Glossary: Page 2 I-Z

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Ichthyosis: A condition characterized by a scaliness on the outer layer of skin.
Idiopathic: Term used by the medical profession to describe a condition or disease whose causes they do not know.
Immune: Protected against disease.
Immune Globulin: A protein that functions as an antibody in the body’s immune response.  Immune globulins are manufactured by certain white blood cells and found in body fluids and on mucous membranes.
Immune System: A complex system that depends on the interaction of many different organs, cells and proteins.  Its chief function is to identify and eliminate foreign substances such as harmful bacteria that have invaded the body.  The liver, spleen, thymus, bone marrow, and lymphatic system all play vital roles in the proper functioning of the immune system.
Immunity: The condition of being able to resist and overcome disease or infection.
Immunodeficiency: A defect in the functioning of the immune system.  It can be inherited or acquired, reversible or permanent.  Immunodeficiency renders the body more susceptible to illness of every type, especially infectious diseases.
Immunology: The branch of medical science that deals with the functioning of the immune system.
Immunotherapy: Treatment of disease by using techniques to stimulate or strengthen the immune system.
Incubation period: The period of time between exposure to an infectious disease and the appearance of symptoms, during which the infection is developing.
Indian Kino:  A plant from India that has the herbal property of repairing the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin.
Infection:  Invasion of the body tissues by disease-causing organisms such as viruses, protozoa, fungi or bacteria.
Infectious: Liable to be transmitted by infection.
Infestation: An invasion of the body by parasites such as insects, worms or protozoa.
Inflammation: A reaction to illness or injury characterized by swelling, warmth or redness.  It is the changes that occur in living tissues when invaded by germs; swelling, pain, heat.
Infusion: A drink made by steeping plants or plant extracts in hot water for 10 to 20 minutes, making it stronger than tea.
Inguinal:  Pertaining to the groin.
Inorganic:  Something that does not come from a living thing.
Inositol: A substance closely related to the B-vitamins that you need to make neurotransmitters and cell membranes.  It is a nutrient found in Brewer’s yeast, lecithin and dark green leafy vegetables.  It is an important nutrient involved in hair growth.  It is used by the body as a building block to make other important molecules that are used in the digestion of fat and movement of other nutrients to other places in the body.
Inositol hexaniacinate (IHN): A form of niacin that also contains inositol.
Insoluble fiber: Dietary fiber that is mostly cellulose from the cell walls of plants such as whole grains, wheat, corn, nuts and seeds, vegetables, some fruit, and the skins of some fruits and skin of potato. Insoluble fiber absorbs water. They are responsible for regulating bowel movement.  They do not dissolve in water.
Insomnia: An inability to fall asleep or stay asleep.
Insulin: The hormone made and secreted by the pancreas. It controls the amount of sugar in the blood.  It is needed to carry glucose (sugar) into the cells so that the cell can create energy. It thus regulates the metabolism of glucose (sugar) in the body. It also helps control the fat in your body.
Insulin Resistance:  Reduced sensitivity to insulin.  When a person continues to eat too many foods that contain carbohydrates, there is a continual production of insulin.  Over time, with an excess amount of insulin, the cells become less sensitive to it.  This causes the body to have to produce even more insulin to handle the amount of sugar in the blood produced by eating too many carbohydrates.   The larger amount of insulin in the body causes the calls to become even more insensitive to the insulin.  It continues like this getting worse and worse, until the flow of sugar is stopped, and the body is allowed to become sensitive to insulin again.
Interaction: A phenomenon that occurs when two or more substances affect one another’s activity or combine to create a different effect than any of them would have on its own.  Any substance introduced into the body can potentially interact with another substance or substances already present.  Drugs, foods, herbs, minerals and vitamins can all interact with one another.
Interferon: A protein produced by the cells in response to viral infection that prevents viral reproduction and is capable of protecting uninfected cells from viral infection. There are different types of interferon, designated alpha, beta and gamma.
International Unit: The amount of a hormone or vitamins required to produce a specific response that is agreed upon by international drug organizations.  The criteria are usually issued over a type of substance such as a type of vitamins, or a type of drug.   Every type of drug, vitamin or nutrient has different criteria that their International Unit is based on.
Interuterine device (IUD): a device made of copper, plastic or other material that, inserted in the uterus, prevents conception (in most cases).
Intestine:  A long tube through which food travels from the stomach and out of the body while it is being digested.
Intestinal flora: The “friendly” bacteria present in the intestines that are essential for the digestion and metabolism of certain nutrients.
Intolerance: Nutritionally, the inability to digest a particular food, usually due to lack of deficiency of certain nutrients.

Intrauterine device (IUD): a device made of copper, plastic or other material that, inserted in the uterus, prevents conception (in most cases).

Intravenous: Into or connected to a vein.
Intravenous (IV) infusion: The use of a needle inserted in a vein to assist in fluid replacement or the giving of medication.
Intrinsic factor: A special substance secreted by your stomach to allow you to absorb cobalamin from you food. Cobalamin is Vitamin B12.

Iodine: An essential trace mineral needed to make thyroid hormones. A mineral found in seafood, salt that has had this mineral added to it, eggs and some cheese.  The purpose of iodine in the body is to produce thyroid hormone. Without iodine this hormone could not which would cause great harm to the body.
Iron: An essential trace mineral needed to make hemoglobin. A mineral found in meats, eggs, some seafood and green leafy vegetables. Iron is used by the body to make healthy blood cells.  It is also very important to the immune system.
Irregularity: See constipation.
Ischemia: The condition of being starved for blood.  Ischemia affecting the heart or brain can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Isoflavones: Hormone-like substances found in soybeans.
Isolated chemical USP vitamins and minerals:  The chemically separated form of a vitamin or mineral in a manmade form that are no longer part of a natural food but are a pure chemical form that is not recognized by the body.
Isomalt – A type of sugar alcohol that is used as a natural sugar substitute.  It can cause diarrhea when it is eaten in large amounts.  It is made from beets.
IU: International Unit. A measure of potency based on an accepted. international standard. Dosages of vitamin A and E supplements, among others, are usually measured in international units. Because this measurement of potency, not weight or volume, the number of milligrams in an international unit varies, depending on the substance being measured.
IUD: See Intrauterine device.


Jaundice: Increase in bile pigment in blood, causing yellow tinge to skin, membranes, and eyes; can be caused by disease of liver, gallbladder, bile system, or blood.
Jet lag: Fatigue and insomnia caused by traveling rapidly through several time zones.
Junk Food:  any food-like substance that does not fit the definition of the word “food”. Junk foods do not nourish the body; they cause harm to the body.  Junk foods contain refined grains, sugar and/or chemicals.  Refining foods will strip out the vitamins and minerals.  The sugar is concentrated and creates a chemical effect on the body similar to a drug. Junk foods also contain artificial color, flavor, which gives texture and taste. Many of these artificial substances have side-effects.  There are a total of at least 22 different chemicals in junk foods which enhance the flavor making them taste better than they really are by tricking your taste buds to sense in a certain way.  These chemical are highly addictive and deplete nutrients from the body. They are void of nutrients.  It is difficult to eat small amounts as the brain never feels satisfied.


Ketone:  The natural waste that is created when a body burns fat for energy. They can be used by the brain and heart for energy.
kg:  Abbreviation for kilogram.
Kidney:  A small organ in the body that takes away waste matter from the blood to produce urine.  Most people have two of them.
Kidney Stone:  A small hard mass that forms in the kidney.  The mass is made of minerals contained in the urine.  See Kidney Stones
Kilogram:  A measurement of the amount of physical matter in something that equals 1000 grams.  A thousand paperclips would be about 1 kilogram.

Kreb’s Cycle: The body’s main way of releasing energy stored in chemical bonds, making that energy available for the body’s energy needs. Carbohydrates are the main fuel, but fats and proteins may also be used.  Also called tricarboxylic acid cycle, or citric acid cycle.


Lactase: An enzyme that converts lactose into glucose and glactose.  It is necessary for the digestion of milk and milk products.
Lactating: Producing milk.
Lactation: Secretion of milk by breasts.
Lactic acid: An acid that is produced by the muscles during exercise. When the muscles use glucose for energy the waste is lactic acid.  It is removed from the area as soon as the muscles relax.  It is not dangerous but is the cause behind the burning sensation you get when lifting heavy weights many times. It is an acid that results from anaerobic glucose metabolism.  It is present in certain foods, including certain fruits and sour milk (when milk becomes sour, this means that some of the lactose, or milk sugar, it contained has been converted into lactic acid).  Lactic acid is also produced in the muscles during anaerobic exercise. It is the buildup of lactic acid that causes muscle fatigue during strenuous activity.  Synthetic lactic acid is used in food products as a flavoring and preservative.
Lactobacilli:  Any of a number of species of bacteria that are capable of transforming lactose (milk sugar) into lactic acid through fermentation.  Lactobacilli are naturally present in the colon, and are sometimes referred to as “friendly” bacteria because they aid in digestion and fight certain disease-causing microorganisms.  The two species of lactobacilli most commonly available in supplement form are L. acidophilus and L. bifudus.  It is the kind of nutritional yeast which is used to make bread or yogurt.
Lactose: The official name for the sugar of milk.
Laser: Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.  An instrument that focuses highly amplified light waves.  Lasers are used in surgical procedures, especially eye surgery.
Laxative: A substance that stimulates evacuation of the bowels.
LDL: An abbreviation that stands for a type of thing in the body that is made out of protein and fat molecules and has a specific job in the body.  It is less dense than other of its kind because it is made mostly out of fat.  Its job is to carry cholesterol to the arteries so that cholesterol can be given to the cells to use as energy.  When there is a large amount of LDL in the blood sometimes the cholesterol is left in the artery and becomes plaque.
LDL Cholesterol:  Cholesterol that is connected to an LDL.  There is a chance of it being left in the artery to become plaque.  For this reason is considered “bad” cholesterol.
Lean Body Mass:  the total mass of a person’s body without counting the fat in his body.
Lecithin:  All living cell membranes are largely composed of lecithin. It is a nutritional substance containing fatty acids, glycerol, a phosphate group and choline. Its health value depends on its content of essential fatty acids and choline. Soybeans are the usual source of lecithin containing both essential fatty acids. Lecithin is part of the structure of membranes of cells and organelles. Organelles are the organs in a cell which carry our various kinds of biochemical functions. These include the mitochondria, lysosomes, vesicles, Golgi, nucleus and nucleolus. A natural substance that can be found in many places such as egg yolk that helps break down fat so it can be absorbed by the body.
Lesion:  A wound or sore.
Leukemia: Cancer of the blood-producing tissues, especially the bone marrow and lymph nodes, resulting in an overabundance of white blood cells. It can be either acute (most common in children) or chronic (most common in adults).  It is similar in certain respects to Hodgkin’s disease.
Limbic system: A group of deep brain structures that, among other things, transmit the perception of pain to the brain and generate an emotional reaction to it.
Linoleic acid: An essential fatty acid found in many plants and fish. See article Essential Fatty Acids (EFA)
Linolenic acid: An essential fatty acid found in many seeds, including corn. It is indispensable for life, and must be obtained from foods, thus essential.
Lipid: A substance such as a fat or oil that is an important part of living cells.  The chemists name for fats, oils, cholesterol, and other fatty substances. They are substances found in nature that are soluble in the same organic solvents as fats and oils are.  Important nutritional lipids include choline, gamma-linolenic acid, inositol, lecithin and linoleic acid.
Lipofuscin: Age pigment in cells.
Lipoic acid: A vitamin-like substance you need to make energy in your mitochrondria. It’s also a powerful antioxidant.
Lipoprotein: A thing in the body that is made up of proteins and fats that usually have a specific task in the body such as carrying cholesterol to different parts of the body or carrying other nutrients in the body to places they are supposed to go.  Fatty substances (fats, oils, cholesterol, carotene, vitamin E) carried in and envelope made of protein and phospholipid (lecithin like) materials. Specifically it refers to the transport vehicles for fats and cholesterol in the blood and lymph fluids. Lipoproteins carry lipids (fats) between our intestine, liver, and body cells.
Lipotropic: Any of a number of substances that help to prevent the accumulation of abnormal or excessive amounts of fat in the liver, control blood sugar levels, and enhance fat and carbohydrate metabolism.  Commonly used lipotropics include choline, inositol and methionine.
Liver:  The liver is a 3 pound organ located in the right upper part of your chest cavity. It functions as an organ and also functions as a gland (produces hormones).  It has over 500 functions. It functions in digestion and detoxification.  All the fat that is burned and released through the body has to travel through the liver. The liver makes a hormone involved in fat burning.
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL): Vehicles that transport fat and cholesterol via the bloodstream to the cells. An excess of these vehicles is said by medical dogma to be associated with cardiovascular disease, and thus called “bad” cholesterol. It is often called “bad” cholesterol because excess amounts in your blood can lead to health problems, including heart disease.
Lutein: Helps protect your eyes against free radicals. Lutein is found in dark-green leafy vegetables.
Lycopene: A carotene found in tomatoes. It’s a very powerful antioxidant.
Lymph: A clear fluid derived from blood plasma that circulates throughout the body, is collected from the tissues, and flows through the lymphatic vessels, eventually retur4ning to the blood circulation.  Its function is to nourish tissue cells and return waste matter to the bloodstream.
Lymph nodes: Organs located in the lymphatic vessels that act as filters, trapping and removing foreign material.  They also form lymphocytes, immune cells that develop the capacity to seek out and destroy specific foreign agents.
Lymphadenopathy:  Enlargement of a lymph node or nodes as a result of a presence of a foreign substance or disease.  This condition is often referred to as “swollen glands”.
Lymphocyte: A type of white blood cell found in lymph, blood, and other specialized tissues, such as bone marrow and tonsils.  There are several different categories of lymphocytes.  These cells are crucial components of the immune system.  They are responsible for antibody production and direct attacks against invading organisms.   One of these lymphocytes, a subtype of the T-lymphocyte is the primary cell infected and destroyed by HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
Lymphokine:  Any of a group of substances produced by the cells of the immune system when exposed to antigens.  They are not antibodies, but rather perform such functions as stimulating the production of additional lymphocytes and activating other immune cells.
Lymphoma: Cancer of the lymphatic tissues.
Lysine: An essential amino acid that may be helpful for treating herpes. 


Macrobiotics: A dietary approach adapted from Far Eastern philosophy whose basic purpose consists of balancing the yin and yang energies of food.  For the most part, the macrobiotic diet consists of whole grain cereals, millet, rice, soups and vegetables, with beans and supplementary foods depending on the individual and the condition.  Different conditions are considered either yin or yang, so the macrobiotic program must be adapted to each individual.
Macular Degeneration:  The gradual blurring of the center the field of vision which continues to get worse, eventually resulting in blindness.  It is usually considered to be associated with age.
Magnesium: A mineral you need for many body functions, including relaxing your muscles and digesting proteins.  A metal found in specific forms is a nutrient that has roles in turning glucose into energy, the actions of the muscles, and nerve signals.  It is vital to over 200 different chemical processes in the body.
Malabsorption: Nutritionally, a defect in the absorption of nutrients from the intestinal tract into the bloodstream.
Malignant:  Literally, “evil”.  Used to refer to cells or groups of cells that are cancerous and likely to spread.
Maltitol:  A sugar alcohol used as a sugar substitute.  It has 90% of the sweetness of table sugar.  It is made from starch.  It is well known for causing digestive trouble such as diarrhea if eaten in large amounts.
Mammography:  An x-ray examination of the breast.
Manganese: A trace mineral you need for many body functions, including blood clotting and digesting proteins.  A mineral found in grains, nuts and green vegetables that is necessary for turning fat into energy and building of many different types of tissue in the body.
Mangiferin:  One of the substances in Pitika Root.  It acts as an anti-oxidant and stops the body from digesting starch into sugar.
Mannitol:  A sweet white alcohol found in many plants that is used as a sweetener in foods.
MAO Inhibitors: Abbreviation for monoamine oxidase inhibitors; a group of antidepressants that promotes an elevation of levels of amine messengers in the emotional regions of the brain.
Marginal or subclinical deficiency: The early stages of a vitamin or mineral deficiency.
Mass:  The amount of matter in any solid object, liquid or gas.  This does not mean the same thing as weight.  On earth and object with a mass of 1 gram will have a mass of 1 gram on the moon.
Matrix:  A substance that other things are buried or contained in.  (The vitamin was absorbed into the plant tissue matrix.  You will find many different vitamins and minerals contained in the matrix of meat tissue.)
mcg:  Abbreviation for microgram.
Medical Food:  Material in the form of nutrients or food that is intended for the dietary management of a disease that has specific nutritional needs that cannot be met by normal diet alone.
Megablastic or macrocytic anemia: Anemia from cobalamin deficiency.
Megavitamin therapy: Treatment of illness with massive amounts of vitamins.
Melanoma: A malignant tumor originating from pigment cells in deep layers of the skin. The most dangerous type of skin cancer. It can quickly spread to other parts of your body.
Melatonin: A hormone made by your pineal gland. Melatonin regulates your sleep-wake cycle.
Membrane:  A very thin piece of material that covers or surrounds something.
Menadione: The synthetic form of Vitamin K. Also called Vitamin K3.
Menaquinone: The form of Vitamin K made in your intestines by friendly bacteria. Also called Vitamin K2.
Menopause: The cessation of the female monthly periods caused by a sharp decrease in the production of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone.  Menopause usually occurs between age 45 and 50, or following the removal of the female reproductive organs.
Metabolism: The chemical reactions inside your cells that create energy and make life possible.  This includes the production of cellular energy, the synthesis of important biological substances, and the degradation of various compounds.  All the chemical processes in your body, especially those that cause food to be used for energy and growth.  The rate at which the body turns food into energy and the speed that the chemical processes of the body occur.  (This nutrient plays a key role in specific areas of the body’s metabolism.  Your body will only burn fat if its metabolism is balanced. Joe went on a diet to speed up his metabolism.)
Metabolite: A substance produced as a result of a metabolic process.
Metabolize: To undergo change by physical and chemical processes. To process a material like food or nutrients in your body and turn that material into something that can be used for energy or growth.
Metformin: (Glucophage, Riomet, Fortamet, Glumetza, Diabex, Diaformin) A drug that is prescribed for Diabetes. The drug was made chemically to mimic the chemical properties of French Lilac, which has been known as an herb to reduce diabetic symptoms.  The medical field does not know how the drug works but by experiment it is shown to bring down blood sugar without bringing it too low. It has many side effects mostly dealing with the stomach and intestines, but affecting other parts of the body as well in various ways.
Methionine: An essential sulfur-containing amino acid.
Methylcobalamine (Methyl B12):  The form of Vitamin B12 that is used by the body.  The body has to convert any other form of Vitamin B12 into this form before it can be used.  The body uses what is called the Intrinsic Factor to bring about the change from B12 to Methyl B12 in the body.
mg:  Abbreviation for milligram.
Micellized:   Used to describe the breaking up of fat soluble vitamins into tiny droplets for improved absorption.
Microgram:  A measurement of weight equivalent to 1/1000 of a milligram, or 0.0000001 grams. 1000 micrograms equal a millagram, 1,000,000 micrograms equals a gram.
Micronutrients:  A substance required for normal growth and development but only in very small quantities in comparison to other nutrients.   Protein, fat and carbohydrates are macronutrients, vitamins and minerals are micronutrients.
Migraine: A very severe headache usually felt on just one side of your head. Other symptoms include nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, and cold hands and feet.   See Migraines
Milligram:  A measurement of weight equivalent to 1/1000 of a gram (a gram is equal to approximately 1/28 of an ounce). .001 grams.  1000 milligrams equal a gram. 2 grains of sand is about 1 milligram.
Mineral: Any of several basic elements, including metals. In the body, about 20 minerals are required for biochemical life functions.  Minerals are inorganic substances that are required by the body in small quantities.  Inorganic substances that come from the soil and water and are absorbed by plants or eaten by animals to remain healthy.
Mineral Salt:  A mineral made from two or more inorganic substances combined together that form a salt.
Minimum Daily Requirement (MDR): Also called Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA); for those essential nutrients for which and RDA has been set by government committees, it is the amount of each of these essential nutrients required daily to prevent the symptoms of deficiency in a normal, healthy person.  It is the bare minimum needed daily, less will cause deficiencies.
Mitochondria: Tiny, rod-shaped structures found in all your cells. They function as miniaturized power plants where glucose is converted to energy, with the help of oxygen and a group of enzymes. They are involved in protein synthesis and lipid metabolism.
Molecule: Two or more atoms held together by means of a pair of electrons shared between them.  The simplest unit of a chemical substance, usually a group of two or more atoms.
Molybdenum: An essential trace mineral important for making some enzymes and for normal growth and development.  A mineral found in dark green leafy vegetables, lima beans and sunflower seeds as well as others that assist the liver in processing iron.  It is a vital part of certain chemical processes in the body.
MRI: (Magnetic resonance imaging): A technique used in diagnosis that combines the use of radio waves and a strong magnetic field to produce detailed images of the internal structure of the body.
Mucilage: Soluble fiber found in beans, seeds, grains and nuts.
Mucous membranes:  Membranes that line the cavities and canals of the body that communicates with the air.   Examples include the membranes lining the inside of the mouth, nose, anus and vagina.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS): A serious disease that usually gets worse over time.  It occurs in the central nervous system or the brain.  It leads to loss of the lining around the nerves (myelin sheath) in the brain or spinal cord and causes muscle weakness, poor eyesight, slow speech and some inability to move.
Muscle Tone:  See Tone
Mutagen:  A substance that increases the rate of genetic change between cells when they divide.  It is usually used in reference to changes in genetic material that cause harm or are not good.   They can be created and put in food by heating food in a microwave.   See Microwave Cooking


NAC (N-acetyl cysteine): A form of the amino acid cysteine.
Narcotic: A central nervous system depressant which, in moderate doses, relieves pain and produces sleep; in large doses it can produce unconsciousness or even death; can be addicting.
Naringin: A falconoid found in citrus fruits.
Natural Life Processes:  The process that occurs in plants and animals that converts nutrients from the diet into energy or material that is directly usable by the body.
Naturopathy: A form of health care that uses diet, herbs, and other natural methods and substances to cure illness.  The goal is to produce a healthy body state without the use of drugs by stimulating innate defenses.
Nausea: Stomach discomfort with the feeling of a need to vomit.
Nephropathy:  A failure of the kidneys.
Neural tube defect (NTD): A birth defect that happens when the growing brain, spinal cord, and vertebrae (the bones of the spine) of an unborn baby don’t develop properly during the first month of pregnancy.
Neuron:  Nerve cell.
Neuropathy:  A type of nerve damage.  It is a condition where the lining around the nerves has been damaged and is not exposing the nerve.  The person will feel different uncomfortable sensations like: pain, numbness, heat, cold stringing, and pins and needles.  Symptoms include tingling or numbness, especially in the hands or feet, followed by gradual, progressive muscular weakness as the motor nerves can be damaged. See Neuropathy and Articles on the Causes
Neurotransmitter: A substance that transmits nerve signals from one nerve cell to another. A chemical the body makes to transport messages along your nerves and among your brain cells. The body makes a number of different neurotransmitters, including dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin.
Niacin: A B vitamin also known as Vitamin B3.
Niacinamide: A vitamin that has been made from niacin.  It acts in the body like niacin but doesn’t cause the body to have the flush or itching reactions associated with niacin.
Nicotinamide: Another name for niacin.
Nicotinic Acid: A colorless or yellowish liquid that is a strong acid.  It is often used in making explosives, fertilizers and rocket fuel.
Nitricum acidum:  Comes from nitric acid and reduces cravings for starches like breads and pasta.
Nitrites: Used as fixatives in cured meats; can combine with natural stomach and food chemicals to cause dangerous cancer-causing agents called nitrosamines.
Nonessential amino acid: One of the 11 amino acids you can get from your food and make in your body from the nine essential amino acids.
Nonheme iron: The iron found naturally in plant foods such as spinach and whole grains.
Noninsulin-dependent diabetes: The most common type of diabetes. It happens when your cells become resistant to insulin, a hormone made in your pancreas. Insulin is needed to carry glucose into your cells to be used to make energy. This form of diabetes usually begins in adults over age 40, and is most common after age 55.
Norepinephrine: A hormone produced by the adrenal medulla, similar to epinephrine, and used chiefly as a vasoconstrictor.
Nourish: Providing the body with nutrients (vitamins and minerals) that help grow and repair the body parts, tissues and fluids.
Nucleic acid: Any of a class of chemical compounds found in all viruses and plant and animal cells.  Ribonucleic acid (RNA) and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) contain the genetic instructions for every living cell, are two principal types.
Nutraceutical: A food- or nutrient-based product or supplement designed and/or used for a specific clinical and/or therapeutic purpose.
Nutrient: A substance that is needed by the body to maintain life and health.  A material that plants or animals need in order to live and grow.
Nux vomica:  Extract from a nut that discourages general overeating


Obesity: A symptoms of being unhealthy.  There can be different causes due to malfunctioning glands.
Occult blood test: A test that detects the presence of blood in bodily excretions such as stool, sputum, or urine.  It is most often used in screening for cancer.
Oil: A liquid fat.
Omega-3 fatty acids: A family of related fatty acids essential to human health, but lacking in most western diets. Another name for linolenic fatty acids, found in plants and cold water fish.   See article Essential Fatty Acids
Omega-6 fatty acids: A family of related fatty acids essential for human health. They are amply supplied in the Western diet. A balance of Omega-3 and Omega-6 leads to optimum health. Omega-6 is another name for linoleic fatty acids.
Omega 6:3 balance: The balance of Omega-6 to Omega-3 that leads to optimum health. Most Western diets are between 10 and 20 to 1 in favor of Omega 6, far too high in Omega 6, which encourages overproduction of postaglandins with negative effects on health. A therapeutic Omega-6:Omeaga 3 balance for Western diets is about 1:2.   See article Essential Fatty Acids
Oncologist: A cancer specialist.

Oncology: The medical specialty dealing with cancer.
OPCs: Oligomeric Proanthocyanidins, flavonoids found in many plants and red wine. OPC supplements are usually made from grape seeds or pine bark.
Opthalmia: Inflammation of eye.
Opthalmic: Pertaining to eyes.
Opthamology:   The area of medicine that deals with the eye and the things that can be wrong with the eye.
Optimum: Most effective. In nutrition, it is the daily dose of a nutrient or nutrient combination that results in the most effective biochemical and metabolic functioning of the organism.
Oral hypoglycemic agents:  Medications commonly given by medical doctors to forcibly lower a person’s blood sugar levels.
Organ:  A part of the body that performs a particular job.
Organelle: Literally, a little organ. In the cell, various kinds of biochemical “machinery’ that carry out different specialized cell functions. Mitochondria, lysosomes, vesicles, Golgi, nucleus, and nucleolus are organelles.
Organic: Made by a living thing.  Food or products raised or made without the use of any unnatural or man-made chemicals. A term used to describe foods that are grown without the use of synthetic chemicals, such as pesticides, herbicides and hormones.  Organic farming treats the soil so that the crops are grown naturally with a high content of nutrients.  Non-Organic farming treats the crop and not the soil supplying the crop with less nutrients.
Orthomolecular: The right molecule used for the right treatment; doctors who practice preventive medicine and use vitamin therapies are known as orthomolecular physicians. This treatment uses vitamins, minerals and other supplements to treat the underlying causes of illness. The word means of the right molecule. In nutrition it is the maintenance of health and the treatment of disease by varying the concentrations of substances normally present in the body (vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids, enzymes, hormones).
OSHA: Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Osteomalacia: Soft, weak bones in adults caused by a shortage of Vitamin D.
Osteopathy: A system of medicine based on the belief that the body is a vital mechanical organism whose structural and functional integrity are coordinated and interdependent, and that disturbances in the musculoskeletal system can therefore cause disorders elsewhere in the body.  Because of this philosophy, although osteopaths can prescribe drug and perform surgery, they are more likely to recommend physical therapy or musculoskeletal manipulation as the treatment of first choice.
Osteoporosis:  A disease that causes the bones to weaken and become easily broken.  A disorder in which minerals leach out of the bones, rendering them progressively more porous and fragile.  Bones break easily because they are thin, porous, and brittle; A condition characterized by porous (softening or increasingly brittle) bones.  Osteoporosis has several related causes, but too little calcium in the diet plays a big part in causing it.   Calcium needs magnesium to be used, so this is another part of it.
Oxalates: Organic chemicals found in certain foods, especially spinach, which can combine with calcium to form calcium oxalate, an insoluble chemical the body cannot use.
Oxidation: A chemical reaction in which oxygen reacts with another substance, resulting in a chemical transformation. Many oxidation reactions result in some type of deterioration or spoilage.
Oxidize: The addition of oxygen, subtraction of hydrogen, or addition of electrons to a substance often accomplished by a release of energy. |
Ovary:  Female organs in involved in reproduction.  They make estrogen and other hormones.  They are located a few inches to the left and right of the uterus which is in the lower part of the abdomen.


PABA: An abbreviation for Para-aminobenzoic acid; a member of the B-complex, it makes up part of the folic acid molecule.  An abbreviation for a substance that is used by bacteria in the intestine to create folic acid.  It is also useful as a nutrient itself for the creation of red blood cells and to improve the use of protein in the body.
Palliative: Treating only the symptoms of a disease, relieving pain and symptoms without providing a cure.
Palmirate: Water-soluble vitamin A.
Pancreas:  An organ in the body that produces hormones as well as different substances that help digest food so that the body can use the nutrients from the food.
Pantothenic acid: One of the B vitamins. Pantothenic acid is found in every food.  Vitamins B5.
Pap test: Microscopic examination of cells collected from the vagina and cervix to test for signs of cancer.
Parasite: Any animal or plant that lives inside or on the body of another animal or plant and obtains nourishment from it.
Paresthesia:  A sensation of tingling, pricking or numbness of a person’s skin.  These sensations may come and go or may be going on all the time depending on the cause.  This type of symptom is usually associated with neuropathy. Many drug companies will list this as a side effect of their drug instead of saying their drug causes neuropathy.
Partially hydrogenated: An oil in which some but not all double bonds have been destroyed by adding hydrogen to the fatty acid molecules under pressure and high temperatures in the presence of a nickel-aluminum catalyst. A semi-solid plastic fat results. Many chemical changes take place in the fatty acid molecules during this process.
Pectin: Soluble fiber fond in the skins and rinds of plant foods. It dissolves in liquid.  It is also used as a thickener for making jam.
Pellagra: A deficiency disease caused by a serious lack of niacin.
Peptic: Pertaining to the digestive tract.
Peptid: A small protein made from a very short chain of amino acids – usually only two or three.
Peripheral:  Referring to outer parts of the body such as the arms or feet.
Permeable:  Allowing liquids or particles to pass through.
Pernicious anemia: Anemia caused when your stomach stops making intrinsic factor and you stop being able to absorb cobalamin from your food.
Peroxide value (PV): a measure of the rancidity in oils.
pH: Potential of hydrogen.  A scale used to measure the relative acidity or alkalinity of substances. The scale runs from 0 to 14.  A pH of 7 is considered neutral; numbers below 7 denote increasing acidity and numbers above 7 denote increasing alkalinity. An abbreviation for a scale that measures different substances based on how they react to other chemicals.  It basically monitors the presence of two different types of molecules.   Once type could be called the “acid” type of molecule. The other would be called the “alkaline” type of molecule.  If there are more of the acid molecules or the acid molecules in a substance are stronger than the alkaline molecules then the substance is considered acid. If there are more of the alkaline molecules or the alkaline molecules are stronger than the acid molecules then the substance is considered alkaline. An acid steals certain atoms or molecules from a substance, which can make it unstable so it breaks down. A very strong alkaline material with a very high level on this scale will cause skin burns and break down materials in a way that to the human eye looks very much like what an acid does. What makes them opposite to each other is that they you take an acid molecule and an alkaline molecule and put them close to each other, they combine and neutralize each other. If you have an equal amount of acid and alkaline in a substance, the substance will be neutral and the acid or alkaline molecules will not react to other chemicals. An example of this is when you take baking soda (alkaline) and vinegar (acid) and combine them, they fizz (chemical reaction) and that you have left is a neutral and is no longer acid or alkaline. The scale ranges from 0 to 14.  7 is considered neutral. The lower a material is on the scale, the more acidic it is. The higher the number on the scale, the more alkaline it is.
Pharmaceutical:  Dealing with drugs or their production.
Pharyngitis:  Sore throat.
Phaseolus vulgaris:  The latin term for White Kidney Bean.
PhD:  (Ph.D.): abbreviation for “Doctor of Philosophy” the highest college or university degree that can be gotten in a subject.
Phenylalanine: An essential amino acid.
Phenylketonuria (PKU): An inherited disorder caused by a lack of an enzyme necessary to convert the amino acid phenylalanine into another amino acid, tyrosine, so that excesses can be eliminated from the body.  A buildup of excess phenylalanine in the blood can lead to neurological disturbances and mental retardation.
Phosphatide: See phospholipid.
Phosphatidyicholine (PC): A fatty substance made from choline that the body needs to make the walls of the cells.
Phospholipid: a class of fatty compounds found in membranes. Lecithin is the best-known example.
Phosphorus: The second most abundant mineral in your body, used to make your teeth and bones and for many metabolic processes.  An extract from phosphorus that fights chocolate cravings.   A vital nutrient in the body.  Teeth and bone contain phosphorus.   It is very abundant in nature and can be found in dairy products, meat, fish, eggs, grains and green leafy vegetables.  Many of the B vitamins can only be used by the body when phosphorus is available.  It is also used by the body to maintain the pH level in the body and is used in many different chemical reactions.
Photosensitivity: Sensitivity to light.
Phytochemical: Any one of many substances present in fruits and vegetables that have various health-promoting properties.   Some phytochemicals appear to protect against certain types of cancer.
Phytoestrogens: A hormone-like compounds found in plant foods, especially soybeans.
Phyto-insulin:  A substance that is produces in a plant that acts like insulin when taken into the body.
Phytonutrients: Substances that plants produce naturally to protect themselves against viruses, bacteria, fungi, predators (like bugs) and the sun’s harmful effects.  Phyto refers to the Greek word for plant.  There are more than 25,000 phytonutrients found in plant foods. Vitamins and minerals are required to keep us alive, but phytonutrients are not required, instead they give us additional health benefits.  They are anti-oxidants, but are much more.  An anti-oxidant is the shell around plants that protect the plant against the environment. (orange peel, banana peel, etc.)  They are filled with antioxidants.
Phylloquinone: A form of Vitamin K found in plant foods. Also called Vitamin K1.
Piles:  Another word for Hemorrhoid
Pineal gland: A small gland found inside the brain.
It produces melatonin and regulates your internal clock.
Pitka Root:  Large climbing plant found throughout forests in India. It contains many substances that are considered to help the diabetic condition.
Pituitary: A gland located at the base of the brain that secretes a number of different hormones. Pituitary hormones regulate growth and metabolism by coordinating the actions of other endocrine glands.
PKU (phenylketonuria): A hereditary disease caused by the lack of an enzyme needed to convert an essential amino acid (phenylalanine) into a form usable by the body; can cause mental retardation unless detected early.
Placebo: A pharmacologically inactive substance, primarily used in experiments to provide a basis for comparison with pharmacologically active substances.
Plaque:  An unwanted deposit of a certain substance on tissues, often with the potential to cause some type of health problem.  The buildup of the fatty deposits of cholesterol and other substances that build up inside your arteries and block them is the leading cause of cardiovascular disease.  Plaque deposits on the teeth can lead to gum disease.  Alzheimer’s disease is associated with the accumulation of characteristic plaques in brain tissue.  Substances that are built up on the surface of something such as a tooth, the inside wall of an artery or on the skin.
Plasma Glucose:  See Blood Sugar.
Plastic: Synthetic materials used for packaging; those used for oils may cause contact derivatives in sensitive individuals; contrary to marketing hype, they are neither biodegradable nor truly recyclable. As a result dark glass is preferable for oil packaging.
Platelet: Small, colorless disks in circulating blood, which aid in blood clotting. Platelets become more sticky (form clots easier) when we consume hard or hydrogenated fats, and less sticky (form clots less readily) when we consume Omega-3 fatty acids. Less stick platelets protect against heart attacks and strokes.
Polyethylene: A type of plastic used as packaging material for dry goods. Amber glass is preferable material for oils because of environmental concerns and unanswered health questions. Many plastics are toxic.
Polymerize: The process of forming complex or giant molecules by linking together many smaller units. Our body lacks the capacity to metabolize such molecules easily.
Polyunsaturated fats: Highly nonsaturated fats from vegetable sources; tend to lower blood cholesterol. The item includes both natural, health-enhancing as well as unnatural, health-destroying kinds.
Potassium: An electrolyte mineral needed to control your blood pressure and regulate your heartbeat.
Potent: (potency) very powerful, forceful or effective.
Poultice: A soft, moist mass of herbs, oils, medicine, etc., spread on a cloth and applied to the skin to relieve congestion or pain.
Pound:  A unit for measuring weight.  4 sticks of butter weighs about a pound.
Precancerous lesion: Abnormal tissue that is not malignant, but that maybe in the process of becoming so.
Precursor: A substance out of which another substance is made by chemical modification. This is a natural occurrence in the body – such as DHEA being the precursor of different steroids including estrogen.
Predigested protein: Protein that has been processed for fast assimilation and can go directly to the bloodstream.
Preformed Vitamin A: The vitamin A found in animal foods such as egg yolks. Your body can use preformed Vitamin A as soon as you eat it.
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS): A nutrition-related degenerative condition affecting women before the onset of the monthly period. Water retention, bloating, mood swings, and behavioral difficulties are often involved.
Preservative: Any of a large number of possible compounds that slow down chemical deterioration.
Prodrome:  Another word for Aura.
Progesterone: A female steroid hormone.
Prognosis: A forecast as to the likely course and/or outcome of a disorder or condition.
Proprietary:  Something used, made or sold by a person or company with an exclusive right to do so such as with a patent or trademark.
Prostaglandins: Hormone like substances your body makes from fatty acids. They control many activities in your body, in the regulation of cell activity. Over 30 prostaglandins are known. They influence the secretion of hormones and enzymes, and are important in regulating the inflammatory response, blood pressure, and blood clotting time.
Prostrate gland: A small male organ wrapped around the urethra. The prostate makes some of the fluids found in semen.
Protein: An organic substance made from hydrogen, oxygen, carbon and nitrogen. The body needs protein to live; most of your body is made of it. Proteins are made from strings of amino acids. Biological substances such as hormones and  enzymes are composed of protein.  The body makes the specific proteins it needs for growth, repair and other functions from protein in the diet. One of the many substances food such as meat, cheese, fish or eggs that is necessary for the body to grow and be strong.  They are essential to the structure of all living cells.  It makes up one of the 3 major classes of food.
Proteolytic enzymes: Enzymes that break down dietary proteins yet do not attack the proteins that make up the normal cells in your body.   Proteolytic enzymes may have value in fighting cancer and other diseases.   Cancer cells have a type of protein coating; theoretically, if this coating is destroyed by proteolytic enzymes, the body’s white blood cells would be able to attack the cancer cells, and destroy them.
Prothrombin: The most important clotting factor. The body needs Vitamin K to make it.
Provitamin: A vitamin precursor; a chemical substance necessary to produce a vitamin.
Pruritus: Itching.
Psoriasis: A skin condition characterized by silver-scaled red patches.  See Article Psoriasis
Psychosis: Type of insanity in which one loses almost complete touch with reality.
Psyllium powder: Soluble fiber made from the husks of plantago seeds and sold as a fiber supplement.
Pterocarpus marsuplum:  The latin term for Indian Kino.
Pterostilbene:  The active part of Indian Kino that helps repair the cells of the pancreas that make insulin.
Pteroylglutamic acid or pteroylmonoglutamate: Scientific name for folic acid.
PUFA: Polyunsaturated fatty acid.
Pulmonary: Pertaining to the lungs.
Purulent:  Containing or causing the production of pus.
Pycnogenol: A type of OPC made form pine bark. See also OPC.
Pyridoxal: Another name for pyridoxine.
Pyridoxine: A B vitamin also known as Vitamin B6.


Quercetin: An antioxidant flavonoid found in onions.
Qid: (in reference to dosage of pills or capsules). An abbreviation for 4 times a day. (If you are taking 2 capsules Qid. then you are taking 8 capsules a day)
Derivation:  A copy of the format for Bid, Q stands for Quad (Four)
Quinones: Brightly colored organic substances found in all living plants and animals.


Radiation: Energy that is emitted or transmitted in the form of waves. The term is often used to refer to radioactivity; however, radioactivity is a specific type of radiation that comes from the decay of unstable atoms.
Radiation therapy: A type of treatment, most often used for cancer, that involves the use of ionizing radiation, including Roentgen rays, radium, or other radioactive substances to destroy specific areas of tissue.  It is also called radiotheraphy.
RAST: (Radioallergosorbent test) A blood test that measures levels of specific antibodies produced by the body’s immune system, used to test for allergic reactions.
RDA: (Recommended Dietary Allowances) The amount of a vitamin or other nutrient that should be consumed daily in order to prevent nutritional deficiency. It does not take into account the increased requirement during pregnancy, breast-feeding, infancy, growth, adolescence, athletic activity, hard physical labor, healing, convalescence, aging, disease, stress, or individual biochemical differences.  It is established by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
React:  To have a chemical reaction.
Reaction: A change in the appearance, feeling or function of the body as a response to something.   It can be a material the body is allergic to, or a poison, or a substance that creates a known effect on the body like menthol that can have a cooling effect on the skin.   The process of chemicals, molecules or atoms changing or combining into different forms.
Rectum: The last portion of the digestive tract.
Red blood cell: A blood cell that contains a red pigment hemoglobin and transports oxygen and carbon monoxide in the bloodstream.
Refined: Refers to processed sugars, starches, and fats and oils. Essential substances are removed from foods, and thus refined substances rob the body of its stores of these essential nutrients, leading to deficiency diseases and degeneration. In terms of health, refined means ‘deficient’ and ‘nutrient-impoverished.
Remission: Lessening or reversal of the signs and symptoms of disease. This term is used mainly when referring to serious and/or chronic illnesses.
Renal: Pertaining to the kidneys.
Resveratrol: A flavonoid found in red wine. It may help lower cholesterol and prevent blood clots.
Retention:  (in regards to vitamins or nutrients) The act of the body storing a nutrient or material.  This does not mean the body will use it.  The body may decide to just keep it there or throw it away later as waste.
Retina: The thin, light-sensitive layer of cells at the back of your eye. The area of the back of the eye that receives light and translates the light into nerve signals.
Retinopathy: A condition involving damage to the blood vessels of the retina that can cause loss of sight or even total blindness.
Retinoid, retinol, retinaldehyde, or retinoic acid: Different names for the same thing: preformed Vitamin A.
Retrovirus: A type of virus that has RNA as its core nucleic acid and contains an enzyme called reverse transcriptase that permit the virus to copy its RNA into the DNA of infected cells, in effect taking over the cells’ genetic machinery.  Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that causes AIDS, is a retrovirus.  Retroviruses are also known to cause certain types of cancer in animals, and are suspected of causing forms of leukemia and lymphoma in humans.
Reverse:  (in reference to disease of bad condition) To turn around and cause a thing to move back toward a good or desirable condition.
Rhus toxicodendron:  Extract from green plants that combats milk and dairy cravings.
Rhinitis: Inflammation of the lining of the nose.
Riboflavin – See Vitamin B2
Ribonucleic acid (RNA): See RNA
Rickets: Crippling bone deformities in children caused by a shortage of Vitamin D.
RNA: (Ribonucleic acid) A complex protein which carried coded genetic messages from the DNA in the cell nucleus to our cells where the messages are translated to synthesize proteins.
Rose hips: A rich source of vitamin C; the nodule underneath the bud of a rose called a hip, in which the plant produces the vitamin C we extract.
Rupture:  To burst, break or tear.
Rutin: A substance extracted from buckwheat; part of the C-complex. It is a flavonoid found in citrus fruits, buckwheat, berries and red wine. It’s helpful for improving circulation in small blood vessels.


Saccharin:  A type of sugar that reduces sugar cravings.
Salacia reticulate:  Latin term for Pitka root.
Salmonella:  A type of bacteria that can cause food poisoning.
Salt:   A white crystal used in food to add flavor.  Any crystal that is formed by combining an acid and an alkaline material.
SAM (S-adenosylmethionine): A form of the amino acid methionine.
Saturated fatty acids: Usually solid at room temperature; higher proportions found in foods from animals sources; tend to raise blood cholesterol levels. They are not good for the body. They are called saturated because every possible position on the carbon atoms in its structure is taken up by hydrogen by having a hydrogen atom attached to it. Saturated meaning unable to hold or contain more; full.
Saturation: With regard to fats, the term “saturation” refers to the chemical structure of the fatty acid molecule, specifically the number of hydrogen atoms present.  Fat molecules that cannot incorporate any additional hydrogen atoms are said to be saturated; those that could incorporate one additional hydrogen atom are referred to as monounsaturated; and those that could incorporate two or more additional hydrogen atoms are referred to as polyunsaturated.
Scratch test: A procedure in which a small amount of a suspected allergen is applied to a lightly scratched area of skin to test for an allergic reaction.
Scurvy: A deficiency disease caused by prolonged lack of Vitamin C in the diet.
Sebum: The oily secretion produced by glands in the skin.
Secondary infection: An infection that develops after and is made possible by the presence or effect of a previous infection, inflammation, or other condition, but that is not necessarily directly caused by it.
Seizure: A sudden, brief episode characterized by changes in consciousness, perception, muscular motion, and/or behavior.  A convulsion is a type of seizure.
Selenium: An essential trace mineral needed to make glutathione and to help Vitamin E work more effectively.  A mineral that is needed in small amounts by the body for many chemical processes.  It plays a role in the immune system and preventing damage to the cells by toxins in the body.  It works together with Vitamin E to do many of its functions. 
: A substance that absorbs ions and prevents changes that would affect flavor, texture, and color of food; used for water softening.

Serotonin: A neurotransmitter found principally in the brain that is considered essential for relaxation, sleep, and concentration.   See also neurotransmitter.
Serum: The fluid portion of the blood.
Side Effect:  (In medicine) An unwanted, harmful or uncomfortable effect that is created by a drug or other type of procedure or action on the body such as chemotherapy or surgery.
Silicon:  A mineral found in whole grain, alfalfa, green leafy vegetables and roots.  It strengthens the link between certain tissues of the body giving them more strength and can stop the effects of aluminum on the body.
Silver sulfadiazine:  An antibacterial cream that is used for burns to keep the area from getting infected.
Simple carbohydrates: A simple sugar. It is a type of carbohydrate that, owing to its chemical structure, is rapidly digested and absorbed into the blood stream.  Glucose, fructose and lactose are examples, as well as sucrose (table sugar). Simple carbohydrates are absorbed into the blood stream rapidly; consumption may lead to hypoglycemia, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems as well as obesity. They also inhibit immune function.
Simple Sugar:  A basic sugar unit that can’t be broken down into a more basic sugar.  Glucose is an example of a simple sugar.
Skin graft:  A piece of skin taken from part of the body and used to replace lost or damaged skin.
Smooth muscle tissue:  Muscle cells that are flat or round instead of in long strings like normal muscle.  This type of muscle is used for lining such as in blood vessels, or for other purposes such as the iris of the eye or the bladder.
Sodium: An electrolyte mineral needed to control your blood pressure and the amount of water in your body.
Sodium Ascorbate:  A chemical form of Vitamin C.
Soluble fiber: Dietary fiber that dissolves in water to form a soft gel.  The fiber comes from some fruits and vegetables.  They slow down the passage of waste in the digestive tract which is believed to help control cholesterol and sugar levels in the blood by slowing down the rate that they are absorbed into the body. They become gummy and at least partially dissolve in water.
Soporific: Producing sleep.
Sorbic acid: An organic acid used as a food preservative.
Sorbitol:  A sweet white crystal that comes from plant alcohol.  It is made from certain berries or made chemically in the laboratory.  It is used as a sweetener in foods.
Sprouts:  baby vegetables.  A seed starts to grow into a sprout, and at 4 days have huge amounts of nutrients and phytonutrients.
Starch: Glucose molecules hooked together into branching chains by plant cells. Digested and absorbed slowly, starches supply energy at the rate at which the body uses it.  A complex sugar that is white in color and exists, in large amounts, in potatoes and certain grains such as rice.
Statin:  (statin drug)  A drug that is given by medical doctors for the purpose of lowering cholesterol.  It does this by stopping the body’s ability to create cholesterol.   Cholesterol is needed to maintain nerve cells.
Steroid: One of a group of fat-soluble organic compounds with a characteristic chemical composition.  A number of different hormones, drugs, and other substances – including cholesterol – are classified as steroids.
Steroid hormones: The sex hormones and hormones of the adrenal cortex. These hormones are made in your adrenal glands from cholesterol.
Steroids: A family of cortisone-like medications; prescribed when adrenal glands do not produce enough of the hormone cortisone; also used for treatment of swellings, allergic reactions, and other conditions.
Stool: Human solid waste; feces.
Stroke: An attack in which the brain is suddenly deprived of oxygen as a result of interrupted blood flow.  If it continues for more than a few minutes, brain damage and even death may result. A sudden block or break in a blood vessel in the brain that causes serious damage in the brain and can result in loss of consciousness, partial loss of movement, loss of speech, loss of sensation or death. If there is partial loss of movement or sensation, it usually occurs on one side of the body. The side of the body that loses ability to move or feel is determined by which side of the brain the break or block of the blood vessel occurred in.  If the left side of the brain has the damage, then the right side of the body will be reduced in ability because the left side of the brain controls the right side of the body and the right side of the brain controls the left side of the body.
Strontium: A mineral that can be found in grains, leafy vegetables, spices and roots that can influence the body by making it create more bone tissue.  This has the result of strengthening bones and making them more dense.
Sublingual: Literally, “under the tongue”. Sublingual medications and supplements often look like tablets or liquids meant for swallowing, but they are designed to be held in the mouth while the active ingredient is absorbed into the bloodstream through the mucous membranes.
Sugar: A substance containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, and belonging therefore to the chemical group of carbohydrates. (Basic Function) A molecule that is used in the chemical processes in a cell to provide energy for the cell or other cells of the body.  (Common usage) Any of the many forms of sugar whether simple or complex.
Sulfa Drug:  A common name for any drug that starts with the prefix sulfa.  These drugs usually contain a specific molecule as part of their chemical structure.  Most drugs with this label are antibiotics.  They are not widely used today because many people are allergic to them and most bacteria are resistant to them.
Sulfonylureas:  Drugs that are given by doctors that force the pancreas to create more insulin than it would naturally be able to create.
Sulphur sublimatum:  Comes from sulfur and fights cravings for anything sweet.
Superoxide dismutase (SOD): An enzyme made in our body that neutralizes free radicals that could otherwise cause damage to cells.
Supersaturated fatty acids: Another name for Omega-3 fatty acids that distinguishes them from Omega-6 fatty acids.
Symptom: An alteration in normal feeling or functioning experienced as a result of a bodily disorder. A feeling of illness or physical or mental change that is caused by a particular disease.   Nausea can be a symptom of food poisoning.  The symptoms he showed were tiredness, irritability and nervousness.   Any single problem that is caused by and shows a more serious and general problem.   High blood sugar levels and weight gain are only a symptom of diabetes; the more general problem is insulin resistance. 
Syncope: Temporary loss of consciousness; fainting.
Syndrome: A group of signs and symptoms that together are known or presumed to characterize a disorder.
Synergy: An interaction between two or more substances in which their action is greater when they are together than the sum of their individual actions would be.
Synthetic Vitamins; Man-made vitaimns. Most brands of supplements available today are made from synthetics, petrochemicals. These “vitamins” are chemical compounds that have been manufactured in laboratory to copy the molecular structure of natural vitamins. Your body is designed to absorb nutrients from food. For this reason most health experts agree that it is best to obtain your daily vitamin supplement from whole food, (real food) than from synthetic vitamin sources.  In nature, vitamins always come in complex parts and associated helper vitamins. Synthetic vitamins never have these and there is a big difference in how the body deals with synthetics.  They will get rid of them.
Systemic: Pertaining to the entire body.

T cell: A type of lymphocyte that is a crucial part of the immune system.
TB or Tbsp – Abbreviation for tablespoon
Teratogen: An agent that causes malformation of a developing embryo or fetus.
Tertiary butyhydroquinone (TBHQ): An artificial preservative for oils, which replace natural vitamin E and carotene, which are removed during oil processing.
Therapy, alternative: The treatment of disease by means other than conventional medical, pharmacological and surgical techniques.
Thiamine (Tiamine) See Vitamin B1
Thrombocytopenia (TCP): A low number of platelets in the blood.
Throbmus: An obstruction in a blood vessel.
Thrombosis:  A blockage preventing the flow of blood in the body caused by a clot.
Thrush: A fungal infections caused by Candida albicans that is characterized by small whitish spots on the tongue and the insides of the cheeks. It occurs most often in infants and in persons with weakened immune systems.
Thyroid (Thyroid gland):  A gland in the front of your lower neck (throat) that releases different hormones for the purpose of regulating the metabolism of the body.
Thyroid Hormone:  A name referring to two hormones that are made by the Thyroid gland.  The hormone increases the metabolism rate and is essential in the creating of new cells in the body.
Tid: (in reference to dosage of pills or capsules):  An abbreviation for 3 times a day.  If you are taking 3 capsules tid, then you are taking 9 capsules per day.
Tissue: A group of connected cells in the body that are similar to each other and have the same purpose.  Some examples are skin tissue, lung tissue or muscle tissue.
Tone: The firmness of tissue in the body such as muscle or skin.
Topical: Pertaining to the surface of the body.
Toxicity: The quality of being poisonous.  Toxicity reactions in the body impair bodily functions and/or damage cells.
Toximolecular medical practice: The use of substances foreign to the body in the treatment of disease. This practice rests on the fact that synthetic, toxic (drug) molecules can be patented.
Toxin: A poison that impairs the health and functioning of the body.
Trace element: A mineral required by the body in extremely small quantities. Simple chemical substances in very tiny amounts.
Tract:  Connected tubes and organs in the body of a person or an animal that have a particular purpose.  Urine passes through the urinary tract so it can be removed from the body as waste.
Trans-fatty acid: A fatty acid in which the hydrogen atom on the carbon chain atoms involved in a double bond are situated on opposite sides of the molecule.
Tremor: Involuntary trembling.
Triglyceride (TG): A molecule of fat or oil. This is the form in which fatty acids are stored in the body’s fat tissues and in the seeds of plants. It is the primary type of lipid in the diet.  It is a compound consisting of three fatty acids plus glycerol.
Triglycerides:  A natural fat that can be found in body tissues or circulating in the blood. They make up a large portion of the stored body fat in most people and animals. Its normal use by the body is to be turned into energy. It is believed by the medical field that having a high level of triglycerides in the blood can lead to or be a sign of hardening of the arteries.
tsp:  Abbreviation for teaspoon.
Tumor: An abnormal mass of tissue that serves no function.  Tumors are usually categorized as either benign or malignant (cancerous).
Type A personality: A personality that tends to be impatient and aggressive. Persons with Type A personalities tend to have stronger stress reactions, and may be more susceptible to cardiovascular disease.
Type B personality: A personality that tends to be relaxed and patient, and less reactive to stress.  Those with type B personalities may be less prone to develop stress-related illnesses such as high blood pressure and heart disease.
Type 1 Diabetes:  The body stops producing insulin or produces too little insulin to regulate the blood glucose level. Type 1 Diabetes comprises about 10% of total cases of diabetes in the United States. Type 1 diabetes is typically recognized in childhood. Type 1 diabetes can occur due to destruction of the pancreas by alcohol, disease, or failure of cells in the pancreas, which produce insulin. People with type 1 diabetes generally require daily insulin treatment to sustain life.
Type 2 Diabetes: The pancreas still produces insulin, but the body is partially or completely unable to use the insulin.  The body tries to overcome this resistance by producing more and more insulin. 


Ulcer: An open sore on or in the body. It can be located on the skin, in the stomach, in the mouth or in other areas of the body. They usually occur in the following pattern: 1) Weakness of the area. This can be because of lack of nutrition that weakens the cells, or because the area got hit, rubbed roughly or damaged in some way. 2) Infection. 3) Delayed healing of injury. 
Ultra-high-frequency sound waves.  Ultrasound technology is used in a number of different medical diagnosis and treatment tools.

Ultraviolet (UV): The skin-burning part of the sun’s spectrum.
Unrefined (crude): In its natural state; not altered, nutrient-rich.
Unsaturated fat: Any of a number of dietary fats that are liquid at room temperature. Unsaturated fats come from vegetable sources and are good sources of essential fatty acids.
Unsaturated fatty acid: A fatty acid with one or more double bonds between carbons in the chain. See article Essential Fatty Acids.
Urticaria: Hives.

USP:  A set of rules and guidelines for the production of chemical substances and quality control tests for them used in the United States. A label associated with chemical vitamins that mean that they meet the USP guidelines of purity.  These are the standard vitamins that you find on the shelf in stores that are all man made chemical forms of vitamins.
USRDA: United States Recommended Daily Allowances. Vasodilator: A drug that dilates (widens) blood vessels.
Utilization: (in regards to vitamins or nutrients) The act of the body using a nutrient or material as part of its natural functions.


Vaccine:  A preparation administered to achieve immunity against a specific agent by inducing the body to make antibodies to that agent.  A vaccine may be a suspension of living or dead microorganisms, or a solution of an allergen or viral or bacterial antigens.
Vanadium:  A nutrient that is only needed in very small amounts by the body.  It reduces the production of cholesterol and has the ability to function in the body like insulin.
Vascular: Pertaining to the circulatory system. Relating to the tubes that carry blood or liquids in animal and plants.
Vegan: Someone who eats no animal foods.
Vegetarian: Someone who doesn’t eat meat. Some vegetarians limit or don’t eat other animal foods as well.
Vein: One of the blood vessels that returns the blood from the body tissues to the heart.
Venom: A poisonous substance produced by an animal, such as certain snakes and insects.
Very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL): Vehicles made in the liver for transporting fats and cholesterol.
Vicious cycle:  A continuing unpleasant situation, created when one problem causes another problem which then makes the first problem worse.  This situation usually continues to get worse unless it is stopped and reversed by addressing the actual cause of the original problem.
Virus: Any of a vast group of minute, often disease-causing, structures composed of a protein coat and a core of DNA and/or RNA. Because they are incapable of reproducing on their own (they must reproduce inside the cell of an infected host), viruses are not technically considered living organisms.  Unlike bacteria, viruses are not affected by antibiotics.
Visualization: A technique that involves consciously using the mind to influence the health and functioning of the body. Also called creative visualization.
Vital signs: Basic indicators of an individual’s health status, including pulse, breathing, blood pressure, and body temperature.
Vitamin: An organic compound essential for normal health. One of the approximately fifteen organic substances that is essential in small quantities for life and health. The body cannot make them from other substances. You must get all your vitamins from outside your body, from the foods you eat and from any supplements you take. Food processing removes much of the content of these essential nutrients and therefore cause deficiency, deterioration, and degeneration of cells, tissues, organs, and human health.  A natural substance that is necessary for the growth and good health of the body. Vitamins are found in most foods.  They can be separated from foods in a concentrated chemical form, but in this form they are not as effective.  A substance can only be classified as a vitamin if it can be proven to be needed by the body in its natural functions, and causes illness when the body is deficient in this substance.  Most vitamins cannot be made by the body but have to be taken in with the food.
Vitamin A: A fat-soluble vitamin needed for healthy epithelial tissues (covers internal and external surfaces of your body), eyes, growth, bone formation, and immunity.  It is found in some vegetables, fish, milk, and eggs.  It is important to the health of the outer layer of cells in the skin and organs.
Vitamin B: See B Vitamins
Vitamin B1:  A water-soluble vitamin found in beans, grains, liver, eggs and fish. It plays an important part of the process the turns carbohydrates and fat into energy.  Without it, the cells of the body would be unable to copy their genetic material and wouldn’t be able to divide. It is also necessary in the nerves in order to transmit nerve signals properly.
Vitamin B2: A water-soluble vitamins that is found in animal meat, dairy products, and green leafy vegetables.  It is necessary for the breakdown of fat, helps the body use iron, boosts the immune system and allows the eye to adjust to different amounts of light.
Vitamin B3:  A water-soluble vitamins found in meat, eggs, milk and certain vegetables.   It is necessary for proper central nervous system functions, creation of energy in the body and the removal of toxic substances from the body.
Vitamin B5: A water-soluble vitamin found in meat, nuts, lover, whole gains, egg yolk, and green vegetables.  It is vital for making cholesterol, red blood cells and certain brain chemicals.  The body also uses it in turning fats and carbohydrates into energy.
Vitamin B6: A water-soluble vitamins found in almost all foods but especially brewer’s yeast, carrots, chicken, meat, eggs and fish.  It is used in the creation of amino acids in the body and is involved in turning them into proteins.  It also plays a role in releasing the sugar stored in muscle tissue for use by the cells for energy.  It is used in many chemical reactions in the body that are necessary to the body’s activity.
Vitamins B7:  A vitamin found in egg yolk, barley, liver, and yeast that is used in cell growth, the production of essential fatty acids and in the use of fats for energy.
Vitamin B9:  A water-soluble vitamin found in Brewer’s Yeast, liver, green leafy vegetables and roots.  This vitamin is vital in the creation of new cells in the body.  It is needed for the cell to make copies of genetic material.
Vitamin B12:   A water-soluble vitamins found in organ meats like the liver, kidney or heart, and oysters.  It is also found in small amounts in other seafood and egg yolks.  This vitamin plays a vital role in the formation of the lining around the nerves.  It is also needed for the proper function of nerve cells and the formation of blood.  This vitamin is needed for the creation of new cells in the body.  It additionally promotes the growth of nerve cells and the regeneration of damaged nerve cells. 
Vitamin C
: A water-soluble vitamin needed to make the body’s connective tissue and for many other functions. Vitamin C is also a powerful and abundant antioxidant.   A water-soluble vitamin found in fruits and leafy vegetables.  It boosts the immune system, helps to heal wounds, and promotes a healthy heart. It is vital in many functions of the body.

Vitamin D: A fat-soluble vitamin that the body makes from sunshine on your skin and also gets from some foods. It’s needed to build healthy bones and to regulate the amounts of calcium in your blood.  It occurs in fish oils and eggs.  It is essential for the formation of blood and teeth.
Vitamin E: A fat-soluble vitamin that is a powerful antioxidant. Plays a key role in preventing cellular injury associated with premature aging, inflammation and infection.  It is an anti-oxidant. An essential vitamin found in seed oil. It is required by the body to prevent the destruction of membrane fatty acids by oxidation. See Article Antioxidants 
Vitamin K: A fat-soluble vitamin needed to help the blood clot.  It also plays a part in proper bone growth and the proper transport of calcium throughout the body.
Vitamin P: Vitamin P is another name for Bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids are also active in preserving the structures of capillaries, have an antibacterial effect and promote circulation. It is indicated in the production of bile, lowering blood cholesterol levels and in the prevention and treatment of cataracts.


Water-soluble: Vitamins that dissolve in water and can’t be stored in your body in the fat tissue.  The B vitamins and Vitamin C are water-soluble.   Any amount of these types of vitamins not immediately used by the body are usually thrown away and released in the urine.
Weight:  A measurement of the physical force toward the ground created by gravity acting on something.  This will change depending on the level of gravity where you are.  An object that weighs 100 pounds on earth will weigh about 17 pounds on the Moon.
Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome: Nerve damage caused by low thiamin levels from years of alcoholism.
White blood cell: A blood cell that functions in fighting infection and in wound repair.
White Kidney Bean:  A medium-sized, white, oval bean with a thin skin and mild flavor.  When eaten it can block the process of turning starch into sugar.
Whole Food Vitamins: Most brands of supplements available today are made from synthetics These “vitamins” are chemical compounds that have been manufactured in laboratory to copy the molecular structure of natural vitamins. Your body is designed to absorb nutrients from food. For this reason most health experts agree that it is best to obtain your daily vitamin supplement from whole food, (real food) than from synthetic vitamin sources.  
Wild Yam:
A tuberous plant found in the tropics. The roots contain a natural form which resembles the female hormone progesterone. Wild yam cream or tincture can be helpful for relieving menopause symptoms.
Withdrawal: The process of adjustment that occurs when the use of a habit-forming substance to which the body has become accustomed is discontinued. 


Xanthophylls: Carotenoids found in dark-green leafy vegetables. See also Lutien, Zeaxanthin.
Xerosis: A condition of dryness.
Xylitol:  A naturally occurring sweetener found in the fibers of many fruits and vegetables.  Used as a substitute for sugar.
Yeast: A type of a single-celled fungus.  Certain types of yeast can cause infection, most commonly in the mouth, vagina, or gastrointestinal tract.  Common yeast infections include vaginitis and thrush.  A type of fungus which is used in making alcoholic drinks such as beer and wine, and for making bread swell and become light.  They usually feed on sugar and release alcohol, carbon dioxide or other things depending on the type of yeast.
Zeaxanthin: A carotenoid found in dark-green leafy vegetables. It helps protect your eyes from free radicals.
Zein: Protein from corn.
Zinc: A mineral needed to make many enzymes and hormones.  A metal that in specific forms is a nutrient used by the body for many chemical processes.  It is essential for making protein in the body, for strengthening the out walls of the body’s cells, healing wounds, and many other things
Zyme: A fermenting substance.

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