Search Term: " L-Methionine "
L-Methionine: Supports Glutathione Production And More.
October 27, 2022 11:28 AM
L-Methionine is an essential amino acid that cannot be manufactured by the body. It must be obtained through diet or supplementation. L-Methionine supports the production of glutathione, and thereby assists in natural detoxification processes. In the body, L-Methionine can also be converted into SAMe (S-Adenosyl Methionine), a compound that supports healthy joints.* Furthermore, the human body relies on ingested sulfur amino acids, such as L-Methionine, for the synthesis of protein, as well as for biologically active sulfur.*
L-Methionine and Glutathione Production
L-Methionine is required for the production of glutathione, which is a cellular radical scavenger.* This means that it helps to protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.* Free radicals are unstable molecules that can damage cells, and they are one of the main causes of aging.* Glutathione is important for detoxification processes in the liver.* It helps to remove toxins and other harmful substances from the body.*
L-Methionine and SAMe Synthesis
L-Methionine can also be converted into SAMe in the body. SAMe is a compound that is involved in many biochemical reactions, including those that occur in joints.* SAMe is thought to play a role in joint health by supporting healthy cartilage and joint function.* In addition, SAMe has been shown to help with depression and liver health.*
The Importance of Sulfur Amino Acids
Sulfur amino acids such as L-Methionine are important for the synthesis of protein in the body. They are also necessary for the production of biotin, a water soluble vitamin that is involved in energy metabolism. Sulfur amino acids are also involved in a number of other important biological processes.*
L-Methionine is an important amino acid with numerous benefits. It plays a role in detoxification, joint health, protein synthesis, and more. Because the body cannot manufacture this amino acid, it must be obtained through diet or supplementation. Including L-Methionine in your diet can help you maintain good health and vitality.
Hair Growth Vitamins?
December 20, 2012 08:09 PM
Keep your hair from falling out
Hair and beauty is a trendy industry, which doesn't have any fall back and recession. For a little better hair treatment, you might have to double or triple your budget. So, people living upon a non-stretchable financial background often look for remedies those can be taken in home. Hair fall can be due to shortage of few vitamins too. Few of the vitamins those have active effect upon hair fall are discussed below.
Role of several vitamins in hair growth:
B vitamins help in maintaining the surface of the hair strands and can be taken by eating beans and eggs. Biotin promotes hair growth whereas Vitamin A aids to the immune system so that hair strands stay healthy and less prone to brittleness. Vitamin C helps enhances blood circulation to the hair follicles and scalp making the hair roots stronger. It is found in fruits in adequate amount. Vitamin E helps in oxygen uptake to the scalp, nourishing the follicles.
About Hair Force by KAL:
Hair Force by KAL has the exact proportion of ingredients required for healthy hair. In addition to the above mentioned vitamins it has many useful macro and micro elements like zinc, copper, manganese, silica, inositol, L-Methionine, choline, MSM, iron etc.
These are the basic structural components of the biological composition of hair. Vitamin B ingredients like riboflavin, niacin and folic acid control the brittleness of the hair strands. How does Hair Force by KAL work? The minerals and elements provide support to the molecular structure as they are the core building parts of those bio-molecules.
Vitamins keep all desired enzymes and blood circulation to the scalp steady. Few of them also help in tightening the hair follicles. Hair fall is mostly caused by hair brittleness. If all the medicines are taken with time and regular care of the scalp is taken, its guaranteed that significant change in hair fall will appear soon.
Using SAMe for Depression
June 04, 2011 10:15 AM
SAMe, or S-adenosyl-L-Methionine, has been promoted for the treatment of depression and various physical conditions. It is believed to help improve the feeling of well-being and mood, and its use in treating depression is likely connected with that. Several studies have been carried out, administering SAMe both orally and parenterally with promising results. Some that use it believe it more effective than the more common antidepressants, and unlike most of these it has very few side effects and a very quick onset of action: around 2 weeks in comparison to a month for most others.
A typical study of the many carried out involved 30 subjects taking regular antidepressants but still suffering depression. They were given 0.8 grams SAMe for 2 weeks and then 1.6 grams for 4 weeks. Improvement was obtained in 50% cases and complete remission of symptoms in a total of 43% of the subjects. In another test on 28 subjects, the improvement equaled that of prescription antidepressant drugs.
These significant findings render this over the counter supplement (in the USA) worth taking for anybody that has either no effective help from their regular treatment, or would prefer to try a natural biochemical than a synthetic drug for their condition. You are recommended to refer to your doctor, however, if you intend changing your treatment.
L-Carnitine For Health And Wellness
April 16, 2008 03:25 PM
Research continues to mount evidence that l-carnitine can help boost energy and quality of life. Carnitine comes from the Latin word for flesh: caro or carnis. L-carnitine was discovered and isolated from meat in the early 1900s. At that time, scientists thought that l-carnitine played a role in muscle function; this was many years before technology would advance so that this theory could be proved. Today, we know that this amino acid is found mostly in tissue of the body that requires lots of energy such as the heart, skeletal muscles, and liver.
L-carnitine is considered a non-essential amino acid since the body manufactures it from L-Methionine and l-lysine. Depending on one’s diet, the body manufactures most of, not all, the l-carnitine it needs every day. There are circumstances where a rare genetic disease can cause the body to not manufacture its own l-carnitine resulting in a deficiency which can cause secondary diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver, chronic renal failure, diabetes, heart failure or Alzheimer’s disease. Some medications can cause a deficiency as well, check with your doctor about prescriptions.
The primary energy source for the body is long-chain fatty acids. L-carnitine plays an essential role in energy production process. This amino acid transports long-chain fatty acids into the mitochondria, where it is used to produce energy for each cell in the body. l-carnitine then removes the “acyl” group by products out of the mitochondria as they accumulate. Both the transporting in and out of the cells mitochondria is vital for continued muscle function to occur.
Researchers suggest that the limiting factor in high intensity exercise is from the availability of l-carnitine in the muscle tissue. Studies conducted with this amino acid suggest that athletes experience improved performance when supplementing with l-carnitine by reducing post exercise lactate acid levels and improving recovery from exercise stress.
Some research suggests that l-carnitine can help chronic fatigue individuals by shuttling long-chain fatty acids into the mitochondria where the body manufactures energy. The bulk of this research was done on chronic fatigue patients who consumed 2 grams per day of l-carnitine. Additional research was performed on individuals over 100 years of age and the results were these individuals experiences increase physical endurance and improved cognitive activity.
L-carnitine can help cardiovascular conditions including angina, congestive heart failure, and peripheral artery disease. Recent studies showed male fertility improvement when l-carnitine was consumed on a regular basis. Men participating had better sperm motility which increases the changes of one reaching an egg and improving the odds of fertilization.
Research also demonstrated that 1 gram of this amino acid daily over three months can help one reduce weight by improving fat metabolism. This holds consistent with the findings that l-carnitine transports long-chain fatty acids (fat) into cellular mitochondria so it can be burned as energy. With a good diet and exercise plan, reports suggest that even more weight loss can be achieved.
Safety is of particular concern when adding extra supplements to one’s diet such as l-carnitine. Good news, l-carnitine is very safe at 1 – 3 grams each day, even higher doses are safe with no side effects. With the mounting evidence on the benefits of l-carnitine consumption, what is stopping you from adding l-carnitine today to your supplement diet to improve health and wellness?
Mega-Folinic - Bio-Active Form of Folic Acid
January 31, 2007 03:59 PM
TMG Fact Sheet
December 07, 2005 02:13 PM
TMG Fact SheetNeil E. Levin, CCN, DANLA 03/07/05
LIKELY USERS: People with high homocysteine levels; People with risks of developing Alzheimer’s Disease; People needing greater metabolism of fats; People with liver detoxification challenges; People consuming alcohol KEY INGREDIENTS: TMG is composed of three methyl groups attached to a glycine atom. It can “donate” methyl groups.
MAIN PRODUCT FEATURES: TMG is a metabolite of the B vitamin family product called Choline. Choline has 4 methyl groups, TMG has 3 and DMG has 2. These substances plus Folic acid, Vitamin B-12 and SAM-e are all methyl donors. Methyl donors can contribute methyl groups to biological processes such as liver function, detoxification and cellular replication (production of new cells). Methylation protects the kidneys and stimulates production of the fat-transporting molecule l-carnitine.
TMG helps the liver metabolize fats, preventing the accumulation of fats in the liver. It also helps to detoxify chemicals in the liver, while protecting the liver from being damaged by those chemicals.
Methylation with TMG helps to convert the dangerous, inflammatory chemical homocysteine into the amino acid methionine. TMG may lower homocysteine when B-6, B-12 and folic acid cannot.
ADDITIONAL PRODUCT INFORMATION: TMG is also known as Betaine and is a component of Betaine hydrochloride (Betaine HCl), a stomach acid supplement that is very acidic. But Betaine HCl is not used in the same way as TMG. TMG is not highly acidic and will not supplement low stomach acid.
TMG may be useful for autistic children, along with B-6 and magnesium. It may also be useful in strengthening the body’s immune response against pathogenic bacteria. There is very preliminary evidence that TMG and methyl donors may help against some forms of seizures.
DMG has been used as a sports supplement. TMG is 50% more effective than DMG in any application where the methyl groups are useful. Otherwise, they can used interchangeably.
SERVING SIZE & HOW TO TAKE IT: One serving per day, or up to 6,000 mg., as needed.
COMPLEMENTARY PRODUCTS: SAM-e, Milk Thistle (Silymarin), Dr. Verghese’s Liver Detoxifier & Regenerator, Antioxidants, NAC, Homocysteine Regulators, D-Flame, Detox Support
CAUTIONS: Pregnant and lactating women and people using prescription drugs should consult their physician before taking any dietary supplement.
People with Parkinson’s or taking L-dopa should not use methyl donors like TMG without a physician’s specific approval and supervision. There are no other known drug interactions with TMG.
This information is based on my own knowledge and references, and should not be used as diagnosis, prescription or as a specific product claim. This is not an official publication by any company, nor has this information been screened or approved by the FDA or any private company.
Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. REFERENCES:
Craig SA. Betaine in human nutrition. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 Sep;80(3):539-49. Review. PMID: 15321791
Barak AJ, Tuma DJ. Betaine, metabolic by-product or vital methylating agent? Life Sci 1983;32:771-4 [review].
Benson R, Crowell B, Hill B, et al. The effects of L-dopa on the activity of methionine adenosyltransferase: relevance to L-dopa therapy and tolerance. Neurochem Res 1993;18:325–30.
Chambers ST. Betaines: their significance for bacteria and the renal tract. Clin Sci 1995;88:25-7 [review].
Charlton CG, Crowell B Jr. Parkinson’s disease-like effects of S-adenosyl-L-Methionine: effects of L-dopa. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 1992;43:423–31.
Charlton CG, Mack J. Substantia nigra degeneration and tyrosine hydroxylase depletion caused by excess S-adenosylmethionine in the rat brain. Support for an excess methylation hypothesis for parkinsonism. Mol Neurobiol 1994;9:149–61.
Cheng H, Gomes-Trolin C, Aquilonius SM, et al. Levels of L-Methionine S-adenosyltransferase activity in erythrocytes and concentrations of S-adenosylmethionine and S-adenosylhomocysteine in whole blood of patients with Parkinson’s disease. Exp Neurol 1997;145:580–5.
Crowell BG Jr, Benson R, Shockley D, Charlton CG. S-adenosyl-L-Methionine decreases motor activity in the rat: similarity to Parkinson’s disease-like symptoms. Behav Neural Biol 1993;59:186–93.
Selhub J. Homocysteine metabolism. Annu Rev Nutr 1999;19:217-46 [review].
Brosnan JT, Jacobs RL, Stead LM, Brosnan ME. Methylation demand: a key determinant of homocysteine metabolism. Acta Biochim Pol. 2004;51(2):405-13. Review. PMID: 15218538 Gahl WA, Bernardini I, Chen S, et al. The effect of oral betaine on vertebral body bone density in pyridoxine-non-responsive homocystinuria. J Inherit Metab Dis 1988;11:291-8.
Olthof MR, van Vliet T, Boelsma E, Verhoef P. Low dose betaine supplementation leads to immediate and long term lowering of plasma homocysteine in healthy men and women. J Nutr. 2003 Dec;133(12):4135-8. PMID: 14652361
Olthof MR, Verhoef P. Effects of betaine intake on plasma homocysteine concentrations and consequences for health. Curr Drug Metab. 2005 Feb;6(1):15-22. PMID: 15720203
Schwab U, Torronen A, Toppinen L, Alfthan G, Saarinen M, Aro A, Uusitupa M. Betaine supplementation decreases plasma homocysteine concentrations but does not affect body weight, body composition, or resting energy expenditure in human subjects. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Nov;76(5):961-7. PMID: 12399266
Selhub J. Homocysteine metabolism. Annu Rev Nutr 1999;19:217-46 [review].
van Guldener C, Janssen MJ, de Meer K, et al. Effect of folic acid and betaine on fasting and postmethionine-loading plasma homocysteine and methionine levels in chronic haemodialysis patients. J Intern Med 1999;245:175-83.
Wendel U, Bremer HJ. Betaine in the treatment of homocystinuria due to 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase deficiency. Eur J Pediatr 1984;142:147-50.
Wilcken DE, Wilcken B, Dudman NP, Tyrrell PA. Homocystinuria—the effects of betaine in the treatment of patients not responsive to pyridoxine. N Engl J Med 1983;309:448-53.
Wilcken DE, Dudman NP, Tyrrell PA. Homocystinuria due to cystathionine beta-synthase deficiency--the effects of betaine treatment in pyridoxine-responsive patients. Metabolism. 1985 Dec;34(12):1115-21. PMID: 3934499
Babucke G, Sarre B. Clinical experience with betain citrate. Med Klin 1973;68:1109-13 [in German].
Barak AJ, Beckenhauer HC, Badakhsh S, Tuma DJ. The effect of betaine in reversing alcoholic steatosis. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 1997;21:1100-2.
Barak AJ, Beckenhauer HC, Matti J, Tuma DJ. Dietary betaine promotes generation of hepatic S-adenosylmethioine and protects the liver from ethanol-induced fatty infiltration. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 1993;17:552-5.
Barak AJ, Beckenhauer HC, Tuma DJ. Betaine, ethanol, and the liver: a review. Alcohol 1996;13:395-8 [review]. PMID: 8836329
Freed WJ. Prevention of strychnine-induced seizures and death by the N-methylated glycine derivatives betaine, dimethylglycine and sarcosine. Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 1985 Apr;22(4):641-3. PMID: 2581277
Junnila M, Barak AJ, Beckenhauer HC, Rahko T. Betaine reduces hepatic lipidosis induced by carbon tetrachloride in Sprague-Dawley rats. Vet Hum Toxicol 1998;40:263-6.
Ji C, Kaplowitz N. Betaine decreases hyperhomocysteinemia, endoplasmic reticulum stress, and liver injury in alcohol-fed mice. Gastroenterology. 2003 May;124(5):1488-99. PMID: 12730887
Kettunen H, Tiihonen K, Peuranen S, Saarinen MT, Remus JC. Dietary betaine accumulates in the liver and intestinal tissue and stabilizes the intestinal epithelial structure in healthy and coccidia-infected broiler chicks. Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol. 2001 Nov;130(4):759-69. PMID: 11691612
Kim SK, Kim YC, Kim YC. Effects of singly administered betaine on hepatotoxicity of chloroform in mice. Food Chem Toxicol 1998;36:655-61.
McCarty MF. Co-administration of equimolar doses of betaine may alleviate the hepatotoxic risk associated with niacin therapy. Med Hypotheses. 2000 Sep;55(3):189-94. PMID: 10985907
Murakami T, Nagamura Y, Hirano K. The recovering effect of betaine on carbon tetrachloride-induced liver injury. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol 1998;44:249-55.
Poschl G, Stickel F, Wang XD, Seitz HK. Alcohol and cancer: genetic and nutritional aspects. Proc Nutr Soc. 2004 Feb;63(1):65-71. Review. PMID: 15070439
Semmler F. Treatment of liver diseases, especially of fatty liver with betaine citrate. Ther Ggw 1977;116:2113-24 [in German].
Zapadniuk VI, Panteleimonova TN. [Cholagogic effect of trimethylglycine in normal animals of different ages and in experimental atherosclerosis] Biull Eksp Biol Med. 1987 Jul;104(7):30-2. Russian. PMID: 3620644
Autism & Seizures:
Rimland B. Seizures, Vitamin B6, DMG, and Sudden Speech. Autism Research Review International. 1996;10(2):1.
Roach ES, Carlin L. N,N-dimethylglycine for epilepsy. N Engl J Med. 1982;307:1081-82.
Vitamin B6/DMG. Letters to the Editor, Autism Research Interview International. 1994;8(2):6.
Reap EA, Lawson JW. Stimulation of the immune response by dimethylglycine, a nontoxic metabolite. J Lab Clin Med. Apr1990;115(4):481-6.
Hoorn AJ. Dimethylglycine and chemically related amines tested for mutagenicity under potential nitrosation conditions. Mutat Res. 1989 Apr;222(4):343-50. PMID: 2468082
Research on SAMe....
October 26, 2005 12:49 PM
Two groups of researchers have conducted analyses of trials that utilized SAM-e for mood enhancement. One meta-analysis was published in 1994. The researchers analyzed the efficacy of SAM-e in oral or injection forms based on published trials dated between 1973 and 1992. The authors concluded that there was a significant improvement of 17 to 38% seen in trials of SAM-e compared to placebo response. They state that the efficacy of SAM-e was superior to placebo and its administration caused few side effects.5 A second review was published in 2002. The authors analyzed studies in which SAM-e doses ranged from 200 to 1600 mg daily. They also found a significant effect of SAM-e in comparison to placebo, with an evident rapid onset of effect at enhancing mood.6
Promotes Joint Comfort and Mobility*
As a sulfur donor to connective tissue, SAM-e plays a major role in protecting the integrity of cartilage tissue. An in vitro trial assessed the actions of SAM-e in cultured human articular chondrocytes. At a concentration of 10 micrograms/ml, proteoglycan synthesis and sulfate residue incorporation in chondrocytes was shown to be 60% higher than control levels. Based on these results, it was shown that SAM-e has a positive influence on the growth and health of cartilaginous connective tissue.7
In a double-blind trial with 734 individuals with compromised joint health. SAM-e given orally at a dose of 1200 mg daily for 30 days was shown to significantly promote joint comfort compared to placebo, with a high level of tolerability and low incidence of side effects. The researchers concluded that SAM-e is a highly effective supplement for enhancing joint comfort.8
Another trial evaluated the response of individuals experiencing discomfort in the joints to a regimen of 1200 mg SAM-e for 1 week followed by 800 mg for the second week, and then 400 mg for weeks 3 through 8. This open trial of 20, 641 people showed a strong ability of SAM-e to enhance feelings of comfort within the joints. The treatment was rated as “very good” or “good” in 71% of the participants, with an additional 21% rating the treatment effect as “moderate”.9
In a long-term trial lasting 24 months, SAM-e was given to 108 participants with compromised joint function. Individuals were given 600 mg orally per day for the first two weeks followed by 400 mg daily for the remainder of the trial. Individuals experienced significant enhancements in joint comfort, with dramatic improvements noted after 2-4 weeks of treatment. Improvements continued to 6 months and beyond.10
In addition to the above studies, a review was conducted in 1987 to assess the results of SAM-e supplementation in clinical trials for enhancing joint mobility and function. Over 22,000 individuals had participated in the clinical trials that were the subject of this review. The author concluded from his analysis that SAM-e was shown to be highly efficacious, rivaling or surpassing the effectiveness of other treatments, and also possessing a high level of safety.11 Because of this, SAM-e may be the treatment of choice for enhancing joint function.
Supports Liver Health and Detoxification*
SAM-e supplementation can have profound benefits on liver function. These benefits center around its function as the major methyl donor in the liver, as well as its lipotropic activity. SAM-e also enhances the production of the antioxidant glutathione.
A number of trials have been conducted showing the ability of SAM-e to support liver detoxification functions and enhance liver health in individuals susceptible to toxin-induced liver compromise. SAM-e has the ability to normalize liver function by increasing the activity of enzymes needed to upregulate liver detoxification. These effects are comprehensive and rapid. Dosages used in these studies range from 600 mg to 1600 mg daily for 2 months to two years.12,13,14 In these trials, significant benefits of SAM-e supplementation were seen over placebo.
SAM-e has an excellent safety profile and is considered well-suited for long term use based on multiple clinical trials. Individuals diagnosed with manic depression should avoid SAM-e supplementation, as it may aggravate the manic phase *This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
1. Agnoli A, Andreoli V, Casacchia M, Cerbo R. Effect of s-adenosyl-L-Methionine (SAMe) upon depressive symptoms. J Psychiatr Res. 1976;13(1):43-54.
2. De Leo D. S-adenosylmethionine as an antidepressant. Curr Ther Research. 1987;41(6):865-70.
3. Kagan BL, Sultzer DL, Rosenlicht N,Gerner RH. Oral S-adenosylmethionine in depression: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Am J Psychiatry. 1990 May;147(5):591-5.
4.Salmaggi P,Bressa GM,Nicchia G,Coniglio M,La Greca P,Le Grazie C.Doubleblind, placebo-controlled study of S-adenosyl-L-Methionine in depressed postmenopausal women. Psychother Psychosom. 1993;59(1):34-40.
5. Bressa GM. S-adenosyl-L-Methionine (SAMe) as antidepressant: metaanalysis of clinical studies. Acta Neurol Scand Suppl. 1994;154:7-14. 6.Mischoulon D, Fava M. Role of S-adenosyl-L-Methionine in the treatment of depression: a review of the evidence. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Nov;76(5):1158S-61S.
7. Harmand MF, Vilamitjana J,Maloche E, Duphil R, Ducassou D. Effects of Sadenosylmethionine on human articular chondrocyte differentiation. An in vitro study. Am J Med. 1987 Nov 20;83(5A):48-54.
8. Caruso I, . Italian double-blind multicenter study comparing S-adenosylmethionine, naproxen, and placebo in the treatment of degenerative joint disease. Am J Med. 1987 Nov 20;83(5A):66-71.
9. Berger R, Nowak H. A new medical approach to the treatment of osteoarthritis. Report of an open phase IV study with ademetionine (Gumbaral). Am J Med. 1987 Nov 20;83(5A):84-8.
10. Konig B. A long-term (two years) clinical trial with S-adenosylmethionine for the treatment of osteoarthritis. Am J Med. 1987 Nov 20;83(5A):89-94.
11. di Padova C. S-adenosylmethionine in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Review of the clinical studies. Am J Med. 1987 Nov 20;83(5A):60-5.
12. Frezza M, et al. S-adenosylmethionine counteracts oral contraceptive hepatotoxicity in women. Am J Med Sci. 1987; 293(4):234-238.
13. Frezza M, Surrenti C, Manzillo G, Fiaccadori F, Bortolini M, Di Padova C. Oral S-adenosylmethionine in the symptomatic treatment of intrahepatic cholestasis. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Gastroenterology. 1990 Jul;99(1):211-5.
14. Mato JM, et al. S-adenosylmethionine in alcoholic liver cirrhosis: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, multicenter clinical trial. J Hepatol. 1999 Jun;30(6):1081-9.
June 13, 2005 01:18 PM
by Cal Orey Energy Times, August 2, 1999
Depression plagues the creative and the mundane. The disparate desperate driven to distress by depression include painters, poets, actors and musicians as well as truck drivers, clerks, electricians and physicists. The victim list encompasses Vincent van Gogh, Emily Dickinson, Audrey Hepburn, Virginia Woolf and Ludwig von Beethoven, as well as millions of other sharers of melancholy misery.
More than 17 million American men and women experience depression in one form or another every year, according to the National Mental Health Association (NMHA) in Alexandria, Virginia. This includes the deeply destructive major, or clinical, depression, the wide mood swings of bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness), and dysthymia, a milder, long-lasting form of emotional suffering.
Twice as Many Women In the depression scenario, women suffer twice as much: Two times as many women as men endure clinical depression, reports the NMHA. The mood-deteriorating effects of the hormonal disruptions women are heir to may be partly to blame.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about one of 10 Americans wades through at least one depressive swamp sometime during his or her life.
The good news: Research shows that diet and lifestyle can lower your risk of depression.
Birth of the Blues
Nowadays, mounting evidence suggests that depression may result more from physiological factors than psychological woes.
Some of the hidden reasons why you may be depressed include: nutritional deficiencies, exacerbated by overdosing on too much caffeine, sugar, alcohol and high fat foods; allergies; anxiety and chronic stress; and a chemical imbalance in the brain's gray matter. According to the NMHA, people with depression often possess too little or too large a quantity of the neurotransmitters norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine. Changes in levels of these brain chemicals may cause, or contribute to, clinical depression.
The NMHA also reports that an imbalance of melatonin, a chemical made by the body's pineal gland (located at the base of the brain), contributes to a form of wintertime depression called seasonal affective disorder (SAD). This hormone is made at increased levels in the dark. Therefore, the body may oversupply this hormone during winter's shortened daylight hours.
Since the B vitamins are often involved in the production of energy, and a large component of depression may encompass the inability to get out of bed and deal with the world, experts believe that at least some of the signs of depression are linked to B deficiencies. For instance, studies cited in the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine (Prima) by Michael Murray, ND and Joseph Pizzorno, ND, demonstrate that folate deficiency and lack of vitamin B12 can compromise mental health (Drugs 45, 1993: 623-36; Lancet 336, 1990: 392-5).
Inositol: This vitamin is also part of the B vitamin complex, and it, too, has shown its ability to lift spirits. Research work in Israel shows that daily inositol given to 28 depressed patients for four weeks produced an overall positive effect. (Eur Neuropsychopharmacol 7:2, May 1997: 147-55). Inositol is found in whole, unprocessed grains, citrus fruits (except lemons) and brewer's yeast.
NADH: Allan Magaziner, DO, in his book The Idiot's Complete Guide To Living Longer & Healthier (Alpha), reports that brain energizing NADH, a metabolite of vitamin B3, enhances the production of the key neurotransmitters dopamine, noradrenaline and serotonin. "In a recent clinical trial," he claims, "nearly all patients given NADH for depression reported improvement in their symptoms and the absence of side effects or adverse reactions."
Another substance winning the spotlight for its effect on mood is SAM-e: S-adenosylmethionine. In New York on February 24, a symposium coordinated by the American Health Foundation met to hear researchers present information from studies of SAM-e's ability to possibly ease depression.
"SAM-e is a natural product. You and I have it but as people age it declines in production in the body. And that's why we believe supplementation in older people is a beneficial means of bringing that back up and helping people that have depression," said the lead symposium researcher, John H. Weisburger, PhD, MD, Director Emeritus, American Health Foundation in Valhalla, New York.
Another researcher, Teodoro Bottiglieri, PhD, Associate Professor of Biomedical Studies and Neurology, Director of Neuropharmacology at Baylor University reported: "SAM-e has been shown to enhance brain dopamine and serotonin neurotransmitter metabolism and receptor function. It may also aid in the repair of myelin that surrounds nerve cells. These mechanisms are likely to be responsible for the antidepressant effect of SAM-e."
(Bottiglieri is co-author with Richard Brown, MD, and Carol Colman of Stop Depression Now, a report on the powers of SAM-e just published by G.P. Putnam's Sons.)
SAM-e was first touted as an antidepressant in Italy in 1973. It's been reported that nearly 40 clinical trials demonstrate its beneficial effects as a natural antidepressant.
For instance, an analysis of more than 1000 people suffering depression showed that the effect of antidepressants in patients taking SAM-e was 17% to 38% better than dummy preparations. Conventional antidepressants show a 20% effectiveness rate (Bressa G. Acta Neurol Scand S154, 1994: 7-14).
5-HTP: Another popular supplement to boost mood and relieve depression is hydroxytryptophan. "This medication is actually a brain chemical that is metabolized from tryptophan into serotonin," says Magaziner. And since low serotonin levels have been linked with depression, and certain prescribed medications may up serotonin levels, 5-HTP is in demand.
"One of the more impressive studies supporting the efficacy of 5-HTP for depression evaluated 100 people who had previously found conventional antidepressant therapy to be inadequate. Forty-three of these folks reported a complete recovery, and eight showed significant improvement," reports Magaziner. Not only has 5-HTP been shown to work slightly better than drugs known as SSRIs (these include Prozac), he adds, it has fewer side effects than standard antidepressants, too. DHEA: Medical experts also believe that levels of the hormone DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) may influence mood. Ray Sahelian, MD, in his book All About DHEA (Avery) reports an interesting study conducted by Dr. Owen Wolkowitz of the Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco. A group of six depressed middle-aged and elderly individuals who took DHEA found that within a month they had better memory and mood. (Biological Psychiatry 41, 1997: 311-18.) "In addition," adds Sahelian, "other studies have also found that DHEA increases energy levels and a sense of well being." But follow package directions: Some people complain of greater irritability and overstimulation with DHEA, when they take large amounts.
St. John's wort: still the most touted natural therapy for defeating depression. In Europe, 23 clinical studies, reviewed in the August 3, 1996 British Medical Journal, found that this herb, also known as Hypericum perforatum, can be helpful in alleviating cases of mild to moderate depression. The work, which included 757 patients, has shown that hypericum produced fewer side effects than conventional anti-depressants.
Although experts have never satisfactorily explained exactly how St. John's wort benefits the brain, some theorize that it boosts serotonin levels. And it can help SAD sufferers.
"In a recent study of 20 people with SAD, four weeks' worth of St. John's wort significantly alleviated feelings of depression. Those people who added full-spectrum lights to the treatment program gained an even greater benefit," notes Dr. Magaziner.
Valerian: Anxiety and stress, which can cause depression and insomnia, may be helped by this herb, says the prolific Dr. Sahelian in his book Kava: The Miracle Antianxiety Herb (St. Martin's). In 101 Medicinal Herbs (Interweave), Steven Foster reports that "Ten controlled clinical studies have been published on valerian...one of which suggests that valerian should be used for two to four weeks before daily mood and sleep patterns improve."
Amino Acid Help
Amino acids, the building blocks of protein, may also help improve mood. (For more on protein, see page 65.) These chemicals are used by the body to construct neurotransmitters, brain chemicals that facilitate mental activity.
For instance, the amino acid L-tyrosine is necessary for the formation of transmitters adrenaline and dopamine. This substance, therefore, is given to alleviate depression and anxiety.
The substance L-dopa which is given to victims of Parkinson's disease is concocted from tyrosine. And several antidepressants alleviate bad moods by boosting the interaction of brain chemicals related to tyrosine.
In addition, since tyrosine is used to make adrenaline, this amino acid may be helpful for folks trying to cope with the mood problems related to stress.
Another amino acid that experts believe useful for better moods, L-Methionine, is used by the body to make choline, a crucial substance for brain function. (Choline goes into the formation of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter.)
Methionine has been given to people suffering from schizophrenia and depression as well as to those with Parkinson's. Methionine plays a number of crucial roles in the brain and body since it helps form other vital proteins.
For those concerned about preserving a positive mood, researchers are positive that smoking worsens depression. A study at the Department of Behavioral Services at the Henry Ford Health System in Michigan found that daily smokers run twice the risk for major depression compared to those who only smoked occasionally.
Unfortunately, the investigators found that not only did smoking seem to lead to depression, depression, in turn, led to more smoking (Archives of General Psychiatry, 2/99).
"Smokers who have depression tend to see their smoking become a daily habit and it may be because they use nicotine to medicate their depressed mood," reported Naomi Breslau, PhD, who headed the research. Over a five year period, the researchers looked at about a thousand young people aged 21 to 30. They found that daily smokers generally start smoking in adolescence, and those who report early depression are three times as likely to eventually become daily smokers.
If you're feeling down, don't give up hope. Although depression can prove to be a depressingly complicated malady, daily, healthy habits can offset its effects. Getting consistent exercise, dousing your cigarettes and turning to herbal and nutritional help to treat mild depression may defeat those blues.
June 11, 2005 05:04 PM
Power Protein by Joanne Gallo Energy Times, August 4, 1999
Chances are, if you've been trying to lose weight, build muscle, or increase your energy levels, then you've been hearing about protein. This essential nutrient has stolen the spotlight of the health industry as the alleged key to vitality and a solid physique.
With books like Protein Power (Bantam) and Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution (Avon) firmly implanted on The New York Times bestseller list, and protein bars and shakes growing in popularity, more people than ever are seeking to tap into the power of protein.
But before you go on an all-out protein-blitz, how can you decide what's best for you?
The Purpose of Protein
No doubt about it, protein performs a variety of roles. First and foremost, it is used to manufacture and repair all of the body's cells and tissues, and forms muscles, skin, bones and hair. Protein makes up the connective tissue that forms the matrix of bones; keratin is a type of protein used to make hair and nails.
It is essential to all metabolic processes; digestive enzymes and metabolism-regulating hormones (such as insulin, which influences blood sugar levels) are all made of protein. This nutrient also intricately takes part in transport functions: Without sufficient protein the body cannot produce adequate hemoglobin, which carries nutrients through the blood. Lipo-proteins are fat-carrying proteins which transport cholesterol through the bloodstream.
Protein helps regulate fluid and electrolyte balance, maintaining proper blood volume. Immunoglobulins and antibodies that ward off diseases are also comprised of protein.
Any protein that you eat that is not utilized for these purposes is stored as fat, although some may be broken down, converted to glucose and burned for energy. This can occur during intensive workouts, or when the body runs out of carbohydrates from the diet or glycogen from its muscle and liver stores.
"Even though the body can depend on the fat it has stored, it still uses muscle protein, unless it is fed protein as food," explain Daniel Gastelu, MS, MFS, and Fred Hatfield, PhD, in their book Dynamic Nutrition for Maximum Performance (Avery). "When dietary circumstances cause the body to use amino acids as a source of energy, it cannot also use these amino acids for building muscle tissue or for performing their other metabolic functions."
One can see why it is so important to eat a sufficient amount of protein daily in food, shakes or bars. Without it, bone tends to break down, the immune system can become impaired, and muscle strength drops as the body uses up muscle protein for energy.
Proteins are built of chains of amino acids, and 20 different kinds of these building blocks are necessary for protein synthesis within the body. Eleven of them can be manufactured by the body through a process called de novo synthesis; these are referred to as non-essential amino acids. The other nine, which must be obtained from the diet, are known as essential amino acids. (Although some amino acids are called "non-essential," in actuality they are vital: The body needs all 20 amino acids to function properly.)
Some of the more familiar non-essential amino acids include: n Carnitine helps remove fat from the bloodstream n Arginine helps burn sugar Essential amino acids include: n L-tryptophan, a precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin, helps create calm moods and sleep patterns n L-lysine, required for the metabolism of fats n L-Methionine a component of SAM-e (a supplement intended to relieve depression and arthritis, see p. 45)
The body forms and destroys protein from amino acids in a constant cycle of synthesis and degradation. You must consume protein regularly to replace the lost amino acids that are oxidized when protein is broken down and used for fuel. The amount of amino acids lost each day depends on what you eat and how much exercise you do.
Athletes vs. Weekend Warriors
Protein intake in the general population is still adequate, notes Gail Butterfield, PhD, RD, director of Sports Nutrition at Stanford University Medical School. "But we're learning that what is true for the general population may not be true for the athletic population," she says. "With heavy training there is greater protein degradation and you need to increase your intake. Thus, protein requirements are higher for athletes than regular people."
Also, if you diet or restrict your eating in any way, you may also not be getting enough protein.
Certainly, if you work out, eating protein is important. Providing four calories of energy per gram, protein keeps blood sugar steady during exercise. After exercise, it helps replenish and maintain stores of glycogen (stored muscle fuel) and decreases the loss of amino acids, as recent research has shown (J Appl Physiol 81 (5), Nov. 1996: 2095-2104). Lab studies in animals show that protein consumed after you run, lift weights, bike, etc..., helps stimulate muscle growth (Jrnl of Nut 127 , June 1997: 1156-1159)
High-protein diets are frequently touted to promote weight loss and increased energy. One of the most influential: the so-called 40-30-30 formula, developed by Barry Sears in his book The Zone: A Dietary Roadmap (HarperCollins), which describes a diet whose calories are 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fat. The rationale: when you eat too many carbohydrates, your body uses these starches for energy instead of burning body fat. A high protein diet is supposed to keep your blood sugar balanced and stimulate hormones that burn body fat instead of carbohydrates for energy.
Other fitness experts such as Sherri Kwasnicki, IDEA International Personal Trainer of the Year of 1998, say that while protein is a necessary component of any diet, extreme high-protein plans aren't necessary for recreational fitness buffs. However, she notes that maintaining muscle mass is the key to aging gracefully, and getting enough protein is critical for that.
Many people today won't eat meat and dairy for ethical reasons, or to avoid the antibiotics and other chemicals in the raising of poultry and cattle. But that doesn't have to prohibit adequate protein intake. All soybean products, including tofu and soymilk, provide complete proteins, which supply ample quantities of all the essential amino acids.
In the past vegetarians were told to combine particular foods to make sure they consumed all the essential amino acids at each meal. (For example, beans with either brown rice, corn, nuts, seeds or wheat forms "complete" protein.) Today, diet experts aren't so picky. Eating a variety of plant-based foods throughout the day is just as effective as combining them at one meal.
Vegans who avoid all animal products should eat two servings at sometime during the day of plant-based protein sources, such as tofu, soy products, legumes, seeds and nuts.
The newest sources of protein are bars and shakes, which are growing steadily in popularity. Protein bars now constitute about 12% of the so-called energy bar market, with sales increasing about 38% per year. These bars generally provide at least 20 grams of protein, including soy and whey protein and calcium caseinate (milk protein). The benefits: bars supply protein along with carbohydrates for energy; protein powders, on the other hand, provide quickly digested, easily absorbed amino acids.
Edmund Burke, PhD, author of Optimal Muscle Recovery (Avery), suggests "If you need extra protein, you may benefit from the convenience of a mixed carbohydrate-protein supplement... choose a supplement that's healthy and low in fat."
Amino acid supplements are also growing in popularity, reported to build muscle and burn fat, or improve mood by boosting brain neurotransmitters. The amino acids glutamine, phenylalanine, tyrosine and 5-HTP (a form of tryptophan) are all used to boost spirits and enhance brain function.
And if you still ponder the merits of those high protein diets, do keep in mind that protein may be better at controlling hunger than carbohydrates or fat since it steadies blood sugar, so it may help you stick to a reduced-calorie plan. But excess protein can't be stored as protein in the body: It is either burned for energy or converted to fat. And carbs are still the body's top energy source, so forgoing too many can leave you tired and sluggish.
Still, with so many vital functions-and a variety of sources to choose from-you can't afford to not explore the benefits of protein.
SAMe - Supports Joint Comfort, Function and Mobility ...
June 06, 2005 08:30 AM
You’ve read about it in the media. Europeans have experienced its health benefits for two decades. Now consumers in the United States have access to a nutrient with groundbreaking potential. SAMe, a natural compound formed in our bodies from the amino acid methionine, is stirring excitement due to its wide-ranging health effects. SAMe plays a critical role in cartilage formation. Dozens of clinical studies have demonstrated that SAMe supports joint comfort, function and mobility in the spine, hips and knees. SAMe has also been found to support a positive outlook. It affects the synthesis and activation of proteins such as mood-boosting neurotransmitters.
Technological advances have made possible the production of stable, bioavailable forms of a natural nutrient with broad-range potential. Source Naturals now offers you the fruits of that technology.
A Multipurpose Nutrient
SAMe, or S-adenosyl L-Methionine, is formed when our bodies combine the amino acid L-Methionine with ATP, the primary energy-carrying molecule in our cells. SAMe is a multipurpose nutrient, which is present in every living cell. Because SAMe is involved in so many vital processes, it is important that our bodies produce sufficient SAMe. However, SAMe levels tend to decline with age, and also can be affected by dietary imbalances. To produce adequate amounts, we need to consume not only methionine-containing protein foods, but also foods rich in vitamins B-6, B-12 and folic acid, which are needed to ensure the synthesis of SAMe. SAMe also is a highly unstable molecule. A lot of scientific research was needed to make it available as a supplement. Source Naturals has studied the research and offers this vital nutrient in a form your body can use.
Methylation is the Key
SAMe is known as a “methyl donor.” This means that it works by giving up a piece of itself (a methyl group consisting of one carbon and three hydrogen atoms) to other molecules. This methylation process affects the synthesis, activation and metabolism of various hormones, neurotransmitters, phospholipids, nucleic acids, proteins and other biological molecules. Methylation plays a part in many critical functions, including the maintenance of cell membranes, the removal of toxic substances from the body and the production of mood-boosting neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin.
Effective Joint Support
SAMe has been used in Europe for two decades for joint support. Dozens of clinical studies have demonstrated that SAMe supports joint comfort, function and mobility in the spine, hips and knees. SAMe is important in a process called transsulfuration. The breakdown of SAMe generates sulfate groups that help maintain joint cartilage. SAMe helps to form proteoglycans, which are used to renew the matrix of cartilage.
Promotes Mental Well-Being
Studies also show that SAMe helps support a positive outlook. Although the mechanism by which SAMe promotes mental well-being is not known, we do know it is able to cross the blood-brain barrier, where it affects the production of mood-boosting neurotransmitters.
Clinically Researched Potency
Source Naturals SAME is offered in the clinically researched potency of 400 mg per suggested daily use (two tablets). The tablets are enteric coated and blister packed to prevent breakdown and inactivation of ingredients. Source Naturals SAME is available in 20-tablet boxes.
Muscle Mass - Reach Your Maximum Muscle Potential
June 04, 2005 09:49 AM
The serious athletes of today know how much it takes to fulfill their competitive goals: careful training, a strong will, and also the right kind of nutrition. Sports science now makes available key nutrients which help assure that strenuous workout regimes will show results. Results that are both nutritionally sound and dramatically visible, without the need for dangerous steroids or chemicals. MUSCLE MASS™ is such a state-of-the-art sports science formula.
THE PURPOSE OF MUSCLE MASS ™ is to help translate distant goals for greater strength and power into quicker, awesome reality. It is the premier formula combining all essential nutrients known to maximize muscle development and optimize strength.
In sum, all these balanced, cutting-edge factors combine to assist you in meeting the challenges you’ve set for your body. Power, endurance, strength, tone, and the winner’s circle are now closer.