Choosing Alternative Therapies/Deer

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Question
QUESTION: R  U familiar with Deer Antler Velvet Extract, is it safe, do U recommend, it any information U can provide will be much appreciated - thank you

ANSWER: Hello, Ana,

I have not personally used this remedy. It is my understanding that the harvesting of the antler is done by cutting the antler off the head of a living animal. The problem with this is that it impairs the animal's ability to live a normal life in the wild. Supposedly, it is being done in a humane manner. That doesn't decrease the impact of leaving the animal without antlers. While occasionally harvesting antlers won't have a noticeable impact on a population, if there is an industry of harvesting deer antlers, this WILL have an impact. The harvesting is done before the antler is fully grown, which is probably "necessary" but means the animal is without an important body part during the time he needs it. If deer are being raised for meat, and are not taken from the wild, it may be beneficial to harvest the antlers to prevent unnecessary injury to other animals in the herd. But in my opinion, deer antlers should never be harvested from wild animals.

In short, I do not personally recommend such a practice.

There are other alternatives that are not harmful to a species. This is why I favor plant remedies, because unless a plant is harvested to extinction, it will replenish itself, especially if the harvesters also plant it and cultivate it properly (i.e. organically).

Deer antler extract is used, so I understand, to help with the growth of children. I personally have experience with liberating the growth of a child with an extreme case of failure to thrive. I did it strictly with plants and raw goat's milk. I didn't deprive any animal of a body part to do it. Failure to thrive can be due to the child's mother using addictive drugs such as marijuana or cocaine during pregnancy. The key to restarting growth is detoxification. Detoxification can be accomplished through appropriate plants. We used alfalfa sprouts, fresh raw carrot juice, kelp, oil, and goat's milk. The child who had stopped growing is now six feet tall.

There are also other remedies for arthritis, calcium deficiency, and geriatric problems. In fact, deer antlers would be a poor source of calcium because it is more of the nature of bone. Calcium that will correct a deficiency includes calcium orotate, calcium asporotate, (calcium asporotate plus whey will form calcium orotate), calcium citrate, calcium ascorbate, or chelated calcium. Combining calcium with an acid (such as ascorbic acid) makes it more bio-available. If a person wants to take calcium for osteoporosis, I do not recommend it. There are other minerals that may well be deficient, and in that case, taking calcium will result in it being deposited in the wrong tissues, including joints and arteries.

If you let me know what condition you seek to treat, I may be able to think of other remedies that could be helpful.

I hope this helps.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I saw an ad for this stuff, and this is what the ad said:
Despite their majestic features and powerful might, deer are more commonly known for their stable iron levels, slim physiques and age-proof skin.
Deer Antler Velvet Extract is harvested from the antlers of growing deer, moose, caribou, and elk prior to hardening, with no harm to the animal. Deer Antler Velvet Extract is a natural source for IGF-1, a growth factor hormone, which stimulates cell growth in bones, cartilage, and nerves. It also contains compounds that may be helpful for overall wellness, such as amino acids, prostaglandin, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, sulfur, and phosphorus. Also found in Deer Antler Velvet Extract are glucosamine and chondroitin, which has been shown to support healthy joint functions.
What are the uses of Deer Antler Velvet Extract?
Deer Antler Velvet Extract has been used for over 2,000 years in traditional Chinese medicine for a variety of ailments, including infertility, joint inflammation, and hypertension, but has quickly gained popularity in traditional medicine for a variety of health benefits. It may be helpful for:
•Decreasing Recovery Times of Damaged Nerves and Muscles
•Stabilizing Iron Levels & Preventing Anemia
•Anti-aging & Cell Repair
•Boost Mental & Memory Skills
•Increase Immune System Function
•Improving Male & Female Libido
•Restore Joint Health
•Normalizing Blood Pressure
•Reducing Cholesterol
•Prevention of Cold & Flu
•Weight Loss
Just wondering if any of this is true, I am a 50 year old female who is hypothyroid and in menopause and having symptoms of both, despite being on prescription medication - thank u!!!!!!!!

Answer
Hello, Ana,

Depriving a wild animal of a body part, even if not a threat to the life or immediately to the health of an animal, is harmful. The body part exists for a reason, and is not a useless appendage. I would not suggest it as the first thing to try for the problems you have mentioned. It is also not clear just how bio-available these benefits would be from any kind of antler extract.

There are other ways to address these health problems. For menopause, bio-identical hormones are far superior to the standard prescription medicine, which is derived from horse urine and is appropriate only for use in horses.

You may be able to find a doctor near you, who will provide you with access to bio-identical hormones, by visiting this web site:

http://www.acam.org/‎

Hypothyroidism is commonly a result of an iodine deficiency, but that is not the only cause. Most Americans are badly deficient in iodine.

For both problems, making sure you are taking as few toxins into your body as possible is critically important. The body can heal itself to some extent, but not if it's toxic. For example, fluoride in drinking water is antagonistic to iodine, so it is important to drink water free of fluoride. Natural spring water won't contain the toxic form of fluoride that is commonly put into municipal water supplies. You can usually only get natural spring water in bottles, and water should only be purchased in transparent bottles, not cloudy bottles, which contain BPA, another toxin. In some locations, you can fill your own bottles from a nearby source of spring water, made available to the public. Then you can use safe bottles. At present, I am unable to locate the link that will tell you where you can get spring water in your area. Dr. Mercola has it on his site somewhere. Read his articles on water; they often contain the link. Here are some informative articles about water:

http://www.mercola.com/article/water.htm
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/01/21/best-and-worst-bot

In these articles, Dr. Mercola recommends filtering water from city water supplies. I do not find that to be a satisfactory solution, because vital minerals may be removed, but it will not remove some of the harmful substances.

People also get fluoride from produce grown with fluoridated water, and in other liquids. People can absorb fluoride and other toxins through their skin from shower water. City water also often contains pharmaceutical drugs that were dumped into the water supply from human use, or from animal sources. Some people recommend drinking distilled water. I do not recommend it, because distilled water is a solvent, and it will absorb toxins from the container it is in, if plastic, and also will leach minerals from a person's body. Water run through a home purifier may retain some toxins. Choose your water carefully. Many people advise drinking a lot of water. I do not. Drink because you are thirsty, and stop when you are no longer thirsty. If you have excessive thirst (such as on a hot day), you may need electrolyte replenishment. You can get this from Recharge, a bottled juice drink, or from EmergenC added to water. If this quenches your thirst, then you were low on electrolytes. If you drink only when you are thirsty, bottled water isn't nearly as expensive, and the excess water you might drink will not tax your kidneys. When drinking, avoid anything that has artificial sweeteners, as they are toxic. There are many other considerations, but these are basic for the problem of iodine deficiency.

Kelp would be a good source of iodine.

See these two articles:
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/10/20/Signs-Symptoms-and
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/06/29/iodine-deficiency-

For more information about hypothyroidism, visit this link:

http://www.johndommissemd.com/

He is a good doctor who uses only natural remedies. He is located in southern Arizona, as far as I know.

IGF-1 is made naturally in the human body. The best way to address a declining production of IGF-1 is to improve your health in general, so that the body can more easily make the substances it needs. Discontinuing pharmaceutical drugs is also extremely important for detoxifying. In particular statins are very, very damaging. There is absolutely NO evidence a statin EVER helps prevent cardiovascular disease in women, so women should not take them under any circumstances. If you are taking statins, discontinuing this can improve a variety of problems. Drugs given to combat the consequences of taking statins can also be discontinued. There are natural alternatives for nearly all pharmaceutical drugs.

I hope this helps. Feel free to ask any other questions which are on your mind.

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PatG

Expertise

I can answer questions about which modalities are effective, and which are less effective, or outright quackery. I can answer questions about which modalities have a spiritual component, and explain why they do. I can advise Christians on which modalities they can practice without violating their faith. I can locate resources, that will help a person find a practitioner. I can help a person figure out what questions to ask of a practitioner, and what kind of practitioner to seek. I can also recommend internet resources for various health problems. I can discuss various martial arts, explain the theories behind them, and explain which require a spiritual component, and which rely on physical forces for their effectiveness. I have studied various religions for a number of years, and can talk about meditation techniques from a Christian point of view.

Experience

I have experience as a patient with a number of alternative therapies. I have researched many of them, and know which ones are more effective than others. I particularly focus on which therapies would be compatible with the Christian faith. Some modalities have a spiritual component, which is not compatible. I have also practiced herbalism with my family and friends for a number of years. I have experienced various kinds of physical manipulation for dislocated joints and other similar problems, and I have trained in the martial arts, which is relevant to some therapies. Martial arts are also therapeutic. I have also been writing a book on the uses of Sonoran Desert herbs, which already has 900 pages. It is a review of information in the literature, coupled with some of my personal experience. I have done the research for this book in eight languages. I also have done strength training and weightlifting. I am familiar with some technique and nutrition.

Education/Credentials
I studied the use of Sonoran Desert herbs with Peter "Bigfoot" Busnack. I studied midwifery with Norman Casserley, aka Mister Midwife. Three of my children were born at home. I have a second degree black belt in taekwondo and have also played judo and studied Kem Scrima Do.

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