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Nutrition


Milk May Be a Driver of Diabetes
Nutrition
Written by David Seaman, D.C., M.S., D.A.B.C.N., F.A.C.C.   
Wednesday, 26 October 2005 21:42

milkTwo sacred cows of nutrition for the people of the United States have been bread and milk. The low carb craze has heightened the public’s awareness about the dangers associated with refined starches, such as most cereals, breads, and pasta. Many people steer clear of these more refined starches and many even avoid the whole grains.

Whole grains do contain fiber that assists in intestinal peristalsis, and also tends to assist in blood sugar regulation.1  Despite these benefits, whole grains are rich in pro-inflammatory substances, suggesting that we should eat only condiment-sized portions of whole grains. Whole grains contain only the pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids, gliadin, lectins, and they promote tissue acidity.2

The pro-inflammatory nature of all grains is a severe blow to many who crave this starchy food. Nonetheless, in 2004, when we in Florida were hit with four hurricanes, the grocery stores were quickly emptied of their bread supplies. I don’t know what storms do to the minds of people; however, they seem to powerfully influence their food choices. When storms move into town, bread and milk quickly leave the supermarkets.

My perception is that most people continue to view bread and milk as two important staples…and nothing is further from the truth. Humans are designed to eat vegetation (vegetables, fruits, nuts, roots, and tubers) and animals that ate vegetation.  From a historical and evolutionary perspective, grains and dairy are new foods.

Refined grains are known to be unhealthy, while whole grains receive positive reviews—even though they offer many pro-inflammatory possibilities. Unlike whole grains, dairy has received some bad press over the years, as lactose intolerance is not uncommon.  Many have also heard arguments about the likely unhealthy nature of processed milk, or that casein, the milk protein, is not an ideal protein source.  And there is evidence suggesting that early introduction of milk to children can promote allergies.3

While the jury is still out, recent evidence suggests that milk consumption may be risky, particularly for those over the age of 30 who are moving toward developing syndrome X—a prediabetic state that is thought to promote diabetes and its many related diseases, such as cancer and heart disease. In part, syndrome X is characterized by hyperinsulinemia, which can be greatly influenced by diet. Most readers are familiar with the glycemic index (GI), which basically refers to the blood sugar response after a food is ingested. The higher the index, the greater the blood sugar response. A low GI would be 55 or less, a medium GI is considered to be 56-69, and high GI is 70 or more. Typically, the insulin response is commensurate to the GI, which means our goal should be to eat foods with a low glycemic index. Visit www.glycemicindex.com for a listing of GI’s for most foods.

Foods such as fruits, vegetables, animal products, and dairy have a low glycemic index, compared with refined foods and certain whole grain products. Skim and whole milk have a GI of about 30, which is low and desirable. However, it seems that the milk’s low GI is betrayed by a high insulin response.

Researchers found that the insulinemic response to milk is similar to that of white bread, which has a high glycemic index. In short, milk promotes an insulin response that is three to six times greater than would be expected based on the GI of milk.4 Of dairy products, only cheese has a low insulinemic response: 45 for cheese, compared to 145 for whole and skim milk.5

It seems possible that our reliance on milk as a staple food may play a role in the development of syndrome X and diabetes. Caution should be exercised when consuming milk and milk products until more is known.

Dr. Seaman is the Clinical Chiropractic Consultant for Anabolic Laboratories, one of the first supplement manufacturers to service the chiropractic profession.  He is on the postgraduate faculties of several chiropractic colleges, providing nutrition seminars that focus on the needs of the chiropractic patient.  Dr. Seaman can be reached by e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

References

1. Pereira MA et al. Effect of whole grains on insulin sensitivity in overweight hyperinsulinemic adults. Am J Clin Nutr 2004; Am J Clin Nutr 2002;75:848–855
2. Cordain L. Cereal grains: humanity’s double-edged sword. World Rev Nutr Diet 1999; 84:19-73
3. Iacono G, Cavataio F, Montalto G, Soresi M, Notarbartolo A, Carroccio A. Persistent cow’s milk protein intolerance in infants: the changing faces of the same disease. Clin Exp Allergy. 199; 28:817-23
4. Ostman EM, Elmstahl H, Bjorck I. Inconsistency between glycemic and insulinemic responses to regular and fermeted milk products. Am J Clin Nutr 2001; 74:96-100
5. Hoyt G, Hickey Ms, Cordain L. Dissociation of the glycemic and insulinemic responses to whole and skimmed milk. Brit J Nutr 2005; 93:175-77

 
Battling the Bulge is a War Against Inflammation
Nutrition
Written by David Seaman, D.C., M.S., D.A.B.C.N., F.A.C.C.   
Friday, 26 August 2005 19:31

overweightIn the Beginning…

As a youth, I was one of the many who could not gain weight if he tried. My goal was to gain lean mass; however, I couldn’t even gain body fat back in the high school days. I was very skinny, and being so light was not helpful for my efforts to play baseball and basketball in high school. With a high center of gravity and not much body weight for my height, my body was not really designed for these semi-contact sports; it did not take much of a shove for me to go flying…which is why I took up high jumping. Being light and skinny was plus in high jumping.

Then…

Some 25 years later, I am no longer high jumping, or playing baseball and basketball. The worries of not gaining weight are no longer an issue. Well, that is not exactly true. If I am not careful now, I can easily gain body fat… gaining lean mass is a bit more difficult.

So, in my mid-forties, my situation has reversed. Now I wish to keep weight off; that is, fat weight, of course. Granted, due to my small bone structure and tall height, I can maintain an appearance of leanness; however, this also means that 5 pounds of body fat for me can be the equivalent of 10-20 pounds of fat for those with larger frames. So, my fatness situation is really no different than that of someone who is more obviously overweight.

Why We Need to Battle the Bulge

In our youth, gaining muscle mass and/or dropping fat mass is really more of a vanity thing for most people. As adults, we should view reducing fat mass as a major health concern. We now know that extra fat mass represents a reservoir of chronic inflammation. Space constraints do not permit a review of the biochemical mediators released by adipose tissue; however, here is a list of some of the mediators released in high amounts as fat mass increases: plasminogen activator inhibitor, angiotensinogen, resistin, leptin, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and tumor necrosis factor (TNF); and there is reduced release of an anti-inflammatory substance called adiponectin.1,2

We should be aware that visceral adipose tissue releases 2-3 times more IL-6 compared to subcutaneous adipose tissue.1 The liver responds to IL-6 by releasing C-reactive protein, which is thought to be a sensitive marker for cardiovascular disease4 and, likely, other inflammation-driven conditions such as cancer.5

Inflamed Bulge

From a practical perspective, if our body mass index is above normal, we are likely to have a problem with inflammation. If we can grab too much fat around our waists, we are likely to have a problem with inflammation. Is your waistline bigger than when you were in college? If yes, you are likely to be inflamed…and you may have no symptoms, which is a bit scary. It is likely that we can have subclinical, chronic inflammation for years, and not know it until a disease, like cancer or heart disease, strikes us down.

Some Tips for Losing Bulge

The fix for this adiposity-driven inflammation is straightforward. We must eat less, and exercise more… what a shocker. In particular, we have to fight off eating late at night; this is the deathblow for most of us. Every night, I battle the desire to eat, which is often associated with a surprising lack of hunger.

For meals, focus on fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fish, nuts; and, if you desire, a starchy carbohydrate, have a red or sweet potato.  Avoid all trans fats. For sautéing foods, use coconut oil; and for salad dressing, use extra virgin olive oil. Butter can also be consumed in moderation without fear.

Eat until you start to feel less hungry or slightly full, then stop eating. You will find that you will begin to eat less food. And, when we eat less, there is a chance to reduce important fiber and nutrient intake; there is almost no way around this. In short, we are not designed to be sedentary. We are supposed to be active all day and, therefore, burning extra calories all day, which means we should be eating more. However, because we are sedentary, we need to eat less. To make up for the lack of calorie/nutrient intake, I suggest that we all take a fiber supplement, such as psyllium, and also supplement a multivitamin/mineral, magnesium, EPA/DHA, coenzyme Q10, and anti-inflammatory botanicals, such as ginger, turmeric, and garlic.

Dr. Seaman is the Clinical Chiropractic Consultant for Anabolic Laboratories, one of the first supplement manufacturers to service the chiropractic profession. He is on the postgraduate faculties of several chiropractic colleges, providing nutrition seminars that focus on the needs of the chiropractic patient. Dr. Seaman can be reached by e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

References

1. Axelsson J, Heimburger O, Lindholm B, Stenvinkel P. Adipose tissue and its relation to inflammation: The role of adipokines. J Ren Nutr 2005; 15(1):131-6
2. Lyon CJ, Law RE, Hsueh WA. Minireview: adiposity, inflammation, and atherogenesis. Endocrinology. 2003; 144(6):2195-200
3. Das UN. Is obesity an inflammatory condition? Nutrition 2001; 17:953-66
4. Yudkin JS, et al. C-reactive protein in healthy subjects: associations with obesity, insulin resistance, and endothelial dysfunction. Art Thromb Vas Biol 1999; 19:972-78
5. Wieland A, Kerbl R, Berghold A, Schwinger W, Mann G, Urban C. C-reactive protein (CRP) as tumor marker in pediatric and adolescent patients with Hodgkin disease. Med Pediatr Oncol  2003; 41(1):21-5.

 
Nine Powerful Supplements to Reverse Heart Disease
Nutrition
Written by Ronald J. Grisanti, D.C.   
Friday, 26 August 2005 19:29

Half of your patients are going to die of heart attacks and strokes; half your family members are going to die of heart attacks or strokes; you, if you can reduce yourself to a statistic for a moment, stand a 50 percent chance of dying of a heart attack or a stroke. Despite the "progress" of medical science over the last two decades, 50 percent of all Americans still die of cardiovascular disease. The good news for us is that there are ways to correct the causes of cardiovascular disease nutritionally. Here is a quick summary of nine of the most powerful nutritional weapons to protect you and your patients against heart disease.

 

Carnosine

Carnosine has been shown to increase the strength of heart contractility and improve circulation.

In humans, carnosine levels decline with age. Muscle carnosine concentration decreases 63 percent from age 10 to age 70.

 

Betaine

Research has shown that betaine, when combined with just very small amounts of vitamin B6 and folic acid, will lower elevated homocysteine levels, a major factor in heart disease.

 

Carnitine

Carnitine has significant beneficial effects on myocardial energy production. Found to strengthen the heart muscle, it is one of the most effective ways to lower elevated triglycerides and protect myocardial infarct patients against cardiac necrosis. It improves fat metabolism in the heart (as well as other organs) and decreases lipid peroxides in the heart. In addition, it improves heart muscle exercise tolerance, decreases angina pain, is a vasodilator of coronary blood vessels, lowers blood pressure, decreases the elevated LDH levels in myocardial infarct patients, decreases left ventricle enlargement, decreases the incidence of arrhythmias, including the occurrence of ventricular fibrillation in the early stages of ischemia, decreases peripheral vascular disease, decreases congestive heart failure and has a dramatic impact on decreasing triglycerides. It also decreases elevated cholesterol as well, but has a far greater effect on triglycerides. Carnitine also increases high density lipoproteins.

 

Co-enzyme Q-10

Co-Q10 is a powerful anti-oxidant that participates in several of the anti-oxidant systems. The benefits of Co-Enzyme Q-10 have been found to

• Prevent myocardial failure;

• Energize and protect the heart, while protecting against atherosclerosis;

• Improve cardiac response to exercise;

• Lower high blood pressure;

• Reduce angina;

• Prevent arrythmias;

• Quench free radicals.

 

Vitamin E (mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols)

The mixed tocopherols represent the complete vitamin E family—alpha, beta, gamma, and delta tocopherols. Unfortunately, most people think of vitamin E primarily as alpha tocopherol, or as one of the alpha tocopherol esters. As it turns out, what most people consider to be vitamin E (alpha tocopherol) is not really such a great antioxidant. Its antioxidant activity is positively dwarfed by the antioxidant activity of gamma tocopherol, particularly, and the other tocopherols as well. The point is that, when you want an antioxidant that will put up a good fight with oxidative stressors, you don’t fool around with the form of vitamin E they put in vitamin pills (alpha tocopherol).

What you want are the mixed tocopherols. This is not to say that alpha tocopherol is bad. Quite the contrary. One form of alpha tocopherol, the ester alpha tocopheryl succinate, is more effective in its role as an anti-thrombic agent than any of the other tocopherols, and is more effective in boosting immune function.

 

Glucosamine

Glucosamine is MORE than a supplement for arthritis. The truth is, there have been dozens of scientific studies showing the benefits of glucosamine supplementation on cardiovascular health. First, consider glucosamine. The nutrition establishment would have you think of this substance as nothing more than a raw material that forms a critical structural component of cartilage and other connective tissue.

The late Emanuel Revici’s research revealed that glucosamine does not just strengthen connective tissue in a structural sense, but it strengthens by protecting connective tissues against inflammation and maintains the structural integrity of arterial basement membranes.

 

Chondroitin Sulfate

Far more important than its role in the connective tissue of joints is the power of chondroitin sulfate to maintain the functional integrity of the cardiovascular system. CS helps maintain arterial elasticity. Remember, arteries are largely connective tissue. CS retards the arteriosclerotic and aging processes within the arterial wall. CS also possesses lipid-clearing activity. It lowers cholesterol and triglycerides, and it normalizes the ratio between HDL, LDL, and VLDL. Most importantly, CS clears lipids, not just in the serum, but from within the cells as well.

The most striking statistic regarding CS supplementation shows that, in cardiovascular disease patients treated with CS, the likelihood of having a myocardial infarct, suffering coronary insufficiency or myocardial ischemia, or developing congestive heart failure is only 1/6th that reported for control patients who receive no CS supplementation.

 

Alpha Lipoic Acid

Alpha lipoic acid is a SUPER POWER antioxidant. Lipoic acid particularly decreases elevated systolic blood pressure, decreases excess cellular calcium, and decreases elevated serum glucose and elevated serum insulin. Lipoic acid also decreases adverse renal vascular changes associated with hypertension. Lipoic acid effectively decreases LDL cholesterol. Lipoic acid has been shown, in clinical studies, to decrease elevated triglycerides by as much as 45 percent. If there is one thing you can do for your patients to protect them from the grips of heart disease, tell them about the nine most powerful supplements listed above. You just may save a life (or two).

 

Ronald Grisanti, DC, DABCO, MS, is a board-certified chiropractic orthopedist with a master’s degree in nutritional science. He has created an innovative Web-based program in developing a nutritional, functional medicine-based practice called Chiropractic Mentors.

He can be reached by e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or through his Web site, www.chiropracticmentors.com.

 
Why High Cholesterol, by Itself, is Not a Good Indicator of Heart Disease
Nutrition
Written by Dr. James P. Cima, D.C.   
Friday, 26 August 2005 19:26

Whenever I run a blood test on any patient, the first thing they all want to know is, "Doc, how is my cholesterol?" They think, because their cholesterol levels are normal, they have nothing to worry about. Unfortunately, they do not know that about 50 percent of patients who die from cardiovascular disease have "normal cholesterol levels". They also do not realize that there are people, who have very high cholesterol levels that do not suffer from heart disease.

The drug industry has done such a fantastic job of brain washing the public about high cholesterol, statin drugs and heart disease that people think they are safe, if their cholesterol levels are normal. Since a high cholesterol level does not mean that you will have cardiovascular disease and a low cholesterol level does not mean that you are going to die from cardiovascular disease, what other lab tests are there to determine the risk of this number one killer?

Well, first off, the only way cholesterol can create plaque build up on the endothelial blood vessel wall is if it has been inflamed and scarred first. Without any inflammation, scarring or necrosis of the endothelium, the environment does not favor plaque build up.

The process of inflammation is divided into three phases:

• Phase 1—"acute inflammatory"

• Phase 2—"repair"

• Phase 3—"remodeling"

If all three phases take place, you have healing; if not, you have continued damage to the blood vessel wall.

We must now ask ourselves, "What causes inflammation to continue?"

Causes of Continued Inflammation

 

• Constant physical trauma to the blood vessels themselves;

• Constant systemic bacterial and viral infections;

• Diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma;

• Cancer and autoimmune deficiencies;

• Improper dietary conditions, such as:

- High levels of arachidonic acid (highly inflammatory) found in meat and dairy, which causes pain, thrombosis and vasoconstriction;

- Minerals such as fluorine and chlorine, which literally act like razor blades cutting, inflaming and scarring the endothelium of the blood vessel;

- High amounts of free radicals circulating in the blood stream from the foods we eat;

- Free radicals produced from cellular metabolism, such as superoxide anion radical, hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radicals, etc.

Additional Blood Tests that Help Assess Inflammation

There are two other tests that I consider just as important or more important than cholesterol, since they can determine if inflammation is involved: Homocysteine levels and C-reactive protein.

Homocysteine is an amino acid produced through the demethylation of methionine (an antioxidant) into cysteine. High amounts of homocysteine (homocysteinemia) levels may indicate:

• Increased risk of vascular disease and venous thrombosis due to a direct toxic effect that it has on the endothelium;

• B12 or folic acid deficiency, which prevents methionine from being converted into cysteine;

• Reduced renal function (homocysteinuria).

Normal values for an adult are 4-17 umol/l or .54-2.30mg/l.

C-Reactive Protein is, normally, not found in blood, but appears and rises rapidly where there is tissue necrosis. CRP reacts with many other substances (acts as a scavenger) for DNA nucleotides, lipids and polysaccharides. This is why it elevates due to its role in inflammation during atherogenesis.

CRP is also elevated in bacterial infections, rheumatic fever, rheumatoid arthritis, trauma, neoplastic proliferations, and auto-immune diseases.

Normal values for an adult are between 470-1340 ng/ml.

As you can see, with the aid of these two additional tests, you can determine, with greater accuracy, the cardiovascular risk that you or your patient may be facing.

For more information on Dr. Cima and the many books he has written, you may visit his web site at www.cimasystem.com or call 877-627-2770.

 

 
The Five-minute Stress Evaluation
Nutrition
Written by Dr. Howard F. Loomis, D.C.   
Friday, 26 August 2005 19:24

Stress as a Specific Diagnosis

Stress provokes a very exact physiological response by the body. Unfortunately, the term "stress" is so commonly used, it seems to have lost significance as a specific diagnosis. Everyone in our modern, fast-paced society seems to be "uptight" because life is so stressful. But, as clinicians, we should never lose sight of the fact that the body responds to all types of stress in a very specific manner. In this article, I will outline the exact physiological cascade found in the body’s response to stress and how you can determine what is producing the symptoms that bring patients to your office. This examination is physiologically and neurologically sound and can be completed in less than five minutes.

 

When can we diagnose stress?

Stress can result from a structural, nutritional, or emotional source. However, regardless of the source, the body will react in a physiologically identical manner. That being true, it behooves us to know what the response should be, since failure to respond appropriately will result in symptoms. Determining the cause of symptoms should be the goal of all clinicians. Most disease processes begin with the same vague and undistinguished symptoms. Only after they became full-blown disease processes can they be identified and precise medical treatment protocols initiated.

This is the point: Medicine must wait for the identification of a specific disease entity to be certain of treatment. Any other attempts at treatment are subject to guesswork and certain to fail, with the added possibility of side effects. Knowledgeable chiropractors, because of their education and ability to palpate and examine, can recognize the deleterious effects of stress and determine exactly where, in its physiological response, the body is failing to meet the increased demands being placed on it.

Treating Stress

Once this is determined, the solution becomes obvious and treatment is specific. Results are quite predictable and improvement easy to track. Imagine a practice based on the following paradigm:

• Treat one condition (stress), recognize its cause and make recommendations to reduce or eliminate it entirely.

• Take whatever therapeutic steps are necessary to relieve symptoms and restore normal function,

• Make nutritional recommendations so the body can heal itself.

It is a plan that you can make work repeatedly. It will not only be quite effective for your patients, but it will also reward you, both professionally and personally.

 

Recognizing Stress Factors

As living, breathing human beings, we do not go directly from health to disease. There is a large gray area between the two extremes. Health is also much more than the absence of symptoms. Our goal should not be to treat disease but to prevent it. To accomplish this, you must know what is "normal" and be able to see, not just deviations from normal, but also to recognize what stresses are challenging the body to remain within normal limits. Only if you can recognize and reduce—or even eliminate—the major stresses on a specific body can you say you truly specialize in preventing disease.

Howard F. Loomis, Jr., DC, President of Enzyme Formulations®, Inc., has an extensive background in enzymes and enzyme supplementation. As president for fifteen years of 21st Century Nutrition® (now the Loomis Institute® of Enzyme Nutrition), he has forged a remarkable career as an educator, having conducted over 400 seminars to date, in the United States and internationally, on the diagnosis and treatment of food enzyme deficiency syndromes. Call 800-662-2630 for more information and a free video.

 
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