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New Analysis Concludes Organic Food Really Is Healthier

by on Jul.29, 2014, under Health


By Dr. Mercola

Are organic foods healthier, and therefore worth the extra expense? The scientific debate over this issue has raged on for many years now. I believe the answer is clear-cut, at least if you believe that toxic chemicals have the capacity to harm your health…

Two years ago, meta-analysis by Stanford University1 received widespread media coverage, and with few exceptions, conventional media outlets used it to cast doubt on the value of an organic diet.

This despite the fact that the analysis—which looked at 240 studies comparing organically and conventionally grown food—found that organic foods are less contaminated with agricultural chemicals. In an effort to further clarify the 2012 findings, a group of European scientists evaluated an even greater number of studies, 343 in all, published over the last several decades.

Organic Foods Have Higher Levels of Important Antioxidants

Just like the Stanford study, the new analysis2, 3, 4, 5, 6 also found that while conventional and organic vegetables oftentimes offer similar levels of many nutrients, organic foods have fewer pesticide residues. They also have on average 48 percent lower levels of cadmium,7 a toxic metal and a known carcinogen—a clear bonus, if you ask me.

One key nutritional difference between conventional and organics however, is their antioxidant content. According to the featured findings, organic fruits and vegetables can contain anywhere from 18-69 percent more antioxidants than conventionally-grown varieties. According to the authors:

“Many of these compounds have previously been linked to a reduced risk of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative diseases and certain cancers, in dietary intervention and epidemiological studies.

Additionally, the frequency of occurrence of pesticide residues was found to be four times higher in conventional crops… Significant differences were also detected for some other (e.g. minerals and vitamins) compounds.” [Emphasis mine]

Antioxidants are a very important part of optimal health, as they can control how fast you age by fighting free radicals. So the fact that organic foods contain far higher levels of them vouches for the stance that organic foods are healthier in terms of nutrition, in addition to being lower in pesticides.

Co-author Charles Benbrook notes8 that one reason you’re advised to eat more fruits and vegetables is in fact to get more antioxidants into your diet. “And if organic produce provides more of them, we think that’s a big deal,” he says. I couldn’t agree more.

There are also a number of other studies that support the claim that organically grown produce contain higher levels of nutrients in general. For example, in 2010 PLOS ONE published a study9 that was partially funded by the USDA, which found that organic strawberries were more nutrient-rich than non-organic strawberries.

Nutrient Content in Food Has Dramatically Declined

Ironically, LA Times10 noted that “It’s not entirely clear to scientists whether the human body can absorb the extra antioxidants in organic foods and put them to use.” To me, this line of reasoning shows a remarkable depth of ignorance, if not outright deception.

The nutrient content of foods has dramatically declined across the board since the introduction of mechanized farming in 1925. For example, as explained by Dr. August Dunning, chief science officer and co-owner of Eco Organics, in order to receive the same amount of iron you used to get from one apple in 1950, by 1998 you had to eat 26 apples!

Were people prior to the 1950s eating foods that were “unnecessarily” nutrient-dense? Was most of their diet superfluous, in terms of the amount of nutrients a body can get by on?

The idea that your body wouldn’t put the extra nutrients to good use is just plain silly! You did not suddenly develop a new set of genetic instructions over the past 60+ years that allow your body to thrive on toxins and “not know what to do” with antioxidants! So please, do not fall for that kind of nonsense.

One of the primary reasons food doesn’t taste as good as it used to is also related to the deterioration of mineral content. The minerals actually form the compounds that give the fruit or vegetable its flavor. All of these issues go back to the health of the soil in which the food is grown.11

Healthy soils contain a huge diversity of microorganisms, and it is these organisms that are responsible for the plant’s nutrient uptake, health, and the stability of the entire ecosystem. The wide-scale adoption of industrial agriculture practices has decimated soil microbes responsible for transferring these minerals to the plants.

In 2009, the American Association for the Advancement of Science featured a presentation on soil health and its impact on food quality,12, 13 concluding that healthy soil indeed leads to higher levels of nutrients in crops.

Agricultural chemicals destroy the health of the soil by killing off its microbial inhabitants, which is one of the primary problems with modern farming, and the reason why the nutritional quality of conventionally-grown foods is deteriorating. As reported by Scientific American14 back in 2011:

“A landmark study on the topic by Donald Davis and his team of researchers from the University of Texas (UT) at Austin’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry was published in December 2004 in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

They studied U.S. Department of Agriculture nutritional data from both 1950 and 1999 for 43 different vegetables and fruits, finding ‘reliable declines’ in the amount of protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, riboflavin (vitamin B2) and vitamin C over the past half century.

Davis and his colleagues chalk up this declining nutritional content to the preponderance of agricultural practices designed to improve traits (size, growth rate, pest resistance) other than nutrition… The Organic Consumers Association cites several other studies with similar findings: A Kushi Institute analysis of nutrient data from 1975 to 1997 found that average calcium levels in 12 fresh vegetables dropped 27 percent; iron levels 37 percent; vitamin A levels 21 percent, and vitamin C levels 30 percent.”

Contemporary Industrial Agriculture Decimates Soil Microbes

The photographic adventure of NPR commentator and science writer Craig Childs offers a clear view of the death and destruction brought on by modern agriculture—genetic engineering-based monoculture in particular. Childs decided to replicate a photo project by David Liittschwager, a portrait photographer who spent years traveling the world dropping one-cubic-foot metal frames into gardens, streams, parks, forests, and oceans, photographing anything and everything that entered the frame. Around the world, Liittschwager’s camera captured thousands of plants, animals, and insects within the cubes, with entirely different “worlds” of plants and animals living as little as a few feet away from each other.

However, when Childs set up his camera among the genetically engineered corn stalks on a 600-acre farm in Iowa, he found NO signs of life with the exception of an isolated spider, a single red mite, and a couple grasshoppers…

The fact of the matter is that the “faster, bigger, cheaper” approach to food is slowly draining dry our planet’s resources and compromising your health. The earth’s soil is depleting at more than 13 percent the rate it can be replaced. We have already lost 75 percent of the world’s crop varieties over the last century. Over the past 10 years, we’ve had 100 million tons of herbicides dumped onto our crops, polluting our soil and streams. And genetically engineered (GE) crops are now speeding up the destructive process by completely altering the composition of soil bacteria in the fields where such crops are grown.

Pesticide Exposure May Be Greater Than Reported, Thanks to GMOs

It’s worth noting that certain types of pesticides are not even counted when researchers assess pesticide contamination on food. The soil bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), produces Bt toxin—a pesticide that breaks open the stomach of certain insects and kills them. This pesticide is actually permitted in organic farming, where it’s applied topically. It’s known to photodegrade over time, making it fairly harmless by the time the food reaches your plate.

However, genetically engineered “Bt” crops, such as Bt corn, are equipped with a gene from the Bt soil bacteria. These plants actually produce the Bt toxin internally, in every cell of the plant, from root to tip. This plant-produced version of the poison is thousands of times more concentrated than the topical spray. It cannot be washed off, and it does not photodegrade. This internal Bt toxin is not counted in pesticide counts, yet it’s present in every single kernel!

The Health Hazards of These Pesticide-Producing Plants

Monsanto and the EPA consistently claimed that the genetically engineered Bt corn would only harm insects. The Bt toxin produced inside the plant would be completely destroyed in the human digestive system and would not have any impact at all on consumers, they claimed. These claims have since turned out to be false. In 2011, doctors at Sherbrooke University Hospital in Quebec found Bt-toxin in the blood of:15

93 percent of pregnant women tested
80 percent of umbilical blood in their babies
67 percent of non-pregnant women

The study authors speculated that the Bt toxin was likely ingested via the normal diet of the Canadian middle class—which makes sense when you consider that genetically engineered (GE) corn is present in the vast majority of all processed foods and drinks in the form of high fructose corn syrup, corn oil, and other corn products. They also suggested that the toxin may have come from eating meat from animals fed Bt corn, which most livestock raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) are. Other research16 has revealed that the Bt toxin produced in GE plants is toxic to humans and mammals, and triggers immune system responses, including:

Elevated IgE and IgG antibodies, which are typically associated with allergies and infections
An increase in cytokines, which are associated with allergic and inflammatory responses. The specific cytokines (interleukins) that were found to be elevated are also higher in humans who suffer from a wide range of disorders, from arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease to MS and cancer
Elevated T cells (gamma delta), which are increased in people with asthma, and in children with food allergies, juvenile arthritis, and connective tissue diseases

Why Spraying Antibiotics on Fields Is a BAD Idea

As suggested earlier, some pesticides have antibiotic properties, and very effectively and aggressively kill off the microorganisms in the soil. Glyphosate is a perfect example, and is one of the primary pesticides used on other types of GE crops, particularly those known as “Roundup Ready.” These crops are engineered to withstand otherwise lethal doses of the chemical. The idea is that by being “immune” to the chemical, only weeds will be killed off, allowing farmers to liberally spray their fields.

But when farmers spray glyphosate on their fields, not only are they destroying the fertility of the soil, they’re also promoting chemical resistance in the field AND antibiotic resistance in the human food chain… Indeed, weeds have developed resistance to glyphosate, making the weed problem an ever-worsening one. But that’s not all. Livestock raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) are routinely fed GE feed—typically GE corn and soy—which destroys the animal’s gut bacteria and promotes disease.

And, feces from animals raised in CAFOs are used as fertilizer on crop fields, which scientists now admit is yet another way antibiotic-resistant disease appears to be promulgated! Modern agriculture is truly stuck in a vicious circle where the “garbage in-garbage out” motto rules supreme…

I recently named the GMA “the most evil corporation on the planet,” considering the fact that it consists primarily of pesticide producers and junk food manufacturers who are going to great lengths to violate some of your most basic rights—just to ensure that subsidized, genetically engineered and chemical-dependent, highly processed junk food remains the status quo.

The insanity has gone far enough. It’s time to unite and fight back, which is why I encourage you to boycott every single product owned by members of the GMA, including natural and organic brands. To learn more about this boycott, and the traitor brands that are included, please visit TheBoycottList.org. I also encourage you to donate to the Organic Consumers Fund. Your donation will help fight the GMA lawsuit in Vermont, and also help win the GMO labeling ballot initiative in Oregon in November.
Voting with your pocketbook, at every meal, matters. It makes a huge difference. By boycotting GMA member Traitor Brands, you can help level the playing field, and help take back control of our food supply. And as always, continue educating yourself about genetically engineered foods, and share what you’ve learned with family and friends.


-] Sources and References

1 Annals of Internal Medicine September 4, 2012; 157(5)
2 British Journal of Nutrition 2014 Jun 26:1-18. [Epub ahead of print]
3 Time Magazine July 17, 2014
4 LA Times July 14, 2014
5 Medicinenet.com July 15, 2014
6 Bloomberg July 15, 2014
7 ATSDR.cdc.gov Cadmium
8 NPR.com July 11, 2014
9 Fruit and Soil Quality of Organic and Conventional Strawberry Agroecosystems. PLoS ONE 5(9): e12346.
10 LA Times July 14, 2014
11 Beyond Pesticides, November 8, 2013
12 The Organic Center, AAAS Session 2009 — “Living Soil, Food Quality and the Future of Food”, February 2009
13 Newhope360.com February 26, 2009
14 Scientific American April 27, 2011
15 Reprod Toxicol. 2011 May;31(4):528-33.
16 J Agric Food Chem. 2008 Dec 10;56(23):11533-9.

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Rehab

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Rehab Interval’s Bike ( 5 x 1 minutes), Elliptical (11 x 2 Minutes)

by on Jul.25, 2014, under Indoor Training

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How Sugar Harms Your Brain Health and Drives Alzheimer’s Epidemic

by on Jul.24, 2014, under Health

By Dr. Mercola

Alzheimer’s disease, a severe form of dementia, affects an estimated 5.2 million Americans, according to 2013 statistics.1

One in nine seniors over the age of 65 has Alzheimer’s, and the disease is now thought to be the third leading cause of death in the US, right behind heart disease and cancer.

A growing body of research suggests there’s a powerful connection between your diet and your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, via similar pathways that cause type 2 diabetes.

Contrary to popular belief, your brain does not require glucose, and actually functions better burning alternative fuels, especially ketones, which your body makes in response to digesting healthy fats.

According to some experts, such as Dr. Ron Rosedale, Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders may in large part be caused by the constant burning of glucose for fuel by your brain.

Alzheimer’s disease was tentatively dubbed “type 3 diabetes” in early 2005 when researchers discovered that in addition to your pancreas, your brain also produces insulin, and this brain insulin is necessary for the survival of brain cells.

Sugar Damages Brain Structure and Function

In your brain, insulin helps with neuron glucose-uptake and the regulation of neurotransmitters, such as acetylcholine, which are crucial for memory and learning. This is why reducing the level of insulin in your brain impairs your cognition.

Research2 has also shown that type 2 diabetics lose more brain volume with age than expected—particularly gray matter. This kind of brain atrophy is yet another contributing factor for dementia.

Studies have found that people with lower levels of insulin and insulin receptors in their brain often have Alzheimer’s disease. But according to recent research published in the journal Neurology,3 sugar and other carbohydrates can disrupt your brain function even if you’re not diabetic or have any signs of dementia.

To test their theory, they evaluated short- and long-term glucose markers in 141 healthy, non-diabetic, non-demented seniors. Memory tests and brain imaging were administered to assess their brain function and the actual structure of their hippocampus. As reported by Scientific American:4

“Higher levels on both glucose measures were associated with worse memory, as well as a smaller hippocampus and compromised hippocampal structure.

The researchers also found that the structural changes partially accounted for the statistical link between glucose and memory. According to study co-author Agnes Flöel, a neurologist at Charité, the results ‘provide further evidence that glucose might directly contribute to hippocampal atrophy.’”

The findings suggest that even if you’re not diabetic or insulin resistant (and about 80 percent of Americans fall into the latter category), sugar consumption can still disrupt your memory.

Long-term, it can contribute to the shrinking of your hippocampus, which is a hallmark symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. (Your hippocampus is involved with the formation, organization, and storage of memories.)

The authors of the study suggest that “strategies aimed at lowering glucose levels even in the normal range may beneficially influence cognition in the older population.”

‘Normal’ Blood Sugar Levels May Still Be High Enough to Cause Problems

Normally, a fasting blood sugar level between 100-125 mg/dl is diagnosed as a pre-diabetic state. A fasting blood sugar level of 90-100 is considered “normal.” But in addition to the featured research, other studies have also found that brain atrophy occurs even in this “normal” blood sugar range.

Neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter, MD insists that being very strict in limiting your consumption of sugar and non-vegetable carbs is one of THE most important steps you can take to prevent Alzheimer’s disease for this very reason.

He cites research from the Mayo Clinic, which found that diets rich in carbohydrates are associated with an 89 percent increased risk for dementia. Meanwhile, high-fat diets are associated with a 44 percent reduced risk.

Sugar Lobby Threatens Organizations and Buries Science on Health Effects

Compelling research shows that your brain has great plasticity, which you control through your diet and lifestyle choices. Unfortunately, the American public has been grossly brainwashed by the sugar and processed food industries into believing that sugar is a perfectly reasonable “nutrient” that belongs in a healthy diet.

Without accurate information, it’s certainly more difficult to make health-affirming choices. Newsweek5 recently ran an article revealing just how far the sugar industry will go to defend its market share:

“According to a new report6 from the Center for Science and Democracy… industry groups representing companies that sell sweeteners, like the Sugar Association and the Corn Refiners Association… have poured millions of dollars into countering science that indicates negative health consequences of eating their products.

For example, when a University of Southern California study from 2013 found that the actual high fructose corn syrup content in sodas ‘varied significantly’ from the sugar content disclosed on soda labels, the Corn Refiners Association considered paying for its own counter research.

A consultant suggested that the counter research should only be published if the results aligned with their goal of disputing the USC study: ‘If for any reason the results confirm [the University of Southern California study], we can just bury the data,’ the consultant wrote, according to the report.”

According to the Center for Science report, the Sugar Association even threatened the director general of the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO had published a paper on sugar, recommending a 10 percent limit on added sugars, stating that added sugars “threaten the nutritional quality of diets.”

The Sugar Association shot off a letter to the director general, warning him that, unless WHO withdrew the study, the Sugar Association would persuade the US Congress to withdraw the WHO’s federal funding. The following year, when WHO published its global health strategy on diet and health, there was no mention of the offending sugar study.

The Sugar Lobby Deserves Blame for Fueling Chronic Disease Epidemics

Indeed, despite overwhelming evidence showing that sugar, and processed fructose in particular, is at the heart of our burgeoning obesity and chronic disease epidemics, the sugar lobby has been so successful in its efforts to thwart the impact of such evidence that there’s still no consensus among our regulatory agencies as to the “factual” dangers of sugar…

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data,7 13 percent of the average American’s diet is sugar. In the UK, a recently published report8 by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) recommends limiting your added sugar intake to five percent, in order to avoid obesity and type 2 diabetes. They calculate this to be the equivalent of 25 grams of sugar (5-6 teaspoons) per day for women, and 35 grams (7-8 teaspoons) for men.

This matches my own recommendations for healthy, non-insulin resistant individuals—with one key difference. I recommend restricting sugar/fructose consumption to 25 grams from ALL sources, not just added sugar. This includes limiting your non-vegetable carbohydrates as well. Crazy enough, the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition still recommends you get 50 percent of your daily energy intake in the form of starchy carbohydrates, which will undoubtedly and significantly raise your risk of insulin resistance. If you’re insulin/leptin resistant, diabetic, overweight, or have high blood pressure, heart disease, or cancer, I recommend restricting your sugar/fructose consumption to a maximum of 15 grams per day from all sources, until your insulin/leptin resistance has been resolved.

Dietary Guidelines for Maintaining Healthy Brain Function and Avoiding Alzheimer’s Disease

It’s becoming increasingly clear that the same pathological process that leads to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes may also hold true for your brain. As you over-indulge on sugar and grains, your brain becomes overwhelmed by the consistently high levels of glucose and insulin that blunts its insulin signaling, leading to impairments in your thinking and memory abilities, eventually causing permanent brain damage.

Additionally, when your liver is busy processing fructose (which your liver turns into fat), it severely hampers its ability to make cholesterol, an essential building block of your brain that is crucial for optimal brain function. Indeed, mounting evidence supports the notion that significantly reducing fructose consumption is a very important step for preventing Alzheimer’s disease.

Because of the very limited treatments, and no available cure as of yet, you’re really left with just one solid solution, and that is to prevent Alzheimer’s from happening to you in the first place. As explained by neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter, Alzheimer’s is a disease predicated primarily on lifestyle choices; the two main culprits being excessive sugar and gluten consumption.

Another major factor is the development and increased consumption of genetically engineered (GE) grains, which are now pervasive in most processed foods sold in the US. The beauty of following my optimized nutrition plan is that it helps prevent and treat virtually ALL chronic degenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s. Dr. Perlmutter’s book, Grain Brain, also provides powerful arguments for eliminating grains from your diet, particularly if you want to protect the health of your brain. In terms of your diet, the following suggestions may be among the most important for Alzheimer’s prevention:

Avoid sugar and refined fructose. Ideally, you’ll want to keep your total sugar and fructose below 25 grams per day, or as low as 15 grams per day if you have insulin resistance or any related disorders. In one recent animal study, a junk food diet high in sugar resulted in impaired memory after just one week!9 Place recognition, specifically, was adversely affected.

As a general rule, you’ll want to keep your fasting insulin levels below 3, and this is indirectly related to fructose, as it will clearly lead to insulin resistance. However, other sugars (sucrose is 50 percent fructose by weight), grains, and lack of exercise are also important factors. Lowering insulin will also help lower leptin levels which is another factor for Alzheimer’s.
Avoid gluten and casein (primarily wheat and pasteurized dairy, but not dairy fat, such as butter). Research shows that your blood-brain barrier, the barrier that keeps things out of your brain where they don’t belong, is negatively affected by gluten. Gluten also makes your gut more permeable, which allows proteins to get into your bloodstream, where they don’t belong. That then sensitizes your immune system and promotes inflammation and autoimmunity, both of which play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s.
Eat a nutritious diet, rich in folate, such as the one described in my nutrition plan. Vegetables, without question, are your best form of folate, and we should all eat plenty of fresh raw veggies every day. Avoid supplements like folic acid, which is the inferior synthetic version of folate.
Increase consumption of all healthful fats, including animal-based omega-3. Beneficial health-promoting fats that your brain needs for optimal function include organic butter from raw milk, clarified butter called ghee, organic grass fed raw butter, olives, organic virgin olive oil and coconut oil, nuts like pecans and macadamia, free-range eggs, wild Alaskan salmon, and avocado.

Contrary to popular belief, the ideal fuel for your brain is not glucose but ketones. Ketones are what your body produces when it converts fat (as opposed to glucose) into energy. The medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) found in coconut oil are a great source of ketone bodies, because coconut oil is about 66 percent MCTs. In 2010, I published Dr. Mary Newport’s theory that coconut oil might offer profound benefits in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease. She has since launched one of the first clinical trials of its kind to test this theory.

Also make sure you’re getting enough animal-based omega-3 fats, such as krill oil. (I recommend avoiding most fish because, although fish is naturally high in omega-3, most fish are now severely contaminated with mercury.) High intake of the omega-3 fats EPA and DHA help by preventing cell damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease, thereby slowing down its progression, and lowering your risk of developing the disorder.
Optimize your gut flora by regularly eating fermented foods or taking a high-potency and high-quality probiotic supplement
Eat blueberries. Wild blueberries, which have high anthocyanin and antioxidant content, are known to guard against Alzheimer’s and other neurological diseases.

Other Helpful Dietary Tips and Valuable Supplements

Another helpful tip is to reduce your overall calorie consumption, and/or intermittently fast. As mentioned above, ketones are mobilized when you replace carbs with coconut oil and other sources of healthy fats. A one-day fast can help your body to “reset” itself, and start to burn fat instead of sugar. As part of a healthy lifestyle, I prefer an intermittent fasting schedule that simply calls for limiting your eating to a narrower window of time each day. By restricting your eating to a 6-8 hour window, you effectively fast 16-18 hours each day. To learn more about intermittent fasting, please see this previous article.

Also be aware that when it comes to cholesterol levels and Alzheimer’s, lower is NOT better. Quite the contrary. According to Dr. Perlmutter, research shows that elderly individuals with the lowest cholesterol levels have the highest risk for Alzheimer’s. They also have the highest risk for dying. As he says, the war on cholesterol is fundamentally inappropriate and harmful.

Finally, there’s a short list of supplement recommendations worth noting for their specific benefits in preventing and treating dementia. So, although your fundamental strategy for preventing dementia should involve a comprehensive lifestyle approach, you may want to take special note of the following natural dietary agents. These four natural foods/supplements have good science behind them, in terms of preventing age-related cognitive changes:

Gingko biloba: Many scientific studies have found that Ginkgo biloba has positive effects for dementia. A 1997 study from JAMA showed clear evidence that Ginkgo improves cognitive performance and social functioning for those suffering from dementia. Another 2006 study found Ginkgo as effective as the dementia drug Aricept (donepezil) for treating mild to moderate Alzheimer’s type dementia. A 2010 meta-analysis also found Ginkgo biloba to be effective for a variety of types of dementia.
Alpha lipoic acid (ALA): ALA has been shown to help stabilize cognitive functions among Alzheimer’s patients and may slow the progression of the disease.
Vitamin B12: A small Finnish study published in the journal Neurology10 found thatpeople who consume foods rich in B12 may reduce their risk of Alzheimer’s in their later years. For each unit increase in the marker of vitamin B12 the risk of developing Alzheimer’s was reduced by two percent. Remember sublingual methylcobalamin may be your best bet here.

Lifestyle Strategies That Can Help Ward off Alzheimer’s Disease

Lifestyle choices such as getting regular sun exposure and exercise, along with avoiding toxins, are also important factors when it comes to maintaining optimal brain health. Here are several of my lifestyle suggestions:

Optimize your vitamin D levels with safe sun exposure. Strong links between low levels of vitamin D in Alzheimer’s patients and poor outcomes on cognitive tests have been revealed. Researchers believe that optimal vitamin D levels may enhance the amount of important chemicals in your brain and protect brain cells by increasing the effectiveness of the glial cells in nursing damaged neurons back to health.

Vitamin D may also exert some of its beneficial effects on Alzheimer’s through its anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties. Sufficient vitamin D is imperative for proper functioning of your immune system to combat inflammation that is also associated with Alzheimer’s.
Exercise regularly. It’s been suggested that exercise can trigger a change in the way the amyloid precursor protein is metabolized,11 thus, slowing down the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s. Exercise also increases levels of the protein PGC-1alpha. Research has also shown that people with Alzheimer’s have less PGC-1alpha in their brains12 and cells that contain more of the protein produce less of the toxic amyloid protein associated with Alzheimer’s. I would strongly recommend reviewing the Peak Fitness Technique for my specific recommendations.
Avoid and eliminate mercury from your body. Dental amalgam fillings, which are 50 percent mercury by weight, are one of the major sources of heavy metal toxicity. However, you should be healthy prior to having them removed. Once you have adjusted to following the diet described in my optimized nutrition plan, you can follow the mercury detox protocol and then find a biological dentist to have your amalgams removed.
Avoid aluminum, such as antiperspirants, non-stick cookware, vaccine adjuvants, etc.
Avoid flu vaccinations as most contain both mercury and aluminum, well-known neurotoxic and immunotoxic agents.
Avoid anticholinergics and statin drugs. Drugs that block acetylcholine, a nervous system neurotransmitter, have been shown to increase your risk of dementia. These drugs include certain nighttime pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids, certain antidepressants, medications to control incontinence, and certain narcotic pain relievers.

Statin drugs are particularly problematic because they suppress the synthesis of cholesterol, deplete your brain of coenzyme Q10 and neurotransmitter precursors, and prevent adequate delivery of essential fatty acids and fat-soluble antioxidants to your brain by inhibiting the production of the indispensable carrier biomolecule known as low-density lipoprotein.
Challenge your mind daily. Mental stimulation, especially learning something new, such as learning to play an instrument or a new language, is associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s. Researchers suspect that mental challenge helps to build up your brain, making it less susceptible to the lesions associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Sources and References

1 Alzheimer’s Association 2013 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures (PDF)
2 WebMD April 29, 2014
3 Neurology November 12, 2013: 81(20); 1746-1752
4 Scientific American June 12, 2014
5 Newsweek June 27, 2014
6 Center for Science and Democracy, Union of Concerned Scientists
7 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NCHS Data Brief #122, May 2013 (PDF)
8 Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (PDF)
9 Worldhealth.net December 30, 2013
10 Neurology October 19, 2010: 75(16); 1402-3
11 Journal of Neuroscience, April 27, 2005: 25(17); 4217-4221
12 Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 2011: 25(1); 151-62

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Rehab 15 minutes Bike,Squats 6 x 15 RPS

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Lean Beef Lowers Your Blood Pressure

by on Jul.23, 2014, under Health

 Lean Beef Lowers Your Blood Pressure

From Science Daily

Contrary to conventional wisdom, a growing body of evidence shows that eating lean beef can reduce risk factors for heart disease, according to recent research by nutritional scientists.

“This research adds to the significant evidence, including work previously done in our lab, that supports lean beef’s role in a heart-healthy diet,” said Penny M. Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition, Penn State. “This study shows that nutrient-rich lean beef can be included as part of a heart-healthy diet that reduces blood pressure, which can help lower the risk for cardiovascular disease.”

The DASH eating plan — Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension — is currently recommended by the American Heart Association to lower blood pressure and reduce risk of heart disease. People following the DASH diet are encouraged to eat fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy and protein predominantly from plant sources.

The Beef Checkoff Program and the National Institutes of Health-supported Penn State General Clinical Research Center funded this research.

Lean beef can be enjoyed as the predominant protein source in a DASH-like diet, along with fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy, to effectively help lower blood pressure in healthy individuals, the researchers report in the Journal of Human Hypertension. This DASH-like diet is also called the BOLD+ diet — Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet plus additional protein.
Kris-Etherton and colleagues tested four diets to find the effects on vascular health. The diets tested included the Healthy American Diet — which served as the control — the BOLD+ diet, the BOLD diet and the DASH diet.

The control diet consisted of 0.7 ounces of lean beef per day, while the DASH diet included 1.0 ounce. The BOLD diet had 4.0 ounces and the BOLD+ diet included 5.4 ounces of lean beef.
The researchers tested the four different diets with 36 participants, between the ages of 30 and 65. All participants followed each diet at different times throughout the study period. Subjects were randomly assigned an order to follow each of the four diet plans for five weeks each, with a break of one week in between each new plan. Blood pressure was taken at the beginning and end of each diet period.

The BOLD+ diet was more effective at reducing blood pressure when compared to the other diets tested.

“This evidence suggests that it is the total protein intake — not the type of protein — that is instrumental in reducing blood pressure, as part of a DASH-like dietary pattern,” the researchers stated.

Working with Kris-Etherton were Michael A. Roussell, nutrition consultant; Sheila G. West, associate professor of biobehavioral health; Jan S. Ulbrecht, professor of biobehavioral health; John P. Vanden Heuvel, professor of veterinary science, all at Penn State; Alison M. Hill, lecturer in nutrition, University of South Australia; Trent L. Gaugler, visiting assistant professor of statistics, Carnegie Mellon University; and Peter J. Gillies, professor and director of the Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Story Source:
The above story is based on materials provided by Penn State. The original article was written by Victoria M. Indivero. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
Journal Reference:

M A Roussell, A M Hill, T L Gaugler, S G West, J S Ulbrecht, J P Vanden Heuvel, P J Gillies, P M Kris-Etherton. Effects of a DASH-like diet containing lean beef on vascular health. Journal of Human Hypertension, 2014; DOI: 10.1038/jhh.2014.34

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases…0717142049.htm

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Almonds Shown to Increase Cardiovascular Health

by on Jul.23, 2014, under Health

By Jessica Patella, ND abstracted on July 7, 2014 from “An almond-enriched diet increases plasma alpha-tocopherol and improves vascular function but does not affect oxidative stress markers or lipid levels” from the May 2014 issue of Free Radical Research.

Vascular dysfunction (endothelial dysfunction) results in a decreased ability of the body to dilate blood vessels, which leads to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and heart failure (1, 2). Vascular dysfunction increases with age and is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease (1). Research shows that Mediterranean diets with high intakes of nuts can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease and death (1). Recent research has found that eating almonds can improve cardiovascular risk factors and vascular function in young and middle-aged men (1).

Almonds are a major source of vitamin E, specifically alpha-tocopherol, as well as antioxidants and healthy monounsaturated fats (1, 3). Additionally, almonds contain arginine, a precursor to nitric oxide, which dilates blood vessels (4). These are a few of the components in almonds that are thought to decrease the risk of heart disease and heart attacks (5).

The recent research included 4 study groups over a 4-week period:

- Group 1: Healthy middle-aged men (n=20) over 55 years of age with fasting triglycerides below 220 mg/dL or total cholesterol below 250 mg/dL.

- Group 2: Healthy young men (n=20) between 18 and 35 years of age with fasting triglycerides below 220 mg/dL or total cholesterol below 250 mg/dL and body mass index (BMI) between 17 and 22.5.

- Group 3: Young men at risk for cardiovascular disease (n=20). Men between 18 and 35 years of age with at least one cardiovascular risk factor above the normal range (lipids, blood pressure or BMI).

- Group 4: Control group (n=15) with five of the 15 participants randomly assigned to this group from each of the 3 groups above.

Participants in the control group (Group 4) consumed their normal diet, while participants in the study groups (Groups 1-3) were asked to substitute any daily snack with 2 bags of almonds (total 50 grams= about 40 almonds; 14 mg alpha-tocopherol/50g) and otherwise eat to satiety. Three-day food dairies were assessed for compliance, which exceeded 92% (1).

After 4 weeks, plasma levels of triglycerides, HDL and LDL cholesterol were unchanged in all the groups. However, diastolic blood pressure decreased by 6% for healthy middle-aged men (P=0.015, Group 1) and by 12% for healthy younger men (P=0.002, Group 2). Diastolic blood pressure did not change for those at risk (Group 3) or the control group (Group 4) (1).

Systolic blood pressure decreased in all the almond consuming groups (p<0.01). Systolic blood pressure decreased by 6% in the healthy middle-aged (Group 1), 5% in the healthy young (Group 2) and 4% in the young at risk group (Group 3). Again with no change in the control group (Group 4) (1).

Vascular function was improved in all the almond-consuming groups (p=0.03, measured by flow-mediated dilatation= FMD). Although the result was not statistically significant, there was a decrease in vascular function in the control group (p<0.2).

In conclusion, eating 50 grams of almonds (about 40 almonds) per day over a 4-week period improved vascular function and blood pressure in healthy middle-aged men and younger men with or without risk factors for cardiovascular disease (1). Researchers feel that with the aging population, interventions that decrease the risk for cardiovascular disease in middle-aged adults can have an impact on global health care costs (1).

Jessica Patella, ND, is a naturopathic physician specializing in nutrition and homeopathic medicine and offers a holistic approach to health. She earned her ND from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Tempe, AZ, and is a member of the North Carolina Association of Naturopathic Physicians. Visit her website at www.awarenesswellness.com.

REFERENCES:

1. Choudhury K, et al. An almond-enriched diet increases plasma alpha-tocopherol and improves vascular function but does not affect oxidative stress markers or lipid levels. Free Radical Research, May 2014; 48(5): 599-606.
2. Endemann DH, Schiffrin EL. Endothelial dysfunction. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2004 Aug; 15(8): 1983-92.
3. Aravanis C, et al. Coronary heart disease in seven countries. IX. The Greek islands of Crete and Corfu. Circulation 1970;41:13.
4. Barreira JC, et al. Antioxidant activity and bioactive compounds of ten Portuguese regional and commercial almond cultivars. Food Chem Toxicol 2008;46:2230–2235.
5. Hu F, et al. Dietary fat intake and the risk of coronary heart diseasein women. N Engl J Med 1997;337:1491–1499.

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Rehab Interval’s Bike ( 5 x 1 minutes), Elliptical (11 x 2 Minutes)

by on Jul.23, 2014, under Indoor Training

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Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimer’s

by on Jul.22, 2014, under Health

From Ergo log

Physical exercise delays the aging process in brain tissue and protects against dementia and Alzheimer’s. Melatonin does – in animal studies at least – the same. You’d expect that the combined anti-aging effect of melatonin supplementation and physical exercise would therefore offer extra protection against Alzheimer’s. Well, according to neuro-scientists at the Institute of Biomedical Research in Barcelona this probably is the case.

 

Experimental setup

melatoninstructure Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimers
running Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimers

The Spanish performed experiments on 3xTg-AD mice genetically modified to develop Alzheimer’s [Tg]. They used almost identical mice, but ones that had not been genetically modified [NTg] as control animals. These mice do not develop Alzheimer’s.

 

Some of the Tg mice were given melatonin in their drinking water for six moths [Tg-M]. Another group were housed for six months in a cage with a treadmill [Tg-E]. The mice had free access to the treadmill so could run as much as they wanted.

 

And finally, there was a group of mice that were given melatonin and could exercise [Tg-ME].

 

Mitochondria
In brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s, the brain cells’ ability to generate energy often diminishes. The functioning of the brain cells’ mitochondria deteriorates. One of the reasons for this is a reduction in the activity of mitochondrial enzymes such as nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide-ubiquinone oxidoreductase chain 6 [ND6], cytochrome c oxidase I [COXI], ubiquinol-cytochrome c reductase complex core protein 2 [Core2] andadenosine triphosphate synthase subunit alpha [CV-alpha].

 

After six months the researchers observed that both exercise and melatonin had lessened the decrease in the enzymes’ functioning. And the combination of exercise and melatonin worked even better.

 

 

exerciseplusmelatoninversusalzheimer Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimers

 

exerciseplusmelatoninversusalzheimer2 Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimers

Learning ability
After six months the researchers got the mice to swim on two consecutive days in an aquarium where a small platform had been hidden just below the water surface. The animals in the combined group [Tg-ME] learned the way to the platform the quickest.

 

 

exerciseplusmelatoninversusalzheimer3 Animal study: combination of melatonin and exercise protects against Alzheimers

 

 

Conclusion
“Antiaging therapies and healthy lifestyle options such as melatonin administration and physical exercise showed a noticeable potential to increase cognitive reserve and bodily resistance to Alzheimer disease related changes”, the researchers write. “In 12-month-old 3xTg-AD mice, they induced partially different survival and neuroprotection pathways that resulted in some additive or synergistic neuroprotective effects when the 2 treatments were combined.”

 

“The study was initiated at 6 months of age when 3xTg-AD mice are in a stage of moderate pathology.”

 

“Similarly to the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) EPIC-Norfolk prospective population study, where the combination of physical exercise plus another 3 healthy lifestyle options predicted a 4-fold difference in total mortality [PLoS Med. 2008 Jan 8; 5(1): e12.], these combined treatments may significantly alleviate Alzheimer disease incidence in the population.”

 

Source:
Neurobiol Aging. 2012 Jun;33(6):1124.e13-29.

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