Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Monday, December 13, 2010
The study followed 64 overweight and obese people who were placed on a weight-stable diet for 10-weeks. The diet incorporated sucrose or high fructose corn syrup-sweetened low-fat milk, at 10% or 20% of calories. After 10 weeks, there was no change in body weight in the entire group. In addition, there were no changes in total cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL(low-density lipoprotein, often referred to as "bad" cholesterol), apolipoprotein B (elevated levels of APOProtein B represent an increased risk for heart disease), or mean LDLparticle size. Group assignment also had no effect on HDL(high-density lipoprotein, often referred to as "good" cholesterol). The research for this study was supported by a grant from the Corn Refiners Association (CRA).
Bonnie - I do give them credit. The CRA does not give up easily. They are a powerful lobby and have deep pockets. I wonder how they got this cardiologist to agree to a study with this few subjects and for such a short period of time. Maybe this doctor has not peered over the hundreds of studies, some of them then times the size of this study and over much longer periods of time showing the negative effects of HFCS.
Of the cardiologists surveyed, 80 percent say they try to eat a balanced diet; 57 percent of cardiologists report taking dietary supplements, at least seasonally—37 percent say they take them regularly; and 67 percent say they exercise regularly. Sixty-nine percent say they maintain a healthy weight; and 49 percent say that they regularly get a good night's sleep. Only 34 percent of cardiologists report visiting their own healthcare professional regularly. Sixty-six percent claim that they try to manage their stress levels.
Eighty-one percent of dermatologists surveyed report they try to eat a balanced diet. Seventy-five percent of dermatologists report using dietary supplements at least seasonally—59 percent say they use them regularly. Additionally, 70 percent say that they exercise regularly; 79 percent agree that they maintain a healthy weight; 64 percent report that they regularly get a good night's sleep. Only 56 percent of dermatologists say they visit their own healthcare professional regularly. Seventy-one percent say they try to manage their stress levels.
Eighty-four percent claim that they try to eat a balanced diet. Ninety-five percent of nurse practitioners report taking dietary supplements at least seasonally—71 percent claim doing so regularly. Sixty-four percent claim to exercise regularly. Nurse practitioners try to manage their stress level, as reported by 86 percent of those surveyed; 76 percent say that they regularly visit their own healthcare professional; while 63 percent, claim to get a good night's sleep. Only 59 percent of nurse practitioners say they maintain a healthy weight.
Eighty-one percent say they try to eat a balanced diet; 80 percent of Ob/Gyns report taking supplements, including 56 percent who say they use them regularly. When it comes to engaging in regular exercise, 68 percent claim to do so. Sixty-eight percent of Ob/Gyns also report that they maintain a healthy weight. Only 57 percent report getting a good night's sleep, and slightly more than half (51 percent) say that they visit their own healthcare professional regularly.
Seventy-seven percent claim that they try to eat a balanced diet; 75 percent of orthopedists say they use dietary supplements at least seasonally, with 50 percent saying they use them regularly. Sixty-nine percent say they exercise regularly. Sixty-nine percent also report that they maintain a healthy weight. When it comes to managing their stress levels, eight out of 10 orthopedists (80 percent)report doing so. Orthopedists are less likely to get a good night's sleep (56 percent report that they do) and visit their own healthcare professional regularly (40 percent report doing so).
Of the pharmacists surveyed, 76 percent report that they try to eat a balanced diet. Eighty-six percent of pharmacists use dietary supplements at least seasonally, and 62 percent say they take them regularly. Fifty-six percent claim that they exercise regularly. More than three quarters—77 percent—of pharmacists say they try to manage their stress levels. Seventy-five percent report visiting their own healthcare professional regularly and 67 percent claim they maintain a healthy weight. Sixty-five percent report regularly getting a good night's sleep.
PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS*
A good majority of primary care physicians say that they try to eat a balanced diet (80 percent); and while only 48 percent of primary care physicians report regular use of supplements, 71 percent say they use them at least seasonally. Seventy-one percent of primary care physicians report that they exercise regularly. Interestingly, only 40 percent of primary care physicians report visiting their own healthcare professional regularly and 68 percent maintain a healthy weight. Sixty-three percent of primary care physicians say that they get a good night's sleep.
Steve - this is a good time to remind you that we do not recommend Rolaids or its equivalents as antacids or calcium supplements. The calcium, in carbonate form, is very poorly absorbed. These products also block the absorption of key nutrients.
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
In a Nutrition Journal study, researchers aimed to investigate the correlation of the effects of co-incubation of coenzyme Q10 and N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC) on intracellular H2O2 content and Matrix Metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2) activity in MCF-7 cell line. The results showed that both coenzyme Q10 and N-acetyl-L-cysteine reduce MMP-2 activity along with the pro-oxidant capacity of the MCF-7 cell in a dose proportionate manner. Collectively, the present study highlights the significance of Coenzyme Q10 effect on the cell invasion/metastasis effecter molecules.
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
- Fresh fruits and vegetables are considered free. However, fruit juice, dried fruit, and starchy vegetables are not free.
- The importance of protein and fiber for fullness and warding off hunger.
- The body has to work harder to metabolize protein and healthy fat, thus revving up metabolism.
We would warn Mr. Walsh that it does not have to be a black and white issue. While we do not dispute that aspirin can be effective in some individuals for certain chronic diseases, it can be devastating to others. Recent evidence, especially with heart disease and type 2 diabetes, have gone away from recommending aspirin in healthy individuals because its effectiveness does not outweigh the risk of adverse effects.
Mr. Walsh, you do not have to blindly take aspirin for the next 20-30 years without knowing if it is damaging to you (several people shared their horror stories in the comments section of his article). A simple, while expensive, genetic test can discover whether or not you can metabolize aspirin. A good portion of the human population unfortunately does not. So would it not be more responsible to have added this to your article for not just your own safety, but for that of your readers?
P.S. Confirmation of low-dose aspirin's side effects: A recent American Journal of Gastroenterology study found that overall, 42.2% of aspirin-treated subjects developed multiple erosions and/or ulcers. Gastroduodenal ulcers were observed in 17.6% of aspirin-treated subjects. Low-dose aspirin induced a surprisingly high incidence of acute gastroduodenal ulcers, highlighting that aspirin's upper GI risk begins early and may require gastroprotection.
On a positive note, the purpose of this study was to find a substance that could help reduce the ulcers. Researchers found the phospholipid, phospatidylcholine, when added to aspirin, significantly reduced mucosal damage. Only 22% of subjects developed multiple erosions/ulcers and only 5.1% had gastroduodenal ulcers.
Monday, December 06, 2010
Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA–2010–N–0001] Food Advisory Committee
This notice announces a forthcoming meeting of a public advisory committee of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The meeting will be open to the public. The meeting will be held on March 30 and 31, 2011, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Contact Person: Carolyn Jeletic, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (HFS–024), Food and Drug Administration, 5100 Paint Branch Pkwy., College Park, MD 20740, 301–436–1913 or FDA Advisory Committee Information Line, 1–800–741–8138 (301–443–0572 in the Washington, DC area), code 3014510564.
Interested persons may present data, information, or views, orally or in writing, on issues pending before the committee. Written submissions may be made to the contact person on or before March 23, 2011.
Arizona researchers studied tissue from a vulnerable part of the brain in 40 young adults who had died and donated their brains for research. 15 of the brain donors carried a common genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease, and 25 of the brain donors did not. With the exception of a person with two copies of the APOE4 gene, none of the deceased young adults had the microscopic abnormalities or elevated amyloid protein levels long associated with Alzheimer's disease. However, the activity of an enzyme known as cytochrome oxidase, an energy-making enzyme found in the mitochondria of brain cells, was slightly reduced in the group at increased genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease. "Our findings suggest that mitochondrial brain changes contribute to the risk of Alzheimer's disease," said the study's lead author.
Steve - as we reported earlier regarding the connection between autism and mitochondrial dysfunction, we see a pattern forming around the importance of optimal functioning mitochondria, or what we like to call the powerhouse of the cell. One nutrient we have know for a long time to be beneficial for mitochondria is Co-Enzyme Q10 (CoQ10).
Friday, December 03, 2010
GlaxoSmithKline formally terminated a clinical trial of an experimental drug designed to harness the potential health benefits of red wine, saying it had minimal efficacy in cancer patients and could potentially exacerbate kidney complications. The U.K. drug maker also reiterated that it isn't planning any further testing of the drug, SRT501, because it is focusing on other compounds designed to work similarly to SRT501 but which differ chemically. GlaxoSmithKline obtained SRT501 with its $720 million purchase of Sirtris Pharmaceuticals in 2008.
Overall, investigators found that symptoms and features of AD were reproduced or accelerated when mercury was introduced. As a result of these findings, the researchers called for "the removal of mercury from public and ecologic circuits and replacing it wherever possible by less toxic alternatives. This would be a sensible public health measure that is supported by the current data."
Of 40 studies that tested memory in individuals exposed to inorganic mercury, 32 found significant memory deficits. The study authors also note that some autopsy studies also revealed increased mercury levels in the brain tissue of AD patients.
"In vitro models showed that inorganic mercury reproduces all pathological changes seen in AD, and in animal models inorganic mercury produced changes that are similar to those see in AD," the study authors write.
Bonnie - this should not be a surprise for anyone who reads our blog consistently.
Wednesday, December 01, 2010
New York Times
- Eat before you go to a party, especially foods high in protein and healthy fats. Your blood sugar will be more stable so you won’t eat as much.
- Alcohol is loaded with calories. Try substituting with sparkling water or club soda (an added benefit is feeling more full with water so you won’t eat as much). The best advice is choosing non-alcoholic, low calorie beverages such as a virgin bloody Mary, fruit flavored tea, or flavored water (without sugar or sugar substitutes added). If you do consume alcohol, remember that alcohol may inhibit your ability to make smart food choices. Sip your drinks slowly. For each alcoholic beverage, have 8 oz. sparkling water or club soda in between. Add a small amount of lemon, lime, or other fruit juice to your water for added flavor.
- Don’t make a meal out of appetizers. Sample one or two, then wait for the main course. If fresh vegetables are served as appetizers, fill up on low carbohydrate, low calorie tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, artichoke hearts, celery, and zucchini. At a buffet, graze to take a taste of enticing items, but spend most of your time with the raw vegetables and heart healthy guacamole and humus dips. Socialize away from the food table so you won’t be tempted to continue eating while talking.
- If you know you’ll want to have a rich dessert (instead of fruit), keep the fat and carbohydrate calories low the rest of the day to compensate. Also, forego second helpings of the dinner to save “calorie” room for dessert. Encourage family and friends to take a brisk walk between dinner and dessert. You’ll be surprised by how much less you’ll crave!
- Watch out for raw foods (raw fish, steak tartar and eggnog made with raw eggs) or foods left out too long at room temperature. They could harbor harmful pathogens such as salmonella, shigella, listeria, or e coli.
- Eat your meal slowly so that you’ll feel full with less food. It typically takes your stomach about 20 minutes to let your brain know that you are full. Try to avoid or limit foods high in saturated fat like heavy gravies. These are typically very high in calories. For example: 8 oz. eggnog = 340 calories, 1 slice pie with whipping cream = 520 calories; 1 cup standard poultry stuffing = 500 calories.
- Exercise more to burn more calories during the holidays. Cycling, fast-walking, and cross-country skiing are great ideas. Even shoveling the snow off of your driveway and sidewalk counts.
- Offer to bring your favorite healthy recipe to the party and spend most of your time eating it. Let your host keep the leftovers from your dish. If you’re hosting the meal or party, send leftovers home with your guests. It’s a friendly gesture and saves your from temptation!
- If you have food sensitivities or allergies, call your host before the party to determine what foods would be safe. There is nothing worse than having an allergic reaction or digestive distress when you are trying to have fun.
- Don’t begin a diet during the holidays or become obsessive about avoiding tempting holiday fare. If you restrict yourself too much, you’ll either be depressed or “pig out” later. Remember that the average adult gains 6 lbs. from Thanksgiving Day through New Year’s Day. If you can even maintain your weight during the holidays, you’ll be one step ahead when it is time to make your New Year’s resolutions.
After the heart, the brain is the most voracious consumer of energy in the body. The authors propose that deficiencies in the ability to fuel brain neurons might lead to some of the cognitive impairments associated with autism. Mitochondria are the primary source of energy production in cells and carry their own set of genetic instructions, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), to carry out aerobic respiration. Dysfunction in mitochondria already is associated with a number of other neurological conditions, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
The researchers obtained blood samples from each child and analyzed the metabolic pathways of mitochondria in immune cells called lymphocytes. Previous studies sampled mitochondria obtained from muscle, but the mitochondrial dysfunction sometimes is not expressed in muscle. Muscle cells can generate much of their energy through anaerobic glycolysis, which does not involve mitochondria. By contrast, lymphocytes, and to a greater extent brain neurons, rely more heavily on the aerobic respiration conducted by mitochondria. The researchers found that mitochondria from children with autism consumed far less oxygen (66 percent) than mitochondria from the group of control children, a sign of lowered mitochondrial activity. For example, the oxygen consumption of one critical mitochondrial enzyme complex, NADH oxidase, in autistic children was only a third of that found in control children. Reduced mitochondrial enzyme function proved widespread among the autistic children.
Mitochondria also are the main intracellular source of oxygen free radicals. Free radicals are very reactive species that can harm cellular structures, including DNA. Cells are able to repair typical levels of such oxidative damage. Giulivi and her colleagues found that hydrogen peroxide levels in autistic children were twice as high as in normal children. As a result, the cells of children with autism were exposed to higher oxidative stress.If researchers find some kind of blood marker that is consistent with and unique to children with autism, it changes the way we diagnose this difficult-to-assess condition. The real challenge now is to try and understand the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in children with autism.
Bonnie - what is the most significant nutrient we know of that supports mitochondria? Co-Enzyme Q10
Three Topics That Dominated the Public Health Landscape
- Recalls, Warning Label Modification, Drug Rejections
Recalls of eggs, children's medicine (Tylenol, cough medicine, and more), Lipitor, Similac infant formula, Hyland Teething Tablets, among others dominated the media. The optimist in us thinks the reason for this is the FDA is doing a better job of testing and delivering punishment.
Rotarix Vaccine, Reflux Meds, Zocor, Bone Drugs, and Asthma Meds were just a few of the many drugs that received more severe warning label adjustments from the FDA. It is encouraging to see the FDA taking steps to make prescription labels more transparent concerning the potential dangers that can occur.
There were more high profile rejections of new drug applications for lack of safety than we can remember in recent years. The FDA forcing the removal of Meridia was also shocking.
- Patient Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
While this piece of legislation proved to be incredibly polarizing, it did deliver with regards to promoting prevention. Whether or not Americans take advantage of it remains to be seen. To find out how this legislation can help you from a nutritional as well as overall health standpoint, click here.
- Gluten-Free Is Hip.
Whether the gluten-free diet went mainstream for the right reasons or not, we are happy that it is getting so much attention. The mere fact that Big Food is creating more variety/alternatives is a win-win for those who actually have gluten intolerance and celiac disease. However, two negatives produced by the trend are that many of the gluten-free products are of poor quality and/or ingredients. In addition, people are putting themselves on gluten-free diets without the guidance of a health professional, which can have detrimental effects on their calorie and nutrient needs.
The reality is that those with celiac disease and gluten-intolerance is up four-fold over the last decade. In our opinion, this is a conservative estimate. Add to the equation that it is not just gluten in wheat that can be dangerous (read The Wheat Bombshell), we have a very hard time justifying eating wheat (especially whole wheat) at all.
It always makes us proud to see wellness principles that we have touted forever become mainstream.
- Low fat diet finally gets the boot. Even the American Dietetic Association is giving in. Read what the experts at their 2010 annual meeting had to say, as well as two other research studies that put low fat to bed.
- These supplemental nutrients appeared over and over in prestigious research journals from all over the world, touting myriad benefits (for a list of studies, perform a search by typing the nutrient in the search box at the top left corner of our blog).
- Vitamin D
- The amount of locally grown food consumed in the United States this year jumped by 20%.
- Two of our favorite researchers studying the origin of humans and diet, Boyd Eaton and Loren Cordain, reaffirmed that from a dietary standpoint, we are no different from our ancestors. Their February research study further enhanced what they already published in 2000.
- Tai Chi, Meditation, and Yoga takes their place at the table for overall health and stress reduction. While in the past it seems like these therapies were on the outside looking in, copious amounts of data now confirm their effectiveness and they should not take a back seat to any other forms of wellness therapy.
- Sales of vitamin D supplements and the non-caloric sweetener stevia were up 91% and 255% respectively.
- Testing of Hemoglobin A1C is now mainstream for more accurately identifying prediabetes.
- The FDA made a statement warning against taking quinine for leg cramps.
- Taking too much, taking alone, and/or taking a poor source of calcium can do more harm than good.
- The School Lunch Program is now considered a threat to national security because the ramifications of its unhealthy nature affects the capability of youths to defend our nation. This statement, along with First Lady Michelle Obama's proposed legislation, started to make an impact this year.
- The government announced that they will start to go after Big Pharma executives on criminal charges because multi-billion dollar settlements have not deterred them from consistently breaking the law.
- The IOM's new recommendations for vitamin D intake tripled, but fell far short of what Americans need. Here are our comments.
- The 2010 Dietary Guideline Recommendations presented by the DGA Commission were an absolute joke. Once again, pandering to special interest dominated the recommendations. Click here to read Bonnie's analysis.
- Environmental allergy is on the rise due to: 1) pollen content is at its worst level in years 2) there is virtually no discussion from the allergy community or the media about avoiding cross-reacting foods to reduce allergy severity.
- Despite the FDA studying statin medication's negative effect on memory, an FDA rebuke for Pfizer for failing to report serious adverse effects from Lipitor, several disparaging high-profile studies on its adverse effects, and experts suggesting statins' preventive effect may be dubious, millions more around the world are taking them. It has gotten so crazy that a British study are suggested that they be given out free with fast food. All of this pales in comparison to the most egregious act: since the 1980's, Merck has sat on a patent for a statin/CoQ10 combination, ignoring the negative affects this decision has had on patients taking statins.
- H1N1 never materialized into the pandemic it is made out to be. One study found that complications from H1N1 were the same as the regular flu. An investigation found that experts making recommendations to the World Health Organization were linked to vaccine manufacturers. Hundreds of millions of dollars worth of unused vaccine supply had to be destroyed. Yet the WHO and the CDC have been mum on culpability.
- Despite the continued rise of prescription-related deaths, prescription drug use continues to explode in the US, even though there are many other alternatives for treatment that exist.
We celebrated our 25th year in business. Enough said.
Our Client Appreciation Event at the beginning of the year was a blast. We were honored for the second year in a row by Constant Contact for our eNewsletter content excellence. Our NCI Media Channel featuring Brand Buzz Video and Bonnie Unplugged drew thousands of views. Our clientele as a whole saved a ton of money from the first year of our NCI Well Rewards Loyalty Program. We made a much more concerted effort to have our clients submit our services for insurance reimbursement with much success. We could not be happier with the reaction to our subscription-based eNewsletter, NCI Insider.
What's in Store for 2011?
- FDA Comes After Dietary Supplements Hard
FDA will crack down on meds and dietary supps. May use European action as model for taking them down once and for all. The one constant holding them back has been the consumer and his/her right to choose.
- Big Pharma Gets More Involved in the Supplement Business.
Look for Big Pharma to get deeper into the supplement business. “If you can’t beat em, join em.”
- Food Labels Get New Look
A push from the Department of Health and Human Services spurred retailers to place simplified nutrition labels on the front of their food packaging beginning early 2011. Until we see the prototype, we will reserve comment.
- Eat for Longevity.
You’ll be hearing this phrase a lot in 2010, especially after a recent study found that subjects with the best diets reduced their risk of death by up to 25 percent over a 10-year period. What better impetus could there be to eat well?
- Focus on Mental Health.
Nearly one in five adult Americans experience mental illness, according to a new SAMHSA government survey, with women, the unemployed, and young adults more likely than others to be affected. Among those, one in five -- representing 45 million Americans -- also had substance dependence or abuse problems in the previous year. This issue cannot be swept under the floor any longer.
Bonnie, Steve, Carolyn, Sharron, and Lilo