BACTEREMIA refers to the presence of
bacteria in the blood.
BACTERICIDAL is an agent which is
destructive to, or which destroys bacteria.
BACTERIOSTATIC is that which inhibits or
retards the growth of bacteria.
BACTERIUM is a general term for any
unicellular prokaryotic microorganism that commonly multiplies by cell division
(fission) and which is typically contained within a cell wall. It may or may
not be motile, parasitic or pathogenic. The plural form of the word is
BALD: Comb free.
BALD: Folically challenged.
BALSAM is an agent which may be used to
soothe or heal. It is a resinous liquid obtained from the fluid of trees.
BARBALOIN is an anthraglycoside, and
is the glucoside of aloe emodin. Like aloe emodin, barbaloin is cathartic;
however, unlike aloe emodin which acts by irritating the intestines, barbaloin
is absorbed into the bloodstream and stimulates the appropriate nerves near the
bowels to cause the cathartic action.
BENZALDEHYDE is a volatile oil that
may be synthesized artificially or isolated from bitter almonds. It is a
narcotic at high concentrations and may be fatal if ingested in excessive
quantities. Benzaldehyde is used in making dyes and also as a flavoring
BENTONICINE is an alkaloid found in
horehound, yarrow, and other plants.
BERIBERI is a disease associated with
malnutrition, specifically a deficiency of vitamin B-1. It is characterized by
polyneuritis, cardiac pathology and edema.
BETAINE is an amine found in licorice
root, mints, and other plants. The hydrochloric salt of betaine is used in
organic synthesis and in solders and other products. Betaine hydrochloride is
also used therapeutically as a gastric acidifier and as an agent which corrects
the fatty liver caused by choline deficiency.
BETONICINE is an alkaloid found in
horehound, yarrow, and other plants.
BILE is a thick, sticky fluid
secreted by the liver via the bile duct into the small intestine where it aids
in the emulsification of fats, increases peristalsis and restores putrefaction.
It contains sodium glycocholate and sodium taurocholate, cholesterol,
biliverain and bilirubin, mucus, fat, lecithin cells and cellular debris.
Normally the ejection of bile only occurs during duodenal digestion. Bile is
both an antiseptic and a purgative. The normal adult secretes about 800 to
1,000 milliliters daily BILIARY COLIC is an acute abdominal pain due to
the passage of a gallstone through the bile duct (called also gallstone or
hepatitic colic and cholecysalgia).
BILIRUBIN is an orange colored bile
pigment formed by the breakdown of heme pigments mainly from
reticuloendothelial cells. Bilirubin is carried by the blood to the liver where
it is changed chemically and excreted in the bile through the duodenum. High
concentrations may result in jaundice.
BIOFLAVONOIDS , formerly termed
vitamin P, are water soluble and are composed of substances which often appear
in fruit and vegetables as companions to vitamin C. The bioflavonoids are
citrin, hesperidin, rutin, flavones and flavonols. Bioflavonoids are essential
for the proper absorption and use of vitamin C. They assist vitamin C in
keeping collagen in healthy condition, and are vital in their ability to
increase the strength of the capillaries and to regulate permeability. These
actions help prevent ruptures in the capillaries and connective tissues, and
build a protective barrier against infection. Bioflavonoids are beneficial in
the treatment of hypertension, respiratory infections, hemorrhoids, varicose
veins, hemorrhaging, bleeding gums, eczema, psoriasis, cirrhosis of the liver,
retinal hemorrhages, radiation sickness, coronary thrombosis, and
BIRTH CONTROL PILLS: A labor saving
BISMUTH is a crystalline, trivalent
earth element with a reddish appearance. Its salts have been used as an
astringent, antiseptic, sedative, and in treating diarrhea and syphilis. Since
the introduction of antibiotics, treatment with bismuth has declined.
BLACK COHOSH is a perennial plant
native to North America. It grows in rich, open woods and hillsides from Maine
and Ontario to the southern United States. The stem is smooth and furrowed, and
grows from three to nine feet in height. The leaves are ternate, then pinnate,
and are irregularly shaped. There are two to five leaflets which are egg-shaped
or oblong, and irregularly toothed and cut. Small white or yellow flowers grow
in long racemes from June to August. The medicinal part is the rootstock, which
is the underground portion of a stem producing leaves from its upper surface
and roots from its lower surface. It is often thick and contains deposits of
reserve food material.
Other common names for this plant are:
Battleweed, Black Snakeroot, Blue Ginseng, Blueberry Bugbane, Bugwort, Cimici
Fuga, Cohosh, Columbine, Rattleroot, Rattleweed, Squawroot, Snakeroot, Rich
For more information see the HERBS section of
the Nutrition Notebook
BLEPHARITIS refers to inflammation of
BLIND: Photonically non-receptive.
BLOOD is the fluid which circulates
through the heart, arteries, capillaries, and veins. It is composed of red
blood cells, white blood cells and blood platelets, and an interstitial fluid
called plasma. It derives its reddish color from the iron within the
Blood functions to provide nutrition and
respiration for tissue located fare from food and air supplies. It also
transports waste from the tissues to the excretory organs. Blood provides
chemical and thermal regulation to the body and helps in preventing infection
by transporting antibodies.
BLOOD GLUCOSE (blood sugar) refers to
sugar in the form of glucose. The blood sugar level in humans is normally 60 to
100 milligrams per 100 milliliters of blood; it rises after a meal to as much
as 150 milligrams per 100 milliliters of blood, but this may vary
BLOOD PLATELETS (THROMBOCYTES) are
disc-shaped pieces of cytoplasm formed by extrusion from megakaryocytes. They
lack hemoglobin, a nucleus of DNA, but contain active enzymes and mitochondria.
The lifetime of blood platelets ranges from 2 to 10 days; they are then
destroyed in the spleen. There are about 250,000 to 500,000 blood platelets per
cubic millimeter of blood.
Blood platelet's function is to form blood
clots. When they come in contact with a blood vessel injury, they adhere to the
damaged area, then disintegrate and release a chemical which reacts with the
protein in the plasma. With the aid of certain other blood constituents, such
as fibrinogen, they change into a solid mass called fibrin, which forms the
BLOOD PRESSURE , as popularly used,
is the pressure determined indirectly, existing in the large arteries at the
height of the pulse wave.
When a blood pressure reading is taken, the
systolic over diastolic value is determined. Systolic pressure is primarily
caused by the heartbeat or contraction. The diastolic pressure is taken when
the heart is filling with blood between beats. Blood pressure values vary
appreciably depending on age, sex, and ethnicity. A typical adult reading may
be 120mm Hg over 80mm Hg, state 120 over 80.
BLOOD UREA NITROGEN (BUN) is a test
which indicates renal function, fever, or the presence or parasites.
BONE MEAL is a flour-like substance
consisting of the finely ground bones of cattle. As a good supplemental source
of calcium, bone meal is especially recommended for anyone whose milk intake
must be limited. It also contains phosphorus and the trace minerals copper,
manganese, nickel, and fluoride. Bone meal can usually be given safely in any
dose. The recommended intake of bone meal is three tablets or an equivalent
amount per day.
BREWER'S YEAST is a non-leavening
yeast which can be added to all foods to increase their nutritional value.
Brewer's yeast is one of the best sources of vitamin B-Complex vitamins and
minerals. It contains amino acids, minerals, and vitamins. Brewer's yeast is
high in phosphorus in relation to calcium; therefore, eight ounces of skim milk
or four tablespoons of dry powdered milk should be taken with every tablespoon
of yeast. The recommended supplemental allowance of brewer's yeast is one
Wheat germ and brewer's yeast taken daily
may be helpful in preventing heart trouble. Brewer's yeast may protect against
the toxicity of large doses of vitamin D. It is used to prevent constipation
and is a good source of enzyme-producing agents.
Brewer's yeast is on of the best source of
RNA. It is available in powder, flake, and tablet forms.
BROMELAIN is a proteolytic and
milk-clotting enzyme protease obtained from the juice of the pineapple plant.
Bromelain is used as adjunctive therapy to reduce inflammation and edema, and
to accelerate tissue repair, especially following episiotomy.
BULIMIA is the abnormal and
unhealthful intake of large amounts of food. It is often followed by the use of
laxatives and/or self-induced vomiting.
BURSITIS is an inflammation of a
bursa. A bursa is a pad-like sac or cavity found near areas subject to
friction, i.e. joints, particularly those located between bony prominences and
muscle or tendon. It is lined with synovial membrane and contains