Why Hi Form uses mineral tissue salts in our formulas

Written by Equine Nutritional Therapist and Medical Herbalist Antoinette Foster

Most horse owners, when they think of mineral salt supplements for horses, naturally enough, they think in terms mainly of electrolytes, of calcium, and of iron.

But I want to broaden the horse owner’s view about mineral and trace element use and needs both from the point of view of unrecognized therapeutic action, and from the importance of effective absorption and utilization.

Mineral salts have the ability to increase the action of powerful drugs or herbal remedies, or enzymes, or vitamins, therefore making extreme dosages unnecessary for the same result, but at the same time building the horse’s resistance so the treatment has a greater effect.

Firstly, some salts have a much wider action and use in the human and animal body than is generally recognized by most veterinary and medical authorities. Knowledge of these wider uses means that these minerals can be used more selectively in the case of a particular need or particular symptoms.

Much of the known yet overlooked therapeutic information regarding common natural mineral salts... such as silica, calcium sulphate, sodium sulphate, sodium chloride, iron phosphate, calcium phosphate, potassium phosphate, potassium chloride, magnesium phosphate, and zinc sulphate, comes from discoveries made in the 1800’s by German doctors, particularly by Dr. W. H.Schuessler in 1873. He obtained his data from homoeopathic clinical trials or ‘provings’ involving thousands of human volunteers, mostly university students, who imbibed both large and small doses of a variety of triturated (finely ground) mineral salts to establish optimal therapeutic effect. It was found that the above minerals in small doses, often in combination with others, have repeatable therapeutic effects beyond the standard, widely known uses of these simple mineral salts.

These were found to be particularly helpful in individuals with suboptimal nutrition, meaning individuals who were not getting enough minerals from their diet.

These minerals represent the core of the so-called ‘12 Tissue Salts’, originally described and utilized by Dr. Schuessler. This so-called ‘tissue salt’ therapy is the basis for the Blackmores range of Celloids®, so widely used by naturopaths with success both in Australia and overseas in the last 50 + years.

Secondly, of utmost importance is the form of the salt in which the mineral is delivered to the animal. As the saying goes,“oils aint oils”, meaning that not all calciums are the same, not all irons are the same, etc. Different salts of one particular mineral can have significantly different effects both in terms of absorption/ utilization of the actual mineral, and also in terms of a specific therapeutic action.

Let’s take calcium as an example, it being the mineral needed in the largest quantities in animals. We note that calcium does not occur naturally as the metal calcium, but occurs in nature as various salts. The main natural-occurring calcium salts are calcium carbonate, the most common form, (chalk, limestone, marble, and dolomite); calcium sulphate (gypsum); calcium fluoride (fluorspar); and calcium phosphate (complexed as apatite and organic bonemeal).

Calcium carbonate is the cheapest but is poorly absorbed in many cases, compared to calcium phosphate (hydroxyapatite complex) which is well absorbed and utilized, perhaps because its animal source gives it the inherent balance most suited to animal absorption.

Calcium sulphate, also is not well-tolerated or absorbed as a bulk source of calcium. But, it also has therapeutic value in small-dispersed doses, particularly helpful in suppurative conditions such as chronic thick, yellow and lumpy mucus discharges, recurrent abscesses and poor healing after injury.

Several laboratory prepared salts of calcium are also in wide use and some of these also show good absorption compared to calcium carbonate. Most useful of these are the chelated calciums, combined to amino acids and other organic nutrients such as calcium orotate and calcium gluconate. However, these do not provide the inherent needed phosphate balance found in the organic calcium phosphate complex.

Another interesting example is Sodium and 3 of its salts. Generally there are no problems with the absorption of any sodium salts. All sodium salts are involved in fluid balance. Sodium chloride, common salt, is essential to maintain normal osmotic fluid pressure both within and outside of cells, as well as facilitating normal nerve conduction. Sodium sulphate (Glaubers salts) when given in small doses of the order of 5-10 gram per day for horses has a diuretic action, shifting excess fluid from the tissues and bloodstream, stimulating both kidney action and bile production. Excessive doses however, only act as a bowel purgative, as do excessive doses of Epsoms salts. Sodium phosphate has different properties again. It is useful also in similar small doses, but more than other sodium salts, aids the breakdown of excess tissue lactic acid and promotes water absorption. Also it is effective in reducing gastric acidity.

The next example, Iron, presents a common absorption problem for many horses. A wide variety of laboratory-prepared iron salts are on the market, and these have varying success with individual animals. It is usually the case that the horses which are in the greatest need of iron supplementation are those which absorb it poorly and are often intolerant of iron supplements.

Consequently, the cheapest, Ferrous sulphate, is not recommended, it being quite toxic to the liver when absorbed. It inhibits protein digestion, is mostly unabsorbed, and irritates the gastrointestinal mucosa even in small doses.

Other commonly used salts are ferrous gluconate, ferric citrate, ferrous fumarate and other iron aminoacid chelates. The amino acid chelate forms appear to be the least toxic and are fairly well absorbed.

However, Hi-Form Australia has opted to use a less commonly known, simple inorganic complex which has been used successfully in Europe for over a hundred years. This is known simply as Iron phosphate complex and consists of a complexed mixture of mainly ferrous phosphate, with ferric phosphate and ferrous oxide.

This Iron phosphate complex is well absorbed and tolerated. It is not only useful in iron-deficiency anaemia, but also has a clear anti-inflammatory action, reduces fever and local hyperaemia when given in small, frequently repeated doses.

My final interesting example is Silica. This is simply pure sand micro-fined to a degree that it can be absorbed. Generally of course, silica is considered to have no medicinal value. However, homoeopathic doctors have used it successfully for over a hundred years for strengthening hair and nails and hooves in horses. This trace element also is a potent detoxifier with action on arthritis, abscesses, boils, and chronic suppurative infections. Its action on toxins and foreign bodies such as splinters appears to be centrifugal, in that it tends to drive toxins to the surface. Part of its action is believed to occur through aiding calcium utilization.

Using mineral tissue salts instead of poorer forms of minerals means your horse will benefit enormously due to the exceptionally high absorption and utilisation rate. This means very low dosing and very cost effective.

CALCIUM FLUORIDE: Elasticity Mineral The component of cells of bones, tooth enamel, skin fibres, muscle tissue and blood vessels. Signs of deficiency include varicose veins, eczema, piles/hemorrhoids, sluggish circulation, poor enamel of teeth, brittle nails, cracked or cut skin.

CALCIUM PHOSPHATE: Nutrition salt and Tonic Major mineral component of every structure, tissue and fluid in the body except connective tissue. A vital component of the body’s nutrition process from digestion, assimilation, cell growth through to energy expenditure. Deficiency signs include poor appetite, digestion and malabsorption. Slow metabolism; slow healing during and after illness and trauma. Slow retarded circulation i.e.. Chilblains, spasms, pains coldness and numbness of the limbs. All bone diseases.

CALCIUM SULPHATE: Cell Healer and Blood Purifier Mineral constituent of the liver. It helps in the removal of waste products from the blood stream and tissues of the body. Cleanses and purifies. Deficiency signs include acne, pimples, catarrh, gumboils, in extreme pimples can progress to become abscesses and ulcers. Frontal headaches and neuralgia. It may also be useful for slow wound healing where inflammation or infection are evident.

IRON PHOSPHATE: First Aide Salt Constituent of haemoglobin. Vital as the carrier of oxygen to every cell of the body. Ferr. Phos. Should always be taken as a supplementary to a more specific treatment, no matter what the symptoms. Necessary in the treatment of all acute illness and trauma. Indicated whenever there is inflammation i.e.. heat, redness, pain or any other signs of infection. High temperature, fever, colds, flu, congestion. Extremely helpful as part of the treatment of anemia or blood loss of any kind including menstruation. Extremely useful for temporary relief of mild fevers, inflammation and common respiratory complaints.

POTASSIUM CHLORIDE: Blood Conditioner Major constituent of fibrin, which is in every tissue in the body except bone. Deficiency results in thick, white, sticky secretions i.e.. Catarrh, mucous, phlegm. Results in congestion of the body and lymphatic system, which the body has difficulty clearing.

POTASSIUM PHOSPHATE: Nerve Nutrient Constituent of nerve tissue and all body fluids. Important in formation and maintenance of tissue. Vital action in the brain, nerves, muscles and blood cells. Deficiency signs include feeling tired, weak, exhausted and stressed, nervous and edgy. Helpful in insomnia, depression, anxiety, nervous headaches and dyspepsia. All illness related to the brain and nervous system.

POTASSIUM SULPHATE: Skin Salt Has a special affinity for the cells forming the skin and mucous lining of all bodily organs. Works with Ferr.Phos. to carry oxygen to every cell. Deficiency causes yellow coating to tongue, yellow – green discharge from any tissue or skin surface including skin scaling and crusting.

MAGNESIUM PHOSPHATE: Nerve Relaxant & Anti Spasmodic A major constituent of muscles, nerves, bone, brain, spine, sperm, teeth and blood corpuscles. It combines with albumin and water to form a fluid that nourishes and nurtures the white nerve fibres of the nervous system. Deficiency signs include muscle and nervous tension, sharp headaches, all types of neuralgia, blurred vision, migraine, muscle rigidity, all types of spasming colicky pain.

SODIUM CHLORIDE: Fluid Balancer & Water distributor Also known as Sodium Chloride it is the major constituent of every cell in the body whether liquid or solid. It maintains the body’s water balance by controlling the movement of water in and out of the cells. Any sign of excessive dryness or moisture in any area of the body is a sign of deficiency of Sodium chloride. For example fluid retention or swelling in parts of the body, skin dryness, constipation, swollen, dry or cracked tongue.

SODIUM PHOSPHATE: Acid Neutraliser A constituent of blood, muscle, nerve, brain cells and the fluid between cells. Sod. Phos. is needed in all complaints related to hyper-acidity. Also regulates bile. Use to treat heartburn, gastric reflux or indigestion, all types of inflammation particularly relating to gout or rheumatism, burning with diarrhea, scolding urine or stinging vaginal discharge.

SODIUM SULPHATE: Water Eliminator Eliminates excessive water from tissues, blood and other body fluids. It also acts as a cleanser and purifier of toxins from the fluid surrounding every cell of the body. Necessary for healthy functioning of the liver and pancreas. Indicated for all ailments of, or affecting the liver eg. biliousness, sandy deposits in urine, brown-green coating of the tongue, bitter taste. Particularly important in treating rheumatic complaints, gout and influenza as it eliminates the associated toxic fluids from the system.

SILICA: Toxic Eliminator The major constituent of blood, skin, hair, nails, bones, nerve sheaths and some tissues. Indicated whenever there is pus formation eg. abscesses, styes, boils, gumboils. Also for cyst in any part of the body. Can dissolve scar tissue and accumulations around joints and muscles such as rheumatism. Brittle nails and poor hair condition are also a sign of a deficiency in silica.


Calcium:- Calcium is the most abundant mineral found in the body, almost all of which is found in the bones and teeth. A deficiency of calcium may lead to porous, fragile bones, retarded growth, tooth decay, lower back and joint pain, muscle cramps and spasms, insomnia, irritability or hypertension.

Phosphorus:- Phosphorus is mainly found in bones and teeth working alongside calcium to maintain strength and rigidity. It is responsible for controlling the amount of energy released from our systems. It is useful for healthy muscles, nerves and for mental and physical activity.

Phosphorus may assist in the treatment of nervous disorders, reduced sexual vigour and general weakness.

Magnesium:- Magnesium is one of the main constituents of nerve fibres. It may be a valuable aid in the treatment of muscular spasms such as uncontrollable twitching and convulsive fits and also in relieving cramping associated with menstruation. It is thought to be helpful where stabbing, shooting pains characterise symptoms for example in cases of neuralgia, neuritis, angina, sciatica and some types of headaches.

Magnesium is essential to the health of the heart. It may assist in the treatment of arteriosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases. This mineral might also be useful for kidney stones, epilepsy, nausea and stress.

Potassium:- Potassium acts with sodium as an electrolyte to aid water balance and distribution throughout the body. It is also essential for proper heart functioning and normal heartbeat. It is essential for assisting the treatment of fluid retention, low blood pressure, high blood pressure and gastro-intestinal disorders. Potassium may also be of immense benefit where there is extreme tiredness, muscular weakness, irritability or depression.

Iron:- Iron is of tremendous value to the human body. It is involved in the formation of red blood cells and is a transporter of oxygen to every cell, providing us with the necessary burst of energy we all need to help us through our daily tasks. Iron also assists the memory and the ability to concentrate and helps build resistance to infection, stress and disease. A deficiency in iron can lead to a general run-down feeling, anaemia, headaches, acute infections, colds, flu, dizziness and shortness of breath during periods of exertion such as exercise.

Chromium:- Chromium is important in maintaining a glucose balance in the body. As a valuable aid in transferring glucose from the blood to the cells and the regulation of insulin activity, it may be of immense worth to those suffering diabetes or hypoglycaemia. The high fat, super sugary diets that have become so familiar to western civilisations can actually rob our bodies of much needed chromium. Chromium is also useful for reducing high blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides and assisting where wounds are slow to heal.

Iodine:- Kelp is a natural source of iodine as is most seafood. Almost all the iodine we consume is used by the thyroid gland to produce thyroxine, an important hormone for growth and metabolism. An iodine deficiency may result in rough wrinkled skin, unhealthy hair, anaemia, fatigue, low blood pressure, lethargy or goitre.

Manganese:- Manganese is essential for proper coordination between brain and body. Too little manganese may result in abnormal muscular movements, bad balance or muscular twitching. It may be useful for the treatment of male and female sterility, digestive disorders, convulsions or seizures. Manganese may be of some value to pregnant animals, because of its association with the maternal instinct and its action in maintaining healthy glands, including the mammary glands.

Zinc:- Zinc is found in all tissues and especially in the eye, kidney, brain, liver, muscle and reproductive organs. It aids the healing of burns, wounds and other minor skin disorders, is useful for bone development and maintaining a healthy resistance to disease and in the reduction of inflammation or body odour. Too little zinc can result in enlarged prostate, impaired sexual functions, dandruff, hair loss, poor sense of taste and smell, and stretch marks that commonly appear after extreme growth spurts such as in pregnancy and adolescence.

Silica:- Silica is responsible for the health of hair, skin and nails. It is a major constituent of collagen, the substance that joins cells together. It is important for the proper elasticity of skin and a deficiency may result in premature wrinkles, dull brittle hair or soft splitting nails.

Silica is also useful for breaking down calcium spurs and for assisting in the treatment of boils, abscesses and styes. It is necessary for strong bone formation and may assist the maintenance of healthy arteries.

Selenium:- Selenium is a powerful antioxidant mineral and is found in all tissues of the body. It has a protective effect against oxidative damage to body cells, particularly the heart. The body only needs a small amount of Selenium but due to diminishing levels in soils and foods, deficiencies are increasingly common. Selenium deficiency has been linked to a range of serious conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammatory diseases and other free radical related problems such as premature ageing.

Copper:- Copper is an essential trace mineral and is found throughout the body in the skeleton, skin, muscles, liver and brain. It is mainly required in various enzymatic processes in the body and assists the absorption and utilisation of Iron. Copper is only required in very small amounts but deficiency can have a serious effect on several body systems


Vitamin A:- helps build resistance to all types of infections and is necessary for general good health.

Vitamin B1 – (Thiamin) - Works to release energy from food by helping to metabolize carbohydrates and convert excess calories to fat. It is essential for normal development, growth, immunity, reproduction, healthy skin, blood and hair. It is vital for normal functioning of the brain and nervous system. It is important in the synthesis of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which affects several brain functions such as memory. This vitamin is produced by single-cell organisms in the ceacum of the horse and usually is sufficient to meet the needs of a horse under natural conditions. However stabled, performance horses or horses under stress require supplementation to meet their needs.

Vitamin B3 – Niacin – common name for nicotinic acid and nicotinamide or niacinamide. Water soluble white powder. The body can convert the amino acid tryptophan into niacin. Niacin is essential for the release of energy from food, normal growth and development, blood cell formation, hormone production, protection against cancer and the function of a healthy brain and nervous system. B3 is produced in the hind gut but little is absorbed so needs to be supplemented. A common deficiency symptom is dermatitis.

Vitamin B5:- helps stimulate the adrenal glands which produce cortisones and other hormones and is useful for protecting against physical and mental stress.

Vitamin B6 – (Pyridoxine) – Is involved in the release of energy from food and in the manufacture of most protein related compounds. It is essential for the manufacture of the genetic material of the cell, red blood cells, hormones, the absorption of vitamin B12 and the conversion of tryphophan to niacin. It is essential for the development of healthy cardiovascular, immune and nervous systems, skin and hair. B6 plays a vital role in the immune system by affecting functions such as cell multiplication and antibody production. Vitamin B6 is vital to the healthy development and function of the nervous system. It is involved in the manufacture of several neurotransmitters including serotonin, dopamine and noradrenalin thus playing a role in regulating mental processes and mood.

B6 is essential for the horses and the micro-organisms contained in the gut.

Vitamin C- Calcium ascorbate – Horses unlike humans can make their own vitamin C from glucose in the kidneys. Vitamin C is important for the manufacture of collagen, a protein which forms the basis of connective tissue. Vitamin C plays a role in wound healing, resistance to infection, adrenal hormone and neurotransmitter production. It is an antioxidant.

Vitamin D:- is necessary for proper formation of healthy teeth and bones, and the regulation and assimulation of calcium in the blood.

Vitamin E – alpha-tocopheral acetate – It acts as an antioxidant and provides protection for cells against free radical damage.


Yan Hu Suo is a herb is a blood stimulant, and has an analgesic effect and is used for organ pain, pain of injury, blood stasis and dysmenorrhoea.

Active constituents: almost 20 alkaloids have been isolated, including dl-tetrahydropalmatine (THP).

J Clin Pharmacol. 2004 Nov;44(11):1323-7.

Effects of Corydalis yanhusuo and Angelicae dahuricae on cold pressor-induced pain in humans: a controlled trial.

Yuan CS, Mehendale SR, Wang CZ, Aung HH, Jiang T, Guan X, Shoyama Y.


Tang Center for Herbal Medicine Research, Committee on Clinical Pharmacology, and Department of Anesthesia & Critical Care, Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago, Illinois 60637, USA.


Pain is considered the most common complaint worldwide for which patients seek treatment. Conventional analgesic agents play an important role in modern pain therapy, but they cause several adverse effects. Therefore, newer and better analgesics continue to be investigated. In this controlled clinical trial, the authors evaluated the analgesic effects of 2 herbal medicines, Corydalis yanhusuo and Angelicae dahuricae. They used the cold-pressor test-a simple, reliable, and widely used model in humans-for induction of tonic pain. They demonstrated that after a single, oral administration of the extracts of C. yanhusuo and A. dahuricae, the pain intensity and pain bothersomeness scores significantly decreased (both P < .01). Dose-related analgesic effect was also observed. Results from this study suggest that C. yanhusuo and A. dahuricae may have a potential clinical value for treating mild to moderate pain.

PLoS One. 2012;7(6):e38627. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0038627. Epub 2012 Jun 8.

l-Tetrahydropalmatine, an active component of Corydalis yanhusuo W.T. Wang, protects against myocardial ischaemia-reperfusion injury in rats.

Han Y, Zhang W, Tang Y, Bai W, Yang F, Xie L, Li X, Zhou S, Pan S, Chen Q, Ferro A, Ji Y.


Department of Geriatrics, the First Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, China.


l-Tetrahydropalmatine (l-THP) is an active ingredients of Corydalis yanhusuo W.T. Wang, which protects against acute global cerebral ischaemia-reperfusion injury. In this study, we show that l-THP is cardioprotective in myocardial ischaemia-reperfusion injury and examined the mechanism. Rats were treated with l-THP (0, 10, 20, 40 mg/kg b.w.) for 20 min before occlusion of the left anterior descending coronary artery and subjected to myocardial ischaemia-reperfusion (30 min/6 h). Compared with vehicle-treated animals, the infarct area/risk area (IA/RA) of l-THP (20, 40 mg/kg b.w.) treated rats was reduced, whilst l-THP (10 mg/kg b.w.) had no significant effect. Cardiac function was improved in l-THP-treated rats whilst plasma creatine kinase activity declined. Following treatment with l-THP (20 mg/kg b.w.), subunit of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase p85, serine(473) phosphorylation of Akt and serine(1177) phosphorylation of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) increased in myocardium, whilst expression of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) decreased. However, the expression of HIF-1α and VEGF were increased in I(30 min)R(6 h), but decreased to normal level in I(30 min)R(24 h), while treatment with l-THP (20 mg/kg b.w.) enhanced the levels of these two genes in I(30 min)R(24 h). Production of NO in myocardium and plasma, activity of myeloperoxidase (MPO) in plasma and the expression of tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in myocardium were decreased by l-THP. TUNEL assay revealed that l-THP (20 mg/kg b.w.) reduced apoptosis in myocardium. Thus, we show that l-THP activates the PI3K/Akt/eNOS/NO pathway and increases expression of HIF-1α and VEGF, whilst depressing iNOS-derived NO production in myocardium. This effect may decrease the accumulation of inflammatory factors, including TNF-α and MPO, and lessen the extent of apoptosis, therefore contributing to the cardioprotective effects of l-THP in myocardial ischaemia-reperfusion injury.

Cucuma Longa extract Tumeric 95:1

Curcuma (turmeric)

Curcumin is a naturally occurring yellow pigment derived from turmeric (Curcuma longa), a flowering plant of the ginger family. It has traditionally been used as a coloring and flavoring spice in food products. Curcumin has long been used in both Ayurvedic and Chinese medicines as an anti-inflammatory agent, a treatment for digestive disorders, and to enhance wound healing. Several clinical trials have demonstrated curcumin’s antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antineoplastic effects. Results of a study by Zandi and Karin suggested that curcumin might be efficacious in the treatment of cystic fibrosis because of its anti-inflammatory effect.[121] Curcumin is known to inhibit inflammation by suppressing NF-kB, restricting various activators of NF-kB as well as stemming its expression.

Curcumin has also been suggested as a treatment for colitis, chronic neurodegenerative diseases, arthritis, and cancer. In addition, it regulates the activity of several enzymes and cytokines by inhibiting both COX-1 and COX-2. Most studies to date have been performed in animals, but given the centuries of use of curcumin, as well as its now demonstrated activity in the NF-kB, COX-1, and COX-2 inflammatory pathways, it may be considered a viable natural alternative to nonsteroidal agents for the treatment of inflammation.

The usual dosage of standardized turmeric powder is 400–600 mg taken three times per day.[13] Side effects are few, but with extended use, this agent can cause stomach upset, and in extreme cases gastric ulcers may occur at very high doses. Caution should be used if the patient is taking anticoagulant medications or high doses of nonsteroidal drugs. Studies have shown that curcumin may be used in combination with lower doses of nonsteroidal medications

Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum):- Contains significant amounts of mucilage, which helps sooth inflamed or irritated membranes throughout the body. It also has expectorant properties and helps loosen and eliminate mucous from the respiratory tract.

Garlic (Allium sativum) :- Is one of the most popular herbs and one of the most versatile healing herbs. Garlic is very useful to treat bronchitis, colds and coughs. The chinese claim that garlic has anti viral effects and that it can increase resistance to certain diseases. Garlic is safe to use in moderate daily doses.

Ginseng used in the TopLine helps to increase mental alertness. The several hormone-like substances in this herb are thought to account for its simultaneously sedative and stimulating effect on the central nervous system.

Experiments since 1948 indicate that ginseng improve concentration and endurance.

References: Philpott, W., pamphlet on Selective Amino Acid Deficiencies, Klaire Laboratories, California, Agricultural Biology and Chemistry, Vol.46, No.10, p2491,1982.

Psychopharmacology Bulletin No.18, pp7-18, 1982

Hops Powder – (Humulus lupulus) – Active constituents are volatile oil (1%) containing humulen, myrcene, and farnesene. Also resin (10%), bitter principles and tannins (5%). Is a sedative, hypnotic, anaphrodisiac, antiseptic.

Kelp:- A gentle metabolic stimulant, nutritive, thyroid restorative and alterative.

Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza glabra):- The demulcent, soothing properties of licorice are prescribed for alleviating respiratory, digestive and urinary tract infections. It has anti-inflammatory effects, reducing gastric acid secretions and promotes healing of ulcers. It has been long used as a remedy for coughs and skin diseases caused by allergies.

Marigold (Calendula officinalis):- Is an excellent remedy for inflamed skin and extremely beneficial for the overall the health of the skin.

Marshmallow (Althaea officinals):- Soothes irritated tissue, particularly mucous membranes, skin. The soothing, slippery qualities makes marshmallow excellent for treating any anti-inflammatory conditions, including gastrointestinal disorders such as ulcers, colitis or acid stomach and respiratory problems such as bronchitis, sore throats and coughs. It has gentle diuretic properties which help for releving urinary tract infections

Passion Flower – (Passiflora incarnata) – Active constituents are indole alkaloids (0.1%), including harmine, harmaline, and Harman. Also flavonoids, steroidal substances, cyanogenic glycosides and saponins. It is a sedative, antispasmodic, narcotic.

Peppermint (Menta piperita):- is very effective as a digestive aid and to relive coughs, cold and fevers. Peppermint also has a decongestive effect and can be helpful as part of a worming program. Peppermint is considered a harmless herb so can be used on a daily basis.

Red Clover (Trifolium pratense):- Has long been used as a cleanser and detoxification formula. It is also considered a gentle but effective blood purifier, cleansing not only the blood but also the lymphatic system. Red clover also has a soothing effect and because of its properties is very effective in the treatment of various skin conditions.

Rosehip Extract - an evidence based herbal medicine for inflammation and arthritis. Cohen M. Source: School of Health Sciences, RMIT University, Victoria.


BACKGROUND: Rosehips - which contain a particular type of galactolipid - have a specific anti-inflammatory action. A standardised rosehip powder has been developed to maximise the retention of phytochemicals. This powder has demonstrated antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity as well as clinical benefits in conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.


To examine the evidence suggesting that standardised rosehip powder may be a viable replacement or supplement for conventional therapies used in inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.


A meta-analysis of three randomised controlled trials involving 287 patients with a median treatment period of 3 months reported that treatment with standardised rosehip powder consistently reduced pain scores and that patients allocated to rosehip powder were twice as likely to respond to rosehip compared to placebo. In contrast to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and aspirin, rosehip has antiinflammatory actions that do not have ulcerogenic effects and do not inhibit platelets nor influence the coagulation cascade or fibrinolysis.

Rose hip and its constituent galactolipids confer cartilage protection by modulating cytokine, and chemokine expression.

Schwager J, Hoeller U, Wolfram S, Richard N.

Source: DSM Nutritional Products Ltd, Department of Human Nutrition & Health, PO Box 2676, CH-4002 Basel, Switzerland.

RHP and GLGPG attenuate inflammatory responses in different cellular systems (macrophages, PBLs and chondrocytes). The effects on cytokine production and MMP expression indicate that RHP and its constituent GLGPG down-regulate catabolic processes associated with osteoarthritis (OA) or rheumatoid arthritis (RA). These data provide a molecular and biochemical basis for cartilage protection provided by RHP

Rue ( Ruta graveolens):- This plant has a anti-spasmodic action. It may be used to relax smooth muscles, especially in the digestive system where it will ease griping and bowel tension. It also increases peripheral circulation and lowers elevated blood pressure.

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris):- Is rich in essential oils that provide potent antimicrobial, antispasmodic, expectorant and diaphoretic properties. It has been used as an antiseptic and for alleviating coughs.

Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi):- is has a urinary antiseptic action, diuretic action and astringent. Because the leaves are the only part of the plant used this herb can cause discolouration of the urine. Arbutin and methylarbutin undergo hydrolysis to hyropuinone which exerts its antiseptic effects in the urinary tract.


L-Tyrosine – and amino acid, is a major precursor of both thyroid and adrenal cortical hormones, (adrenaline, dopamine and noradrenaline) which also regulates blood pressure and improves both mental and physical performance. L-Tyrosine is not an essential amino acid.

L-Arginine – amino acid, has a known and proven ability to promote growth hormone production. Muscle building is enhanced by its supplementation, and the stimulation of growth hormone improves immune response, allowing your horses’ bodies to repair itself more effectively. In turn, the release of extra growth hormones can lead to the metabolism of stored fat and the building up and tone of muscle tissue. This Essential Amino Acid during the growth period, can subsequently be manufactured by the body. It is synthesized from citrulline in a reaction involving apartic and glutamic acids. It is the immediate precursor of Orthinine and urea, and as such is a vital part of the urea cycle in the liver, which is the major route of detoxification and elimination of urea. Proteins such as collagen and elastin and vital substances such as haemoglobin, insulin and glucagon, all involve arginine’s presence. 80% of the male seminal fluid is made of arginine. Williams reports that whilst not an EAA in adults, it may be required in the diet by certain individuals, and that idiopathic hypospermia has been successfully treated with 8grams of arginine administered daily. Williams states: ‘It seems reasonable to suppose that certain individuals would be found who would have partial genetic blocks which would make the production of arginine from other amino acids difficult.’ Such an individual might have ‘idiopathic hyposmermia’ for this reason (as well as others) and hence, for normal functions, may be said to require arginine. Borrmann reports that arginine is useful in cases of sterility, and that it acts as a detoxifying agent.

According to Philpott arginine is noted for its support of the immune system. The suggested usefulness of arginine in male sterility is mirrored in experiments conducted to assess the effects of arginine deficiency in female rats. Sexual maturity was delayed in arginine deficient rats. Varying grades of arginine deficient diets were fed to groups of rats, and the effects were monitored. Those on a diet of 56% normal arginine reached pubity at the correct time, but ovarian weight and first ovulation rates were low, compared with rats on a higher level of arginine.

A recent controversial application for arginine has been promoted by a number of American researchers. Basing their recommendation on arginine’s known ability to promote growth hormone production, authors Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw and Earl Mindell suggest that weight reduction and muscle building can be enhanced by its supplementation .

L-Tryptophan – It has been found through studies with both animals and humans that L-Tryptophan administered any time of the day is an effective hypnotic. Further more it has been found that it significantly reduces the amount of time it takes to fall asleep without affecting the various stages of sleep. Finally it has been found that L-Tryptophan produces a more relaxed waking state. L-Tryptophan effects neurotransmitter function and is converted to 5-hydroxyl-tryptophan by tryptophan hydroxylase, this in turn, converts to serotonin. Anxiety, tension, depression may have a direct link to a lack of serotonin to the brain. L-Tryptophan is joined by the compatible vitamins, B6 (essential for tryptophan conversion) and B3, (which help to stimulate serotonin release from the brain).>

Serotonin has been widely promoted as a sleep inducing agent. Its precursor tryptophan was researched in this regard by Dr. E. Hartmann of Boston State Hospital. He reported, ‘In our studies we found that a dose of one gram of tryptophan will cut down the time it takes to fall asleep from twenty to ten minutes. Its great advantage is that not only do you get to sleep sooner, but you do so without distortions in sleep patterns that are produced by most sleeping pills”.

Goldberg and Kauffman state that they replicated Hartmann’s results and found that tryptophan did not in any way depress the central nervous system but ‘simply allowed’ the body to do what it normally does under ideal conditions.

Phenylalanine: an amino acid that is involved in a number of biochemical processors related to the brain synthesis of various neuro-transmitters, dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine. It has been shown to inhibit the breakdown of opiate-like substances called enkephalins in the brain. It helps chronic pain. It has been shown as having an analgesic as well as anti-inflammatory effects.

Copyright© 2002 Thorne Research, Inc. All rights reserved. Alternative Medicine Review Monographs


Phenylalanine is a biologically essential amino acid that acts as a precursor to tyrosine and the catecholamines (epinephrine, norepinephrine, dopamine, and tyramine), and is a constituent of many central nervous system neuropeptides. Normal dietary levels of phenylalanine are approximately 1-2 grams daily.1 As a clinically important amino acid, phenylalanine has been used to treat endogenous depression2 and attention deficit disorder,3 and as a potentiator of opiate analgesia in chronic pain.4



not needed for tissue synthesis is converted to tyrosine via phenyl-alanine hydroxylase, an oxygenase enzyme that requires the presence

of oxygen and tetrahydrobiopterin(part of the folic acid molecule). The reaction is irreversible, making phenylalanine an essential amino acid and tyrosine a non-essential one.1 The conversion of phenylalanine to tyrosine is an efficient process; over 95 percent of ingested phenylalanine is converted to tyrosine.1 When

given in a fasting state, phenylalanine can supply 70 percent of the tyrosine appearing in the plasma.5 Phenylalanine is a precursor to the catecholamines and is also present in several active brain neuropeptides, including somatostatin, vasopressin, melanotropin, ACTH, substance P, enkephalin, angiotensin II, and cholecystokinin.6 In phenylkentonuria (PKU), an inborn error of metabolism, either phenylalanine hydroxylase or the cofactor tetrahydrobiopterin are absent. This prevents the production of tyrosine, depresses levels of serotonin in the plasma, and elevates blood and urine levels of phenylalanine.7 The metabolites of phenylalanine are believed to be responsible for the symptoms of altered mental capacity in children with PKU. Those with untreated PKU have severe retardation and very low IQs. Symptoms include hyperactivity, aggression, convulsions and

tremors, light pigmentation, and abnormal posture or gait patterns. Although severe PKU is usually picked up in infancy, mild PKU may not be diagnosed at an early age.8



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Phenylalanine is the only amino acid besides methionine in which both isomers, the D and L-forms, are equally absorbed, due to efficient enzymatic conversion between the isomers. The synthetic isomer (D- form) appears to be absorbed rapidly in humans and converted into the L-form.9

Mechanisms of Action

A metabolic end-product of phenylalanine, phenylethylamine (PEA), is metabolized by monoamine oxidase type B to phenylacetic acid (PAA).10 Tricyclic antidepressants and MAO inhibitors increase PEA levels in the brain.11 PEA is believed to have amphetamine-like properties, and urine levels have been found to be reduced in patients with depression.12 Using it as a diagnostic tool, Sabelli found significantly lower levels of PEA in plasma and urine in depressed subjects, compared with normal controls. Treatment with phenylalanine improved mood in 78 percent of depressed subjects.12 Phenylalanine has been shown to inhibit enkephalinase and increase levels of metenkephalin in the brain, producing opiate-mediated analgesia.13 Enkephalinase-inhibitors are unique analgesia-producing agents that do not show tolerance or dependence. No signs of withdrawal are evident in animal studies when large doses (250-400 mg per kg) are used for long periods of time.13

Clinical Indications

Endogenous Depression

Multiple studies indicate a possible role for DL-phenylalanine in the treatment of depression. In an open, uncontrolled trial, 75-200 mg of DL-phenylalanine was administered to 20 patients suffering from endogenous depression. Assessment tools included psychometric testing, including the Hamilton Depression Scale, and psychiatric assessment. At the end of the trial (20 days), 60 percent of patients were asymptomatic and 20 percent were significantly improved and able to be discharged from care.14 Other small trials with doses of 50-200 mg DL-phenylalanine reported significant symptom improvement within 13-15 days. Unfortunately, these studies lacked objective diagnostic criteria or depression rating scales.15,16 In a large trial, 455 patients with depression were given up to 400 mg per day of D-phenylalanine for 2-6 months. Individuals with a diagnosis of endogenous depression showed the most improvement; after 15 days, 73 percent were asymptomatic and 23 percent had significant improvement. In a group of patients with reactive depression,

53 percent recovered and 23 percent had significant improvement of their symptoms. There was no significant effect on patients who had been diagnosed with depression after age 50.2

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In two double-blind studies comparing equal doses of imipramine to either 100 mg D phenylalanine or 150-200 mg DL-phenylalanine, improvement in psychometric testing and clinical improvement after 30 days were similar, with the majority of patients improving on either therapy.2,17 There are many unanswered questions about the use of phenylalanine in depression.

One study using 600 mg D-phenylalanine for one month in 10 depressed individuals had no effect.18 It is suggested this and other early studies used inadequate dosage levels, and that up to 6 grams DL-phenylalanine may be necessary to normalize PEA levels in treating endogenous depression.19

A more recent study attempted using an individualized dosing system of L phenylalanine with a steady dose of 100 mg pyridoxine in 40 patients with either unipolar or bipolar depression.

12 The authors found maximum dosing levels for symptom alleviation were as high

as 14 grams L-phenylalanine daily. In this trial, patients were given 500 mg twice daily as a baseline dose, which was increased by 500 mg daily until therapeutic effects occurred. Complete recovery occurred in 11 patients, and partial recovery in 20. L-phenylalanine reduced suicidal ideation, fatigue, and anhedonia (lack of ability to experience pleasure), and increased self-esteem. Sleep and appetite were not changed, but patients were allowed to continue benzodiazepines

for sleep if needed. An individualized combination trial with 5 mg selegiline (Deprenyl), 100 mg pyridoxine, and 2-6 grams L-phenylalanine was utilized in 10 patients with prior drug-resistant major depressive disorder.20 L-phenylalanine dosages were increased daily as needed for symptom reduction. Nine of 10 patients experienced mood elevation within hours of taking L-phenylalanine,

and six viewed their depression as having terminated within two to three days of

starting the regimen. Global Assessment Scale scores were significantly lowered after three days of treatment and remained low on continued treatment for six weeks.

Chronic Pain

In an open study, 78 chronic pain patients were given 750-1,000 mg D-phenylalanine daily. Responses occurred in 50 percent of the study population after one week.4 In a double-blind, crossover study, 21 patients with chronic intractable pain were given 250 mg D-phenylalanine per day for two weeks; improvement was evident in 30 percent.21 A small, open study of ten patients with lumbosacral pain receiving 1,000 mg D-phenylalanine resulted in significant

improvements in pain relief and analgesic use.22 D-phenylalanine has also been used to potentiate acupuncture anesthesia, both in those who were non-responsive and to raise pain thresholds in those who were already responding.

The doses used ranged between 2-4 grams.4,23


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  2. Heller B. Pharmacological and clinical effects of DL-phenylalanine in the treatment of depression and Parkinson’s disease. In: Mosnaim AD, Wolfe ME, eds. Modern Pharmacology-Toxicology, Noncatecholic
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  5. Moldawer LL, Kawamura I, Bistrian BR, Blackburn GL. The contribution of phenylalanine to tyrosine metabolism in vivo. Studies in the post-absorptive and phenylalanine-loaded rat. Biochem J 1983;210:811-817.
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  7. Guroff G. Effects of inborn errors of metabolism on the nutrition of the brain. In: Wurtmann RJ, Wurtmann JJ, eds. Nutrition and the Brain. New York, NY: Raven Press; 1979:29-68.
  8. Braverman E. The Healing Nutrients Within. New Canaan, CT: Keats Publishing; 1997:38.
  9. Lehmann WD, Theobald N, Fischer R, Heinrich, HC. Stereospecificity of phenylalanine plasma kinetics and hydroxylation in man following oral application of a stable isotope-labelled pseudo-racemic mixture of L- and D-phenylalanine. Clin Chim Acta 1983;128:181-198.
  10. IYang H, Neff NH. Monoamine oxidase: A natural substrate for type B enzyme. Fed Proc 1973;32:797.
  11. Sabelli HC, Mosnaim AD. Phenylethylamine hypothesis of affective behavior. Am J Psychiatry 1974;131:695-699.
  12. Sabelli HC, Fawcett J, Gusovsky F, et al. Clinical studies on the phenylethylamine hypothesis of affective disorder: urine and blood phenylacetic acid and phenylalanine dietary supplements. J Clin Psychiatry
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    Human Pathology and Therapy. New York, NY: Raven Press; 1983:171-187.
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  22. Godfraind JM, Plaghi L, De Nayer J. A comparative study on the effects of D-phenylalanine, lysozyme and zimelidine in human lumbosacral arachno-epiduritis. A chronic pain state. In: Bromm B, ed. Pain
    Measurement in Man: Neurophysiological Correlates of Pain. New York, NY: Elsevier; 1984:501-511.
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  24. Nutt JG, Woodward WR, Hammerstad JP, et al. The “on-off” phenomenon in Parkinson’s disease. Relation to levodopa absorption and transport. N Engl J Med 1984;310:483-488.
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Brewers Yeast:- Is an excellent source of B1, B2, B6, biotin and folic acid as well as some minerals and trace minerals, especially chromium and selenium. It also contains 8-10% nucleic acids which may have an immune-enhancing effect. Saccharomyces cerevisiae can have a protective effect from the potential risk of Mycotoxins. Prathapkumar Halady Shetty Lene Jespersen Department of Food Science, Food Microbiology, the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Rolighedsvej 30, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark

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