Nutritional Therapy for Hepatitis C: Victims of tainted blood can restore health

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Nutritional Therapy for Hepatitis C: Victims of tainted blood can restore health

Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver usually caused by a viral infection. The liver becomes tender and enlarged and is unable to function normally. As a result, toxins that would normally be filtered out by the liver build up in the body and certain nutrients are not processed and stored as they should be.

The symptoms of hepatitis include fever, weakness, nausea, vomiting, headache, appetite loss, muscle aches, joint pains, drowsiness, dark urine, light-colored stools, abdominal discomfort, jaundice (yellowing of the skin) and elevated liver enzymes in the blood. Flu-like symptoms may be mild or severe.

There are different types of hepatitis, classified according to the virus that causes the condition. In the last 15 years, scientists have identified the viruses responsible for three leading types of the disease, namely hepatitis A, B and C.

Hepatitis C accounts for 20 to 40 per,-cent of all hepatitis and 90 to 95 per cent of hepatitis contracted through blood transfusions. Tests can now detect antibodies against hepatitis C in donated blood, a major advance in ensuring a safe blood supply, but an infected individual may take up to six months to develop the antibodies, so it is still impossible to identify all infected blood. Hepatitis C can also be contracted through intravenous drug use, sexual contact and broken skin or mucous membranes.

Recommendations:

- Eat a raw vegetable and fruit diet for two to four weeks. Start this diet with a cleansing fast.

- Include artichokes in the diet. Artichokes protect the liver. Artichoke extract and plant juices are available at your health food store.

- Drink "green drinks," carrot juice and beet juice.

- Drink only steam-distilled water.

- Consume no alcohol.

- Avoid all fats, sugar and highly processed foods.

- Avoid all raw fish, shellfish and eat no animal protein. Also avoid chemicals and food additives.

- Get plenty of bed rest.

- Use a chlorophyll enema three times a week. Use one pint and retain it for 15 minutes.

- Apply warm castor oil packs over the liver area. Place castor oil in a pan and heat, but do not boil it. Dip a piece of cheesecloth or other white cotton material in the oil until the cloth is saturated. Apply the cloth to the upper right abdomen and cover it with a piece of plastic and use it to keep the pack warm. Keep the pack in place for one-half to two hours, as needed.

Herbs

- Burdock and dandelion are important in cleansing the liver and the bloodstream.

- Studies have shown licorice to be effective in treating viral hepatitis, particularly chronic active hepatitis, due to its well-documented antiviral activity.

Caution: Do not use this herb on a daily basis for more than seven days in a row. Avoid if you have high blood pressure.

- Milk thistle extract contains silymarin, a flavonoid that has been shown to aid in healing and rebuilding the liver (see International Health News, page 18). It can be taken in capsule or alcohol-free extract form. Take 200 to 400 milligrams three times daily.

- Other herbs beneficial for hepatitis include black radish, goldenseal, green tea, red clover and yellow dock. (Do not take goldenseal internally on a daily basis for more than one week at a time, do not use it during pregnancy and use with caution if you are allergic to ragweed. Goldenseal is an excellent herb for both liver restoration and gall bladder function.)

Essential Nutrients

Free-form amino acid complex

Glutathione plus L-cysteine and L-methioine

Milk thistle

Raw liver extract or desiccated liver

Coenzyme Q10

Dimethylglycine (DMG)

Lecithin granules

Superoxide dismutase (SOD)

multivitamin complex with B-complex

extra B12

choline

inositol

vitamin C with bioflavonoids

vitamin E

calcium and magnesium

essential fatty acids (primrose and salmon oil)

shark liver oil

multienzyme complex with betaine hydrochloride

raw pancreas glandular

vitamin A

maitake, shiitake or reishi mushrooms

Recommended Reading:

Prescription for Nutritional Healing

J and P Balch 600 pp (sc) $26.95

Canadian Health Reform Products Ltd.

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By James Balch

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