Blood is quite literally the river of life. Your vitality is greatly influenced by your blood purity and whether or not your organs and tissues can get a constant sufficient supply of blood. Blood is composed of plasma, red and white blood cells and platelets with its major role to regulate the body’s systems and maintain homeostasis. Blood keeps you alive by transporting nutrients and oxygen to your cells while also removing metabolic waste products away from those same cells. In addition to the need of clean blood, another need are clean channels that blood flows through. Similar to your home, it is not only important to have pure water to drink, but also to have clean, strong pipes to transport the water.
Blood makes up around 7-8% of the weight of a human body with pregnant women having approximately 50% more blood by week 20 than they did at time of conception. The tiny vessels that transport blood throughout the body would cover a distance of roughly 100,000 miles and one red blood cell can complete a circuit around your entire body in 30 seconds. And did you know that in times of emergency coconut water can actually be used as a substitute for blood plasma? (1) Crazy! (I still prefer drinking my coconut water).
Dr. Christopher’s Blood Stream Formula includes various herbs with the intent to clean and purify, help remove cholesterol, kill infection and to strengthen the veins and artery walls. It is the last herbal formula included on the Extended Herbal Cleanse. This herbal formula includes the organic and wildcrafted herbs of red clover blossoms, chaparral, licorice root, poke root, peach leaves, Oregon grape root, stillingia, prickly ash bark, burdock root and buckthorn bark.
Red Clover Blossoms
Red Clover is unusually high in phytoestrogens, particularly isoflavones, making it a great herb for women going through menopause or while on their period. But this is not why red clover is in the blood stream formula. Red Clover also has shown the ability to lower LDL cholesterol levels while raising HDL cholesterol levels, improve blood circulation and maintain flexibility in arterial walls. Red Clover’s alterative properties help in removing metabolic waste products (blood cleanser) and is why it is often used to treat skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.
Chaparral is a desert shrub found growing mostly in Mexico and the southwestern United States. Some refer to the plant as greasewood due to its unique tar-like fragrance. Native Americans would make a tea out of the herb to treat a number of ailments. Chaparral contains powerful antioxidants and strong antifungal and antimicrobial properties. It has been used for centuries as a blood purifier and heavy metal detoxifier. It is also a good expectorant, helping to alleviate respiratory difficulties.
Licorice Root is obtained from the small shrubs grown typically in Europe and south west Asia. Similar to Red Clover, Licorice Root contains various isoflavones (powerful antioxidants) that help protect LDL cholesterol from being oxidized, thus reducing plaque formation in arteries. Licorice is also a good blood cleanser. Surprisingly, Licorice Root is a very effective anti-depressant and can often be used as an alternative to St. John’s Wart. Licorice is mostly known for its demulcent, pectoral and emollient properties and is a great digestive soother and anti-inflammatory. We love taking licorice and slippery elm together when we feel our digestive system/bowels could use some soothing.
Poke root is a powerful cleansing herb, especially used to clear and move congested lymph. Many will find Poke Root as a great headache remedy and the root is also believed to strongly support the reproductive organs. It has been used to help treat mastitis and even cancer of the breast. Too much of the herb can cause an emetic or purgative effect, so this is one herb that really should be taken in small quantities.
When picking fruit from trees you usually don’t give much thought to the leaves; this is one fruit tree though you might want to gather some leaves as well. Peach Leaf is good depurative, helping the body to detoxify and supports the elimination channels of the body. Peach leaf can also act as a demulcent, mild laxative, sedative, diuretic and expectorant.
Oregon Grape Root
Oregon Grape Root is most renowned for its ability to stimulate the liver and increase bile flow, but also possesses powerful blood cleansing properties as well. Oregon grape root, much like Golden Seal, contains berberine and therefor exhibits antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiviral and antiseptic characteristics while simultaneously boosting the immune system. If you ever run out of Golden Seal or can’t afford the high price tag, Oregon Grape Root is an excellent alternative.
Stillingia, also known as Queen’s Root, is another good alterative herb and similar to Poke Root, is great at clearing and moving congested lymph. It is an exceptional depurative herb, helping the body to detoxify and cleanse the blood. Stillingia also possesses laxative, expectorant and diaphoretic qualities. As a depurative, Stillingia works great when combined with other depurative herbs to clear up skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis.
Prickly Ash Bark
If any of you suffer from Raynaud’s disease, like myself, this is one herb you won’t want to overlook. Prickly Ash Bark is great at improving blood circulation and would work great along with other stimulatory herbs like cayenne, ginger and garlic. Prickly Ash finds itself in the Blood Stream Formula as blood circulation is critical to detoxification. Prickly Ash also has diaphoretic and antibacterial properties. Native Americans used to chew the bark to help relieve toothaches.
Burdock Root is renowned as a liver tonic and also helps to clean and build the blood. Like the other herbs in the formula, Burdock is a great depurative, assisting the body in eliminating toxins and waste. Burdock also possesses diuretic properties, supporting the kidneys in waste elimination. Interestingly, this medicinal herb is actually often eaten as food in many cultures and is rich in various vitamins and minerals. Burdock root contains reltively high amounts of fiber, vitamin B6 and the minerals iron, magnesium and manganese.
Cascara Sagrada Bark (Rhamnus Purshianus)
It isn’t a surprise why this herb with laxative effects was given the name Cascara Sagrada by Spanish conquerors, or Sacred Bark in English. If one day goes by and I don’t have at least one elimination, I can develop a pretty sour mood indeed. For those who have experienced days of constipation (unfortunately, I am a member of this group), a good bowel movement is like a gift from God, relieving tension, pressure, irritation, frustration, anxiety and even depression. The active constituents in Cascara Sagrada are anthraquinone derivatives and their action is to stimulate peristalsis. The good thing about Cascara Sagrada, when taken as a whole herb as opposed to a tea or a decoction, is that the herb not only stimulates peristalsis, but also heals and strengthens the colon muscles. Proper elimination is key when detoxifying, and Cascara Sagrada helps support the digestive elimination channel.
Buckthorn Bark (Rhamnus Frangula)
Very similar to its cousin, Cascara Sagrada, Frangula bark is also a laxative. Frangula bark is more gentle and slower acting than Cascara Sagrada, making it a great herb for those suffering from chronic constipation, but perhaps not strong enough for those with acute constipation. Frangula bark will help re-educate the bowels to function properly. The bark needs to be aged (dried) for one to two years as fresh Frangula bark acts as an irritating poison on the intestines. Again, Dr. Christopher wants to make sure all elimination channels are working properly when the blood is being cleaned and purified.
Sarsaparilla Root is native to Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. It has been used medicinally for millennia. Sarsaparilla Root is a great depurative, promoting detoxification and blood purification through its alterative, diaphoretic and sudorific properties.
For more information on the Extended Herbal Cleanse, click here!