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Thanks for visiting! My goal here is to discuss the latest scientific research to separate the good from all that "guff" in nutritional sciences and all aspects of human health. Because the more you Know, well...the more you Know!

Looking for a specific post? You can browse the Most Read Posts, the Blog Archives, or use the Search function in top left of this page. Thanks for your support and stay healthy!

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2012-08-31

Vitamin D Rejuvenates Aging Eyes by Clearing Amyloid Beta

While the results of this new study may not give you enough time to improve your vision to see tonight's blue moon, it does provide some promising insights into vitamin D's roll in eye health.

In this study, vitamin D3 reduced the accumulation of amyloid beta. I've talked about amyloid beta in other posts on Alzheimer's disease, and interestingly, in April I discussed a study showing vitamin D3 may remove amyloid beta in Alzheimer's patients (it was just an in vitro study, so don't get too excited...although this study gives more weight for D3 against amyloid beta).

2012-08-30

Olive Oil for Blood Vessel Health

It's been almost 2 weeks since I've posted and discussed a new study, so I know you're starving for nutrition research. Well, here's a quick appetizer...

In a double-blind, randomized trial enrolling 82 patients with early atherosclerosis (52 completed study), researchers found that consuming olive oil (OO) improved endothelial function and reduced inflammation.

In this 4-month study, subjects received either a daily intake of 30 mL of OO alone, or 30 mL of OO enriched with epigallocatechin 3-gallate (EGCG). Results found that OO alone improved endothelial function and reduced inflammatory parameters. Since there were no significant differences in results between the two groups, the results indicate OO was responsible for the health benefits, and its intake may improve endothelial dysfunction in patients with early atherosclerosis.

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Source: Beneficial effects of polyphenol-rich olive oil in patients with early atherosclerosis

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2012-08-17

C-Sections May Have Negative Brain Health Consequences

A new study on mice has given more evidence against the use of elective Ceasarian section (C-section) that has become popular in recent years. Subscribers to this blog may remember me recently discussing a study linking C-sections to increased risk of obesity. This new study shows it could have a lasting negative effect on the brain as well.

In this study, mice born by a vaginal birth produced normal amounts of a brain protein called uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2). This is a protein found in the mitochondria (the energy-producing parts of the cell), and is involved in regulation of fuel utilization, cell proliferation, neuroprotection (protection of nerve cells), and synaptogenesis (formation of nerve-to-nerve connections) in the adult brain. These aspects are important for the development of the hippocampus, an area responsible for short- and long-term memory. Its production is induced by cellular stress.

2012-08-15

B12 Improves Treatment of Hepatitis C

Before I get to today's study for discussion, please check out the generous offer from True Blue Spirit I just posted under the Ads section to the right. This is a subscription/paid site, but if you click on the ad, you'll be taken to a special page for a free 2-year subscription. This is an excellent meta-physical magazine I'm sure many of you will enjoy.

Now for the study...this one looked at the effect of adding vitamin B12 to standard antiviral treatment for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Approximately 60-80% of HCV-infected people around the world develop chronic hepatitis, and about 30% of those patients go on to develop cirrhosis and end-stage liver disease.

2012-08-13

Gut Bacteria During Pregnancy Mimics Metabolic Syndrome

A new study adding to the knowledge bank on our microbiome shows that the composition of microbes in the gut changes dramatically during pregnancy.

Several previous studies suggest a role for gut bacteria in driving metabolic disease, including inflammation, weight gain, and reduced insulin sensitivity. While a comprehensive understanding of how microbial diversity changes over the course of normal pregnancy is lacking, during pregnancy, bacterial load is reported to increase.

In the current study researchers obtained stool samples from 91 pregnant women. They found that gut microbes changed in composition from the first trimester to the third trimester, becoming less "normal" and less diverse over time. According to the researchers, health-promoting bacteria decreased in abundance, and disease-related bacteria increased in number (with a corresponding increase in signs of inflammation).

2012-08-10

Marijuana Extract Provides Relief for Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is associated with chronic symptoms, including muscle stiffness, spasms, pain and insomnia.

Effective treatments are limited for both symptom relief and for slowing/halting the progression of the condition.

However, there is hope with medical use of marijuana, with the evidence behind using cannabinoids for symptom relief being quite strong now. This new study, called the MUSEC study, is more evidence supporting that view--and likely one of the strongest studies to date.

279 patients with stable MS at 22 centres in the UK were randomised to receive either an oral cannabis extract (CE) or placebo. This double blind, placebo controlled, phase III study had a screening period, a 2-week dose titration phase of increasing amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and a 10-week maintenance phase. The primary endpoints measured were a category rating scale (CRS) measuring patient-reported change in muscle stiffness from baseline. Further CRSs assessed body pain, spasms and sleep quality. Three validated MS-specific patient reported outcome measures assessed aspects of spasticity, physical and psychological impact, and walking ability.

2012-08-08

Common "Butter Flavour" Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

I'm probably preaching to the converted here, since my impression is that those reading this research blog are mostly eating all-natural, if not organic, but here's a new study to help motivate you to stay on that path...or forward this article to friends and family who still eat a diet full of synthetic chemicals.

Diacetyl (DA) is a popular flavourant used in countless food products including microwave popcorn, margarines, snack foods, sweets, baked goods, pet foods, and certain alcoholic beverages. It is known for its distinctive buttery taste and aroma, but also for its negative health effects. Previous studies have linked occupational exposure to this chemical (for example, the workers at these microwave popcorn factories) with the debilitating lung disease called bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome, and others.

2012-08-01

Ubiquinol Improves Semen for Infertile Men

Recently, as a joke, I sent a friend a text message with an R-rated (maybe a risque 18A-rated) picture of adults in a suggestive position (yeah, I know, juvenile right?). The context in which it was sent doesn't matter...it was just bad timing, as the text was delivered as his 8 and 6 year old sons were playing on his iPhone.

Then, as I reflected on my lack of maturity and the corruption of innocent minds (but remember, it was R-rated, not X-rated, so I didn't feel that bad), I came to the conclusion I shouldn't feel bad at all!