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Red Grape Compound Aids Weight Loss to Help Prevent Obesity

January 15, 2013

Red Grape Compounds Aid Weight Management to Help Prevent Obesity

Red Grape Compounds Aid Weight Management to Help Prevent Obesity

Obesity and overweight are threatening the health and lives of nearly seventy percent of the US population, and indicators are this epidemic is continuing to affect even more men, women and children as it places a significant burden on an already failing health care system. Most health-minded individuals understand the importance of eliminating refined and processed foods while maintaining constant blood glucose and insulin levels to achieve individual weight management goals.

Researchers from Purdue University have published the result of a study in the Journal of Biological Chemistry that demonstrates the potent nature of natural compounds found in red wine and many fruits to block cellular processes that allow fat cells to develop. Scientists found that the compound piceatannol, found naturally in the skin of grapes and other fruits blocks an immature fat cell’s ability to develop and grow, opening a door to a potential method to control obesity.

Piceatannol Inhibits the Formation of Mature Fat Cells to Achieve Weight Management Goals

The lead study author, Dr. Kee-Hong Kim found that piceatannol, an analog of resveratrol found in grapes and other fruit, is converted to piceatannol in humans following its consumption. The team tested piceatannol in cultured immature fat cells called preadipocytes to determine if the compound inhibited the maturity process that results in fully developed fat cells, capable of storing body fat and contributing to obesity.

Dr. Kim commented “We consider that adipogenesis is an important molecular target to delay or prevent fat cell accumulation and, hopefully, body fat mass gain.” The team found that piceatannol bound to the insulin receptor on the immature fat cells, effectively blocking insulin’s ability to control normal cellular cycling resulting in mature adipocytes. The grape-derived compound stimulated the activation of special genes necessary for the fat cell maturation process.

Eat a Wide Variety of Natural Fruits and Vegetables to Help Weight Loss Issues

The study authors concluded “Piceatannol actually alters the timing of gene expressions, gene functions and insulin action during adipogenesis, the process in which early stage fat cells become mature fat cells… in the presence of piceatannol, you can see delay or complete inhibition of adipogenesis.” Similar in structure to resveratrol, scientists believe piceatannol may also exert some of the same properties to help combat cancer, heart disease and neurodegenerative conditions.

Piceatannol is yet another natural compound that has demonstrated the ability to influence genetic expression to inhibit the formation of adipocytes or alter metabolism to help achieve weight management goals alongside resveratrol, green tea catechins (EGCG) and irvingia gabonensis. When used to compliment a natural food diet void of wheat and refined carbohydrates, piceatannol may be an important component to achieve natural weight management goals.

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Vitamin D Prevents Systemic Inflammation to Keep Chronic Diseases in Check

December 3, 2012
Vitamin D Prevents Systemic Inflammation to Prevent Chronic Diseases

Vitamin D Prevents Systemic Inflammation to Prevent Chronic Diseases

The connection between cellular saturation of the prohormone, vitamin D and development of chronic conditions ranging from cancer, dementia, stroke and heart disease have been well documented among forward-thinking scientists for at least a decade now. The specific mechanism of action has not been well documented though, as most studies have not drawn a clear line between blood levels of vitamin D and disease prevention.

High Vitamin D Status Inhibits Inflammatory Messengers to Prevent Chronic Disease

High Vitamin D Status Inhibits Inflammatory Messengers to Prevent Chronic Disease

High Vitamin D Status Inhibits Inflammatory Messengers to Prevent Chronic Disease

Researchers from National Jewish Health reporting in The Journal of Immunology have discovered specific molecular and signaling events by which vitamin D inhibits inflammation to help prevent and possibly even treat a host of potentially deadly diseases. Current levels considered satisfactory by most medical professionals did not inhibit the inflammatory cascade, leading to the progression of many forms of disease. Conversely, individuals that maintain significantly higher blood levels of vitamin D had lower levels of inflammatory markers known to aggravate disease progression and were protected against the major killers so prevalent today.

The study author, Dr. Elena Goleva noted that this research “goes beyond previous associations of vitamin D with various health outcomes. It outlines a clear chain of cellular events, from the binding of DNA, through a specific signaling pathway, to the reduction of proteins known to trigger inflammation.” Current guidelines call for minimum vitamin D blood serum levels of 20 ng/ml, a benchmark set decades ago that was intended to prevent rickets in children and promote bone health. Researchers conducting this study found improvement in inflammation levels at a minimum of 30 ng/ml. leaving millions at risk for chronic disease.

Check Vitamin D Blood Levels Every Six Months to Prevent Inflammation

Check Vitamin D Blood Levels Every Six Months to Prevent Inflammation

Check Vitamin D Blood Levels Every Six Months to Prevent Inflammation

Scientists conducting this study examined the specific mechanisms exhibited by vitamin D to act on immune and inflammatory pathways. They incubated white blood cells with different saturation levels of vitamin D and then exposed the culture to an inflammatory molecule known to promote intense inflammatory responses. Cells exposed to low levels of vitamin D (less than 15 ng/ml) produced excessive levels of the inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-alpha, associated with disease development and progression. The highest level of inflammatory inhibition occurred at 50 ng/ml and above as cells become fully saturated with the prohormone and maximum immune response is observed.

Researchers identified a new location where the vitamin-D receptor appears to bind directly to DNA and activate a gene known as MKP-1, interfering with the inflammatory cascade promoted by long-term stress and a highly refined, processed food diet. Dr. Goleva concluded “The fact that we showed a dose-dependent and varying response to levels commonly found in humans also adds weight to the argument for vitamin D’s role in immune and inflammatory conditions.” Maintain your vitamin D blood levels above 50 ng/ml (measured with the 25(OH)D test) to afford maximum protection against chronic inflammatory-mediated diseases.

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Fish Oil Supplements Improve Systemic Inflammation to Slash Heart Disease Risk

November 1, 2012
Omega-3 Fats Slash Inflammation to Fight Cancer and Heart Disease

Omega-3 Fats Slash Inflammation to Fight Cancer and Heart Disease

It is a commonly accepted fact within the medical research community that systemic inflammation is a primary cause of many forms of cancer, heart disease and other chronic diseases that take the lives of millions well before their time. Poor diet, stress and lifestyle factors all contribute to inflammation that overworks body metabolism and encourages damage to the delicate vascular system that feeds our heart. Production of inflammatory chemical markers such as cytokines are accelerated over months and years of exposure that creates an environment known to encourage the spread of cancer cells and propagate cardiovascular disease.

Two independent studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition have found that supplementing Omega-3 fats lowers the release of inflammatory biomarkers that are involved in damage to cells called soluble adhesion molecules. Researchers have demonstrated that Omega-3 fats from fish oil supplements effectively lower levels of circulating adhesion molecules to decrease risk of atherosclerosis and counteract the pro-carcinogenic action of these damaging compounds produced by long-term inflammation throughout the body.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Inhibit Adhesion Molecules to Lower Heart Disease Risk

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Inhibit Adhesion Molecules to Lower Heart Disease Risk

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Inhibit Adhesion Molecules to Lower Heart Disease Risk

To prepare their work, researchers conducted a meta-analysis on eighteen separate studies that examined the effect of soluble adhesion molecules (sICAM-1) and Omega-3 fats and their impact on systemic inflammatory markers in the body. The results showed that Omega-3 supplements were associated with sICAM-1 reductions in both healthy people and subjects with abnormal blood lipid levels.

The scientists commented “This finding suggests that omega-3 PUFA reduces inflammation by selectively inhibiting monocyte activation rather than endothelial activation… and supports the notion that omega-3 PUFA can be supplemented to prevent the development and progression of atherosclerosis.” The Omega fats were found to lower levels of oxidized LDL cholesterol molecules and decrease particle size, both factors known to lower cardiovascular risk. The fats were also found to inhibit platelet aggregation or clumping and resolve particle adhesion properties to allow blood to flow freely through the vascular arteries.

Eat Fish Three Times Each Week or Supplement Daily with Distilled Fish Oil

Eat Fish Three Times Each Week or Supplement Daily with Distilled Fish Oil

Eat Fish Three Times Each Week or Supplement Daily with Distilled Fish Oil

A second research study performed in France determined that Omega-3 fats lower breast and prostate cancer risk in a cohort of 408 individuals with the disease, compared to 760 healthy control subjects. The scientists found a direct correlation between cancer development and Omega-3 supplementation, again by inhibiting the expression of adhesion molecules required for cancer cells to propagate.

Oily fish is the natural food source for pre-formed DHA and EPA Omega-3 fats. Many people avoid fish due to mercury contamination and unknown harvesting methods, making supplementation with a moleculary distilled form a viable option. Plant-based Omega-3 sources such as walnuts and flax seeds do not provide a good source of the necessary pre-formed long-chain fats, and while they are very healthy foods, do not yield a reliable supply of EPA and DHA fats. Read supplement labeling for a brand yielding 1,200 to 2,400 mg each day of combined EPA/DHA Omega-3 fats to lower the risks associated with heart disease and cancer.

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Sugary Drinks Boost Heart Disease In Men by Twenty Percent

October 13, 2012
Sweetened Beverages Increase Heart Disease Risk In Men

Sweetened Beverages Increase Heart Disease Risk In Men

Researchers publishing the results of a study in the prestigious American Heart Association journal Circulation have found that men who drank a 12-ounce sugar-sweetened beverage a day had a 20 percent higher risk of heart disease compared to men who didn’t drink any sugar-sweetened drinks. This should come as no surprise as sweetened (and calorie-free) beverages have come under scrutiny for contributing to increased risk of potentially fatal conditions such as diabetes, dementia, stroke, liver necrosis (fatty liver), overweight and obesity.

Excess glucose in the bloodstream is easily converted to triglycerides by the liver and promptly stored as fat, typically around the waistline for use during leaner times. This survival mechanism worked very well for our ancestors of several hundred generations past, but times of plenty now exist regularly, several times each day for most.

Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Boost Blood Fats to Significantly Increase Heart Disease Risk

Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Boost Blood Fats to Significantly Increase Heart Disease Risk

Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Boost Blood Fats to Significantly Increase Heart Disease Risk

Humans were never metabolically wired to consume the large amount of nutrient-poor calories as we do today, and it is leading to an early grave for millions. The bottom line is simple: eliminate calories from sugar-sweetened beverages and lower your risk of heart disease by one-fifth.

Researchers reviewed the beverage consuming habits of 42,883 men in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, and after controlling for risk factors including smoking, physical inactivity, alcohol use and family history of heart disease, they determined that daily consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages resulted in a twenty percent increase in cardiovascular disease. Scientists found that less frequent consumption, on the order of twice weekly to twice monthly did not increase risk.

Eliminate Sugary Drinks in Favor of Water, Green and White Teas

Eliminate Sugary Drinks in Favor of Water, Green and White Teas

Eliminate Sugary Drinks in Favor of Water, Green and White Teas

Lead study author, Dr. Frank Hu and his team from the Harvard School of Public Health measured blood markers for cardiovascular disease in the group such as C-reactive protein (CRP), potentially damaging blood fats including triglycerides and oxidized LDL cholesterol as well as good lipids known as high-density lipoproteins (HDL). They found that compared to a group of non-sweetened beverage drinkers, the test participants had significantly elevated levels of triglyceride, CRP and lower HDL levels.

These findings are to be expected with excess consumption of glucose. Excess sugar in the blood, when not required for energy to fuel metabolic processes is rapidly converted to free circulating blood fats and then stored as body fat. High levels of LDL cholesterol become oxidized (making the lipoprotein molecules sticky) where they are easily combined with calcium and other materials in the blood and are incorporated into atherosclerotic plaque. Most health-minded people will eliminate sugar-sweetened beverages entirely from their diet, as well as dramatically reduce all sources of quick-releasing refined carbohydrates to dramatically lower their risk of heart disease.

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Broccoli Influences Gene Expression to Halt Cancer Development

September 25, 2012
Crucifers Found in Broccoli Help Prevent Cancer

Crucifers Found in Broccoli Help Prevent Cancer

Broccoli is a super star member of the cruciferous family, well known and documented as an immune boosting food that supports the healthy clearance of aberrant cancer cells before they multiply and develop into detectable tumors. Researchers reporting in the journal Clinical Epigenetics have found that the bioactive compound in broccoli, sulforaphane provides a multi-modal attack against cancer cell development and proliferation through the complex mechanism of epigenetics.

Epigenetics refers to the way that diet, toxins and other environmental contributors can change which genes get activated, or “expressed” within our genetic code to guide the accurate replication essential to cellular metabolism and repair. This can play a powerful role in preventing and promoting many chronic illnesses from cancer to heart disease and other health issues. Consuming broccoli raw or lightly steamed several times each week can supply a potent dose of sulforaphane to help prevent many types of cancer.

Broccoli and Cruciferous Vegetables Directly Influence Genetic Expression to Inhibit Cancer

Broccoli Influences our DNA to Prevent Deadly Mutations

Broccoli Influences our DNA to Prevent Deadly Mutations

In past research bodies, scientists have documented the pathway utilized by sulforaphane to inhibit the action of an enzyme known as histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitor) that helps restore proper balance and helps prevent the development of cancer. Researchers at the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University have uncovered a second mechanism, DNA methylation that works in concert with HDAC inhibitors that work to maintain proper cell function. Sulforaphane from broccoli and other crucifers stimulates both HDAC and DNA methylation pathways in a synergistic fashion to prevent cancer development.

The lead study author, Dr. Emily Ho commented regarding the sulforaphane-cancer connection “Cancer is very complex and it’s usually not just one thing that has gone wrong… it’s increasingly clear that sulforaphane is a real multi-tasker. The more we find out about it, the more benefits it appears to have.”

Nutritionists Recommend Three to Five Servings of Broccoli Every Week

Eat Broccoli Several Times Each Week to Benefit

Eat Broccoli Several Times Each Week to Benefit

DNA methylation controls the healthy expression of genes. When this pathway is blocked scientists have found a significantly increased risk of conditions including cardiovascular disease, immune function, neurodegenerative disease and even aging. Foods that provide sulfur groups necessary for proper DNA methylation include onions, garlic, nuts and seeds. Sulforaphane from broccoli is found in this research to stimulate the methylation path to enable normal gene expression to thwart cancer cell genesis.

Nutrition experts recommend consuming one to two servings of broccoli (or other members of the crucifer family such as cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts or kale) several days of the week. A rapidly growing body of evidence demonstrates that the natural, active compounds found in these vegetables help to prevent cancer and other chronic disease by dealing a two-step knockout blow to influence gene expression.

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Vitamin D Lowers Systemic Inflammation to Decrease Heart Disease Risk

September 10, 2012
Vitamin D Dramatically Lowers Heart Disease Risk

Vitamin D Dramatically Lowers Heart Disease Risk

Thousands of research studies have demonstrated the powerful health-promoting properties of the prohormone compound, vitamin D3. Researchers publishing in The Journal of Immunology explain the specific molecular and signaling events by which vitamin D inhibits inflammation in the human body. In a very detailed analysis, scientists show that low blood circulating levels of vitamin D do not adequately inhibit the inflammatory cascade necessary to turn off this potentially destructive mechanism.

Low levels of inflammation, normally used by the body to fight pathogenic invaders, become a primary cause of heart disease, diabetes, many cancer lines and Alzheimer’s dementia.  Additional evidence reported in the British Journal of Nutrition demonstrates that adequate vitamin D levels reduce critical markers of cardiovascular health and can lead to significant reductions in body fat in overweight and obese people. It is critical to have your vitamin D level checked, and supplement as necessary to lower inflammation levels and risk of heart disease.

Vitamin D Lowers Inflammation to Prevent Chronic Disease and Stimulate Immune Response Systems

Vitamin D From Gelcaps Reduces Metabolic Inflammation

Vitamin D From Gelcaps Reduces Metabolic Inflammation

Dr. Elena Goleva, lead scientist from National Jewish Health, found that prior studies with vitamin D show a clear and positive link between blood levels of the prohormone and a variety of different health outcomes. Dr. Goleva and her team looked for specific mechanisms to explain precisely how vitamin D functions at the cellular level to prevent disease in the human body.

Dr. Goleva and her team of researchers noted that vitamin D is a catalyst that initiates “a clear chain of cellular events, from the binding of DNA, through a specific signaling pathway, to the reduction of proteins known to trigger inflammation.”  To test how vitamin D acts on immune and inflammatory pathways, team scientists exposed human white blood cells to varying levels of vitamin D and exposed them to an agent known to promote intense inflammatory responses and advance disease processes.

Vitamin D Lowers Inflammatory Markers and Increases Health-Promoting HDL Cholesterol

Vitamin D Improves the Immune Capacity of White Blood Cells

Vitamin D Improves the Immune Capacity of White Blood Cells

White blood cells that were incubated with no vitamin D or a solution of 15 ng/mL produced very high levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-alpha. In vivo, these signaling messengers are known to be responsible for the development and progression of cardiovascular disease, certain forms of cancer and dementia. Cells incubated at a concentration of 30 ng/mL and above showed a significantly reduced response, while the highest level of inflammatory inhibition occurred at 50 ng/ml.

Supporting evidence for the health-promoting effect of vitamin D as reported in the journal BMJ shows marked improvement in cardiovascular biomarkers including HDL cholesterol. Additionally, researchers found the hormone-like substance lowered the risk of lipid peroxidation, the process responsible for making LDL cholesterol molecules sticky and prone to form atherosclerotic plaque. They also determined that high circulating levels of vitamin D were associated with “significant reductions in fat mass” in overweight and obese people.

There should be no doubt that the millions of people living with grossly sub-optimal vitamin D levels are dramatically increasing their risk of developing a plethora of potentially deadly illnesses. Health-minded individuals will ensure they maintain a circulating blood level of 50 to 70 ng/mL by means of a 25(OH)D blood test to regulate systemic inflammation and fight chronic disease.

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Vitamin D Helps Prevent Heart Disease, Dementia and Diabetes

August 27, 2012
Vitamin D Supplements Prevent Chronic Diseases

Vitamin D Supplements Prevent Chronic Diseases

Scientific research bodies extolling the amazing virtues of the prohormone, vitamin D have been published in rapid succession to explain the preventive mechanism shown to prevent cardiovascular disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. Three independent reviews demonstrate that maintaining a vitamin D blood level between 50 and 70 ng/mL can provide optimal protection against many chronic diseases.

Researchers’ publishing in the journal Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases provide evidence that vitamin D is intrinsically involved in the homeostasis of the cardiovascular system. Disruption of the body’s natural stasis system contributes to diabetes, obesity, elevated blood lipids, high blood pressure, endothelial dysfunction, stroke and risk of coronary artery disease. Scientists advise supplementation of 4,000 to 8,000 IU of vitamin D per day to achieve optimal levels, far above the anemic 400 IU currently recommended.

Vitamin D Controls Genetic Receptors to Guard against Chronic Disease

Vitamin D is Shown to Work at the Genetic Level to Halt Heart Disease

Vitamin D is Shown to Work at the Genetic Level to Halt Heart Disease

Scientists at the University of Miami’s School of Medicine demonstrate a direct genetic link between low vitamin D levels and the development of amyloid proteins in the brain, commonly associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Reporting in the journal Neurobiology of Aging, researchers looked at gene signaling in relation to the vitamin D receptor in 492 late onset Alzheimer’s patients and 496 control subjects.

When vitamin D receptors were not activated on the surface of individual cells due to poor vitamin D saturation in the blood, precise gene signaling went awry that halted normal clearance of the dementia-related protein clumps. The team conducting the study concluded “Our findings are consistent with epidemiology studies suggesting that vitamin D insufficiency increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.”

Test Vitamin D Blood Levels Regularly to Ensure Optimal Range

Test Vitamin D Blood Levels Regularly to Achieve Optimal Disease Protection

Test Vitamin D Blood Levels Regularly to Achieve Optimal Disease Protection

Researchers in Spain evaluated the vitamin D status of 1,226 individuals in 1996. The participants were again tested eight years later, and vitamin D levels were contrasted with development of diabetes over the course of the study. The results, published in the journal Clinical Nutrition, found that those with vitamin D blood levels above 18.5 ng/mL had an 83 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes during the eight year period. No one in the study with a vitamin D score over 30 ng/mL developed type 2 diabetes.

It has become very clear from countless research studies published over the past decade that vitamin D qualifies among the most crucial and essential hormone-based nutrients. And still millions of people continue to place themselves at unnecessary risk by ignoring this information.

Most people above the age of twenty-one should supplement with a minimum of 2,000 IU of vitamin D every day and have their blood tested to ensure they reach the optimal range of 50 to 70 ng/mL. Extensive research provides more than sufficient evidence that maintaining a proper vitamin D level can dramatically lower the risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease diabetes and many other chronic illnesses.

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