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!

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Curcumin as Good as Exercise

Well, not really. But this study would suggest that curcumin has a similar effect to exercise on at least one very specific parameter that was measured. In this randomized, controlled study involving 32 postmenopausal women, researchers found that both curcumin and aerobic exercise may equally improve vascular health during the aging process.

Subjects were assigned to one of three groups: control, moderate aerobic exercise training, or oral curcumin. The intervention period was 8 weeks. Flow-mediated dilation was measured at baseline and after each intervention. No differences between groups were found at baseline.

Compared to the control group, the curcumin and exercise groups equally showed improved flow-mediated dilation from baseline. Interesting? Hmmm...

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Source: Curcumin ingestion and exercise training improve vascular endothelial function in postmenopausal women

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Study Reveals MK-7 is the Best Form of Vitamin K2

The results of a new study on bioavailability of vitamin K2 has added more weight behind the thinking that MK-7 is the best form of this essential nutrient. The researchers investigated the effects of a single 420 mcg dose of MK-4 or MK-7, consumed with a standardized breakfast in ten healthy Japanese women.

Results indicated that MK-7 was well absorbed and was measurable in serum samples up to 2 days after consumption. On the flipside, however, MK-4 was not measured in any of the women at any time, the researchers said.


Probiotics for Weight Loss

Again, I probably sound like Dr. Oz every time I talk about weight loss, but here's another study showing probiotics can influence body fat. This study was done by researchers from the University of Manitoba and McGill University in Canada and adds to emerging body of evidence supporting the effects of gut microflora on metabolic factors and obesity (follow the links below for more studies related to this).


Study Confirms Diet Influences Depression Risk

Can anyone explain to me why the *beep* we acknowledge Black Friday in Canada?! Black Friday is an American event! Not to dismiss or disrespect my American subscribers/readers, but just as Canadians don't celebrate Independence Day, American Thanksgiving, Martin Luther King's Day, President's Day, or any other American holiday, why are Canadians making a big deal of Black Friday?!

Black Friday has become the largest single day of shopping in the US, and it's due to the fact that the American Thanksgiving always falls on a Thursday. Employers often give their employees the following Friday off, which swells the number of available shoppers on a day that's become the unofficial start of the Holiday shopping season.

A lot of truths in Wall-E

However, most Canadians don't have either the Thursday (of American Thanksgiving) or Black Friday off. So what's up? I'll tell you. Most of the major stores in Canada are American-owned, and this is just another day for consumerism to thrive, regardless of the nation you reside in.

But I know...it's hard to resist those amazing deals! We work hard for our money, and we all want to save as much as possible. But most of us have been brainwashed to forget that the best way to save money is to buy NOTHING today.

This consumerism is unsustainable. Focus less on "stuff" and more on your health. And with that in mind...

A meta-analysis of 11 longitudinal studies involving unipolar depression and/or depressive symptoms in adults, between the ages of 18-97 years, found a link between depression and diet (is this not common sense by now?).

Follow-up ranged from 2-13 years. Researchers found an inverse association between depression risk and folate, omega-3 fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids, olive oil, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes.


Calcium Supplements are Safe According to New Study

Here's another positive study on calcium supplements--my second positive post in a row on calcium. This recently published study failed to establish a relationship between greater calcium intake and increased calcification of the coronary artery (a condition that characterizes heart disease).

The study was conducted in almost 1,300 older men and women between the ages of 36 and 83 years enrolled in the Framingham Offspring Study (which includes children and spouses of participants in the Framingham Heart Study). The analysis found absolutely no link between calcium intake--from diet or supplements--and coronary artery calcification (CAC), a strong predictor of heart attack.


Calcium Supplements Reduce the Risk of Hyperparathyroidism

Here's another positive study backing calcium intake. A prospective cohort study including 58,354 females with no history of primary hyperparathyroidism, aged 39-66, followed over a 22 year period, found that calcium intake may be associated with a reduced risk of primary hyperparathyroidism in women.

Hyperparathyroidism is the most common cause of hypercalcemia (excessive levels of blood calcium) and the third most common endocrine disorder in the United States. When the parathyroid glands that secrete too much parathyroid hormone, the body starts to mobilize the calcium in the bones, which leads to increasingly poor bone density, and host of other secondary effects, like kidney stones, and increased risk of high blood pressure and stroke.


Ubiquinol/Ubiquinone Ratio Linked to Coronary Artery Disease

In a controlled study involving 77 patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and 44 healthy controls, found that antioxidant balance and oxidative stress in DNA may play an important role in the pathogenesis of CAD. The comparative ratios of ubiquinol/ubiquinone, as well as couple markers of oxidative stress were measured.

Oxidative stress was was elevated in CAD patients compared to controls. The ubiquinol/ubiquinone ratio was lower in patients with CAD than controls (indicating lower than desired ubiquinol concentrations).

Findings suggest that the disruption of pro-oxidant/antioxidant balance and oxidative stress in DNA may play an important role in CAD (probably not anything "new," but confirms what we already knew, or at least thought).

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Source: Correlations between Oxidative DNA Damage, Oxidative Stress and Coenzyme Q10 in Patients with Coronary Artery Disease 

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Fish (but Not Fish Oil Supplements) Reduce Stroke Risk

Here is a study that confirms what I've been saying for the last 4 years or so... benefits of fish oil supplements are questionable. Rather than repeating myself, non-subscribers or those new to this website can read my discussion in these previous posts:
This newly published study was a meta-analysis of data from 800,000 individuals in 15 countries found fish consumption was associated with a reduction in the risk of cerebrovascular disease. However, the results also indicated that the highest average intakes of omega-3 fatty acids from  supplements, only had a very small effect on risk reduction.


Vitamin D Helps to Reduce Body Fat

I always feel like Dr. Oz when I present research on weight/fat loss, but I'll take that risk since this is an interesting one. A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, parallel-group trial, involving 77 healthy overweight and obese women, found that vitamin D3 may reduce body fat mass.

Subjects (average age 38 years, average BMI 29.8 kg/m2) received either 1000 IU (25 mcg) daily vitamin D3 or placebo for 12 weeks. Body weight, height, waist, hip, fat mass, vitamin D, iPTH, and dietary intakes were measured at baseline and post-intervention.