Bee Venom Therapy Hazel Crest IL

Some versions of the rapeseed plant do contain erucic acid, which can be toxic, but this substance has been almost entirely bred out of the plants used to make canola oil today.

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Housecalls—Lowdown on Canola Oil, Bee Venom Therapy, Getting Rid of Warts

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Canola Conundrum
Q I’ve been hearing that certain types of canola oil aren’t healthy—can you clarify?

A
There’s a lot of misinformation out there about this oil. Canola oil, made from the seeds of the rapeseed plant, is low in saturated fat and contains alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), one of the health-promoting omega-3 fatty acids. But it’s not uncommon for the makers of supermarket brands to use petroleum-based chemicals to extract the oil from the seeds. Such oils are also heated during the refining process, which reduces their level of omega-3s.

The other worry about canola is basically groundless. Some versions of the rapeseed plant do contain erucic acid, which can be toxic, but this substance has been almost entirely bred out of the plants used to make canola oil today.
Your best bet is to choose an organic version that’s labeled “cold pressed” and that contains more than 20 percent ALA.

Cold pressing uses a mechanical press to squeeze the oil, generating less heat and leaving more of the omega-3s intact. By choosing organic, you avoid genetically modified organisms, since organic oils can’t come from such seeds.

One caveat: Canola oil produced this way has a lower “smoke point,” so you shouldn’t use it for high-temperature cooking like stir-frying; not only will it taste bitter, it can break down and cause damaging free radicals to form. (Grapeseed oil is a better choice.)

Humdinger Pain Helper
Q Can bee venom therapy help with my arthritis?

A It just might. Formal research on this topic is scant, but there’s a lot of anecdotal evidence to suggest that bee venom can indeed make a difference for both osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis. “Bee venom contains several anti-inflammatory compounds,” says physician Andrew Kochan, director of the Kochan Institute for Healing Arts Research in Encino, California. “It has one particular agent that’s a hundred times more powerful than hydrocortisone.” Happily, stinging isn’t required; most practitioners inject a bee venom solution into the skin instead. Kochan says his arthritis patients start getting relief after just a couple of treatments.

You should be prepared, though, for the same minor side effects that come from being stung by a bee, namely swelling, itchiness, and redness. (Anyone allergic to bee or wasp stings, of course, should steer clear.) Finding a practitioner who uses bee venom therapy may take some legwork, as it’s not widely available. For more information, contact the American Apitherapy Society at www.apitherapy.org .

Warts Begone
Q Are there simple ways to get rid of warts?

A Most warts are harmless and eventually go away on their own, but most of us would prefer not to wait around. A physician can freeze them off with liquid nitrogen; you can freeze them at home with a new over-the-counter product called Wartner; or you can use an OTC salicylic acid product. But these treatments can require several rounds, and sometimes sting or leave you with blisters.

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