- For centuries, it has been common knowledge that Asians have one of the longest life expectancies in the world, and for decades, researchers have been searching for the reasons behind that phenomenon.
Many believe the secret lies in their diet, which consists largely of fish, poultry and the vegetables grown in the region, but Dr. Nathalie Valkov
- an expert in Oriental medicine and author of the book "Cordyceps: Treating Diabetes, Cancer and Other Illnesses from Createspace" - believes the secret lies in an Asian herb that is just now getting noticed by Western medicine.
"While it is commonly acknowledged that some of the best medical care in the world can be found in the United States, we have to remember that our medical culture is barely a couple of centuries old," Valkov said. "Asian medicine has been around for thousands of years, and since people from the Far East tend to live much longer than we do in the West, it's not a stretch to say that there may be some ancient secrets hidden in their diet and medicines that may help us unlock the keys to longevity and good health."
According to Valkov, Cordyceps - a type of Chinese mushroom - has been used in Eastern medicine for centuries to aid in the treatment of various autoimmune, pulmonary, cardiovascular and other illnesses.
"Recent clinical studies performed in China are now confirming the benefits of Cordyceps, providing the clinical proof to practitioners of Western medicine that the herb has some unique medicinal properties," she said. "Herbal medicine is also a part of oriental medicine and has also been practiced for thousands of years. Today, prescriptions are based on ancient formulas that have been time tested and that are known to have helped millions of people. The Chinese pharmacopoeia is comprised of hundreds of herbs, minerals and animal products that are combined to suit the constitution, the imbalance and the immediate relief of symptoms of the individual being treated."
While Western medicine has regarded some of these remedies as quackery, Valkov cautioned not to dismiss Cordyceps and effectiveness of Oriental herbs so rashly
"Acupuncture, which is now a common therapy used in the U.S., came from Asian healers who have been using it for centuries, so it's logical that there may be some other practices from which we can all benefit," she added.
Some research has been published in which Cordyceps has been used to protect the bone marrow and digestive systems of mice from whole body irradiation. In addition, one experiment indicated that Cordyceps may protect the liver from damage. Another experiment with mice revealed the mushroom may have an anti-depressant effect. Other researchers believe that it has a hypoglycemic effect and may help diabetics who suffer from insulin resistance.
"Other research from the region points in the direction of Cordyceps potentially thwarting certain cancers," Valkov added. "I believe that we need to embrace these new findings, coupled with the anecdotal evidence of millions of Asians who seem to live longer and healthier lives than we do in the West, and combine the methods of the two regions to create better medicine for everyone."
About Nathalie Valkov
Nathalie Valkov holds a PhD in Oriental Medicine and was trained at Emperor's College of Traditional Oriental Medicine. Since 1999, she has had the opportunity to practice such healing methods as acupuncture, electro-stim acupuncture, acupressure, tui na, cupping, moxibustion, and herbal therapy. She interned both in an Oriental environment at Emperor's College clinic and in a Western environment at the Los Angeles Free Clinic. She has successfully treated ailments such as diabetes, arthritis, Raynaud's syndrome, asthma, colds, flu, heart problems, various types of pain, diabetes, stress, insomnia, tonsillitis, fibromyalgia, and gynecological dysfunctions.
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