Health, Myths, Fraud and the Crisis

Archive for the ‘Vitamins & Supplements’ Category

How I (hopefully) got rid of my chronic Sinusitis

Since I heard some acquaintances are fighting with the same problem here a follow-up on an earlier post:

Unfortunately I still was suffering from my a draining sinus until about 4  weeks ago. It was so bad that it even caused a gullet inflammation.

A friend of mine recommended me a homoeopathic sinusitis remedy containing a substance called Luffa operculata. I was told to take 20 drops every 2 h and I must say it helped almost immediately, but as soon as I stopped the drain came back. She said I must carry on a little longer and I did, with the same result.

Then I thought it might be a virus infection and remembered that L-Lysine helped me before with virus infections. So I took 1000 mg L-Lysine a day and in addition a supplement against joint inflammation, containing MSM Chondroitin sulphate and Glucosamine.

I know it might be just a placebo effect, but am almost free of any symptoms for three weeks now …

Fluoride Can Competitively Inhibit Iodine Absorption

The major endocrine glands of the body. Pituit...

Image via Wikipedia

Radiation levels might rise worldwide. Iodine is essential for a healthy thyroid gland and stored by our body to a large extent in this gland. Radioactive fall out from the reactor disaster in Japan will result in higher radiation levels in our food and the iodine it contains. Iodine tablets ( potassium iodide ) can protect the thyroid gland from radioactive iodine. Against this background this information might become even more important.  Fluoride and bromide, having a similar structure as iodine, can competitively inhibit iodine absorption.

Most people in the West are highly deficient in iodine, and this can have negative effects on immune system function, hormonal sensitivity throughout the body and thyroid function. Moreover, in the US are apparently brominated soft drinks on the market, which have been banned in Europe. Taking the iodine tablets shortly before or virtually simultaneously to being exposed to radioactive iodine offers the most effective protection of the thyroid gland.

Foods containing iodine:

Iodized salt

Seaweed ( Kelp )

Saltwater fish, seafood

Eggs, depending on feed

Seasalt contains negible amounts of iodine.

As an aside, because its so popular : Himalaya salt ( rock salt ) contains no iodine, but sometimes gypsum … from Wikipedia :

In 2003 the Bavarian consumer protection agency Bayerisches Landesamt für Gesundheit und Lebensmittelsicherheit analyzed 15 specimens of Himalaya salt sold in Germany and could detect a total of 10 different minerals: sodium and chloride (98%) and other minerals. This agency states that these salts come from Pakistan and can, like all salts, cause hypertension (high blood pressure).[1] German public television broadcaster ZDF presented the analyzed chemical composition of Himalaya-salt which states that the specimen contained 95-96% sodium chloride that was contaminated with 2-3% polyhalite (gypsum) and small amounts of 10 other different minerals.


Brownstein “However, once bromide is absorbed, it binds tightly to the iodine receptors in the body.  In addition, bromine can bind to the transport cells for iodine (sodium-iodide symporter–NIS) and damage the transporter cells.  The oxidized form of bromide–bromine–is stored in the fat tissues.  Taking iodine in physiologic doses can help to competitively inhibit the binding of bromine.  Also, iodine supplementation allows the body to detoxify itself from bromine, while retaining iodine.

The Critical Importance of Dietary Iodine (Jan. 2006) – Natural …

Bromide and fluoride, both toxic minerals, interfere with iodine absorption and promote goiters. Over the past 20 years, widespread contamination with …

Thyroid History

Destroy prostate cancer with vitamin E

Dr Allen Spreen
NorthStar Nutritionals

Scientists from Australia found that vitamin E might play a major role in hampering the development and re-growth of prostate cancer tumours. For the study, Dr Patrick Ling and a team of researchers injected mice with prostate cancer cells. Then, they divided the mice into two groups. They fed one group of mice water fortified with a form of vitamin E called gamma-tocotrienol or y-T3. The other group of mice drank regular water.

Researchers found that 70% of the vitamin E mice never went on to develop prostate cancer tumours, despite being injected with malignant cells. And, yes, the remaining 30% developed prostate cancer. But following surgery, their tumours were far less likely to re-grow or metastaside. On the other hand, tumours formed in 100% of the control group of mice not given vitamin E.


Brittle Bones and Hardened Arteries

From an article by Julius Goepp, M.D. in Life Extension, Sept. 2010 :

The cells lining your arteries (endothelial cells) can turn into bone cells as you age. Known as osteoblasts, these cells normally regulate bone formation. The unexpected discovery of osteoblasts in the endothelial lining of individuals with arterial disease was made in 1993.4 It marked a major advance in our understanding of vascular and bone disease. This finding uncovered a previously unknown link between atherosclerosis, which involves calcification of vascular tissue, and osteoporosis, which involves the decalcification of bone tissue.

… Cutting-edge research points to the central role of two key nutrients to ensure optimal calcification of your bones while preventing pathologic calcification of your arteries: vitamins D and K.


Efficacy of oral supplementation of L-arginine to enhance Nitric oxide synthesis

L-arginine is widely touted and promoted as a supplement for enhancing blood flow and nutrient delivery. So I got curious whether its just about money or true. That is what I found :

Our body converts L-arginine into Nitric oxide (NO).  NO is a ubiquitous mediator that is formed by a family of enzymes named NO synthases. In the brain, NO acts as a neurotransmitter; in the immune system NO acts as a mediator of host defense; and in the cardiovascular system, NO mediates the protective effects of the intact  endothelium (inhibits adhesion of blood platelets), acting as a vasodilator.

Scientific studies have shown that NO significantly reduces blood pressure levels. NO also enhances health in a number of other ways. It improves immune function, stimulates the release of human growth hormone (HGH), promotes healthy sexual function (since it stimulates production of an enzyme that leads to smooth muscle relaxation of the arteries), may boost energy levels, helps to build muscle, and may reduces adipose tissue body fat. However most studies I could find do not support the claims of the supplement industry regarding oral supplementation of L-arginine.

Arginine is the precursor for nitric oxide leading to the supposition that oral supplementation can serve as a potent nitric oxide stimulator. This position is also based on the findings that significant increases of blood serum arginine levels induce significant levels of vasodilation in healthy persons when fasting (12).

However, such blood levels of arginine require direct infusion as high oral doses generally are not tolerated. In fact, oral dosages as low as 10 grams per day have been associated with significant gastric distress (16).

A substantial body of research dating back to the 1990’s, demonstrates that oral feeding of arginine is ineffective for increasing nitric oxide production, as compared to intravenous infusion, which is largely impractical.


Efficacy and safety of oral l-arginine in acute myocardial infarction CONCLUSIONS: This study, which is the first attempt to use L-arginine in MI, showed that oral L-arginine supplementation was well tolerated. Beneficial nonsignificant trend was observed towards reduction of major clinical events.

CONCLUSIONS: Endothelial dysfunction was apparent in patients with heart failure despite rigorous vasoactive treatment. Oral administration with l-arginine was ineffective in influencing endothelial function in these patients.

Conclusions— In patients with PAD (peripheral arterial disease), long-term administration of L-arginine does not increase nitric oxide synthesis or improve vascular reactivity. Furthermore, the expected placebo effect observed in studies of functional capacity was attenuated in the L-arginine-treated group. As opposed to its short-term administration, long-term administration of L-arginine is not useful in patients with intermittent claudication and PAD.

Abstract: … Nonetheless, intravenous or dietary (oral) administration of relatively large doses of L-arginine has been shown to result in enhanced NO formation in subjects with impaired endothelial function at baseline. In several controlled clinical trials, long-term administration of L-arginine has been shown to improve the symptoms of cardiovascular disease. However, in other trials L-arginine was not beneficial, and in a recent study, the authors reported higher mortality of subjects receiving L-arginine than those receiving placebo.


Supplements could help protect your sight

Age-related macular degeneration or ARMD is the leading cause of vision loss and blindness for those 65 and older. Now a recent study is providing some hope, along with a protocol that may halt or slow ARMD’s progression. The study, which appears in the Archives of Ophthalmology, shows a regular supplement programme including antioxidants and zinc (500mg vitamin C, 400IU of vitamin E, 15mg beta carotene, 80mg of zinc oxide and 2mg of cupric oxide); could reduce the progression of AMD by as much as 25%. The study specifically monitored people who already showed signs of ARMD and found evidence that this combination of supplements could stop or slow the path of this disease.

Another sleepless night from MSG (Monosodium Glutamate)

Usually I have no sleeping problems. Sometimes I am taking some Melatonin if I like to get up earlier. It took me a long time to find out why I suffered in some nights  severe insomnia. Since I had avoided sauces, soups etc. in restaurants it had not happened for about 2 years, but this night I clearly had the symptoms again, although very tired I just couldnt fall asleep and Melatonin did not help. Laying in bed totally awake it hit me –  may be it was this delicious  Georgian Chicken we prepared yesterday. And as it turned out, the spice Irina had been using contained MSG.

Hidden Names for MSG and European numbers for glutamate containing additives

Neurological Effect of MSG

  • It is possible that certain neurological diseases can be caused by the ingestion of MSG. According to, “MSG has been linked to many conditions including migraines, asthma, depression and Alzheimer’s … .” However, the FDA mentions that when fed to rats only in large quantities did it cause these problems. What most people are not aware of is that there are chances that they are consuming large quantities because of the many food products that contain MSG.

Protecting your Neurons

  • In an effort to determine whether vitamin E protects the negative effects of MSG on the neurons, a study titled “The Preventive Effort of Vitamin E on The Neurological Toxicity” by the Journal of Islamic Academy of Sciences found that vitamin E has proven to protect the negative effects of MSG on the nervous system. The study involved 100 day-old chicks. All were injected with MSG. One group was given vitamin E 24 hours prior to their injection of MSG. All but this group developed neurological symptoms and died quickly. The group that was given vitamin E 24 hours prior suffered no ill effects.

The absorption of vitamin E is influenced by the amount of fat in a meal

Yvonne M. Jeanesa1, Wendy L. Halla1, Susan Ellarda1, Elizabeth Leea1 and John K. Lodgea1 c1

a1 Centre for Nutrition and Food Safety, School of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XH, UK


Natural Vs. Synthetic Vitamins

Biological Activity Reduced 50%

Proponents of synthetic vitamins might claim natural and synthetic are equally effective; but when it comes to Vitamin E, that natural form is internationally recognized to be more biologically active than the synthetic form. The biological activity is reduced by 50%, even to 70% in synthetic form.

Doubt has also been cast on other synthetic vitamins and their biological activity by Isobel Jennings of Cambridge University. “The synthetic vitamins may be identical with naturally occurring substances or closely related. The close relations, althought useful in many ways, pose some problems in that they may have only a fraction, whether large or small, of the biological activity of the natural products … Synthetic vitamins may perform some of the functions of their natural counterparts while being useless for others. But what may be more important is the fact that synthetic vitamins, prepared from chemicals instead of nature, are frequently less active biologically than their natural counterparts, thereby reducing any beneficial effect they may have.”

Lower Cholesterol with Red Rice Yeast

Since statins were causing me muscle pain (  and since the heart is also a muscle … ) I was looking for something else to lower my high LDL. Fish oil appears to help, but more potent seems to be red rice yeast extract. So far I got no muscle pain. Blood test pending ….

From a Mayo Clinic web page :

Red yeast rice is the product of yeast ( Monascus purpureus ) grown on rice, and is served as a dietary staple in some Asian countries. It contains several compounds collectively known as monacolins, substances known to inhibit cholesterol synthesis. One of these, “monacolin K,” is a potent inhibitor of HMG-CoA reductase, and is also known as mevinolin or lovastatin (Mevacor®, a drug produced by Merck & Co., Inc). Red yeast rice extract has been sold as a natural cholesterol-lowering agent in over the counter supplements, such as Cholestin TM (Pharmanex, Inc).

Coenzyme Q10

It appears to me that Q10 is not as important as the supplement manufacturers suggest it is :

  • Coenzyme Q10 is a fat-soluble compound primarily synthesized by the body and also consumed in the diet.
  • Endogenous synthesis and dietary intake appear to provide sufficient coenzyme Q10 to prevent deficiency in healthy people. (More information)
  • Oral supplementation of coenzyme Q10 increases plasma, lipoprotein, and blood vessel levels, but it is unclear whether tissue coenzyme Q10 levels are increased, especially in healthy individuals. (More information)

Choline – an essential nutrient

Choline is considered an essential nutrient, because even healthy individuals cannot synthesize enough to maintain health.

From the Linus Pauling Institute :

The main criterion for establishing the Adequate Intake level for choline was the prevention of liver damage (see Deficiency).

Food sources

Very little information is available on the choline content of foods (4). Most choline in foods is found in the form of phosphatidylcholine. Milk, eggs, liver, and peanuts are especially rich in choline.

Strict vegetarians who consume no milk or eggs may be at risk of inadequate choline intake.

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