Dec 13 2020

When it comes to Health Benefits, Pomegranates Pack a Punch

Published by under antibacterials,Antioxidants

When it comes to Health Benefits, Pomegranates pack a Punch.

The unrivaled health benefits of pomegranates make this a favorite winter fruit.

So peaches and watermelon may no longer be in season, but with the winter months comes one of the healthiest fruits you can get your hands on…the pomegranate. Seeing them in the stores puts me in the holiday spirit as they are plentiful this time of year. Not only are they tasty and fun to eat, but their range of beneficial plant compounds is also unrivaled.1*

Pomegranates earn their status as a powerful superfood due to their wide range of nutrients and compounds which can help lower your risk of developing various diseases. While the thick tough skin is discarded, (yet used in pomegranate powder and some juices) the inside is packed full of seeds with a sweet, red, and juicy covering called an aril. These seeds and arils can be eaten raw or can be juiced. They are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and bioactive plant compounds. But consuming both seeds, arils, and skin, as in some pomegranate juices and powders, can deem all the more beneficial. “…The synergistic action of the pomegranate constituents appears to be superior to that of single constituents…” (1,2)*

Pomegranates have historical medicinal uses for a variety of ailments.  “…The pomegranate, Punica granatum L., is an ancient, mystical, unique fruit borne on a small, long-living tree cultivated throughout the Mediterranean region, as far north as the Himalayas, in Southeast Asia, and in California and Arizona in the United States. In addition to its ancient historical uses, pomegranate is used in several systems of medicine for a variety of ailments…”2*

A cup of pomegranate seeds and arils contains:

  • Fiber: 7 grams
  • Protein: 3 grams
  • Vitamin C: 30% of the RDI
  • Vitamin K: 36% of the RDI
  • Folate: 16% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 12% of the RDI1*

The two most notable plant compounds found in pomegranates and responsible for most of their health benefits are punicalagin, which are extremely potent antioxidants, and punicic acid, which is the main fatty acid in the arils. Punicalagins, which are found in the juice and peel, has been found to have three times more antioxidant benefits than red wine or green tea.  If you ever see pomegranate extract or powder, it is typically made from the peel. 1*

Punicic Acid on the other hand is found in the pomegranate seed oil, which is the main fatty acid in the arils. It is a type of conjugated linoleic acid with very potent biological effects. 1*

Because of the potent antioxidant properties of the punicalagins, pomegranates offer a plethora of health benefits. “…In the past decade, numerous studies on the antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, and anti-inflammatory properties of pomegranate constituents have been published, focusing on treatment and prevention of cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, dental conditions, erectile dysfunction, bacterial infections and antibiotic resistance, and ultraviolet radiation-induced skin damage. ..”(1,2)*

There is nothing better than eating food you really enjoy but at the same time knowing it is so good for you. When you eat a pomegranate or drink pomegranate juice, you will be benefitting from the following:  

Improve Gut health and boost healthy bacteria

The plant compounds found in pomegranate have been shown to help ward off harmful microorganisms. When it comes to inflammation, usually originating from harmful bacteria in the gut, we want to eat foods that promote good gut bacteria and avoid those that promote the bad. In addition to warding off certain types of harmful bacteria, it also helps battle Candida albicans. The antibacterial and antifungal effects of the compounds found in pomegranate may also protect against mouth infections and inflammation to include gingivitis and periodontitis.(1,2)*

 Strong anti-inflammatory properties

Whenever we can, we should eat foods that reduce inflammation as opposed to those that cause it (as in processed foods and sugar). Inflammation is a leading cause of such diseases as cancer, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, and obesity. One study involving pomegranates showed those who consumed it benefited from a reduction in inflammatory activity in the digestive tract, and also in both breast cancer and colon cancer cells. In another 12 week study of people with diabetes, they found that “…1.1 cups of pomegranate juice per day lowered the inflammatory markers CRP and interleukin-6 by 32% and 30%, respectively…” 3*.

May help with arthritis and joint pain Because most types of arthritis involve inflammation of the joints, it makes sense that pomegranate helps with arthritic pain. The anti-inflammatory effects of the plant compounds found in pomegranate have shown positive results in laboratory studies involving mice as well in research using isolated cells. The results suggest that pomegranate extract can block enzymes known to damage joints in those suffering from osteoarthritis. Human research has been limited but will hopefully prove beneficial.  4*

Can pomegranates help fight against Prostate Cancer?

“…Laboratory studies have shown that pomegranate extract may help slow cancer cell reproduction and even induce apoptosis, or cell death, in cancer cells…”(1,5)*

The Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) is a marker in the blood for identifying and measuring prostate cancer in men. When PSA levels double in a short period of time, it indicates that a man is at a greater risk of dying from this type of cancer. A study involving men who drank 8 ounces (237 ml) of pomegranate juice per day, showed to increase the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) doubling time from 15 months to 54 months. A follow-up study using a type of pomegranate extract called POMx showed similar improvements.   This is significant in the fight against prostate cancer deaths.(1,5)*

Breast cancer benefits

In women, there were benefits when it came to breast cancer as well. Pomegranate extract may inhibit the reproduction and even possibly kill breast cancer cells. This evidence is limited to laboratory studies with more research and human studies needed before anything definitive can be claimed. (1,6)*.

Lower blood pressure and ward off heart disease

In another study, people who consumed 5 ounces of pomegranate juice daily for two weeks saw a significant reduction in blood pressure. Another study showed that punicic acid, which is the main fatty acid compound in pomegranate, may help protect against developing heart disease. 1*

 “…A 4-week study in 51 people with high triglyceride levels showed that 800 mg of pomegranate seed oil per day significantly lowered triglycerides and improved the triglyceride-HDL ratio …”1*

But that is not all. “…Another study looked at those with type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol and noted significant reductions in “bad” LDL cholesterol, as well as other improvements.In both animal and human studies, pomegranate juice was shown to protect LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, one of the key steps in the pathway towards heart disease…”1*

Might help your memory

Some evidence, primarily with studies in mice, suggests that pomegranate may improve memory in older adults, after surgery, and possibly protect against Alzheimer’s disease, most likely due to its anti-inflammatory properties.(1,7)*

If you want to reap the many health benefits pomegranates have to offer, eat the arils directly or drink pomegranate juice. The arils and seeds are delicious as an addition to a green or fruit salad or eaten by themselves. While you have to put in a little effort to peel the pomegranate and extract the seeds, it makes a bowl of pomegranate seeds all the more rewarding. *

To cut and eat a pomegranate, simply cut a circle around the top of the fruit to peel back the skin off. Then, cut vertical slices from top to bottom about 1 inch apart and peel the sections to expose the seeds. Empty seeds into a big bowl, and make sure to wear an apron because you are bound to get some of the vibrant red juice on your clothes. You can also buy pomegranate juice and powder with some incorporating the skin and really benefit from the punicalagin mentioned above.*

As the holidays get into full swing and the temptations of sweets abound, consider choosing a pomegranate instead for a sweet and colorful treat and get all the many health benefits that come with it, including a boost for the microbiome. To be sure you are fortifying your immune system this holiday, don’t forget to take your Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ daily.*

Healthiest wishes, and enjoy this special time of year.

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.com

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/12-proven-benefits-of-pomegranate#TOC_TITLE_HDR_4
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18590349/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23573120/
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19504467/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23320197/
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24962397/
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3789410/

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Nov 29 2020

Being grateful can mean the difference between good health and poor health.

Published by under General

Being grateful can mean the difference between good health and poor health.

“Start each day with a positive thought and a grateful heart” Roy T Bennett

Despite our recent holiday centered on giving thanks, more than a few people in our country might be feeling a little down and discouraged with the current state of affairs. During times of unhappiness and grief, it is more important than ever to remember all the good things in our lives and take a moment to inhale all that is good and exhale anything negative. After all, the things you might be unhappy about or take for granted might be the thing that someone else is praying they could have. We are all incredibly lucky and research shows it could benefit our health when we focus on the good rather than the bad.

Being grateful is good for your health. When we are grateful over time, we feel happier, less stressed and as we covered in our last blog, stress plays a negative role when it comes to the microbiome. In return, the health of our microbiome can affect our mood and susceptibility to depression.

Keep your eyes open to your mercies. The man who forgets to be thankful has fallen asleep in life.

-Robert Louis Stevenson

 “,,,In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships…”1*

When we feel gratitude, we experience a thankful appreciation for what we have received in our lives and this can be physical or intangible. We acknowledge goodness. In so doing, we usually recognize that the source of that goodness comes in some part from something greater or outside of our selves. This in turn helps us to connect to a power greater than ourselves whether it is other people, nature, or a higher power.1*.

“….Acknowledging the good you already have in your life is the foundation for future abundance…”        

 -Eckhart Tolle

In a study regarding gratitude performed by psychologists Dr. Robert A. Emmons of UC Davis and Dr. Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami, they asked participants to write a few sentences every week which focused on one of three topics…one, the things they were grateful for during the past week, two, daily irritations or things they didn’t like and thirdly, events that had made an impression on them, good or bad. At the end of 10 weeks, the participants who wrote about gratitude reported feeling better about their lives and felt more optimistic, exercised more and had fewer doctor visits, as opposed to those who focused on sources of negativity and aggravation.1*

Similar studies demonstrated that employees whose managers showed gratitude towards them with a simple “thank you” worked harder, and in relationships where partners showed gratitude for each other, they got along better and worked out their problems better.1*

In other research, studies have shown that those who are more grateful reported fewer health problems such as digestive issues to include stomach aches, headaches, respiratory infections, and they slept better. But there is the question, are grateful people healthier or are healthier people more grateful? 2* 

In case you are having a hard time feeling grateful after such a very difficult year, know that you are not alone. According to a new national survey from the American Psychological Association, stresses from COVID-19 as well as stress related to the economy, health care, racism, and the presidential election are taking a major toll on the mental health of our country, and sadly, it is affecting our youngest generation the hardest. A recent Harris Poll reveals that nearly 8 in 10 adults or 60% say that the Covid-19 pandemic is a significant source of stress in their lives while “…3 in 5 (60%) say the number of issues America faces is overwhelming to them…”2*

For the younger generations it is even worse…”…By generation, 34% of Gen Z adults report worse mental health, followed by Gen X (21%), millennials (19%), boomers (12%) and older adults (8%). Gen Z adults are the most likely to report experiencing common symptoms of depression, with more than 7 in 10 noting that in the prior two weeks they felt so tired that they sat around and did nothing (75%), felt very restless (74%), found it hard to think properly or concentrate (73%), felt lonely (73%), or felt miserable or unhappy (71%)…”3*

During this pandemic, our current generation of kids has had to make sacrifices that the rest of us haven’t had to make. Things such as giving up social interaction with their friends, in-person schooling where socialization takes place, graduations, and proms. Even the simple act of spending time with their friends has changed. Compound this with the toxic political environment they are witnessing, the negative behavior of adults around them, social media and the uncertainty of their futures. This is truly a recipe for a very unhappy group of young people.3*

Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining. It bores everyone else, does you no good and doesn’t solve any problems…” Zig Ziglar

So next time you feel like complaining or whining or fighting or criticizing or can’t remember what is good in your life, take a pause and be grateful for even the smallest things. Do your part to add positivity to the world and not negativity. We all need a boost, especially the young people and if we can’t come together and be happy, then this negative cycle will most likely continue.

“If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

Be grateful. Do it for yourself, those around you, and most importantly your health!

From all of us at Body Biotics™, Int’l, Corp., we hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving. We are grateful to you!

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.com

Resources:

  1. https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/giving-thanks-can-make-you-happier#:~:text=In%20positive%20psychology%20research%2C%20gratitude,adversity%2C%20and%20build%20strong%20relationships.
  2. https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/is_gratitude_good_for_your_health
  3. https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2020/10/stress-mental-health-crisis

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Nov 15 2020

Low-stress levels are good for your gut and a healthy gut is good for your mood

Published by under probiotic supplements,Stress

Low-stress levels are good for your gut and a healthy gut is good for your mood.

Science shows that there is a direct correlation between gut bacteria and brain chemistry.(1,2)*

So you’ve got stress in your life. Don’t we all! If we all survive this year, I’m pretty sure we can survive anything. This year could be coined the ‘Year of Stress’ and it would be an accurate description. But from a health perspective, it is no joke. Stress really does impact our microbiome and our health as a whole. 

Stress affects our gut bacteria. And, the health of the gut can affect our physical and mental health. The amount of stress you have in your life can have a direct impact on gut bacteria beginning a vicious cycle of poor gut health caused by stress which then in turn leads to more mental duress. Paying close attention to this fact and treating your microbiome with care and eliminating as much stress as possible can really benefit our long term health.(1,2)**

So while the bacteria residing in our guts can help stabilize and even boost our mood and our mental health, it can also hurt it and make it worse. There are numerous studies that have demonstrated that psychological stress suppresses beneficial bacteria in the microbiome. “…When the body experiences stress, it causes a cascade of events that are designed to help us escape imminent danger. It shuts down non-essential activities like sexual desire, reproduction and digestion, and uses chemical messengers to direct its resources and energy to the brain and muscles. This has repercussions for the gut microbiome too…”(1,2)*

When we have an unbalanced or unhealthy microbiome, it can directly affect our mood because unfriendly bacteria can play a part in anxiety and stress by the way they behave in the gut. When the balance of friendly bacteria is favorable, they can play a positive role by “…enhancing our resilience to stressful events…”but if the ecosystem is not balanced or is in a state of dysbiosis, their activities can play negatively on our mental health.2*

“…Research has found that tweaking the balance between beneficial and disease-causing bacteria in an animal’s gut can alter its brain chemistry and lead it to become either bolder or more anxious. The brain can also exert a powerful influence on gut bacteria; as many studies have shown, even mild stress can tip the microbial balance in the gut, making the host more vulnerable to infectious disease and triggering a cascade of molecular reactions that feedback to the central nervous system…”1*

When the microbiome is in a state of dysbiosis, it means that the gut microbiome “…is not able to control the growth and activities of opportunistic bacteria. When these microbes are too abundant, their activities can cause inflammation by triggering the body’s immune system…” This inflammation affects the central nervous system which can lead to symptoms of depression. Depression in and of itself can result in inflammation. 2*

Additionally, the human gut is often referred to as the “second brain” because it is the only organ in our bodies that actually has its own independent nervous system. Over ninety percent of the body’s serotonin production takes place here. With an intricate network of 100 million neurons embedded in the gut wall, the gut continues to function even after the vagus nerve, which connects the gut to the brain, is severed as demonstrated in mice studies. 1*

Serotonin regulates mood, happiness, and anxiety. Low serotonin levels are linked to depression. “…Gut bacteria also produce hundreds of neurochemicals that the brain uses to regulate basic physiological processes as well as mental processes such as learning, memory, and mood.1*

The microbiome plays such a fascinating and systemic role in our bodies. Poor physical and mental health caused by stress and an unhealthy gut requires us to take action to break the vicious cycle. It is up to us to take a proactive role in tipping the balance not only to lower the amount of stress we have but also to ensure we have a balanced microbiome. Concentrate on positive activities such as exercise, meditation, being outdoors, and healthy cooking over negative activities such as worrying about things you can’t control, too much screen time to include social media and 24-hour news, drinking too much alcohol, or other negative lifestyle behaviors. Focus your diet towards the healthy foods that boost your microbiome and don’t stray from your daily dose of Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™.*

Hang on as 2020 is almost over. Focus on the things you can control, and the rest, well…let it go!

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.con

 

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/09/gut-feeling
  2. https://atlasbiomed.com/blog/stress-anxiety-depression-microbiome/
  3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352289516300509
  4. https://www.cell.com/cell-reports/pdf/S2211-1247(20)30273-4.pdf

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Nov 01 2020

Another benefit of probiotics…they can save us money in the long run

Published by under probiotic supplements

Another benefit of probiotics…they can save us money in the long run. 1*

The study suggests that widespread probiotic use could save both individuals and the nation’s health care system a whole lot of money.1*

Our goal is to stay healthy. By staying on top of our health, we put ourselves on the offensive, rather than the defensive. At the core of this offensive play is keeping our guts balanced and in optimal health, therefore keeping our immune system at its strongest.*

As we know by now, taking Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ is not a fad or trend. It is a way of life that so many of our customers have come to know and depend on for daily health. Their testimonials say it all. It explains why we have built a community of health-conscious individuals passionate about a product that has been around since way before many people in the US had even heard about probiotics. They understand that when the gut is healthy, the rest of the body follows.*

And this health plan extends beyond good digestion, clear skin, elevated mood, and being forearmed against disease and illness. If you’ve suffered from an illness, you know the relief and contentment that a clean bill of health brings. You’ve heard the expression…” when you have your health you have it all”. When we are healthy, it brings peace of mind. We worry less and presumably enjoy a happier, better quality of life.*

Additionally, it means fewer doctor visits, tests, and medications which translates to less money and time spent on the individual as well as system-wide levels.  With the rising cost of health care and health insurance in our country, this is more pertinent than ever. That is the premise of a study from August of 2019, in which researchers developed an economic model that showed that widespread probiotic use in our country would bring significant cost savings to both individuals and the health care system as a whole.1*

According to this study, “…General probiotic use in the U.S. could save the health care payer and the economy around $1.4 billion in medical bills and lost productivity due to acute respiratory tract infections (RTIs). RTIs, which include influenza-like illnesses (ILIs), which range in symptoms from a mild cold to a more serious flu While most resolve on their own, may result in a high number of medical visits and the costs weigh heavily on our health care system.1*

The study, which was a systematic review by York Health Economics Consortium (YHEC) and Cochrane Collaborative, revealed that probiotic use was connected to a lower number and a shorter duration of influenza-like illnesses, antibiotic courses, and the number of missed days from work. The researchers created a model to outline the estimated cost savings of general probiotic use in the U.S.  They took into account demographics for age, whether people were smokers, vaccinated, and how much time people spent in shared indoor environments.1*

Using data provided during the 2017-2018 flu season from the CDC and other national databases, they estimated the number of ILI cases, their duration, and the costs as a result of doctor visits and days missed from school or work. Their analysis demonstrated that “…if everyone in the U.S. took probiotics, health care payers would save $373 million in RTI-associated medical bills in one year. These savings include the cost of more than two million courses of antibiotic prescriptions averted and correspond to a decrease of 54.5 million sick days. When counting the savings from reduced productivity loss of 4.2 million workdays, the total savings for society would amount to $1.4 billion…”1*

While this study focused on respiratory Illnesses and colds, we know by taking Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ along with other preventative health measures such as a diet high in fiber and low in sugar, regular exercise, lots of water, consistent sleep, less stress, and annual wellness checks, insure our bodies against various illness and health issues. This also applies to the current pandemic and the novel coronavirus (Covid-19). While there is still no cure or vaccine, we can only surmise that a healthy and strong immune system (along with washing hands, social distancing and wearing a mask), is your best defense to avoid it or get through it with minimal pain and suffering. Stay healthy now to avoid health issues later. And the cost savings to staying healthy is just an added bonus for us all.

 Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190828092455.htm
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/14557292/
  3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/8-health-benefits-of-probiotics#TOC_TITLE_HDR_8

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Oct 18 2020

Too much Sugar is Not Good for Your Health Part 3

Published by under Sugar

Too much Sugar is Not Good for Your Health
Take these simple steps to minimize it in your diet.

Two hundred years ago, the average person living in the US consumed two pounds of sugar in a year. In 1970, that number increased to 123 pounds per year. Today, the average American eats almost 152 pounds of sugar in just one year. This is equivalent to 3 pounds (or 6 cups) of sugar in one week! ”… According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the maximum amount of Added Sugars you should eat is 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons) for men and 100 calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons) for women…” To put this into perspective, a 16oz coca-cola has 52 grams of sugar. (1,2,3)*

Why has there been such an increase in sugar consumption? A couple of weeks ago we talked about how Added Sugars have steadily crept into our diets via processed foods over the last half-century and the fact that it has become such an issue that the FDA now requires these Added Sugars to be listed on a separate line on food labels. This change now allows us to discern how much sugar is found naturally in foods and which sugars are added just for additional taste.1*

The combination of Added Sugars in processed foods and our turn towards fast and quick foods has really packed a punch to the American public. We are fatter and sicker than ever before and it seems many people have fallen victim to this new way of life. After all, it’s easy to think you are making a healthful choice by buying granola bars, sweet yogurt, and apple juice for your kids but in actuality, you are buying foods packed with Added Sugars and calories. *

Sugar is empty calories with zero nutritional value. Too much sugar leads to disruption of the microbiome, offsets our metabolism, can lead to weight gain and obesity, not to mention cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.(1,2)*

Know the difference between added and naturally occurring sugars

It is important to make the distinction between Added Sugars and those sugars that occur naturally in such foods as fruits and vegetables. Whole foods such as fruits and vegetables contain fiber, water and various micronutrients that are good for us as opposed to Added sugar which is man produced and can be in the form of sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, maltose, fructose, dextrose, dextrose, syrup, cane sugar, corn syrup and a number of other names that we discussed in the first blog in our sugar series. 1*

US dietary guidelines advise people to limit their intake to less than 10% of their daily calorie intake. But when added sugars are in so many foods, how can we do this? We can look back at what our ancestors were eating 200 years ago to help get our answers.1*

Ideas for minimizing the sugar in your daily diet

First and foremost, cook all your meals at home, choosing whole foods*

Avoid processed foods and fast food *

Don’t add sugar to your coffee, oatmeal, or other foods.*

Avoid soft drinks and fruit juices (which contain as much sugar as soft drinks). Choose whole fruit instead. Sliced apples with cinnamon, mangoes with lime are sweet and delicious whole-food options*

Read food labels…added sugars are in such foods as pasta sauces, salad dressings, and barbeque sauces. If a packaged food contains sugar in the first 3 ingredients or has more than one type of sugar listed, avoid it*

Limit your consumption of cookies, candies, and cakes. They are called treats for a reason, so treat yourself only on occasion*

Avoid canned fruits in syrup…choose fresh fruit instead*

Don’t be tricked by low-fat or diet foods. These foods tend to be higher in sugar to enhance taste *

Make water your beverage of choice*

Drink unsweetened tea, sparkling water, herbal teas or coffee all of which have no sugar *

Use stevia, which is a zero-calorie alternative to sugar*

Even if you are not diabetic or overweight, long term sugar intake can catch up with you. Don’t be fooled by marketing and read food labels. Eat whole foods and prepare your meals at home utilizing fresh ingredients. Keep your microbiome healthy and you’ll keep your whole body healthy. Supplementing with Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ is part of this overall healthy diet plan.*

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.com

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/nhp/documents/sugar.pdf
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-sugar-per-day#TOC_TITLE_HDR_9
  3. https://www.coca-colacompany.com/faqs/how-much-sugar-is-in-coca-cola#

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Oct 04 2020

Sugar…the sweet killer

Published by under Sugar

Sugar…the sweet killer.
It tastes so good so why is sugar so bad for our microbiome and our health?

In our last blog, we talked about how added sugars can be found in so many foods in the grocery store. In fact, it had become such an issue that the FDA required food manufacturers to differentiate between sugars found naturally in a product and those sugars that are added to the product to enhance flavor. 1*

“…In the US, added sugars account for up to 17% of the total calorie intake of adults and up to 14% for children…” yet dietary guidelines say that we should limit the calories we consume from added sugars to less than 10% each day. To put it in perspective, “…Just one 16-ounce (473-ml) can of soda contains 52 grams of sugar, which equates to more than 10% of your daily calorie consumption, based on a 2,000-calorie diet…” (2,3)*

There are important reasons to not eat too much sugar and it goes well beyond weight gain. It is a major disruptor of the microbiome and the cause behind chronic diseases and many health issues. Let’s explore why we should limit sugar in our diets.

It messes with the microbiome

At the core of our health is the gut, and as we know, sugar is really the enemy. It is food for the unwanted bacteria and when we eat too much sugar, the unfriendlies populate like crazy. And the more they populate, the more we crave sugar to feed them. Candida Albicans overgrowth is very tough to get rid of and to do so requires stringent diet changes and a therapeutic dose of Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ over a course of months. The result of this overgrowth is feelings of great fatigue, foggy head, depression, canker sores, crankiness, and more. And, if left unchecked, it can result in many other issues as described below.

 It puts us at greater risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes

There is a clear link between too much sugar and the risk of diabetes. Obesity, often caused by eating too much sugar and processed foods is considered to be the main reason. Diabetes rates have doubled worldwide over the last 30 years, and it coincides with an increase in the development of high sugar and processed foods. Prolonged, high sugar intake leads to a risk of developing a resistance to insulin, the hormone produced by the pancreas which is where blood sugar is regulated. According to a study of over 175 countries, for every 150 calories of sugar consumed daily, diabetes grew by 1.1%.(2,3)*

 It’s a leading factor in weight gain and belly fat.

Too much fructose consumption may cause resistance to leptin which is an important hormone that regulates hunger. Consuming too much sugar is also linked to an increased amount of visceral fat, a deep belly fat, that is associated with conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. When our guts are healthy, it is amazing to see how this belly fat goes away.2*

It is not good for the heart

The number one cause of death worldwide is heart disease and there is a direct correlation to high sugar diets. Studies show that diets high in sugar lead to inflammation, higher triglycerides, increased blood sugar, and blood pressure levels which are all risk factors in heart disease. Too much sugar, especially from sugar-sweetened drinks has been linked to atherosclerosis which is a disease characterized by fatty, artery-clogging deposits. While for years we were led to believe these deposits were the result of too much fat in the diet, we have since learned that sugar is the culprit. 2*

“…A study in over 30,000 people found that those who consumed 17–21% of calories from added sugar had a 38% greater risk of dying from heart disease, compared to those consuming only 8% of calories from added sugar…”4*

 It causes acne

Sugary foods with a high glycemic index raise blood sugar more rapidly than foods with a lower glycemic index. Quick spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels can cause increased androgen secretion and oil production as well as inflammation…all of which play a part in acne development. In a study of 2300 teens, those who frequently consumed added sugar showed a 30% higher risk of having acne, and in another study teens from rural communities who ate a more home-cooked diet as opposed to their peers in urban areas who ate more fast and packaged foods, had no acne compared to their urban living peers. 5* 

It may set you up for Cancer

The connection between consuming too much sugar and cancer is a complex one. But diets high in sugary foods and beverages can cause obesity, increase inflammation, and can cause insulin resistance, all of which raise your risk of developing cancer.(2,3)*

“…A study in over 430,000 people found that added sugar consumption was positively associated with an increased risk of esophageal cancer, pleural cancer and cancer of the small intestine…”6*

It’s an underlying cause of depression

“…Researchers believe that blood sugar swings, neurotransmitter dysregulation, and inflammation may all be reasons for sugar’s detrimental impact on mental health…” When we eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and good protein, it fees our good bacteria which benefits serotonin production and therefore helps improve our mood. Diets high in sugar and processed foods feed the bad bacteria, interfering with serotonin production resulting in an increased chance of developing depression. 2*

“…A study following 8,000 people for 22 years showed that men who consumed 67 grams or more of sugar per day were 23% more likely to develop depression than men who ate less than 40 grams per day. Another study of over…”69,000 women demonstrated that those with the highest intakes of added sugars had a significantly greater risk of depression, compared to those with the lowest intakes..” (7,8)*

It speeds up skin aging

Consuming a diet that is high in sugar and refined carbohydrates leads to the production of AGEs or Advanced Glycation End products. These compounds are a reaction between sugars and proteins coming together in the body and are believed to play a role in skin aging. These compounds damage elastin and collagen…the proteins which help our skin stretch and keep it looking youthful. 2*

It accelerates cellular aging

Along the same line of skin, aging is cellular aging. Consuming too much sugar has shown to accelerate telomere shortening which increases cellular aging. “…Telomeres are structures found at the end of chromosomes, which are molecules that hold part or all of your genetic information…” They act as protective caps so that chromosomes don’t deteriorate or fuse together. As we age, telomeres shorten causing cells to age and even malfunction. Unhealthy lifestyle choices speed up this process. 2*

It zaps your energy

When we eat food high in added sugar but deficient in fiber, fat, or protein, we experience quick spikes in our blood sugar and insulin levels, followed by a sharp drop in blood sugar. When we have constant blood sugar swings, it can be energy draining. Instead, choose carbs that are low in added sugar but rich in fiber. Apples, nuts, fruits, vegetables, yogurts, and nut butter are great sources for providing a prolonged, consistent energy level. 2*

It can lead to fatty liver

A high intake of fructose has been consistently linked to an increased risk of fatty liver. Glucose and other types of sugar are taken up by various cells throughout the body, while fructose is almost exclusively broken down by the liver. This has been linked to an increased risk of fatty liver. Too much fructose overloads your liver and leads to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, a condition caused by excessive fat build up in the liver. (2,3)*

It can cause cognitive decline

High-sugar diets can lead to impaired memory and have been linked to an increased risk of dementia. When we have Candida overgrowth, it causes fogginess and fatigue. 2*

 It can increase your risk of kidney disease

Having consistently high blood sugar levels can cause damage to the delicate blood vessels in your kidneys. This can lead to an increased risk of kidney disease. (2,3)*

 It can cause cavities and other dental issues

Eating too much sugar can cause cavities. Bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar and release acid byproducts, which cause tooth demineralization. 2*

 It increases your risk of gout:

Gout, an inflammatory condition characterized by pain in the joints, can be exacerbated by eating too much-added sugars that raise uric acid levels in the blood. 2*

When you put your mind to it you can find lots of ways to limit the amount of sugar in your diet. It requires reading labels, paying attention, and a little commitment. Once you get used to leaving it out, you’ll crave it less. Check food labels to see which foods have the line item “Added Sugars” and avoid these foods when possible. Cooking at home and eating whole foods is a great way to avoid added sugar because you know what you are putting into your food. And fight the bad bacteria that feed off of sugar by supplementing your microbiome with the good bacteria found in Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™. 2*

Next time we will look at ideas, tips, and tricks for avoiding and limiting sugar in your diet.

Until then, healthiest wishes!

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.com

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/22/upshot/it-isnt-easy-to-figure-out-which-foods-contain-sugar.html
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/too-much-sugar#TOC_TITLE_HDR_7
  3. https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/how-sugar-affects-your-body
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24493081/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22070422/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3494407/
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28751637/
  8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26109579/

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Sep 13 2020

Added sugars must be Listed on Food Labels

Published by under General,Sugar

Added sugars in packaged foods must now be listed on food labels.

Knowing how much sugar and what kinds are in packaged foods has become a little easier with this food labeling requirement. 1*

We try to eat right. We focus on keeping our guts healthy. But sometimes despite our best efforts to eat right and stay healthy, we get sugar in our diets without even realizing it. Sometimes we choose to treat ourselves to an ice cream cone or a slice of birthday cake. But when you are trying your best to eat healthfully and then you find out that there is more sugar in something than you believed, you feel a little “tricked”.1*

While we know sugar is in candy, cookies, and sodas, it can also be in many packaged foods such as salad dressing, sauces, bread, crackers, and more. Because of this, the Food and Drug Administration made a change to the Nutrition Facts portion of food labels which was rolled out in 2018 for large food companies and 2019 for smaller companies to include a line item for “added sugar,” which you’ll find below the line for total sugar. This change was established to make a distinction between those sugars that occur naturally in food and the sugars that are added by food manufacturers to boost flavors.1*

This change came as a result of a detailed survey of packaged foods and drinks available for purchase in US grocery stores. The researchers, from the University of North Carolina, looked at every individual processed food in the store and found that 68 percent had added sugar. While some were products that were obvious sweet foods, not all were and included soups, pasta and barbeque sauces, fruit juices, and even meat products. 1*

If you are a label reader, which I hope you are, you might have thought you could identify when a product contains added sugar simply by reading the ingredients.  While many foods list sugar in their ingredients, many list alternate, unrecognizable words for sugar that are still basically sugar. While most of us are familiar with high-fructose corn syrup, and pure cane sugar, there are other words such as evaporated cane juice, agave, rice syrup, clintose and dextrose, among other words that most people would not identify as sugar. Some of these words are: 1*

  • agave juice, nectar, syrup or sap
  • beet sugar
  • brown rice syrup
  • brown sugar
  • the cane juice, cane syrup, cane sugar
  • clintose
  • confectioners sugar and confectioners powdered sugar
  • corn glucose syrup, corn sweet, corn sweetener, corn syrup, high glucose corn syrup
  • date sugar
  • dextrose
  • drimol, dri mol, or dri-mol
  • drisweet, dri sweet or dri-sweet
  • dried raisin sweetener
  • edible lactose
  • flo malt, flo-malt, flomalt
  • fructose, fructose sweetener
  • glaze and icing sugar, glaze icing sugar
  • golden syrup
  • gomme
  • granular sweetener
  • granulated sugar
  • hi-fructose corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup
  • honey
  • honibake, honi bake, honi-bake, honi flake, honi-flake
  • invert sugar, inverted sugar
  • isoglucose
  • isomaltulose
  • kona ame, kona-ame
  • lactose
  • liquid sweetener
  • malt, malt sweetener, malt syrup
  • maltose
  • maple, maple sugar, maple syrup
  • mizu ame, mizu-ame, mizuame
  • molasses
  • nulomoline
  • powdered sugar
  • rice syrup
  • sorghum, sorghum syrup
  • starch sweetener
  • sucanat
  • sucrose
  • sucrovert
  • sugar beet
  • sugar invert
  • sweet n neat
  • table sugar
  • treacle
  • trehalose
  • tru sweet
  • turbinado sugar
  • versatose1*

According to the paper’s author, Barry Popkin who is a professor of nutrition at the University of North Carolina, the “…wide variety of sugars is not always meant to confound consumers…” Rather, food scientists choose the various sugar types to give their products the optimal flavor and texture. While some do better in soft drinks, those same sugars might not be as good in bakery items. Price is also a factor.1*

Another type of sugar is fruit juice concentrates. These are juices “…that have been stripped of nearly everything but sugar and evaporated…”. Many foods that we would think are healthful contain fruit juice concentrate or apple juice concentrate. This is simply sugar. With the new labeling requirements, this has become clearer to understand.1*

Sugar in high amounts is just not good for us so this labeling is important. Consuming too much sugar puts us at risk of developing many health issues to include type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity, as well as accelerated skin aging, acne and depression, among others. Too much sugar is not good for our microbiome as it serves to feed the unhealthy bacteria in our guts, especially Candida Albicans, an aggressive unfriendly bacteria. When an overgrowth of Candida occurs, it can make us feel lethargic, depressed, and fatigued, and it becomes very difficult to battle. It leaves us with intense sugar cravings, as that is what feeds Candida. The best way to avoid this is by eliminating added sugars from our diets, and increasing friendly bacteria found such as those found in Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™. (1,2)*

These new guidelines should help us all as we navigate food labels and continue our pursuit of a healthy diet. Being the most informed we can be, will only help us in our charge to be at our best. Limiting sugar and keeping the microbiome healthy with foods high in fiber, lots of fruits and vegetables, and limiting unhealthy lifestyle habits are all part of this. And of course, staying on course with Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™. *

Making a concerted effort to eat right is so important and takes a lot of will power and discipline. Being undermined by hidden sugars in our food is not part of that program. I hope this information is helpful in your pursuit of good health. Next time we will explore further the unwanted health risks of having too much sugar in our diets.*

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

 

www.bodybiotics.com

Resources:

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/22/upshot/it-isnt-easy-to-figure-out-which-foods-contain-sugar.html
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/too-much-sugar#section6

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Aug 30 2020

It May be Time for a Gut Check

Published by under probiotic supplements

Is it time for a gut check?
Evaluate your body and know when you need to hit the reset button.

Are you in tune with your body? Do you pay attention to when it hurts, when it is tired, and when it is getting run down? Do you recognize the clues that tell you when you are vulnerable to getting sick and when your gut is out of balance? When you are in touch with your body, it will send you signals that are loud and clear. We just have to listen. *

The signals can be different for everyone. It might be getting a canker sore in your mouth or a cold sore on your lip. Others may have acne or eczema breakouts. Perhaps it is achy joints as a result of inflammation. Extreme fatigue, irritability, or depression might be another sign. Yeast infections in women are a sign of Candida overgrowth. Sometimes it is just feeling out of sorts or not yourself. Maybe it’s a scratchy throat, runny nose or headache. Only you know when you don’t feel right, or when your body needs a break or when your microbiome is out of balance.*

When this happens, it is time to stop and do a gut check and devote time and effort to “resetting” your microbiome, your physical health and your immune system. If we don’t take the time to do this and ignore the signals, we make ourselves vulnerable to illness. When we press on, despite our own body’s screaming out for help, we are just asking for trouble. If you find yourself in this state, it’s time for rejuvenating, rebalancing, detoxifying and recharging your mind, body, and spirit. It is important for keeping your immune system strong and illness and disease at bay.*

The first step is to detoxify.

Giving yourself a gentle cleanse by eliminating all processed foods, meats, preservatives and other chemicals from your diet, and sticking purely to fruits and vegetables or even just pressed juices can be incredibly cleansing. Some people prefer to fast, just drinking water or liquids for the chosen duration.  Add Body Biotics™ Aloe Pure gel tabs to help with elimination and gently remove the build-up of toxins and purification from the digestive tract. You can research and choose the best way to cleanse and detoxify based on your health and comfort level. *

Reset your circadian rhythm.

Establishing a set schedule for your sleep pattern is an important step towards getting and staying healthy. It is easy to get off our circadian rhythm for many reasons, especially if we are running ragged with work or just fun. But when feeling run down, getting regular sleep is an important step to getting your microbiome and your immune system back in check.*

Increase your intake of Body Biotics Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia.  With a clean slate, adding back the important friendly bacteria to your gut is crucial. Instead of just a daily maintenance dose of 1 or 2 capsules a day, increase to a therapeutic dose of 4 to 6 capsules per day for a week. This will repopulate your gut with the important bacteria needed to starve out the unhealthy bacteria and rebalance your microbiome. *

Ditch the junk food and go whole food.

You’ve done your purifying cleanse, you’ve eliminated the foods that are unhealthy for you, you are setting a healthy circadian rhythm, and have increased the healthy bacteria in your gut by increasing your daily intake of Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia. Now you are ready to add foods back into your diet that will feed the healthy bacteria. Now is the time to stick to whole foods, foods high in fiber and whole grains along with plenty of fruits and vegetables high in antioxidants. Avoid alcohol, processed foods, sugar and fatty meats. *

Add Body Genesis™ Liquid Minerals

There are at a minimum 90 vital nutrients which our bodies need to sustain health and wellbeing. The amino acids, major and trace minerals, vitamins, and other nutritional factors that are found in Body Biotics™ Body Genesis™ Liquid Minerals support our cells which then create the building blocks for all metabolic functions. When the cells are deprived of these essential nutrients we will experience a break-down of these functions. If significant enough, this will lead to the onset of degenerative diseases or the manifestation of some related defects. This is an important addition to every diet.*  

Drink plenty of water

Drinking plenty of water during every step of this process is very important. Water keeps our organs functioning and helps our bodies to flush toxins.*

Exercise…of course!

These simple steps will reset your body, your microbiome, and your immune system. Supporting your immune system right now is your best defense against getting sick.  You will not only feel better, but you will also look better too and your body’s immune system will be fortified. *

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-to-detox-your-body#section6
  2. http://www.bodybiotics.com

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Aug 16 2020

Dogs are being Trained to Sniff out Positive cases of COVID-19

Published by under General

Dogs are being trained to “sniff out” positive cases of  COVID-19. 1*
With their acute sense of smell, dogs continue to alert humans to dangers of all kinds.  

A few weeks ago, we talked about how dogs serve us in ways that benefit both our mental and physical health. Having the love and companionship of a good pet can do wonders. Dogs have been loyal companions for humans and have served us in various ways over the years and when trained properly, can do remarkable things.

They act as emotional support pets and service animals. They alert us when someone approaches our home. They can sniff out IEDs on the battlefield and narcotics in airports, borders, and on the streets. They can help detect hypoglycemia in diabetics and can be trained to alert their person when they are about to have an epileptic seizure. They can even sniff out some types of cancer. And now, dog trainers have been able to teach dogs to detect whether a person is positive for COVID-19. Their great potential in dealing with the current pandemic could make a big difference in curtailing the spread of this virus.1*

According to PetMD, a dog’s sense of smell is 100,000 times more powerful than a human’s and on average has 220 million scent receptors. They can smell separately with each nostril and have the ability to breathe in and out at the same time. The dogs chosen for this work have been mainly German Shepards and hound dogs among others. In experimental trials, they were able, with their keen sense of smell, to detect the virus in people who were positive, but asymptomatic. The possibility to have trained dogs able to detect people who are positive yet asymptomatic could be a game-changer for preventing people from unwittingly going out in public, getting on planes or entering crowded situations and unknowingly spreading the virus to others.(1,2,3)*

The pilot project led by the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, the Hannover Medical School and the German Armed Forces trained dogs by using samples of sweat from people who are infected with the virus. They found that “…if properly trained, dogs were able to discriminate between human saliva samples infected with SARS-CoV-2 and non-infected samples with a 94% success rate overall…” (1,2)*

Across the globe, coronavirus detector dogs are being trained in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Chile, Argentina, Brazil, France, and Belgium. In the UAE, detector dogs have already been stationed at various airports and have started helping to control the spread of COVID-19. It is useful in many scenarios, such as screening people at airports and state borders, large concert or sporting events, schools, as well as monitoring caretakers and employees working with those in high-risk categories before they enter their workplace. It benefits these workers so they wouldn’t need to be continually tested for the virus with a nasal swab. The dogs would do the testing.1*

How can a dog smell a virus? While the researchers don’t know exactly what the dog is smelling, they believe they are detecting a complex mix of volatile organic compounds or VOCs that are given off in sweat samples. They believe they smell “…a particular profile as opposed to an individual compound…” According to Maren von Koeckritz-Blickwede, a professor at the university involved with the study, they believe the dogs are able to do detect the virus because “…the metabolic processes of an infected person completely change…”4*

They use sweat as opposed to saliva for the tests as it is not considered to be infectious for COVID-19 so it is believed to be of less risk for those handling the samples. 1*

In experimental studies, dogs have not been shown to be able to replicate the coronavirus, and are therefore not a source of infection. But to be careful, the device that is used to train the dogs prevents the dogs from coming into direct contact with the sweat sample. The animal’s nose goes into a stainless steel cone, with the sample in a separate receptacle, which allows them to sniff the VOCs, without making physical contact with the sweat. This is an additional precaution for both the trainer and the dog. Additionally, the dogs undergo regular checkups to make sure there are no antibodies and so far, none have been detected.  

The next step in this training would be to have the dogs differentiate between the coronavirus and other viruses or the flu. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while dogs can get infected with Covid-19, there is no evidence that animals play a significant role in spreading the virus. Of any cases where they were potentially exposed, none have appeared to show any symptoms.4*

As medical professionals, researchers, scientists and other health care professionals from all over the world continue to work together to find a vaccine, treatments and accurate tests for this coronavirus, we are encouraged to do our part by staying socially distant, wearing a face mask in public, washing our hands. Keeping our immune systems strong is equally essential and that formula hasn’t changed…eat right, sleep enough, exercise, and keep your microbiome healthy with balanced nutrition, lots of fiber and a daily regimen of Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™. While these are tough times, continue to stay the course, be kind to others including strangers and be part of the solution not the problem.

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

 www.bodybiotics.com

Resources:

  1. https://theconversation.com/these-dogs-are-trained-to-sniff-out-the-coronavirus-most-have-a-100-success-rate-143756
  2. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-07-24/dogs-can-sniff-out-coronavirus-infections-german-study-shows
  3. https://www.petmd.com/dog/behavior/5-dog-nose-facts-you-probably-didnt-know
  4. https://www.cnbc.com/2020/07/24/trained-dogs-sniffed-out-covid-19-infections-with-high-accuracy-study.html

 

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Aug 15 2020

Is there a Connection between Vitamin D and Severity of COVID 19 cases?

Published by under General

Is there a connection between Vitamin D and the severity of COVID 19 cases?
Vitamin D is essential for good health but may also play a role in the fight against COVID-19.

Sunshine on your shoulders does more than make you happy, it makes you healthy. Getting adequate exposure to the sun helps our bodies manufacture this important vitamin ourselves.

Vitamin D sometimes referred to as the “sunshine vitamin” is produced in the skin when it is exposed to direct sunlight. It’s fat-soluble, and part of a family of compounds that includes vitamins D-1, D-2, and D-3. (1,2)*

Unlike other compounds, it isn’t actually a nutrient, but rather a hormone. It doesn’t occur naturally in very many foods, with the exception of egg yolks, salmon, and other fish to include sardines, and shrimp but can be found in “fortified” foods such as milk, orange juice, and cereal which contain a synthetic version. But Vitamin D is so unique in that our own bodies are the manufacturers of it. When our skin is exposed to the sun, we get much of the Vitamin D we need. And we don’t need to overdo it…just fifteen minutes of sunshine a day gives us adequate amounts of Vitamin D. (1,2)*

Vitamin D has several important functions. These include regulating the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, facilitating normal immune system function, helping build strong bones and teeth as well as improving resistance to diseases. 1*

There have been many studies looking at the benefits of Vitamin D intake. According to a 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Vitamin D may reduce your risk of multiple sclerosis. It may also decrease your chance of developing heart disease, based on some 2008 findings which were published in the journal Circulation. It also reduces the likelihood of developing the flu according to 2010 research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vitamin D also plays a role in boosting mood and fighting off depression. In another study, those taking a daily Vitamin D and calcium supplement were able to lose more weight than those who received a placebo supplement. It is believed that the extra calcium and vitamin D had an appetite-suppressing effect.1*

But in certain areas of the country and during different times of the year, or depending on your living situation, it is not always easy to get our Vitamin D through sunlight…some of the barriers to getting it are:

  • Using sunscreen
  • Living in areas with high pollution
  • Staying indoors
  • Big city life where buildings block our exposure to sunlight
  • Having darker skin. (Less Vitamin D is absorbed in skin with higher levels of melanin

Vitamin D has been getting a lot of buzz of late in regards to the Coronavirus. While “…most people are unlikely to be helped by it, many potentially could be…”, according to Dr. James Hamblin in his June 3rd article in The Atlantic, in which he responded to a question from a reader regarding this important Vitamin.

Vitamin D stands out as a dietary supplement that’s steadily gained attention and “actual scientific traction”.  In fact, taking it to mitigate the threat of COVID-19 was among the earlier suggestions which came out of early virus researchers in China. As early as February 2020, two researchers named Lei Zhang and Yunhui Liu from China Medical University were seeking out of the box approaches to fighting this virus that they feared would become a pandemic. (They were right). Based on prior knowledge of other coronaviruses, they examined research on all types of nutrients and minerals, from iron and omega-3 fatty acids to zinc and flavonoids, in the hopes that something might stand out. 2*

Among this research were Vitamin D deficiency and the populations being most affected by the virus. Even though very little sunlight is needed to avoid a deficiency, it is common for those who live in nursing facilities, hospitals, are stuck in the house (most of us during a shelter in place), or in prisons. The researchers noticed that the coronavirus mainly affected these same populations so it was thought possible that  “…Vitamin D could work as another therapeutic option for the treatment of this novel virus…”2*

But, there are many variables here. Indoor, crowded places are perfect breeding grounds for viral transmission, and those residing in nursing homes are mostly older and have preexisting conditions, whether they are Vitamin D deficient or not, making them more vulnerable to a severe case of COVID-19. 2*

There have been other connections to support the vitamin-D hypothesis. “…In April, a small study from the Philippines showed a correlation between vitamin-D levels and better outcomes for patients with the disease. In May, a study led by Vadim Backman, a professor at Northwestern University, found a similar correlation between severe vitamin-D deficiency and death rates among people with COVID-19. His research team found that, in general, people in countries with high COVID-19 mortality rates had lower levels of vitamin D compared with patients in countries that were not as severely affected…”2*

There is more supporting evidence to suggest a correlation. Vitamin D plays an important role in regards to the immune system, specifically in the “…maturation of some white blood cells…”  Low levels of vitamin D has shown to make people susceptible to various infectious diseases, to include upper respiratory tract infections.2*

In addition to fortifying the immune system, vitamin D may help prevent it from becoming overactive. Those with adequate vitamin-D levels were “…less likely to experience a cytokine storm, a misdirected inflammatory response that ultimately kills many people with COVID-19…” Vitamin D may decrease the risk of serious outcomes by helping to “…appropriately calibrate the inflammatory response…”2*

While clinical trials are underway, nothing has been proven regarding Vitamin D and its effect on one’s reaction to COVID -19. Researchers have suggested that in the meantime it is a good precautionary measure to take small amounts of Vitamin D, especially if you are not getting it through the sunshine. Many people are staying in more than usual and assisted living and nursing home residents have a hard time getting the natural dose of sunshine they need. Health officials in the UK feel strongly enough about it that they have suggested people supplement with Vitamin D for the remainder of the pandemic. Scientists agree it can’t hurt in low doses and even if it helps some, it is worth it.(1,2)*  

The Institute of Medicine recommends that those aged one year of age to 70 years take in 600 IUs daily in order to maintain a healthy level of Vitamin D in the blood. Those over the age of 70 should get 800 IUs a day. Unless you are deficient, to begin with, you most likely will not see any benefit. You can find out if you are deficient through a blood test. Taking excessive amounts of Vitamin D can be harmful, so don’t take too much. And, it won’t prevent you from getting COVID-19, but it might mitigate the severity of the disease. Taking Vitamin D or any other supplement, including Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™ can benefit your health in other important ways, primarily to boost your immune system but IT IS NOT A REPLACEMENT for social distancing, mask-wearing or handwashing! 3*

From all of us at Body Biotics™, we hope you are staying strong, safe, and healthy. Get outside for daily sunshine and exercise whenever possible. Follow preventative measures to help prevent the spread of this virus and we will all get through this!

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.com

Resources:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/benefits-vitamin-d#food-sources
  2. https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2020/06/paging-dr-hamblin-can-vitamin-d-stop-coronavirus/612547/
  3. https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/20200518/more-vitamin-d-lower-risk-of-severe-covid-19

 

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