Research continues to show that free radical damage and inflammation are primary causes of aging and degenerative diseases like cancer and heart disease. Antioxidants are nutrients, primarily found in plants, which prevent free radical damage and reduce inflammation.
Research also shows that people who eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, known to be loaded with natural antioxidants, have less degenerative disease. As a result, many nutritionists are recommending we should eat 5-7 generous servings of fresh fruits and vegetables every day. Unfortunately, research also shows that very few people actually do this.
The research on antioxidants has sparked a huge market for antioxidant supplements and one popular way of increasing antioxidants has been to take antioxidant juice drinks. The claims for some of these products have been outrageous, but these supplements are helpful for people who are on the go and have a hard time getting their fruits and vegetables.
Ant, although I hate nutritional fads, including the antioxidant juice drink fad, I really do like is Nature’s Sunshine’s Thai-Go. Thai-Go is a blend of fruit juices and other botanical ingredients that are rich in naturally occurring antioxidants such polyphenols, flavonoids, xanthones and vitamin C.
In my experince, Thai-Go does help to reduce inflammation and conditions of excess “heat” in the body. It also seems to improve energy production and has some mild, pain-relieving properties. Here’s a little information about the information in Nature’s Sunshine’s Thai-Go.
Mangosteen Fruit Juice Extract
Mangosteen is a tropical fruit which is highly praised for its luscious flavor. Mangosteen is very high in compounds called xanthones, some of the most powerful antioxidants discovered to date. Thai-Go contains large amounts of alpha manostin and gamma mangostin.
About 1,000 studies have been published on xanthones. They have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, and also inhibit platelet aggregation, help prevent the formation of blood clots and relax artery walls. Xanthones can also inhibit oxidation of LDL cholesterol. These properties make them useful for people with cardiovascular diseases such as ischemic heart disease, atherosclerosis, hypertension and thrombosis.
Xanthones have immune-enhancing properties. They have been shown to be antibiotic, antiviral (specifically against the Epstein-Barr virus) and antifungal. They also have histamine-blocking actions which can be beneficial for allergy sufferers. Xanthones are also potential cancer inhibiting compounds, especially in leukemia.
Because of their anti-inflammatory action, xanthones have pain relieving qualities. They may also be beneficial in diabetes. Mangosteen and xanthones are also found in IF Relief and Super ORAC.
Wolfberry Lycium Fruit Extract
Lycium is a major Chinese tonic herb. The fruits, also known as goji berries, are a rich source of vitamin C. They protect the liver against damage from exposure to toxins. The berries are also used in China as a blood, liver and kidney tonic. They have a cooling quality, reducing fever, sweating, irritability and thirst. They have been used to stop nosebleeds, reduce the vomiting of blood and help with failing eyesight. They have also been used for dizziness, tinnitus, blurred vision and wasting conditions.
Prized from ancient times, pomegranate has been shown to have antioxidant properties that may help prevent prostate cancer or inhibit its growth. They may also reduce the risk of breast cancer. Pomegranate helps prevent the oxidation of cholesterol, inhibits blood platelet aggregation and improves oxygen uptake in the heart muscle, making it an excellent food for the circulatory system. Pomegranate is an ingredient in the new Thai-Go formula being introduced this year.
Acai has been a very popular “fad” antioxidant of late, being the latest antioxidant superfood. It comes from the Amazon and is a very nutritious food, being high in B vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and omega-3 fatty acids. It is also a rick source of anthocyanins and other phenolics with antioxidant properties. Acai also contains oleic acid (omega-9), the fatty acid found in abundance in olive oil.
Green Tea Leaves Extract
This traditional beverage of the Orient has been found to contain powerful antioxidants called polyphenols. These are similar in nature to the polyphenols known as proanthocyanidins. These compounds aid liver detoxification. Research in China suggests tea may help hepatitis. The tea extract used in NSP’s Thai-Go is a concentrate of the polyphenols and is caffeine-free.
Sea Buckthorn Fruit Extract
Sea Buckthorn grows mainly in sandy coastal areas and dry riverbeds in mountainous regions. The berries are very high in vitamin C and antioxidant flavonoids. They are mildly stringent and have been used to enhance the immune system’s ability to resist infection and promote healing of wounds. Sea buckthorn also supports healthy circulation.
Concord Grape Juice Concentrate, Red Grape Concentrate, Red Grape skin Extract, Red Grapeseed Extract
Grapes have a long history of being used to heal disease. Grapes have been traditionally used to treat varicose veins, hemorrhoids and capillary fragility. The nutrient content of grapes is close to that of blood plasma, which is why grape fasts have been used for detoxification.
The famous herbalist Juliette de Bairacli Levy recommended the grape cure “when the human body has become sick almost beyond reasonable hope of recovery.” The grape cure consists of living off nothing but fresh, unsprayed grapes (and a few leaves and tendrils) for a period of time.
Alchemists believed the grape to be of the highest order in the plant kingdom because of their ability to make wine from them. Grape fruits are alkalizing and help remove acid waste from the body, which may be part of their curing power.
Grape seeds contain the antioxidant compounds oligomeric procyanidins (OPCs). OPCs are condensed tannins (polyphenols) with powerful antioxidant capabilities. They are found in pine bark, grape seed and green tea. Nature’s Sunshine Products’ Grapeine contains concentrated OPCs, but they are also present in smaller amounts in Thai-Go.
OPCs have been reported to help conditions like arthritis, diabetes, macular dgeneration and lupus. The may help prevent cancer and Parkinson’s disease by preventing the oxidative damage that causes these diseases. OPCs speed the healing of bruises, ease pain and speed recovery from surgery.
Blueberry Concentrate, Red Raspberry Concentrate, Apple Fruit Extract
These fruit juice products don’t just add flavor to Thai-Go, they are also loaded with antioxidants and other valuable nutrients. For instance, blueberries are rich in anthocyanins, which have protective effects against free radical damage to the eyes and blood vessels.
Nature’s Sunshine recommends taking one ounce (two tablespoons) of Thai-Go twice a day. There’s nothing wrong with taking more if your body craves it. I mix Thai-Go with a natural lemonaide I make from fresh lemon juice and maple syrup and use it as a summer-time refresher to beat the heat. I’ve used this same combination to combat allergies and have gone through a bottle of Thai-Go in a week doing this.
For an energy pick-up try a little Thai-Go with some liquid chlorophyll. Thai-Go can also be used with water or juice. Try adding a little Thai-Go to some sparkling water for a fruit spritzer.
Thai-Go is safe for children, who usually like it. It is also safe for the elderly, nursing moms and pregnant women.
Suggested Further Reading
Herbal Therapy and Supplements by Merrily A. Kuhn and David Winston
PDR for Herbal Medicines by Medical Economics Company
The ABC+D Approach correspondence course by Steven H. Horne
The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants by Andrew Chevalier