Buckthorn bark is peeled off plants and dried for 1-2 years before being used as a mild (but highly effective) laxative. The longer the bark is dried, the milder its actions. Buckthorn Bark was listed in both the United States Pharmacopoeia & British Pharmacopoeia. Some great components in Buckthorn Bark include
crystalline glucoside (frangulin),
anthraquinones like: emodin, Aloe-emodin, rhamnicoside, frangula-emodin, alaterin, chrysophanol, & rein
Buckthorn Bark contains rhamnus frangula which increases the colon’s ability to spontaneously contract to push the fecal matter through your colon instead of remaining stationary and becoming impacted. As your colon contracts more regularly, more frequent movements are produced. 3
Buckthorn Bark makes stools softer and gives them more volume to pass easily. 5
Buckthorn Bark affects the intestinal nerves to relieve constipation and ease evacuation of the bowels. It helps to relieve pain and pressure, especially for people who have hemorrhoids, anal fissures or have had rectal-anal surgery. 2
The tannins in Buckthorn Bark allows hemorrhoids and anal fissures to heal more quickly because the softer stools pass more easily, without irritation.
Buckthorn bark is used to cleanse the colon in prep for gastrointestinal procedures. 3
Buckthorn Bark is effective in cases of chronic constipation and atonic constipation, which is caused by inadequate intake of fluids, poor diet or overuse of purgatives that result in loss of natural reflexes. 4
Buckthorn Bark is also used to ease abdominal bloating.
2) blood purification
Buckthorn Bark has been used as a ‘blood purifier’ and diuretic.
3) liver | gallstones
Buckthorn Bark stimulates the production of bile secretions, which promote healthy gallbladder and liver functions, helping with problems like cirrhosis, jaundice, hepatitis and gallstones.
Things that Make a Difference in How Well Rhubarb Root Works…
Rhubarb’s name is from the Greek verb, ‘to flow’.
Europeans have used Rhubarb Root medicinally since the 1200s.
By the end of the 1800s, it was clear that the medicinal characteristics of rhubarb are affected by the soil composition and climate, so it’s really important to purchase Rhubarb Root from a company which ensures proper soil composition & climate.
When constipated, the colon is not spontaneously contracting, therefore fecal matter sits and builds in the colon causing the constipation. It’s the purgative actions of Rhubarb Root that will not only move the fecal matter but will also tone the colon so it contracts on its own more regularly.
The colon does not become dependent on the Rhubarb Root to contract, so once cleansed, constipation should not return.
It’s difficult for the contractions to completely clean the long and winding colon, therefore pockets of debris might be left behind. This is when the astringent, tannin acid, comes after the purgative action and does a thorough wash of the colon. It removes any left over pockets of fecal matter or infectious bacteria.
It gives us smoother bowel movements! The A-factors (or anthraquinones) in Rhubarb Root act as a time released healthy laxative which is smoother than other laxatives.
Emodin (found in Rhubarb Root) is metabolized by the large intestine’s gut flora to help absorption, secretion, motility & peristalsis without affecting the stomach or duodenum. 1
It’s helped GI bleeds by eliminating blood, bacteria and toxins. 2 , 6, 7
2) Rhubarb Root aids in weight loss!
It aids weight loss by dramatically increasing the rate the human burns fat
It optimizes metabolism by improving circulation. The copper and iron in rhubarb stimulate the production of new red blood cells, which boosts metabolism.
3) Rhubarb Root is Antimicrobial!
Rhubarb’s anthraquinone has been used as antifungal 16 , 17 and molluscicidal 18 agents.
Rhein, from anthraquinone, has in vitro antimicrobial activity against a wide variety of gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria. 3, 17, 19
Rheum emodi extract was found to inhibit ‘in vivio’ all strains of Heliocobacter pylori (both sensitive and resistant) at a concentration of 10 mg/mL. The H-Pylori didn’t develop any resistance to the Rhubarb Root after 10 times even though they usually acquire resistance to Amoxicillin and Clarithromycin after 10 passages. (25)
5) Rhubarb Root Helps the Kidneys!
Clinical studies have evaluated rhubarb extracts in patients with CRF and report reduced uremic symptoms and reduced blood urea nitrogen. 13 , 14
A number of animal studies have observed the effects of rhubarb in rats with Chronic Renal Failure. Rhubarb Root tannins produced an increase in glomerular filtration rate, decreased levels of uremic toxins, and increased blood flow to the kidneys. 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12
6) Rhubarb Root Helps us Avoid Alzheimer’s!
Traditional Chinese medicine suggests rhubarb improves the memory in senile patients. 15 This is because it has vitamin K which plays a significant role in brain and neuronal health. It can prevent the oxidation of brain cells & stimulate cognitive activity to help delay or prevent the onset of this disease.
In in vitro experiments, rhapontigenin exerted a dose-dependent protective effect on mitochondrial functioning against amyloid beta (1-42) neurotoxicity. 1
7) Rhubarb Root Helps Menopause!
Rhubarb Root’s lindleyin significantly reduced the frequency and severity of hot flashes in perimenopausal women. (25, reference 76)
Lindleyin has potential beneficial applications as selective ER modulators ‘in vitro’ (25, reference 77)
8) Rhubarb Root Helps Cancer Patients!
Apoptosis, as well as anti tumor action, has been demonstrated, and rhubarb extract has been suggested as an adjunct to chemotherapy. 2 , 3 , 4
Rhubarb is anti inflammatory. Rhubarb extract 20 mg/kg daily administered for 6 weeks to patients undergoing radiation therapy for cancer resulted in a reduction in radiation-induced lung toxicity in a randomized clinical trial. Evaluation of anti-inflammatory markers suggests that an anti-inflammatory action of rhubarb is responsible. 5
9) Rhubarb Root helps Bones!
The vitamin K in Rhubarb Root stimulates bone growth & repair.
10) Rhubarb Root helps the Heart!
It protects against cardiovascular conditions due to the high antioxidant content.
11) Rhubarb Root Helps the Liver!
In rats with induced cholestatic hepatitis, emodin caused a decrease in total bilirubin, improvement in the liver enzyme profile & liver regeneration. 20
2Other great things rhubarb does include anti platelet properties, 21 anti hypertensive effects, 22 anti inflammatory action, 23 and glucose homeostasis. 24
Misiti F, Sampaolese B, Mezzogori D, et al. Protective effect of rhubarb derivatives on amyloid beta (1-42) peptide-induced apoptosis in IMR-32 cells: a case of nutrigenomic. Brain Res Bull . 2006;71(1-3):29-36.
Srinivas G, Babykutty S, Sathiadevan PP, Srinivas P. Molecular mechanism of emodin action: transition from laxative ingredient to an antitumor agent. Med Res Rev . 2007;27(5):591-608.
Huang Q, Lu G, Shen HM, Chung MC, Ong CN. Anti-cancer properties of anthraquinones from rhubarb. Med Res Rev . 2007;27(5):609-630.
Lin S, Fujii M, Hou DX. Rhein induces apoptosis in HL-60 cells via reactive oxygen species-independent mitochondrial death pathway. Arch Biochem Biophys . 2003;418(2):99-107.
Yu HM, Liu YF, Cheng YF, Hu LK, Hou M. Effects of rhubarb extract on radiation induced lung toxicity via decreasing transforming growth factor-beta-1 and interleukin-6 in lung cancer patients treated with radiotherapy. Lung Cancer . 2008;59(2):219-226.
Jiao DH, Ma YH, Chen SJ, Liu CT, Shu HN, Chu CM. Résumé of 400 cases of acute upper digestive tract bleeding treated by rhubarb alone. Pharmacology . 1980;20(suppl 1):128-130.
Fang XL, Fang Q, Luo JJ, Zheng X. Effects of crude rhubarb on intestinal permeability in septic patients. Am J Chin Med . 2007;35(6):929-936.
Yarnell E. Botanical medicines for the urinary tract. World J Urol . 2002;20(5):285-293.
Zhang G, el Nahas AM. The effect of rhubarb extract on experimental renal fibrosis. Nephrol Dial Transplant . 1996;11(1):186-190. Erratum in: Nephrol Dial Transplant 1996;11(4):753.
Yokozawa T, Suzuki N, Okuda I, Oura H, Nishioka I. Changes in the urinary constituents in rats with chronic renal failure during oral administration of rhubarb extract. Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo) . 1985;33(10):4508-4514.
Yokozawa T, Fujioka K, Oura H, Nonaka G, Nishioka I. Effects of rhubarb tannins on renal function in rats with renal failure. Nippon Jinzo Gakkai Shi . 1993;35(1):13-18.
Peng A, Gu Y, Lin SY. Herbal treatment for renal diseases. Ann Acad Med Singapore . 2005;34(1):44-51.
Kang Z, Bi Z, Ji W, Zhao C, Xie Y. Observation of therapeutic effect in 50 cases of chronic renal failure treated with rhubarb and adjuvant drugs. J Tradit Chin Med . 1993;13(4):249-252.
Bi ZQ, Zheng FL, Kang ZQ. Treatment of chronic renal failure by retention-enema with rhizoma rhei compound decoction. J Tradit Chin Med . 1982;2(3):211-214.
Tian J, Du H, Yang H, Liu X, Li Z. A clinical study on compound da huang (radix et Rhizoma rhei) preparations for improvement of senile persons’ memory ability. J Tradit Chin Med . 1997;17(3):168-173.
Agarwal SK, Singh SS, Verma S, Kumar S. Antifungal activity of anthraquinone derivatives from Rheum emodi . J Ethnopharmacol . 2000;72(1-2):43-46.
Tegos G, Stermitz FR, Lomovskaya O, Lewis K. Multidrug pump inhibitors uncover remarkable activity of plant antimicrobials. Antimicrob Agents Chemother . 2002;46(10):3133-3141.
Liu SY, Sporer F, Wink M, et al. Anthraquinones in Rheum palmatum and Rumex dentatus ( Polygonaceae ), and phorbol esters in Jatropha curcas ( Euphorbiaceae ) with molluscicidal activity against the schistosome vector snails Oncomelania, Biomphalaria and Bulinus. Trop Med Int Health . 1997;2(2):179-188.
It takes 20 minutes to feel full. The hormone called ghrelin turns on your “I’m hungry” switch. As you eat, your ghrelin hormone drops. It takes about 20 minutes for your food to travel from your stomach to your colon. Here’s where the “I’m full!” switch gets turned on by the hormone peptide yy. Patiently give your body enough time for it to work! Find ways to stretch out your eating time so you get only one serving size in the 20 minutes. Otherwise, you’ll fall into the trap of eating a serving size in the first 5-10 minutes, still feel hungry and eat some more. The last 10 minutes of intake is overeating because you won’t feel full till the full 20 minutes is up.
You can slow down your eating to give your body time to turn on your “I’m full” switch. Here are a few ways to slow down:
Drink 1/4 serving of blood sugar balancing protein during meal prep. It’ll start satiating you in 5 minutes! By the time you sit down to eat, you’ll only need 5 or 10 minutes & your hunger hormone switch turns off!
Sit down to eat.
Cut up your food into small pieces.
Chew each bite 25 times or more.
Notice the taste of each bite of food. Savor it.
Set your fork down between bites.
Talk to others while your mouth is empty.
Listen to others while engaging in eye contact. Eye contact produces happy hormones which allow you to slow down and savor!
2) Eat when your body is hungry.
Know your signals for hunger, emotions & activities.
Activity Signals are: vacations, holidays, birthdays, events, good news, bad news
3) Eat communally at purposeful times & places.
You’re the ‘king of your castle’! You get to create your healthy eating environments. Avoid eating straight from the food container & use smaller plates & bowls. Fill your plate and put away leftovers before you eat. Keep healthy high protein & fiber, low carb snacks available all the time. Set up your ‘Salad Bar in the Fridge‘. Cook your ‘Freezer Fiesta~ a month of meals in a day to save 19 hrs a month!‘ When we eat alone, randomly or sporadically, we sabotage ourselves.
4) Eat nutritionally dense foods that nourish you.
Some foods help you and others are emotionally manipulative. Fried, sugary, salty and low protein foods rob us from feeling great & manipulate us into eating them by promising lots of pleasure. Unfortunately, the ‘pleasure’ they provide is so short lived and the ‘pain’ they cause lasts for hours. Eating them is like putting glue in your fuel tank. We can tell ourselves stories about how certain health foods don’t taste good. Yet, when we slow down to appreciate them, our stories can prove to be false. Take the ‘savor my raison’ activity. You look at the raison and probably think it won’t be that satisfying. But, when you suck it, savor it, and see how long you can enjoy it in your mouth, you notice the sweet flavor. It gets better the longer it’s in your mouth. Give it some time to satisfy you.
5) Eat on purpose, with intention.
When we multi-task, we diminish our ability to pay attention to whether we’re nourishing ourselves or just shoveling it in. Our bodies work so hard all day long. Why do we spend longer making our bodies look good (hairstyle, makeup, outfits) than we spend to make sure we actually feel good? Have you noticed that well nourished people naturally look better too? And, they get to feel better the whole day long! Choose to do this for yourself. No one else can make this choice for you.
6) Eat gratefully, trusting your needs will be met without waste.
When we’re grateful, we stop grasping for more. This is true with our eating habits as well as all other areas of life. Many of us have developed a fear-based coping mechanism regarding food. Some of us were punished as we grew up by being denied meals or being forced to eat foods we didn’t like. Some were given unhealthy foods as ‘bribes’ for good behavior. Others were forced to eat all the food on our plates even when we weren’t hungry instead of just saving the food for our next snack. These actions can cause us to distrust that our real needs will be met regarding our food. We’re afraid we won’t get nourished! When we purposefully stop these behaviors, we’ll begin to trust that our needs will be met with our food. We won’t waste food anymore by overeating and we’ll feel more satisfied. The more we make a decision to nourish your bodies, the more we’ll trust our bodies to tell us what they need. Believe me.
Truly, we don’t have to ‘diet’ to have a healthy weight. When we refocus our attention on the right things, our bodies will respond. Trust me.
I’m like a woven basket with holes in it. By the time I got married, my basket was pretty crooked, in need of repair. I felt like the Lord kept pouring His love into me and it just drained out the bottom. I was exhausted, trying to love others out of ‘be nice adrenaline’ instead of ‘genuine overflow-love’. The Lord showed me He wanted to heal my holes and make me ‘holy whole’. My husband’s endurance and love has been the ‘stopgap’ during this process. His virtue supports my good repair. This is one of the benefits of a Catholic marriage. Spouses really can be the tools the Lord uses to heal us. Lovers love better when they’re full of love.
Imagine two individuals each holding their own identity symbolized by a piece of rope held on each end by both hands. Now, imagine these two find each other and decide to let go of part of themselves to hold hands with each other. This is really beautiful, but as soon as someone starts pulling on them, they can easily come ‘undone’. When my husband and I decided to let go of our old self identities and give them to the Lord to hold, He was able to take those loose ends and tie them together into a knot. As the each rope rubs against the other, some of the external fibers (outer borders) are removed. It’s like sand paper. This rubbing allows our inner selves to touch, mingle and become one. The Lord can pour His love into each of our ‘ropes’ and that love flows into each of us and into each other. We end up with MORE love than we started. The two loves from God become one. This love can flow through us & energize us. The more we’re connected to God’s love, the more love can actually flow out the other ends of our ropes. This is the love we can use to love the world with.
I really believe that Pope St John Paul 2nd is so right in this quote. When we let the Father’s love flow (and keep asking Him for more and more of it every time we’re angry, hurt, disappointed or taken advantage of), we really start to think and act like Him. Our real capacity to reflect His love starts to be actualized!
What if every action we did for our household was done out of love? What If we really did wash the laundry and clean the toilet because we love the person who will use it next? What if we spent our resources wisely (our energy, time and money) because we loved the ones we share those resources with? Would respect grow in our families?
Catholics believe that marriage is a sacrament with a mission! Yes! How do you know what your family mission is? One way we’re figuring this out is to be honest about what gifts the Lord has given us. We know that all gifts are meant for us individually and for the good of the whole Church and the whole world. So, what are your gifts? (see pic above for ideas). What are your spouse’s gifts? What happens when they’re used together, synergistically? The two gifts become one and the sum total is greater than the individual parts. This is so exciting! What do we do with these gifts? Well, there are so many spiritual and corporal ways we can spend our time using them! Examine the merciful acts above. Which ones resinate with you? Which ones could really be done using the gifts the Lord’s given you? Marriage gives us so many opportunities to practice ALL of them! It’s a perfect setting to practice works that are merciful! And, when we spend time doing merciful works, we develop attitudes of blessing. (The Church calls these the Beatitudes.) Our mind actually begins to recognize blessings in so many situations. The veil of ‘unknowing’ gets lifted. This purposeful thought pattern and purposeful decision making leads to us bearing good fruit. Others get to benefit from these fruits as we bring them into every situation we’re in. They’re a part of us. And these fruits forge eternal virtues in us. We actually become people of virtue, with virtue. We begin to reflect God in ways we only dreamed of. We begin to bring light and hope to the world! And, we get to experience them ourselves first.
Did you know that sleeping just 5.7 hours a night for one week changed the expression of 711 genes! (Many of these cause obesity, heart disease & dementia.) [see gene study] Just one night of severe insomnia can cause the same injury to the brain as a concussion. It’s alarming to know that occasionally taking a sleeping pill (like Benadryl or antihistamine) raises the risk of premature death by 300%! Insomniacs are 55% more likely to die from heart disease! [see insomniac study]
Three Ways Insomnia Hurts our Hormones
It Bombards us with Stress Cortisol & Adrenalin
Cortisol makes us gain weight. Did you know steroids like Prednisone are a form of cortisol? One of their common side effects is weight gain.
It Floods Us With the Raging Hunger Hormone Ghrelin
Ghrelin tells us we’re hungry… sooo, sooo hungry! Insomnia steals our Leptin hormone that tells us we’re full. Imbalance leads to sugar & fat cravings that are out of this world.
It Skyrockets Blood Sugar
Some reasons this happens is that the brain can’t use glucose efficiently when we become insulin resistant. So, our blood sugar raises. Then, we produce more insulin. Insulin stimulates hunger & we eat more than we need. This causes even higher blood sugar.
7 Ways to Stop Insomnia & Weight Gain
Stop Eating @ 7pm
Eat Tryptophan Seeds & Nuts
This amazing amino acid found in turkey, nuts & seeds, helps us produce sleep inducing melatonin. Nuts & Seeds help us stay full (with protein, fat & fiber).
Eat: walnuts, cashews & sesame seeds.
Eat Lots of Calcium & Magnesium
Calcium & Magnesium relax the nervous system & muscles & help us sleep. Calcium can help our brains make melatonin from tryptophan.
When we move, our muscles release hormones. The more fat we have, the more estrogen we store. This estrogen-dominant situation makes it really difficult to cut weight. Exercise lowers estrogen. It’s really helped me to wear a step tracker to make sure I’m getting 10,000 steps every day. To get the support to reach your great weight, request access to our private ‘Healthy Fit – Move It Challenge‘.
Eating too much or too little can lead to weight gain.
For every pound of overweight mass, the person ate 3500 too many calories. Or, he/she has a thyroid problem or they’re in ‘fasting mode’ because they didn’t eat enough.
If you’re eating too much, determine your basal metabolic rate (bmr). This number will tell you how much you’ve been eating to get to your current weight. Set your caloric goal to be less than your bmr. Women can go as low as 1200 calories a day, men as low as 1500. Breast feeding women 1800 a day. If you’re not eating enough, increase your caloric intake with healthy, nutrient dense foods.
When the bowels are covered with mucus, they can’t absorb nutrients very well. So, we overeat. Herbs and flora help keep the intestines clean! When the liver is sluggish, we feel sluggish and gain weight. The liver’s job is to remove toxins (chemicals, etc). Milk thistle, reishi mushroom, schizandra, dandelion, turmeric and artichoke all help the liver do its job. Here’s a great 7 day Healthy Cleanse I love! For more private support, request access to our ‘Detox This‘ group.
Here’s an inspiring video about how stress can actually be a signal for growth.
It’s really important to identify what’s stressing us out and solve the source of the problem.
If you want support in your journey, request access to our ‘Stress Relief | Brain Power‘ private Facebook group and let us know Deb Headworth sent you there.
High cortisol causes weight gain and inflammation. It can damage nearly every organ. 90% of all illnesses are stress related. We must find ways to remove this stress induced excess cortisol.
My 4 favorite ways to remove cortisol
Exercise till I’m dripping with sweat.
Contemplation / Meditation / Prayer till I feel peaceful love and slow breathing.
Ashwagandha, L-theanine, beta sitosterol & L-tyrosine all help remove excess cortisol and support a calm, relaxed state without drowsiness. It really helps to use these stress relieving herbs before bed.
Inflammation leads to pain which leads to excess weight.