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Filtering by Category: Clean Body

Safflower Oils... Wake up your body.

Sakra Natural Health

Photo taken by Erica Campbell, ND at Buffalo Woman Ranch in Dove Creek, CO.


Most of us are used to using organic virgin olive oil as our main oil booster, recently we have started to see the benefits of some other oils too.  Dr Oz recently had a lot of information on the wonderful benefits of this oil, and you can see his info here too. One of the best oils that the Green Team have seen, with the best benefits is safflower oil. Some of the health benefits of safflower oil include its ability to lower cholesterol levels, manage blood sugar, aid in weight loss, improve hair health, boost skin health, reduce the symptoms of PMS, control muscle contractions, and improve the immune system.

Safflower is an annual, thistle-like plant with many branches and little known use except for its oil, safflower oil. Fortunately, this oil is extremely valuable and is extracted from the seeds. In the past, safflower seeds were typically used for dyes, but they have had a range of uses over the last few thousand years. It has been an important plant for cultures dating back to the Greeks and the Egyptians.

There are approximately 60 countries around the world that cultivate this crop, but the overall yield is rather small, only about 600,000 tons per year around the world. In modern history, the vegetable oil that is extracted from the seeds is the most valuable element of the plant, and the majority of production is used for that purpose. The oil, however, is a good replacement for other, less healthy vegetable oils that are widely used, so the market continues to increase around the world. The health benefits of this oil, rather than more traditional vegetable oils, are significant and are outlined in more detail below.

So Many Health Benefits of Safflower Oil

Heart Health: Safflower oil has been shown to have a very high content of omega-6 fatty acids, which is a beneficial type of fatty acid that our body needs. It is otherwise known as linoleic acid. This acid can help the body to keep a healthy balance of cholesterol in the body, which decreases the chances of developing atherosclerosis, as well as the other health conditions, such as heart attacks and strokes, that are often the result of this condition.

Diabetes: The omega-6 fatty acid has also been shown to manage blood sugar levels, thereby helping those people who suffer from diabetes to keep their blood sugar even. This can also prevent people from developing diabetes.

Obesity: This has long been known as a good choice for those people who are trying their best to lose weight. Omega-6 fatty acids, of which safflower oil is rich, helps the body to burn fat, rather than store it. This makes safflower oil very valuable, since vegetable oil is used in so many cooking preparations, and it can be used by people to lose weight, if they find it difficult to make too many changes to their diet.

Hair Health: Safflower oil is also rich in oleic acid, which is very beneficial for beauty, hair strength, shine and vitality. This vitamin increases circulation on the scalp, stimulating hair growth and strength in the follicles. It can also help to keep your hair shiny and vibrant, so it is often used in cosmetic applications. However, it also does the same thing if consumed as food.

Skin: The high content of linoleic acid in safflower oil makes it ideal for boosting the quality and appearance of your skin. The linoleic acid can combine with sebum to unclog the pores and reduce blackheads, as well as acne, which is a result of sebum build-up under the skin. Furthermore, linoleic acid stimulates the regeneration of new skin cells, meaning that it helps to clear up scars and other blemishes from the surface of the skin, leaving you looking younger and more attractive!

PMS: For women going through menstruation, it can be a painful and uncomfortable time. Safflower oil’s linoleic acid regulates the prostaglandins in the body, which can cause such dramatic hormonal fluctuations and symptoms during menses. Therefore, safflower oil can decrease the severity of the PMS symptoms and can also regulate menstrual cycles, just like hormonal supplements, without the dangerous side effects.

Immune System Health: Although they regulate the function of prostaglandins, safflower oil also contributes the omega-6 fatty acids that create prostaglandins. These are hormone-like substances that help the body to function normally, including the processes of the immune system, therefore leaving our body more protected.

PLEASE do take note: If you have a problem with blood clotting, it is best not to use safflower oil, because it can dramatically slow down blood clotting, since it is a blood thinner. Also, if you have an allergy to ragweed or others in that similar family, avoid safflower oil, since it is that botanical family and it can cause allergic reactions of varying severity.

As always ...small changes, make huge effect… see where can you can insert safflower oil into your daily health and beauty routine… your body will thank you for it. The Green Team gives this wonderful oil and its benefits two thumbs UP!

One of our favorite products that has Safflower in it is: CLA 1000mg. To further learn the benefits of CLA you can read this guide.  

Total Body Burden

Sakra Natural Health

Total Body Burden

Ever wonder why you can’t loose weight? Or no matter how hard you try you just can’t seem to overcome an illness or get back on top of your game? You are likely Tox-sick.

Did you know, sadly enough, that there is not a single space left on the plant today that has not been contaminated with pollution? Toxins are in the air we breathe, the water we drink and bathe in, and the foods we eat. Over time these toxins bio-accumulate or build up in our tissues and cells, much faster than we can eliminate them. The accumulation of toxins in our tissues lead to nutrient deficiencies, weight gain, brain fog, hormone imbalance, allergies, ADD, chronic disease, auto-immunity, cancer, and the list goes one. Suzanne Somer’s new book, TOX-SICK, is a collaborative collection of interviews with physicians that are well-trained Environmental Medicine doctors, including my mentor, Walter Crinnion, ND. The book quotes, “We are sick as a result of being under the greatest environmental assault in the history of humanity and our bodies have reached their tipping point”.

Our body’s burden of toxins has exceeded capacity and the result is illness.  The good news is that with cleaner, greener, and more healthful living, we can detoxify and heal!

How did we get so toxic?
According to the Environmental Working Group, “We know that: U.S. chemical companies hold licenses to make 75,000 chemicals for commercial use. The federal government registers an average of 2,000 newly synthesized chemicals each year. The government has tallied 5,000 chemical ingredients in cosmetics; more than 3,200 chemicals added to food; 1,010 chemicals used in 11,700 consumer products; and 500 chemicals used as active ingredients in pesticides. In 2000 major U.S. industries reported dumping 7.1 billion pounds of 650 industrial chemicals into our air and water” and that is in a single year! The issue is two-fold, we have dumped far too many compounds in our environment and secondly that these compounds have a very long half-life, meaning that they do not breakdown easily. For example, DDT, a pesticide that was banned in the USA in 1972, was still found in American soil 15 years later. Other toxic compounds like lead or mercury have a half-life of 20 years or more.

Just how toxic are we?
Total body burden of the average individual has sky rocketed. The EWG (Environmental Working Group) found that newborns begin their lives with exposure to as many as 287 toxic chemicals!  This is because we pass on a percentage of our body burden to our babies, which may explain why many children have allergies, asthma, poor immunity, ADHD, and many other illnesses. Most adults that were tested by the EWG, showed to have 53 chemicals that have been linked to cancer, 63 compounds that are toxic to the central nervous system and the brain, 58 chemicals that cause hormone imbalances, and 55 chemicals that cause immune system dysfunction and lead to autoimmunity, or a weakened immune system.  According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), total body burden is the sum total of chemicals, toxic heavy metals, and other dangerous and poisonous substances that are stored within our tissues and cells in our body at any given time.

Our immune system and our liver and kidney’s normally work together to remove toxins from our body. However, once our body’s capacity to eliminate these toxins is exceeded, our body starts accumulating them instead. Think of a coffee cup and imagine continually adding coffee beans to it. Once the cup is full, the coffee beans have no where to go, so they continue to pile up until the cup starts overflowing and creates a mess around it. The same happens in our bodies. Once these toxins accumulate, they start overflowing and creating symptoms and issues that lead to illness and diseases.

The types of illness varies greatly depending on the type of exposures and our genetic susceptibility. According to Harvard School of Public Health, “Toxic chemicals may be triggering recent increases in neurodevelopmental disabilities among children, such as autism, attention deficit, and dyslexia”.  Fibromyalgia, auto-immunity, and infertility, has been linked to toxic exposures and it has also has been reported that 95% of cancer is caused by diet and environment!

Although the effects of the chemicals we use on a daily basis won’t cause harm right away, they build up in our system and can be dangerous to our overall health. Not only can this body burden be dangerous for us as individuals, but it can also impact our babies and children, and future generations.

What can we do to protect ourselves and heal?
We will be providing much more information on how to protect yourself from toxic exposure and how to detoxify your body, in future blog posts, so please look for that information in subsequent posts. For now, here are a few tips… The first step to reducing total body burden is to avoid future exposures. Every aspect of our daily lives can affect our total body burden, which is why it is so important that we focus on cleaner living. Focus on the basics, clean food, clean air, and clean water.

Stop consuming processed foods that are loaded with chemicals, pesticides, and preservatives. Use non-toxic personal care products. Create a clean home environment by eliminating pesticide use in the home, eliminate toxic cleaning products, avoid purchasing furniture that is made from pressed woods or toxic fabrics, purchase high-grade HVAC filters and home air purifiers or add plants that help to filter the air. Water filtration is also important in that our water source is also usually loaded with toxic chemicals.

The second step is that you start to replete the vitamins and nutrients that these toxic compounds strip from your body. This alone will help with liver function, kidney function and facilitate detoxification. Third step is to start a detox regime that includes gut, liver, and antioxidant support.

There is hope! With a little work, you can heal your body and you can continue to thrive, despite how toxic our world has become. Our bodies are quite resilient and they can repair and regenerate if we provide the right environment.



    • (EPA 1997c, EPA 2002b, EPA 2002c, FDA 2002a, FDA 2002b, FDA 2002c)

2.     8 Weeks to Women’s Wellness by Dr. Marianne Marchese

3.     Detoxify or Die by Sherry A Rogers, M.D.

4.     Tox-sick by Suzanne Somers

5.     Jason Allen, Melissa Montalto, Jennifer Lovejoy, and Wendy Weber. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. December 2011, 17(12): 1175-1180. doi:10.1089/acm.2010.0572

Ready for Some Allergy Relief?

Sakra Natural Health

Suffering from sneezing? Runny nose? Red, Itchy, and watery eyes? Are you tired of allergies and allergy symptoms? Are you ready to say farewell to allergies?

There are many of us that suffer from seasonal allergies. Some of us experience symptoms worse than others, but more than anything, allergy symptoms are just such an annoyance. Natural medicines and herbs are a great way to help relieve allergy symptoms. Ever heard of Urtica Dioica, also known as nettle or stinging nettle.

Stinging nettle is a herb that has been used for centuries to treat allergies and allergy symptoms, especially the most common symptom, Hay Fever. Nettles have biologically active compounds that have been studied and proven in reducing allergic and other inflammatory responses. This study, performed by Roschek B Jr., Fink RC, McMichael M, and Alberte RS, showed the positive affects nettle had on the key receptors and enzymes associated with allergic rhinitis (2009).

Nettles have several properties that have been used as an antihistamine and anti-inflammatory. This herb is a great treatment option for allergies and for reducing or eliminating your allergy symptoms. There are several naturopathic treatments that can also be beneficial in helping with allergy symptoms.

The most common test that we do is our food intolerance testing, which shows the foods our body has trouble digesting because of certain enzymes we are missing. Often times when eliminating these foods, allergy symptoms can be eliminated. However, if you have done this test, adjusted your diet accordingly, and are still experiencing those pesky allergy symptoms, there is another test that we would recommend.

The other test is an Immunoglobulin E (IgE) or immunoglobulin G (IgG) mediated test. This test identifies specific allergy triggers, which may be environmental or from foods. Determining these triggers will allow us to customize a natural and homeopathic treatment that will help in reducing or eliminating allergy symptoms.

Along with the stinging nettle, there are a few products that we would recommend in providing relief from these symptoms. The first is Elderberry Syrup by Wise Woman Herbals. Elderberry syrup stimulates immune system health and promotes strength and integrity of the vascular walls. The second product is Buffered C Powder by Thorne Research. Buffered C Powder alkalinizes the body and reduces inflammation. It also optimizes both immune function and antioxidant support.

There is no need to continue suffering with allergy symptoms. Natural treatments are used to improve and alleviate these symptoms.

1. Urtica Dioica (Stinging Nettles), Wise Woman Herbals
2. Elderberry Syrup, Wise Woman Herbals
3. Buffered C Powder, Thorne Research

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By Meena

FREQUENT UTI's or Chronic Urinary Issues?

Sakra Natural Health

Are you troubled with urinary track infections, frequent urination,  or chronic cystitis? The urinary track which includes the kidneys, the bladder, and the urethra, is very susceptible to inflammation. One of the primary sources of chronic inflammation in this organ system is FOOD!

The most common INFLAMMATORY foods are dairy, gluten, and sugar. Sugar suppresses our normal immune function which makes us more more susceptible to inflammation or infection. Eliminate these foods from your diet. Just a week, or two, is usually enough to calm the inflammatory load in your body which will allow for healing.

Proper hydration is also very important. When we are dehydrated we don't have enough fluids passing through our urinary track to keep things moving appropriately.  When fluids stagnate in the body, our bacteria become unbalanced which further feeds inflammation.

Proper bacterial balance in the urinary tract system is also critical for optimal health. Probiotics can be very beneficial to the urinary bladder and urinary tract system. Fermented foods like miso soup, Kombucha,  sauerkraut, or other fermented vegetables also help promote a healthy bacterial balance in the urinary track system.

If that is not enough support, I usually recommend cranberry concentrate with d-Mannose and several herbal remedies. The cranberry helps to acidify the urine while providing bacterial anti-adhesive properties, meaning the bacterial chains break apart which results in clearing of the infection. My two favorite herbals for urinary tract health are UVA URSI and GOLDENSEALUva ursi is widely used in Europe as a treatment for UTI's and this herb is approved in Germany for treatment of bladder infections! Goldenseal is a root that helps to treat many types of infections.. 

Hope you find this helpful. If you need further support, please let us know.

Erica Campbell, ND @ Sakura Natural Health.






Identifying Purpose: What is driving you?

Sakra Natural Health

When clients come to see me, I am grateful that they have decided to engage in a journey of more healthful living. I am excited to help guide them but in order to do so, I must know WHY they have decided to embark on this path of healing. This is one of the single most important questions I can ask.  If there is no understanding of WHY they are on this journey there is no motivation for them to embrace the changes and make them happen. Once we know our motivation, we can harness the energy it provides. This energy becomes our DRIVE...the power to make it all happen. 

If you are tired of being in pain, if you want to look and feel GREAT again, if you have cancer, if you are too tired to play with your children, or if you are emotionally stuck, or struggling with an addiction, or if you just want to live a long and healthful life, then there is no time like the present!  Change is not easy but if you create a PLAN then it will be much easier. If you are ready to take back your life, then follow these 3 easy steps and set yourself up for success.  

WHAT DO YOU WANT? You can CHANGE the direction you are living and choose another PATH but how can you do this if you don't know what you want. When is the last time you even took the time to STOP and think about what you want? ...and why do you want it? Identify the WHAT and WHY and be very clear about setting your intention for healing.  In vision what you want as if it is already happening. Make notes and post them around the house so that you can REMIND yourself what it is that you want, why you want it, and this will help keep you on course. Image what it will feel like to accomplish your health goals! 

WHAT STEPS ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE? Are you going to start eating healthy or begin a new workout routine? You may need help with this one. If you have tried these tactics before without success, it many be time to Find someone to help you and to give you guidance. Find a Naturopathic Doctor, or a trainer, or a nutritionist, or a life coach. This person can help guide you so that the new path becomes much easier. They can hold us accountable, and give us new ideas and inspiration. Find something that will EASILY work for you...for your budget, your schedule, and something that you will find interesting and exciting. This will help keep you on track and engaged. 

EVEN if it is really tough...JUST DO IT! TAKE ONE STEP AT A TIME. Make that phone call, sign up for that class or make an appointment.  Usually the first step is the hardest, so encourage yourself. Don't put off for tomorrow, what you can do today. TODAY is the first day of the rest of your life, so make it count.