Kudzu

Description: Kudzu, whose botanical name is Pueraria lobata, is a member of the Fabaceae legume family. It is also known as Ge-gen, kudzu vine, mile-a-minute vine, foot-a-night vine, and the vine-that-ate-the-South. The latter names refer to this vine’s property of rapid growth. This perennial trails, climbs, and winds its rough vines around tree poles and anything else it touches. It grows in shady areas, mountain areas, fields, roadsides and forests in China, Japan, and the southern United States, more so in the latter because when imported, its native insects did not tag along. Kudzu was first seen in the United States as an ornamental plant at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition.

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Description: Kudzu, whose botanical name is Pueraria lobata, is a member of the Fabaceae legume family. It is also known as Ge-gen, kudzu vine, mile-a-minute vine, foot-a-night vine, and the vine-that-ate-the-South. The latter names refer to this vine’s property of rapid growth. This perennial trails, climbs, and winds its rough vines around tree poles and anything else it touches. It grows in shady areas, mountain areas, fields, roadsides and forests in China, Japan, and the southern United States, more so in the latter because when imported, its native insects did not tag along. Kudzu was first seen in the United States as an ornamental plant at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition.

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Kombucha

Description: Kombucha is a fermented beverage prepared from a mushroom (Fungus japonicus). Known as kombucha tea, the drink is touted for its health-promoting properties. It is also called Manchurian mushroom tea, Manchurian fungus tea, Kwassan, combucha tea, and champagne of life. During fermentation and preparation, the kombucha membrane becomes a tough gelatinous cover composed of several different yeasts (one-celled fungi) and certain nontoxic bacteria derived from the air, similar to a sourdough bread starter. When the fungus is fermented in a mixture containing water, black or green tea, sugar, and vinegar (or other fermentation source), the microorganisms combine into a complex fermenting culture. This culture produces several compounds that have been

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Description: Kombucha is a fermented beverage prepared from a mushroom (Fungus japonicus). Known as kombucha tea, the drink is touted for its health-promoting properties. It is also called Manchurian mushroom tea, Manchurian fungus tea, Kwassan, combucha tea, and champagne of life. During fermentation and preparation, the kombucha membrane becomes a tough gelatinous cover composed of several different yeasts (one-celled fungi) and certain nontoxic bacteria derived from the air, similar to a sourdough bread starter. When the fungus is fermented in a mixture containing water, black or green tea, sugar, and vinegar (or other fermentation source), the microorganisms combine into a complex fermenting culture. This culture produces several compounds that have been

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Kola nut

Description: The kola nut, or bitter cola, (Cola vera, Cola acuminata, Cola nitida) is a seed part from a tree from the Sterculiaceae family. The trees are native to Central and Western Africa, but are now found in the West Indies and Kola nut plant. Brazil, where they were introduced by African slaves. All three species are used as a stimulant and are prepared in the same manner. The kola tree grows to approximately 40 ft (12 m) in height, and has white to yellow flowers with spots that range from red to purple. The kola tree’s leaves are 6-8 in long (15-20 cm) and the tree bears fruit that is

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Description: The kola nut, or bitter cola, (Cola vera, Cola acuminata, Cola nitida) is a seed part from a tree from the Sterculiaceae family. The trees are native to Central and Western Africa, but are now found in the West Indies and Kola nut plant. Brazil, where they were introduced by African slaves. All three species are used as a stimulant and are prepared in the same manner. The kola tree grows to approximately 40 ft (12 m) in height, and has white to yellow flowers with spots that range from red to purple. The kola tree’s leaves are 6-8 in long (15-20 cm) and the tree bears fruit that is

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Kneipp wellness

Definition: Kneipp wellness is a holistic system for overall health developed by Sebastian Kneipp, a nineteenth-century Bavarian priest. His approach included aspects of hydrotherapy, herbalism, and aerobic exercise.(Betmann/CORBIS. Reproduced by permission.)Born in Stephansreid, Bavaria, Germany, of poor parents, Sebastian Kneipp’s childhood was filled with labor, much of it learning weaving from his father. Even as a child, Kneipp wanted to become a priest. With the help of a priest who befriended him, Kneipp entered high school where he studied theology for five years. During this time, he contracted consumption (pulmonary tuberculosis), usually a fatal disease at that time. While ill, he read an eighteenth-century book on hydrotherapy by Dr. Hahn. This

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Definition: Kneipp wellness is a holistic system for overall health developed by Sebastian Kneipp, a nineteenth-century Bavarian priest. His approach included aspects of hydrotherapy, herbalism, and aerobic exercise.(Betmann/CORBIS. Reproduced by permission.)Born in Stephansreid, Bavaria, Germany, of poor parents, Sebastian Kneipp’s childhood was filled with labor, much of it learning weaving from his father. Even as a child, Kneipp wanted to become a priest. With the help of a priest who befriended him, Kneipp entered high school where he studied theology for five years. During this time, he contracted consumption (pulmonary tuberculosis), usually a fatal disease at that time. While ill, he read an eighteenth-century book on hydrotherapy by Dr. Hahn. This

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Knee pain

Definition: Knee pain refers to any aching or burning pain in the knee joint. Knee pain can be a symptom of numerous conditions and diseases, including knee stress, osteoarthritis, injury, gout, infection, and bursitis. Description: Knee pain is very common. Each year, millions of Americans visit the doctor for knee pain. It is the most frequent reason for visits to an orthopedist (bone and joint surgeon).To understand the various causes of knee pain, it is important to know how the knee functions. The knee refers to the joint where the femur (thigh bone) meets the tibia (largest lower leg bone). In front of this joint lies the patella (knee cap). The

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Definition: Knee pain refers to any aching or burning pain in the knee joint. Knee pain can be a symptom of numerous conditions and diseases, including knee stress, osteoarthritis, injury, gout, infection, and bursitis. Description: Knee pain is very common. Each year, millions of Americans visit the doctor for knee pain. It is the most frequent reason for visits to an orthopedist (bone and joint surgeon).To understand the various causes of knee pain, it is important to know how the knee functions. The knee refers to the joint where the femur (thigh bone) meets the tibia (largest lower leg bone). In front of this joint lies the patella (knee cap). The

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Kirlian photography

Definition: Kirlian photography creates a photographic image by placing the object or body part to be photographed on film or photographic paper and exposing it to an electromagnetic field. OriginsAlthough experiments with photographing objects exposed to an electrical field are known to have been carried out as early as the 1890s, Kirlian photography is generally said to have originated with the work of a pair of Soviet scientists, Semyon and Valentina Kirlian, beginning around 1939. Over the next several decades at Kazakh State University, the Kirlians developed electrophotographic techniques that used neither a lens nor a camera. By the 1960s, their work had attracted public attention in the Soviet Union. Interest

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Definition: Kirlian photography creates a photographic image by placing the object or body part to be photographed on film or photographic paper and exposing it to an electromagnetic field. OriginsAlthough experiments with photographing objects exposed to an electrical field are known to have been carried out as early as the 1890s, Kirlian photography is generally said to have originated with the work of a pair of Soviet scientists, Semyon and Valentina Kirlian, beginning around 1939. Over the next several decades at Kazakh State University, the Kirlians developed electrophotographic techniques that used neither a lens nor a camera. By the 1960s, their work had attracted public attention in the Soviet Union. Interest

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Kidney stones

Definition: Kidney stones are solid accumulations of material that form in the tubal system of the kidney. Kidney stones cause problems when they block the flow of urine through or out of the kidney. When the stones move through the ureter, they cause severe pain. Description: Urine is formed by the kidneys. Blood flows into the kidneys, and nephrons (specialized tubes) within the kidneys allow a certain amount of fluid from the blood, and certain substances dissolved in that fluid, to flow out of the body as urine. Sometimes, a problem causes the dissolved substances to become solid again. Tiny crystals may form in the urine, meet, and cling together to

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Definition: Kidney stones are solid accumulations of material that form in the tubal system of the kidney. Kidney stones cause problems when they block the flow of urine through or out of the kidney. When the stones move through the ureter, they cause severe pain. Description: Urine is formed by the kidneys. Blood flows into the kidneys, and nephrons (specialized tubes) within the kidneys allow a certain amount of fluid from the blood, and certain substances dissolved in that fluid, to flow out of the body as urine. Sometimes, a problem causes the dissolved substances to become solid again. Tiny crystals may form in the urine, meet, and cling together to

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Kidney infections

Definition: Kidney infection is a general term used to describe infection of the kidney by bacteria, fungi, or viruses. The infecting microbe may have invaded the kidney from the urinary bladder or from the bloodstream. The disease is characterized by fever, chills, back pain, and, often, the symptoms associated with bladder infection. Description: As the principle part of the urinary system, the kidneys process the fluid component of blood (called plasma) to maintain appropriate water volume and concentrations of chemicals. The waste product formed from this process is called urine. Urine travels from the kidney, through tubes called ureters, to the urinary bladder, and is eliminated from the body through a

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Definition: Kidney infection is a general term used to describe infection of the kidney by bacteria, fungi, or viruses. The infecting microbe may have invaded the kidney from the urinary bladder or from the bloodstream. The disease is characterized by fever, chills, back pain, and, often, the symptoms associated with bladder infection. Description: As the principle part of the urinary system, the kidneys process the fluid component of blood (called plasma) to maintain appropriate water volume and concentrations of chemicals. The waste product formed from this process is called urine. Urine travels from the kidney, through tubes called ureters, to the urinary bladder, and is eliminated from the body through a

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Kelp

Description: Kelp (Fucus vesiculosus) is a type of brown seaweed, moderate in size, that grows in regions with cold Kelp Kelp leaves floating in water. coastlines, including those of the northwestern United States and northern Europe. There are several varieties of kelp: true kelp, which thrives in cool seas; giant kelp, and bladder kelp, which grow in the North Pacific. Giant kelp is so named because it grows to 213 ft (65 m). Kelp anchors itself to rocky surfaces via tentacle-like roots. From these roots grows a slender stalk with long, leaflike blades.Kelp belongs to the Fucaceae family. Other names for Fucus vesiculosus are kelpware, black-tang, bladder-fucus, cutweed, and bladderwrack. The

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Description: Kelp (Fucus vesiculosus) is a type of brown seaweed, moderate in size, that grows in regions with cold Kelp Kelp leaves floating in water. coastlines, including those of the northwestern United States and northern Europe. There are several varieties of kelp: true kelp, which thrives in cool seas; giant kelp, and bladder kelp, which grow in the North Pacific. Giant kelp is so named because it grows to 213 ft (65 m). Kelp anchors itself to rocky surfaces via tentacle-like roots. From these roots grows a slender stalk with long, leaflike blades.Kelp belongs to the Fucaceae family. Other names for Fucus vesiculosus are kelpware, black-tang, bladder-fucus, cutweed, and bladderwrack. The

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Kelley-Gonzalez diet

Definition: Kelley-Gonzalez diet The Kelley-Gonzalez diet consists of large amounts of raw fruits, juices, raw and steamed vegetables, cereals, and nuts. When combined with massive quantities of dietary supplements and freeze-dried pancreatic enzymes, together with a “detoxification” process involving coffee enemas, it is said to slow the growth of cancer tumors. OriginsThe Kelley-Gonzalez regimen is based on a belief that enzymes from the pancreas are capable, like chemotherapy, of killing cancer cells. The use of pancreatic enzymes to treat cancer was first proposed in 1906 by John Beard, a Scottish embryologist. This idea received some attention at the time but was largely abandoned after Beard died in 1923. During the 1960s,

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Definition: Kelley-Gonzalez diet The Kelley-Gonzalez diet consists of large amounts of raw fruits, juices, raw and steamed vegetables, cereals, and nuts. When combined with massive quantities of dietary supplements and freeze-dried pancreatic enzymes, together with a “detoxification” process involving coffee enemas, it is said to slow the growth of cancer tumors. OriginsThe Kelley-Gonzalez regimen is based on a belief that enzymes from the pancreas are capable, like chemotherapy, of killing cancer cells. The use of pancreatic enzymes to treat cancer was first proposed in 1906 by John Beard, a Scottish embryologist. This idea received some attention at the time but was largely abandoned after Beard died in 1923. During the 1960s,

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Kegel exercises

Definition: Kegel exercises (Kegels) are exercises designed to strengthen the muscles of the lower pelvic girdle, or pelvic floor-the pubococcygeal (PC) muscles. The PC muscles support the bladder, urethra, and urethral sphincter-the muscle group at the neck of the bladder that acts as a spigot for controlling urine flow into the urethra-and the vagina, uterus, and rectum. Anything that puts pressure on the abdomen can weaken or damage these pelvic muscles. Such conditions include pregnancy, childbirth, excess weight, hormonal changes, and aging. Kegel exercises enable the PC muscles to better withstand increases in intra-abdominal pressure (pressure inside the abdomen). They make the bladder, urethra, and vagina more resilient, and improve bladder

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Definition: Kegel exercises (Kegels) are exercises designed to strengthen the muscles of the lower pelvic girdle, or pelvic floor-the pubococcygeal (PC) muscles. The PC muscles support the bladder, urethra, and urethral sphincter-the muscle group at the neck of the bladder that acts as a spigot for controlling urine flow into the urethra-and the vagina, uterus, and rectum. Anything that puts pressure on the abdomen can weaken or damage these pelvic muscles. Such conditions include pregnancy, childbirth, excess weight, hormonal changes, and aging. Kegel exercises enable the PC muscles to better withstand increases in intra-abdominal pressure (pressure inside the abdomen). They make the bladder, urethra, and vagina more resilient, and improve bladder

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Kava kava

Description: Kava kava (Piper methysticum) is a tropical shrub that grows throughout the Pacific Islands. Kava kava belongs to the pepper family (Piperaceae) and is also known as kava, asava pepper, or intoxicating pepper. It grows to an average height of 6 ft (1.83 m) and has large heart-shaped leaves that can grow to 10 in (25.4 cm) wide. A related species is Piper sanctum, a native plant of Mexico that is used as a stimulant.Kava kava has been used as a medicinal herb for hundreds of years and used by Pacific Islanders to treat rheumatism, asthma, worms, obesity, headaches, fungal infections, leprosy, gonorrhea, vaginal infections, urinary infections, menstrual problems, migraine

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Description: Kava kava (Piper methysticum) is a tropical shrub that grows throughout the Pacific Islands. Kava kava belongs to the pepper family (Piperaceae) and is also known as kava, asava pepper, or intoxicating pepper. It grows to an average height of 6 ft (1.83 m) and has large heart-shaped leaves that can grow to 10 in (25.4 cm) wide. A related species is Piper sanctum, a native plant of Mexico that is used as a stimulant.Kava kava has been used as a medicinal herb for hundreds of years and used by Pacific Islanders to treat rheumatism, asthma, worms, obesity, headaches, fungal infections, leprosy, gonorrhea, vaginal infections, urinary infections, menstrual problems, migraine

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Kaposi’s sarcoma

Definition: Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), also called multiple idiopathic hemorrhagic sarcoma, is a neoplastic disease associated especially with AIDS, usually affecting the skin and mucous membranes. Description: Causes & symptoms Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS) is caused by herpesvirus 8. Malignant cells are found in the tissues under the skin or mucous membranes that line the mouth, nose, and anus. KS causes red or purple patches on the skin and/or mucous membranes and spread to other organs, such as the lungs, liver, or intestinal tract. KS is seen in three forms:- indolent- lymphadenopathic- AIDS-relatedThe primary distinction between the three forms of KS is the rate of growth and the location of the lesions. In

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Definition: Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), also called multiple idiopathic hemorrhagic sarcoma, is a neoplastic disease associated especially with AIDS, usually affecting the skin and mucous membranes. Description: Causes & symptoms Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS) is caused by herpesvirus 8. Malignant cells are found in the tissues under the skin or mucous membranes that line the mouth, nose, and anus. KS causes red or purple patches on the skin and/or mucous membranes and spread to other organs, such as the lungs, liver, or intestinal tract. KS is seen in three forms:- indolent- lymphadenopathic- AIDS-relatedThe primary distinction between the three forms of KS is the rate of growth and the location of the lesions. In

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Kampo medicine

Definition: Kampo (sometimes spelled kanpo) is a Japanese variant of Chinese traditional medicine that involves the extensive use of herbs. The name is derived from the Japanese symbols kan, which means China and po, which means medicine. Kampo treatment has become very much integrated in the Japanese health care system. It is widely available from hospitals and physicians there, and is the most popular form of complementary health care in contemporary Japan. Kampo herbal preparations are sold by many Japanese pharmacies. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that Japan has the highest per capita consumption of herbal medicine in the world. In addition to herbal treatments, Kampo practitioners may also administer

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Definition: Kampo (sometimes spelled kanpo) is a Japanese variant of Chinese traditional medicine that involves the extensive use of herbs. The name is derived from the Japanese symbols kan, which means China and po, which means medicine. Kampo treatment has become very much integrated in the Japanese health care system. It is widely available from hospitals and physicians there, and is the most popular form of complementary health care in contemporary Japan. Kampo herbal preparations are sold by many Japanese pharmacies. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that Japan has the highest per capita consumption of herbal medicine in the world. In addition to herbal treatments, Kampo practitioners may also administer

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Kali bichromium

Description: Kali bichromium is a bright orange, caustic, corrosive compound used in the manufacture of dye, photography, and batteries. It is also used as a homeopathic remedy. In homeopathy, potassium bichromate is diluted to the point where it no longer retains any poisonous or caustic qualities. Homeopaths usually abbreviate kali bichromium as Kali bich. or as Kali bi. General use: Homeopathic medicine operates on the principle that “like heals like.” This principle means that a disease can be cured by treating it with products that produce the same symptoms as the disease. These products follow another homeopathic law, the Law of Infinitesimals. In opposition to traditional medicine, the Law of Infinitesimals

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Description: Kali bichromium is a bright orange, caustic, corrosive compound used in the manufacture of dye, photography, and batteries. It is also used as a homeopathic remedy. In homeopathy, potassium bichromate is diluted to the point where it no longer retains any poisonous or caustic qualities. Homeopaths usually abbreviate kali bichromium as Kali bich. or as Kali bi. General use: Homeopathic medicine operates on the principle that “like heals like.” This principle means that a disease can be cured by treating it with products that produce the same symptoms as the disease. These products follow another homeopathic law, the Law of Infinitesimals. In opposition to traditional medicine, the Law of Infinitesimals

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Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis

Definition: Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) refers to a number of different conditions, all of which strike children, and all of which have immune-mediated joint inflammation as their major manifestation. JRA is also known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis or JIA. The European League Against Rheumatism, or EULAR, refers to the disorder as juvenile chronic arthritis, or JCA. Description: The skeletal system of the body is made up of different types of strong, fibrous tissue known as connective tissue. Bone, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons are all forms of connective tissue that have different compositions, and thus different characteristics.The joints are structures that hold two or more bones together. Some joints (synovial joints) allow

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Definition: Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) refers to a number of different conditions, all of which strike children, and all of which have immune-mediated joint inflammation as their major manifestation. JRA is also known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis or JIA. The European League Against Rheumatism, or EULAR, refers to the disorder as juvenile chronic arthritis, or JCA. Description: The skeletal system of the body is made up of different types of strong, fibrous tissue known as connective tissue. Bone, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons are all forms of connective tissue that have different compositions, and thus different characteristics.The joints are structures that hold two or more bones together. Some joints (synovial joints) allow

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Juniper

Description: Juniper (Juniperus communis) is an evergreen shrub found on mountains and heaths throughout Europe, Southwest Asia, and North America. The tree grows to a height of 6-25 ft (2-8 m) and has stiff, pointed needles that grow to 0.4 in (1 cm) long. The female bears cones that produce small round bluish-black berries, which take three years to fully mature.Juniper belongs to the pine family (Cupressaceae). Juniper has diuretic, antiseptic, stomachic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antirheumatic properties. The tree’s therapeutic properties stem from a volatile oil found in the berries. This oil contains terpenes, flavonoid glycosides, tannins, sugar, tar, and resin. Terpinen-4-ol (a diuretic compound of the oil) stimulates the kidneys,

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Description: Juniper (Juniperus communis) is an evergreen shrub found on mountains and heaths throughout Europe, Southwest Asia, and North America. The tree grows to a height of 6-25 ft (2-8 m) and has stiff, pointed needles that grow to 0.4 in (1 cm) long. The female bears cones that produce small round bluish-black berries, which take three years to fully mature.Juniper belongs to the pine family (Cupressaceae). Juniper has diuretic, antiseptic, stomachic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antirheumatic properties. The tree’s therapeutic properties stem from a volatile oil found in the berries. This oil contains terpenes, flavonoid glycosides, tannins, sugar, tar, and resin. Terpinen-4-ol (a diuretic compound of the oil) stimulates the kidneys,

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Juice therapies

Definition: Juice therapy involves the consumption of the juice of raw fruit or vegetables. A person may drink juice preventively to stay healthy, to treat a medical condition like cancer, or to produce a certain outcome, such as strengthening the immune system. Three widely practiced juice therapies differ primarily in the amount of time that a person is involved in the therapy and whether other items are included in the person’s diet.For some people, adding fresh juice to their daily meal plan is sufficient. Others will embark on a juice fast for several days to cleanse their systems. Juice is also a major component of the so-called Gerson therapy diet that

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Definition: Juice therapy involves the consumption of the juice of raw fruit or vegetables. A person may drink juice preventively to stay healthy, to treat a medical condition like cancer, or to produce a certain outcome, such as strengthening the immune system. Three widely practiced juice therapies differ primarily in the amount of time that a person is involved in the therapy and whether other items are included in the person’s diet.For some people, adding fresh juice to their daily meal plan is sufficient. Others will embark on a juice fast for several days to cleanse their systems. Juice is also a major component of the so-called Gerson therapy diet that

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Journal therapy

Definition: Journal therapy is the purposeful and intentional use of a written record of one’s own thoughts or feelings to further psychological healing and personal growth. It is often used as an adjunct to many psychotherapy and recovery programs. Healthcare practitioners maintain that written expression fills a very important role in the therapeutic process by providing a mechanism of emotional expression in circumstances in which interpersonal expression is not possible or viable. Origins: People have kept journals and diaries to record dreams, memories, and thoughts since ancient times.Emotional expression has also long held a central role in the study and practice of psychology. Throughout history, psychologists have advocated the expression of

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Definition: Journal therapy is the purposeful and intentional use of a written record of one’s own thoughts or feelings to further psychological healing and personal growth. It is often used as an adjunct to many psychotherapy and recovery programs. Healthcare practitioners maintain that written expression fills a very important role in the therapeutic process by providing a mechanism of emotional expression in circumstances in which interpersonal expression is not possible or viable. Origins: People have kept journals and diaries to record dreams, memories, and thoughts since ancient times.Emotional expression has also long held a central role in the study and practice of psychology. Throughout history, psychologists have advocated the expression of

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Jojoba oil

Description: Jojoba (pronounced ho-ho-ba) oil is a vegetable oil obtained from the crushed bean of the jojoba shrub (Sim-mondsia chinenis). The jojoba shrub is native to the Sonoran Desert of northwestern Mexico and neighboring regions in Arizona and southern California. It grows in dense stands throughout that region. The woody evergreen shrub may reach 15 ft (4.5 m) in height. Jojoba has flat gray-green leathery leaves and a deep root system that make it well adapted to desert heat and drought. It has a life span of 100-200 years, depending on environmental conditions. Jojoba grows best in areas with 10-18 in (25-45 cm) of annual rainfall where temperatures seldom fall below

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Description: Jojoba (pronounced ho-ho-ba) oil is a vegetable oil obtained from the crushed bean of the jojoba shrub (Sim-mondsia chinenis). The jojoba shrub is native to the Sonoran Desert of northwestern Mexico and neighboring regions in Arizona and southern California. It grows in dense stands throughout that region. The woody evergreen shrub may reach 15 ft (4.5 m) in height. Jojoba has flat gray-green leathery leaves and a deep root system that make it well adapted to desert heat and drought. It has a life span of 100-200 years, depending on environmental conditions. Jojoba grows best in areas with 10-18 in (25-45 cm) of annual rainfall where temperatures seldom fall below

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