|Brain Tumour Survivor
|Resveratrol promotes health and longevity; study shows it..
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|Author:||kenobewan [ Fri Aug 13, 2010 9:15 am ]|
|Post subject:||Resveratrol promotes health and longevity; study shows it..|
Resveratrol promotes health and longevity; study shows it suppresses inflammation, free radicals
(NaturalNews) Resveratrol, a phytochemical found in red grapes, grape juice and red wine, has been shown to prolong life in yeast and animals because of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. But does that mean it has the same effects on the human body? University at Buffalo (UB) endocrinologists have tested the natural compound for the first time in a prospective trial in people and found the answer appears to be "yes". And that finding adds to the growing amount of evidence that resveratrol may not only protect health but promote human longevity, too.
Husam Ghanim, PhD, UB research assistant professor of medicine and first author on the study, which was just published by the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, pointed out in a press statement that resveratrol has already been shown to extend life as well as to reduce the rate of aging in roundworms and fruit flies -- most likely because it increases expression of a specific gene associated with longevity. There's also research showing it plays a role in insulin resistance, a condition linked to oxidative stress (which is known to raise the risk of a host of serious health problems from heart disease to diabetes).
"Since there are no data demonstrating the effect of resveratrol on oxidative and inflammatory stress in humans, we decided to determine if the compound reduces the level of oxidative and inflammatory stress in humans," Paresh Dandona, MD, PhD, UB distinguished professor of medicine and senior author on the study, said in the media release. "Several of the key mediators of insulin resistance also are pro-inflammatory, so we investigated the effect of resveratrol on their expression as well."
For the groundbreaking study, which was conducted at Kaleida Health's Diabetes-Endocrinology Center of Western New York where Dr. Dandona is the director, 20 research participants were divided into two groups. One group received a supplement containing 40 milligrams of resveratrol while the other group received an identical pill containing no active ingredient. Each person took either the resveratrol or placebo pill daily for six weeks. Fasting blood samples were taken at the start of the trial and at weeks one, three and six.
The results? The resveratrol supplement suppressed the generation of unstable molecules known as free radicals. By causing oxidative stress, free radicals spur inflammation which can damage the lining of blood vessels.
What's more, the blood taken from those who took the resveratrol supplement also showed suppression of the inflammatory protein called tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and other similar compounds that increase inflammation in blood vessels and interfere with the action of insulin. The blood samples from research subjects receiving the placebo showed no change in these biochemical markers of inflammation.
Shutting down inflammatory factors is significant because it indicates that in the long term, resveratrol could have an impact on whether someone develops type 2 diabetes and heart disease and/ or suffers a stroke. In addition, according to Dr. Dandona, it indicates the compound could have an anti-aging effect in humans.
As NaturalNews recently reported, French researchers also have made progress figuring out how resveratrol promotes health. In the first ever primate study of its kind, scientists from the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Paris found resveratrol has the ability to rev up metabolism and spark weight loss (http://www.naturalnews.com/027420_r...).
http://www.naturalnews.com/029449_resve ... ation.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Mon Aug 16, 2010 9:28 am ]|
Vitamin C a help or hindrance?
The conflicting medical advice on whether vitamin C can help the treatment of cancer is difficult for patients, as Andrea Fox discovered.
Michael Jameson and Bill Reeder are both fluent in the wintry language of cancer. But they speak in different dialects on the subject of vitamin C as a treatment for New Zealand's biggest killer.
Jameson, a clinical oncologist at New Zealand's busiest hospital, Waikato, is also a cancer researcher and teacher. Reeder is a qualified medical practitioner, a GP who prescribes non- pharmaceutical treatments along with mainstream medicine at his practice in Hamilton. He wants it made clear that whereas specialists such as Jameson "treat cancer", he "treats people with cancer". Neither doctor felt the earth move when New Zealand researchers announced last month they'd established that vitamin C has a role in controlling tumour growth. After all, the role of this vitamin in treating cancer has been debated for more than 50 years. Google "cancer and vitamin C" and you get seven million hits.
For Jameson, the experimental finding by a team from Otago University, published in the prestigious international journal Cancer Research, was "another small piece in a very big puzzle". For Reeder it was simply another - albeit welcome - verification that vitamin C is beneficial to the immune system, and therefore helpful in the treatment of people with cancer.
Predictably, Jameson says the research team's journal article was "much more balanced" than media reports about the findings.
Long story short, the Otago University researchers said that for tumours to be able to grow, they had to be able to generate a blood supply and vitamin C can inhibit that process. Jameson says what they showed for the first time, after analysing cancerous and normal tissue from women having surgery for cancer of the uterus, was that aggressive cancers had lower levels of vitamin C but the least aggressive cancers had quite high levels of vitamin C - "much more than would be expected in normal tissue".
So does this mean we members of the cancer club should be lining up for mega doses of vitamin C to complement chemotherapy and radiation therapy treatments? Not so fast, says Jameson. We could be undermining his work, making his treatments less effective. Go for it (with qualifications), says Reeder, a GP for 25 years before starting up in integrative medicine 10 years ago. At the very least, he says, it will help the side effects of invasive treatments and there's much clinical evidence that it helps protect normal cells during those procedures.
WHEN YOU'VE just been diagnosed with cancer - and particularly if it has snuck up on you to a reasonably advanced stage (late stage three or four) by the time you find out - this sort of conflicting advice from professionals is surely not what the doctor ordered.
Life has taken on a whole new kind of uncertainty. You're looking for rules and reasons, comforting facts and experienced professionals to tell you that if you do a, b and even c, the result will be x and y. But new entrants to the cancer club quickly learn there are few hard-and-fast rules and no guarantees.
Doctors like Jameson will make recommendations on a regime of treatments, usually involving chemotherapy or radiation therapy or pharmaceutical drugs or surgery or combinations of some or all, and they will try to ensure you fully understand what is involved and the functions and effects of procedures. Nurses, therapists and various other medical personnel will carry them out.
But ultimately the onus is on the patient to make the decision about their treatment regime. Cancer has caused such devastation for so long it has become a big business and there's no shortage of treatment advice. Predators lie in wait to exploit fear and well-meaning charlatans will also happily take your money. The internet - with the exception of the excellent Cancer Society website and cancer.org - is best avoided.
So division between medical professionals over whether to hit the vitamin C - hardwired into us as a dietary essential by our mothers - is a tough one to encounter when you are vulnerable, sick and probably scared silly. Are you missing out on a life-saving or life- prolonging opportunity by choosing one opinion over the other?
It's a real dilemma. I went to see Bill Reeder during my course of chemo and daily radiation treatments prescribed by Jameson as a prelude to major surgery. Reeder had been highly recommended by a sicker friend, also under Jameson's care, who had the full vitamin C works and says he's alive today because he did. Reeder wanted to give me intravenous vitamin C treatments - after I'd cleared it with Jameson. Jameson didn't approve. So I didn't. And I wonder to this day, still to get a five-year cancer-free status passport, if it was the right decision.
So what is Jameson's problem with vitamin C? He says he is not "dissing" it. He just needs to see some hard clinical evidence that it works against cancer - in people. So far the evidence is "extremely limited", he says.
"The results from studies to date in mice suggest it's worth studying this; doing clinical trials in people to see if it actually works. But the trouble is what looks good in cells growing in a plastic dish and what looks good in mice, commonly does not translate into what works in people."
Jameson, who has pioneered New Zealand clinical trials of the value of selenium in cancer treatment, says in low doses vitamin C acts as a vitamin. In high doses it acts as a pharmaceutical. "All these theories and promising observations in animals have to be taken into clinical trials to see if they translate. Some of the best, and most obvious, ideas in the world have fallen over when taken to clinical trial.
"I can accept that people feel greatly enthusiastic about it [vitamin C] and believe at least it won't do any harm," he says. "But that's not necessarily true."
Jameson says vitamin C is an antioxidant. "Therapeutic radiation works by generating free radicals in cells from oxygen. You need oxygen in the tissue to generate the free radicals that damage the DNA and cause cancer cells to die. Vitamin C will mop up those free radicals and stop the radiation working. It is potentially counteractive - you get less-toxic, but less- effective, treatment.
"So before people start using this wholesale with cancer treatments, we need to do a lot more research to ask if it in some way makes cancers less aggressive without compromising how well treatments are working. The last thing you want to do is cause cancers to stop growing when you are giving treatment that works best on cancers that are growing and dividing."
AN EXAMPLE of too much of a good thing being bad for you is a clinical trial of beta carotene, the strong coloured red-orange pigment and inactive form of vitamin A found in plants and fruits.
Jameson says a large Scandinavian clinical trial gave beta carotene from carrots, apricots and vitamin E to 30,000 men who smoked to see its effects on lung cancer. The men showed no benefits and those who had enough beta carotene in their blood before they started taking extra in the trial showed a higher rate of lung cancer. "So not only wasn't it effective," he said, "it was actively harmful. The best comment I heard off the back of that study was that 'nature packages things better than pharmaceutical companies' - and that includes nutriceuticals. The 'some is good so more must be better' [thinking] is not necessarily true. Similarly, just because something is 'natural' it must be harmless is not true."
Jameson acknowledges it is frustrating for cancer patients when he douses their excitement over a new study finding. "We say more research is needed and that is a very slow, painstaking process because we want to continue to get outcomes for people, with fewer side effects and better results overall, and these things take a long time, many years and a lot of money."
But Jameson is frustrated too - by people who recommend high doses of intravenous vitamin C "without systematically gathering the data on what happens to the people they are treating, how effective it is, and if it helped in any particular way".
"Without that data, we don't know if it's helping, hindering or having any effect at all. There's a huge lack of good quality data and anecdotes don't cut it . . . you, as a patient, don't know which is the best treatment option for you, and I, as an oncologist, don't know if there are any options out there for you that are better than I have to offer. I'm on a salary, I get no commissions for supplying you with certain treatments. So if the guy down the road giving you intravenous vitamin C can get better results than I can achieve . . . I'm very happy for people to do that. But without the data I can recommend only what I know.
"The bottom line is people are investing their time, hope and money in a huge variety of treatments and unless each of us collects data, we are not serving our patients properly."
For that matter, does Jameson track what happens to his former patients after treatment? Apparently yes - by updating his database every six months from the national register of deaths. He also compares Waikato Regional Cancer Centre treatment results against international models.
REEDER SAYS Jameson's call is valid. He would "love" to be able to produce more robust data about vitamin C results from his practice but he does not have the resources. He can only refer people with cancer to 50 years of international collective observations, writings, and clinical studies about its efficacy - and his own observations of patients. "Vitamin C isn't expensive, so there aren't commercial sponsors [of clinical trials]. We will never get studies done."
Reeder does not claim vitamin C is a cure for cancer. "It is a useful adjunctive therapy." He prescribes vitamin C in intravenous as well as oral form, as part of a support treatment regime for cancer patients. He says he does not advocate high doses at the peak of mainstream treatment and encourages patients to discuss the vitamin C option with their cancer specialists. Intravenous vitamin C treatments are $170 each. Reeder recommends up to three a week for two to three months, reducing, depending on the results, to one a week and then an oral course, which costs "a few dollars a day". The treatments are not subsidised.
Reeder says vitamin C protects normal cells from the toxic blast of chemotherapy drugs and effects of radiation, reduces pain and side effects from mainstream cancer treatments, lifts wellbeing and assists healing. It is a powerful support for the immune system, an anti-stress nutrient, an anti- toxin and a "universal" therapy for relieving many chronic illnesses because of its anti-toxin effects, he says.
Reeder concedes that massive doses of vitamin C can produce a "pro- oxidant" effect - considered a "bad thing by mainstream medicine". But he says researchers have also discovered that heavy doses can cause the body to release hydrogen peroxide which is "lethal" to cancer cells, without being too harmful to normal cells.
"A lot of international clinics use vitamin C right through [mainstream treatment] and say there is no evidence of harm, in fact they say it increases the benefits. Others of us are more conservative." High doses of vitamin C can produce gastric side effects but a new highly absorbent delivery mechanism now available counters these successfully.
Reeder says his patients with cancer report feeling much better and "anecdotally, survival seems to be better long term". His dearest wish is for an institute - "a centre of excellence for integrated cancer support" - to be established in New Zealand, where cancer therapists in mainstream and complementary medicine work alongside each other, running trials and studies "to find the truth".
http://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/40262 ... -hindrance
|Author:||kenobewan [ Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:55 am ]|
Study linking calcium to heart attack risk flawed, says doctor
(NaturalNews) A recent study published in the British Journal of Medicine claims that people who supplement with calcium are at an increased risk of having a heart attack. But Dr. Steven Joyal, MD, President of Scientific and Medical Affairs at the Life Extension Foundation, says that the study is completely flawed and misleading, and that calcium is a vital nutrient for preventing heart problems.
In a rebuttal, Dr. Joyal explains why the methodology used in the study was flawed, and why calcium supplementation is actually highly beneficial in preventing heart attacks, especially when used together with vitamin D, vitamin K and magnesium.
According to Dr. Joyal's analysis, study authors excluded participants who took vitamin D and magnesium in conjunction with calcium, which skewed the results. These two nutrients work together with calcium to protect bone health. Most of those included as part of the study, though they were taking some level of calcium, were deficient in vitamin D, and vitamin D deficiency increases cardiovascular risk. None of these factors were made plain in the study paper.
Dr. Joyal also emphasizes that study authors conveniently eliminated many of the studies directly linking calcium intake to reduced cardiovascular events. Even when taken alone, calcium has been shown to be beneficial to heart health. But these studies were not included as part of the official paper, either.
Scientific experiments have shown that people who are calcium deficient actually have a 170 percent increased rate of blood vessel calcification, which is a factor in causing heart problems. Those who supplement with calcium, on the other hand, reduce their calcification levels by 62 percent.
http://www.naturalnews.com/029486_flawe ... study.html
[comment - one of the best sources of calcium is bean curd/tofu]
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Aug 18, 2010 11:27 am ]|
B Vitamins and the Aging Brain Examined
ScienceDaily (Aug. 17, 2010) — B vitamins-B-6, B-12 and folate-all nourish the brain. But much remains to be discovered about the relation between these essential nutrients and our brainpower.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutritionist Lindsay H. Allen has collaborated in ongoing research that has taken a closer look at the role these nutrients may play in preventing decline in brain function. The investigations, led by Mary N. Haan of the University of California-San Francisco, are part of the multiyear Sacramento (Calif.) Area Latino Study on Aging, or "SALSA." Begun in 1996, the study attracted nearly 1,800 Hispanic seniors, ages 60 to 101, as volunteers.
According to Allen, the research is needed because many studies of B vitamins and brain function have given inconsistent or conflicting results. Allen is director of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Western Human Nutrition Research Center in Davis, Calif. ARS is the chief intramural scientific research agency of USDA. Scientists from the University of California-Davis (UCD) and the UCD Medical Center also are collaborating in the research.
An analysis of volunteers' blood samples showed that lower levels of one B vitamin, folate, were associated with symptoms of dementia and poor brain function, also called "cognitive decline," as determined by standard tests of memory and other factors. The impairments were detectable even though less than 1 percent of the volunteers were actually deficient in folate.
In women, but not men, low levels of folate were associated with symptoms of depression. In fact, female volunteers whose plasma folate levels were in the lowest third were more than twice as likely to have symptoms of depression as volunteers in the highest third. That finding provided new evidence of an association between lower blood folate and depression. Depression is already known to affect brain function.
In research with vitamin B-12, the SALSA team determined that a protein known as holoTC, short for holotranscobalamin, might be key to a new approach for detecting cognitive decline earlier and more accurately.
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 134302.htm
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Sep 01, 2010 9:47 am ]|
Selenium May Protect Against Bladder Cancer
Aug. 31, 2010 -- Adding more selenium to your diet may reduce your risk of bladder cancer.
Scientists reporting in the September issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention say that adults with low blood levels of the mineral selenium are more likely to develop bladder cancer. The lower your levels of selenium, the higher your risk.
Selenium is a trace mineral found in soil. Dietary sources of selenium include plant foods and meats from animals that grazed on grain or plants grown in selenium-rich soil. The nutrient is also found in certain nuts. For example, brazil nuts often contain an abundance of selenium.
The body uses selenium to make selenoproteins. Many selenoproteins function as antioxidants, which prevent cellular damage. Some studies have suggested that selenium can help protect against certain cancers, but clinical trials on selenium supplementation have yielded conflicting results.
For the current study, Nuria Malats, MD, PhD, leader of the Genetic and Molecular Epidemiology Group of the Human Cancer Genetics Program at the Spanish National Cancer Research Center, and colleagues combined information from seven previously published studies to conduct their research. They reviewed selenium levels taken from blood samples and toenail clippings and determined each patient's risk of developing bladder cancer. The analysis included patients mostly from the United States and some patients from Europe.
Selenium and Bladder Cancer
The study showed:
- A 39% decrease in bladder cancer risk was associated with the highest levels of selenium.
- The protective benefit of selenium was seen mostly in women. Researchers believe this may be because of differences in how men and women's bodies break down and remove the mineral.
“Although our results suggest a beneficial effect of high selenium intake for bladder cancer risk, more studies are needed to confirm these findings before an enforcement of high selenium intake is recommended,” Malats says in a news release.
The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for selenium for adults is 55 micrograms per day. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding may require higher amounts. Most American diets provide the recommended amount of the mineral, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Before adding more selenium to your diet, talk to your doctor. Too much selenium can be unhealthy and may lead to a condition called selenosis. Symptoms include stomach upset, hair loss, garlic breath odor, white spots on the nails, irritability, fatigue, and mild nerve damage. The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences says the highest amount of selenium that adults can take safely without endangering their health is 400 micrograms a day. This is called the tolerable upper intake level (UL).
http://www.webmd.com/cancer/bladder-can ... der-cancer
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Sep 15, 2010 11:16 am ]|
B Vitamins Slow Brain Atrophy in People With Memory Problems
ScienceDaily (Sep. 12, 2010) — Daily tablets of certain B vitamins can halve the rate of brain shrinkage in elderly people who suffer from mild memory problems, an Oxford University study has shown.
The two-year randomised clinical trial is the largest to study the effect of B vitamins on mild cognitive impairment, and one of the first disease-modifying trials in the Alzheimer's field to show positive results in people.
Around 1 in 6 elderly people over the age of 70 has mild cognitive impairment, experiencing problems with memory, language, or other mental functions, but not to a degree that interferes with daily life. Around half of people with mild cognitive impairment go on to develop dementia -- mainly Alzheimer's disease -- within five years of diagnosis.
Certain B vitamins -- folic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 -- are known to control levels of the amino acid homocysteine in the blood, and high levels of homocysteine are associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer's.
So the Oxford team set out to see whether supplements of the B vitamins that lower homocysteine could slow the higher rate of brain shrinkage, or atrophy, observed in mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer's.
The study followed 168 volunteers aged 70 or over with mild memory problems, half of whom took high dose B vitamin tablets for two years and the other half a placebo tablet. The researchers assessed disease progression in this group by using MRI scans to measure the brain atrophy rate over a two-year period. The findings are published in the journal PLoS ONE.
The team found that on average the brains of those taking the folic acid, vitamin B6 and B12 treatment shrank at a rate of 0.76% a year, while those in the placebo group had a mean brain shrinkage rate of 1.08%. People with the highest levels of homocysteine benefited most, showing atrophy rates on treatment that were half of those on placebo.
Along with rate of brain shrinkage, the team from the Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Ageing (OPTIMA) also monitored cognitive test scores, revealing that those with the slowest rate of shrinkage scored more strongly.
The team suggests that, since the rate of brain atrophy is known to be more rapid in those with mild cognitive impairment who go on to develop Alzheimer's, it is possible that the vitamin treatment could slow down the development of the disease. Clinical trials to test this should now be carried out, they add.
'It is our hope that this simple and safe treatment will delay the development of Alzheimer's disease in many people who suffer from mild memory problems,' said Professor David Smith of the Department of Pharmacology at Oxford University, a co-leader of the trial. 'Today there are about 1.5 million elderly in UK, 5 million in USA and 14 million in Europe with such memory problems.
'These are immensely promising results but we do need to do more trials to conclude whether these particular B vitamins can slow or prevent development of Alzheimer's. So I wouldn't yet recommend that anyone getting a bit older and beginning to be worried about memory lapses should rush out and buy vitamin B supplements without seeing a doctor,' he said.
Rebecca Wood, Chief Executive of the Alzheimer's Research Trust, which co-funded the study, said: 'These are very important results, with B vitamins now showing a prospect of protecting some people from Alzheimer's in old age. The strong findings must inspire an expanded trial to follow people expected to develop Alzheimer's, and we hope for further success.
'We desperately need to support research into dementia, to help avoid the massive increases of people living with the condition as the population ages. Research is the only answer to what remains the greatest medical challenge of our time.'
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 213050.htm
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Sep 22, 2010 3:06 pm ]|
Resveratrol Prevents Brain and Heart Damage While Assisting Weight Loss
(NaturalNews) Resveratrol is the protective bioactive nutrient most commonly found in the skin of red grapes, peanuts and cacao. Resveratrol provides a protective barrier against disease and fungus in plants which is also beneficial to human health. A wealth of information exists to support the function of resveratrol for brain rejuvenation and cardiovascular repair as well as influencing the metabolism of fat leading to natural weight loss.
Resveratrol Improves Endothelial Function Leading to Heart Health
Proanthocyanidins from the grape family have long been associated with heart health, and resveratrol now takes its deserved place at the top of the cardiovascular friendly nutrients list. The lining of the cells within the artery are known as the endothelium, and are very sensitive to dietary abuse caused by hydrogenated fats, excess sugar, cortisol and insulin. Damage to the endothelium leads to high blood pressure as well as micro cracks which are filled with foamy plaque, increasing the risk of a heart attack.
Resveratrol has been shown to increase endothelial progenitor cells in the bone marrow which then migrate to areas of damage along the arterial wall, effectively repairing any damage. Higher levels of progenitor cells in blood circulation are associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and heart attack, as well as improved blood pressure.
Resveratrol Activates New Brain Synapses
One of the most important functions attributed to resveratrol is the activation of the anti-aging gene known as SIRT1. Previously, calorie restriction was the only known mechanism thought to positively influence this critical gene, but recent research demonstrates that resveratrol is also able to accomplish this longevity function. Since resveratrol is able to cross the blood-brain barrier, it is able to improve brain plasticity by generating new neural networks.
Resveratrol has been shown to reduce the normal rate of neurodegeneration and prevent learning impairment. Further, resveratrol has been shown to increase brain oxygenation which relates to increased memory capacity and improved cognition. Researchers are exploring the possibility that this amazing nutrient may play a role in the prevention of certain dementias, including Alzheimer`s disease.
Resveratrol Inhibits the Formation of Fat Cells, Assists Weight Loss
Resveratrol has been shown to halt the formation of baby fat cells, thus providing an effective tool for the millions of people looking for a natural weight loss aide. Researchers demonstrated that fat cells make SIRT1 in direct proportion to the amount of resveratrol they are exposed to. SIRT1 halts the formation of immature fat cells which as they grow, contribute to the accumulation of dangerous abdominal fat.
Resveratrol also lowers levels of systemic inflammation, which is implicated in many afflictions including heart disease, diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer`s disease, and inhibits the release of body fat from storage. Studies underscore the importance of resveratrol as an important tool in the fight against obesity and show that it can provide favorable metabolic stability to assist weight loss.
It`s rare when one specific nutritional compound is attributed with the potential to lower the risk of multiple disease processes and assist weight loss. Resveratrol continues to fill the promise of cardiovascular and neurologic health, as it directly influences the anti-aging SIRT1 gene, and provides support in the battle against obesity. Health conscious individuals will use this critical nutrient in a never ending battle to provide an edge against time, ageing and cellular deterioration.
http://www.naturalnews.com/029797_resve ... amage.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:25 am ]|
Natural Supplement Found Superior to Prescription Antidepressants
(NaturalNews) According to two recent studies, the natural dietary supplement SAMe (S-adenosyl-L-methionine) can be more effective than prescription antidepressants in relieving depression, including severe depression. One study had subjects take either SAMe or a prescription antidepressant while the other one had one group of subjects take SAMe along with an antidepressant and the other group take only the antidepressant. Both studies returned favorable results for SAMe.
In one four-week study at the University of California, Irvine 17 subjects who were suffering from severe depression were randomly divided into groups which took either 1600 mg of SAMe daily or a popular prescription antidepressant. At the end of the study, 62% of those taking SAMe experienced symptom relief, while only 50% of the other group had any type of favorable response.
Another study which was just concluded by researchers at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital picked 73 adults with depression who were not responding to prescription antidepressants. All the subjects continued to take their antidepressants. However, 39 of them were randomly selected to receive SAMe, while the remaining 34 were given a placebo.
After six weeks of treatment, 36% of the patients taking SAMe, together with their antidepressant, showed improvement, while only 18% of those taking their antidepressants in combination with a placebo made any progress. Approximately 26% of the patients taking a combination of SAMe and their antidepressant had their symptoms completely disappear, compared to 12% in the placebo group.
The study findings provide important evidence of the value of natural options to dangerous and often ineffective prescription medications in treating depression, as well as finding new clues as to its cause. Notably, other studies have indicated that antidepressants do not work in over half of depressed patients.
SAMe is a natural chemical that is produced in the liver, and is a metabolite of the amino acid L-methionine. This chemical is found throughout the body, especially the brain, adrenal glands, and liver. Playing an important role in vital bodily functions, it helps to maintain cell membranes, stabilizes neurotransmitters (dopamine and serotonin) in the brain, and helps remove toxins in our bodies.
SAMe should be taken in conjunction with B complex vitamins, especially vitamin B12 and folic acid. These vitamins are required for proper synthesis of SAMe and deficiencies in these vitamins can result in low concentrations of methionine throughout the nervous system. Researchers also suggest that taking supplemental B6, B12, and folic acid decreases the risk of other disorders, such as cardiovascular disease, by helping to metabolize homocysteine.
Although SAMe is mostly associated with treating depression, it can also be effective when treating a wide variety of ailments, such as dementia, Alzheimer's disease, migraine headaches, osteoarthritis, bursitis, tendonitis, chronic low back pain, fibromyalgia, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, spinal chord injuries, and liver disease. It can also be effective in treating lead poisoning and may slow the aging process.
The best way to introduce SAMe is to start at the lowest dose and, if necessary, gradually increase the dosage. Evidence suggests that improvements in symptoms can be seen in as little as two weeks.
Important Notes: Even though SAMe and antidepressants were used together in the Harvard study, it is not recommended to take the two together. Under certain circumstances, this type of combination could cause an overload of serotonin in the brain. In addition, SAMe should not be used by individuals suffering from bipolar disorder, as SAMe can trigger manic episodes and anxiety in people suffering from bipolar disorder.
http://www.naturalnews.com/029867_antid ... ments.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Fri Oct 01, 2010 9:46 am ]|
Age related hearing loss halted with folate nutrient
(NaturalNews) Hearing loss is the most common sensory disorder in the United States, and more than 36 million Americans have lost some of their hearing. Mostly, hearing loss is blamed on getting older. But evidence is accumulating that the real culprit could be a lack of B vitamins -- especially folate.
For example, in 2007 scientists from Wageningen University in the Netherlands studied 728 men and women between the ages of 50 and 70 and found that by taking folic acid supplements, age-related hearing loss in the low frequency range was significantly delayed. Then, at last year's American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting in San Diego, a Boston-based research team discussed evidence showing that when men over the age of 60 had a high folate intake from foods and/or vitamins, they decreased their risk of losing their hearing by 20%.
Now a new study, dubbed the Blue Mountains Hearing Study and headed by scientists at the University of Sydney in Australia, has revealed yet another important link between folate and hearing. The researchers found that when people have low levels of the B vitamin in their blood, they have a significantly increased risk of hearing loss. The research was recently published in The Journal of Nutrition.
The study, which involved researchers from several Australian universities, looked at 2,956 people age 50 and up. Blood levels of vitamin B-12, folate and homocysteine were measured and then compared to the amount of hearing loss in the research subjects. The results? People with low levels of folate (below 11 nanomoles per liter) had a 34% increased risk of hearing loss.
What's more, elevated levels of the amino acid homocysteine (over 20 micromoles per liter) were linked to a 64% increase in the risk of hearing loss. Excess levels of homocysteine have previously been associated with an increased risk of heart disease and memory problems. Too much homocysteine is also believed to disrupt normal blood flow to the inner ear -- which could possibly explain the homocysteine and hearing loss connection. And a body of earlier research has concluded adequate B vitamin levels are associated with normal homocysteine levels in the blood.
NaturalNews has previously reported on other ways folate is important to maintaining and protecting health. For example, studies show it may protect from breast cancer (http://www.naturalnews.com/027588_f...) and help prevent memory loss, too (http://www.naturalnews.com/012163.html).
http://www.naturalnews.com/029900_heari ... olate.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:03 am ]|
Coenzyme Q10 Boosts Energy, Promotes Heart Health and Assists Weight Loss
(NaturalNews) Coenzyme Q10 is an amazing chemical cofactor which is required by every cell in the body to produce the energy we need to live. It`s been shown to increase the level of energy to all muscles and is especially important to cardiac function as it increases energy production at an optimal rate. Coenzyme Q10 provides the necessary energy to fuel our immune system, as it mounts an attack against invading pathogens and improves the release of fat from storage by improving oxygen utilization. Our production of CoQ10 decreases as we age so it`s necessary to supplement with the correct form of this enzyme to achieve the important health benefits.
Boost Energy and Improve Heart Health
The primary unit of energy used by the mitochondria of our cells is known as ATP, and Coenzyme Q10 is the only chemical facilitator which can be used by the body to make this critical fuel. A shortage of this coenzyme means our muscles don`t function efficiently and the aging process is accelerated. Coenzyme Q10 is also a powerful antioxidant which has been shown to influence arterial elasticity.
The results of a study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism show that combining Coenzyme Q10 with other powerful antioxidants including Vitamins C, E and selenium significantly improved an array of cardiovascular risk factors including arterial function, blood pressure, blood sugar and protective HDL cholesterol. Billions of dollars are spent annually on pharmaceuticals which are largely ineffective at improving cardio biomarkers and have the potential to wreak havoc throughout the body.
Provides Critical Energy for Strong Immune System Function
Our immune system requires considerable energy to combat potentially lethal pathogens and rogue cancer cells. Coenzyme Q10 has been found to help boost our immune system when an invader is detected. The coenzyme works at the cellular level by providing critical support for our natural killer cells which are the first line of defense in detecting and removing viral and bacterial invaders.
Coenzyme Q10 has also been shown to lower levels of damaging systemic inflammation by down regulating the secretion of chemicals (NF-kappaB) which lower our immune response. Researchers have shown that increasing blood levels of the coenzyme can raise antibody response by 57% which improves the time it takes for our immune system to respond to an invader.
Burn More Fat and Assist Weight Loss Efforts
Coenzyme Q10 provides needed energy to improve the effectiveness of exercise as it increases oxygen utilization and fat metabolism. By improving the efficiency of how raw energy components are converted into ATP, coenzyme Q10 stimulates metabolic rate and controls how quickly fat is released from our white adipose tissue. Researchers have found that combining Coenzyme Q10 with regular aerobic exercise significantly increases fat release compared with just exercise alone.
The importance of Coenzyme Q10 to human health has been confirmed by a large number of scientifically validated studies. Benefits include improved cardiovascular and immune system health from the nutrient's ability to lower inflammation, increase antioxidant status and assist metabolic function. Most adults need to supplement with 100 mg each day to improve health and dramatically lower disease risk.
http://www.naturalnews.com/030178_CoQ10 ... ealth.html
[Coenzyme Q10 in food
Where is Coenzyme Q10 found? Coenzyme Q10 is primarily found in fish and meat. Our bodies are able to produce some of the CoQ10 that we need. The rest is synthesized from the foods we eat. The highest dietary sources of Coenzyme Q10 come from - in descending order according to content - fresh sardines and mackerel, the heart, liver and meat of beef, lamb and pork along with eggs. There are plenty of vegetable sources of Coenzyme Q10, the richest being spinach, broccoli, peanuts, wheat germ and whole grains - in that order, although the amount is significantly smaller than that found in meats. Also, it is important to note that these foods must be raw, fresh and unprocessed - no milling, canning, preserving, freezing, etc., plus grown/produced in an unpolluted environment to be considered viable sources.
http://www.healingdaily.com/detoxificat ... me-q10.htm ]
|Author:||kenobewan [ Wed Nov 03, 2010 9:19 am ]|
Resveratrol and grape seed extract fight against heart disease, dementia and aging
(NaturalNews) It`s important to understand that many of the top 10 killer diseases have one metabolic factor in common. Heart disease, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer`s disease and the process of aging are all accelerated by wild blood sugar swings that lead to insulin resistance. Humans have not evolved to consume a diet of unnatural processed chemicals, sugar, salt and hydrogenated fats. Eating foods composed of these artificially manufactured substances affects the biochemical and electrical function of our genes and cells that lead to disease. In addition to following a predominately raw diet, health conscious individuals can complement their healthy lifestyle with natural grape seed extract and resveratrol to reap multi-modal risk reduction.
Blood Sugar and Insulin Resistance at the Root of the Problem
When we`re young our body has many mechanisms to combat the blood sugar surges caused by a diet high in refined carbohydrates and sugar. The pancreas pumps out healthy quantities of insulin that effectively mop up excess blood sugar to prevent damage to arteries and vital organs. Since blood sugar doesn`t remain in circulation it isn`t easily converted to triglycerides and stored as body fat.
Eventually around age 35 our pancreatic function begins to decline; either it loses the ability to secrete enough insulin or the insulin becomes ineffective at lowering sugar in the blood. The result is too much sugar and signals the beginning of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, many cancers and obesity.
Resveratrol and Grape Seed Extract Protect the Heart
Nature provides powerful compounds found in the skin of red grapes known as proanthocyanidins that have been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and promote heart health. Resveratrol and grape seed extract have been shown to provide critical antioxidant support to the heart muscle.
In a study reported in the journal Nature, researchers demonstrated that grape compounds were able to break down anti-glycation end products that form as a result of high blood sugar levels. AGE`s are known to damage the delicate inner endothelial lining of the coronary arteries setting the stage for heart disease and a heart attack.
Grape Compounds Cross the Blood-Brain Barrier to Improve Brain Health
The underlying cause of dementia and Alzheimer`s disease is rapidly emerging as high blood sugar and insulin resistance in the brain. The results of a study published in the journal Neurology found that the formation of abnormal plaque and tangles in the brain was the result of both elevated blood sugar and insulin levels. Proteins must fold into precise structures to effectively remove plaque buildup and this is inhibited by high glucose and insulin.
Researchers have known that resveratrol and grape seed extract have the unique ability to cross the blood-brain barrier and provide protection to an aging brain. Studies confirm that grape compounds are able to prevent damaging amyloid proteins from folding into structures that lead to dementia and Alzheimer`s disease.
Resveratrol and grape seed extract are yet another example of how nutrients provided by nature help to prevent disease in man. These compounds take their rightful place next to vitamin D, vitamin C, vitamin K and Omega-3 fats as essential components to our health. Health minded people will ensure they consume enough of these powerful nutrients either from diet or supplementation to ensure a long and disease-free life.
http://www.naturalnews.com/030250_resve ... sease.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:21 am ]|
Super nutrient shown to stop cancer in its tracks
(NaturalNews) The second leading cause of death in the US is a preventable disease caused by a damaging diet of processed foods and poor lifestyle choices. Having seen family members and friends succumb to the disease, many people view cancer as inevitable and believe there is little they can do to protect themselves from the `Big C`. Our body is continually under assault from rogue cancer cells that are detected and controlled by our innate immune system. Eventually a diet of sugary processed foods and regular contact with household toxins wear down our natural defenses allowing cancer to proliferate. Vitamin K is a critical nutrient that has been shown effective in preventing a number of cancer cell lines with no toxic side effects.
Typical Diet is Grossly Deficient in Vitamin K
Since its discovery nearly 80 years ago, Vitamin K has been viewed merely as a nutrient necessary for proper blood coagulation. Research over the past decade has shown that this vitamin is essential to many functions necessary to promote ideal health.
Vitamin K1 is the most common form of the vitamin found in fresh vegetables and leafy greens and must be converted to K2 in the intestines to be available for use by our cells. K2 is only found in naturally produced cheeses and natto. Since most diets are deficient in vegetables, very little is available for conversion to the active type shown effective in cancer prevention.
Study Confirms Cancer Fighting Power of Vitamin K
Small quantities of vitamin K are required for normal blood clotting. New research is emerging to confirm the amazing cancer prevention and treatment benefits associated with larger doses of this super nutrient. The results of a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition show that those individuals with the highest intakes of vitamin K2 had the lowest risk of developing cancer and a 30% reduction in cancer mortality. Due to poor availability in the diet, most people will need to supplement with K2 to achieve full benefit.
Ensure You Have Sufficient Vitamin K2
Experts warn that nearly 100% of those tested have low Vitamin K levels circulating in their blood. In addition to the cancer fighting ability associated with the vitamin, research has shown that K2 lowers the risk of heart disease and heart attack as it helps clear plaque-forming calcium from the blood. Millions of people are at increased risk of cancer as well as cardiovascular disease.
Eating plenty of raw vegetables and greens will ensure you have plenty of vitamin K1 that`s needed to form clots. K1 can be converted to K2 by bacteria in the digestive tract, although this process is inefficient and doesn`t reliably increase blood saturation. Pre-formed K2 is found naturally in only a handful of foods such as cheese curd and fermented natto. Many people find these foods difficult to tolerate and need to take an inexpensive supplement with food to attain optimal health benefits.
Researchers note that vitamin K and vitamin D work synergistically to promote health and prevent disease. Both nutrients work together to increase the production of a protein (Matrix GLA Protein) that helps protect blood vessels from calcification. Therefore it`s important to obtain both vitamins through diet, sun exposure or supplementation and dramatically lower your risk of cancer and heart disease.
|Author:||kenobewan [ Tue Jan 11, 2011 4:15 pm ]|
Resveratrol and quercetin tame inflammation and prevent insulin resistance
(NaturalNews) Resveratrol is a natural nutrient found most notably in the skin of red grapes, and quercetin is a prominent compound in apples and onions. Research continues to mount providing evidence that these protective nutrients can help squelch the flames of systemic inflammation that are at the root of many chronic diseases. Further evidence exists to confirm the effective properties of resveratrol and quercetin in restoring normal insulin function that can lower the risk from metabolic conditions including diabetes. Health-minded individuals will want to ensure they consume resveratrol and quercetin in their diet or use supplemental resources to attain proper levels in blood circulation and lower disease risk.
Resveratrol and Quercetin Control Disease at the Genetic Level
Resveratrol and quercetin have been shown to alter levels of inflammation by interacting with DNA sequences at the genetic level. The two super nutrients influence production of the inflammatory marker TNF-a and can help to prevent systemic inflammation and insulin resistance.
The results of a study conducted at Boston University Medical Center showed that resveratrol and quercetin are capable of influencing gene expression and have a direct impact on human health. The researchers concluded "the role of phytochemicals acting as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents could be extremely important in inflammation associated chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer."
Resveratrol Controls Anti-Inflammatory Genes
Resveratrol is known to interfere with the NF-kappaB signaling pathway and to exert a powerful anti-inflammatory signal that can calm the slow burning flames that contribute to most chronic diseases. Diabetes damage is caused when free radicals attack pancreatic beta cells leading to reduced levels of insulin secretion.
The result of a study published in the journal Diabetes shows that resveratrol is able to influence the regulating gene SIRT1; this helps to protect the pancreas and improve insulin response. This action of resveratrol can help to prevent the damage caused by a high sugar diet and the metabolic disorders that can result. In addition, resveratrol can help protect against heart disease by providing critical support for the endothelial lining of the coronary arteries.
Quercetin Lowers Inflammation That Triggers Heart Disease
Quercetin is highly concentrated in foods such as onions, apples, red wine and green tea. The Institute of Food Research found that the compound was able to prevent chronic inflammation, which can lead to thickening of the arteries.
The researchers determined that quercetin influences the process that causes instability to the coronary artery walls by attenuating the inflammatory process. The study authors found that nutrients such as quercetin lower the incidence of heart disease and stroke and provide important clues as to why a diet rich in fruits and vegetables reduces the risk of these conditions.
Resveratrol and quercetin demonstrate the importance of obtaining natural nutrients from whole foods. These compounds have been shown to lower levels of systemic inflammation and to improve the flow of insulin in response to digested sugars. Health conscious individuals eating a diet full of raw vegetables and leafy greens will benefit from healthy quantities of quercetin. It may be necessary to supplement with resveratrol to ensure optimal blood levels for ideal health.
http://www.naturalnews.com/030957_resve ... ation.html
[comment - I take both of these daily]
|Author:||kenobewan [ Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:14 pm ]|
B vitamins proven to slow progression of dementia, Alzheimer's
(NaturalNews) Mega-doses of B vitamins may significantly slow brain shrinkage and slow the progression of dementia, according to a study conducted by researchers from Oxford University and published in the journal PLoS One.
"This is a very dramatic and striking result," lead researcher David Smith said. "It's much more than we could have predicted."
"It is our hope that this simple and safe treatment will delay development of Alzheimer's in many people who suffer from mild memory problems."
Researchers assigned 168 people suffering from mild cognitive impairment to take either a placebo or a pill containing 15 times the recommended daily dose of vitamin B6, four times the recommended dose of B9 and 300 times the recommended dose of B12. These vitamins are known to lower levels of the amino acid homocysteine, which has been linked to Alzheimer's disease.
Approximately 50 percent of people who suffer from mild cognitive impairment eventually develop a more severe form of dementia.
On average, the brains of patients taking the vitamins shrank at half the rate of those taking a placebo. The benefit was most pronounced in patients whose homocysteine levels were high at the start of the study.
An estimated 35 million people around the world suffer from dementia, including 26.6 million with Alzheimer's disease. In the United States, Alzheimer's rates are estimated at 1.2 percent of the general population, climbing to as high as 42 percent of those older than 84.
"Clearly, in the Western World, dementia is not a rare problem," write doctors Abram Hoffer and Harold D. Foster in Feel Better, Live Longer with Vitamin B-3.
"Indeed, R. Katzman and colleagues have argued that in people more than 75 years of age, new cases of dementia occur as frequently as myocardial infarction and twice as often as stroke."
The authors note that Hoffman has been prescribing vitamin B3 to patients who show preliminary signs of age-related cognitive impairment since 1955.
http://www.naturalnews.com/031022_demen ... amins.html
|Author:||kenobewan [ Thu Feb 24, 2011 3:14 pm ]|
This amazing nutrient reduces Alzheimer`s plaque formation by ninety percent
(NaturalNews) Alzheimer`s disease is a devastating condition that is characterized by the formation of protein amyloid plaques that attack the neural synapses and prevent normal chemical and electrical signaling activity in the brain. Medical researchers aren`t certain if plaque is the cause of Alzheimer`s disease or a normal byproduct of cellular metabolism that remains behind to provoke the memory-robbing condition. The British Journal of Pharmacology provides evidence to explain how plaque is formed in the absence of friendly endothelial nitric oxide (eNOS) that disrupts blood pressure, lipid levels and glucose in the brain. Resveratrol can increase eNOS levels in the brain and lower the impact of deadly plaques seen in Alzheimer`s disease.
Friendly nitric oxide is essential to the proper function of our vascular system. eNOS allows vessels and arteries to contract and expand so blood can effectively circulate to deliver nutrients and oxygen throughout the body. When eNOS production is inhibited, blood pressure rises and problems with blood glucose and cholesterol metabolism become evident.
A current study in the journal PLoS ONE demonstrates that as plaque begins to accumulate at the neural synapses, eNOS production declines, compounding the problem. Free radicals multiply in the brain as a consequence of the increasing amyloid load and extensive damage to delicate brain structures essential to cognitive function and memory ensue.
Resveratrol is a natural protective compound found in high concentrations in red grapes, red wine, purple grape juice, peanuts, and some berries. The nutrient has been the subject of extensive research as it has been shown to mimic the effect of caloric restriction known to extend healthy life span. New evidence explains how resveratrol can reduce amyloid plaque burden in the aging brain.
Reporting in the journal Neurochemistry International, researchers have found that resveratrol activates an enzyme that helps make friendly eNOS and can break the plaque-formation cycle that is associated with the progression of Alzheimer`s disease. The researchers were able to show that resveratrol significantly inhibits plaque formation by as much as 90%.
The researchers concluded that their study "supports the concept that onset of neurodegenerative disease may be delayed or mitigated with use of dietary chemo-preventive agents that protect against beta-amyloid plaque formation and oxidative stress." This evidence provides further support to the protective nature of natural nutrients to prevent and halt the development of a host of deadly chronic diseases.
Along with resveratrol, research has demonstrated the power of blueberries and grape seed extract to lower the risks associated with brain aging and cognitive decline. Each nutrient targets the expression of specific genes responsible for the progression of dementia and memory-robbing illnesses. People with a familial history of cognitive disease or early onset symptoms should consider supplementing with 50 to 200 mg of resveratrol daily to prevent or reverse amyloid plaque development.
http://www.naturalnews.com/031465_Alzhe ... ntion.html
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