Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Toothpaste and Snoring

My life changed six months ago. John had been working on toothpaste formulations and gave me a sample to try. That night, my husband David and I both used it. I woke up the next morning completely refreshed, and I quickly checked to make sure that David was still breathing. You see, for years, David has jarred the house with bone-rattling snoring. I am sure you think that you have heard snoring before, but his truly would shake the rafters and wake the house. The sounds would hit a crescendo around 3 to 4 a.m. and I was never able to sleep much after this, so you can understand my concern when there was no noise. At first, I hesitated to believe that toothpaste could make that much difference. The next night, I made David try his regular toothpaste, and once again, he roared.

John and I discussed the potential culprit in the regular paste. Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) is an inexpensive and very effective foaming agent found in most toothpaste formulations. I then began a collection of SLS-free toothpaste. Most were unpleasant, but David no longer snored. We had found the enemy. SLS allergy has been reported in the literature, but I could find little information on an association with snoring. For David, his allergy was severe enough to cause some kind of mucosal swelling that interfered with his breathing. By simply switching to SLS-free toothpaste, the topical exposure to SLS ended and he was able to breathe at night, resulting in a snore-free sleep. Both of us are now well rested!

We began to question the other ingredients in toothpaste, especially as it is something used twice daily at minimum. Toothpaste usually has silica, aluminum or calcium as the base and this is often sourced from China. This was also a cause for concern. John continued to pursue his toothpaste formulation, and I continued to taste test the terrible options that were already available on the market. After much research, the new toothpaste formulation is complete. We use xylitol (Non-GMO) in a concentration high enough to promote dental health. We were able to find a pure calcium base that was actually mined in the United States which we flavored with natural peppermint oil, menthol and tea tree oil. The result is an elegant and tasty all natural toothpaste which passes the David test…no snoring!

While I realize that this toothpaste may not produce the same dramatic results for everyone that I have enjoyed, it is certainly worth trying when dealing with a snoring family member. Having toothpaste with a very clean chemical profile and all natural ingredients helps us all sleep better! The toothpaste will be marketed under the Local Economy label and can be purchased at the pharmacy.

And to say my life changed is no exaggeration….

Healthy living (and a good night of rest) with John Hollis Pharmacy!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Our New Medicinal Teas

To continue our support for women’s healthcare, John Hollis Laboratories is developing a series of medicinal teas to help in promoting optimal health. All of our teas are from organic sources, and are free trade certified sourced whenever possible. Please note that our teas contain all active ingredients with no "fillers."

The first in the series is our PMS Serenity Tea which contains our proprietary formula of:

Vitex (Chaste Berries) – approved by German Commission E to support healthy and regular menstrual cycles

Black Cohosh - approved by German Commission E for premenstrual discomfort and pain

Dandelion – helps balance menstrual cycle, natural diuretic*

Hibiscus – provides high levels of antioxidants**

Chamomile – naturally calming^

One heaping spoonful steeped in 8 ounces of hot water for 3 to 5 minutes is a sufficient amount. This can be enjoyed throughout the day; however, we suggest the last cup in early evening.

We also have our Menopausal Wisdom Tea which contains:

Vitex (Chaste Berries) – Used in conjunction with Black Cohosh and Dong Quai to support the menopausal transition#

Dong Quai Root- Chinese herb traditionally used to help with menopausal symptoms#

Black Cohosh – used for healthy menopause#

Wild Yam – used in China for women’s health support

Dandelion – helps cleanse the system*

Hibiscus – provides high levels of antioxidants**

Chamomile – naturally calming and renowned for its health benefits^

Steep one heaping spoonful in 8 ounces of boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes for maximum benefit. We suggest enjoying a cup early in the evening to prevent the natural diuretic effects of the tea from disturbing sleep.

Caution: These are not for use in our pregnant or lactating patients.
*Clare BA, Conroy RS, Spelman K. The diuretic effect in human subjects of an extract of Taraxacum officinale folium over a single day. J Altern Complement Med.2009 Aug;15(8):929-34.

**Mohamed R, Fernandez J, Penada M, Aguilar M. Roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) seed oil is a rich source of gamma-tocopherol. J Food Sci 2007;72:S207-11

^Amsterdam JD, Li Y, Soeller I, et a. A randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trial of oral Matricaria recutita (chamomile) extract therapy for generalized anxiety disorder. J Clin Psychopharmacol.2009;29(4):378-382.

#Hudson TS, Standish L, Breed C, and et al. Clinical and endocrinological effects of a menopausal botanical formula. J Naturopathic Med 1998;7:73-77