Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Fish oil supps help men with prostate cancer risk

New research has found that men with prostate cancer who ate a low-saturated fat diet and took fish oil supplements had lower levels of pro-inflammatory substances in their blood and a lower cell cycle progression score, than men who ate a typical Western diet.
The study, published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research, is important because lowering the cell cycle progression score, a measure used to predict cancer recurrence, may help prevent prostate cancers from becoming more aggressive.

The men were able to change the composition of their cell membranes in both the healthy cells and the cancer cells in the prostate. They had increased levels of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil and decreased levels of the more pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids in the cell membranes, which directly affect the biology of the cells.

Sesame seeds becoming more of an allergy problem

Women's mercury levels dropping,0,4433487.story

Taking up exercise at retirement triples healthy aging

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

GERD? Colic?

More often than not, it is just an infant's digestion system maturing and will work itself out without meds.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

What's really in that McRib?

Milk for Teenagers Disappoints

The role of milk consumption during adolescence for hip fracture prevention has not been established. Researchers wanted to find out of high consumption may adversely influence risk by increasing height. A JAMA Pediatrics study, published this week examined over 22 years of follow-up in more than 96,000 white postmenopausal women and men aged 50 years and older, found that each additional glass of milk per day during teenage years (13-18) was associated with a significant 9% higher risk of hip fracture in men. Teenage milk consumption was not associated with increased hip fractures in women, but did not prevent them either.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Doctors told to get serious about obesity

Have copper water pipes? Read this.

If Monday's eNewsletter did not convince you optimize your zinc levels, maybe this will.

Copper imbalances have been associated with a number of pathological conditions, including cancer. Publishing in PNAS, scientists have found that copper in drinking water -- given at the maximum levels permitted in public water supplies -- accelerated the growth of tumors in mice. On the other hand, reducing copper levels reduced tumor growth. The study strongly suggests that copper is an essential factor for the growth of tumors in humans as well.

Importantly, the researchers do not think that copper causes cancer. Exposure of healthy mice to the same amount of copper via drinking water for up to two years did not result in an increased incidence of cancer. The authors suggest that copper levels could be monitored in cancer patients. They propose that minimizing copper in the patient's system may be beneficial in cancer therapy, especially when combined with drugs that block glycolysis. This two-step strategy would starve cancer cells.

Steve: While this study asserts that high copper levels only affect individuals with cancer, we have seen many other studies showing neurological and autoimmune damage from too much copper in healthy persons.

This does not mean that those with copper pipes have to retrofit their homes. You must be aware, however, that copper and zinc are inextricably linked. If you copper levels are high, it is probable that your zinc levels are low. You can test for copper and zinc through, serum, urine, or hair analysis. If your zinc level is low, the only way to raise it is through supplementation. An amino acid chelate is the best absorbed form of zinc. Please seek the advice of a licensed health professional because just as too much copper can be toxic, so can zinc if not supplemented properly.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Lack of dietary protein leads to overeating, weight gain

Lack of dietary protein is a key factor in the global obesity epidemic, with individuals' total calorie intake increasing as the percentage of protein in their diets decreases, according to a new study in Obesity Reviews.

Researchers found that regardless of weight, age or the time frame of a diet, reducing the percentage of dietary protein will result in increased total energy intake, contributing to overweight and obesity.

When you consume things like soft drinks, which are fairly low in proportion of protein but high in calories, your energy intake will increase because you'll need to keep eating to get the protein you need. If you add a soft drink to your lunch then you've added a lot of calories, but you'll still have to eat the same amount of food.

When people are trying to lose weight, they need to look at macronutrient composition, not just calories. If you cut out calories but don't consider protein intake, you're going to be hungry and your diet won't be successful.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

FDA drafts guidance to reduce acrylamide in food

French Fries, Baked Goods, Potato Chips - all things that may include high amounts of acrylamide, a substance created when certain foods are cooked at very high temperatures. The FDA finally admits that too much may be harmful to your health. They are offering guidance and want feedback from the public as to how best to reduce it.

Low Vitamin E May Mean Higher Fracture Rate

A study of the much maligned, but misunderstood, vitamin E has shown that low intake and low serum levels of alpha tocopherol, one component of vitamin E, increased the risk of hip fracture in elderly men and women.

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study examined over 63,000 men and women over a 19 year period. This is how nutrient studies should be structured to get a true preventive effect.

Whenever supplementing with vitamin E, we always recommend taking a mixed tocopherol, which contains all the components of vitamin E, as opposed to just taking one or several tocopherols.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Zinc starves deadliest of infections

Researchers have found that zinc can 'starve' one of the world's most deadly bacteria by preventing its uptake of an essential metal. The finding opens the way for further work to design antibacterial agents in the fight against Streptococcus pneumoniae, responsible for more than one million deaths a year, killing children, the elderly and other vulnerable people by causing pneumonia, meningitis, and other serious infectious diseases.

Published in the journal Nature Chemical Biology, the researchers describe how zinc "jams shut" a protein transporter in the bacteria so that it cannot take up manganese, an essential metal that Streptococcus pneumoniae needs to be able to invade and cause disease in humans.

It's long been known that zinc plays an important role in the body's ability to protect against bacterial infection, but this is the first time anyone has been able to show how zinc actually blocks an essential pathway causing the bacteria to starve. Without manganese, these bacteria can easily be cleared by the immune system. With this new information, researchers can start to design the next generation of antibacterial agents to target and block these essential transporters.

Bonnie: "With this new information, researchers can start to design the next generation of antibacterial agents to target and block these essential transporters." This means that they can create a patentable synthetic chemical that performs the same function as zinc. Zinc, of course, is not patentable.

Utilizing the benefits of zinc, especially during cold and flu season, is critical.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

How Much Sleep Does It Take to Save Your Heart?,0,865847.story

Tearless Onion: GMO Double Standard?

Onions, a key ingredient in recipes around the globe, come in a tearless version that scientists are now reporting could pack health benefits like its close relative, garlic, which is renowned for protecting against heart disease. They published their laboratory analysis, which suggests a similar heart-friendly role for the tearless onions, as well as a possible role in managing weight gain, in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Researchers note that the onion has a unique chemistry that leads to its tear-inducing effects when cut. Its pungency has driven cooks to don goggles, clench wooden spoons in their mouths and try other usually futile techniques to prevent crying at the cutting board. An answer could arrive in the form of a new type of onion that makes less of the protein blamed for making eyes burn and tear up.

The research team has developed such a version, which instead makes a sulfur compound similar to one found in cut garlic that may be the key to its cardiovascular benefits. Many people eat garlic cloves or take it as a nutritional supplement in pill form to reduce the clumping of platelets in the blood, which can lead to blood clots and clogged arteries. Garlic also has been shown to reduce weight gain. They wanted to know whether the new onion might also have similar positive effects on health.

The scientists found that in lab tests, extract from the tearless onion significantly reduced platelet clumping, compared to regular onions or even garlic. Other results showed that the new onion had about the same anti-inflammatory properties as the original. Also, preliminary testing in rats showed that the tearless onion could help control weight gain -- more so than regular onions or garlic.

Steve: Here is the conundrum. A tearless onion seems like a beneficial thing for us, right? Unfortunately, because the onion has been genetically altered to produce more sulfur and less tear-inducing protein, and it has not been rigorously tested for safety, don't we have to put it in the same category as any other genetically modified organisms? Without adequate safety testing, I think we must err on the side of caution.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

FDA to Ban Trans Fats

Excuse us if our tone is not celebratory. We knew this day would come eventually. Unfortunately, it has come far too late (over thirty years to be exact). We find the decision anticlimactic because most manufacturers have removed trans fats from their products already. The FDA waited more than seven years to render this decision so food manufacturers could get their houses in order.

The harmful effects of trans fats were painfully apparent 33 years ago when Bonnie started showing clients and groups the degradation (or lack thereof) of her Hostess Cupcake.
(the cupcake's 25th anniversary photo)

If what FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg says is true, that over 20,000 heart attacks and over 7,000 deaths could be prevented every year by removing trans fats, that means that since Bonnie has been showing her cupcake, 660,000 heart attacks and 231,000 deaths could have been prevented simply by removing trans fats from the food supply.

33 years ago, the FDA had plenty of data on the dangers of trans fats. They chose to pander to Big Food instead of protecting the public. For shame, for shame.

What's Your Fitness Age?

A Colleague Forwarded This to Us.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Animal protein increases test scores

Micronutrient deficiencies and suboptimal energy intake are widespread in rural Kenya, with detrimental effects on child growth and development. Sporadic school feeding programs rarely include animal source foods (ASF).

In the present study, a cluster-randomized feeding trial was undertaken to determine the impact of snacks containing ASF on district-wide, end-term standardized school test scores and nutrient intake. A total of twelve primary schools were randomly assigned to one of three isoenergetic feeding groups (a local plant-based stew (githeri) with meat, githeri plus whole milk or githeri with added oil) or a control group receiving no intervention feeding. After the initial term that served as baseline, children were fed at school for five consecutive terms over two school years from 1999 to 2001.

Children in the Meat group showed significantly greater improvements in test scores than those in all the other groups. Compared with the Control group, the Meat group showed significant improvements in test scores in Arithmetic, English, Kiembu, Kiswahili and Geography. Folate, iron, available iron, energy per body weight, vitamin B12, zinc and riboflavin intake were significant contributors to the change in test scores.

The greater improvements in test scores of children receiving ASF indicate improved academic performance, which can result in greater academic achievement. The study was published in the October issue of British Journal of Nutrition.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Study: Putting Your Child Before Yourself Makes You a Happier Person.

While popular media often depicts highly-involved parents negatively as "helicopter parents" or "tiger moms, how does placing one's children at the center of family life really affect parental well-being? New research published in Social Psychological and Personality Science finds that parents who prioritize their children's well-being over their own are not only happier, but also derive more meaning in life from their child-rearing responsibilities.

"These findings stand in contrast to claims in the popular media that prioritizing children's well-being undermines parents' well-being," the researchers wrote.

Researchers Claire E. Ashton-James, Kostadin Kushlev and Elizabeth W. Dunn conducted two studies with a total of 322 parents. In Study 1, parents were asked to complete a child-centrism scale to measure their parenting style and were then given a survey to measure the happiness and meaning in life that they experienced from having children by responding to statements such as "My children make my life meaningful." The researchers found that more child-centric parents were significantly more likely to report higher happiness and a sense of purpose in life derived from having children.

In Study 2, participants were asked to retell their previous day's activities and report how they felt during each activity. The results indicated that more child-centric parents had greater positive feelings, less negative feelings, and experienced more meaning in life during child-care activities. In addition, the well-being of more child-centric parents was not affected negatively throughout the rest of the day, suggesting that the child-centric approach to parenting does not hurt parental well-being when parents are not taking care of their children.

"These findings suggest that the more care and attention people give to others, the more happiness and meaning they experience," the authors wrote. "From this perspective, the more invested parents are in their children's well-being -- that is, the more 'child centric' parents are -- the more happiness and meaning they will derive from parenting."

Kraft succumbs to outside pressure on Mac & Cheese

Monday, November 04, 2013

Friday, November 01, 2013

Mexico Approves Junk Food Tax.

Steve: They realize the urgency of their obesity epidemic. Why can't we?