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Thread: Supplements

  1. #1

    Supplements

    So due to some recent life changes, my schedule has gotten quite a bit more hectic. I'm definitely still adjusting and know things will improve, but even before these changes, there have been times where I've felt like I age a year with every month that passes. Just not feeling on my game mentally or physically... my workouts are suffering, I don't feel as present in my day to day interactions... that kind of stuff. Coffee helps, but I'm not a huge fan of caffeine in the 1st place and definitely don't like the idea of being dependent upon that 1st cup to get my day moving (for some reason, the meds I take that I require to be productive seem different). Anyway, I've been doing some research and was considering starting to take a Ginko Biloba and Horny Goat Weed/Maca supplement. I've read that both (especially when stacked together) *may* help with concentration, engagement, strength, stamina, etc. I'm not going to lie and pretend that I'm not also slightly interested in the potential sexual benefits too, but that is not my main concern.

    I know most of Western medicine says that all of those claims are not even remotely supported by any convincing data and taking either or both, while relatively safe, is likely to serve you with nothing more than the potential negative side-effects. BUT I'm also aware that both of these have been is use in Eastern medicine for a LONG time now. I don't know enough of the science either way to totally buy in to one o the other, but I do think this might be one of those times that an alternative path might be worth trying.

    I'm wondering if anyone has any insight to share either from a pharmacological stance or from personal experience? Is there any truth/validity to the 2 of them acting synergistically? Any experiences (positive or negative) to share? Any alternate suggestions?

    Thanks!

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    *** c4/c5 incomplete *** Injured in Summer 2003 ***
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  2. #2
    Herbal remedies have been used for centuries, but there's been very little funding of studies that would prove or disprove medical claims for them. If you want to experiment with such remedies, I urge you not to do it on your own - go to a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, naturopath or herbalist who has wide experience with such substances. Herbs can be dangerous if used incorrectly, compounded and/or combined improperly, or taken in the wrong dosages. They are not regulated by an overseeing agency like the FDA, so be sure to find a practitioner with an established track record and good references.
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Bonnette View Post
    Herbal remedies have been used for centuries, but there's been very little funding of studies that would prove or disprove medical claims for them. If you want to experiment with such remedies, I urge you not to do it on your own - go to a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, naturopath or herbalist who has wide experience with such substances. Herbs can be dangerous if used incorrectly, compounded and/or combined improperly, or taken in the wrong dosages. They are not regulated by an overseeing agency like the FDA, so be sure to find a practitioner with an established track record and good references.
    Thanks Bonnette - I'll look into that for sure. There seem to be some pretty shady sources on the internet to buy this stuff with bad reviews for everything from pills falling apart in the bottle within a day of opening to having horrendous side-effects and suspicion that the herbs dispensed were not what was ordered. Going through someone who practices in the field is probably smart.

    *************************************************************
    *** c4/c5 incomplete *** Injured in Summer 2003 ***
    *************************************************************

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by daveh0 View Post
    There seem to be some pretty shady sources on the internet to buy this stuff with bad reviews for everything from pills falling apart in the bottle within a day of opening to having horrendous side-effects and suspicion that the herbs dispensed were not what was ordered. Going through someone who practices in the field is probably smart.
    Yes, better safe than sorry. Some herbal remedies are contaminated with industrial chemicals, in addition to pesticides. There is no standardized dose for many herbal remedies, and even when there is, there's no guarantee that pills or tinctures actually contain the amount stated on the label - a remedy could contain so little of an herb that you might as well take a placebo, or so much that the treatment essentially becomes a poison. And, as you say, the label might not even match up with what's in the bottle. At least an experienced practitioner will have discovered sources that he or she trusts to deliver a reliable product line.
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

  5. #5
    I would second what Bonnette suggested. I am not a disbeliever in alternative medicine but at the same time, I can not say that I have much experience in it. I would also suggest that you take a look at how well you are sleeping. Sleep apnea may produce some of the same symptoms. You might also want to try meditation and imagery. Both seem to help some people and it may be worth a try.
    I know this is rambling but I wanted to get my thoughts down.

    ckf
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    I would second what Bonnette suggested. I am not a disbeliever in alternative medicine but at the same time, I can not say that I have much experience in it. I would also suggest that you take a look at how well you are sleeping. Sleep apnea may produce some of the same symptoms. You might also want to try meditation and imagery. Both seem to help some people and it may be worth a try.
    I know this is rambling but I wanted to get my thoughts down.

    ckf
    Rambling encouraged/appreciated. I'm a fluent rambler =) Thanks for the input. Does sleep apnea just come out of nowhere or is it one of those things that I may have had for a while an it's now getting worse with age or whatever? This lagging has not always been the case... or really anything close to it. I'm not second-guessing anything you said... just curious.

    *************************************************************
    *** c4/c5 incomplete *** Injured in Summer 2003 ***
    *************************************************************

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Bonnette View Post
    Yes, better safe than sorry. Some herbal remedies are contaminated with industrial chemicals, in addition to pesticides. There is no standardized dose for many herbal remedies, and even when there is, there's no guarantee that pills or tinctures actually contain the amount stated on the label - a remedy could contain so little of an herb that you might as well take a placebo, or so much that the treatment essentially becomes a poison. And, as you say, the label might not even match up with what's in the bottle. At least an experienced practitioner will have discovered sources that he or she trusts to deliver a reliable product line.
    Makes more and more sense by the minute. Thanks again for the input!!

    *************************************************************
    *** c4/c5 incomplete *** Injured in Summer 2003 ***
    *************************************************************

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by daveh0 View Post
    Makes more and more sense by the minute. Thanks again for the input!!
    You're very welcome! Best wishes to you, whatever you decide.
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

  9. #9
    Sleep apnea comes on gradually - with it worsening over time. It is certainly related to age and other factors besides spinal cord dysfunction. But the more of the factors that you have, the more likely to have the problem.

    If you change other things and still don't get better, I would certainly look into this. See what your primary says.

    ckf
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Loss of energy and concentration can come for many reasons. A well-trained and talented Acupuncturist will often be very well-informed on possible herbal remedies, but first they investigate to diagnose the reasons for one's lack of energy.

    Have you spoken to your doctor and had a complete metabolic test run? Start with a regular medical check-up.

    What else has changed in your life since you last felt your energy and concentration were good?

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