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Maria Augustyn

(Naturopath)

Maria Augustyn - BLOG

Blog

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Age related liver disease: can you prevent it?

Posted on November 17, 2011 at 7:15 PM Comments comments (0)
TREATING A RISING EPIDEMIC:
AGE-RELATED LIVER DISEASE

Very often I encourage my patients to follow a "Liver Detoxification Program". WARNING:
It has 'serious' side effects: increased energy levels, improved immunity, less aches and pains, in one word: vitality.
The first time that you follow this program, it will take you from 6-8 weeks.
After that, if you have a healthy lifestyle, you will need to do it for only two weeks: "The Express Detox".
Here in this article you will find more reasons to consider having a Liver Detoxification once a year.
 
Make an appointment as soon as you finish reading this article. Phone (02) 96713867, or email [email protected].
 
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disease, with the highest prevalence in those over 60 years.

NAFLD is hepatic steatosis associated with metabolic abnormalities such as central obesity, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and dyslipidaemia. It is also governed by genetic background, sex, age, and environmental factors (food intake, level of physical activity).

The mildest form of NAFLD is simple steatosis, characterised by hepatic fat (triglyceride [TG]) accumulation alone.On the other end of the spectrum is a necroinflammatory fibrosing disorder called steatohepatitis.

The key implications of NAFLD are increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancers such as colon cancer. There is increased standardised mortality, including deaths from decompensated cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

Hepatic steatosis (defined as greater than 5.5% TG content) has been estimated at 31% overall, with significant ethnic variation - 45% in hispanics, 33% in whites, and 24% in blacks. The National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey (NHANES) identified the increasing contributing of NAFLD as the cause for chronic liver disease rising from 47% in the 1988-1994 cohort to 76% in the 2005 - 2008 cohort. Epidemiological data are consistent with the clinical observation that NAFLD is now the most common liver disorder seen in liver clinics of Western countries.

Advanced age is associated with disease severity and fibrosis progression; 39% in those aged 40 to 50 years, and to over 40% in those greater than 70 years. A relatively high proportion of individuals with progressive forms of NAFLD develop cirrhosis by the time there are in their 70s or beyond.
The prevalence and severity of NAFLD is also influenced by presence of metabolic risk factors, such as overweight/obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Because steatosis rearely illicit any symptoms, it is usually discovered from abnormal liver tests, a liver ultrasound or CT scan in people with normal liver enzymes.

Clinicians need to consider early interventions to optimise the management of modifiable metabolic risk factors, like glycaemic control in type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidaemia, each of which could also contribute to disease progression in NAFLD.

For all patients with NAFLD, the cornerstone to management remains correction of modifiable risk factors. Exercise and dietary restriction can be very effective in carefully selected patients and should be used in a multidisciplinary approach, involving physiotherapists, dieticians, and occupational therapists to overcome potential physical limitations in older patients, such as osteoarthritis or decreasing mobility from other causes.
 
Source: Mechanisms and implications of age-related changes in the liver: nonalcoholic Fatty liver disease in the elderly. Gan L, Chitturi S, Farrell GC. Curr Gerontol Geriatr Res. 2011;2011:831536. Epub 2011 Sep 12

Pollution and your heart's health

Posted on November 17, 2011 at 6:57 PM Comments comments (1)
A CLEAR LINK:
AIR POLLUTION AND HEART DISEASE 

Environmental toxicants such as dioxins, PCBs, and pesticides can pose a risk for cardiovascular disease.

For the first time a link has been demonstrated between atherosclerosis and levels of long-lived organic environmental toxicants in the blood. 

The study, carried out by researchers at Uppsala University, was published this week in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Cardiovascular diseases, including heart attacks and strokes, are the most common cause of death in industrialised countries, and the most important underlying cause of these diseases is atherosclerosis. Unbalanced blood fats, diabetes, smoking, and high blood pressure are traditionally recognised risk factors for atherosclerosis.

Previous studies have also reported possible links between cardiovascular disease and high levels of persistent (long-lived and hard-to-degrade) organic environmental toxicants, such as dioxins, PCBs, and pesticides. These compounds are fat-soluble and can therefore accumulate in vessel walls. However, no earlier studies have investigated possible links between exposure to these compounds and atherosclerosis.

The current study measured the circulating levels of the above group of compounds in about 1,000 Swedes living in Uppsala. Atherosclerosis in the carotid artery was also measured using ultrasound.
The findings show a clear connection between increasing levels of environmental toxicants and atherosclerosis, even after taking into consideration the traditional risk factors. There was also a link to tangible signs of fat accumulation in vessel walls.

"These findings indicate that long-lived organic environmental toxicants may be involved in the occurrence of atherosclerosis and thereby lead to future death from cardiovascular diseases," says Lars Lind, professor at the Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University.

"In Sweden, and in many countries in the world, many of these substances are forbidden today, but since they are so long-lived they're still out there in our environment. We ingest these environmental toxicants with the food we eat, and since they are stored in our bodies, the levels grow higher the older we get," says Monica Lind, Associate Professor in Environmental Medicine at Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The researchers will continue to study how these compounds affect atherosclerosis in experimental models. In addition they will monitor the individuals included in their study to determine whether a direct connection exists between exposure to these substances and the occurrence of heart attacks and strokes in humans.

Funding: The study was funded in part by the Swedish Research Council and the Swedish Research Council Formas. 

Source: P Monica Lind, Bert van Bavel, Samira Salihovic, Lars Lind. Circulating Levels of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) and Carotid Atherosclerosis in the Elderly. Environmental Health Perspectives, 2011

Omega 3 and Depression in the elderly

Posted on September 19, 2011 at 6:20 AM Comments comments (0)
 
 
50 grams daily of food2liveprovides 3 grams of essential fatty acids. Also it is an anti-inflammatory food, and the ingredients have the ability of adding protection from  many of our modern diseases.
 
 
 
 

Cancer treatments and prevention

Posted on June 8, 2011 at 2:34 AM Comments comments (0)
Cancer
Facts
Cancer sufferers are taking doses of expensive and potentially toxic treatments that may be well in excess of what they need…”
“…because pharmaceutical companies were the only group who could afford to fund trials of expensive drugs, they had enormous control the scientific evidence that dictates how much should be used”
Dr. Ian Haines cites evidence that many of these new and expensive cancer drugs are just as effective when taken in smaller quantities and for a shorter time. He says “it would seem that pharmaceutical companies are attracted to studies looking at maximum-tolerated dose…”
“Not only was our health system acquiescence in industry-manipulated trials wasting taxpayer’s money but the failure to link… data was risking patient’s lives”
Journal of Clinical Oncology Aug 2007 as reported in SMH
Panaxea Education
 
Inflammation and cancer
Recent data have expanded the concept that inflammation is a critical component of tumour progression.
Many cancers arise from sites of infection, chronic irritation and inflammation. It is now becoming clear that the tumour microenvironment, which is largely orchestrated by inflammatory cells, is an indispensable participant in the neoplastic process, fostering proliferation, survival and migration.
In addition, tumour cells have co-opted some of the signalling molecules of the innate immune system, such as selectins, chemokines and their receptors for invasion, migration and metastasis.
Nature 420, 860-867 (19 December 2002)
 
A fairly recent study reported in the journal Cancer emphasizes the importance of this connection between diseases associated with increased free radicals and cancer risk. In this study, researchers looked at the number of cancer patients who also has chronic diseases such as arthritis, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes.
 
They found that almost 69 percent of the cancer patients also had one of these degenerative diseases.
Panaxea Education
 
Stress and Survival
Few events are as stressful as a diagnosis of cancer. As the stress level increases, the outpouring of the adrenal cortex hormone (cortisol) also increases. Women with breast cancer who had abnormal cortisol rhythms survived an average of 3.2 years, while those with normal rhythms survived an average of 4.5 years (more than a year longer).
 
The difference in survival times began to emerge about 1 year after the cortisol testing and continued for at least 6 additional years (Richter 2000).
Animal studies, mostly involving rats, demonstrated stress as a causal factor in cancer.
The onset of cancer appears similarly allied in humans, with the immune system highly responsive to emotional pitfalls.
 
It is well established that when the individual is emotionally challenged, cancer has a significant advantage
(Levy et al. 1987).
Panaxea Educaation
 
Supportive Programs
     Lifestyle Changes
           Preventative Medicine
 
Blood Type Diet
Reducing lectins reduces inflammation and the antigen load. This both protects the tissues and enhances recovery.
 
LIVER HEALTH - Detoxification Program
A comprehensive integrated detoxification program involving both gut repair and liver regeneration may assist in management and prevention by improving the ability of the liver to clear hormones and toxins.
 
Getting Slimmer and Healthier 
A carbohydrate-controlled, Ketogenic fat loss program is an essential approach for those with severe insulin resistance, who will usually also be overweight or obese.
Reducing dietary glycaemic load will reduce insulin release and help patients lose fat, particularly visceral adipose tissue, thus helping to minimise the risk of many chronic illnesses.
 
Your Guide to Wellness
This program is for those of relatively normal weight (i.e. fat percentage) and activity. The whole purpose of this particular dietary approach is to control insulin levels, keeping them ―in the zone and provide essential nutrients for the immune system and for repair.
 
Depression, Anxiety and Stress
Are you getting all the nutrients that you need to control mood disorders? Did you know that there are many herbs that can be used to help you go through it? Counselling and conventional medication are sometimes needed, but good nutrition can provide the rest of the support and wellbeing that you need. Be helped and supported gently and efficiently.
 
Make an appointment today. Start using Preventative Medicine to avoid inflammation and serious chronic illnesses.
 
Your health is your greatest asset. What can you do today to optimise this?          Email inquiry

Brain shaped by bacteria in the gut

Posted on June 4, 2011 at 12:39 AM Comments comments (0)
The Neuroscience of the Gut
 
Strange but true: the brain is shaped by bacteria in the digestive tract

People may advise you to listen to your gut instincts: now research suggests that your gut may have more impact on your thoughts than you ever realised. Scientists from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the Genome Institute of Singapore led by Sven Pettersson recently reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that normal gut flora, the bacteria that inhabit our intestines, have a significant impact on brain development and subsequent adult behaviour.

We human beings may think of ourselves as a highly evolved species of conscious individuals, but we are all far less human than most of us appreciate. Scientists have long recognized that the bacterial cells inhabiting our skin and gut outnumber human cells by ten-to-one. Indeed, Princeton University scientist Bonnie Bassler compared the approximately 30,000 human genes found in the average human to the more than 3 million bacterial genes inhabiting us, concluding that we are at most one percent human. We are only beginning to understand the sort of impact our bacterial passengers have on our daily lives.

Moreover, these bacteria have been implicated in the development of neurological and behavioural disorders. For example, gut bacteria may have an influence on the body’s use of vitamin B6, which in turn has profound effects on the health of nerve and muscle cells. They modulate immune tolerance and, because of this, they may have an influence on autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis. They have been shown to influence anxiety-related behaviour, although there is controversy regarding whether gut bacteria exacerbate or ameliorate stress related anxiety responses. In autism and other pervasive developmental disorders, there are reports that the specific bacterial species present in the gut are altered and that gastrointestinal problems exacerbate behavioral symptoms. A newly developed biochemical test for autism is based, in part, upon the end products of bacterial metabolism.

But this new study is the first to extensively evaluate the influence of gut bacteria on the biochemistry and development of the brain. The scientists raised mice lacking normal gut microflora, then compared their behaviour, brain chemistry and brain development to mice having normal gut bacteria. The microbe-free animals were more active and, in specific behavioural tests, were less anxious than microbe-colonized mice. In one test of anxiety, animals were given the choice of staying in the relative safety of a dark box, or of venturing into a lighted box. Bacteria-free animals spent significantly more time in the light box than their bacterially colonised littermates. Similarly, in another test of anxiety, animals were given the choice of venturing out on an elevated and unprotected bar to explore their environment, or remain in the relative safety of a similar bar protected by enclosing walls. Once again, the microbe-free animals proved themselves bolder than their colonized kin.

Pettersson’s team next asked whether the influence of gut microbes on the brain was reversible and, since the gut is colonised by microbes soon after birth, whether there was evidence that gut microbes influenced the development of the brain. They found that colonising an adult germ-free animal with normal gut bacteria had no effect on their behaviour. However, if germ free animals were colonised early in life, these effects could be reversed. This suggests that there is a critical period in the development of the brain when the bacteria are influential.

Consistent with these behavioural findings, two genes implicated in anxiety -- nerve growth factor-inducible clone A (NGF1-A) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) -- were found to be down-regulated in multiple brain regions in the germ-free animals. These changes in behaviour were also accompanied by changes in the levels of several neurotransmitters, chemicals which are responsible for signal transmission between nerve cells. The neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and noradrenaline were elevated in a specific region of the brain, the striatum, which is associated with the planning and coordination of movement and which is activated by novel stimuli, while there were there were no such effects on neurotransmitters in other brain regions, such as those involved in memory (the hippocampus) or executive function (the frontal cortex).

When Pettersson’s team performed a comprehensive gene expression analysis of five different brain regions, they found nearly 40 genes that were affected by the presence of gut bacteria. Not only were these primitive microbes able to influence signaling between nerve cells while sequestered far away in the gut, they had the astonishing ability to influence whether brain cells turn on or off specific genes.

How, then, do these single-celled intestinal denizens exert their influence on a complex multicellular organ such as the brain? Although the answer is unclear, there are several possibilities: the Vagus nerve, for example, connects the gut to the brain, and it’s known that infection with the Salmonella bacteria stimulates the expression of certain genes in the brain, which is blocked when the Vagus nerve is severed. This nerve may be stimulated as well by normal gut microbes, and serve as the link between them and the brain. Alternatively, those microbes may modulate the release of chemical signals by the gut into the bloodstream which ultimately reach the brain. These gut microbes, for example, are known to modulate stress hormones which may in turn influence the expression of genes in the brain.

Regardless of how these intestinal “guests” exert their influence, these studies suggest that brain-directed behaviours, which influence the manner in which animals interact with the external world, may be deeply influenced by that animal’s relationship with the microbial organisms living in its gut. And the discovery that gut bacteria exert their influence on the brain within a discrete developmental stage may have important implications for developmental brain disorders.

Heijtz RD, Wang S, Anuar F, Qian Y, Björkholm B, Samuelsson A, Hibberd ML, Forssberg H, Pettersson S. Normal gut microbiota modulates brain development and behaviour. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Feb 15;108(7):3047-52. Epub 2011 Jan 31

Low Cholesterol may cause depression

Posted on June 2, 2011 at 11:13 PM Comments comments (0)
Are Cholesterol-Lowering Drug Regimens Causing Depression?
 
Low cholesterol is a risk factor for depression, according to integrative psychiatrist James Greenblatt, MD, of Waltham, MA. Speaking at the recent iMosaic conference, Dr. Greenblatt said there are 11 studies showing strong correlations between low total cholesterol and increased depression and suicidality.

The brain is the most cholesterol-rich organ, and cholesterol is a building block for many important hormones. This doesn’t mean that high cholesterol levels are healthy, but neither are levels that are too low. Dr. Greenblatt contends that America’s statin-mania is a key contributor to the epidemic of depression.

He’s seen patients in whom serious depression resolved simply by reducing statins and allowing cholesterol to rise up. "I sometimes go against cardiologists, but you’re not helping anyone if you increase risk of suicide while trying to prevent a heart attack"
Panaxea
 
About cholesterol (blood fats) 
 
Blood fats include triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol. When levels of these fats are abnormal or disturbed patients are at risk of atherosclerosis, hypertension, coronary artery disease, stroke and a number of other disorders.
The most common types of blood fat disorders that patients can present with (either alone or in combination) are:
 
High LDL: low-density lipoproteins (LDL’s) transport cholesterol and triglycerides away from cells and tissues that produce cholesterol (e.g., liver), towards cells and tissues which are taking up cholesterol and triglycerides (e.g., peripheral tissues, muscles, nerves, etc). When too much LDL cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up on the inner walls of the arteries that feed the heart and brain. Together with other substances LDL can form plaques, thick, hard deposits that can clog those arteries. This is why cholesterol inside LDL lipoproteins is called bad cholesterol. The risk of having a heart attack or stroke rises directly as a person's LDL cholesterol level increases.
 
Low HDL: high-density lipoproteins (HDL’s) carry cholesterol away from the arteries and back to the liver, where it's excreted via the hepatobiliary excretion route. HDL also removes excess cholesterol from plaques in arteries, thus slowing the progress of cardiovascular disease. This is why HDL cholesterol is known as the "good" cholesterol. Low HDL cholesterol levels increase the risk for cardiovascular disease.
 
High triglycerides: triglycerides are fats that contain a glycerol molecule attached to three fatty acids. These fats come from foods and are also made endogenously by the liver. The fat stored in the body is predominantly made from triglycerides. LDL carries triglycerides from the liver into the peripheral tissues and deposits it there; HDL carries it from the peripheries back to the liver for excretion. For this reason, hypertriglyceridaemia is commonly associated with high LDL and low HDL levels. High blood triglyceride levels are associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease.
 
Symptoms & Signs
High cholesterol levels may cause few, if any, symptoms. Diagnosis is usually made through blood tests. Severe symptoms may include:
Fat deposits that form growths that look like yellow plaques  in the tendons and skin.
Extremely high levels of triglycerides may cause enlargement of the liver and spleen, and pancreatitis, such as severe abdominal pain.
Can also cause symptoms of cardiovascular disease such as angina and hypertension.
 
Aetiology / Risk Factors
Major causative factors and risk factors that can contribute to dyslipidaemia (blood fat disorders) include:
Obesity
Diet rich in cholesterol, saturated fat and trans-fatty acids
Excess calories in diet, particularly sugar and refined carbohydrates
Low fibre diet
Sedentary lifestyle
Stress
Smoking cigarettes
Hypothyroidism
Polycystic ovarian syndrome
Obstructive liver disease
Acute hepatitis
Acute and chronic alcohol abuse
Poorly controlled diabetes and/or insulin resistance
Overactive pituitary gland
Nephrotic syndrome and/or kidney failure
Porphyria
Systemic lupus erythematosus
Multiple myeloma
Lymphoma
Medications (e.g., oestrogens, oral contraceptives, corticosteroids, beta blockers, anabolic steroids and isotretinoin)
 
Diet and Lifestyle
Dietary and lifestyle guidelines that may assist in the management of dyslipidaemia include the following:
Weight reduction where appropriate is essential. A Ketogenic Diet is a safe fat loss program that burns fat quickly, helps to lower blood triglycerides and increase beneficial HDL levels.
Maintaining dietary fibre is an important part of dietary management of dyslipidaemia. Water soluble fibres, taken with adequate water, swell in the stomach to create a sensation of fullness which helps reduce appetite. They also help prevent cholesterol absorption from the gut and promote ease of elimination.
Diets should also include soy protein because it reduces total cholesterol when combined with a low-fat diet.
Dietary intake of foods high in antioxidants is important as an inverse association has been found between dietary antioxidants and risk of CVD – vitamin E appears to be of particular value.
Omega-3 fatty acids (particularly DHA) from cold-water fish may be beneficial for lowering elevated triglyceride levels.
Permanent change in the amounts of saturated fat and cholesterol consumed is also required.
The Mediterranean Diet has been found to be beneficial in managing dyslipidaemia. This is comprised of whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, olive oil and garlic. This diet is high in monounsaturated fatty acids and has been shown to increase HDL cholesterol plasma levels and reduce susceptibility to LDL oxidation.
Lifestyle modifications that are beneficial include increased physical activity, stress reduction and smoking cessation (tobacco use lowers HDL cholesterol).
 
Helpful Programs
 
Integrated Detoxification
A comprehensive integrated detoxification program involving both gut repair and liver regeneration may assist in the management and prevention of dyslipidaemia by improving overall hepatic function, and reducing the inflammatory stimuli of toxicity, dysbiosis and poor diet.
 
Professional Weight Management Program
A carbohydrate-controlled, Ketogenic fat loss program is an essential approach for those with severe insulin resistance, who will usually also be overweight or obese.
Reducing dietary glycaemic load will reduce insulin release and help patients lose fat, particularly visceral adipose tissue, thus helping to minimise the risk of many chronic illnesses.
 
Wellness Lifestyle Program
This program is for those of relatively normal weight (i.e. fat percentage) and activity. This approach is designed to maintain a healthy body composition and insulin sensitivity by utilising an anti-inflammatory diet, stress management and regular exercise, all associated with optimum health and longevity.
 

Blueberries may inhibit obesity

Posted on May 31, 2011 at 9:45 PM Comments comments (1)
Blueberrin
May Inhibit Development of Fat Cells
 
The benefits of blueberry consumption have been demonstrated in several nutrition studies, more specifically the cardio-protective benefits derived from their high polyphenol content. Blueberries have shown potential to have a positive effect on everything from ageing to metabolic syndrome. Recently, a researcher from Texas Woman’s University (TWU) in Denton, TX, examined whether blueberries could play a role in reducing one of the world’s greatest health challenges: obesity.

Shiwani Moghe, MS, a graduate student at TWU, decided to evaluate whether blueberry polyphenols, Blueberrin play a role in adipocyte differentiation, the process in which a relatively
 
unspecialised cell acquires specialised features of an adipocyte, an animal connective tissue cell specialised for the synthesis and storage of fat. Plant polyphenols have been shown to fight adipogenesis, which is the development of fat cells, and induce lipolysis, which is the breakdown of lipids/fat. Moghe will present her research at the Experimental Biology 2011 meeting for the American Society for Nutrition on Sunday, April 10, at 12:45 pm.
“I wanted to see if using blueberry polyphenols could inhibit obesity at a molecular stage,”  said Moghe. The study was performed in tissue cultures taken from mice.
The polyphenols showed a dose-dependent suppression of adipocyte differentiation. The lipid content in the control group was significantly higher than the content of the tissue given three doses of blueberry polyphenols. The highest dose of blueberry polyphenols yielded a 73% decrease in lipids; the lowest dose showed a 27% decrease.

“We still need to test this dose in humans, to make sure there are no adverse effects, and to see if the doses are as effective. This is a burgeoning area of research. Determining the best dose for humans will be important,” said Moghe. “The promise is there for blueberries to help reduce adipose tissue from forming in the body.”

These preliminary results contribute more items to the laundry list of benefits related to blueberries, which have already been shown to mitigate health conditions like cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome.

Experimental Biology Conference 2011 Washington DC
Panaxea

Anti-cancer curries

Posted on May 30, 2011 at 10:36 PM Comments comments (0)
Curcumin compound boosts
head and neck cancer therapy
 
The May, 2011 issue of the American Medical Association journal Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery published the finding of researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center of a benefit for a derivative of curcumin, which occurs in the spice turmeric, in the treatment of head and
neck cancer with cisplatin, a platinum-based chemotherapeutic drug. The development of chemotherapy-resistant tumor cells is a major cause of treatment failure in head and neck cancer, resulting in relapse or metastasis.

University of Michigan professor of otolaryngology and pharmacology Thomas Carey, PhD and his associates evaluated the effects of varying doses of cisplatin or cisplatin combined with the 
curcumin-derived compound FLLL32 on cisplatin-sensitive and cisplatin-resistant cultured head and neck cancer cell lines. FLLL32 added to a low dose of cisplatin was found to be as effective at inducing programmed cell death in cisplatin-resistant cells as four times as much cisplatin alone. The team found that FLLL32 reduced activation of the protein known as signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), which is elevated in approximately 82 percent head and neck cancers and has been associated with cisplatin resistance.

"Typically, when cells become resistant to cisplatin, we have to give increasingly higher doses," explained Dr Carey, who is the codirector of the Head and Neck Oncology Program at the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center. "But this drug is so toxic that patients who survive treatment often experience long-term side effects from the treatment."

"This work opens the possibility of using lower, less toxic doses of cisplatin to achieve an equivalent or enhanced tumor kill," he remarked.

"The absence of dose-limiting toxic effects seen with curcumin, the compound on which FLLL32 is based, suggests that STAT3 inhibitors may have a clinical role in the future," the authors conclude. "Continued investigation of the JAK/STAT pathway and the design of novel inhibitors, like FLLL32, that are capable of targeting this pathway may herald new therapeutic approaches that enhance or obviate the need for currently used chemotherapeutic agents."
Panaxea
 
Curcumin, commonly known as Turmeric is a very powerful antioxidant, anti-cancer herb/condiment.Turmeric is used in Indian and Thai cooking. Turmeric is the herb that gives the yellow colour to curries.
Enjoy your food as medicine, including turmeric as often as possible.

Improve your memory effortlessly

Posted on May 29, 2011 at 10:24 PM Comments comments (0)
Blueberries May Reverse
Age-Related Mental Decline
A new study with lab rats suggests that supplementing with blueberries for one month may slow and even reverse the decline in mental function associated with age.
Cognitive performance declines naturally with age, but new results published in Nutrition indicate that for elderly rats, one month's supplementation with blueberries was associated with an improvement in the memory scores, as measured in a maze.
In addition, data showed that two months of consuming the blueberry-enriched diet was associated with a prolongation of the benefits after the diet was stopped, and the performance of the aging rats was similar to that of younger rats.
"Therefore, one-, two- and four-month diets substantially reversed the age-related object memory impairment found in 19-month-old rats," wrote researchers from the University of Houston and Tufts University U.S. Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging. "This illustrates a surprisingly prompt and powerful effect of an antioxidant dietary intervention," they added.
Blueberry consumption has previously been linked to reduced risk of Alzheimer's, and the beneficial effects of the blueberries are thought to be associated with their flavonoid content––in particular anthocyanins and flavanols. The exact way in which flavonoids affect the brain is unknown, but they have previously been shown to cross the blood brain barrier after dietary intake. It is believed that they may exert their effects on learning and memory by enhancing existing neuronal connections, improving cellular communications and stimulating neuronal regeneration.
Earlier this year, researchers from the University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center reported that 12 weeks of consuming a daily drink of about 500 ml of blueberry juice was associated with improved learning and word list recall (Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 58:3996-4000, 2010). The study was said to be the first human trial to assess the potential benefits of blueberries on brain function in older adults with increased risk for dementia and Alzheimer's.
The new study, led by Houston's David Malin, PhD, examined the effects of one or two months of consuming a blueberry-enriched diet in aging Fischer-344 rats.
Results showed that animals receiving the blueberry diet performed better than animals not receiving a berry-enriched diet and that two months of supplementation resulted in a maintenance of the improved performance after the supplementation period ended. No such effects were observed in the one-month group, said the researchers.
The researchers noted, "One possible explanation [for this observation] is a 'threshold hypothesis.' This hypothesis assumes there is a threshold concentration of antioxidants, particularly longer-lasting fat-soluble antioxidants, needed to maintain alleviation of memory impairment.
"The two-month diet might have produced a larger surplus of antioxidant nutrients over the threshold, whereas the one-month diet might have produced only a scant surplus above the threshold. Then, as the antioxidant nutrients are metabolized, the one-month diet might soon lose its ability to prevent memory impairment, whereas this loss of effectiveness might hypothetically take much longer after the two-month diet," they added.
Furthermore, rats on the blueberry diet increased their memory scores, while the control animals displayed a decline in memory scores.
"The present study is encouraging in terms of potential human application," wrote Dr. Malin and his co-workers. "First, the present results suggest that even a relatively brief blueberry diet might produce measurable benefits. Second, the benefits of several months of diet might be maintained for a considerable period after the diet is interrupted. Third, blueberry supplementation might possibly reverse some degree of memory impairment that has already developed.
"This raises the possibility that this sort of nutritional intervention might still be beneficial even after certain memory deficiencies have become evident," they added.
 
Nutrition; Published online ahead of print. May 2011
Panaxea
 

Osteoporosis drugs: fractures and jaw rotting disease.

Posted on May 24, 2011 at 9:43 PM Comments comments (1)
)Drug holiday advised for bisphosphonates
 
Good nutrition applies to the health of your bones.
Do you know what you need to do to safeguard your health?
Have a personal, unique and holistic prescription that will help you get the most out of your life:

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