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Curcumin Effectively Reduces Pain in Osteoarthritis Patients

© 9th January 2020 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/curcumin-effectively-reduces-pain-osteoarthritis-patients

Posted on:  Thursday, January 9th 2020 at 11:30 am

Curcumin has proven anti-inflammatory effects, and new research confirms that curcumin supplementation is an effective tool for pain management in patients with knee osteoarthritis

Research from the City Care Accident Hospital in Parli Vaijnath, Maharashtra, India, indicates that curcumin, a polyphenolic curcuminoid found in turmeric, is a safe and effective treatment for knee osteoarthritis.[i] Specifically, researchers determined that curcumin was equally effective as, but better tolerated than, diclofenac, a popular non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) often used to treat knee osteoarthritis.

Current Treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis

Knee osteoarthritis (OA) is a degeneration of joint cartilage that affects the bones, cartilage and thin synovium membrane surrounding the knee joint, characterized by stiffness, pain and immobility.

Knee osteoarthritis is the fourth leading cause of disability worldwide, and is especially prevalent in older adults and those who are obese.[ii] The prevalent nature of the disease makes researchers eager to find pain management therapies that are safe and effective.

Current conventional pain management recommendations for knee OA include the NSAID diclofenac. Diclofenac is often used to treat mild to moderate pain associated with arthritis and osteoarthritis but offers only temporary pain relief.

Additionally, diclofenac is an ineffective and unsafe long-term treatment for chronic pain associated with knee OA, as continual use of diclofenac can cause gastrointestinal bleeding, gastrointestinal ulcer formation, and increase cardiovascular risk.[iii] [iv]

For this reason, researchers are eager to find a natural, effective treatment for knee OA that doesn’t present such serious health implications. Curcumin, long studied for its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects, is a logical substitute. Questions about the efficacy of curcumin included its lack of bioavailability and gastrointestinal effects compared to NSAIDS like diclofenac.

This is not the first study to test the efficacy of curcuminoids compared to standard pain medication. GreenMedinfo has compiled over 2,500 abstracts on the use of curcumin, including for pain relief. Previously, we’ve also researched the dangers of medications for pain management of arthritis and the viability of turmeric as an anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing supplement.

Study Results: Curcumin for Safer and More Effective Pain Management

To test the efficacy of curcumin as a pain prevention method, patients were evaluated every two weeks for improvement in pain intensity using a visual analog scale (VAS), a standardized and clinically validated test for measuring acute and chronic pain.[v] Patients in the first group were given 500-milligram (mg) doses of curcumin three times daily, while the second group was given 50 mg of diclofenac twice daily.

At the end of the study, both treatment groups showed improvement in VAS pain scores, but patients receiving curcumin experienced fewer gastrointestinal effects and other benefits compared to those receiving diclofenac — specifically, patients experienced less flatulence, an anti-ulcer effect and greater weight loss while taking curcumin.

Those receiving curcumin needed no H2 blockers during the study, while diclofenac patients did. H2 blockers are a type of medication that works to reduce stomach acid and prevent the formation of gastric ulcers. This is of significance because it indicates the anti-ulcer effects of curcumin.

Because NSAIDS, including diclofenac, are known to have gastrointestinal side effects such as intestinal bleeding, ulcers and flatulence, curcumin is a favorable alternative to commonly prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs.[vi] [vii]

Curcumin’s ability to support weight loss may also present an additional benefit to knee OA patients. Obesity is a concern among knee OA patients and causes excess strain on joints, but it can be difficult for OA patients to lose weight when pain restricts their mobility or ability to exercise.

This vicious cycle could be alleviated by curcumin supplementation, which could help reduce weight while improving pain and allowing patients greater movement.

Overall, researchers determined that curcumin supplementation has a similar effect on pain relief in patients with knee OA as does diclofenac, with curcumin presenting additional benefits that could further its efficacy.

Curcumin With Increased Bioavailability Is Important

One challenge surrounding the use of curcumin is its poor bioavailability (absorption rate), but this can be increased via a number of mechanisms.

In this study, researchers used capsules that contained curcumin and essential oil of turmeric, which increased bioavailability. Using only the most bioavailable forms of curcumin is an important step in its viability as a pain management treatment. Researchers concluded:

“Our findings suggest that curcumin three times daily has similar efficacy to but a better safety profile than diclofenac two times daily among patients with knee OA. Our study results suggest that curcumin with increased bioavailability (BCM-95) can be a good alternative treatment option in patients with knee OA who are intolerant to the side effects of NSAIDS.”[viii]

To learn more about the potential positive effects curcumin can have on your health, visit the GreenMedInfo database on the subject.


References

[i] Trials volume 20, Article number: 214 (2019)

[ii] Trials volume 20, Article number: 214 (2019)

[iii] BMJ. 2018; 362: k3426.

[iv] National Center for Biotechnology Information. PubChem Database. DICLOFENAC

[v] J Am Acad Orthop Surg Glob Res Rev. 2018 Mar; 2(3): e088.

[vi] J Orthop Sci. 2014; 19(6): 933–939.

[vii] J Med Food. 2016 Aug 1; 19(8): 717–729.

[viii] Trials volume 20, Article number: 214 (2019)

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Canned soup: “Comfort foods” that threaten your health

Reproduced from original article:
www.naturalhealth365store.com/canned-soup-dangerous-health

Posted by Jonathan Landsman 25th January 2020

It looks like such a healthy idea . . . a can of tomato or chicken noodle soup. Plus, there are all those associations we have with being fed a steaming bowl of soup on a TV tray while we lie in bed recovering from a horrible cold.

But, that may not be always so true.

Now, first let me say there is good news. Some organic brands of canned soup like Amy’s Organics are absolutely delicious and are way less toxic than more commercial brands.  Imagine Food’s organic soups are also on the list of safe soups to consume, as well as other organic brands like Wolfgang Puck’s.

Of course, if you really want the “best” kind of soup … nothing beats homemade from scratch.  Having said that, I’ll give you a list of healthy canned soups that are delicious, nutritious, and safe at the end of this article.

But, first, what’s so bad about canned soup?

BPA is an endocrine disruptor that can cause hormone-based cancers

Study after study has confirmed that canned soup is loaded with bisphenol-A or BPA, for short. BPA is an endocrine disruptor that throws our hormones completely out of balance and can cause estrogen dominance, which can lead to the development of breast cancer, uterine and endometrial cancer, and prostate cancer.

BPA is also terrible for bone health

BPA blocks calcium channels, preventing calcium from making it into the bone, where you need it to give your bones strength and resilience to breakage. A recent article published in the International Journal of Medical Science found that BPA blocks calcium absorption at a cellular level.

Canned soup contains too much sodium, making it a threat to kidney health

Just one can of soup can contain as much as one third of your RDA for sodium! Light soups often have even more sodium added in the manufacturer’s efforts to give the soup more flavor.

Individuals with insulin resistance, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease who are trying to avoid sodium definitely want to avoid canned soup for this reason. Persons trying to stay in good health should steer clear of soups containing too much sodium as well.

Canned soup is loaded with MSG – a major cause of diabetes and insulin resistance

Scientists have now linked MSG with insulin resistance, obesity, and possibly type 2 diabetes. In fact, in China today, diabetes is becoming an epidemic, and scientists believe additives like MSG and adopting a chiefly Western diet full of fast food and processed foods could be largely to blame.

Safe brands of canned soup include:

  • Amy’s Organic Soups
  • Wolfgang Puck’s Organic Soup
  • Imagine Food’s Organic Soups
  • Pacific Food’s Organic and Organic Bone Broth Soups

Editor’s note: The NaturalHealth365 Store offers the finest quality (immune-supportive) supplements on the market.  Click here to shop today.

Sources for this article include:

NIH.gov

Saveourbones.com

Beyond Curcumin: Why Turmeric Is Not the Same as Curcumin

© 28th January 2020 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
https://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/beyond-curcumin-why-turmeric-not-same-curcumin

Posted on:  Tuesday, January 28th 2020 at 10:30 am

When hearing about turmeric, curcumin gets all the glory, but this ancient healing root contains other impressive compounds too, like turmerosaccharides. If you haven’t heard of them before, here’s why you should

Turmeric is a hot topic here at GreenMedInfo.com. For example, you can read about how Science Confirms Turmeric As Effective As 14 Drugs600 Reasons Turmeric May Be the World’s Most Important Herb and even How WHOLE Turmeric Heals the Damaged Brain.

Yet, here’s what most people — even health and nutrition enthusiasts — often don’t realize. Despite the two often being referred to interchangeably, turmeric is actually far different than the popular supplement ingredient curcumin.

Sure, curcumin is derived from turmeric, but when it comes to their uses, benefits and bioavailability, the differences between turmeric and curcumin are quite significant, and in this article you’ll discover exactly why, and why you may want to think beyond curcumin when it comes to using turmeric in your diet.

Turmeric Versus Curcumin

Turmeric is just a root, and technically the root of Curcuma longa, which is a flowering plant of the ginger family. It contains many bioactive plant substances, but one particular group, the curcuminoids, are often touted as possessing the biggest health-promoting bang-for-your-buck. These curcuminoids include demethoxycurcumin, bisdemethoxycurcumin and — you guessed it — curcumin.

But curcumin is only present at about 2% to 8% concentration in the average turmeric preparation.[i] Curcumin is well-known for its anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic and antioxidant effects, but if curcumin is all that you’re relying on for the benefits of curcumin, you’re technically missing out on 92% to 98% of the other plant bioactive compounds in the whole turmeric root.

Don’t feel bad about being on the curcumin bandwagon. After all, curcumin is the most studied curcuminoid and is also the most abundant curcuminoid found in turmeric.

The Problem With Curcumin

But there’s a problem. Despite its wide array of potential benefits, the actual bioavailability of curcumin in humans and animals is quite low. Curcumin also has a high rate of metabolization and rapid systemic clearance.

So getting enough curcumin into your system to reach blood levels sufficient to exert the benefits shown in research requires consuming around 3 to 5 teaspoons of turmeric powder a day. And that’s a lot of turmeric, along with posing a high risk of having a constantly yellowish-orange stained mouth.

Even then, curcumin is so poorly absorbed that it often needs to be combined with something that can increase its bioavailability. One quite popular example of this is an extract found in black pepper. On many supplement labels, you’ll see listed a patented extract obtained from black pepper fruits called BioPerine, which is commonly used as a curcumin bioavailability enhancer.

Another strategy to increase the bioavailability of curcumin is via the use of phytosomes, which are plant extracts that are bound to phosphatidylcholine. Once attached to phosphatidylcholine, there is much higher absorption of curcumin (up to 30 times more bioavailability).

Finally, we get to the biggest problem with curcumin: if you’re relying on it as your only source to obtain the benefits of turmeric, then you’re missing out on other components of this impressive root.

Beyond Curcumin

I don’t quite understand why we seem to myopically focus on curcumin in the health, nutrition and supplement industry.

After all, the entire turmeric rhizome has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for over 4,000 years, and during most of this time there was no fancy technology such as a patented Bioperine extract or phosphatidylcholine molecules in supplement form to increase bioavailability of the curcumin, nor was there technology to extract appreciable amounts of curcumin from the turmeric.

Instead, turmeric’s long history of culinary, medicinal and cosmetic use in India includes water-based preparations for internal use (known as Kashaya), fat-based (oil, ghee) preparations for internal use (known as Sneha), and powder preparation for internal use (known as Churna). Consider this anecdote from the book “Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects”:

“The use of turmeric dates back nearly 4000 years to the Vedic culture in India, where it was used as a culinary spice and had some religious significance. It probably reached China by 700 ad, East Africa by 800 ad, West Africa by 1200 ad, and Jamaica in the eighteenth century. In 1280, Marco Polo described this spice, marveling at a vegetable that exhibited qualities so similar to that of saffron.

According to Sanskrit medical treatises and Ayurvedic and Unani systems, turmeric has a long history of medicinal use in South Asia. Susruta’s Ayurvedic Compendium, dating back to 250 bc, recommends an ointment containing turmeric to relieve the effects of poisoned food.”

You can read more about turmeric’s journey from traditional to modern medicine in “Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects”.[ii]

If these ancient healers have been harnessing the power of turmeric via fresh juice, teas, tinctures and powders, as well as using it topically in the form of creams, lotions, pastes and ointments, then why has most of the research up until very recently been centered around the curcuminoids — which, as mentioned, are a fraction of 2% to 8% of the plant?

These traditional healing and food practices related to the use of turmeric indicate that it’s not just the curcuminoid component of turmeric that is likely to possess physiological benefits. Enter turmerosaccharides.

Turmerosaccharides are water-soluble bioactive polysaccharides extracted from that remaining 90+% percent of the turmeric root. The fact that turmerosaccharides are water-soluble means that all of the good stuff is more easily absorbed into the tissues of your body and metabolized more quickly than the curcumin-based fat-soluble components of turmeric.

How Turmerosaccharides Work

The first property of turmerosaccharides that makes them more desirable is the fact that they are naturally water-soluble. Through a steam extraction process, turmerosaccharides are isolated from the turmeric oil, without the need for using any harsh solvents. This means the bioavailability of turmerosaccharides is significantly higher than that of curcumin.

In addition, the effects of tumerosaccharides on your body are astounding, especially if you’re active or suffer from soreness from overexertion. A 2013 study found that turmerosaccharides reduced joint tenderness, crepitation, swelling and effusion related to overuse, while increasing joint function and flexibility.[iii] Patients with primary knee osteoarthritis received either turmerosaccharides, glucosamine sulfate, a combination of turmerosaccharides and glucosamine sulfate, or a placebo for 42 days. The efficacy of the different treatments was assessed during the treatment period, on both day 21 and day 42 of the study.

The analysis of post-treatment scores following the administration of turmerosaccharides at each clinical visit showed a significant decrease in joint issues compared to the placebo. The turmerosaccharides-treated group also showed a significant decrease in the use of their standard medication, along with clinical and subjective improvement compared to placebo.

Another study investigated turmerosaccharides’ effect on human knee cartilage and found that it protects cartilage homeostasis,[iv] which means that it balances out the natural rate of synthesis and degradation, keeping joints happily balanced. Interleukin 1 beta (a natural protein involved with inflammation) and hydrogen peroxide (which is generally toxic to cells) are both bad news bears for chondrocytes, which are your cartilage-producing cells.

This study looked at the effects of turmerosaccharides by exposing these chondrocytes to these toxins with and without turmerosaccharides, then measuring markers indicating cell degradation, aging and death, as well as cartilage creation, degradation and general inflammation.

The presence of turmerosaccharides decreased cartilage cell destruction and general inflammation in the knee cartilage cells, and also protected compounds that improve cartilage creation, such as glycosaminoglycans and type II collagen.

In other studies, turmerosaccharides were shown to significantly reduce acute and chronic inflammation and support a balanced inflammatory response[v] as well as increase gene expression of type II collagen.[vi]

Where Can You Find Turmerosaccharides?

So by now, you’re probably wondering where you can actually get turmerosaccharides. One easy option would be to find high-quality turmeric root grown in clean soil, and then boil it in water, preferably via a decoction method, which involves a long simmering process in hot water, and can work quite well for a variety of hard, woody herbs and spices, such as roots, bark and stems.

Another option is to look for nutritional supplements that contain Turmacin® — which is a water-soluble extract of turmeric that contains high amounts of turmerosaccharides. And there’s absolutely no reason that you can’t co-consume turmerosaccharides along with curcumin to get even more benefits out of the wonderful turmeric root.

For more on turmeric, curcumin and other ancestral and modern scientific ways to enhance recovery and decrease inflammation, you can read Chapter 14 of my new book “Boundless”, which tackles more on healing the body more quickly from injuries, inflammation and hard workouts.


References

[i] Biofactors. 2013 Jan-Feb;39(1):78-87. doi: 10.1002/biof.1074. Epub 2013 Jan 22.

[ii] Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd edition. Chapter 13, Turmeric, the Golden Spice

[iii] Inflammopharmacology. 2013 Apr;21(2):129-36. doi: 10.1007/s10787-012-0163-3. Epub 2012 Dec 16.

[iv] Inflammopharmacology. 2018 Oct;26(5):1233-1243. doi: 10.1007/s10787-017-0433-1. Epub 2018 Jan 8.

[v] Antiinflamm Antiallergy Agents Med Chem. 2015;14(1):53-62.

[vi] Inflammopharmacology. 2018 Oct;26(5):1233-1243. doi: 10.1007/s10787-017-0433-1. Epub 2018 Jan 8.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

76 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Noni

© 3rd January 2020 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
https://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/76-evidence-based-health-benefits-noni
Posted on: Friday, January 3rd 2020 at 4:15 pm

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Vitamin D3

Written by Brenton Wight – LeanMachine, Health Researcher.
Copyright © 1999-2020 Brenton Wight and Lean Machine

Health Facts on Vitamin D3 – the Natural Cure for all disease!

Updated 6th April 2020

Why we need Vitamin D3
First, to help absorb calcium and other minerals to build strong bones with the help of Vitamin K2 that keeps calcium in bones instead of in blood where calcium plaques form.
Second, to build the immune system, in conjunction with gut bacteria – the other half of the immune system story.
Depending on which study we believe, optimal vitamin D3 can prevent between 50% and 90% of all cancers, as well as Multiple Sclerosis, and reduce the intensity or even cure almost every other disease.
If a drug company developed something that would do this, it would make headlines around the world and win a Nobel prize, and many billions of dollars would be saved in the health care budgets of countries everywhere.
If the entire population had optimal Vitamin D3 combined with a healthy diet, countless lives would be saved from cancer, many illnesses would disappear, most artificial replacements of hips and knees would not be required, thousands of people clogging up the nursing homes in their wheelchairs would be out playing tennis and leading active, productive lives.
Have I convinced you yet that just a few dollars for a year’s supply of super-strength 5000 IU Vitamin D3 would be a good investment in your future?
If not, then perhaps you should go and reserve that spot in the nursing home, and pick out the burial plot while you’re at it!

Benefits of Vitamin D3

Studies show that Vitamin D3 has cancer inhibiting properties, especially breast, prostate, pancreas, colon, skin cancer and leukaemia.
While millions are spent trying to find a cure for cancer, Vitamin D3 could be used to prevent cancer in the first place, at a cost equivalent to a drop in the ocean.
Vitamin D3 deficiencies can cause the following:
Colds and flu:
Vitamin D3 helps prevent or reduce severity of colds, flu, and almost every other infection. LeanMachine is living proof. After 10 years of taking Vitamin D3, no colds, no flu, no infections of any kind, not even a headache!
When we look at studies funded by drug companies who manufacture vaccinations, which are always biased in favour of the flu shot, the NNT (Number Needed to Treat) for the flu vaccine is 40, meaning that to protect one person from getting the flu, 40 people must receive the vaccination. Compare this with Vitamin D3, where the NNT is 33 in the average population, and in those people with D3 deficiency, the NNT drops to 4. In other words, for the average person, D3 is significantly better than the flu shot, and for those with low Vitamin D3, D3 supplements work 10 time better than the flu shot!
Most infections are naturally destroyed by our own immune system, mainly the T-cells, but T-cells need Vitamin D3 to operate correctly.
Studies funded privately, without the influence of the drug companies, have foud the flu shot to be even less effective, with those over the age of 65, or under the age of 2, or those on statin medications, all receiving NO statistically discernible benefit from the flu shot, and everyone else receiving a very marginal benefit such as a reduction in duration of illness of about 1 day.
On the downside, those taking the flu shot every year received less benefit (less protection), and actually INCREASED risk of coming down with a different strain of the flu!
More on vaccinations under the heading below.
OA (Osteoarthritis)
Osteoarthritis (OA)is the most common disease in people over age 50, more common than the common cold, and especially in women.
OA is directly linked to Vitamin D3 deficiency, and higher Vitamin D3 levels lower the risk.
Studies show that hip fractures in high risk population groups can be reduced by up to 40% by supplementing with Vitamin D3.
Partly because bones are stronger, and partly because people with good Vitamin D3 levels have much better balance and stronger muscles, so don’t fall over as much.

RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and MS (Multiple Sclerosis) appear to have the same link.

Obesity
Most Australians (two thirds) and others in Western society are overweight or obese.
Two thirds of people in Western society are also deficient in Vitamin D3, and this is no coincidence. There is a direct link between Vitamin D3 deficiency and obesity.
On average, the more Vitamin D3 deficient a person is, the more obese they are.
Healthy levels of Vitamin D3 are seen mainly in lean, healthy people.

Chronic pain
Chronic pain from any source can be reduced with Vitamin D3, even a simple headache, migraine, back pain, fibromyalgia, etc.
Many people with osteoporosis have chronic pain, typically lower back pain, often a sign of D3 deficiency.
Those people usually exercise less because of the pain, and insufficient exercise causes depression, worsens their osteoporosis, increases obesity, and their condition only gets worse.

Before 2010, LeanMachine suffered from headaches back pain and other pain, but no more. If I hit my thumb with a hammer, of course it hurts, and if I strain my back or another muscle, I feel stiffness that goes away in a day or two. But no other pain, no painkillers required, and in fact no painkillers of any kind kept in the house.

Cancer
Cancer is a devastating condition, but high levels of Vitamin D3 offer up to 80% or more protection, especially childhood cancers, breast, prostate, pancreas, skin and colon cancer.
A recent study confirmed that women with high levels of Vitamin D3 had about 85% reduced risk of breast cancer compared to those with the lowest levels of Vitamin D3.
Vitamin D3 is critical to the body’s production of GcMAF, a cancer-fighting protein that inhibits cancer metastasis, and is capable of reversing the devastating effects of cancer on the body. Vitamin D3 supports GcMAF synthesis, helping to shut down pro-cancer receptors and enzymes that encourage metastasis.
DBP-maf(Vitamin D3 binding protein-macrophage activating factor) is another protein reducing cancerous activity, which directly stimulates the immune response by suppressing angiogenesis (blood vessel growth) required for cancer cell migration and tumor growth. DBP-maf requires Vitamin D3 for transport in the bloodstream.

Depression
There are links between low levels of Vitamin D3 and depression.
For depression sufferers, LeanMachine recommends extra Vitamin D3 from sunlight because getting outside in the sun always lifts our mood. If we cannot get out in the sun, supplementation is a must.

Hearing Loss
Vitamin D3 deficiency weakens our bones, but when the three tiny bones (hammer, anvil and stirrup) in the ear become weak and spongy, attenuation of sound transmission results in hearing loss.

Allergies
Recent studies show that children with allergies have a high chance of being deficient in Vitamin D3, and those with the worst allergies, are over 80% likely to be deficient in vitamin D3.

Heart disease
The number one killer of Western society people is still cardiac disease.
Vitamin D3 deficiencies bring on high blood pressure, stroke and heart attack.
Number two is cancer, so we can alleviate both killers easily by eating a healthy diet and getting enough Vitamin D3 from sunlight and/or supplements.

Type 1 diabetes

Pregnant women who are deficient in Vitamin D3 are far more likely to produce offspring with Type 1 diabetes.
Any child deprived of sunlight in the first few years of life also has a far higher risk of type 1 Diabetes.

How do we get Vitamin D3 ?

We get Vitamin D3 from the sun, but we need the basic building-blocks in the body first.
The normal process of Vitamin D3 metabolism can be stopped by the deficiency of one single nutrient, so a healthy, nutrient-rich diet is essential.
In particular, we need cholesterol, which has been demonised for decades. More on this later.

Vitamin K2 – No Bones without it

Some people say we need Calcium for strong bones, but we get plenty of calcium from the diet, and we can absorb calcium with no problems as long as we have enough Vitamin D3.
No vitamin D3 means no calcium absorption, so adding more calcium to the diet without vitamin D3 means potential for calcium to form as plaque in our arteries, kidneys or other places where it will only damage the body.
Vitamin K2, which comes from animal products such as chicken, cheese, butter, eggs, etc, can help build bones by directing calcium to bones and teeth where it belongs, and helps keep our arteries, kidneys and other organs free from calcium.
The only vegetable source of Vitamin K2 is Natto (fermented soy), which explains why Japanese post-menopausal women have much stronger bones than Western women, as Natto is part of the traditional Japanese diet.
Vitamin K2 is not to be confused with Vitamin K (or K1), which is required for effective blood clotting, but not as effective as Vitamin K2 for bones, but still desirable in the diet.
K1 comes from intestinal bacteria as well as from green leafy vegetables like kale, spring onions, brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, basil, asparagus, also prunes.
For vegetarians or vegans, supplementation of Vitamin K2 is essential as well as D3 for healthy bones. Vitamin D3 metabolism is complex, where each essential and critical nutrient provides the path to the next step, and one missing link in the chain will stop the entire process.
So it is no surprise that a third of our population is deficient in Vitamin D3, and around 90% are less than optimal. Unfortunately, these are the people who are at the highest risk of cancer.

Importance of Diet

Vitamin D3 cannot form without basic nutrients for the multi-stage process and this explains why so many people are deficient.

D3 – A Vitamin or a Hormone?

The answer is both.
It is a hormone (a chemical messenger) because it controls cells, organs, muscle and bone in everyday function, and because the body can manufacture it with sunlight exposure on skin.
It is a vitamin because it binds calcium so we can absorb it, as we humans cannot digest calcium without Vitamin D3, which maintains calcium and phosphate concentrations in the blood, providing minerals for bones, nerves, muscles, immune function, and lowers inflammation.
Many cell functions are controlled in part by vitamin D3, aiding in weight loss, blood glucose regulation, metabolism, and essential fatty acids (Omega-3) processing.
There is no point taking calcium or omega-3 foods or supplements without a good supply of Vitamin D3.
Almost every cell in the body has Vitamin D3 receptors, so Vitamin D3 is a crucial nutrient.
Vitamin D, D2 or D3?
The terms Vitamin D and vitamin D3 are used interchangeably here. D3 is the correct and natural Vitamin D.
D3 exists in the body as the storage form 25(OH) and the active form 1,25 2(OH). Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) is an artificial version of Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), or vitamin D coming from some foods.
D2 has very low affinity for DBP (vitamin D binding protein) so it cannot be easily stored and should never be used.
Firstly, D2 has nowhere near the healthy properties of D3 (cholecalciferol), and secondly, D2 tends to block absorption of the real D3.
Many foods come “fortified with vitamin D” but this is invariably an artificial D2 with poor benefits.
Some early medical studies on vitamin D used inferior synthetic D2 which is toxic at much lower doses, and unfairly discredited the real D3 which was not even being used in the studies.

How is Vitamin D3 made?

We get vitamin D3 from sunlight, food or supplements.
D3 from sunlight
Most people know we get Vitamin D3 from sunlight, but there is a multi-stage process involved.
Production starts in the liver, which makes 7-dehydrocholesterol, which then migrates to the skin to be altered by UVB (ultra-violet light in the B range) to become pre-vitamin D3.
This is carried back to the liver to be mediated by an enzyme (25-hydroxylase) to become 25-hydroxyvitamin D, where a hydroxy (OH) molecule is added to build the storage form 25(OH).
This is then transported to the kidneys to be mediated by yet another enzyme (1-alpha-hydroxylase) to finally become calcitriol, where a second hydroxy (OH) is added. This is the active form of vitamin D3, also known as cholecalciferol or 1,25 dihydroxyvitaminD3 or the active form 1,25 2(OH). Dihydroxy means that the D3 molecule has two OH molecules added, one from the liver and a second from the kidneys.
Vitamin D3 is carried in the blood by DBP (vitamin D-binding protein).
This entire process takes around 15 days, so if we shower every day, we “wash off” most of the pre-vitamin D, so morning showers are best, allowing the pre-vitamin D to start the migration back to the liver before the next shower.
And a day at the beach won’t help our vitamin D3 if we go for a swim, and worse if we get sunburnt!

Statins rob our Vitamin D3

As we age, we lose the ability to synthesise vitamin D from sunlight, and those on statin medication (half the aged population) cannot make 7-dehydrocholesterol, co-enzyme Q10, Cholesterol Sulfate and other important requirements for the body, because when statins slow the liver production of cholesterol, all of the above are affected.
No one should ever take a statin drug (Lipitor, Crestor, Simvastatin and others) other than exceptional circumstances, as they generally do much more harm than good.
Independent studies show that while some deaths from heart disease are reduced, deaths from ALL OTHER CAUSES is INCREASED by statin medication! Taking statins, we will generally not live one day longer, and will have a poorer quality of life.
Also as we age, we generate less stomach acid, losing the ability to take in B12, Methyl Folate (never Folic Acid!), Vitamin K2 and other nutrients that vitamin D requires to do it’s job. If we get reflux or heartburn, doctors normally prescribe Nexium or antacids, which may relieve symptoms short-term, but only make the problem worse. The best way to cure heartburn is to eat less, and eat an alkaline-forming diet, but that is another story in my Alkaline Diet article.
Those who dress fully covered for cultural reasons or those with dark skin always need more vitamin D.
Annual blood tests for vitamin D3 are advisable if taken at very high doses as excess levels can become toxic.
For adults, toxic levels for vitamin D3 are generally not seen unless we take in some 40,000 IU daily for many weeks.
Vitamin A can also be toxic in high levels, but if A and D are taken together, the toxic levels are some 5 times higher for both A and D, giving a huge margin of safety, so old “toxic levels” should really be called “imbalance levels”.
Another factor is Vitamin K2, discussed later.

Other things that Steal our Vitamin D3

Being overweight – the more overweight we are, the less bioavailable Vitamin D3 becomes. But if we take Vitamin D3 supplements and/or get more sunshine, this will assist our weight-loss efforts!
Being old – as we age, our ability to absorb D3 from sunlight and from food reduces, so supplementation becomes more essential.
BPA (Bisphenol A) – BPA (Bisphenol-A) and other endocrine-disrupting chemicals reduce our Vitamin D3 levels. Avoid foods in plastic or cans and use glass containers.
Liver problems – a poor liver produces less bile, which reduces absorption of Vitamin D3. Look after the liver – avoid excess alcohol and eat a healthy diet of quality fats, few carbohydrates, and low to moderate protein.
Kidney problems – as kidney disease gets worse, so do Vitamin D3 levels. Look after kidneys by drinking plenty of clean water and eating a healthy diet
Gut bacteria – these 100 trillion organisms are a major component of our immune system, and also aid in absorption and processing of minerals and vitamins, including Vitamin D3. People with celiac disease, chronic pancreatitis, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) or Crohn’s disease, or those taking antibiotics, will all have reduced D3, so essential supplements are Vitamin D3 and probiotics.
Slip, Slop, Slap in the face campaign – this disastrous campaign has been running for over 30 years in Australia, costing the taxpayer many millions of dollars, and has caused many more millions in extra health care, more disease, and many more lives lost.
True, reduced sunlight has reduced the number of mostly harmless skin cancers such as basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma which are easily treated, and rarely turn into something more serious (less than 1% of cases).
But the number of MELANOMA cancers – the real, deadly kind, has DOUBLED, but this fact has been hidden by the Australian Cancer Council who are behind the Slip, Slop, Slap campaign! The primary reason, of course, is lack of Vitamin D3 due to reduced sunlight, reducing immunity.
Melanomas also appear on the soles of feet, in armpits and other places where sunlight is very limited, but so-called “specialists” still blame the sun!
The science cannot be denied. The closer one lives to the Equator, the less chance of any type of cancer, a proven fact.

Too much sunlight?

If we get D3 from sunlight, then surely if we spend all day in the sun, like construction workers and other outdoor activities, we should get plenty?
Wrong. After we spend around 10 to 20 minutes in the sun in the middle of the day (90 minutes for dark-skinned people), we reach a point where the body will no longer synthesise any more vitamin D3.
This is the way the body is designed to prevent toxic levels from building up, and also the reason why we get a tan – to prevent too much vitamin D3 from the sun.
If our skin starts to get the slightest shade of pink, it is time to cover up or seek some shade, as more sun will only then cause damage, with no extra vitamin D3 past that point.
And if we get a healthy dose of sunlight one day, we can happily work inside the next day, as it may take 2 days to build new skin resources for more absorption.

The Morning Myth

The cancer society and other “health” organisations all say the we should avoid the sun in the middle of the day, and only go out in the morning or the evening when the sun is low in the sky. Wrong again!
This is actually the complete reverse of the truth!
The sun produces ultra-violet rays in three bandwidths, named UV-A, UV-B and UV-C, each with different properties.
UV-A
We get UV-A from all sunlight, no matter what time of day, and it passes through cloud and glass, and this kind travels deeper into the skin, causes skin damage and ZERO vitamin D production.
We can sit by a window or in a car with windows up, on a hot sunny day and never get any vitamin D.
We can be outside all day when there is cloud cover, but we will never get any vitamin D.
All we get from UV-A is skin damage.
UV-B
We get UV-B ONLY from a clear blue sky, and ONLY when the sun is HIGH in the sky. This is the “good” sunlight, as this is the ONLY kind that gives us vitamin D.
When the sun is lower in the sky, most UV-B is absorbed in the atmosphere leaving little or none for our benefit.
We need 10 minutes a day (fair-skinned) to 20 minutes a day (tanned) with the sun high in the sky, no clouds, and no glass. This can give us all of the vitamin D we need, but for many, this is impossible.
For those living a long way from the equator, or out of the tropic areas in winter, those working shifts or indoors, those who cover their entire bodies for religious reasons, or slap on sunscreen, those who have very dark skin, those on statin medication, those on a poor diet, those confined to hospitals or nursing homes and others who mistakenly believe the sun is evil, will never get enough vitamin D.
Vitamin D is fat-soluble, meaning that if we get plenty one day and miss the sun for a few days, we will still be able to call on our vitamin D reserves stored in fat cells.
Of course, UV-B will still damage our skin if we stay out in the sun too long.
UV-C
UV-C rarely gets to Earth as it is almost completely absorbed in the atmosphere, so is of little concern unless you are an astronaut.

Why we NEED sunlight, more than just for Vitamin D3

The human body is designed to thrive in sunlight, and it is not only the Vitamin D3 benefit.
A 20-year study of over 29,000 people found that those avoiding sun exposure had double the death rate from all causes!
This study did not measure D3 levels, but results from other D3 studies show that the high death rate from insufficient sun exposure can not be accounted for only by low Vitamin D3.

We also get Cholesterol Sulfate from sunlight on the skin.
Cholesterol sulfate protects red blood cells from breaking up. Without enough cholesterol sulfate, we get a condition called hemolysis, where the red blood cells die prematurely, spilling their contents into the blood.
Without sulfur, and without the sun, we cannot make cholesterol sulfate, a molecule which is both fat-soluble and water soluble, which is essential for the body to distribute cholesterol and sulfur throughout the body.
All artery walls have an endothelial lining, and these endothelial cells cannot work correctly when depleted in sulfate. They cannot control what gets into and out of cells, which promotes cardiovascular plaque.
Cholesterol Sulfate, in conjunction with it’s nitric sister, eNOS, determines how thick or thin or blood becomes. Sulfate makes it thicker, nitric makes it thinner, and this automatic regulatory system works very well as long as we have supplies of both, for which we need sunlight.
Interestingly, one thing that messes up these molecules is glyphosate (“Roundup” and other weedkiller trade names) so this is a good reason to avoid all GM (Genetically Modified) foods, which are all heavily sprayed with glyphosate.
Sulfur is incredibly important for health. Cholesterol sulfate protects against bacterial and virus infections and strengthens the immune system.
Cholesterol sulfate is essential for babies. Women normally have about 1.5 units of cholesterol sulfate in the blood, but in pregnancy, levels rise in the villi of the placenta to around 24 units!
Foods high in sulfur include eggs, beef, garlic, onions, sprouts, asparagus, kale, coconut oil, olive oil, but only where they are grown or raised in sulfur-rich soil (think organic).

Vitamin D sulfate is also made from sunlight, and is both water and fat soluble, so it can go anywhere in the body, distinct from the regular fat-soluble Vitamin D3 I have been talking about. Same with cholesterol sulfate. Not only is it both water and fat soluble, it can travel through the body on it’s own, where many other substances need to be “carried” by cholesterol wherever they need to go.
If we want healthy blood, we MUST have sunlight!
Humans make several other important peptide and hormone “photoproducts” when skin is exposed to UVB sunlight:

  • β-Endorphins are natural opiates that induce relaxation and increase pain tolerance
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptides are vasodilators (expand blood vessels) that protect us from hypertension (blood pressure), vascular inflammation, and oxidative stress
  • Substance P is a neuropeptide that increases blood flow and also regulates immune system response to acute stressors
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone is a polypeptide hormone, controlling cortisol (stress hormone) release by the adrenal glands, regulating immune system and inflammation
  • Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormone is a polypeptide hormone, reducing appetite, increasing libido, and increasing skin pigmentation

Sunlight contains a beneficial EMF (electromagnetic frequency) that is essential for health.
40% of sunlight is infrared, and the red and near-infrared frequencies interact with CCO (Cytochrome C Oxidase). CCO is a protein in the inner mitochondrial membrane, also part of the electron transport chain. CCO is a chromophore (a molecule that attracts and absorbs light), so sunlight improves ATP (the generation of energy). The optimal wavelengths for CCO are red at 630 nm to 660 nm (nanometers) and near-infrared at 810 nm to 850 nm.
LeanMachine gets sun exposure as often as possible. Others afraid of the sun may consider photobiomodulation therapy (use of near-infrared light treatment).
UVA exposure is generally considered harmful, as this is the most damaging kind of exposure for skin with no ability to generate Vitamin D, however there are benefits such as releasing NO (Nitric Oxide), discussed above. An important cellular signaling molecule that dilates blood vessels and reduces blood pressure.
This is closely tied to another molecule, eNOS (endothelial nitric oxide synthase) which regulates the “thickness” of blood. When blood becomes too thick, eNOS makes more nitric oxide which expands blood vessels and thins the blood. When blood is too thin, eNOS makes more sulfate. Sulfate is essential for the endothelial lining of all blood vessel walls. If we are low in sulfate, the wall can start breaking down and clots start to form to repair the damage. We can get more sulfur in the diet from onions, garlic, broccoli, egg yolks and other foods, or by supplements such as MSM (MethylSulfonoyl Methane) but we still need sunlight to make cholesterol sulfate which can be distributed through the body to keep us alive!

Apart from photoproducts, nitric oxide and cholesterol sulfate production, sunlight is essential for our circadian rhythm (body clock). Sunshine activates neurons in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, sending signals to the pineal gland which regulates production of the hormone melatonin. When the circadian rhythm is upset, melatonin and other hormone production is disrupted, leading to mood problems, poor cognition (thinking), metabolic syndrome (leads to diabetes) and increased risk of cancer.

Tanning Beds

Tanning beds are famous for increasing risk of melanomas, the most deadly form of skin cancer.
Tanning beds have been outlawed in all States of Australia, except in the Northern Territory, where they are still legal, but there are no commercial solariums there because the tropical climate makes sunlight tanning easy. However, this is seen by some as a knee-jerk reaction by politicians to win votes.
Most tanning beds produce UV-A and UV-B radiation, but some better units are available which produce only UV-B, which are much safer if used correctly.
Staying too long in even a quality tanning bed will cause skin damage, a precursor to many forms of skin cancer. Tanning beds that emit high levels of UV-A should be avoided completely.

Vitamin D3 from food

We get some vitamin D from the diet. Eggs, fish, cod liver oil are all good sources, and also come naturally with Vitamin A, but it is almost impossible to get enough D3 from the diet, so we must top up our D3 from sunlight or supplements or both. Milk contains some vitamin D, but calcium and vitamin D in milk are very poorly absorbed. Asian women are more likely than white women to be diagnosed with osteoporosis, so doctors claim this is caused by low milk consumption, but Asian women are much less likely to have a hip fracture (the worst kind), indicating that traditional DEXA scans (bone density tests) do not mean much, as dense bones are often not as strong as less dense but more flexible bones.
Africans generally have stronger bones than caucasians, even though they get less vitamin D3 from sunlight. They appear to be much more sensitive to the sunlight they do receive.

VitaminD3 from supplements

Most Vitamin D3 sold in Australia from chemist shops or supermarkets contain 1000 IU which may be enough to prevent rickets in young people, but is nowhere near optimum for immunity and bone strength, especially in older people, and not enough for anyone except small children to have an optimal immune system.
LeanMachine recommends Vitamin D3 5000 IU daily for almost a year’s supply, and this is the cheapest health insurance anyone can buy!
Vitamin K2 is also recommended, as this combination helps put calcium where it belongs, in bones and teeth, and reduces calcium buildup in blood vessels (arterial plaque).
Vitamin A is also recommended for health benefits as well as to eliminate any chance of toxicity.

No Cholesterol means no Vitamin D3

As explained above, cholesterol is the building-block for vitamin D3, also for every hormone in the body and many other functions.
About half the adult population over 60 in Australia and the USA is taking statin medication.
Sold under many names including Simvastatin, Lipitor, Advicor, Lovastatin, Mevacor, Vytorin, Zocor, Lipex, Simcor, Crestor, Pitavastatin, Pravastatin, Rosuvastatin, Fluvastatin, and Cerivastatin (withdrawn 2001).

The Lies about Cholesterol

Statins do lower cholesterol, but we NEED cholesterol, it is NOT the enemy it is made out to be. Yes, cholesterol is found in a badly inflamed body, but this is because the liver makes more cholesterol to repair damage caused by the inflammation, which is the REAL cause of poor health.
Statins reduce cholesterol by preventing the liver from producing as much cholesterol, but the job of the liver is to make cholesterol as required.
If we eat cholesterol foods (such as meat or eggs) the liver makes less, if we eat no cholesterol (such as a vegan diet), the liver makes more, which is the way it should be.
When statins are used, they attempt to shut down this natural process, and in so doing, also shuts down co-enzyme Q10 which is vital for healthy muscles.
And the heart is the most important muscle in the body – why clobber it with statins?
Statins also stop production of 7-dehydrocholesterol, so then we get almost zero vitamin D3 from sunlight.
Statins have shown no benefit to women whatsoever in many studies.
For men who have had a heart attack, statins have shown a slight reduction in deaths from future heart attacks, but in all patients, statins cause an INCREASE in deaths from all other causes!
Because statins knock out our Co-enzyme Q10 (often called the spark-plug for the heart), the patient can suffer extensive muscle damage, causing pain, reduced mobility and even death.
Drug companies say they have no idea what causes this increase in death from statins, but the answer is obvious to me – low vitamin D3!
Studies show that treatment with one fish oil capsule daily prevented 9% of deaths in cardiac patients over 4 years, while those given the Crestor statin drug had an INCREASED death rate of 1% over the same period.
The Framingham study, the biggest and longest study ever, showed that those with the lowest cholesterol died first, and those with the highest cholesteol lived longest!
But the drug companies continue to perpetuate these cholesterol lies to maximise profits from their biggest-selling drug.

How much D3 do we need?

The older we get, the more vitamin Vitamin D3 we need.
The only way to know how much we have is by a blood test, because ethnic background, skin colour, amount of tan, food, medication, supplements, geographic location, sun exposure, clothing, sunscreen, exercise, BMI and many other factors determine how much Vitamin D3 we absorb and retain.
Vitamin D3 is a fat-soluble vitamin, so daily levels do not vary much, as every fat cell in the body can store D3.
Always ask the doctor for a printed copy of your results so you can compare with any previous test and also get a true reading.
Unfortunately, most Australian labs say we need 60 to 160 nmol/L of D3, which is inadequate. Better labs say 75 nmol/L is the minimum, but we need more.
Values above 60 will prevent us from getting rickets, but will not give us good immunity.
For optimal immune system function, we should aim for the high end of the range of 125 to 175 nmol/L.
If we are battling cancer or some other serious disease, we should aim for 175 to 250 nmol/L but this requires careful monitoring and extra Vitamin K2 and Vitamin A to prevent toxicity.
Supplement values vary, and the RDA (recommended Daily Allowance) of 60 IU was alarmingly too low, and changed to 400 IU, originally determined as the minimum amount to prevent rickets.
Even the 400 IU allowance typically gives a blood test of 40 to 60 nmol/L which may barely stop rickets but will not provide a strong immune system.
Conservative studies determine that infants less than one year old need 400 IU daily, 1 year to adolescents need 400-600 IU daily, adults need 400-600 IU daily, and adults aged over 70 years need 400-800 IU daily.
More modern studies recommend babies take 400 IU, children 1000 IU, adults 4000 IU, and those over 70 may need 8000 IU daily.
Small doses are fine for strong bones, but for a strong immune system to ward off all disease, high doses are a must.
LeanMachine has taken 5000 IU daily for over 10 years, and has zero colds, flu or any other illness, not even a headache!

But don’t I get my Vitamin D3 from Milk?

Sorry, but you do not!
I was told to drink milk as a youngster, some 7 decades ago, and milk does indeed contain vitamin D and calcium, but these and other nutrients in milk are poorly absorbed in the gut.
Worse, pasteurised milk has most of the nutrients heated out of it, and homogenisation is very BAD for our health.
Homogenisation is a process making each fat globule 10 times smaller than normal, to save us the trouble of shaking the milk container to disperse the cream. The problem then is that these tiny fat globules then enter the bloodstream through imperfections in the gut lining, often referred to as “leaky gut syndrome”. When raw milk fat enters the blood directly like this, the immune system detects this as a foreign substance, and begins attacking these fat globules, and marks them as invaders. Now when we consume milk the regular way, and absorb it naturally through a healthy intestine, the immune system starts attacking this as well, as it has already been recognised as a foreign invader. The result: Allergies to Lactose, one of the main ingredients in milk, has reached epidemic proportions in the last few decades where homogenisation has become standard practice. Vitamin D3 can help moderate an over-reactive immune system, but the only safe way to drink milk is to only use NON-HOMOGENISED milk. Most supermarkets have it, but you have to look past the big-name brands to find it. Arnold Schwarzenegger famously said “Milk is for babies” and he was right.  Humans are designed to drink breast milk until age two, then lose the capacity to use it correctly in the body.
In many countries it is against the law to buy non-pasteurised milk, but we can at least buy non-homogenised milk if we feel we must have milk (and we do not need milk).
Some Asian countries have diets where milk is non-existent, and their bones are stronger, and broken bones are rare.
We get more useful Vitamin D3 from broccoli and other fresh vegetables than from milk!
Milk is also BAD for our bones, as it is acid-forming in the body, and all acids in the blood cause an immediate reaction in the body to neutralise the blood acid (otherwise we die!).
This reaction, controlled by the parathyroid glands, leaches potassium, calcium and magnesium from bones, teeth and organs, the fastest way the body can neutralise the acid.
If we must drink milk (and we do not have to for a healthy diet) then the ONLY milk to buy is FULL CREAM, UNHOMOGENISED milk, which you can find at good supermarkets if you look hard enough.
The only better product is the milk straight from the cow, or better still straight from mother’s breast (most mothers will not be impressed if you ask for milk this way!)

Getting enough of the right Vitamin D3

Sunlight is still the best way to get enough Vitamin D3 and Cholesterol Sulfate, but for many, this can be difficult or impossible.
Supplements are the next best choice, but the supplements we buy at Chemist shops or supermarkets in Australia have only around 1000 IU of Vitamin D3.
They are also often combined with Calcium, which LeanMachine does NOT recommend, but that is another story.
While this is better than nothing, most people require 5 to 10 times this much to bring their levels to “optimum”.
For most health specialists, “optimum” means over 60 or 75 nmol/l (30 ng/ml), and if your results come in at over this threshold, the doctor will say you are fine.
However, true experts in this field say that truly optimum for a normal healthy person for immunity to disease, is between 125 and 175 nmol/L (50 – 70 ng/ml).
For those recovering from a serious disease, optimum should be 175 to 250 nmol/L (70 – 100 ng/ml).
Vitamin D3 can be toxic at high doses for extended periods, so continuous levels over 250 nmol/L (100 ng/ml) should be avoided.
Blood tests are advised for all very high-dosage patients.
People most at risk of deficiency are the elderly, those with with dark skin, those who cover their body with clothing or sun screen, or work night shifts or underground and never see the light of day, and those who live furthest from the equator or in cloudy climates.
Those at risk may need 10,000IU daily supplements, the rest of us can usually get plenty with 5000IU, and the very young who get plenty of sunlight on a regular basis may not require any.
Remember that we only get Vitamin D3 from sun in a blue sky when the sun is high, from the UVB (Ultra-Violet light in the “B” range”).
When the sun is low in the sky, or when there is cloud, or when the light comes through a glass window, UVB is blocked and we only receive UV-A which is the damaging, cancer-causing radiation with Zero Vitamin D3 benefits.
Other tests: Depending on the condition, the doctor may order other tests to check for liver and kidney disease as well as a full blood count.
A full blood test for Vitamin D3 is:
25-hydroxyvitamin-D (25-D or D2/D3) or 25(OH)D or simply 25-D
1,25-dihydroxyvitamin-D3, or 1,25(OH)2 D3, or 1,25 2(OH), or simply 1,25-D
Most doctors will only test for 25(OH)D which is the storage form, which is fine for most people.
For those suspected of having Sarcoidosis (a rare condition) then both must be tested, and vitamin D supplementation and sunlight should be avoided altogether unless the active form 1,25(OH)2 is tested low.

Vaccinations

There are many reports of children suffering from Autism and other serious conditions after vaccinations.
Vitamin D3 supplements should be taken for at least 1 week before any vaccination to reduce risk of unfortunate reactions.
Panadol, Panadeine, Paracetamol, Tylenol, Acetaminophen, Atasol, etc must NEVER be taken before or after any vaccination, even though doctors incorrectly recommend it to reduce pain and fever.
Autism rates in the USA are 1 in 45, while Autism rates in Cuba are 1 in 12,000.
A few decades ago, Austism rates were only around 1 in 200, before Panadol (Tylenol, Acetaminophen in the USA)
Cuba has a high vaccination rate of 97%, but the difference:
These over-the counter pain medications are prescription-only items in Cuba.
Of course, no drug company is interested in conducting a study where the result may be that their “safe and effective” product causes Autism, but as far as LeanMachine is concerned, Vitamin D3 reduces the risk of sickness from almost any disease.
Besides Autism, Panadol can destroy liver function (most patients on the liver transplant waiting list are there because of Panadol), and Panadol is also acted upon by enzymes which then destroy the body’s reserves of L-Glutathione, the natural “Master Antioxidant” in the body.
If you want your child vaccinated anyway, DO give them vitamin D3 and DO NOT give them any pain or fever medication.
A little fever is the body’s way to fight the toxins in the vaccination and the best way to deal with it is to let it run it’s course.
However, a very high fever can lead to convulsions, especially in small children. The best way to bring down a very high fever is to place the child in a cool to lukewarm bath and keep water over the skin using a sponge or cloth.
No drugs required, and much safer and more effective than any drug.
Better still, vaccinations can be avoided altogether for those with a strong immune system.
For more information on vaccinations, see this article: Vaccinations.

Autoimmune conditions

Allergies, hives, arthritis, lupus, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disease, multiple sclerosis, etc, are all autoimmune conditions.
Little help is available from medications which merely help to ease symptoms.
Vitamin D3 builds the immune system and protects us from colds, flu and other diseases, but Vitamin D3 is also an Immune Moderator, helping to dampen the effect of the immune system over-reacting, the cause of auto-immune disease.
Vitamin D3 can also help treat the cause of the symptoms, often Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), found in over 70% of autoimmune patients.
H. pylori can invade the gut via contaminated water or food, or from contact with infected people or animals, causing gut inflammation, disrupting the immune system.
Vitamin D3 effectively destroys H. pylori and restores the immune system, often reducing allergy symptoms by 30% in seven days, and another 40% in 12 weeks.
H. pylori infects around 30% of adults in the western world, more if we are over 60 with low Vitamin D3 levels.
A blood test can give your D3 levels, but the lab will say 60 to 75 nmol/L is OK, but we need 125 nmol/L minimum to destroy H. pylori.
Mushrooms, eggs, wild-caught salmon, etc have natural Vitamin D3 but the modern Western diet is lacking in these. Mushrooms grown in the dark will have no vitamin D3, but 30 minutes of exposure to direct sunlight can generate significant D3 levels.

Vitamin D3
The latest science Says: “It’s not just about bones, it’s about your total well-being!
Professor Michael Holick:
We now think that maintaining adequate Vitamin D3 levels are important for decreasing the risk of prostate cancer, breast cancer and colon cancer.
There is some evidence that in young children if they are fortified with vitamin D3 from 12 months old it can reduce the risk of type 1 diabetes by 80%“.
Professor Philip Sambrook:
We have always thought it could not happen in Australia – it is too sunny a country. However, people do not get sunlight for various reasons and if you do not get some sunlight you do not make vitamin D3. We do not get it much in food any more so for that reason, deficiency is quite common. And the vitamin protects healthy cells while also killing cancer cells.”

LeanMachine online supplements

Note: This online supplement shop is now closed, but each product page contains a link to the best supplier of that product.

Disclaimer

LeanMachine is not a doctor, and everyone should consult with their own health professional before taking any product to ensure there is no conflict with existing prescription medication.
LeanMachine has been researching nutrition and health since 2010 and has completed many relevant studies including:

  • Open2Study, Australia – Food, Nutrition and Your Health
  • RMIT University, Australia – Foundations of Psychology
  • Swinburne University of Technology, Australia – Chemistry – Building Blocks of the
  • World
  • University of Washington, USA – Energy, Diet and Weight
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA – Health Issues for Aging
  • Populations
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA – International Nutrition
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA – Methods in Biostatistics I
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA – Methods in Biostatistics II
  • Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA – Principles of Human Nutrition
  • TUFTS University, USA – Nutrition and Medicine
  • TUFTS University, USA – Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease I and Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease II
  • Technical Learning College, USA – Western Herbology, Identification, Formulas
  • Bath University, England – Inside Cancer
  • WebMD Education – The Link Between Stroke and Atrial Fibrillation
  • WebMD Education – High Potassium: Causes and Reasons to Treat
  • Leiden University Medical Center, Netherlands – Anatomy of the Abdomen and Pelvis
  • MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) – A Clinical Approach to the Human Brain

LeanMachine has now examined thousands of studies, journals and reports related to health and nutrition and this research is ongoing.

Copyright © 1999-2020 Brenton Wight and BJ&HJ Wight trading as Lean Machine abn 55293601285

Genistein: The Soy Nutrient That Puts Bone Drugs to Shame

© 14th October 2019 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
https://www.greenmedinfo.health/blog/genistein-soy-nutrient-puts-bone-drugs-shame

Posted on: Monday, October 14th 2019 at 9:30 am

If you are one of the estimated 40 million US-women who are aged 51 and older–past the average age of natural menopause–you may be considering hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, to maintain youthful vigor, as well as ward-off the hazards of brittle bones and heart disease. Did you know that a nutrient in fermented soy foods has been clinically-proven to put bone drugs to shame, with no negative side effects?

Drugs like Fosamax (alendronate) and Evista (raloxifene) and hormones like estradiol (estrogen) are often prescribed by healthcare practitioners to preserve vital bone density and prevent problems associated with menopause such as fractures and osteoporosis. But what is behind the over-prescription of these drugs when a person has no symptoms, no disease, and is unaware that there is even a problem?

Medicalizing a “Non-Problem”

The marketing of “drugs as cures” by the pharmaceutical industry is a familiar trope: promotional budget (aka, wine-and-dine doctors), followed by a wave of television advertising, and prescriptions soon start flooding the populace. In many cases, a new condition is even manufactured to fit the pill.[1]

According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, “More than half of all Caucasian women age 50 and older are estimated to have low bone mass, which means their bones are getting weaker but they don’t yet have osteoporosis.”[2] In the early 1990s, a consortium of doctors gathered at the World Health Organization (WHO) to decide what disease state to project onto these women. The diagnosis of osteopenia, a condition described as a precursor to osteoporosis, was the result.

It is a fact that even healthy women gradually lose bone density as they age. This natural process has been vastly over-medicalized, with more than 50% of postmenopausal white women, and 35% of same-age black women falling within the diagnostic category of osteopenia.3 As we explored in the article Osteoporosis Myth: The Dangers of High Bone Mineral Density, this has created a feeding frenzy for the medical industrial complex. Essentially they converted a symptomless state that most women were unaware of into a “disease” by making people think the natural thinning of bone that attends the aging process a disease. The Director of the Oregon Osteoporosis Center put it very succinctly: ”We have medicalized a non-problem.”[4]  Moroever, having denser bones than is normal for one’s age will significantly increase a woman’s risk of malignant breast cancer.

Creating the Pill-Based Solution

In the decade that followed the conception of osteopenia, an array of bone-density drugs hit the market. In addition to Fosamax and Evista, the use of estrogen and other hormone replacement drugs to combat bone loss was popularized. Hormone Replacement Therapy, or HRT, became a popular way for aging women to combat both the inward and outward signs of a naturally-aging body, including loss of bone density.

But by the early 2000s, the harms of synthetic hormones were being increasingly validated by science. As news spread of the myths these drugs were selling, the popularity of HRT as a preventative treatment began to decline. Meanwhile, lawsuits against the makers of other bone-density drugs started stacking up. Merck Pharmaceutical has numerous pending lawsuits for Fosamax (alendronate),[5] for tragic complications from use that include “frozen bone” syndrome which causes bones to snap in-half as if frozen solid, to the horrific “dead jaw” syndrome, where ensuing infection causes the bones of the jaw to literally crumble. Hormone therapy drug Evista’s manufacturer, Eli Lilly and Company, had to issue a warning in 2006 about increased risk of death from stroke for women who use their drug.[6] Evista (raloxifene) has also been shown in studies to increase risks of pulmonary embolism, venous thrombosis, and coronary artery disease.

 Description: https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/XXK3FXANuLS0HxbJEZ3wc2szYcJzPKYhivqNoCvkdIMbyufOp9kExNFbOrraeatDZzbyWYsLnpl1STBYWADatVMuKZSBwUyJGkcCHNUzOQP0-EUn-ZBQx4Qe6kCCP3dxH8xgnbmo

According to Dr. Susan Ott, a specialist in Metabolic Bone Disease at the University of Washington, “Many people believe that these drugs are bone-builders, but the evidence shows they are actually bone-hardeners.” This class of drugs, known as bisphosphonates, have been linked to over 40 adverse health effects. Risks associated with these drugs are most pronounced for long-term use, defined as ten years or more.[7]

Although it is produced naturally in the body, estradiol as an estrogen replacement may have cardiotoxic and carcinogenic properties when levels are too high.[8] Supplementation in otherwise healthy women can dangerously inflate these levels, as can any non-related health condition that causes detoxification pathways to work sub-optimally.

Genistein: Nature’s Superior Prescription

Nature has supplied humankind’s healthiest medicine cabinet since long before the American Medical Association (AMA) decided that only pharmaceutical drugs can heal people. And when it comes to maintaining healthy bones into our senior years, there is a plant-based solution that puts HRT and bone drugs to shame: it’s called genistein. An isoflavone, or bioactive flavonoid found primarily in beans such as soy, fava, garbanzos, and coffee, genistein is a phytoestrogen due to its similarity in structure to human estrogen. Eating a diet high in phytoestrogens has been attributed with alleviating symptoms of menopause and conveying preventative or therapeutic effects against canceratherosclerosis, and osteoporosis.[9] Of all isoflavones, genistein possesses the strongest estrogenic activity.[10]

The powerful effects of genistein on bone health were illustrated in a landmark study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology in 2008. Using an animal model of menopausal osteoporosis, researchers concluded that prescription bone-density drugs alendronate (Fosamax), raloxifene (Evista), and estradiol (estrogen, E2), are all inferior to the phytoestrogen genistein in preserving bone mineral density (quantity) and strength (quality). What makes this finding so groundbreaking are the comparative benefits-versus-risks of these four different forms of treatment for bone-loss. Genistein is a plant derivative that acts naturally and holistically on the body, strengthening what is weak without causing damage to other parts of the body. In contrast, all three prescription drugs are made from biologically-foreign chemicals (xenobiotics) that can have profound, unintended adverse health effects like “frozen” and crumbling bones, among other horrific outcomes.

Genistein has been extensively researched for its potential therapeutic role in osteoporosis prevention and treatment, as well as hundreds of other health conditions. And while phytoestrogens have come under scrutiny as part of the broader reevaluation of HRT, genistein’s natural biocompatibility appears to have a more positive effect on the body than synthetic hormones in cases when endogenously-produced estrogen levels fail to meet the body’s optimal requirements. Genistein’s highly selective activity is capable of binding and stimulating bone estrogen receptor sites resulting in increased strength/density for bones. Genistein has much weaker estrogenic activity compared to estradiol, yet it is capable of binding to the same estrogen receptors for a much longer duration, which may result in significant, longer-term positive effects without the risks associated with high estrogen levels. This process of binding with estrogen receptors provides an added layer of protection against cancer by preventing the estrogen from binding and initiating cancer growth.

In addition to estrogenic and anti-cancer activity, genistein is a powerful antioxidant. Consuming genistein regularly in the diet can remove dangerous free radicals from the bloodstream, effectively slowing down the aging process. Other studies show it is highly effective at lowering blood pressure and improving the quality of arterial walls, validating genistein’s cardioprotective properties.[11]

Eat Your Way to Bone Health

The evidence speaks loudly that more awareness must be given to natural, food-based alternatives to pharmaceutical drugs, particularly when a substance has mountains of scientific data proving efficacy. Fermented soy–the most potent form of food-based genistein– has a long-standing history as a healing food, spanning many centuries and numerous cultures. Studies have shown that genistein is primarily absorbed in the GI tract, where it is extensively metabolized throughout the body. This makes food an ideal way to supplement this vital nutrient.

Natto, a traditional Japanese food made by cooking fermented soybeans, has long been believed to destroy blood clots and improve blood glow, among other benefits. Tempeh, a fermented soybean cake with a firm texture and nutty taste, is a popular protein source for vegans and vegetarians, as well as staple in the diets of many Asian countries. Miso, a fermented soybean paste used to make delicious miso soup, is an inexpensive and easy way to integrate genistein into the daily diet.

As eating well becomes more popular and even fashionable, products such as fermented soy drinks and snack foods have become available at select markets and specialty stores. Asian markets are a great place to find a large variety of fermented soy foods, however it should be noted that these labels may not indicate if the product is made from GMO-soybeans. With more than 90% of all soybeans in the world now a genetically-modified version of the crop,[12] it is vital to source organic, non-GMO soy and genistein products. Caution should be exercised when purchasing supplements for this same reason, and because genistein’s poor solubility “may prevent absorption of larger doses without proper formulations.”[13]

It is possible to eat your way to bone health and hormonal balance. Both your body and your bones deserve nothing less!

For additional research on the health benefits of Genistein, visit the GreenMedInfo database on the subject.


References

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1369125/

[2] https://www.nof.org/preventing-fractures/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/

[3] https://www.aarp.org/health/drugs-supplements/info-04-2009/are_women_being_overtreated.html

[4] WHO (1994). “Assessment of fracture risk and its application to screening for postmenopausal osteoporosis. Report of a WHO Study Group”. World Health Organization technical report series 843: 1–129. PMID 7941614.

[5] https://www.drugwatch.com/fosamax/litigation/

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1490012/

[7] https://the-medical-dictionary.com/fosamax_article_1.htm

[8] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4560048/

[9] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3074428/

[10] https://www.phytochemicals.info/phytochemicals/genistein.php

[11] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2263007/

[12] https://wwf.panda.org/what_we_do/footprint/agriculture/soy/soyreport/soy_controversies/genetically_modified_soy/

[13] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4010305/

Originally published: 2018-03-23

Article updated: 2019-14-2019

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Health Benefits of MSM — A Powerful Sulfur Donor


Reproduced from original article:
https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/10/14/msm-health-benefits.aspx

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola – Medically reviewed by Dr. Stephanie Seneff
Fact Checked – October 14, 2019
msm health benefits

STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Sulfur is the third most abundant mineral in your body and plays important roles in many bodily processes, including metabolism and detoxification
  • Sulfur bonds are required for proteins to maintain their shape, and these bonds determine the biological activity of the proteins. Sulfur is also required for the proper structure and biological activity of enzymes
  • Sulfur is crucial for healthy liver function and the prevention of liver disease. A derangement in sulfur amino acid metabolism is found even in mild forms of liver disease
  • Excellent sources of sulfur include homemade bone broth, organic pastured eggs, grass fed meats, seafood, cruciferous vegetables and alliums like onions and garlic. Sulfur can also be obtained through supplementation with MSM and/or by taking Epsom salt baths
  • MSM is widely used in the treatment of pain, especially pain associated with arthritic conditions. Research has shown it can significantly decrease pain and improve physical function in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee

Sulfur is a somewhat “forgotten” nutrient you don’t hear mentioned very often, but it’s very important for optimal body function and health. You get most of your sulfur from certain proteins in your diet, specifically the amino acids methionine, cysteine, cystine, homocysteine, homocystine and taurine.1

Of these, the two most important sources are methionine and cysteine. Methionine is an essential amino acid, which means it cannot be synthesized by your body and must be supplied through your diet. Cysteine is conditionally essential, because it can be synthesized from methionine but not from inorganic forms of sulfur.2

Neither of these primary sulfur-containing amino acids is stored in your body per se, although glutathione is a key storage form for sulfur.3 Glutathione is composed of three amino acids: cysteine, glutamate and glycine, and is your body’s most potent antioxidant.

Glutathione also keeps many other antioxidants performing at peak levels, and cysteine availability is thought to be a rate-limiting factor for glutathione synthesis.4

While sulfur is found in many foods, sulfur deficiency may still be quite common5 — in part due to sulfur deficiency in crops,6 and in part due to low consumption of sulfur-rich foods7 such as leafy greens, cruciferous veggies, alliums8 such as garlic and onions, seafood, grass fed meats and organic pastured eggs.

Frequent use of drugs that require sulfur for excretion and/or detoxification can also contribute to an inadequate sulfur status. Acetaminophen is one such example.9 A vegan diet can also put you at increased risk for sulfur deficiency, because plant-based foods contain fewer sulfur-containing amino acids than animal-based foods.10

The Importance of Sulfur

According to Stephanie Seneff, Ph.D., who has written several papers11,12,13,14 on sulfur and sulfur metabolism and its role in human disease, sulfur plays a role in many biological processes, including metabolism15 and the sulfonation of hormones,16 and deficiency appears to play a role in a wide range of health problems and diseases, including:

  • Obesity
  • Heart disease
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Autism17

Required in the creation of connective tissues such as cartilage, tendons and ligaments, sulfur is also essential for healthy joints, and deficiency has been linked to joint pain and joint-related diseases.18 Other benefits, uses and sources are also noted in the paper “Sulfur in Human Nutrition and Applications in Medicine”:19

“Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), a volatile component in the sulfur cycle, is another source of sulfur found in the human diet … Organic sulfur, as SAAs [sulfur-containing amino acids], can be used to increase synthesis of S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe), glutathione (GSH), taurine, and N-acetylcysteine (NAC).

MSM may be effective for the treatment of allergy, pain syndromes, athletic injuries, and bladder disorders.

Other sulfur compounds such as SAMe … taurine, glucosamine or chondroitin sulfate, and reduced glutathione may also have clinical applications in the treatment of a number of conditions such as depression, fibromyalgia, arthritis, interstitial cystitis, athletic injuries, congestive heart failure, diabetes, cancer, and AIDS.”

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Sulfur 101

As explained by the featured study above, sulfur is the third most abundant mineral in your body, based on percentage of total body weight.20 Sulfur bonds are required for proteins to maintain their shape, and these bonds determine the biological activity of the proteins.

For example, hair and nails consist of a tough protein called keratin, which is high in sulfur, whereas connective tissue and cartilage contain proteins with flexible sulfur bonds, giving the structure its flexibility.

With age, the flexible tissues in your body tend to lose their elasticity, leading to sagging and wrinkling of skin, stiff muscles and painful joints. A shortage of sulfur likely contributes to these age-related problems.

In addition to bonding proteins, sulfur is also required for the proper structure and biological activity of enzymes. If you don’t have sufficient amounts of sulfur in your body, enzymes cannot function properly.

A cascade of health problems may thus ensue, since your metabolic processes rely on biologically active enzymes. You can learn more about this in “Enzyme Fundamentals.” Sulfur also plays an important role in:

Your body’s electron transport system, as part of iron/sulfur proteins in mitochondria, the energy factories of your cells21
Synthesizing important metabolic intermediates, such as glutathione — one of the most important antioxidants that your body produces — SAMe, taurine and NAC22
Detoxification23 — Without sulfur, glutathione (your body’s built-in detoxifier) is rendered ineffective
Thiamine (vitamin B1) and biotin (B7) conversion, which in turn are essential for converting carbohydrates into energy
Proper insulin function24 — The insulin molecule consists of two amino acid chains connected to each other by sulfur bridges, without which the insulin cannot perform its biological activity25
Glucose metabolism — One hypothesis26 is that if a sufficient amount of sulfur is available, it will act as a decoy to glucose, effectively diverting it to reduce the sulfur rather than glycating and causing damage. This would have the beneficial effect of reducing chronic inflammation, as sugar (glucose) is highly inflammatory and wreaks havoc in your body

Sulfur for Liver Health

Sulfur is also crucial for healthy liver function and the prevention of liver disease. As noted in one study,27 “a derangement in sulfur amino acid metabolism, possibly located at various steps along the trans-sulfuration pathway” is found even in mild forms of liver disease.

Part of its influence on your liver has to do with its influence over glutathione. As noted in the 2015 paper,28 “Metabolism of Sulfur-Containing Amino Acids in the Liver: A Link Between Hepatic Injury and Recovery”:

“The transsulfuration pathway is connected to the production of glutathione (GSH), which has potent antioxidant capacity in the liver. Accumulating data show that GSH depletion renders the liver vulnerable to oxidative stress and prone to progression of liver disease.”

Similarly, the journal Nutrients reports that MSM has been shown to attenuate “cytokine expression in vivo for induced colitis … and liver injury,” and that MSM has also been shown to have a beneficial effect on liver cancer.29

Another crucial nutrient for liver health and the prevention of chronic liver disease, including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, is choline,30 detailed in “Choline Is Crucial for Liver Health.”

MSM for Osteoarthritic Knee Pain

Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is known as a sulfur donor, being 34% elemental sulfur by weight.31 Many of the benefits of MSM supplementation are related to its ability to reduce inflammation, regulate the balance of reactive oxygen species and antioxidant enzymes,32 and modulate your immune response.33

As a supplement, MSM is widely used in the treatment of pain, especially pain associated with arthritic conditions. One clinical trial34 found that people with osteoarthritis of the knee who took 3 grams of MSM twice a day for 12 weeks experienced significantly decreased pain and improved physical function, compared to a placebo.

Another randomized double-blind placebo-controlled study35 found patients with mild to moderate osteoarthritis benefited from oral glucosamine and MSM, both individually and in combination. Here, the treatment groups received 500 milligrams (mg) of glucosamine and/or 500 mg of MSM three times a day for 12 weeks. According to the authors:36

“Glucosamine, MSM and their combination produced an analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect in osteoarthritis. Combination therapy showed better efficacy in reducing pain and swelling and in improving the functional ability of joints than the individual agents.

All the treatments were well tolerated. The onset of analgesic and anti-inflammatory activity was found to be more rapid with the combination than with glucosamine. It can be concluded that the combination of MSM with glucosamine provides better and more rapid improvement in patients with osteoarthritis.”

Sulfur’s Role in Heart Disease

In 2011, I interviewed Seneff about the influence of sulfur on health and disease. I’ve included that interview above for your convenience. In it, Seneff discusses the crucial connections between sulfur, cholesterol and vitamin D.

Her research suggests heart disease may actually be related to cholesterol sulfate deficiency, and in the interview, she explains how elevated LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is a sign of this deficiency.

To summarize, high levels of LDL cholesterol is your body’s way of compensating for cholesterol sulfate deficiency. When LDL is turned into plaque, blood platelets inside the plaque produce cholesterol sulfate, which your heart and brain need for optimal function.

Seneff also explains why lowering LDL with statins can lead to heart failure. Essentially, by elevating LDL, your body is protecting itself from the harmful effects of cholesterol sulfate deficiency. When you simply remove the LDL, you remove this “backup” mechanism aimed at keeping your heart going strong. As a result, heart failure becomes a distinct possibility.

That said, high LDL is correlated with cardiovascular disease, so the question then becomes: How can your body produce cholesterol sulfate without having to create harmful LDL?

Under normal, healthy conditions, your skin synthesizes both cholesterol sulfate and vitamin D3 sulfate when exposed to sunlight. These two sulfated sterols are water soluble and can travel freely in your bloodstream.

If you have sufficient amounts of cholesterol sulfate in circulation, your body does not need to produce more cholesterol-transporting LDL. This results in less plaque buildup in the arteries of the heart, because cholesterol sulfate is plentiful.

In essence, sensible sun exposure may be an important part of heart and cardiovascular health. In fact, studies have shown that those who live in countries with abundant sunlight have a lower risk to heart disease. Vitamin D3 supplements, on the other hand, are unsulfated. This is a significant drawback, as the unsulfated form needs LDL as a vehicle of transport.

Seneff believes that vitamin D is basically a signaling molecule that informs the tissues that there is an abundant supply of cholesterol sulfate, and cholesterol sulfate is the real beneficial product of sunlight exposure to the skin. Her suspicion is that the oral nonsulfated form of vitamin D is unlikely to provide the same benefits as the vitamin D created in your skin from sun exposure, since it is not accompanied by cholesterol sulfate, and therefore provides a false signal.

Sulfur Intolerance May Be a Sign of Toxicity

As mentioned earlier, sulfur-rich foods37 include leafy greens, cruciferous veggies, alliums,38 seafood, grass fed meats and organic pastured eggs. Another excellent source, and perhaps the best one, is homemade bone broth made from organically raised animals.

Either drink the broth regularly, or use it for soups and stews. Connective tissues are sulfur-rich, and when you slow-cook the bones, you dissolve these nutrients out of the bone and into the water.

If you have poor tolerance for foods high in sulfur, it may be an indication of an overgrowth of sulfur-reducing bacteria in your gut. These bacteria, such as Desoulfovibrio and Bilophila wadsworthia, produce hydrogen sulfide gas from sulfur-based food sources, which can destroy the gut lining and cause gastrointestinal discomfort.

A defect in the enzyme that oxidizes sulfur to sulfate, called sulfite oxidase, will lead to an overgrowth of these sulfur-reducing bacteria, and toxic chemical exposures may disrupt sulfite oxidase.

Furthermore, these bacteria also convert mercury to a toxic organic form called methyl mercury. When sulfite oxidase is deficient, mercury cannot be converted to mercury sulfate, which is the nontoxic form of mercury that can be excreted by the body. Thus, disruption of sulfite oxidase results in impaired sulfation capacity and increased mercury toxicity.

Other food additives such as food dyes can also exacerbate problems in your phenol sulfur-transferase (PST) sulfation pathway by suppressing PST enzyme activity. Sulfation is a critical step in detoxification of toxic phenols.

To address this situation, it’s recommended you initially go on a low-sulfur diet and reduce your toxic exposure by eating organic and avoiding household toxins of all kinds.

As your toxicity level is reduced, you can start adding sulfur-rich foods back into your diet, one at a time. Next, it’s important to enhance your body’s detoxification process by supplying more sulfate, either through diet or supplementation.

How to Boost Your Sulfur Intake — Diet and Supplementation

Aside from sulfur-rich foods, sulfur can also be obtained through supplementation with MSM. You can learn more about MSM in my interview with Rod Benjamin.

Benjamin is the director of technical development for Bergstrom Nutrition, the largest producer of the highest quality MSM produced by distillation purification. In his interview, we discuss suggested dosages and how to identify a high-quality supplement.

The sulfur-containing amino acids cysteine and taurine can also be used, both of which are available in supplement form. The supplement form of cysteine is NAC, the benefits of which I expounded on in “The Many Benefits of NAC — One of the Most Important Supplements You’ve Likely Never Heard Of.”

Another excellent source of sulfur is taking regular Epsom salt baths. Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) is made up of magnesium, sulfur and oxygen. While most of the benefits associated with Epsom salt baths relates to magnesium39 — such as improved sleep, stress reduction and reduced pain and muscle cramping — its sulfur content is also important for health.

Epsom salt baths are often preferable if you’re toxic, as the sulfur in Epsom salt is readily available to your body without having to be converted. As a general recommendation, use 1 to 2 cups of Epsom salt to a tub of water. The warmer the water, the more of the salt will be dissolved, and the more your body will be able to absorb as the heat opens your pores.

If you experience a negative reaction, such as irritability or hyperactivity, decrease the amount used and incrementally increase the amount based on your tolerance. Alternatively, use 1 part Epsom salt to 2 parts water for a foot bath. Soak your feet for about 30 minutes.

Toxicity data shows MSM is extremely safe and can be taken at high doses. As noted in the journal Nutrients, “As a Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) approved substance, MSM is well-tolerated by most individuals at dosages of up to 4 grams daily,”40 although toxicity studies have reported no observed adverse effects up to a level of 5 grams per kilo per day.41

That said, potential side effects at higher doses include intestinal discomfort, ankle swelling and skin rashes. These are likely detoxifying effects that can typically be mitigated or minimized by cutting back on the initial dosage and slowly working your way up.

 Sources and References

Osteoporosis Is Scurvy of the Bone, Not Calcium Deficiency

© 20th September 2019 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/osteoporosis-scurvy-bone-not-calcium-deficiency

Posted on: Sunday, November 4th 2018 at 5:00 am
Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

How to Prevent Osteoporosis

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola  – Fact Checked

September 25, 2019

STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Internationally, osteoporosis affects 1 in 10 women aged 60; 2 in 10 women aged 70; 4 in 10 women aged 80; and two-thirds of women aged 90. Across Europe, the rate of prevalence among men ranges between 6.7% and 6.9%
  • An estimated 34 million Americans also have low bone density, known as osteopenia, which raises your risk of fractures and may progress into osteoporosis
  • Bisphosphonate drugs prescribed for osteoporosis have been shown to weaken bone and cause microcracks that heighten your risk for atypical bone fractures
  • Nutrients that are important for healthy bone growth and strength include vitamin D, vitamins K1 and K2, calcium, magnesium, collagen, boron and strontium
  • Most load-bearing exercises fail to produce sufficient osteogenic load to trigger bone growth. Research suggests the load needed to trigger bone growth in the hip is 4.2 times your bodyweight. Blood flow restriction training is an alternative that not only appears to have a beneficial effect on bone health but is also viable for the elderly and those who can’t lift heavy weights

According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation,1 osteoporosis affects approximately 1 in 10 women aged 60; 2 in 10 women aged 70; 4 in 10 women aged 80; and two-thirds of women aged 90. Prevalence in all age groups is far higher in women than in men. Across Europe, the rate of prevalence among men ranges between 6.7% and 6.9%.

With osteoporosis — brittle bone — comes the risk of bone fractures due to a fall, and hip fractures in particular are notorious for raising an older individual’s risk of death.2 An estimated 34 million Americans also have low bone density, known as osteopenia, which raises your risk of fractures and may progress into osteoporosis. As noted in a StatPearls paper on osteopenia:3

“In the United States, 54% of postmenopausal women are osteopenic, and an additional 30% are already considered osteoporotic. By age 80, this relative trend predictably shifts in favor of osteoporosis as 27% of women are osteopenic, and 70% are osteoporotic …

Fragility fractures significantly compromise a patient’s quality of life and financially devastate the healthcare system. Roughly 2 million fragility fractures occur each year in the United States alone, and by 2025 this number is expected to increase to over 3 million …

The overall impact of fragility fractures on the healthcare system is staggering. In 2005, direct costs of care associated with fragility fractures alone tallied $19 billion, and the direct and indirect costs of care are expected to surpass $25 billion by 2025.

In addition, fragility fractures significantly decrease the quality of life, and hip fractures alone are associated with a one-year mortality rate of greater than 20%.”

What’s the Best Way to Prevent Osteoporosis?

In the featured video, Dr. Deborah M. Kado, director of the osteoporosis program at the University of California, gives a lecture on osteoporosis, its treatment and preventive measures you can take to minimize your risk of bone fractures as you age. She points out there are both nonmodifiable and modifiable risk factors for bone fractures.

Nonmodifiable risk factors include age, sex, ethnicity, family history, a history of previous fractures and menopause (among women). Modifiable risk factors include diet, vitamin D deficiency, balance and lifestyle choices such as smoking, lack of exercise and excessive alcohol consumption.4 As noted in StatPearl’s paper on osteopenia,5 medical factors can influence your risk as well.

Medical conditions that raise your risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis include “hyperparathyroidism, anorexia, malabsorption syndromes, hyperthyroidism, chronic renal failure, hypogonadism, amenorrhea/oligomenorrhea, early onset menopause, and chronic conditions resulting in calcium and/or vitamin D deficiencies.”

Drugs that can trigger or worsen bone loss include “excess glucocorticoids/long-term steroid use, valproic acid, proton pump inhibitors, anti-epileptics and chemotherapy agents.” The chemical triclosan has also been shown to increase your risk of osteoporosis. I discuss this in my July 10, 2019, article, “Can Toothpaste Cause Osteoporosis?

Kado also touches on the primary treatment in conventional medicine, which is the use of bisphosphonate drugs6 such as Fosamax. While she doesn’t advice people to take them or not, she does point out they have their own set of dangers.

These include a higher risk for thighbone fractures — the very thing you’re trying to avoid. Indeed, Fosamax has been warning about atypical femur fractures on its package insert since 2011.7

Bisphosphonate drugs have also been linked to osteonecrosis of the jaw8 (decay of the jawbone), inflammation of the eye,9 liver damage,10 a twofold risk of atrial fibrillation,11 esophageal cancer, 12 kidney toxicity13 and hypocalcemia14 (low blood calcium level).

In my view, these drugs are to be avoided, as they do not address the underlying problem. While bisphosphonates make your bone thicker, they simultaneously make it mechanically weaker.

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Bisphosphonate Drugs Make Your Bone More Prone to Fractures

Evidence for this was presented in a 2017 study,15,16 which used a particle accelerator to generate exceptionally detailed images of the internal structure of bone samples from 10 hip fracture patients treated with bisphosphonates (BP), 14 samples from naïve fractures (bone fractures in patients that were not treated with the drugs), and six non-fractured controls. Results showed:

“BP bone was 28% lower in strength than untreated hip fracture bone, and 48% lower in strength than non-fractured control bone … BP-treated bone had 24% more microcracks than naïve fractured bone and 51% more than non-fractured control …

BP therapy had no detectable mechanical benefit in the specimens examined. Instead, its use was associated with substantially reduced bone strength.

This low strength may be due to the greater accumulation of microcracks and a lack of any discernible improvement in bone volume or microarchitecture. This preliminary study suggests that the clinical impact of BP-induced microcrack accumulation may be significant.”

Another paper17 published that same year in Scientific Reports suggested that “bisphosphonates may oversuppress remodeling resulting in accumulation of microcracks.” The authors further explained:18

“Bisphosphonate-treated bone from fracture patients had the highest density and volume of microcracks compared to bone from the untreated fracture patients and healthy ageing individuals. Correspondingly, bisphosphonate-treated samples also had reduced ultimate tensile strength … compared to the control groups.

Our results, therefore, suggest that the reduced bone strength in the bisphosphonate group is due to the accumulation of microcracks. In this subgroup of bisphosphonate-treated patients that suffered a fracture, the accumulation of microcracks following treatment with bisphosphonates may have compromised the trabecular microstructure. As a result, there may have been weakening of the bone and consequently, an increased risk of fracture.

Bisphosphonate-treated bone also demonstrated a lower density and volume of perforations compared to osteoporotic bone, which may be reflective of the protective effects of bisphosphonates in limiting the development of perforations through osteoclastic inhibition. However, it is the oversuppression of remodelling that has detrimental effects, as this predisposes to microcrack accumulation and propagation.”

Healthy Bones Through Nutrition

Bone is living tissue constantly undergoing the addition of new bone cells and the removal of old ones. New bone is added faster than old bone is removed until your late 20s.19

“Peak bone mass” is a term used to describe how large and strong our bones can get. Reaching peak bone mass typically occurs between the ages of 25 and 30, followed by greater resorption of bone than bone formation.20

A foundational aspect of maintaining healthy bone is therefore to be metabolically fit. Your diet in general is a core consideration, with certain nutrients being required for bone health specifically.

As noted in the paper “Naturopathic Approaches to Preventing and Treating Osteoporosis,”21 published in the Natural Medicine Journal, “The best approach to getting sufficient nutrients to build and maintain strong bones is to consistently make healthy food choices.” Among the most important nutrients for bone health are:22

Vitamin D — Vitamin D plays a regulatory role in the absorption of calcium and phosphorous, which are important for healthy bones. As explained in the Natural Medicine Journal:23

“If vitamin D levels are low, parathyroid hormone (PTH) increases and triggers osteoclasts to release calcium into the blood via bone readsorption. If this process continues over time, it weakens bone and leads to osteoporosis …

Deficiency can create secondary hyperparathyroidism, leading to a loss of collagen matrix and minerals, which increases the risk of osteoporosis and fractures. Poor bone remodeling due to higher osteoclast vs. osteoblast activity can occur with low levels of vitamin D …”

Vitamin K1 — Vitamin K1, phylloquinone, is found in plants and green vegetables. Aside from playing a crucial role in blood clotting, research shows it’s also important for bone health. Osteocalcin is a protein produced by your osteoblasts (cells responsible for bone formation), and is utilized within the bone as an integral part of the bone-forming process.

However, osteocalcin must be “carboxylated” before it can be effective. Vitamin K1 functions as a cofactor for the enzyme that catalyzes the carboxylation of osteocalcin.24 As noted in a 2017 paper25 in the journal Metabolism, “it seems to promote the transition of osteoblasts to osteocytes and also limits the process of osteoclastogenesis.”

Vitamin K2 — Vitamin K2, menoquinone, which is synthesized by intestinal bacteria, works synergistically with calcium, magnesium and vitamin D to build strong, healthy bone.

Vitamin K2 directs calcium to your bones and prevents it from being deposited in your soft tissues, organs and joint spaces. Vitamin K2 also activates the protein hormone osteocalcin, produced by osteoblasts, which is needed to bind calcium into the matrix of your bone.

The pooled evidence of seven Japanese trials assessing the ability of vitamin K2 (menoquinone-4) to prevent fracture rates found:26

“When we assessed absolute differences in fracture rates, a significantly reduced rate was found at all fracture sites, with hip fractures reduced by 6%, vertebral fractures reduced by 13%, and all nonvertebral fractures by 9%.”

Calcium — Calcium works synergistically with vitamin K2, magnesium and vitamin D, and needs all three of those to function properly.

Vitamin D aids calcium absorption, while vitamin K2 makes sure the calcium ends up in the right place — your bones and not your arteries. Taking a high-dose calcium supplement while being vitamin K2 deficient can thus lead to hardening of your arteries. The Natural Medicine Journal reports that:27

“To maintain bone health, 1,000–1,500 mg/day of calcium (including food sources and supplements) is recommended (varies with age, weight, sex, etc.) by the National Academy of Sciences.

Sufficient calcium intake is important in preventing osteoporosis, because if the body’s stores of calcium is low, calcium will be leached from bones, which can lead to decreased bone mass and the initiation or worsening of osteoporosis.”

Raw, grass fed yogurt is an excellent calcium source that research has shown can lower your bone loss. Details can be found in “Eat More Yogurt and Avoid Osteoporosis.”

Magnesium — Magnesium works synergistically with calcium, vitamin K2 and vitamin D, and aids calcium absorption. According to the Natural Medicine Journal:28

“Low levels of blood magnesium correlates with low bone density, and several studies have supported the use of oral magnesium supplementation to increase bone density. Even a moderate magnesium deficiency has been documented to cause bone loss in rats.

Magnesium deficiency may impair the production of parathyroid hormone and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, which negatively affects bone mineralization. Supplementing with 250–400 mg a day of magnesium is usually recommended.”

Collagen — Collagen has been shown to strengthen bones29,30 and improve osteoporosis.31
Boron — The highest concentrations of the trace mineral boron are found in bones and tooth enamel. According to the Natural Medicine Journal,32 boron “appears to be indispensable for healthy bone function,” as it reduces excretion of calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. There may also be other, as yet poorly understood, mechanisms by which it benefits bone-building.
Strontium — Another trace mineral that has some similarities to calcium, is also thought to be important for bone formation and bone strength. At present, the only two forms of strontium that have science backing their use are the nonradioactive strontium ranelate (which is not available in supplement form)33 and strontium citrate.

A study34,35 published in 2017 found postmenopausal osteopenic women taking a combination of 5 mg of melatonin, 450 mg of strontium citrate, 60 micrograms of vitamin K2 and 2,000 IUs of vitamin D per day for one year increased their bone density in the lumbar spine by 4.3% compared to placebo. Bone density in the femoral neck increased by 2.2%.

Why Most Resistance Training Is Not Enough

While there’s evidence supporting the notion that moderate- to high-impact resistance training will benefit bone health,36 heavy weightlifting may be unsuitable for the elderly and those with osteoporosis. Low-impact resistance training, aerobic exercise and walking have all been shown to have little or no effect on bone loss.37

The problem with load-bearing exercises is that most simply do not produce sufficient osteogenic load. Research38 suggests the load needed to trigger bone growth in the hip is 4.2 times your bodyweight. Conventional strength training comes nowhere near that.

Just think about that for a moment. If you weigh 150 pounds, that would mean you would have to deadlift more than 600 pounds. Not many 150-pound people I know can deadlift even half that.

Osteogenic Loading — The Key to Strong Bones

However, there is a system called Osteostrong that I am testing that sets up your body in specific positions that allows most to achieve this level of force without risk or injury and has been shown to consistently increase bone density over a year.

Another name for Osteostrong is osteogenic loading therapy,39,40,41 You would need to have access to a training center or clinic that offers it.42 This technology is designed to improve your bone density.

In a 2015 study43 published in the Journal of Osteoporosis & Physical Activity, women diagnosed with osteopenia and osteoporosis (none of whom were on medication for it) who performed osteogenic loading-type resistance training saw a 14.9% increase in the density of the hip bone and a 16.6% increase in the density of the spine after 24 weeks.

Blood Flow Restriction Training May Benefit Your Bones

An alternative that not only appears to have a beneficial effect on bone health, but is also viable for the elderly and those who cannot lift heavy weights is blood flow restriction (BFR) training. BFR is a novel type of biohack that allows you to do strength exercises using just 20% to 30% of the max weight you’d normally be able to lift just once, while still reaping maximum benefits.

It involves performing strength training exercises while restricting venous blood flow return to your heart (but not arterial flow) to the extremity being worked. This is done by wrapping the extremity being worked with a cuff that mildly restricts blood flow.

By forcing blood to remain inside your extremity while it is exercising with light weights, you stimulate metabolic changes in your muscle that result in great improvements in strength with virtually no risk of injury.

While still sparse, some studies also suggest it has an effect on bone metabolism. As noted in a 2018 systematic review of 170 articles looking at BFR’s impact on bone metabolism:44

“… only four studies showed that BFR training increases the expression of bone formation markers (e.g. bone-specific alkaline phosphatase) and decreases bone resorption markers (e.g. the amino-terminal telopeptides of type I collagen) … across several populations.”

A 2012 study, “Blood Flow Restriction: Rationale for Improving Bone,” offered the following hypothesis:45

“The studies completed thus far support the hypothesis that training with blood flow restriction may provide not only a novel modality to induce adaptation in muscle but also bone, which was previously thought to only occur with higher intensity/impact exercise.

We hypothesize that the main mechanism behind the proposed favorable bone responses observed thus far is through increased intramedullary pressure and interstitial fluid flow within the bone caused by venous occlusion.”

For details about how to do BFR, you can review my recently added instructions in our Exercise Guide. You can also review an interview with Jim Stray-Gundersen, a leading proponent and teacher of BFR training in the U.S. I will publish many more interviews, articles, videos and a training guide for BFR in the near future.

Sources and References

From Tomb To Table: Cumin’s Health Benefits Rediscovered

© 20th September 2019 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter
Reproduced from original article:
www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/tomb-table-cumins-health-benefits-rediscovered

Posted on: Sunday, September 22nd 2019 at 8:30 am
Written By:  Sayer Ji, Founder

Traded along spice routes separating ancient cultures by vast distances, spices like cumin were once worth their weight in gold. Has modern science now revealed why, beyond their remarkable aesthetic value, they were so highly prized?

Many spices are perfectly happy living a charmed life as seasonings, peppering things generously with flavor, and without ever arousing the suspicion that they may be capable of profound acts of healing as well.

Meet cumin, a member of the parsley family, which is to say from a well-known family of healers native to the central Mediterranean region (southern Italy, Algeria and Tunisia).

Cumin’s traditional use stretches back into prehistory, as evidenced by its presence in Egyptian tombs.  The Greeks actually used it much like we use pepper today, keeping cumin at the dining table in its own container, which is still practiced by Moroccans to this day.  It is also been used for millennia in India as a traditional ingredient of curry.

An accumulating body of research now indicates that these ancient “culinary” uses, once considered primarily aesthetic in nature, may have served more fundamental medicinal roles in these cultures.  Modern scientific investigation has revealed that cumin has a broad range of potential healing properties that, when properly applied, could profoundly alleviate human suffering by providing natural alternatives to often highly toxic pharmaceutical interventions.

For instance, research published in the journal Food Chemistry and Toxicology demonstrated that cumin has blood sugar lowering properties comparable to the drug glibenclamide (known in the US as glyburide), with the additional benefit (not conferred by pharmaceutical intervention) that it also lowered oxidative stress and inhibited the advanced glycated end products (AGE), which are implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetic microvascular complications.[i]

Remarkably, this is only the tip of cumin’s medicinal potential. There are at least 10 other potential medicinal properties of cumin now confirmed in the experimental literature:

  • Bacterial Infections:  Cumin oil has been shown effective at killing Klebsiella penumoniae bacteria, including decreasing biofilm formation (a defense mechanism of bacteria against antibiotics), as well as enhancing the antimicrobial activity of conventional antibiotic drugs like ciprofloxacin.[ii]  Even more impressive, perhaps, cumin oil has been shown to have anti-MRSA properties.[iii]
  • Candida (Yeast) Infection: Unlike conventional antibiotics which contribute to opportunistic fungal overgrowth, cumin has been shown to have considerable inhibitory activity against 3 different Candida albicans strains of yeast.[iv] It has also been studied to be effective against a wide range of other fungi and yeasts, including Aspergilli and dermatophytes (fungi that cause skin diseases).[v]
  • Cataracts: Cumin has been shown to delay the formation of diabetes-associated cataracts primarily through its anti-glycating properties, i.e. it prevents elevated blood sugar from getting “sticky” (i.e. caramelization) and subsequently damaging tissues in the body.[vi]
  • Cancers: Cumin has been shown in preclinical research to have inhibitory activity against cervical cancer[vii] and colon cancer. [viii]
  • Dental Plaque: Cumin oil has been shown effective as an anti-gingival agent alternative to the chemical chlorhexidine commonly used in mouthwashes.[ix]
  • Diabetes: As mentioned in our opening, cumin has significant anti-diabetic properties. Another 2002 study found that the treatment of diabetic rats with cumin was more effective than the drug glibenclamide, resulting in reductions in inflammation, fatty changes, tissue cholesterol, triglycerides, free fatty acids, blood glucose and glycated hemoglobin – all positive indicators. [x]
  • Food-borne Pathogens – Cumin oil has been found to work synergistically with other food preservation agents to inhibit the growth of food-borne pathogens.[xi]
  • Immune Function: Cumin has been found to effectively stimulate immune function in a way that may benefit immune-compromised individuals.[xii]
  • Fertility (Reversible Contraceptive): Cumin has been found to have potent contraceptive activities in male rats without apparent toxicity.[xiii]
  • Memory Disorders: Cumin has been found to reduce stress-induced oxidative changes in the brain, as well as improving cognition, as determined by acquisition, retention and recovery in rats, in a dose-dependent manner.[xiv]
  • Morphine Dependence/Tolerance: Cumin reduces morphine tolerance and dependence. [xv] [xvi]
  • Osteoporosis: Cumin extract has been shown effective at reversing bone loss associated with the loss of ovarian function at least as well as estradiol.[xvii]
  • Thrombosis (Clot): Cumin seed has been demonstrated to inhibit platelet aggregation, indicating it may prevent pathological blood clotting.[xviii]  [Note: of course this means that it could interact adversely with blood thinners].

The so-called “evidence-based” approach of modern medical science to understanding cumin’s medicinal value is relatively new. Only in the past two decades, but especially in the past ten years, scientific research on spices and culinary herbs has virtually exploded. While enlightening, we must remember that the approach is limited in a number of ways. For one, it relies on animal research, which is both inherently cruel (vivisection) and conveys only approximate data, as these substances often have very different effects in animals than humans.

Also, spices like cumin should not be considered in isolation, as traditional recipes passed down from generation to generation contained a vast storehouse of medically relevant information pertaining to the synergies inherent in combinations of ingredients, modes of preparation, seasonal harvesting, etc. In other words, cumin does not lend itself well to the pharmacological, drug-based model of medicine, which presumes there are monochemical “magic bullets” within complex herbs or spices that must be identified and isolated into megadoses, and which are primarily responsible for their beneficial effects.

Nonetheless, it is welcoming that increasingly science confirms traditional herbalism and culinary practice. Perhaps, as the scientific evidence continues to pour in, we will be more willing to give ourselves permission to appreciate once again the wondrous superfluity of nature, its ceaseless benevolence, and the the fact that issuing directly from her fecund soil, are powerful healing gifts, that we can enjoy sensually, viscerally and now intellectually with greater abandon.


References

  • [iv] Juergen Wanner, Stefanie Bail, Leopold Jirovetz, Gerhard Buchbauer, Erich Schmidt, Velizar Gochev, Tanya Girova, Teodora Atanasova, Albena Stoyanova. Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of cumin oil (Cuminum cyminum, Apiaceae). Nat Prod Commun. 2010 Sep ;5(9):1355-8. PMID: 20922990

Originally published: 2012-12-04

Article published: 2019-09-22

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.