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Archive for the ‘Newsletters’ Category

Managing Metabolic Syndrome

Nutrients improve chances of staying healthy

Metabolic syndrome is a group of conditions that can include obesity, abnormal blood fat levels, high blood pressure, and borderline high blood sugar and insulin levels, which together increase chances of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

Doctors in this study described heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes as “cardiometabolic disorders” and said that recent studies have linked them to vitamin D deficiency. Researchers reviewed 28 vitamin D studies covering 99,475 participants and found that, compared to those with the lowest blood levels of vitamin D, those with the most vitamin D were 43 percent less likely to develop a cardiometabolic disorder. Chances were 33 percent lower for cardiovascular disease, 51 percent lower for metabolic syndrome, and 55 percent lower for type 2 diabetes. Doctors believe that correcting vitamin D deficiencies in adults may slow the epidemic of cardiometabolic disorders.

Researchers in another study said earlier research showed dairy foods reduced chances of obesity and hoped to find that whey protein–from dairy and rich in essential amino acids–could improve metabolic syndrome. Seventy overweight or obese people, aged 18 to 65, took 27 grams of whey protein, casein protein, or a glucose placebo, twice per day, up to 30 minutes before breakfast and the evening meal. Researchers asked participants to maintain their normal diet and physical activity, After 12 weeks, compared to placebo, those in the whey protein group had 22 percent lower blood levels of a fat known as triacyglycerol and fasting insulin levels 11 percent lower.

Reference: British Journal of Nutrition; 2010, Vol. 104, No. 5, 716-23
This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, November 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Van's Health on June - 22 - 2011
categories: Newsletters, Supplements

Pycnogenol Improved Kidney Function

Doctors in this study said Pycnogenol, an extract of pine bark, promotes healthy blood pressure and wanted to see if it could also improve kidney function.

Fifty-five people with high blood pressure and early signs of impaired kidney function took the anti-hypertension drug Ramipril with or without 150 mg of Pycnogenol per day. After six months, protein in the urine–a sign of impaired kidney function–had nearly returned to normal in the Pycnogenol group while remaining elevated in the Ramipril-only group.

Blood pressure and inflammation were also much lower with Pycnogenol and blood flow to the kidneys had improved.

Reference: Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology and Therapeutics; 2010, Vol. 15, No. 1, 41-6

This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, December 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Van's Health on December - 13 - 2010
categories: Herbs, Newsletters

Clear Vision, Healthy Eyes

Nutrients slowed visual decline and preserved sight in older adults

In a lutein study, 225 non-smokers with a progressive blindness disease (retinitis pigmentosa), aged 18 to 60, took 12 mg of lutein per day, or a placebo, along with 15,000 IU of vitamin A palmitate. After four years, those in the lutein group had less loss of mid-peripheral vision compared to placebo. Lutein, a natural plant-based yellow carotenoid, increased pigment levels in the macula of the eye. Those with the greatest increase in pigment had the lowest decline in vision.

In an eye disease study, researchers measured fats in the diets of 6,734 older adults. Those who consumed the most trans-fats (hydrogenated oils) were 76 percent more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD) than those who consumed the least. For omega-3s, chances were 15 percent lower, and for olive oil, 52 percent lower.

In another AMD study, doctors measured the diets and signs of early-stage AMD in 2,454 older adults, and followed up for 10 years. Those who ate one serving of fish per week, took omega-3 fatty acid supplements, or ate one to two servings of nuts per week were up to 35 percent less likely to develop early AMD compared to those who did not. In general, those who consumed lower than average levels of the omega-6 linoleic acid, were non-smokers, had a higher ratio of HDL (the “good” cholesterol) to total cholesterol, or who consumed more beta carotene than average, were least likely to develop early AMD. Doctors said that balancing nutrients helps maximize health benefit.

Reference: Archives of Ophthalmology; 2010, Vol. 128, No. 4, 403-11

This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, September 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Flu, Virus and Immunity

Nutrients reduce seasonal infection and boost immunity

In a children’s flu study, researchers said, Danish scientists recently discovered vitamin D triggers immunity system killer T-cells, white blood cells which attack viruses, but remain inactive when vitamin D is low.

In this study, 334 kids took 1,200 IU of vitamin D per day, or a placebo, from December through March. Over this time, 19 percent in the placebo group got influenza A compared to 11 percent for the Vitamin D.

In those whose vitamin D levels were higher, 83 percent had no infection.

In those with asthma, 12 in the placebo group had an asthma attack compared to two in the vitamin D group. The researchers believe vitamin D could have been even more effective in preventing flu because it takes about three months to build up a base level in the blood, and the study began after flu season had started.

Check out the CDC (Center for Disease Control) updated map on where the Influenza (flu) is. CDC Map

In a related study, researchers measured vitamin D levels during the fall and winter in 195 men and women aged 20 to 88. Over four months, 84 participants got viral infections. In those whose vitamin D levels were lower than 38 nanograms per milliliter of blood, 55 percent had no respiratory tract infection. In those whose vitamin D levels were higher, 83 percent had no infection.

In two lab studies, researchers exposed white-blood killer T-cells to influenza A and other viruses before and after healthy donors had taken the probiotic Bacillus coagulans or 15 mg of zinc per day for the previous month. In both studies, killer T-cell activity significantly increased after taking probiotics or zinc.

Reference: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition; 2010, Vol. 91, No. 5, 1255-60

This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, September 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Zinc Improves Mood in Women

Doctors in a pilot study said zinc helps the brain develop and function and wanted to see if the nutrient could improve mood.

Thirty young women took a multivitamin or a multivitamin plus 7 mg of zinc per day. After 10 weeks, compared to those who didn’t take zinc, the zinc group had higher blood levels of zinc and better (lower) scores for anger, hostility, depression and dejection.

Researchers used the Profile of Mood States, or POMS test, which quickly and accurately measures the effects of different treatments, including subtle changes in mood.

Doctors concluded zinc supplements may help reduce anger and depression.

Reference: European Journal of Clinical Nutrition; 2010, Vol. 64, No. 3, 331-3

This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, September 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Preserving Youth

Telomeres may be a Key to younger biological age

People with higher levels of omega-3s and men who drak the most green tea had longer telomeres, a sign of younger, healthier cells, new studies reveal.

Telomeres – the protective caps at the end of chromosome DNA strands that contain our genetic code – are like the tip of a shoelace that keeps it from unraveling. When a cell divides, the new cell must take with it a complete copy of the DNA strand to function properly. Long, healthy telomeres on the ends of each chromosome allow the new cell to get a complete DNA copy. Age, stress, and poor nutrition can erode telomeres, eventually damaging chromosomes and any new cells. Doctors are beginning to gauge biological age by telomere length.

Doctors in a telomere study measured blood levels of omega-3s and the length of white-blood-cell telomeres in 608 outpatients with stable coronary artery disease and followed up for five years. Those who started the study with the lowest levels of docosahexaenoic and eicosapentaenoic acids (DHA and EPA) had the most rapid telomere shortening, and those with the highest DHA and EPA levels had the slowest telomere shortening. Researchers found a direct link: the higher the level of DHA and EPA, the less likely telomeres were to shorten. Doctors concluded that omega-3s may protect against cellular aging in those with coronary artery disease.

In another study, researchers measured the diets and telomere length in 2006 Chinese men and women, aged at least 65. After adjusting for environmental and demographic factors, women who consumed more fats and oils had shorter telomeres compared to women who ate fewer fats and oils. Men who drank the most green tea, about 25 ounces per day, had much longer telomeres compared to the men who drank the least. Doctors said the average difference in telomere length in the men equaled about 5 years of life.

Reference: Journal of the American Medical Association; 2010, Vol. 303, No. 3, 250-7

This article was also published in our newletter “Natural Insights for Well Being”, September 2010. Stop by Van’s Health Foods at 2148 First Street Livermore, CA or call us at 925-447-2976 to be added to our mailing list.

You may also subscribe to our blog by RSS or by providing your name and email in the box provided in the right margin.

Thank you,

The Van’s Health Foods Team

P.S. Please feel free to discuss this topic.  This is for our community to use.

Do not ask specific questions intended for store employees. Stop by the store or call us with your specific questions.

Van's Health on September - 20 - 2010
categories: Herbs, Newsletters
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