Search Term: " neurodegeneraive "
Omega-3 Deficiency Symptoms + 3 Steps to Overcome Them
February 28, 2019 08:47 AM
Omega-3s have a wide variety of benefits for your brain and cardiac health, as well as keeping inflammation in check and hormones in balance, so you definitely shouldn’t let yourself become deficient. Omega-3s are an essential fatty acid, meaning the body cannot produce them on its own. A deficiency can cause inflammation, digestive troubles, and pain in muscles and joints, as well as changes in the appearance of skin and hair. Deficiencies can also cause or worsen ADHD symptoms or depression. A lack of omega-3s can even result in poor brain development in children and neurodegenerative symptoms in adults.
"“Omega-3s” is another name for omega-3 fatty acids. These fats are found in the human body, as well as in certain foods like oily fish. Essential fatty acids are “essential” because the body cannot synthesize them on its own, therefore humans must get these fats from the diet."
Read more: https://draxe.com/omega-3-deficiency/
Study: PQQ (pyrroloquinoline quinone) may prevent and even reverseAlzheimer's
January 04, 2019 08:12 AM
Pyrroloquinoline quinone (PPQ) is a microbe that is derived from plants, and it is showing to have neurological benefits that are associated with the prevention of Alzheimer's progression. This particular microbe is able to reduce inflammation in the brain, which can lead to several neurological conditions. It also helps patients in post-stroke recovery because it is able to reduce the area of the brain that is impacted by stroke activity. Most importantly, it helps in the prevention of Alzheimer's due to how it can neutralize levels of oxidative stress.
"Glutamate is an important chemical in the brain, but too much of it results in excitotoxicity, a risk factor in both stroke and neurodegenerative disease. PQQ protects the brain from overstimulation by glutamate and the resulting death of brain cells."
Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-12-15-ppq-can-prevent-alzheimers.html
Gut microbes play a significant role in the central nervous system digestive health is linked to your risk of neurodegenerative diseases
August 07, 2018 09:53 AM
Neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimers are becoming more and more common in the United States, and pose an increasing risk to aging populations. A recent study has identified gut microbes as one of the causes of these diseases - a huge breakthrough in the field, and one with significant implications for how we view our brain's health. These microbes release chemicals that can change the nature of the brain. It's a finding that shows that caring for our digestive health can be one of the most important steps to preventing diseases like Alzheimers, later on.
"They reached their conclusions after examining gut microbes and changes in mouse models of multiple sclerosis. They discovered the compounds produced by the breakdown of tryptophan cross the blood-brain barrier and activate an inflammatory pathway that can limit neurodegeneration."
Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-07-30-gut-microbes-play-a-significant-role-in-the-central-nervous-system.html
Bitter melon extract found to help treat diabetes with its anti-obesity effects
July 26, 2018 09:09 AM
Bitter melon may be an unusual thing to incorporate into your diet. But, you may want to look into some recipes. It turns out that there is a wealth of study data that shows that bitter melon is a potent health ally, particularly when it comes to individuals who are fighting a losing battle with weight and some of the chronic conditions that go with it.
There's scientific proof attesting to the fact that bitter melon aids the body in balancing its metabolism with lipid intake. It also benefits a syndrome marked by high levels if glucose in the blood and weight gain around the middle. It also tends to dampen the body's accumulation of adipose tissue. So, while it may not be a taste treat, it may be beneficial, nonetheless, to put some bitter melon on your plate.
"Bitter melons may taste unpleasant to some people, but its health benefits cannot be denied."
Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-06-13-bitter-melon-extract-found-to-help-treat-diabetes-with-its-anti-obesity-effects.html
Scientists study the neuroprotective effects of fermented Curcuma longa L. (turmeric)
July 04, 2018 05:54 PM
A recent Kristina University study suggests that fermented turmeric may help protect brain cells from being degraded by inflammation and oxidative stress. The same researchers found that fermented turmeric may also help protect against the impact of the amnesiac compound scopolamine. Researchers subjected scopolamine-treated mice to mazes and inflicted oxidative stress on rat brain cells to test whether fermented turmeric offered any protection. Preliminary results suggest that fermented turmeric could have value as an alternative or complementary treatment for neurodegenerative diseases symptoms.
"It could serve as an alternative or complementary therapy for age-induced neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease."
Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-07-02-scientists-study-neuroprotective-effects-of-fermented-curcuma-longa-turmeric.html
Advantages And Disadvantages Of CBD Oil
July 25, 2017 12:14 PM
There are some advantages and disadvantages of CBD oil. CBD oil is a derivative of cannabis. The origin of this oil is the marijuana plant. It does not intoxicate anyone that uses it. There have been several controversies that have emerged because its parent plant is used for recreational use. But, there are many indications of the health benefits it offers. Marijuana consists of some quantity of CBD. One of the benefits of CBD oil is decreased anxiety.
"CBD oil can help in managing anxiety attacks by changing the response produced by brain receptors towards serotonin."
Read more: http://reportshealthcare.com/advantages-disadvantages-cbd-oil/
CBD and Your Brain
June 14, 2017 12:14 PM
CBD is found in cannabis sativa otherwise known as marijuana and is useful in treating many neurological disorders such as depression, anxiety and even epilepsy. Unlike THC, CBD has no psychoactive effects. CBD has been found to protect brain cells from harm in neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's. Best of all CBD has literally zero side effects! Research shows that CBD has opened many doors leading to a cure for depression and anxiety. CBD has been proven to reduce swelling, pain and inflammation caused by injury and arthritis even when applied topically. CBD may not be a medical cure all but it has been proven to be a very useful tool in the treatment of many medical conditions.
"When various brain injuries from animal models were examined, it was found out that CBD boosted a number of viable brain cells."
Read more: https://www.cashinbis.com/cbd-and-your-brain/
Eat This One Food To Get Rid Of Brain Fog
March 18, 2017 06:44 AM
Omega-3 fatty acids play an important role in our health including anti-inflammation, reducing the risk of chronic diseases, maintaining brain function. ALA, DHA and EPA are 3 types of omega-3s that are most beneficial to our brain such as effects on depressive conditions, post-stroke, neuropathic pain, migraines, neurodegenerative disease and improving cognitive performance. ALA comes from plants. DHA and EPA are found in fatty, cold-water fish and shellfish. A balance of sources from plants and seafood will help you to find the right balance of these essential fatty acids, which is fundamental to prevent inflammation. Make sure to consult with your healthcare provider to find out the amount that is best for your unique condition.
"A well-balanced diet with natural sources of ALA, DHA, and EPA is fundamental to maintaining a healthy ratio that prevents inflammation and promotes long-term health."
Cannabidiol (CBD) Inhibits Cancer Growth According to Medical Researchers, Announces Phillip Fry
March 12, 2017 04:59 AM
More and more, the non-psychoactive marijuana extract called Cannabidiol or CBD is becoming an alternative treatment. Research has existed that pointed to CBD's uses for treating nausea in chemotherapy patients, fighting neurodegenerative diseases and seizures in patients, but the most recent findings could indicate that CBD is more useful than ever imagined. Recent studies have concluded that CBD, which is an extract that doesn't have the psychoactive aspects marijuana is known for, shows significant signs of fighting cancers cells for a number of different types of cancer. The scientific community is publishing a record number of research, much of it pointing to the marijuana extract, CBD, having unknown but possibly lifesaving potential.
"Chemical components of Cannabis, called cannabinoids, activate specific receptors throughout the body to produce pharmaacologic effects"
Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3259779
Researchers identify how inflammation spreads through the brain after injury
March 09, 2017 02:59 PM
Researchers have identified a new mechanism by which inflammation can spread throughout the brain after injury. This mechanism may explain the widespread and long-lasting inflammation that occurs after traumatic brain injury, and may play a role in other neurodegenerative diseases. This new understanding has the potential to transform how brain inflammation is understood, and, ultimately, how it is treated.
"This new understanding has the potential to transform how brain inflammation is understood, and, ultimately, how it is treated."
Running may boost your brain wiring
December 21, 2016 07:59 AM
If you want to boost your brain function, try running. A study conducted at the University of Arizona found that brain scans of runners showed greater cognitive function that in those of people who do not regularly exercise. The areas that were more active in runners were also identified as the areas that deteriorate with older age, so there is the question as to whether or not physical activity will help stave off Alzheimer’s and other cognitive issues later in life.
"Make running your New Year’s resolution if you want to boost your brain function, say scientists who have found that cross country runners have greater connectivity in brain areas linked to planning and decision-making."
Fruits and vegetables may slow ALS
November 16, 2016 01:04 PM
We know we should eat more fruits and vegetables, but it turns out that a diet high in these too foods may also help with diseases like ALS. Studies are showing that the foods we eat play a huge rule in both triggering and the prognosis of the disease. Lunch meats and milk should be avoided, while foods high in fiber and some meats may actually help.
"New research at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health reveals that foods like fruits and vegetables that are high in antioxidant nutrients and carotenoids are associated with better function in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients around the time of diagnosis."
Bulletproof coffee - coconut and butter does improve health
A cup of coffee is a common thing that most of people drink in the morning. However, since many people realized that coconut oil and butter are healthy fats (Axe, 2016), they started replacing cream with them. This coconut and/or butter coffee is known as bulletproof coffee and it is a new trend of healthy morning drink. It has been extremely popular all over the world.
Coconut oil has so many benefits for your body, such as:
· Increases your energy - its ingredient, MCT (Medium Chain Triglycerides), is absorbed by the body and metabolized as fuel more quickly (Tifanny, 2016).
· Improves your immune system - There is a lot of lauric acid in coconut oil that is effective to prevent and cure many viruses (WebMD in Tifanny, 2016).
· Improves brain function – Its fatty acid plays an important role in memory and brain functions (Axe, 2016).
· Promotes heart health – Coconut oil contains good cholesterol that is good for your heart (Axe, 2016).
· Acts as anti-inflammatory – Antioxidant content makes coconut an effective anti-inflammatory food that help reduce arthritis (Axe, 2016).
· Is good for hair and skin – It is able to smoothen and tighten the skin, as well as maintain healthy hair (Axe, 2016).
On the other hand, butter also offers many advantages for your health, such as:
· Prevents and treats many diseases - Omega 3 fatty acids in butter are essential for growth, as well as prevention and treatment of arthritis, coronary artery disease, cancer, inflammation, and high blood pressure (Leonard, 2016).
· Improves your brain, blood circulation, and hormonal system – It helps prevent neurodegenerative and heart diseases, increase energy expenditure, and act as anti-inflammatory (NN, 2014).
· Is good for bones and blood circulation – Butter contains vitamin K that plays an important role in blood clotting and keeping the bones strong (Leonard, 2016).
· Helps with weight loss – It makes you feel full for a longer period and its conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) is an effective aid for losing weight (Leonard, 2016).
· Reduces caffeine sensitivity – Butter fat can protect the stomach from shakes and nausea caused by caffeine (Leonard, 2016).
· Boosts the energy – It provides more sustained energy for the body (Leonard, 2016).
· Accelerates metabolism and digestion – Vitamin A, D, and E contained in butter are easily absorbed by the body and stored in gastrointestinal tract (Axe, 2016).
Based on the facts above, coconut and butter coffee is a healthy drink. However, excessive consumption of this bulletproof coffee is not good. Healthy fats can only function effectively in the body if the amounts taken are mooderate, not more and not less. Moreover, drink this coffee as the replacement of your breakfast is not recommended since it does not have enough essential nutrients (Gunnars, 2016).
What Are Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) And What Herbs Contain Them?
Glycosaminoglycans refers to a linear unbranched polysacharide chain molecule composed of disaccharides repeats with a high negative charge due to the presence of Uronic acid components and sulfate esters with some hydoxyl (OH) groups as part of its structural components. They have varying molecular size and sulfation depending on the tissue they are located on and their state. They function to attract cations and maintain the hydration of the extracellular membrane (E.C.M).
Glycoaminoglycans are classified into different groups based on different categories which include; glycosidic linkages in their structure, type of the sugar moiety, sulphate groups numbers and the location of the sulfate groups. Based on this various classification categories six major groups of GAGs exists, namely; heparin, hyaluronan, dermatan sulfate, heparin sulfate, chondroitin sulfate, and keratan sulfate.
GAGs have a high solvation degree and and are as well highly viscous. This is beneficial to the body in that it helps to cushion and lubricate various connective tissues and body joints respectively. It therefore protects an individual from joint pains due to poor lubrication of the joints causing the bone to slide over each other. They also form the building blocks of proteoglycans which are the major building blocks of the extracellular matrix. Due to this property they are vital in determining the cellular activities such as cell division because the cell division machinery has to attach itself to the extracellular matrix before the division process is initiated. Some body tissues such as the nerve cells and the muscle cells require continuous cell division to replace worn out cells for the normal functioning. This means that structural deformities in the extracellular matrix will hinder the division process to occur and is most likely to lead to some neurodegenerative complexions.
Recent studies have linked GAGs to play a role in the cell biology of cancer.They have been established as the key macromolecules affecting cell properties and functions through interaction with key growth factors or by acting directly as receptor molecules. Through this it has been findings they play a vital role in the cell signaling process thus playing a role in the cancer disease progression.Heparin and heparin sulfate have been indicated through studies to have anti-tumor effects by preventing the process of angiogenesis which is the first step in cancer metastasis.Some have been associated with anti-coagulant properties.
Therefore GAGs are important molecules which play a vital role in protection against various forms of cancers. GAGs aremostly obtained from animal sources. The animal sources include shark fish and ray skeletons. Plants are also sources of GAGs, however their digestion by the human system is not possible. Seaweed is one herb that is rich in GAGs. However as earlier explain the digestion of the sea weed by the animal digestive system is quite a challenge. It is therefore recommended that we eat foods rich in proteins, and carbohydrates which can be used to synthesize GAGs in the body.
In summary, GAGs are heteropolymers which acts as the building blocks of the extracellular matrix in animals. The body has the ability to synthesize GAGs naturally hence nutritional supplement is required for the body to obtain key components necessary for the synthesis.
Coconut Oil for Memory Enhancement
December 27, 2012 12:53 PM
Coconut oil has been widely used for centuries for various purposes. Mainly, it is a cooking ingredient, used for frying and for adding flavor to meals. Aside from this, many nations have different ways of using it as treatment for various illnesses. Countries like Jamaica, Panama, and India believe that ingesting the oil helps prevent contracting any disease and helps in the speedy recovery when sick.
People from the Philippines and Thailand use the oil for massaging to provide relief from painful muscles and joints. Other topical uses are for moisturizing of the skin and for the healthy growth of hair.
Since 2008, new studies have been conducted to test the effects of coconut oil in enhancing the memory and to cure Alzheimer's disease.
MCT (Medium Chain Triglycerides) Benefit:
The most astounding find is the presence of MCT or medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil in high concentration. This MCT creates a string of processes that ultimately helps in curing neurodegenerative diseases.
MCT against Amyloid-Beta
Amyloid-beta is a protein that forms into plaques in the brains. They decrease the efficient functioning of the nerve cells that then causes the decline in memory.
Most drugs prescribed to Alzheimer patients target these plaques, to dissolve them and consequently see an improvement. Studies done on dogs by incorporating MCT in their diets showed that the levels of amyloid-beta has declined, which is a very positive effect. Likewise, energy levels in the brain have gone up among the test subjects.
MCT to Promote Ketone
One cause of Alzheimer's disease is the inability of the brain to metabolize glucose and transform it to energy. As you all know, glucose is the main energy source of the body that provides it the energy it needs to function. This glucose comes from the carbohydrate that comes from food sources. Without this fuel, the brain cells could degenerate. Fortunately, glucose is not the only source of energy for the brain. It can also come from ketones, which are produced from fats in the liver.
However, the liver does not continually produce this. The human body, being smart as it is, only produces ketones when the glucose level drops in order to compensate for the loss of energy source. This is why people who have cognitive disorders often go on a fat and protein diet to trigger the production of ketones, by lowering their intake of carbohydrates. Still, maintaining such a diet for long periods is hard. The good thing is studies have shown that ingesting MCT has increased the level of ketones in the body, regardless of the amount of glucose present in the system. It is believed that MCT is converted to ketone, thus, providing the brain the energy it needs.
MCT and Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Another study done on dogs showed an increased level of omega-3 fatty acids in their brain. Omega-3 fatty acids have many benefits to the body, including improvement of brain function. They support the effective transmission of energy from one neuron to another through the synapses. This consequently makes learning easier, promotes faster reactions, and heightens memory.
Unfortunately, this fatty acid is not produced in the body and people have to rely on food sources, such as fish and nuts. Studies have shown that MCT from coconut oil induces the production of omega-3 from fats that are already present in the body.
What Is Glutathione Good For?
April 14, 2012 08:03 AM
What is Glutathione?
Glutathione (GSH)is a tripeptide derived from non-proteinaceous amino acids. Contains apeptide bond between the group unusual amino of the cysteine group and the carboxylside chain of glutamate. Glutathione, an antioxidant, helps protect cells from reactive species of oxygen such as free radicals and peroxides. Glutathione is nucleophilic at sulfuracceptors and conjugated electrophilic attack poisonous. Groups thiolare maintained in a reduced state to a concentration of about ~ 5 mM in animal cells. Indeed, glutathione reduces any link disulfideformed with in proteins cytoplasmic cysteines by acting as a donor of electrons.In the process, glutathione is converted to its oxidized form glutathione disulfide (GSSG). Glutathione is found almost exclusively in its reduced form, since the enzyme that turns its oxidized form, glutathione reductase,is constitutively active and inducible to oxidative stress.In fact, the ratio of reduced glutathione to oxidized glutathione in cells is often used scientifically as a measure of cellular toxicity. H2O2+ GSSG + 2 ------- 2GSH H2O.
Advantages of the Glutathione
Before discussing the benefits of L-Glutathione, let's first talk a little about the nutrient. Glutathione is an antioxidant enzyme dominant which is soluble in water.It is absorbed mainly in the liver.It helps fight against free radical damage.The free radical damage is harmful relatives. Glutathione is involved in a variety of other functions in the body.
The function of Glutathione - Benefits of Glutathione
Glutathione works in DNA synthesis and repair, protein and prostaglandin synthesis, and amino acid transport.It helps in the metabolism of carcinogens and toxins.Immune system is improved through the use of Glutathione, and contributes to the prevention of cellular oxidative damage, and activation of enzymes. Glutathione also helps and maintains the functions of other antioxidants.
There is the possibility of a deficiency of glutathione. It usually occurs during aging.For example, it is seen in macular degeneration related to age, diabetes, and lung and gastrointestinal diseases. It may be the cause of pre-eclampsia, Parkinson's, AIDS and other neurodegenerative diseases.
Where to get Glutathione
Some sources of glutathione include fruits such as tomatoes, watermelon, grapefruit, oranges, peaches and cantaloupe.It is found in vegetables such as avocados, potatoes, spinach, okra, acorn squash, and asparagus.It is found in most meats as well. Other sources of vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, kale, parsley, and not only provide GSH - glutathione peroxidase, but it also stimulates the body to make more BA.Since cooking destroys much of glutathione, you will get more to eat raw or steamed vegetables for the best benefits of Glutathione.
Reduced glutathione is in a supplementation that we personally use a company called source naturals a Natural Product meeting the above requirements.The nutrient content in their signature product - Total Balance.
Is Cod Liver Oil Good for My Health?
July 30, 2011 01:19 PM
Cod liver oil is a dietary supplement obtained from the liver of a group of fishes collectively known as cod. It is an all natural remedy for a diverse variety of disorders, and as such remains one of the most popular supplements to this day. Recent studies have confirmed many of its age-old health claims. It is now common knowledge that it aids joint health, treats skin conditions, and improves brain function.
Deactivates Pain Chemicals
The nutrient profile of cod liver oil makes it an excellent source of eicosapentaenoic acid, or EPA, and docosahexaenoic acid, or DHA. These omega 3 fatty acids have long been identified by scientists as anti-inflammatory compounds. Numerous studies have documented that they exert an inhibitory effect on chemicals that sensitize tissues to pain, cause excessive inflammation, and bring on rheumatism.
Nourishes Joint Cartilage
Cod liver oil is a traditional treatment for joint pain characteristic of arthritis. In recent years, it has been noted as the leading therapeutic remedy for rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Research has shown that it is capable of switching off enzymatic processes responsible for the destruction of cartilage tissue in arthritis. Also, its fatty acid content nourishes the proteins found in joint cartilage.
Protects Nervous Tissue
The myelin sheaths that insulate the axons of nerve cells located in the brain and spinal cord require fatty acids to support their physiological functions. In particular, DHA is the principal fatty acid that nourishes nervous tissue. Cod liver oil has been utilized as an adjunct medication for multiple sclerosis in studies, and reports suggest its potential as a mainstay of treatment for other neurological disorders.
Enhances Brain Function
In addition to their known role in the upkeep of myelin sheaths, fatty acids are directly involved in the development of brain function. In fact, they are a major component of breast milk. For years, nutrition experts have suggested consumptions of cod liver oil to combat neurodegenerative disorders as well as enhance cognitive capacities as it contains high levels of compounds proven as effective nootropics.
Alleviates Skin Conditions
The nutrient profile of cod liver oil is particularly good for the skin. Apart from the fact that it counters inflammatory agents that cause hypersensitive skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis, it also promotes tensile strength and maintains skin elasticity. Cod liver oil is a good source of omega 3 fatty acids, essential fatty acids, vitamin A, vitamin, D, and vitamin E, all of which contribute to skin health.
Prevents Heart Disease
Cod liver oil maintains heart health and even reverses cardiovascular disorders. Medical professionals have supported this nutritional supplement as it has been clinically proven to cut the risk of heart disease. It alters the profile of lipids present in the blood and appears to reduce cholesterol. For decades, lower incidence of cardiovascular disorders has been tied to populations that consume high amounts of cod.
Improve Immune System, Digestion, Muscle Recover, The Skin, And More with OptiZinc
May 31, 2011 03:45 PM
Zinc And Your Health.
OptiZinc is a patented zinc supplement in which the trace element zinc is bound to the essential amino acid methionine. It is especially formulated to guarantee absorption of zinc at a rate far superior to other zinc supplements. Hence, it is commercially touted to be the form of zinc best suited for people diagnosed with zinc deficiency. Decades-long studies have recorded noticeable effects on health.
Increases Immune Function
Zinc has long been tied to the immune system. For one, all white blood cells that contain granules in their cytoplasm secrete zinc at certain immune responses. In addition, several other cells in the employ of the immune system utilize zinc signaling for cell-to-cell communication. OptiZinc increases availability of elemental zinc for use by immune cells and modulates immune function in the process.
Promotes Healthy Metabolism
Zinc is one of the trace elements that are pervasive at the cellular level. Proteins that belong to all enzyme classes necessitate the presence of zinc to activate their catalytic activities. The scientific community has long come to a conclusion that zinc is absolutely necessary for healthy metabolism, and thus the daily zinc needs of the body must be met to avoid impairment of physiological functions.
Aids Digestive Processes
OptiZinc is particularly good for the gastrointestinal tract. It contains up to 200 per cent of the recommended daily value for zinc to ensure absorption and aid digestion at the same time. Zinc ions are directly involved in the antimicrobial activities that take place in the intestines. Digestive enzymes that contain zinc are responsible for the breakdown of peptide bonds of proteins during digestion.
Accelerates Muscle Recovery
Supplementation of OptiZinc is likely to benefit people who engage in regular physical activities, especially athletes and bodybuilders. This formulation of zinc contains an equal ration of zinc to methionine, an essential amino acid necessitated in the biosynthesis of many other amino acids. OptiZinc speeds up the recovery of skeletal muscles after subjected to intense exercise.
Improves Skin Conditions
It is well established fact that a deficiency in zinc leads to higher incidence to acne. Severe cases even result in progressive hair loss and skin ulcer formation. These skin conditions are in fact a symptom of a metabolic disorder affecting the uptake of zinc, whether congenital or acquired. OptiZinc have been reported to alleviate zinc deficiency-induced skin problems and promote healthy-looking skin.
Scavenges Free Radicals
OptiZinc is a noted free radical scavenger. Its efficacy in preventing oxidative stress has been associated to the prevention of a diverse variety of illnesses, which include eye problems, prostate inflammation, and neurodegenerative diseases. This special formulation of zinc delivers the highest absorbable amounts of zinc into the systemic circulation to effectively prevent radical damage.
Why Do We Need Essential Fatty Acids (EFA's) And What Source Is Best?
February 15, 2011 05:03 PM
EFA's can boost Your Health
Essential fatty acids are organic compounds that the human body necessitates to support healthy functions of organs and tissues but lack the ability to synthesize. Two fatty acids make up this group: (1) alpha linolenic acid, or ALA, and (2) linoleic acid, LA. Also referred to as EFAs, they are ubiquitous at the cellular level, but known to play an active role in neuronal and vascular tissues as well as in inflammation.
Maintains Cellular Health
One of the most recent advancements in cellular science is the discovery of lipid rafts, which are a part of the bilipid layer of cell membranes specialized for trafficking of cellular molecules, such as proteins and receptors. Also, these lipid rafts have an effect on the viscosity of cell membranes, thereby influencing fluidity that governs membrane-dependent functions of cells such as cellular signaling and phagocytosis, the mechanism by which cells swallow extracellular debris including pathogenic stimuli. Due to its being less stiff and more fluid, essential fatty acids make up cell membranes.
Modulates Neuronal Activities
It has long been postulated that learning and memory is influenced by the availability of intracellular substances known as endocannabinoids in a process called retrograde signaling. Unlike other neurotransmitters, endocannabinoids act on presynaptic cells while produced in postsynaptic cells, and by so doing enhances the signal transmission between nerve cells. Essential fatty acids are converted into endocannabinoids, which are produced on demand, and thus daily intake of EFA is a must. In addition, EFA has for years been in use as a treatment for depression and in the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases.
Regulates Inflammatory Responses
The right amounts of essential fatty acids present inside the human body significantly contribute to the inflammatory responses of the immune system. There are chemical compounds that are produced by the body only in the presence of essential fatty acids, and a number of these compounds are essential to the process of healing and other processes implicated during inflammation. This is the reason why intake of EFA is highly regarded as a therapeutic remedy for reducing inflammatory diseases such as arthritis and autoimmune illnesses.
Promotes Cardiovascular Health
There is high risk of heart attack and related cardiovascular diseases in populations with low levels of essential fatty acids. Especially for individuals who are dependent on drugs that are known to cause oxidative stress in vascular tissues, susceptibility to damages of the blood vessel linings sets the stage for the buildup of macrophages and bad cholesterol in the form of arterial plaques. These plaques contribute to the thinning of the vascular passageways characteristic of atherosclerosis.
There is a reason why alpha linolenic acid and linoleic acid are considered essential fatty acids. They are a vital component of a healthy body with well-functioning organs and tissues. Good thing we have a wide list of food sources rich in EFA, which includes the oils of hemp, soya, canola, and wheat germ. EFA is also abundant in seeds of sunflower, chia, pumpkin, and flax.
EFA's should be an essential part of everyone's diet, have you had your EFA's today?
Take Control Of your Inflammation With Supplements
May 27, 2010 12:40 PM
Chronic inflammation is often induced by uncontrolled oxidative stress (free radical damage). It is the principle mechanism by which degenerative disease takes hold. By reducing oxidative stress and changing the balance within the body to favor the production of anti-inflammatory chemical messengers, one can lower their levels of inflammation. This can be achieved through conscious changes to diet and lifestyle, which includes appropriate supplementation.
By consuming foods that are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, EPA, and DHA, derived from fish oil or flax seeds, one can greatly influence and reduce inflammation. When the body has appropriate balances of omega-3 and omega-6 essential fats, the production of anti-inflammatory prostaglandins is favored and inflammation is kept in check. Increasing the consumption of foods that are rich in omega-3s or supplementing with a high quality fish oil suppresses the formation of harmful prostaglandins and also promotes the synthesis of beneficial prostaglandins. Since the average North American diet contains 10 to 20 times the amount of omega-6 oils that we need, the most sensibly dietary approach is to reduce sources of omega-6 oils and supplement with a high dose of omega-3 oils in order to achieve the optimal 4:1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3.
Supplementing with flaxseed oil is another effective way to optimize your omega-6 to omega-3 ratio. Anti-inflammatory EPA can be manufactured in the body by converting the alpha-linolenic acid that is often found in flaxseed oil. Supplementing with this oil, along with restricting omega-6 fatty acid intake, raises tissue EPA levels to those comparable to fish oil supplementation. It should even be noted that flaxseed oil contains more than twice the omega-3 fats as fish oil. Additionally, alpha-linolenic acid can be found in a variety of other plant source including pumpkin seeds, walnuts, and other nuts. However, flaxseed is by far the richest source of omega-3 oil, carrying 58% by weight.
Another nutrient that plays a crucial role in inflammation is gamma tocopherol. This nutrient acts through a mechanism that is unavailable to alpha tocopherol by reacting with RNO radicals to subdue inflammation. Gamma tocopherol also has the ability to reduce inflammation by inhibiting COX-2 , which is an enzyme that has a central role in the inflammatory process as it controls the synthesis of the inflammatory prostaglandin. The consuption of gamma tocopherol has been found to reduce several other inflammatory protagonists at the site of inflammation. Strong evidence has found that this form of vitamin E exhibits potent anti-inflammatory properties that are extremely important for human disease prevention and therapy.
Similar to essential fatty acids is resveratrol and green tea polyphenols each of which have the ability to inhibit the activation of NFkB and control a wide variety of inflammatory pathways. Green tea polyphenols are also believed to be neuroprotective, as they invoke a spectrum of cellular mechanisms such as the chelation of metals, scavenging of free radicals, and modulation of mitochondrial function in nerve tissues. Green tea polyphenols are now considered to be therapeutic agents that can alter brain processes and serve as neuroprotective agents in the progression of neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
There are a wide variety of nutrients that are involved in fighting systemic inflammation. These nutrients and nutrient categories include EPA and DHA, linolenic acid, gamma tocopherol, alpha-lipoic acid, vitamin C, flavonoids, procyanidolic oligomers, and the phenolic compounds found in green tea, turmeric, and olive extracts. When changing your diet from saturated fats to unsaturated fats and adds more fruits and vegetables to their diet along with antioxidant vitamin supplements, one can successfully reduce inflammation naturally and live a healthier happier life.
Health And Applications Of Coenzyme Q10
April 17, 2008 02:57 PM
Coenzyme Q10 is a critical cofactor in the biological energy process. It is a powerful antioxidant and plays a vital role in our health and wellness. Coenzyme Q10 is involved in many disease states, consuming adequate coenzyme Q10 can ensure that one maintains good health which can reduce the risk of chronic disease such as the ones listed below:
Many prescription drugs can cause Coenzyme Q10 to deplete especially statin drugs (cholesterol meds). Beta blocking drugs and anti-diabetic drugs can also leach the body of vital Coenzyme Q10 which could lead to the above diseases if left un-checked over time.
April 16, 2008 01:10 PM
Coenzyme Q10 is an important cofactor that is found in nearly every cell of the body. Coenzyme Q10 is naturally produced by the body as well as attained through the foods we eat or in supplement form. With out it, every cell in our body could not produce energy to function and we would die. Coenzyme Q10 has the capability to regenerate antioxidants, protecting cells and DNA from oxidative stress which naturally occurs in the body every day.
Some may say that coenzyme Q10 exists in only one form, but in fact this substance exists in at least three forms in the body naturally. These three forms are CoQ ubiquinone, CoQH ubisemiquinone and COQH2 ubiquinol all of which are metabolically active forms of coenzyme Q10.
Ubiquinone has been commercially available for more than 30 years normally consumed orally, but recently stable forms of Ubiquinol have been made available for consumption which is of great interest by many researchers. The former ubiquinone when ingested had to be reduced by an enzymatically driven conversion from ubiquinone to Ubiquinol in the digestive tract. This conversion is done by the transfer of electrons effectively reducing the coenzyme Q10 to a more usable form Ubiquinol.
Once Ubiquinol is produced the body can more easily manufacture ATP which is directly used by cells for cellular energy. In young individuals, 90 percent of coenzyme Q10 found in the blood is in the Ubiquinol form. This being the case, the old form (ubiquinone) was less absorbable then the newer Ubiquinol that can go right to work in the body. Ubiquinol is considered the strongest lipid soluble antioxidant that is biosynthesized, providing an active defense against oxidative stress that damages, cells, proteins, lipids, and DNA.
Some scientists believe that cellular damage from free radicals cause our bodies to age. The older we get the less our bodies produce coenzyme Q10 which in its self is an antioxidant and restores other antioxidants in the body to fight the war against free radicals. Eating foods rich in antioxidants and or supplementing with antioxidants may slow the aging process.
With age, disease, and some prescription medications, the old form of coenzyme Q10 can not easily follow the process of absorption in the intestinal tract where it is reduced and shuttled through the lymphatic system into the circulatory system (blood). This is why Ubiquinol was so highly sot after. Ubiquinol is already reduced, the preferred form coenzyme Q10 the body wants to circulate and retain.
When one ages, energy levels always drop and one tends to slow down and feel tired sooner in the day, this may be because of a drop in coenzyme Q10 in the blood. Many recent studies suggest that the plasma Ubiquinol ratio is reduced in response to cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disease, cancer, fatigue and especially in type-2 diabetes. Supplementing with Ubiquinol can help restore plasma levels and boost ones energy levels and possibly slow diseases.
To sum it up, if you are over 45, suffering from a degenerative disease or cancer, feel tired and run down, or taking prescription medications, conventional coenzyme Q10 is not what you want to take to elevate plasma levels. Ubiquinol is needed because the body can not adequately produce the most abundant form of coenzyme Q10 in he blood (Ubiquinol). So for those who want to maintain health and wellness, look for Ubiquinol in their local health food store.
Natural Supplements Like Fish Oils And Phosphatidylserine Can Boost Memory
January 14, 2008 03:24 PM
We often think of our brain as being different from other organs, but the brain undergoes changes over time, just like the heart. Up until recently, brain aging and everything that goes along with it was associated with neuron failure. Actually, brain neurons do not undergo massive die-off with age. Although some neurons are lost, the brain continues to grow new ones, though at a slower pace. Decreasing cognitive function is now believed to start as early as one's late thirties, which is the result of a lowered vascular function for oxygen and nutrient supply, increased oxidative stress, and decreased production of neurotransmitters. Other issues impact memory too such as normal aging, emotional trauma, alcoholism, depression, seizures, dementias, stroke, neurodegenerative illnesses, and obesity. All of these can lead to devastating changes in mood and memory. Additionally, it is widely known that the use of cholesterol-lowering drugs can severely impact skills that involve brain functions.
Neurological Health and CoQ10
February 25, 2007 12:06 PM
Between 1946 and 1965, 78 million Americans were born, creating the largest number of children in U.S. history. This Baby Boom generation has greatly influenced the makeup of American society and undoubtedly w ill continue to do so. Thanks to good nutrition and health care, Baby Boomers are aging well and have an excellent life expectancy. For the first time in history, we have more people turning 60 every day, and record numbers of adults reaching their seventh decade. As a result, neurological diseases associated with aging, such as Parkinson’s disease, are becoming major health care concerns. The good news is CoQ10 has applications for neurological diseases, in addition to its better known use for cardiovascular diseases.
Q. What is CoQ10?
A. CoQ10 is a natural, fat-soluble nutrient present in virtually all cells. CoQ10 also is known as ubiquinone (existing everywhere there is human life). CoQ10 is vital to the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is the energy-rich compound used for all energy-requiring processes in the body.
Q. Isn’t CoQ10 a supplement for heart health?
A. Yes, it is. Because the heart requires lots of ATP to meet its high energy needs, CoQ10’s function in heart health is well understood. Numerous clinical studies have demonstrated that when individuals with heart disease take CoQ10, their symptoms improve, sometimes quite dramatically. Supplemental CoQ10 improves the heart’s pumping ability, improves blood circulation, increases tolerance to exercise, and improves the heart’s muscle tone. CoQ10 also is a powerful antioxidant and protects heart tissue from free-radical damage.
Q. How does CoQ10 affect brain health?
A. CoQ10 works in the brain the same way it works elsewhere in the body: it’s essential to ATP production. Nearly all human cells contain tiny structures called mitochondria. Mitochondria are referred to as cell powerhouses because they produce cellular energy. Depending on what each cell’s job is. There can be several thousand mitochondria in one cell. If a cell needs a lot of energy, it will have more mitochondria. This explains why heart cells contain so many mitochondria; the continual pumping of blood requires continual ATP production.
The brain also requires huge amounts of uninterrupted energy to regulate, integrate, and coordinate ongoing nervous system transmissions. To meet this need, ATP production within the mitochondria of brain cells is vital. Since CoQ10 exerts such a powerful influence on heart cells in ATP production, it was a natural progression for scientists to wonder how it affects brain cells. Brain and nervous system research led to the conclusion that the same intracellular principles apply. CoQ10 is produced in the body to assist in ATP production. Without it, ATP cannot be produced.
The most important discovery regarding CoQ10 and the brain is that CoQ10, when formulated with certain ingredients, can cross the blood-brain barrier and enter the brain’s mitochondria. If large amounts of CoQ10 can get into the brain cell’s mitochondria, its ability to make ATP is greatly enhanced.
Q. What is the blood-brain barrier and why is it important?
A. The blood-brain barrier is a unique anatomical structure. The cells that make up the blood vessels that provide blood to the brain are extremely close together. This greatly restricts what can leave the bloodstream and enter the brain. While the blood-brain barrier protects the brain and spinal cord from potentially toxic substances, it also can be a significant obstacle to therapy of central nervous system disorders. Only substances with certain solubilities or those that have a transport system can cross the blood-brain barrier to a significant degree.
Obtaining optimal absorption of CoQ10 is difficult. The CoQ10 molecule is large and inflexible. The easiest and least expensive way to increase absorption levels is with the use of harsh solvents such as propylene glycol. However, at higher doses, these types of chemicals are considered dangerous (neurotoxic) to the person with a serious neurodegenerative disease. It is more difficult, as well as more expensive (considering raw materials, research, and proper manufacturing methods) to promote absorption with less harmful alternatives. However, reputable companies ensure that their products are safe for all their customers. Look for CoQ10 products formulated with vitamin E and other safe ingredients such as Micosolle.
Nearly all CoQ10 supplements enter the bloodstream. But, only CoQ10 supplements with special formulations have been scientifically shown to enter the mitochondria and cross the blood-brain barrier.
Q. If CoQ10 is made in the body, why take supplements?
A. While CoQ10 is synthesized in the body, these levels may be insufficient to meet the body’s requirements. Researchers have discovered CoQ10 levels diminish with age and as a result of dietary inadequacies and various disease states. They also have determined some medications significantly reduce CoQ10 levels in the body.
Although CoQ10 exists in some dietary sources, it may not be realistic to obtain CoQ10 through food alone. For example, it would take approximately 3 pounds of sardines, 7 pounds of beef, or 8 pounds of peanuts to equal 100 mg of supplemental CoQ10.
Q. How does CoQ10 help people with Parkinson’s disease?
A. CoQ10 seems to have several beneficial actions in the illness. Researchers have looked at mitochondria in brain cells and determined people with Parkinson’s disease have reduced activity of Complex I in the electron transport chain. Recent research has proposed the reduced activity of Complex I interferes with the brain-signaling chemical dopamine. Stored and newly synthesized dopamine is depleted. The dopamine depletion causes nerve cell degeneration.
A recent clinical study involved 80 patients with Parkinson’s disease (both men and women). The researchers first evaluated all the participants to establish scores for basic motor skills (measuring the ability to control physical movements such as walking), mental status (whether the person was depressed or experiencing memory loss) and the activities of daily living (whether the person was experiencing difficulty with handwriting, dressing themselves, using utensils such as knives and forks, and so on). This scale is known as the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). This process is known as establishing “baseline values,” that is, the condition of the patient before receiving any treatment.
Participants were divided into 4 groups. Each group received either 300 mg, 600 mg, or 1200 mg of the special form of CoQ10, or a placebo. The researchers observed the participants for 16 months.
The results of the study showed that all the participants who received CoQ10 had smaller declines in function compared to the placebo group, but the smallest decline was experienced by the group taking the highest amount of the special form of CoQ10.
The most significant results were noted specifically in the activities of daily living scores by the people taking 1200 mg of CoQ10 daily. These people retained better ability to feed and dress themselves, speak, walk, and bathe or shower by themselves. They maintained greater independence for a longer time. Parkinson’s disease, as with other neurodegenerative diseases, robs the sufferer of their ability to control the movements of their own body and care for themselves. Supplementation with CoQ10, while not a cure, is the first intervention that showed a slowing in the progressive deterioration of the function associated with this disease.
Q. What were the results of clinical research on Huntington’s Disease?
A. A randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled study respected type of study, was conducted at the University of Rochester. All of the 347 Huntington’s disease (HD) patients were experiencing some HD symptoms, but were still in the early stages of the disease. The patients (who did not know which drug they were receiving) were randomly assigned to four different treatment groups: 25 percent received Remacemide, 25 percent received CoQ10, 25 percent received both, and 25 percent received a placebo, or sugar pill. The researchers, who also did not know which patients got which drug, watched and recorded their progress for two and one-half years. Remacemide is a new drug made by Astra Seneca that blocks the neurotransmitter glutamate in the brain, that has long been suspected of contributing to the death of brain cells in Huntington’s disease.
Unfortunately, in the CARE-HD study, Remacemide had no effect on the progression of the disease in patients in the early stages. However, the individuals who received 600 mg of CoQ10 per day experienced some slowing of the disease progression. They were able to manage daily activities, such as meal preparation, housekeeping tasks, and personal care longer than those not on CoQ10. They were also able to focus their attention better and were less depressed and irritable. The portion of the studied patients receiving 600 mg of CoQ10 per day experienced a 15 percent decline in the progression of HD. According to the researchers conducting the study, a 15 percent decline in the progression of HD would roughly translate into approximately one more year of independence for patients. This is the very first study from more than a dozen Huntington’s disease patient trails that showed any modification of the course of the illness.
Of note, the effects of the CoQ10 had not abated at the end of the research study. That is, the benefit of using CoQ10, 600 mg per day, was still increasing; this suggests that the longer a patient supplements with CoQ10, the greater the decline in the progression of HD. The next phase of the CARE-HD research will test a higher dose of CoQ10 (1200 mg or more per day), with more patients (over 1000), for a longer period of time (approximately 5 years). This study should improve our understanding of the optimal dose and the total achievable decline in the progression of HD. The CoQ10 product used in the CARE-HD study was designated an Orphan Drug by the FDA. The product utilizes a proprietary, patent-pending delivery mechanism, which is proven to be safe and tolerable at high doses for people suffering from neurodegenerative diseases, substantially improving brain tissue levels of CoQ10.
Q. What other diseases could benefit from CoQ10 supplementation?
A. Studies show CoQ10 levels are greatly reduced in Alzheimer’s patients. Mitochondrial abnormalities also are noted; however, research has yet to determine how or why this occurs. Some scientists believe damage to mitochondria is an early feature of the disease. Free-radical damage also is a feature of Alzheimer’s.
In a study of 27 Alzheimer’s patients, subjects were given 60 mg of CoQ10, 150 mg of iron, and 180 mg of vitamin B6 daily. Each patient’s mitochondria activity was effectively activated. All patients continued to experience gradual decline. However, researchers believed that with this combination, the progression was much slower and allowed the patients to experience 1 to 2 years of extended good health.
ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) is a progressive, fatal, neurological disease. It occurs when the nerve cells in the brain that control voluntary movement gradually degenerate. Investigation of CoQ10 in individuals with ALS is just beginning. Researchers at the Eleanor and Lou Gehrig ALS Center at Columbia University recently conducted a small clinical pilot trial of CoQ10 in ALS. The study was an open label study, which meant that everyone enrolled received CoQ10, 400 mg three times per day. Of the 16 patients originally enrolled, nine patients completed the study. Six of these nine patients experienced some benefits. The patients declined from 0 – 25 percent in functional scores, 6 percent in strength, and 10 percent in breathing ability. These scores reflect a positive trend compared to the 50 percent decline that is seen in the natural history of ALS over the same period of time (5 to 9 months). Citing the need to conduct more studies of the effectiveness of CoQ10 for people with ALS is rapidly and efficiently as possible to get answers to patients and clinicians, another clinical trial is currently underway at the Gehrig ALS Center. This is a pilot study to determine if CoQ10 has short-term effects on motor nerves in the brain using magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). The researchers are going to try to “see” if CoQ10 can change the chemical sin the brain’s upper motor nerves of people with ALS, an important next step of the investigation.
Q. Can taking CoQ10 prevent neurodegenerative disease?
A. To date, there have been no studies or research examining whether CoQ10 can prevent these diseases.
Alzheimer’s disease prevention is being clinically investigated. Researchers have determined that people who take certain anti-inflammatory medications seem less likely to develop the illness. A large, multi-centered trial is studying this connection.
Q. How much CoQ10 should I take?
A. Depending on your family history of neurological disease and your disease experience, studies show benefits at doses of 100 to 200 mg of CoQ10 daily. Some studies used doses of up to 1,200 mg per day.
CoQ10’s safety has been evaluated. To date, no toxicities have been reported. Mild stomach upset may occur. Taking CoQ10 with meals usually alleviates this rare effect.
Q. What should I look for in a CoQ10 supplement?
A. Use products which have a strong clinical research track record, supported by product-specific research from reputable institutions, and have been proven to be safe, tolerable and effective in treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. The CoQ10 product you choose should be proven to: be absorbed, enter the blood stream, cross the blood brain barrier and increase mitochondrial levels of CoQ10. If the product you are considering does not have evidence to support these points, keep looking. Once you have found a candidate, examine the product’s safety and efficacy record for neurodegenerative diseases- if the product has not been proven to be safe and effective, keep looking. Good products exist; however, caveat emptor.
CoQ10 supplementation for people with neurodegenerative diseases is supported by contemporary clinical research. CoQ10 is certainly not the only answer to the complex issues of management and treatment of these types of diseases. However, research indicates that it is a bigger piece of the puzzle than physicians and scientists ever imagined. As we continue to study this naturally occurring compound, we are finding more and more benefits to the body.
All CoQ10 is not created equal. For safety and overall effectiveness, use a CoQ10 product that is supported by product-specific research from reputable institution, which is proven to be safe, tolerable and effective at high doses; deviating from this set of criteria may do more harm than good for people with these serious illnesses. Choose clinically tested products from a well-respected company and increase the potential to achieve and maintain brain and neurological health.
Green Tea Gets More Positive Press…
September 12, 2006 02:09 PM
A new study has added to the abundant evidence that green tea may provide health benefits. In this case, research published in the Journal Human Molecular Genetics (2006, vol.15: 2743-2751) indicated that the green tea extract epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) may slow accumulation of proteins that cause Huntington’s disease. This neurodegenerative disease, hereditary and incurable, is caused by protein misfolding. These mutant proteins cannot be disposed of by the body and accumulate in the brain, eventually becoming toxic to nerve cells. The new study looks at the effect of EGCG on the amassing of these mutant proteins and discovered that the extract was able to interfere with the very early events of this process. EGCG inhibited the misfolding of the proteins in vitro, for example. The authors suggested that further research should be conducted to determine if the doses of EGCG needed could be obtained through drinking green tea or if supplementation was required.
Vitaberry Plus + Super Fruit Antioxidant
December 07, 2005 05:43 PM
Vitaberry Plus +™ Super Fruit AntioxidantBy Nilesh Patel, NOW Quality Assurance, April 20, 2005 Why are FRUITS AND VEGETABLES important? “Diets rich in FRUITS AND VEGETABLES may reduce the risk of some types of cancer and other chronic diseases.”- National Cancer Institute. OXYGEN AND ANTIOXIDANTS As we all know, “Oxygen is critical to life,” but is itself a double-edged sword. While oxygen is necessary to sustain life and for natural defense against microbes, too much oxygen in our cells can lead to the production of “free radicals” (mitochondrial respiratory chain) or ROS (Reactive Oxygen Species). Free radicals come in many forms - singlet oxygen, hydrogen peroxide, superoxideperoxynitrite, to name a few - but all have one commonality. Each has an unpaired (unbalanced) electron, a situation it remedies by stealing an electron from a stable molecule. This sets off a domino effect of oxidation, a chain reaction that usually ends up damaging cellular integrity and compromising overall health. Nature has a defense system in place to protect these processes in the form of antioxidants. Whether endogenous (produced by the body, such as liver enzymes, SOD, coenzymes and sulfur-containing compounds) or exogenous (obtained through the diet, such as vitamins C & E, bioflavonoids, carotenes, etc.), antioxidants “quench” free radicals by donating an electron to stabilize a molecule, thus controling the chain reaction and stopping the oxidation “domino effect”. ANTIOXIDANT-RICH FOODS Research suggests that eating plenty of foods high in antioxidants helps to slow the processes associated with aging and protect against many chronic diseases. Maximizing one’s antioxidant power will enhance overall health. Fruit and vegetables contain both nutritive and non-nutritive factors that can affect oxidative damage and enzymatic defense and might contribute to redox (antioxidant and prooxidant) actions. A new “6-a-day” study looked into the effects of fruits and vegetables on markers of oxidative stress and antioxidative defense in healthy nonsmokers by The Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research in Denmark. The study found that fruits and vegetables increase erythrocyte glutathione peroxidase activity and resistance of plasma lipoproteins to oxidation more efficiently than do the nutritive factors (vitamins and minerals) that the fruits and vegetables are also known to contain. Certain berries, such as blackberries, also contain salicylates, which are also linked to heart health and prevention of atherosclerosis. The protective effects of fruits and vegetables intake on both heart disease death and deaths in general have previously been demonstrated but researchers at the Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, Boston. Quercetin is an anti-oxidizing flavonoid found in many berries (such as cranberries, bilberries, blueberries, strawberries, etc.) and can prevent CVDs (coronary vascular diseases), according to a recent Finnish study. All these natural plant polyphenols are responsible for the colors of many red and purple berries, fruits, vegetables and flowers. GOVERNMENT GUIDELINES The new federal guidelines released earlier this year by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommend eating more fruits and vegetables, combined, than any other food group -- five cups or about 10 servings a day for most adults. The amount of fruits and vegetables recommended has increased for men and women of every age. “Fruits and vegetables are the "good news" story of the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans for food-loving consumers, the industry and America's public health”, stated the Produce for Better Health Foundation (PBH). Eating a variety of colorful phytochemical-rich fruits and vegetables has been associated with lower risk of some chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Many authoritative organizations such as the National Cancer Institute and The American Heart Association recommend getting phytochemicals from whole foods, such as fruits and vegetables, rather than from individual component supplements. The Scottish government is promoting healthy eating through a scheme designed to increase purchasing of fruit and nutritional foods. Scottish health minister Andy Kerr said, "This initiative shows that healthy eating can be good for customers and good for business." Scottish women are said to have the highest rates of death from lung cancer in the world as well as the highest rates in Europe for coronary heart disease. They also have low consumption of fruits and vegetables, shown in studies to help protect against some cancers and benefit heart health. ROS (Reactive Oxygen Species) Free radicals and oxygen free radicals play an important role in the development and progression of many brain disorders such as brain injury, neurodegenerative disease, and Down syndrome. Oxidative stress is an important factor in the etiology and pathogenesis of diabetes & is also linked to other host of degenerative health conditions. Fortunately, antioxidants are available to support the body’s defense and fight disease and aging. Examples of “Fast acting antioxidants” in the body (serum) are: uric acid (polyphenols), ascorbate, bilirubin, vitamin E (the later two are lipid soluble). Examples of “Slow acting antioxidants” are glucose, urea nitrogen etc. In short, free radicals, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) are generated as by-products of normal cellular metabolism. Their deleterious effects are minimized in vivo (in the body) by the presence of antioxidant systems. How do Antioxidants work? Antioxidants are substances in plants that help maintain health. Antioxidants protect against damage to cells caused by too many “free oxygen radicals,” which form because of the effects of oxidation. Smoking, sunlight, heavy exercise, and pollution all increase oxidation in the body. Most people would benefit by eating more (five to nine or more servings) fruits and vegetables & colorful plant foods, such as purple, dark green, yellow, orange, blue, and red ones, each day. These have healthful pigments along with antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin C, carotenoids, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin E, selenium, flavonoids, and other beneficial substances. There are numerous ways in which these antioxidants affect, but can be explained in two groups: Alpha (a) Effects: This refers to the scavenging or neutralizing of free radicals. These effects do not change the way humans (or animals) feel. There are also no noticeable health, psychological or emotional benefits. While there are no obvious changes, increased total antioxidant intakes are associated with decreased tumor rates, prevention of heart attacks and increased longevity. Beta (ß) Effects: These are the changes on health, psychological or emotional state that you or others will notice. In this case, the antioxidant is affecting metabolic processes (enzymes) with consequent changes in the physical (improvement in joint movements, improved skin condition, tissue damage recovery), emotional (better ability to cope with stress) or psychological state (increased alertness). The ORAC value Because most of the active nutritional components in fruits and vegetables are antioxidants, accurate measurement of antioxidant activity serves as a good indicator of potential health benefit. Scientific opinion runs high that ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity) will eventually become a government standard of reference for overall daily fruits and vegetables intake. ORAC units are a measurement of the ability of food to stop oxidation. It is most generally expressed in terms of Trolox equivalent per gram (µmole Trolox equivalents (TE)/g). POPULATION DATA A survey done by the National Research Council indicates that only 10% of the US population consumes the recommended five servings of fruits and vegetables per day. The equivalent to eating 5 mixed servings of fruits and vegetables per day is about 1,670 ORAC units. Based on scientific evidence it is suggested that daily antioxidant intake should be increased to between 3,000 and 5,000 ORAC units per day, per human subject, in order to reach a significant antioxidant capacity in blood plasma and other tissues. WHAT IS NOW DOING TO HELP? In accord with our mission, “To provide value in products and services that empower people to lead healthier lives,” NOW® Foods is introducing an ALL-FRUIT-DERIVED antioxidant product called VitaBerry Plus +™ Super Fruit Antioxidant Vcaps (vegetarian capsules) (product number #3336). At time of manufacture this product provides an ORAC value of at least 2,500 units per serving from a full-spectrum antioxidant blend of fruits containing phytochemicals and phenolic compounds such as anthocyanins, proanthocyanins, chlorogenic acid, ellagic acid, quinic acid, resveratrol , many organic acids, resveratrol and vitamin C. VitaBerry Plus +™ is formulated with VitaBerry™ Hi-ORAC Fruit Blend [a proprietary blend of fruit extracts & concentrated powders containing Wild Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium) extract, Grape (Vitis vinifera) & Grape seed extract, Raspberry (Rubus idaeus) & Raspberry seed extract, Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon), Prune (Prunus domestica), Tart Cherry (Prunus cerasus), Wild Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) extract & Strawberry (Fragaria virginia)], Hi-Active™ Orange (Citrus sinensis) and Pomegranate (Punica granatum) min. 40% ellagic acid fruit extract. One gram of VitaBerry™ Hi-ORAC Fruit Blend provides at least 6,000 ORAC units (i.e., µmole Trolox equivalents (TE)/g). (Also watch for an upcoming antioxidant product from NOW called Enzogenol® (Pinus radiata bark extract from New Zealand) with Rutin (a flavonoid from South American fruit of Dimorphandra mollis) and Grapeseed extract. IS IT EFFECTIVE? Total ORAC value includes both lipophilic and hydrophilic components. VitaBerry Plus +™ contains only water/hydroethanol based extracts and concentrated (100:1 to 125:1) freeze-dried fresh fruit blends, so the lipophilic ORAC value is mere 2-4% of the total ORAC value. Glutathione peroxidase is a selenium-containing enzyme that decreases cell death from brain injuries. It also acts as a critical first-line antioxidant defense on the airway (respiratory) epithelial surface against ROS and RNS (reactive nitrogen species. Genetics research has found that the glutathione S-transferase gene controls the onset of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease etc. Taking glutathione (GSH) itself as a supplement does not boost cellular glutathione levels, since it breaks down in the digestive tract before it reaches the cells. So glutathione precursor dietary supplements (such as NAC and GliSODin), along with fruits and vegetables, are effective in boosting intracellular levels of GSH. The lungs have a defense system against the ROS oxidants consisting of low molecular weight antioxidants such as GSH and intracellular enzymes such as SOD, catalase and glutathione peroxidase to protect against the toxic effects of oxidants generated within the cells. Some of the primary effects of VitaBerry Plus +™ against the common reactive free-radical species or ROS are as follows: - Superoxide dismutase-SOD (destroys Superoxide radicals),
- Catalase (neutralizes peroxides),
- Functions similar to reduced Glutathione (GSH),
- Glutathione peroxidase enzyme (detoxifies peroxides, using GSH as a reducing agent),
- Functions similar to Glutathione S-transferase (GST),
- Nullifies Superoxide-generating NADH/NADPH oxidase system In conclusion More concentrated than fresh berries, with over 6000 ORAC units per gram, VitaBerry Plus +™ provides consumers with the antioxidant power of almost 15 servings per day of FRUITS AND VEGETABLES ina convenient vegetarian capsule form! VitaBerry™ PLUS +™ (# 3336) provides a powerful, convenient way to supplement diets that do not include sufficient fruit and vegetable antioxidants Selected References: USDA/HHS guidelines report at: etaryguidelines/dga2005/document/
ls.com/proprietary/pdf/VitaberryBrochure.pdf g Kaplan M., Hayek T. , Raz A., Coleman R. and Aviram M. Pomegranate juice supplementation to apolipoprotein E deficient mice with extensive atherosclerosis reduces macrophages lipid peroxidation, cellular cholesterol accumulation and development of atherosclerosis. J. Nutr. 131: 2082-2089 (2001) Lars O Dragsted et. al., The 6-a-day study:effects if fruit and vegetables on markers of oxidative stress and antioxidative defense in healthy nonsmokers. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 79, No. 6, 1060-1072, June 2004 Fuhrman B. and Aviram M. Polyphenols and flavaonoids protects LDL against atherogenic modifications.In: Handbook of Antioxidants Biochemical, Nutritional and Clinical Aspects, 2nd Edition. Cadenas E & Packer L (Eds.) Marcel Dekker, NY(Pub.). 16:303-336 (2001) Wood, Jacqueline, et al. Antioxidant activity of procyanidin-containing plant extracts at different pHs. Food Chemistry 77 (2002) 155-161 Aviram M. Pomegranate juice as a major source for polyphenolic flavonoids and it is most potent antioxidant against LDL oxidation and atherosclerosis. Free Radical Research 36 (Supplement 1): 71-72 (2002) Jennifer Schraag, Antioxidants: Nature’s Way of Balancing Life. HSR Health Supplement Retailer, Vol. 11, No. 2, 24-27, February 2005 com/news/printNewsBis.asp?id=58665 com/news/printNewsBis.asp?id=58697