Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Flu Fighters—in Your Food

New Research Points to Ways to Boost Immunity by Making Sure Your Diet Has the Right Nutrients

Click on this link to see key ingredients in your food.

Source: Amraj Shanker, Harvard School of Public Health as reported in the Wall Street Journal

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Supplement myths

Myth #1: I get all the vitamins I need from my food.

Research has shown that many people simply may not follow the recommended guidelines for healthy eating. Fast-food and convenience-food consumption, snacking, and soft-drink use have all increased, and it has been shown that many people may not meet even the basic RDAs for key nutrients.

Source: The National Diet & Nutrition Survey: adults aged 19 to 64 years, Ruston et al, HMSO, 2004

Myth #2: All vitamin/mineral supplements are the same.

A study published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences investigated the disintegrating properties of a variety of vitamin and mineral tablets and capsules commercially available on the Canadian market, including USANA’s Multimineral Plus. Researchers found that more than half of the nutritional supplements tested did not disintegrate properly. Products that did not disintegrate were further analyzed using USP disintegration conditions for dietary supplements. Of the 39 tablets tested, only 18 products, including USANA’s Multimineral Plus, disintegrated fully at the first stage.

Source: Investigation of vitamin and mineral tablets and capsules on the Canadian Market. J Pharm Pharmaceut Sci ( 9(1):40-49, 2006.

Source: USANA newspaper

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Multivitamins may lower heart disease death risk

A team of researchers from the University of Washington report that daily use of multivitamins over a 10-year period may reduce the risk of death from heart disease by 16%.

Researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center at the University of Washington recently analyzed the use of multivitamin supplements, vitamin C, and vitamin E over a ten year period. Correlations between 5-year total mortality and death from cancer or cardiovascular disease (CVD) were assessed.

Data from 77,719 Washington residents aged 50 to 76 were obtained by questionnaire. A series of analyses showed that use of multivitamins was associated with a 16% lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease (95% CI: 0.01-0.3). Intakes of vitamin E over 215 milligrams per day over the course of ten years were also associated with a 28% reduction in the risk of death from CVD (95% CI: 0.12-0.31).

Multivitamin use alone was not associated with a decreased risk of total mortality, but both vitamin C and E were associated with decreases in risk of total mortality. Similarly, vitamin C did not correlate with a reduced risk of death from CVD while both multivitamins and vitamin E did.

A simple and safe way to beat swine flu

With H1N1 (swine flu) infections on the rise along with growing concerns about the safety of the new vaccine, scientists have discovered a simple and safe way we can protect ourselves from the worst effects of the virus.

A diet that’s rich in antioxidants – vitamins A, C and E – can ward off the most damaging symptoms of swine flu, and of any flu, researchers have discovered this week. The antioxidants protect the lungs from the M2 protein that’s found in every flu virus. The protein stops the lungs from clearing out liquid, and it paves the way for pneumonia and other lung problems.

In laboratory tests, researchers from Alabama have found that antioxidants counteract the M2 protein.

You can increase your levels of antioxidants either by taking supplements, or by eating more green leafy vegetables, broccoli, carrots, oranges, sweet potatoes, and nuts and seeds. Even red wine contains antioxidants.

Source: FASEB Journal, 2009; 23: 3829-42

Source: WDDTY

Should we be taking nutritional supplements?

Source: Dr Gerald Lewis MB ChB, FRCP. FRACP, MD, Cardiologist and a General Physician