News

Osteoporosis - Not Just a Calcium and Vitamin D Deficiency!

27 February, 2014

 

The most common word that people think of when discussing bone health is calcium. The public has been lead to believe that as long as you have adequate calcium in your diet then you have strong bones. Unfortunately, this is a half-truth and the numbers of individuals developing Osteoporosis is increasing despite efforts to increase calcium intake via dairy, fortified foods and supplements. The truth is your bones consist of many different nutrients, in addition to calcium, and there are diet and lifestyle factors that lead to osteoporosis. I would like to discuss some of these key points in this newsletter so that you have a more complete overview on how to keep your bones strong!

Nutrients That Build the Bone Matrix

Bone is a living tissue composed of minerals, proteins (mainly collagen) and water. Bone is constantly building up and breaking down, also known as remodelling. There are cells that are responsible for the building called osteoblasts and the ones that break bone down are called osteoclasts. You need both working properly to be healthy! As I mentioned calcium is not the only mineral required to make healthy, strong bone. Here is a list of minerals and two important vitamins necessary to allow the continual bone remodelling process to occur:

Zinc is involved in osteoblast, the bone-forming cells, production.

Manganese is required for the bone matrix formation.

Copper provides the stable adhesion of elastin to collagen to give bone flexibility so it is strong as steel but light as wood.

Silica is an essential nutrient for healthy bone metabolism, triggering the deposit of calcium and phosphate into bone.

Magnesium is as important as calcium to building bone and should be in a 1 to 1 ratio with calcium. Our diets with excess calcium, especially added to many foods, is creating a magnesium deficient state in many people.

Boron helps reduce urinary excretion of calcium and magnesium thereby preserving these two minerals for bone building.

Vitamin D is critical to facilitate the absorption of calcium from the intestines (from your food) into the bloodstream where it can be utilized by the cells.

Vitamin K2 has a direct bone building effect once calcium is absorbed into the bloodstream as K2 is responsible to deposit calcium into your bones and keep it out of the soft tissues like your joints, arteries and brain.

 

Foods That Build and Foods That Destroy Bone

I recommend eating a whole foods diet containing high quality animal and plant based products. All the essential minerals and vitamins necessary for excellent health come from these sources and I encourage you to purchase local, organic produce and free range pastured animal products when possible. This latter recommendation is especially important to obtain Vitamin K2 as it has become deficient in the modern diet because of industrial farming practices. Animals that feed on grass, especially in the summer months, obtain Vitamin K2 and then we either eat the eggs, dairy or the meat itself to ensure our supply. Since modern animals are fed only grain, Vitamin K2 is difficult to obtain leading to a functional deficiency as the bacteria in our intestines can manufacture small amounts, but not enough for robust health. Furthermore, the animal products that contain the most Vitamin K2 are the ones people have been dissuaded from eating in the last 40 years under the misguided theory of "they are bad for your heart" such as whole fat milk and dairy products like high fat cheeses such as Brie and Gouda, liver and egg yolks. A fermented soy product called natto, contains high amounts of Vitamin K2 but is not very popular in the West compared to Asia.

The foods that I recommend you remove from your diet such as processed, packaged, deep-fried, microwaveable meals contain very little of the essential minerals and vitamins required to build healthy bone. Furthermore, products like soda pop which are extremely acidic deplete calcium and magnesium stores rapidly, therefore weakening your bone structure quickly. Having a bit of junk food is not the end of the world when the rest of your diet is loaded with essential nutrients, but it goes to show what poor dietary habits do to your body as a whole, your bone matrix in particular!


Exercise to Prevent Bone Loss

Remember that bone is living tissue that requires regular physical activity in order to renew and rebuild itself. Peak bone mass is achieved in adulthood and then begins a slow decline. Exercise is very important in maintaining healthy bone mass. Weight-bearing exercise is one of the most effective remedies against osteoporosis. Your bones are actually very porous and soft, and as you get older, your bones can easily become less dense and hence, more brittle especially if you are inactive.

Resistance training can combat this effect because as you put more tension on your muscles it puts more pressure on your bones, which then respond by continuously creating fresh, new bone. In addition, as you build more muscle, and make the muscle that you already have stronger, you also put more constant pressure on your bones.


Supplements to Help Build and Maintain Strong Bones

There are some good bone building formulas on the market which contain all of the previously mentioned vitamins and minerals. As you know I recommend a good quality multi vitamin and mineral supplement for everyone as most people do not get enough essential nutrients from their diet alone to experience optimal health. For those of you who take a multi, and eat a high quality diet but still want to ensure you don't get Osteoporosis, or for those of you who want to be extra proactive; take a bone building formula and some extra Vitamin K2. For those of you who are taking just calcium and Vitamin D, please add magnesium and Vitamin K2 to make sure you don't have excess calcium build up in your soft tissue, like joints or worse arteries! 
I never recommend high doses of Vitamin D without the balancing of Vitamin K2; either through dietary sources and/or supplement form.

This month's featured product is Preferred Nutrition's Vitamin K2 and they use the MK-7 version, which is the most long-lasting in the body. One capsule daily, containing 100mcg, is sufficient for a maintenance dose.

Hopefully, I have presented some information that will make you think about your skeleton differently and how important your living bone structure is to your overall health. Further information can be found from the sources below. I encourage you to purchase Dr. Rheaume-Bleue's book for the latest info on the forgotten nutrient, Vitamin K2.

 

Sources:

Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox “ Dr. Kate Rheaume-Bleue ND

The Bone “ Building Solution “ Sam Graci and Dr. Carolyn DeMarco MD

The Calcium Lie Every Woman Should Know “ Mercola.com Dec. 2010

How to get the healthiest, nutrient rich foods and when to supplement

15 August, 2013


Living Science soil depletion

I believe in quality over quantity when it comes to the food we put in our bodies. Eating the right amount of quality food for your body-type trumps trying to calculate each calorie of poor to average quality food any day!


There is so much discussion about whether “organic” truly means much healthier and if it is worth the extra money.  There is also confusion amongst the public and scientists as to whether organic foods contain more nutrients so what are you supposed to do?

I would like to give my opinion on this broad topic in this month’s newsletter to ensure you have the knowledge to remain on your path to excellent health. The following are some key points to the discussion:

1) Soil health and plant health = the level of YOUR health.

This quote is the one that really got me thinking years ago about getting enough minerals:

US Senate Document #265: “The alarming fact is that food – fruits and vegetables and grains are now being raised on millions of acres of land that no longer contain enough of the needed minerals – are starving us no matter how much of them we eat. No man of today can eat enough fruits and vegetables to supply his system with the mineral salts he requires for perfect health because his stomach isn’t big enough to hold them”. -  written in 1936!

This is the same situation in Canada and it has been known for years the soils are depleted of optimal levels of minerals and other nutrients. However, with lots of fertilizers and chemicals plants will still grow and we get something from the soil. It is just that we don’t get enough for excellent health.

Plus, there are numerous (100’s of tonnes per year) chemicals like insecticides, being sprayed on our food because the more the soil becomes depleted of nutrients and living organisms, the more chemicals you need to prop up weak plants. Our bodies need many nutrients to detoxify these chemicals and if many of the trace elements like minerals are not in your diet, your health suffers. So the cycle continues…

2) Organic food is usually better than “conventional” but not necessarily the best.

What I mean by this statement is that unfortunately the waters have become muddied by large corporations buying up some organic operations. This results in standards being watered down and costs being passed on to the consumer for “certified organic” status.
Furthermore, the cost of transportation has increased in the past decade bringing into question the purchase of an organic carrot from California versus a locally grown one from a Farmer’s Market?

Even organic beef is creating a dilemma as it costs more to feed the cattle certified organic grain BUT cows are meant to eat grass! I choose to purchase non-organic grass-fed beef for less money and you get a better product. I support local growers as much as possible and many more people are shopping at health stores who stock local products, purchasing from food co-ops, or even growing their own garden. With these choices you are most likely getting food with more nutrients and fewer chemicals-and you can ask the farmer directly!

3) “If I eat local, organic food do I still need vitamin and mineral supplements?”

I get asked this all the time and the answer is different for everyone depending on their family history, health history, job and stress levels.  My belief is that a person living in a rural setting (with clean air, water, eating local food, and has a stress-free lifestyle) has a better chance than a city dweller (breathing polluted air, fast food every meal and works 10 stressful hours daily) if they don’t take supplements.

Each case is different, however many of the best companies make whole food supplements with ingredients from the best soil-rich farms. The powder is easy to mix in water ensuring you obtain high amounts of nutrients, like minerals. This is a great addition to eating high quality foods and an exceptional insurance policy to avoid diseases related to nutrient deficiencies.

I hope I have given you some ideas to contemplate and, more importantly, initiate to keep you and your family in excellent health. For more information on organic food, gardening, soil amendment practices and getting optimal nutrients into your body, see the below links.

http://www.cog.ca/
http://www.nutritionsecurity.org/
http://www.acresusa.com/magazines/magazine.htm

10 Benefits to Vitamin C

15 August, 2013

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin. Your body doesn’t retain vitamin C and any excess is released. The human body can’t produce vitamin C on its own, but it is vital to our health. Having the right levels of vitamin C is related to a number of diverse health benefits.


Here’s a quick list:

  1. Stress – Vitamin C is beneficial to individuals whose immune system has been weakened due to stress.
  2. Colds – Vitamin C may not cure the common cold but some studies have shown that it may reduce the duration of the cold and it may help reduce the chance of serious complications such as pneumonia.
  3. Stroke – High vitamin C intake has been linked with lower risk of stroke. One Japanese study showed a 29% lower risk for those with high levels of vitamin C in their blood.
  4. Heart Disease – Vitamin C may protect against arterial damage thereby lowering the risk of heart disease.
  5. Osteoarthritis – Vitamin C is essential for the body to make collagen, which is a part of normal cartilage. Cartilage is destroyed in osteoarthritis, putting pressure on bones and joints.
  6. Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) – Vitamin C is key to eye health and studies have shown that the eye may need plenty of vitamin C to function properly. Studies have shown that vitamin C in combination with other antioxidants can prevent or slow the progress of AMD.
  7. Asthma – Some studies show that low levels of vitamin C are more common in people with asthma linking low levels of vitamin C with the occurrence of asthma.
  8. Cataracts – Some studies show increased blood levels of vitamin C are associated with decreased risk of cataracts.
  9. Gout – Vitamin C may be useful in lowering serum uric acid levels, resulting in a correspondingly lower incidence of gout.
  10. Skin Aging – Higher vitamin C intakes are associated with a lower likelihood of a wrinkled appearance, dryness of the skin, and a better skin-aging appearance.

While the role of vitamin C is still being studied, one thing is very clear: vitamin C is key to overall health. Its benefits are many and diverse. Vitamin C Complex from Progressive has 600 mg per capsule. Vitamin C Complex is formulated for optimal absorption and antioxidant protection with 7 vitamin sources, 8 fruit extracts and 7 support nutrients.

Resources:

WebMD: The Benefits of Vitamin C
University of Maryland Medical Center: Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)
Linus Pauling Institute: Vitamin C
Wikipedia.com: Vitamin C

Nutritional Secrets You Need To Know To Be A Successful Hockey Player

15 August, 2013

NUTRITIONAL GLOSSARY

Protein:
Next to water, protein is the second most plentiful substance in our body, making up 20% of one's body weight. Organs, muscles, skin, hair and nails consist mainly of protein. Each protein molecule is comprised of smaller units called amino acids. There are 20 amino acids of which 8 are essential - meaning the body cannot manufacture them and must come from the diet. The best food sources for protein are meat, poultry, eggs, dairy, fish and seafood.

Carbohydrate:
A carbohydrate is the primary energy source for one's body. Just as the automobile runs on gasoline, the body runs on carbohydrates. All carbohydrate comes from plants and the word starch is often used interchangeably with carbohydrate to describe foods like potato, bread, pasta etc. Each carbohydrate molecule consists of smaller units called sugars. Various types of sugars include glucose, fructose, lactose, sucrose and more. The body functions most efficiently on complex rather than refined or "white" carbohydrates. The best food sources for carbohydrates are whole grains, whole grain breads, beans, legumes, fruits and vegetables.

Fats:
Fats perform many essential functions in the body. They are necessary to form the structure of all cells and play key roles in all metabolic activities within the cell. Furthermore, fat is used as an energy "reserve" for the body in times of need. Fats and oils, also called lipids, come in many forms, shapes and sizes. Saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are some examples. Small molecules called fatty acids, are the building blocks of all fats and oils both in our body and in our foods. Two fats, Omega 3 and Omega 6, are known as essential fatty acids (EFA's), meaning they must come from one's diet because the body cannot make them. The best food sources for healthy fats are deep water fish (salmon, cod, herring, etc.) and non-hydrogenated vegetable oils (extra virgin olive oil, extra virgin coconut and flaxseed), as well as nuts, seeds and butter.

Vitamins:
Vitamins are the biochemical "nuts and bolts" that enable the large molecules of proteins, carbohydrates and fats comprising one's tissues to function as a coordinated unit. As coenzymes, vitamins work with enzymes, thereby allowing all activities that occur in the body to be carried out, as they should. Vitamins like A, C, E and B complex, must be obtained from food. Both plant and animal sources are known for their particular concentration of one or more essential vitamin(s).

Minerals:
Minerals are required by all living cells, plant and animal, for function and structure. For example minerals are needed for the formation of bone and blood, and for thecomposition of all bodily fluids, such as saliva and perspiration. Like vitamins, minerals function as co-enzymes, enabling the body to perform its functions including energy production, growth and healing. All enzyme activities involve minerals; therefore minerals are essential for proper utilization of vitamins and other nutrients. Major minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium as well as the trace elements like zinc, iron, and copper must be acquired from foods. Again, various animal and plant sources offer variable concentrations of the minerals needed by humans.

GAME DAY NUTRITION

It is important to fuel your body with the proper foods and liquids both before and after practice/games. This will give you the best opportunity to skate faster with more endurance, recover quickly between ice times and allow you to be mentally focused on your game. Just as you would not wear figure skates to play hockey, why would you expect to be at the top of your game by eating a poor diet.

Your main goal for a successful hockey season is to consistently have high energy at each ice time (balanced blood sugar), get proper rest and recovery between games, and prevent muscle wasting. Following these nutritional recommendations will allow you to do all of the above. It is important to note that: 1) it takes approximately 3 to 4 hours for meals to digest and be available to your body as energy and build muscle; 2) you need a mixture of all types of foods to fuel your body for the entire day (but some foods are better than others for pre-game meals).

Pre-Game:
1) Eat well 3 to 4 hours before a game.
2) If you become hungry before a game - a small snack and water 1 hour beforehand.
3) Post game food is important to fuel your body for the next day.

Foods to avoid on game day:
1. Junk Food: candy, soda pop, chocolate, potato chips, all deep-fried foods like french fries. All junk food imbalances your body chemistry so that you will have less energy and endurance.
2. Dairy products, especially milk, within 1 to 2 hours of skating. Dairy is mucus producing which causes breathing problems for many players - something you don't want before competition. Save it for after a game if you need to have it.

Meals:
Breakfast: a) 1-2 eggs + whole grain toast with butter or coconut oil b) 1 bowl oatmeal + toast with almond butter
Lunch: a balanced meal containing some protein, fat, carbohydrate (see nutritional glossary). Examples: a) pasta + meat sauce, b) chicken + rice + vegetables, c) roast beef sandwiches.
Supper: Same as lunch but a little more food to replenish your body especially for the next day.
Snacks: Protein bar, trail mix + 1 fruit, whey protein shake (with ½ water and ½ juice).
Water: Essential for any serious athlete! 2-3 litres must be consumed throughout the day.

Fast Food Restaurants:
It is best to eat at better quality restaurants or make your own food, however if you eat at McDonald's, Burger King etc. there are still better choices you can make. For example: a burger with a salad or any meat sub with lots of veggies at Subway. Remember that fries, pop, and potato chips are performance killers so avoid them on game days.

WATER VS. COKE

WATER - we all know water is important!
• 75% of Canadians are chronically dehydrated.
• In 37% of Canadians, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.
• Even MILD dehydration will slow down one's metabolism as much as 3%.
• One glass of water shuts down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of the dieters studied at the University of Washington.
• Lack of water is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.
• Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease bacj and joint pain in up to 80% of sufferers.
• A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.
• Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by an amazing 79%. One is also 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

Are you drinking the amount of water you should every day? I recommend drinking one liter of water for every 75 lbs. that you weigh.

COKE!
• In many states in the USA, the highway patrol carries two gallons of Coke in the trunk to remove blood from the highway after a car accident.
• You can put a T-bone steak in a bowl of Coke and it will be gone in two days.
• To clean a toilet: pour a can of Coca-Cola into the toilet and let the real thing" sit for one hour, and then flush clean. The citric acid in Coke removes stains from vitreous china.
• To remove rust spots from chrome car bumpers: rub the bumper with a crumpled-up piece of Reynolds Wrap aluminum foil dipped in Coca-Cola.
• Pour a can of Coca-Cola over the terminals on a car battery to bubble away the corrosion.
• To loosen a rusted bolt: apply a cloth soaked in Coca-Cola to the bolt for several minutes.
• Wipe your car windshield with Coca-Cola to remove road haze.
• To remove grease from clothes: empty a can of Coke into a load of greasy clothes, add detergent, and run through a regular cycle. The Coca-Cola will help loosen grease stains.
• The active ingredient in Coke is phosphoric acid. Its pH is 2.8 and it will dissolve a nail in about 4 days.
• To carry Coca-Cola syrup (the concentrate) a commercial truck must use the "Hazardous
• Material" place cards reserved for highly corrosive materials.
• The distributors of Coke have been using it to clean the engines of their trucks for about 20 years!

Now the question is - would you like a glass of water or a Coke?

FOOD SUPPLEMENTS - ARE THEY BENEFICIAL?

It's hard to believe but some people still resist taking food supplements like vitamins, minerals, and herbs. I always eat balanced meals - why bother? I feel fine. This person goes through life in the fast lane and scoffs at the concept of preventive nutrition and thinks why should I worry? Maybe he/she should worry a little!
When life was simpler and closer to the earth, we could eat nutritious meals that contained the right amount of vitamins and minerals. Today, however, we need to be responsible for our health. We need to learn how to take care of ourselves in a polluted environment. We need to learn the elements of good nutrition, one of which is the proper use of food supplements. Why should we take food supplements? Why can't we depend on the food we eat to supply the proper vitamins and minerals? Consider this quote:

US Senate Document #265: "The alarming fact is that food - fruits and vegetables and grains are now being raised on millions of acres of land that no longer contain enough of the needed minerals - are starving us no matter how much of them we eat. No man of today can eat enough fruits and vegetables to supply his system with the mineral salts he requires for perfect health because his stomach isn't big enough to hold them". - written in 1936!

Things are the same in Canada and have gotten much worse in the last 70 years. Here are a few more reasons to indicate the necessity of food supplements:
• The soil our foods grow in are no longer pure. It has been overworked, overdeveloped and has been polluted by chemical fertilizers, insecticides and waste.
• Many of the fruits and vegetables we buy at the supermarkets have been harvested green and ripened with gas. This immature produce is stored shipped great distances. It takes a week to ship a load of lettuce, for example, from California to Ontario. Thus, our produce loses its freshness, nutritional value and even its natural color.
• Most of the foods we eat are dead and processed. They have been chemically fertilized, refined, processed, enriched and stored. The nutrients taken out are replaced by chemicals.
• White flour and white sugar are about as healthy as sandpaper.
• The processed foods we buy are usually overcooked. Their vitamins are dumped out with the cooking water. They are deep-fried and coated with sauces and other decorative but not very nutritious things.

With all of these factors to consider make an appointment with me and enjoy the benefits of:
1. Discovering the exact vitamins and minerals your body needs. This is done through a safe, non-invasive computerized testing program.
2. Saving you time and money from not buying and trying supplements you don't need.

Visit Living Science Clinic for more information or contact Bruce Bonner.

Overview of Coenzyme Q10

15 August, 2013

Coenzyme Q10, also referred to as CoQ10 or ubiquinone, is a vitamin-like compound which is present in all cells. It occurs naturally in the body and is found in highest amounts in the mitochondria, where cellular energy is created. CoQ10 levels are highest in the hardest-working tissues of the body, especially the heart.

Coenzyme Q10 is an antioxidant, that is, it helps to protect cells from damage caused by the body's own free radicals. The body produces free radicals in the normal course of energy production. However as we get older our bodies generate an excess of free radicals. This can be deleterious for individuals whose bodies are not producing enough Coenzyme Q10 and other antioxidants to control these free radicals.

Coenzyme Q10 has several different actions in the body. Its most notable effects are:

  • Antioxidant - it scavenges free radicals
  • Improves the efficacy of cellular energy production in the mitochondria (energy factories) of the cell
  • Regulates genes concerned with energy production
  • Stabilizes membranes

As we age there is a decline in the amount of CoQ10 our body produces. It is not possible to get large amounts of CoQ10 from diet alone. Therefore taking a daily supplement, especially as we age, can increase cell energy levels and strengthen the body's antioxidant defence network.

 

What is ubiquinol?

Until recently most CoQ10 supplements on the market offered the ubiquinone form of CoQ10. However, in order for this standard CoQ10 (ubiquinone) to be properly utilized in the body, it must be first converted to its active antioxidant form called ubiquinol. Ubiquinone (CoQ10) levels within the body typically begin decreasing as early as age 20, suggesting that it has a close connection with aging. Since our ability to convert CoQ10 becomes very poor as we age, the best way to achieve optimal benefits of CoQ10 is the ready-to-use activated form – ubiquinol, the biologically superior form of CoQ10. In Canada, Innovite is the company that has an excellent ubiquinol product and is found on our Living Science website here

Compared to standard CoQ10 supplements, ubiquinol is absorbed in the bloodstream up to 8 times better; it reduces exercise-induced fatigue by 90% more and slows aging 40% better. In experimental studies ubiquinol also shown to achieve 3.75 times higher plasma concentrations after 8 hours than standard CoQ10.

Figure 1 shows how little ubiquinol is needed to provide the same blood plasma levels of CoQ10 that are achieved in response to far greater amounts of ubiquinone.

Who should consider taking Ubiquinol?

Supplementing with ubiquinol rather than standard CoQ10 (ubiquinone) is especially important for individials who may have difficulty with the natural conversion of CoQ10 to ubiquinol such as:

  • The late middle-aged to elderly
  • Individuals suffering from specific conditions especially related to oxidative stress including diabetics, those with liver disease and with heart disease.

How much Inno-Q-Nol (ubiquinol) should you take?

The recommended dose of Inno-Q-Nol varies based on each individual's needs and the specific condition treated. However, those who are older may want to start supplementing with 100-200 mg of Inno-Q-Nol per day. 50-100 mg per day is a good maintenance dose for others.

 

Ubiquinol Benefits

As the reduced and more absorbable form of Coenzyme Q10, ubiquinol will have all of the same powerful benefits associated with CoQ10 that have been well established over the past three decades such as increase energy production, stamina leading to a better level of health. Some areas of research where benefits have been observed include:

 

Heart failure

People with heart failure have been found to have lower levels of CoQ10 in their heart muscle cells.

Double-blind research suggests that CoQ10 may reduce symptoms related to heart failure, such as shortness of breath, difficulty sleeping, and swelling. CoQ10 is thought to increase energy production in the heart muscle, increasing the strength of the pumping action. In one study, 641 people with congestive heart failure were randomized to receive either CoQ10 (2 mg per kg body weight) or a placebo plus standard treatment. People who took the CoQ10 had a significant reduction in symptom severity and fewer hospitalizations.

One of the most remarkable studies on CoQ10 involved the significant improvement of individuals expected to die of heart failure. When these patients were supplemented with CoQ10, this miracle nutrient astounded physicians by improving blood pumping capabilities and reducing heart size, surpassing researcher's expectations. Since this study many more clinical trials have been conducted to unveil CoQ10's immense value in treating heart patients.

 

High Cholesterol Treatment

Levels of CoQ10 tend to be lower in people with high cholesterol compared to healthy individuals of the same age. In addition, certain cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins (such as atorvastatin, cerivastatin, lovastatin, pravastatin, simvastatin) appear to deplete natural levels of CoQ10 in the body. Taking CoQ10 supplements can correct the deficiency caused by statin medications without affecting the medication's positive effects on cholesterol levels. Plus, studies show that CoQ10 supplementation may decrease the muscle pain associated with statin treatment. CoQ10 and Statins

-Statin drugs, or HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, are a class of drugs used to lower cholesterol. Research suggests that statin drugs interfere with the body's production of CoQ10. A Columbia University study in New York found that 30 days of statin therapy (80 mg/day) decreased Co q10 levels by half.

Note: If statin drugs strip your body of CoQ10, you can imagine what is happening to your heart. Some health professionals are blaming statin drugs for accelerating heart failure in patients with congenital heart disease. Talk to your doctor about CoQ10 supplementation if you are taking statins.

Probiotics: Your best travel companion

15 August, 2013

Probiotics are beneficial microbes that take up residence in your digestive system, where they ward off colonization of harmful pathogens. Probiotic microorganisms are present in the bacterial cultures that are used to create fermented milk products such as yogurt. These microbes can be consumed live, and they remain live in your intestines, thus bolstering your natural gastrointestinal flora with friendly bacteria.

How can they help in travel?

Gastrointestinal distress can be attributed to a number of factors while on holiday, such as jet lag, stress and contaminated food and water. Probiotics can be a safe and effective solution in dealing with gastrointestinal issues which may arise during travel.

The idea behind taking probiotics as a traveler is to populate your gut with beneficial bacteria so that when your body inevitably faces the foreign bacteria of a strange land and a strange cuisine, it is prepared. It is like pre-arming your GI tract, setting up your defenses in advance so that your body can handle a bacterial attack.

The effectiveness of probiotics in treating travellers’ diarrhea has received much scientific scrutiny. Travellers' diarrhea (TD) is a condition characterised by a marked increase in the frequency of unformed bowel movements and is commonly accompanied by abdominal cramps, urgency, nausea, bloating, vomiting, fever, and malaise.  According to "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition," probiotics have shown promise as a treatment for treating and preventing viral and bacterial diarrheal disorders, reducing the effects of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and the risk of traveler's diarrhea by as much as 50 percent.

Different strains of probiotic microorganisms have different effects; the probiotic yeast Saccharomyces boulardii is significantly effective in preventing traveler's diarrhea. A mixture of different probiotic bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Lactobacillus casei, and Bifidobacterium infantis are also very effective at preventing and treating traveller’s diarrhea.

We recommend Dr. Ohhira's Probiotics which is a truly unique probiotic for these reasons:

1) contains 12 synergistic strains of probiotics
2) blister-packed probiotics do not need refrigeration making them efficient for travel
3) Scientific Support: Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics® is backed by over 20 university-based scientific studies.

Whey Protein – Great Health Benefits!

15 August, 2013

What is whey protein?

Whey Protein is a collective term referring to a group of proteins found in milk. Some of these proteins are:  Alpha-lactalbumin, Beta-lactoglobulin, Glycomacropeptide, Bovine Serum Albumin and Lactoferrin. In cow dairy whey makes up 20% of the protein while casein accounts for 80%. Whey is the by-product of cheese-making and the liquid whey is separated from the solid curd. The moisture is removed leaving the basic powder and this very raw, cheesy-tasting product can be purchased as bulk whey powder. Since this basic form is low in protein and contains lactose and some milk fats, a newer technology is used to produce a higher protein containing powder. Cross Flow Microfiltration (CFM) in a non-chemical process which removes the carbohydrates (lactose), milk fats and other dairy residues through ceramic-coated microfilters. This yields a protein that is intact and undenatured.

For those who are intolerant to milk it is typically the casein fraction that is causing the problem.  Many are lactose intolerant and the good news is that whey protein isolate contains little or no lactose while the whey concentrate version is less pure containing 4-8% lactose. Whey is a complete protein containing all of the essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein) your body needs and is easy to digest.

What are the benefits of whey protein?

Many people can benefit from adding whey protein to their diet. Healthy, active adults who partake in resistance exercise may find that whey protein helps to improve body composition by helping to increase the rate at which the body makes lean muscle.

Whey protein may also help those trying to manage body weight because it is a natural and convenient way of adding protein to the diet. Diets high in protein have been shown to help people feel fuller longer, which may reduce the desire to snack or over-eat, leading to a more stable blood sugar regulation and metabolism. Higher protein (not excess though) diets have also been shown to improve the quality of weight loss by increasing the loss of body fat and/or reducing the loss of lean muscle. Furthermore, starting at about the age of forty there is a tendency for muscle mass  to begin to decline and in addition to resistance exercise, including whey protein on a daily basis can be an easy and healthy way to help minimize this loss.

It is common when people hear about the benefits of whey to relate it to building/preserving muscle mass but it is important to recognize its importance to immune system health. As stated above whey is the name of a collective of protein fractions. Here is some of what these fractions do for you:

  • Immunoglobulins – yield important antibodies, which directly benefit the immune system.
  • Glycomacropeptides – contain sialic acid, a potent antiviral substance.
  • Bovine Serum Albumin – is a very important precursor to glutathione which is the king of antioxidants and  necessary for cellular detoxification.

Where do you find whey protein?

Whey protein isolate can be found in powders, drink mixes and energy bars. Products with whey protein as a major source of protein will list “whey protein isolate,” or “whey protein concentrate” near the beginning of the ingredients list. Whey protein powder is very convenient and can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, homemade protein bars and pancakes to name a few.  After exercise it is important to consume some easy to digest protein within 30 minutes of completing the workout. Whey protein powder mixed with some juice or water is a great way to allow your muscles to recover. The ideal formula is 1 part protein to 2-3 parts carbohydrate and you will see some pre-mixed formulas that you just add water, shake and drink. Adding some whey protein isolate to a balanced diet is a great way to help you achieve your health goals.

We recommend Nutrients for Performance Berry Whey or Vanilla Whey Protein Isolate. Nutrients for Performance has designed this product to help active individuals of all levels reach their health goals naturally.