Ben Fuchs

Ben Fuchs is a nutritional pharmacist from Colorado. He specializes in using nutritional supplements when other healthcare practitioners use toxic pharmaceutical drugs. He is the founder and formulator of Truth Treatment Systems for skin care, host of The Bright Side syndicated radio show, a member of Youngevity's Scientific Advisory Board, health expert and frequent guest on Coast to Coast am with George Noory. "The human body is a healing and regenerating system, designed divinely to heal & renew itself on a moment to moment basis." "Take charge of your biochemistry through foods and supplements, rather than allow toxic prescription drugs to take charge of you." ~Ben Fuchs
Ben Fuchs is a nutritional pharmacist from Colorado. He specializes in using nutritional supplements when other healthcare practitioners use toxic pharmaceutical drugs. He is the founder and formulator of Truth Treatment Systems for skin care, host of The Bright Side syndicated radio show, a member of Youngevity's Scientific Advisory Board, health expert and frequent guest on Coast to Coast am with George Noory. "The human body is a healing and regenerating system, designed divinely to heal & renew itself on a moment to moment basis." "Take charge of your biochemistry through foods and supplements, rather than allow toxic prescription drugs to take charge of you." ~Ben Fuchs

Activated Charcoal for Detox, Food Poisoning & Hangovers

By Ben Fuchs | PharmacistBen

So what exactly is activated charcoal, the ancient healing substance that has become all the rage in the beauty and skin care business? Simply put, it’s burnt wood that has been magically transformed into a powerful poison filter that can reduce the absorption of drugs, chemicals, and other toxins, by up to 60%.

To make activated charcoal, wood is burnt in the absence of oxygen at extremely high temperatures, up to 1600 degrees Fahrenheit, to create a black substance called char. The net result is a type of material sometimes referred to as vegetable carbon, that is tremendously porous, with a remarkable surface area; two teaspoons full of activated charcoal has the surface area of an entire football field.

Activated Charcoal for Detox, Food Poisoning & Hangovers

By Self (en:User:Ravedave) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY 2.5 ]

This amplification of porosity and surface area gives activated charcoal its amazing ability to ‘absorb’ toxins. Adsorption (with an “AD”) is a phenomenon whereby chemicals stick to a surface via chemical attraction. This distinguishes it from absorption (with an “AB”), which can be defined as the complete assimilation of one material into another, as water is into a sponge. Because of the tremendous increase in the surface area created by the activation process, activated charcoal can adsorb many times its weight in toxins. This makes the fine black powder incredibly valuable as an antidote for poisons, which readily adhere to the large surface area of the pores like paper clips to a magnet.

That’s why activated charcoal is considered a must-have in pharmacies, first aid kits and medicine cabinets around the world. And, it’s considered first-line treatment for accidental poisoning in most emergency rooms. Perhaps the most famous example of activated charcoal’s astounding anti-poison properties was the case of Professor Touery, who in 1831 drank 15 grams of strychnine (that is ten times the lethal dose) in front of his medical associates without issue simply because he mixed the deadly substance with activated charcoal.

According to a 2001 study published in the journal “Pediatrics”, activated charcoal can be an effective home treatment for accidental poisonings. In the study, researchers from the Kentucky Regional Poison Center found that poisoned patients who used activated charcoal at home before they got to an emergency room had significantly improved outcomes. The researchers concluded that intestinal detoxification “… at home using activated charcoal, in appropriate circumstances, may reduce the number of cases that require treatment in a health care facility”.

Personally, I keep a bottle of activated charcoal capsules in my medicine cabinet at home, and I had a ten-pound jar of it at my pharmacy for years. I’ve used it for food poisoning, to reduce unpleasant digestive symptoms like gas and bloating and for dealing with the stomach flu. It has also been recommended for accelerating recovery from a hangover after a night of too much celebration, although the recent literature suggests it may not be effective. Externally, you can make a paste with it – blend it with olive oil and perhaps a bit of bentonite and apply it to the affected area – and it can draw out infection or even spider venom.

Activated charcoal, as many cosmetic companies are discovering, can also be used cosmetically to great effect. A quick Google search for “activated charcoal in beauty products” reveals at least 26 different topical products that feature the fine black powder. It’s also found in shampoos, bath salts, deodorant and anti-fungal creams for athlete’s foot.

You can buy activated charcoal in most drug stores or online. It comes in capsule and tablet forms. You can also buy the straight powder, which is much more cost-effective, at around 20 -25 dollars a pound (100 capsules = around ¼ pound) although a little less convenient to use. A typical anti-poison dose is around 12 tablespoons of the power (15-30 capsules) dissolved into or taken with 3 or 4 glasses of water.

Did you know…
-Activated charcoal also makes a great tooth whitener. Simply sprinkle some on a wet toothbrush and scrub teeth for 2 to 3 minute. Make sure you rinse well, otherwise your tooth whitener will leave your teeth pretty black!
-You can add a teaspoonful of activated charcoal to some bentonite clay, mix in a cup or so of apple cider vinegar or aloe vera gel and water to make a paste and apply to blemishes as a spot treatment or to the entire face as an anti-acne mask.
-You can make a great detox cleanser by melting some coconut oil, add some activated charcoal and baking powder. Stir powders in gently as the coconut oil cools and use as a skin softener and purifier. Use a drop or two of lavender or tea tree oil to boost the anti-bacterial properties and add some aromatherapy benefits to your homemade coconut charcoal scrub.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Check Thyroid Health with the Basal Thermometer Test

By Ben Fuchs | PharmacistBen

One of the easiest and most effective ways to check for thyroid health is the ‘Basal Thermometer Test’ developed by Dr. Broda Barnes, one of the first physicians to recognize the importance of thyroid health when it comes to overall wellness. He wrote the classic book on hypothyroidism called “Hypothyroidism, The Unsuspected Illness” in the 1970’s, and he was of the opinion that numerous health issues including heart disease, cancer, depression, arthritis, diabetes, frequent colds or infections, tonsillitis, ear infections, PMS and other female health issues as well as skin disorders, were all caused by a poorly functioning thyroid. Barnes thought that hypothyroidism affected more than 40% of the American population, which was much higher than most doctors at the time. However, perspectives are changing as hypothyroidism is becoming more and more recognized as a health problem.

Thyroid Health

By Almonroth (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0]

The test, which is sometimes called the ‘Barnes Basal Thermometer Test’ is done by placing a thermometer in the armpit for 10 minutes, first thing in the morning. This is important. If you move around and start your day before testing, your results won’t be accurate, so you want to do the test as soon as you wake up, while you’re still in bed. Because temperature for women is a bit lower on the first day of menstruation, Barnes advised women on their periods to avoid testing themselves until their second or third day.

Personally, I would suggest women wait until they’re done with their periods entirely just to be sure. You want to test your armpit temperature for three consecutive days and then determine the average. According to Barnes, if you’re below normal body temperature, which is 97.8 degrees, this can be indicative of hypothyroidism, especially if you have other symptoms. On the other hand, a reading over 97.8 degrees, according to Barnes, could indicate hyperthyroidism, again, especially if there are other symptoms present.

If it turns out you’re suffering from hypothyroidism, and nearly 10 percent of Americans are, it’s unlikely that using iodine supplements will make much of a difference. I’m not saying that iodine is not an important mineral; iodine is important, particularly for glandular health and for the production of thyroid hormone. If you are blatantly deficient, you may notice some benefits, but most hypothyroid patients are not suffering from a lack of iodine. The same goes for thyroid hormone drugs (levothyroxine), which may or may not provide the hypothyroid body with a little hormone activity, but will not do anything to correct the condition.

Hypothyroidism is typically the result of digestive health issues, blood sugar problems and chronic stress (adrenal) gland activity. That means the best strategy for dealing with hypothyroidism is the same strategy used when dealing with any other health challenge:

#1 Work on digestive health (using digestive enzymes and apple cider vinegar with meals, eating fermented foods, using probiotics and eliminating problem foods).

#2 Stabilize blood sugar by eating less starchy and processed carbs (like cereal, as well as sweets and desserts), using supplements like selenium, sulfur, chromium, vanadium and the B-vitamins (among many others) and enjoying fiber-rich veggies with all meals.

#3 Focus on adrenal health with relaxation strategies and deep breathing, reduce sugar intake, and use nutritional supplementation including zinc, Vitamin C, the B-complex and magnesium. Progesterone cream may help, likewise pregnenolone and DHEA.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Iron: The Fundamental Element

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

(Pharmacist Ben)Iron, though birthed in the interior stars, is perhaps the most fundamental element of life on earth. In fact, it would be difficult to find a multi-cellular organism on our little blue planet that can survive without the third most abundant of her elements (after silicon and oxygen).

In the human body, nutritional iron is an essential component of hundreds of enzymes and proteins. One of the most noticeable signs of iron deficiency is that you just don’t feel so good! That’s because one of iron’s most important roles is to deliver energizing oxygen to cells and remove toxic carbon dioxide.

Iron, the Fundamental ElementFor decades, iron supplements have been regarded as a panacea for most cases of the “blahs”. There are two types of iron found in foods: heme iron from meat and fish and non-heme iron found in meat, fish and vegetables. Of the two, heme iron is easier to absorb. Non-soaked grains and legumes as well as soy and compounds in tea, wine and coffee further hinder bio-availability. Vitamin C can improve the absorption of non-heme iron, so squeeze lots of lemon juice on your spinach!

One important note about iron: you can have too much of a good thing. Iron is so critical to the body that most of it is recycled, not excreted or used up. And because of its highly electrical nature, iron overload can be a problem. Woman lose iron through menstruation and studies show that blood donors have lower rates of disease and are generally healthier than average. Non-blood donor men however, especially those consuming a lot of meat, may be at risk for iron overload. Unless you’re deficient, the best way to make sure you are getting enough iron is through quality heme iron sources and lots of iron containing plant foods like beans, chard, avocado and the aforementioned spinach.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Nutrition

The Health of Hair Depends on Internal Nutrients. Hair is Dead!

By Ben Fuchs | PharmacistBen

The Health of Hair Depends on Internal Nutrients. Hair is dead!

(PharmacistBen) Hair is dead! By the time the skin appendage has left its hidden home and birthplace in the follicle, and becomes a visible strand of substance, it is nothing more than a hard shell. Because this shell is largely composed only of dead cells filled with protein, the same stuff that makes up human fingernails as well a horse hoofs and rhino horns, trying to enhance hair’s appearance and texture with topical products is like putting lipstick on a corpse. But that doesn’t mean we can’t try!

Throughout history luxurious locks have been honored as a sign of fertility, virility, overall vigor and well-being. Men and women around the world have used a wide range of materials to improve its appearance. From ingredients, like the olive oil infused dead lizards or boiled bulls blood (!) used by ancient Egyptians and Greeks, to the more sophisticated high tech chemicals with difficult to pronounce monikers, like “quaternary ammonium complexes” and “polysiloxanes”, all manner of substances synthetic, natural, benign and toxic have been applied to the tresses to encourage growth, shine, thickness and bounce among other desirable characteristics.

Hair is mostly made up of protein. That’s why the more popular hair care ingredients found in modern shampoos and conditioners are the chemically modified extracts of protein-rich grain and seeds. These derivatives purport to enter into the surface of the nonliving hair shaft to provide support and protection by filling in gaps and repairing microscopic defects. Most include an amino acid called “cysteine”. Cysteine contains a little piece of sulfur, the element that is responsible for hair’s resilience and strength. From a quantum chemistry perspective the electronic nature of sulfur makes it very magnetic. It holds on to things and doesn’t let them go, like a really powerful heavy duty magnet. This micro-magnetic grip creates hardness on the macro level. Thus defining cysteine’s role in strengthening the hair shaft (as well as bone, joints and cartilage).

There are various ways manufacturers can leverage the power of cysteine for their hair care products. While you’ll rarely see the actual amino itself listed on your product’s ingredient deck, what you will often find is some kind hydrolyzed protein. Whether it’s from wheat, barley, soy or some other plant product, these hydrolyzed proteins, which contain a significant amount of the hair hardening amino acid, can, theoretically at least, be released and delivered into the hair shaft as your shampoo or conditioner is being applied.

The major cysteine containing protein in the hair (and for that matter in nails and skin) is called “keratin” and oftentimes shampoos and conditioners manufacturers will include it as an ingredient in their formulations. L’Oréal, Jason and TRESemme among other companies all have hair products that feature keratin and there’s also hair styling products that have keratin in them. If you do a google search for keratin and shampoo, you’ll find over 5 million hits and if you just take a walk through the shampoo section at Walmart or your favorite grocery store you’ll find dozens of shampoos with names like Keranique and Keralique and Suave with keratin as well as keratin hair oils and keratin conditioners.

Do they work? Probably not. Remember, hair is dead and while keratin is composed of cysteine it isn’t going to be able do much to permanently change the quality of hair by simply applying it topically via a shampoo or conditioner. Keratin containing hair products are more about marketing and misinformation than actual keratin effects; at best keratin may soften hair a little bit by acting as a moisturizer. It’s possible that keratin may get deposited in the hair shaft allowing for a temporary strengthening effect, although that too is unlikely.

In the salon world hair stylists CAN make use of keratin and cysteine in a product called the Brazilian Blowout, which is basically a hair straightening treatment utilizing heat and cysteine that breaks and reforms the protein bonds in curly frizzy hair, turning it into smooth straight hair that can last for weeks. Previously most hair relaxers and straighteners simply used heat with a very harsh “alkalinizer” like lye and potassium hydroxide. As it turns out, by using cysteine, typically in in the form of keratin, Brazilian blowout and similar products manage to avoid the use of harsh chemicals and still achieve good hair straightening results. However in recent years it has come to the attention of the FDA and OSHA and other researchers that the Brazilian Blowout product actually achieved their fantastic results with formaldehyde, a not very pleasant carcinogenic chemical that’s used to preserve corpses. An OSHA study found 60 times the allowable level of Formaldehyde in one Brazilian blowout product, which comprised, at least according to OSHA, 12 % of the product. That’s a lot of formaldehyde! In any case whether or not there is formaldehyde in these kinds of products, hair straightening is by its very nature an aggressive procedure, because the hair’s natural cysteine bonds are so darn strong it takes really aggressive treatments to break them.

Ultimately, like everything else in the body, the health of hair depends on internal nutrients that are ingested, digested and delivered through the blood. That means eating cysteine is a way more important and better option for taking care of your tresses than applying it directly to your hair. Once a hair pokes out of a follicle on the head it is dead tissue. Now that’s not to say that nothing can be done with the appearance of the hair once it leaves the scalp. While it may not be living tissue, it is porous and can absorb certain materials from topical products to improve its appearance. But if your hair doesn’t seem to be healthy, if it’s limp or brittle and dry, you are probably dealing with an internal issue more than a topical hair issue.

Most importantly, hair structure depends on protein, especially the sulfur containing proteins found largely in animal foods, dairy (especially whey), eggs fish and meats. For vegetarians, beans and grains can provide sulfur proteins. Consider using digestive enzymes and apple cider vinegar with protein foods to help release the amino acids and make them more accessible to the hair making cells in the scalp. Using supplements like NAC (as a source of cysteine) and MSM (readily usable sulfur) as supplements can contribute to the pool or raw material for making hair, without violating vegetarian vows. Follicular health depends on Vitamin C, so make sure you’re eating lots of veggies and citrus fruits. You might want to think about supplementing with a gram or two on a daily basis. The B-vitamins, most especially biotin and pantothenic acid has historically been recognized as important for improving cellular energy. Because hair growth is typically rapid, improving the energy levels of follicular cells may provide significant benefits. No nutrient is more important for the hair than zinc, which not only stimulates its synthesis and growth inside the hair follicle, but also helps balance out the excess male hormones that are associated with hair thinning and loss. Zinc is also involved in hundreds of different biochemical reactions associated with health. Using 50mhg a day of the picolinate form (Zinc Picolinate) will not only keep hair healthy but can also provide general salutatory benefits for the whole body.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Why I Love MLM

By Ben Fuchs | PharmacistBen

Why I Love MLM

(PharmacistBen) I’ve been doing “multi-level marketing” (MLM) my whole adult life. While some folks consider MLM to be a scam, based on my experience, that’s just plain unfortunate. In many ways MLM is the ultimate egalitarian business. It’s person to person, extremely accountable and a great way to connect with our fellow human beings.

I remember when MLM first came on my radar back when it first dawned on me that I was going to need to figure my money thing out. I was about 22 years old, married with a kid on the way, and unemployed. I was doing all kinds of odd jobs and barely making ends meet, while borrowing from Peter to pay Paul where Peter was my parents and Paul was the IRS. I had student loans and dozens of other financial obligations I had to settle up.

Then one day, my upstairs neighbor Cynthia invited me to a dinner event. It was there that I was introduced to multi-level marketing for the first time and I was blown away. The stories seemed unbelievable, but everyone was so inspired that I signed up and paid my enrollment fee. While it took me a few years to really take advantage of everything MLM had to offer, I eventually found out the promises were legit. Today, nearly 35 years later, I’m a believer and I can report that MLM is the most user-friendly, elegant and egalitarian business model you could ever participate in.

First of all, the most important thing to recognize about “network marketing”, or MLM, is that it is nothing more than a business model. It is just another way of doing business. MLM is simply a marketing framework, a way to present the traditional, capitalist, buy/sell business structure that most of us would agree is the most effective economic strategy ever devised. There are all kinds of business models. McDonalds, Burger King and Midas have a business model called “franchising”. Wal-Mart and Kmart use a business model called “retail”. While Amway, Herbalife and Youngevity use a business model called “MLM”.

MLM is a business model for the average person. It’s a business model that regular Joe’s and Jane’s can participate in for start up costs that are next to nothing. For what is usually a thousand dollars in inventory and marketing materials, you can own a enterprise with all the perks of owning a business, including controlling your income and setting your own work schedule.

You can also enjoy tax benefits, like writing off expenses, including rent, utilities, gas, samples, paper clips and whatever else you’re using to support your business. MLM is legitimate business, and when you are participating in it, you own your own business. You’re the boss, though you have no employees and little or no inventory.

MLM is the ideal model for the independent-minded entrepreneur who believes in lifting himself up by their bootstraps. It’s perfect for the housewife or student who wants to make a little bit of money to pay some bills. Most people can easily make a couple hundred bucks of extra cash within 30 days. It’s also an ideal business model for people who want to make a lot of money; some folks become millionaires via MLM.

Another benefit is that the income is residual. Once you get started, checks just keep coming in. If you have a good product, something people are going to use anyway, then it’s really just a question of asking people to try your product and buy it.

But if “network marketing” was only about the individual, it wouldn’t work, because it wouldn’t be a network! In fact “network marketing”, or “multi-level marketing”, is about the group as much as it is about the individual. That’s because the individual’s success is largely determined by how effectively you can create and lead a team.

It is ultimately a team-building experience and opportunity, because success and financial compensation are almost solely dependent on the participation of multiple players. It is, after all, composed of multiple levels, each of which can be thought of as a type of team. If you can grow a team and lead it, you’re going to make money. In fact, the MLM model rewards this skill set more than any other.

So how does your team grow? Well, like any business, you need a good product and you have to show it off. Give yourself opportunities by sharing with everyone you meet. When it comes right down to it, once you have a viable quality product to sell, there’s only two steps involved in demonstrating how great your product is and beginning a strong and rewarding MLM business.

Number one: Ask people to try it. Just ask. If your product is valuable, after trying it once, people will be asking you for more. “How can I buy this stuff?” Or even better: “How can I participate?”

Number two: you need to be able to inspire and motivate 3 or 4 people who will function as your lieutenants. These 3 or 4 people you can motivate and inspire to be as motivated and inspired as you are. It’s really as simple as that. “Ask and inspire”, period! MLM is a business for the inspired. That’s why the MLM business is filled with motivated and enthusiastic men and women. When you hang out in the world of MLM, you are spending time with passionate, pumped-up people.

Perhaps the most beautiful thing about MLM is the organizational structure. Like most business, it’s hierarchical. There are levels above levels above levels. Like other business models, the success of the lower levels depends on the success of the upper. Business owners have to do well or their employees won’t have jobs. In a “multi-level marketing” framework, upline success flows downward to downlines. However, unlike other business models, in an MLM context, the success of the upper levels depends also on the success of those underneath. Uplines depend on downlines and downlines depend on uplines. In MLM, there is a built-in, “win-win” relationship, where the association between levels is mutually beneficial. You are teaching, mentoring and creating successful downlines, while the people you sign up are contributing to your wealth. Their success depends on your success and yours is dependent on theirs.

MLM amplifies our connectivity and cements our relationships . It’s friends helping friends. It’s the business model combined with the friendship model. What the heck is the problem with that?

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Youngevity