Tag Archives: Natural Products/Herbs/Supplements

Food fortification aids nutrient intake

foods-1003976In a recent national dietary survey published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, researchers analyzed the diets of over 7,000 children and adolescents between 2 to 18 years old. Nutrient content of each food and supplement consumed in each child’s diet was calculated and compared to the Estimated Average Requirements (EAR). The results found that boys and girls between the ages 2 to 8 had the lowest levels of inadequate nutrient intake while girls between the ages 14 to 18 had the highest levels of inadequacy. Vitamin D, thiamin, and folate in fortified foods were the highest contributors of at least half of the nutrient intake. Other nutrients that contributed to at least 12 to 18 percent of the intake were vitamin A, vitamin C, riboflavin, niacin, B-6, B-12, iron, and zinc. Calcium was among the lowest at 4.5 to 6.6 percent. Despite the increased nutrients in fortified foods, a significant percentage of children did not meet the EAR for their age and sex. What are your recommendations to your patients for maintaining a healthy diet?

For additional information, please click Reuters.

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Vitamin supplements may lower exercise endurance

woman-039s-hand-take-vitamin-omega-3-fish-oil-pills-on-a-hand-100176690In an 11 week trial recently published in The Journal of Physiology, researchers at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences in Oslo assessed the effect vitamin C and E have on exercise endurance. 54 participants received either 1,000 mg of vitamin C plus 235 mg of vitamin E or placebo and they exercised up to four times a week. Researchers found no difference in performance between the two groups. However, those who took vitamin C and E seemed to produce less of a specific mitochondrial marker in their muscle cells, which suggests of a decrease endurance. What are your thoughts about this study? What are your typical recommendations to patients looking to enhance their exercise endurance?

For additional information, please click BCC.

Image courtesy of [Praisaeng]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Omega-3 fatty acids may reduce brain aging

human-brain-100214120The Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study recently published looked at the association between omega-3 fatty acids and brain aging in 1,111 postmenopausal women who were on average 70 years old. The researchers measured the amounts of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in the women’s red blood cells at the beginning of the study and followed them for eight years. It turned out that women with the highest levels of EPA and DHA had a greater brain volume and hippocampus compared to women who had the lowest fatty acid levels. This suggests that EPA and DHA may protect the brain from shrinkage with age. What are your thoughts about this study? How often do patients ask you about using omega-3 fatty acids for treatment or prevention of cognitive disorders?

For additional information, please click Reuters.

Image courtesy of [dream designs]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Warning about thyroid supplements

bottle-of-pills-10014449In a recent report published in a scientific journal called Thyroid, researchers found that 9 out of 10 popular thyroid supplements sold online contained prescription medications known as thyroxine (T4) and/or triiodothyronine (T3). Some products contained amounts well over the normal starting dose of these medications. How often do you recommend alternatives to thyroid supplements?

For additional information, please click NYT.

Image courtesy of [m_bartosch]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Winterize Your Kids – Webinar by Dr. Aviva Romm

This Thursday, 11/8 at 8:30 p.m. EST, Dr. Aviva Romm, will offer a FREE webinar “Winterize Your Kids – Optimizing Health with Herbs, Diet and Common Sense.”

Dr. Romm is a trained physician, midwife and herbalist, author of several well-known books on children and women’s health.  Dr. Romm is a past president of the American Herbalists Guild and an adjunct professor at MCPHS.

Sign up to attend this great webinar at http://herbwebinar.com/

Consumption of fish and omega-3 fatty acids is associated with decreased risk of cerebrovascular disease

A recent meta-analysis published inthe British Medical Journal (BMJ) evaluated the association between fish consumption, long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, and the risk of cerebrovascular disease.  Researchers included prospective cohort studies as well as randomized controlled trials and concluded that consumption of omega-3 fatty acids and fish are associated with a decreased risk of cerebrovascular disease. How do you educate your patients about all the recent conflicting evidence aboutconsuming fish and omega-3 fatty acids?

For more information, please read the full article in BMJ.

Marijuana use associated with testicular cancer

A population-based case-control study found that male patients who used marijuana had twice the risk of developing testicular germ cell tumors (TGCT) compared to men who never used marijuana. Although the exact mechanism of this association is not fully explained, it is postulated that germ cell function may be influenced by cannabinoids. Do you believe this is enough evidence to persuade against use of marijuana?


For more information, please visit Cancer.

Second Large Study Shows Ginkgo biloba Ineffective for Alzheimer’s Disease

A new study published in the journal Lancet Neurology reports that Ginkgo biloba does not protect patients from Alzheimer’s disease. This 5 year study conducted in France,  included close to 3000 patients assigned to either Ginkgo biloba or placebo.  A similar percentage in each group was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.  Although bleeding is one of the severe adverse effects associated with this plant, the incidence of bleeding and cardiovascular events did not differ. How often do you treat patients with Alzheimer’s disease? What are your typical recommendations?

For more information, visit Lancet Neurology.


Add Curcumin to Your Diet To Cut Risk of Diabetes

A Thai study published in the Journal of Diabetes Care found that curcumin, a compound in tumeric, may reduce patients’ risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Patients with pre-diabetes assigned to curcumin took 6 capsules of ‘curcuminoids’ a day and after 9 months, 0 patients out of 119 patients progressed to type 2 diabetes while 19 out of 116 patients taking placebo did. Curcumin is thought to fight inflammation and oxidative damage. What are some of the typical ways in which you recommend patients to add turmeric to their diet?

For additional information, please click here.