that said something like, ‘OK, but what do you recommend we do at work or when traveling if toting a long our favorite tea brewer is not an option?’

My recommendation for people in this situation is something called the T-Sac. The T-Sac is a fill-it-yourself teabag made in Germany according to tough EU food guidelines. It is made from all natural chlorine-free hemp and is fully compostable. I find I prefer the larger #2 size bags because this gives loose leaf teas more room to expand.

So, after giving that recommendation a couple of dozen times I decided I should probably just sell them on my site. Duh!

Here’s that link if you want to check them out. www.immortalitea.com/tsacs-disposable-filter-tea-bags-size-2-large-100-count-p-301.html

 

 

PS – These retail for $7.00 a box on Amazon, but I’ve got them on sale at an introductory price of just $5.95. I, obviously can’t keep the price at that level, so grab them while you can. Here’s the link again, www.immortalitea.com/tsacs-disposable-filter-tea-bags-size-2-large-100-count-p-301.html

 

 

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Is my Jiaogulan “really” that good?…………Yes!

drinking_jiaogulanEarlier this month I received an email from a long time customer. His email said more or less the following, “I love your jiaogulan but I recently found jiaogulan on another website for less. Is your product really worth the price difference?” I get this kind of question once in a while and it’s a subject I feel pretty passionate about so I decided to post my response in full.

“Thanks for your email. I truly appreciate your past business and the directness of your email. I will answer you directly as well.

The quality and price of Jiaogulan is all over the map. I have seen retail Jiaogulan at 1/10th of my price and 2X mine. I frequently sample jiaogulan from different sources. I am very confident that I have the best Jiaogulan currently in the market with one exception which unfortunately would have to retail around $200/Kg.

I cannot say if the difference in quality between ours and some other company’s is worth the price difference to you. That is of course a personal decision. I suggest you actually order the tea from the other company and do the side by side comparison.

Here are the things that make the difference in quality of jiaogulan. You can look for these when you do your comparison.

The cultivar of plant used. Jiaogulan comes in two broad categories, sweet and bitter. The bitter variety is much more common and quite difficult to drink as a tea. The sweet varieties also vary a lot in taste and consistency based on the seed stock used. Finally, the variety used makes a difference in terms of potency. We recently received test result from a study at the University of Maryland comparing different commercially available vendors of Jiaogulan in the USA. We ranked among the highest in potency and were the only vendor tested without the compounds that make a bitter taste.

How the plants are grown. All organic is not the same (and a lot of it, especially from China, not organic at all, even if they say they are.) Make sure you are buying from a company you trust. My business partner is an American living in Thailand full time. We work directly with small farmers to make sure they grow according to our specifications. This is of course more expensive but I believe it’s worth it to make sure the tea my customers drink for their health is not introducing other toxins at the same time.

How the Jiaogulan processed. Most Jiaogulan is harvested by machine and processed in big industrial dryers. We pick our Jiaogulan by hand. The first drying is also by hand on site to prevent oxidation and ensure freshness. We then dry twice more in small batches using forced air. We take great care to remove stems as much as possible (which is difficult given how small Jiaogulan vines are)and to dry the leaves with five leaf clusters intact. This care in processing improves shelf life, preserves purity and improves the tasting and drinking experience.

Freshness.Both the taste and efficacy is affected by time. We harvest monthly and ship to the USA almost every month. I say “almost” because frankly sometimes I mess up the orders and order too much. But it has been years since we went more than 2 months without a fresh batch. Most vendors order large batches once a year and store it in a warehouse someplace. This saves money on transportation and probably allows them to negotiate a better price, but it also means the tea is deteriorating in a warehouse (sometimes for years) waiting for orders to come in.

Sorry, for the long response. I guess you can see I’m passionate on this subject. Hopefully this is helpful. Again, I encourage you to make the comparison for yourself. I’m confident we will come out on top in quality. You will decide for yourself if the quality difference is worth the price difference for you. Whatever you decide, I’m truly grateful to have you as a customer.”

2 responses to Is my Jiaogulan “really” that good?…………Yes!

  1. hermes says:

    Hello from northern Vietnam. I usually drink jiaogulan jnfusion that I purchase at a supermarket in Bangkok. It is a little bitter (not much), comes in a green colour plastic packet and I believe (but have not verified) that it is from the Royal project in Chiang Mai. Even royal project (organic only) honey sells in 7-11s here cheap. Anyway, my question is why would anyone farm a healthy herb non- organically? Secondly, what is the reason you do not include the vine? Here the herb ladies sell Giao Co Lam (local name) in bags that are 50% vine – i.e. a lot of ‘lumber’ I presumed it was a cost factor but I have also read that the beneficial plant chemicals are spread throughout. Perhaps taste is a factor? I actually *like* bitter taste. It reminds me I am taking medicine.

  2. Ralph Kenney says:

    Thanks for your comments and your questions. It’s unfortunate that some people do use non-organic methods of cultivation even for herbs for health. There are various reasons but in the end they come down to profit motive. Plants fertilized artificially grow faster and produce more and plants treated with chemical pesticides may better withstand attacks by insects and various fungi. Fortunately, more and more consumers are aware that consuming non-organic herbs for health are like taking one step forward and two steps back.

    We work hard to minimize the stems in our jiaouglan. It is a very small vine and doesn’t lend itself to the usually tea picking methods so it’s hard to avoid the stem. That said, there’s nothing wrong with stems in jiaogulan and because they are soft stems they brew up just as well as the leaves and have a slightly higher concentration of saponins. We take them out because, as you mentioned, they do make the tea more bitter tasting and because many consumers just don’t like to see stems in their tea and perceive it to be lower quality. But if you are buying jiaogulan and your local market from someone you trust and you see stems in it I wouldn’t worry about it at all. The stems are just fine.

    Cheers.

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Not My Bag

shutterstock_161345036

Why I don’t sell my teas in tea bags (yet).

One of my most frequently asked questions is, “Why don’t you sell your teas in tea bags?” I understand the appeal of teabags. It’s one thing to enjoy the process of brewing the perfect cup of tea when you are at home in your own kitchen with your own teapot etc. It’s quite another when you are at the office or on the road somewhere and you just want a quick cup of tea.

Despite the obvious convenience I’ve so far resisted tea bags. Here are the reasons.

Shelf-life: In order to put tea in standard tea bags the tea needs to be milled. The industry buzz-word is “tea bag cut.” This is basically just chopping the tea leaves into tiny bits so they fit easily into the bags using automated tea bag filling equipment. Once the tea leaves are cut into tiny bits, the surface area exposed to air, and thus to the process of oxidation, increases several fold. This, in turn, greatly reduces the shelf life of the tea. A good quality loose leaf tea will maintain its freshness for at least 6 months and often much longer. Once tea leaves are milled and put in tea bags (even if the tea bags are kept in a sealed container) the reasonable shelf life is about 3 months.

Taste: Keeping in mind the above comment on shelf life, old tea is bad tea (with the exception of some puerh teas, which are meant to be aged). But beyond just the premature aging of the tea that comes through accelerated oxidation, even fresh tea served in tea bags can be problematic for taste. This is again due to the surface area problem. This greater surface area not only accelerates aging but also accelerates brewing because greater surface area is also now exposed to the hot water when you brew. One might be tempted to think faster brewing is a good thing. But, in fact it is not. The faster brewing process changes the flavor profile, usually leading to bitterness. Furthermore, in many cases the actual material of the tea bag can be tasted in the brewed tea.

Quality: Tea bags are great example of a good idea gone bad. They were originally an accidental invention. In the early 1900′s in the USA, teas were still considered a gourmet product. When fresh shipments of high quality tea arrived, tea merchants would rush samples of the new teas to their best clients, usually in small tins. In 1903 a tea merchant named Thomas Sullivan began sending his tea samples in small hand sewn silk bags. Bear in mind that these were not filled with milled teas but instead high quality whole leaf teas. Some customers just assumed the idea was to drop the whole bag into a cup of hot water and brew right in the bag. It turned out that this did indeed brew a great cup of tea. Customers started asking for their tea to be delivered in the little sample bags.

Mr. Sullivan quickly realized he was on to a good thing. But the silk bags were a bit expensive and the weave a bit too fine for brewing tea. He reportedly experimented with a few options and finally settled on muslin tea bags. Unfortunately, Mr. Sullivan failed to patent his idea (although others did) and soon tea in tea bags was available throughout the USA. So far so good.

Then, some big tea producers realized two things, 1) once the tea is in the tea bag the consumer can’t see the leaves and thus has no visual sense of the tea’s quality or the quantity of tea in the bag and 2) if the tea was milled or crushed you could use a lot less tea for the same strength brew and thus save a lot of money. One side effect of preparing loose leaf teas is something called “fannings.” Fannings are little scraps of tea that break off during various stages of processing the tea. In the old days these fannings were either discarded, or more frequently, swept up and sold as low quality tea to the lowest end of the tea market. Unscrupulous, tea merchants soon realized that what was once a throw away could be packaged in tea bags and sold at a tidy profit and thus began the downward spiral leading to the current deplorable standard for most tea bag teas world-wide.

Cost: We grow sustainably and organically on small farms. We pick much of our tea by hand and much of the processing is done by hand as well. We ship to the USA every month freshly harvested teas whenever growing seasons permit. All of this adds up to a higher quality but unfortunately higher cost tea.

Now imagine if we put this high quality tea in tea bags. Because the tea is not milled, we cannot use automated tea bag fillers, so yet another by hand process. The tea bags would have to be larger in order to accommodate brewing of loose leaves. We grow our teas chemical-free so we need to source all natural and chemically-free tea bags. All of this would add up to a pretty expensive tea on a per cup basis.

But, I haven’t given up:I said earlier that tea bags are a good idea gone bad. The fundamental premise if a good one. Fortunately, I’m not the only person thinking about this and a lot of good ideas have come out in recent years including biodegradable bags made from all organic material and new shapes for tea bags that accommodate larger leaf cuts. I’m convinced that soon I will find a solution that works for us.

Here’s my wish list, all organic bio-degradable bags, bags that are big enough to accommodate expansion of whole loose leaf teas, a tea bag material that is tasteless, a tea bag filling machine that does not destroy the whole leaf teas and all at a price that adds just pennies per cup to the cost.

For you tea bag fans out there, please don’t think I’m not listening. I hear you. I’ll keep working on it and I will be sure to post here when I find the solution.

One response to Not My Bag

  1. Kimberly says:

    I have found that tea bags made of organic cotton work nicely. I purchased xl-sized ones for good prices on e-bay. I tried the metal strainers and I feel that they leave a taste. I have heard that hemp ones are nice, planning to try those next!

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It’s been a crazy week!

Screen shot from the Dr. Oz show showing our White Mulberry Leaf Tea.As I most of you know, on Monday of last week our White Mulberry Leaf Tea was shown on the Dr. Oz show. Because they do not endorse any specific company, they covered up our label but hopefully my subscribers all recognize the packaging. Here’s a link to the show’s website where you can watch the specific segment that featured our tea, http://www.doctoroz.com/episode/newest-health-food-sensation-revealed

I knew we were going to be on the show because the staff from the show placed an order for tea and then emailed me to rush the order because they expected to be filming soon. But, I was lead to believe that there would be weeks, maybe months, before the show aired. So, I thought I had plenty of time to prepare.

How did I find out the show was airing sooner than I thought? Well, as it turns out I just celebrated my 50th birthday. My best friend and I planned a week of hiking in the mountains to celebrate. But the weather turned on us so we bought some deep-discount last minute tickets to the beach.

When you own your own business you get used to checking in on things, even when you are supposed to be on vacation. So last Saturday I logged in from my hotel room and saw a spike in Mulberry leaf tea orders. I immediately googled white mulberry leaf tea (ain’t it great that “google” is a verb?). I found out that Dr. Oz had appeared on a radio talk show in New York. On the show he mentioned White Mulberry Leaf tea and said he’s going to be talking about it on his show that coming Monday! Guess, how I spent my beach vacation? Yep, working!

I’m in no way complaining. It has been great for my business and I’m thrilled that more people are hearing about White Mulberry Tea and its benefits. You can read more about the benefits on my website, http://www.immortalitea.com/pure-white-mulberry-tea.html. But I did almost immediately run out of stock. I gave all of my subscribers a heads up this was coming but I know a lot of you did not have a chance to place your order before I ran out and of lot of you who did place orders are still waiting to receive it. I apologize for that and I’m working hard to catch up.

It is harvest season for white mulberry tea in Thailand and I have a shipment of freshly picked and prepared White Mulberry Tea shipping by air today. I hope to be able to ship to customers starting early next week. I appreciate your patience.

In the meantime, I want to let you in on a secret. OK, it’s not really a secret, because it’s on my website. Let’s call it, “as yet undiscovered information.” I also sell a mixed leaf tea blend I created myself called Integra Tea. Integra Tea contains not only White Mulberry Leaf but also one of Dr. Oz’s other favorites, Oolong tea, and two other powerhouse adaptogens, Gynostemma and Tulsi Leaf. You can read about Integra Tea here, http://www.immortalitea.com/integra-tea.html You’ll get all the benefits of drinking white mulberry leaf by drinking Integra Tea and more.

Until I have white Mulberry Tea back in stock, I’ve temporarily added a 150 gram bonus size of Integra Tea for the same price as our usual 100 gram package. As of this writing I have plenty in stock but I suggest not waiting too-too long to place your order. I thought I had plenty of White Mulberry Tea in stock until a few days ago. Here’s the link one last time, http://www.immortalitea.com/integra-tea.html

2 responses to It’s been a crazy week!

  1. Irene says:

    Hello,

    Why do some feel a blend of teas that include white mulberry works better than mulberry alone?

    Thank you.

  2. Ralph Kenney says:

    Hi Irene, Great question. It depends, of course, on the blend and the objective. White mulberry leaf tea is usually used for managing blood sugar, and if that’s the sole objective then I think straight white mulberry is a great way to go. However, diabetes is so often accompanied by a host of other chronic illnesses, including obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. In that case it may be that a blend is better for addressing the combination of concerns.

    For example, we sell blend called Integra Tea. Integra has white mulberry for the blood sugar but also contains, jiaogulan for high blood pressure and cholesterol and oolong to help with weight loss.

    I hope that helps.

    Ralph

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My phone call from Dr. Oz

pure_white_mulberryAs one of my blog subscribers you already know that for over 10 years I’ve been promoting the benefits of white mulberry tea for managing blood sugar, weight loss, cholesterol, and host of other benefits.

 

And, while Dr. Oz has probably never heard of me, I did get a phone call from his show recently. It seems Dr. Oz has discovered the many health benefits of white mulberries and white mulberry tea. They needed samples of white mulberry tea for their show and…….you guessed it, they bought them from The Immortalitea Company.

 

I realize not everybody is a Dr. Oz fan. I myself do not always agree with all of his recommendations. But I am grateful that someone with his visibility and reputation is helping get the word out about the benefits of white mulberry tea.

 

As of this writing, the show has not aired yet. But here are some of the things he’s already posted on his website,

 

-The white mulberry leaves have scientists especially excited, since they may help prevent diabetes.

- A compound called 1-deoxynojirimycin (DNJ) found in mulberry leaves is thought to inhibit sugar digestion so that most sugar is not absorbed into the bloodstream and is instead excreted.

-Studies suggest DNJ helps prevent spikes in blood sugar. You can drink mulberry leaf tea with your meals to help control blood sugar and possibly prevent diabetes.

The program airs today (Monday Sept 30) at 4:00 for most people in the USA (be sure to check your local listings). Tune in if you have time to hear what he has to say. And if you get distracted because you hear some crazy guy shouting…..that’s me yelling, “That’s my tea! See that green stuff? That’s my tea!”

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The new Superfood: mulberry tea lowers blood sugar

Guest Post by nutritionist and freelance writer Lisa Peters

Diabetes WarningNearly 30 million people have diabetes in the US, and the rest of the world is catching up with this shocking statistic. As we continue to snack on sugary sweets and deep fried everythings – our bodies are asking for trouble. It is essential to be aware of what we put into our bodies and maintain a reasonable and responsible diet. Stop the fizzy soda and start drinking a pure and beneficial drink; mulberry leaf tea can help prevent and aid your body from developing serious health problems such as diabetes.

Why choose Mulberry?

Mulberry leafs have many health benefits including compounds which lower blood sugar levels. They have been commonly used in many Chinese medicines for just this reason.

The all-time favorite nursery rhyme, Here We Go Round The Mulberry Bush may have been onto something. Mulberries are already used a lot in other cultures, including Indian food, as they are high in protein and inexpensive. Western diets are sometimes carbohydrate driven – we love out chips, fries and all things potato based. But this can present real problems for our bodies. Most of us may feel that we are getting all the core nutrients and food groups into our system, but the reality is that more and more people are developing health problems. From heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol, the list is never-ending.

How does it prevent Diabetes?

Compounds found in mulberry leaves contain hyperglycemia, which help lower our blood sugar levels, also known as glucose. These levels need to be monitored closely for any diabetic. When they rise, which is often after eating foods with a high gylcemic index, (potato, sweets, and all those lovely foods we enjoy to much) the body produces insulin to help digest these foods. Simply put, if we eat too many sugary things too often our body cannot cope with the overload and our pancreas is affected. Our body finds it harder and harder to produce insulin and we develop a very dangerous condition called Insulin Resistance. This will most likely lead to type two diabetes.

But, enough with all the technical talk. We want to know how drinking tea can help prevent all this. It isn’t as simple as a cup a day will make the diabetes away. But, what is found in mulberry tea can really help control these levels that can lead to getting diabetes in the first place.

Are you addicted to food?

We are all addicted to something. Whether it’s your morning espresso, cigarettes, bottle of cold beer in the evening or your favourite bar of candy. We love our food, that’s face it. But if you simply cannot put down fatty foods, and think it may be an addiction, then it is time to get help. Going to recovery centres in relaxing locations such as South Carolina near the Savanna River, can be a really good idea to help get you back on the right track. More and more people are struggling with their food addictions. Obesity is prevalent in the US and all over the world, and as we know, this is the number one cause of type two diabetes. The shocking reality is that 1 in 400 people under 20 years old have the disease. Diet, Insulin and other medication are the primary treatments for diabetes. Type two diabetes, the most common type, can be controlled by maintaining a healthy diet. Certainly, going jogging a few times a week, becoming more active and eating less junk food will be a good start. Incorporating some mulberry tea into your morning and evening routine can also help too.

Research studies

A research group in Japan conducted various experiments of the mulberry leaf to see what exactly they contained and how they could help stabilize blood sugar levels in humans. By feeding rats with Mulberry extract before giving them carbohydrates, the tests showed their blood glucose levels were significantly lower than before. They concluded that mulberry extract, found in mulberry leaves, may actually help diseases such as diabetes.

But rats are rats, and humans are humans, how can they really be sure it would work the same way? Indian researchers also did studies but this time on 24 men aged 40 to 60 years old. The research study lasted four weeks and showed the men’s blood sugar levels also drop after ingesting mulberry extract. It also proved that that the ingredient significantly reduced the men’s cholesterol.

Other health benefits

Mulberry tea can have other health benefits which include various vitamins and minerals that are essential for a healthy body. These include amino acids, carotenoids, chlorophyll, vitamin C, B1, B2, B6, A and flavonoids. Yes, it all sounds a little alien to a non-professional but it is true. Mulberry also contains a high amount of fiber. Research has even shown that mulberry leaves contain six times more calcium than green tea and 25 times more than milk. It also contains Iron, 10 times more than spinach.

So, there you have it. Mulberry tea contains so many good nutrients, minerals and compounds which can actually reduce the risk of diabetes and help other health problems too. It may sound so simple and you may not buy it – but at least give it a try and don’t end up being just another statistic.

One response to The new Superfood: mulberry tea lowers blood sugar

  1. Debra says:

    Thank you! I have to say I have seen a big improvement in my blood sugar levels since using your Mulberry Tea – I’m hoping the capsules work just as well so I can use them while at work (I can’t make tea Thanks again and have a health, happy New Year!

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Running at Optimum – Jiaogulan for Athletes

Guest Post by nutritionist and freelance writer Lisa Peters

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Over the past 20-30 years, the herbal pharmacy of Chinese medicine and wellbeing has gained much wider recognition and acceptance in the Occident. Ginseng has taken its place at the forefront of this change in public perception and now Jiaogulan is set to join it as a firm favorite for its health giving properties. Jiaogulan tea is made from the wild herbaceous vine, Gynostemma pentaphyllum. Used in China for many generations to increase longevity, boost energy levels and stave off illness; jiaogulan functions both as an antioxidant and an adaptogen.

Research and Medical Opinion

Research conducted during the last forty years has revealed a host of health-supporting properties to Jiaogulan and has led to a revolution in its use. Tea prepared from the herb contains trace minerals, vitamins, amino acids and proteins which the body needs for good health. Also containing saponins; these compounds have a significant effect on body function, helping to regulate many of our body systems: blood; digestive; and mental function.

Athletes today come under ever increasing pressure to perform at peak fitness without resorting to the growing number of banned substances which in former times have aided muscle growth, lung and heart function, stamina and blood circulation to name but a few. Many are finding that the herbal pharmacopeia of Chinese tradition is helping them to achieve their goals. Research conducted at Guiyang Medical College demonstrated that jiaogulan increases both strength and endurance. This study, conducted on 1,310 healthy participants, half of them 50+ years old, showed that regular use of jiaogulan over the period of one month increased the body’s production of Superoxide Dismutase (SOD), while reducing Malondialdehyde (MDA). SOD is a powerful antioxidant, possibly the most important one in the body as it is responsible for neutralizing the highly reactive superoxide radicals; these are the most damaging of the radicals to human health. Regular stimulation of the production of SOD helps to prevent cell and tissue damage and to lower cholesterol. In addition, SOD has been shown to improve heart function and stroke volume without increasing blood pressure or heart rate. MDA on the other hand is thought to be a biomarker for oxidative stress. The broad range of disorders and diseases which are able to be triggered by oxidative stress is quite startling. With the elevated levels of oxidative stress experienced by athletes, finding solutions to the damage caused by free radicals is critical. The heart for instance can be affected by: arrhythmia; angina; cardiovascular disease; congestive heart failure; and coronary obstructive pulmonary disease. These are just a few of the reasons why any athlete has to work really hard to keep their body in top condition for competition.

How to Take Jiaogulan

Jiaogulan tea making is very much a matter of personal preference, like any tea. Some people prefer to barely taste the tea, while others prefer to leave the leaves to infuse for much longer, producing a stronger flavored brew. There is some thought that jiaogulan tea should be treated in the same way you would treat green tea: using water that has not quite got to boiling point (140-160 degrees) and leaving it to infuse for around two minutes for optimum effect and flavor. Clearly, the longer brewing means the most efficient extraction of the elements which you are drinking the tea to obtain. Some people think that one cup a day is just the right amount to drink, while others will be quite decided in their views that you can’t get too much and may drink 3-5 cups or more each day. Needless to say, just as how you make the tea is a matter of personal taste, so is the amount you drink.

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Although you won’t feel the beneficial effects of jiaogulan tea from the very first cup, it won’t take that long, using it regularly, to start noticing the difference. One of the main changes you should notice is an increase in your energy levels; you will be far less likely to catch colds or suffer nasal irritation with conditions like sinusitis. As a relaxant, jiaogulan also assists in stress relief and sleep; and it helps to promote lean muscle and reduce fat, so making you fitter and feeling healthier and slimmer.

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