Elemental Calcium: Answering Your Questions On Essential Vitamins and Minerals
Q:What’s the most effective and economical type of elemental calcium on the market?
While we will answer many questions in this article, elemental calcium will be highlighted. What is elemental calcium? Does elemental calcium make a difference in your system compared to other calcium supplements? Is it important how much elemental calcium you are getting in your supplements? If you are not taking a supplement, are there alternative places where you may get elemental calcium? What can elemental calcium really do to improve your health and change your life. If these are questions you have please continue reading. A: The most common form of calcium is calcium carbonate, which contains 41% elemental calcium. Calcium citrate contains only 21% elemental calcium, but has better absorption. On the other hand, it is quite a bit more expensive than calcium carbonate.
Alternative sources of elemental calcium include eggshells or bone meal. There is some question, however, about using calcium from these because of the source of both of these products. Eggshells may be contaminated. Some people have also been dissatisfied with bone meal due to the presence of lead in some bone meal products. Stay with what’s proven and what works. Calcium carbonate remains the most popular option for elemental calcium because it is economical and it works. So, utilize this supplement as the best option to increase elemental calcium in your diet.
Q: How can someone get enough calcium if he or she is allergic to milk?
A: There are excellent food sources rich in calcium not related to milk products.
These include tofu and broccoli. Most people who are allergic to milk can consume a small amount of yogurt, ice cream or cheese. If a person can eat cheese and pizza regularly, then chances are that he or she is getting a healthy dose of calcium along the way. The only problem is that along with the calcium is the fat in the cheese that is not too healthy in excessive amounts.
Also, calcium supplements are a cheap and effective way to insure adequate calcium intake. The minimum requirement for calcium in young adults is 1,000 mg per day. It is never too late to take calcium, so start it now.
Q: Is it true that for vitamins to work for anti-aging purposes I have to take much more than the RDA? Can someone take too much?
A: The amount of vitamins and minerals taken for anti-aging purposes is believed to be higher than the RDA. Nonetheless, there are several things to be careful about. A person who is aspirins or blood thinners on a long-term basis, (which is commonly in post-stroke patients) should not take extra fish oil or ginkgo of more than 160 mg a day. Niacin should also not be taken in more than 3 gms a day as it may cause liver toxicity. Calcium in excess of 2,000-3,000 mg can reduce absorption of magnesium, zinc, and phosphate, so any high calcium supplements need to be balanced with intakes of zinc (30 mg) and magnesium (400 mg). There are also some studies that indicate high intakes of fish oil in the range of 3-5 mg may damage the immune function. Note, however, that this is far above the optimum amount taken by most for anti-aging purposes.
Q: What is the Mediterranean diet and how does it benefit the anti-aging program?
A: The Mediterranean diet, as the name implies, mimics the diet currently consumed by people in the Mediterranean. Specifically, it is a diet comprising of 50% complex carbohydrate such as fruits and vegetables, 25% fat (from fish sources) and 25% protein (from a plant source such as soy). It should be noted that the Mediterranean people use olive oil extensively as well. Olive oil is a rich source of Omega-3, an essential fatty acid. A rich source of Omega-3 fatty acid lies in the deep-water fish such as salmon and tuna. The 25% protein should come from vegetable sources or non-red meat animal sources. Vegetable sources include that from soy, such as tofu. In addition to the Mediterranean diet, our diet should also include digestive enzyme as well as plenty of non-chlorinated clear water.
Q: How can anyone recommend more essential fatty acid (like fish) when fat is said to be bad for our heart and causes atherosclerosis. Isn’t there a conflict here?
A: Fats are essential for life and good health. While fats have more calories per gram compared to proteins and carbohydrates, it doesn’t mean that one gains more weight eating it. A meal of carbohydrates uses the calories for immediate energy or stores the energy as fat. If someone eats protein and fat, the body uses these foods first for building materials such as cells, enzymes, and hormones, leaving fewer calories to be used up as energy or stored as fat. The important thing is to be careful in the choice of fat. Saturated fat (commonly found in butter and animal products, along with palm and coconut oils) clogs up the blood vessels, increases cholesterol level in the blood and causes heart disease. Most nuts, olive oil, and canola have mono-unsaturated fat, which are not harmful to the body. Fish oil, essential fatty acids, evening primrose oil, flaxseed oil are examples of polyunsaturated fat, which are good for the body.
Q: Why is pasta “feel good” food as compared to a salad?
A: When you eat carbohydrates (or use stimulants) it raises insulin level. This results in the rapid increase in serotonin from the brain’s storage supply. This increased level of serotonin, in turn, causes mood and body function improvements. However, this can get out of hand when people binge on carbohydrates, which cause the insulin level to rise and stimulate the excessive temporary rush of stored serotonin. In binging, the storage supply is used up quickly and this causes the serotonin to drop, making the person who just felt great, feel “down”. It’s easy to get caught in a cycle of binging in order to try and feel good again. The simplest answer is keeping everything in balance.
Also, avoiding the artificial sweeteners with aspartame known as NutraSweet® and Equal® is also helpful because it may lower or block the production of serotonin levels.
Q: What is the “French Paradox”?
A: French people have a diet rich in animal protein and saturated fats. At the same time, the French also have a low rate of heart diseases. Researchers have spent years reviewing this phenomena and have dubbed it the “French Paradox”. Recent studies indicate that perhaps one of the reasons why the French have a natural defense towards heart diseases is because they have a tendency to drink a lot of red wine. Red wine comes from grapes and grape seeds contain potent antioxidant that is 20-50 times more powerful than vitamin C or E. The active ingredient of grape seed is a bioflavonoid called proanthocyanidins (OPC). OPC reinforces and strengthens collagen fibers according to certain studies if taken in amounts of 30-100 mg a day.
Q: What is the difference between seed flax and fish oil since both provide omega-3 fatty acid?
A: Seed flax contains more omega-3 fatty acid by weight compared to fish oil.
Omega-3 in flax seeds comes in the form of alpha-linolenic, which unfortunately needs to be converted to EPA (the active ingredient of omega-3 fatty acid) at the ratio of 10:1 and, therefore, the amount of conversion is limited. In addition, seed flax does not lower triglycerides as fish oil does. Using fish oil rather than seed flax oil has carried most of the research on this subject.
However, one of the major problems of fish oil is that people who take it develop a fishy “burp” that is harmless, but somewhat irritating because of a fishy aftertaste. If the aftertaste proves bothersome, flax seed is a good alternative.
Q: Why is magnesium called nature’s channel blocker?
A: Magnesium is a trace mineral and acts as an antioxidant. It aids in healing free radical damage to the mitochondria, which commonly results in declining function and aging. Magnesium protects the heart by preventing coronary artery spasms and cardiac arrhythmia. It also inhibits the release of thrompoxane that makes blood clot more easily. For these reasons, it has been called nature’s “calcium channel blocker” in the general sense. If you are on a calcium channel blocker, always consult your physician first before embarking on any self-heal program.
Q: Is there any vitamin that people should take in addition to multivitamins with minerals if they like to eat desserts?
A: Chromium is one option because sugar can destroy it. Eating 33% of daily calories in sugar costs 3 times the loss in chromium as compared to eating 10% of your diet in sugar. Additionally, surveys indicate that 90% of all Americans are deficient in the minimum recommended intake of chromium (50 mcg a day). Many researchers are recommending 200-300 mcg per day. Persons who do not get enough chromium can have insulin and blood sugar levels rise, causing diabetes and heart disease.
Q: Does a person over 60, who eats a healthy, balanced diet, really need multiple vitamins and supplements?
A: Statistics show that half of all Americans past 60 years old are deficient in vitamin A, C and E, even by the minimum standards set by the RDA. Most people don’t know that as we age, our ability to absorb vitamins runs out of steam.
Those who eat a balanced diet are less prone to deficiency. However, for anti-aging purposes, there are certain vitamins that food cannot give you.
A healthy anti-aging diet consists of 50% complex carbohydrates found in fruits and vegetables, 20% protein, 20% fat, and 10% simple carbohydrates. Even when someone eats this diligently, he or she would still have to consume a few thousand calories to get the 400 I.U. of Vitamin E recommended for anti-aging.
Chromium is similar. One would need to consume many calories a day in order to get the minimum RDA requirement of 50 mcg per day.
Q: Of which nutrients should one be cautious?
A: Someone with severe kidney problems or severe heart failure should not take excessive magnesium. Otherwise, magnesium supplement may be healthy especially for heart function and arrhythmia. Someone who has a blood clotting problem or who takes aspirin to thin the blood should not take too much ginkgo or fish oil.
Someone with chronic renal failure should be careful with any types of multiple vitamins as they have a tendency to stay in the body much longer and, therefore, a lower intake is necessary. Finally, niacin in dosages over 3 gm can damage the immune system.
Q: Are there any vitamins or minerals to avoid?
A: Iron, other than in ferrous form, is a potent oxidant and, therefore, is not recommended for adults unless they have iron deficiency anemia. Copper is a necessary mineral but also a potent oxidant. Generally speaking, copper is quite abundant in foods and there is no need for a copper supplement. An intake of more than 1,000 mg can be immuno-suppressant. A normal recommended anti-aging intake is 30 mg.
Q: I’ve heard a lot about antioxidants, can you tell me more about them?
A: Antioxidants are chemicals that donate a sought after electron to a free radical without being dangerous. The resultant free radical is stabilized and the rampage of cellular activities, which leads to destruction in our body known as aging, slows accordingly. One trillion molecules of oxygen go through each cell every day, inflicting about 100,000 free radical hits on genes or DNA. 99% of these hits are repaired by our bodies’ endogenous antioxidant. 1,000 new wounds are left each day, causing genetic mutation. By age 30, we find many oxygen lesions (wounds) to the cells in our body. It is postulated that it is this accumulative trauma that results in diseases such as cancer, stroke, and heart diseases commonly found in aging. By age 50, a high percentage of our cellular protein has been damaged by free radical attacks, especially molecules high in fat such as those in arteries and heart muscles. So, antioxidants are very critical for anti-aging purposes under this hypothesis.
Q: Where is the best place to get antioxidants?
A: Antioxidants occur naturally in fruits and vegetables. Eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables decreases the risk of cancer significantly. The death rate dropped in men who ate a carrot (vitamin A) and two-and-a-half oranges (vitamin C) a day. If someone is not eating that many vegetables, then a simple solution is taking antioxidants in the form of supplements.
Q: How many forms of vitamin E are there? Which one is the best?
A: Vitamin E tocopherol is available in the natural form, which can be identified with the “d” prefix, and in synthetic form, which can be identified by a “dl” prefix. The natural formula comes from soy and it’s more active biologically.
That means that a person doesn’t have to take the same quantity of the natural form as the synthetic, and there is more benefit to the natural.
The most active biological form is alpha-tocopherol. Some studies have lately come up alluding to the benefits of beta-tocopherol and gamma-tocopherol, although these are not conclusive. Most research to this point has been done based on d-alpha-tocopherol in the amount of 250-300 I.U per day.
Q: What are some of the vitamins that can be toxic?
A: Fat-soluble vitamins include vitamin A, D, E, and K. These can be toxic to our body because the excess stays behind instead of being excreted. Anyone taking more than 10,000 international units of vitamin A per day may have a tendency to get vitamin toxicity. The smarter way to take vitamin A is in the form of beta-carotene from plant sources. There is almost no toxicity relating to the intake of beta-carotene of up to 50,000 I.U per day when it’s supplied by these sources. In fact, some cancer patients take 40,000-60,000 I.U of beta-carotene routinely per day.
Vitamin D is another fat-soluble vitamin that can be toxic in large doses. For anti-aging purposes, it’s not necessary to use more than 400 I.U per day, and it’s not recommended that one exceeds that amount. Vitamin D is important for calcium absorption, but people who are exposed to the sunlight indirectly or directly for more than 15 minutes 3 times a week really don’t have much to worry about.
Vitamin E can also be toxic in high doses. Up to 1,200 mg a day is generally accepted. In dosages of more than 3,000 I.U per day one can experience some headache, diarrhea and increase in blood pressure.
Q: To what supplements should vegetarians pay attention?
A: A vegetarian diet is wonderful for anti-aging purposes, especially as one gets older. Nonetheless, a B12 supplement may be called for because only animal foods like fish, chicken, meat, and dairy foods contain this Vitamin. At least 50 mg of Vitamin B12 per day is good for starters; 500-1,000 mg per day in older people is more appropriate for anti-aging purposes.
Q: What happens if someone forgets to take the supplements?
A: Simply be sure to begin taking them again with the next meal and get back to the regular schedule. There is no need to double up on supplements just because of a missed a meal. The body won’t be able to absorb all the nutrients at once anyway.
Q: Why doesn’t my doctor stress the importance of taking nutritional supplements?
A: Many physicians are preoccupied with treating clinical diseases and are not always aware of scientifically benefits of nutritional supplements. Most medical schools spend only a small amount of time on nutrition, especially in the past.
Doctors who are knowledgeable about the value of supplements often pursue the information on their own accord. Fortunately, this trend is growing and more physicians are becoming aware of the scientific benefits of nutritional supplementation than ever before.
Q: Should a person still take supplements when ill?
A: If it’s a minor illness like the common cold, definitely. The body needs all the help it can get during this disease fighting state to rejuvenate the immune system. When a serious illness occurs, it’s best to check with a personal physician first.
Q: Do all Chondroitin products contain Chitin that is made from crab shells?
A: No. Chondroitin is derived from beef bone, not shell fish or crab shell.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA has not approved any of the suggested nutrients for the purposes indicated. The efficacy and safety of these supplements have not been scientifically established, nor has the FDA established any criteria for these supplements concerning dosage, efficacy, or safety.
Our response is for general information only and not directed towards any particular injury or disease. eAntiAging is unable to answer questions more specifically. We act as a resource for general education to assist you in learning more about your body and how to enhance your life experience. Since each person is different, you should consult your physician prior to embarking on any nutritional supplementation, exercise, diet, or hormonal enhancement program. Information provided herein is not a replacement for personal attention by your qualified health professional.
Q: What is the effect of selenium and what does it contain? Also I have fibromyalgia and lung fibrosis. I am on Imuran. Is it safe for me to take the ATP boost, SAMe, Vitamin A, 5-HTP, Selenium, MSM, Milk Thistle combined? I read on the Internet that this helps fibromyalgia.
A: ‘Selenium is a trace mineral and an antioxidant. It plays a vital role in the functioning of the antioxidant enzyme glutathione peroxidase. As such, it affects all components of the immune system, including the development of white blood cells. Selenium deficiency results in depressed immune function and a higher risk of infection. In one study, selenium supplementation of 200 mcg per day to people with normal selenium levels in their blood leads to 118 percent increase in the ability of the lymphocytes to kill tumor cells and 82.3 percent increase in the activity of natural killer cells. Unfortunately, dietary intake is often insufficient, although high amounts are found in Brazilian nuts if you are a nut lover.
Fibromyalgia is a common cause of musculoskeletal pain and fatigue. It is often associated with chronic fatigue syndrome. The central cause of the pain of fibromyalgia appears to be a low level of serotonin.
Imuran is an immunosuppressive medication commonly used to reduce the body’s natural immunity in patients who receive organ transplants. It is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis and other conditions your physician feels indicated.
Imuran can temporarily lower the number of white blood cells in your blood, increasing the chance of getting an infection. It can also lower the number of platelets, which are necessary for proper blood clotting.
Milk Thistle is a herb with liver protection properties. It prevents damage to the liver by acting as an antioxidant as this protective effect has been demonstrated in a number of studies. It is used widely by people who have hepatitis from causes such as alcohol.
If your intention is to boost your immunity function, then Selenium, Milk Thistle, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E are all supplements worth considering.
If your intention is to get relief from your fibromyalgia, many have reported improvement with Magnesium and Malic Acid in conjunction with a high potency multivitamin and mineral formula. 5-HTP may be effective on its own due to its conversion to serotonin, although magnesium in combination with malic acid and calming herbs such as Kava Kava or St. John’s Wort may be better due to its synergistic effect.
In addition, you should watch your diet to eat more fruits and vegetables, stay away from saturated animal fat, and reduce your stress level.
Without knowing what bothers you the most, the above will give you a general direction of how to proceed.
Q: Is there any advantage from intravenous vitamin C that the usual vitamin C (taken orally) does not have? Should we take vitamin C 1,000 mg a day all at once, or should we take it several times a day (i.e 3 or 4 times vitamin C 250 mg a day)?
A: Intravenous Vitamin C is only for those who need the high doses that oral forms cannot deliver. We are generally talking in the range of 30 to 50 grams per infusion. Vitamin C, being water soluble, should be best taken in split doses if possible. If you are taking 1,000 mg a day, its best, but not mandatory, to split your intake into a few times a day if you are in good health.
Q: What is Leutin?
A: Leutin is a powerful antioxidant in the carotenoid family. It works on improving the immune system and helps prevent cancer. In addition, it protects the oxidation of cholesterol. In particular, lutein is significant in protecting the retina of the eye from damaging UV rays of the sun, which has a free radical effect. Specifically, it has been shown to be effective in protecting the eye against the development of age-related macular degeneration, the number one cause of blindness for those over 65.
Q: I have received the AQ Pack and noticed that the dosage is 25,048 IU of Vitamin A (Beta Carotene). I have never seen such an excessively high dosage of Vitamin A in any dietary supplement. Though I am thoroughly familiar with the excellent qualities of Beta Carotene, I do not believe in taking excessive dosages of anything no matter how good. The high dosage of Beta Carotene is surprising as all other ingredients in the AQ Pack are pretty much in line with the usual dosages. I am looking forward to your response.
A: Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin, the excess of which is stored in the liver. It is found in found in eggs, milk, fat, fish liver oil, organ meats, and liver. Fish liver oil is a rich source of vitamin A. Halibut liver oil, in particular, has 100 times as much as cod liver. Vitamin A is correlated with aging and the reproductive system. It is essential for the liver synthesis of RNA and maintenance of the thymus gland. The more pollution you are exposed to, the more vitamin A you need. Beta-carotene is a precursor to vitamin A. It is found in green, orange, and yellow vegetables and fruits. Toxicity to beta-carotene is very rare.
Dr. Thomas Moore of Dunn Nutritional Lab, Cambridge, England, reported that the human liver can absorb and store at least 500,000 IU of beta carotene. Intake of more than 200,000 IU daily can incur the danger of chronic hypervitaminosis. Symptoms of vitamin A toxicity include: bone & joint pain, fatigue, insomnia, hair loss, dryness, fissuring lips, anorexia, weight loss, and an enlarged liver.
A dose of 20,000 IU beta carotene should be harmless even over indefinite periods. Single dose 2 million IU is required to induce acute hypervitaminosis.
Beta-carotene is important for eye health. The University of California at Los Angeles ophthalmology clinic is endorsing the use of at least 25,000 IU beta carotene in the multivitamins a day.
Studies have shown that beta-carotene and other food derivative carotenoids to be NON-TOXIC. Beta carotene dosage EQUIVALENT TO 100,000 IU/DAY has been given to controlled subjects for 3 months. Serum carotene levels increased from 128 to 308 in 1 month and remained without further increase. Conversion to vitamin A from beta-carotene is not an automatic process.
Unfortunately, an estimated 50 million Americans are deficient in vitamin A, as 40% of it is lost in food processing and destroyed by light and heat. There is very little of it found in beef and pork, and cooking decrease vitamin A 20-35%. Nitrates from commercial fertilizers also interfere with carotene conversion to A, leading to decreased glycoprotein synthesis in the lung, decreased resistance to infection, chemical irritation, and night blindness.
Q: In my order, how do I know what’s in the AM Pouch vs. the PM Pouch? There is nothing stating what’s what.
A: The AM Pouch is marked with an orange colored sun and is located on the left column of the box as you face the front of the box. The AM Pouch usually contains the Energy formulation (Vitamin B12, Royal Jelly, Octacosanol, Spirulina, and Siberian Ginseng), the Daily Nutrients, the Enzymes, and L-Glutamine.
The PM Pouch is marked with a green colored moon on the right column of the box. The PM Pouch usually contains the Daily Herb formula (Echinacea, Valerian, Kava Kava, St. John’s Wort, and Chamomile), the Daily Nutrients, the Enzymes, and also L-Glutamine.
The formulations that are in your daily packs appear in either the AM or PM Pouches for specific reasons. For example, the Energy Formulation is given in the morning to give your body a boost and keep you going throughout the day. The Daily Herbal Formula is given in the evening to help soothe and calm your body down and get you ready for a good night’s rest.
Q: What is the caffeine content in Mountain Dew and green tea?
A: Mountain Dew contains 55 milligrams of caffeine in a 12-ounce can. Green tea contains 30 milligrams of caffeine per cup.
Q: Are there any scientific proofs that antioxidants increase life span?
A: Antioxidants have now been proven to extend life span. Researchers have found that drugs that mimic some natural antioxidants are able to extend the lifespan of worms ( Caenorhabditis Elegans ) by nearly 50%. This is reported in the journal Science (2000- Sept.) The scavenging compounds also restored normal life spans to a subgroup of nematodes that would otherwise have aged and died prematurely due to a genetic defect linked to oxidative stress.
Endogenous oxidative stress is a major determinant of the rate of aging. Common and better-known antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, work by interrupting chain reactions that would otherwise result in oxidation of cells caused by the release of substances, from cell membranes. Antioxidants like vitamin E are called chain-breaking antioxidants because they react with one of the species that’s going to propagate and stop the chain reaction. So instead of a process that might involve a hundred molecules, if you have vitamin E around it might stop after only five, so it inhibits oxidation by breaking the chain, preventing the propagation of chain reactions.
In contrast, superoxide dismutase, catalase, and their synthetic mimics work by removing free radicals such as superoxide (O2-), a species of O2 with a negative electrical charge, because it has picked up an additional electron. O2- and other reactive oxygen species are continually being made in the body as byproducts of normal metabolism
Q: What is the RDA recommendation for common vitamins and minerals, and how are they different from anti-aging intake levels?
A: Vitamin D: RDA – 200 international units for most people; 400 IUs for people ages 51 to 70. Found in fortified milk.
Vitamin E: RDA – 15 milligrams. Upper limit – 1,000 milligrams; higher levels risk uncontrolled bleeding.
Folic Acid: RDA – 400 micrograms. Found in spinach, orange juice, and fortified foods. Because folic acid in the first days of pregnancy prevents certain birth defects, women of childbearing age are routinely advised to take a supplement.
Upper limit – 1 milligram a day; more can cause nerve damage.
Calcium: RDA for most adults – 1,000 milligrams daily; for teenagers – 1,300 milligrams; for those over age 50 – 1,200 milligrams. Highest food sources are dairy and calcium-fortified orange juice.
Vitamin K: RDA – 120 micrograms for men, 90 for women. Found in green leafy vegetables.
Iron: RDA – 8 milligrams for men and postmenopausal women. Premenopausal women need 18 milligrams; pregnant women 27 milligrams. Upper limit – 45 milligrams or stomach upset can occur.
Zinc: RDA – 11 milligrams for men, 8 for women. Upper limit – 40 milligrams; more can block absorption of another vital nutrient, copper.
The intake for anti-aging purposes is much higher. RDA level is good to prevent diseases such as scurvy or rickets. To reverse a current diseased condition or to optimize your health requires much more according to anti-aging researchers. The RDA for vitamin C is only 75 mg for women, but most in anti-aging experts are taking 500 mg or more. Many are taking from 3 grams to 10 grams a day. The noted two-time Nobel Laureate Dr. Linus Pauling took 18 grams a day. He died at the age of 94 and contributed the last 12 years of his life to vitamin C supplementation.
Q: I have been on nutritional supplements for more than 4 years. Lately, I found out my finger nails are getting thinner & thinner, they are so soft and break easily. People told me that I am lacking Calcium, I really don’t know what happened. Could you give me some advice?
A: Maybe elemental calcium could help you here. In additional to Calcium, supplements that include elemental calcium, for the skeletal muscular system, you may wish to consider Magnesium and digestive enzymes. We have plenty of people who reported improved nail health (lack of curling, less brittleness, etc.) after supplementing with Calcium (containing elemental calcium), Magnesium, and digestive enzymes.
I know vitamin C is an important antioxidant, but some doctors here use it by injecting vitamin C intravenously as much as 3000 mg. Is this a right thing to do? And can you tell me the optimum dose of vitamin C a day and how many times a day we should take it to get the best result? Thank you for your answer.
Intravenous vitamin C is usually reserved for those who have severe illness beyond the reach of conventional medicine, such as cancer. The amount of infusion is usually closer to 30 grams (30,000 mg) each session. It must be carried out under the supervision of a knowledgeable physician. For preventive anti-aging health, 1,000 mg per day is a good amount to take. Keep all of this in mind and don’t forget to utilize a supplement containing elemental calcium for the best results.
Q: Should iron be supplemented routinely for anti-aging purposes?
A: Unless iron deficiency is present, with the possible exception of pregnant women, iron supplementation is not warranted. To find out if you are deficient in iron, ask your doctor for a blood test called the serum ferritin level.
Ferritin is a protein that carries iron, and low ferritin levels are a common sign of iron deficiency. Like all laboratory tests, the interpretation of ferritin levels is subject to interpretation. Because the body has a limited capacity for iron absorption, it does not make any sense to administer more than twenty milligrams of elemental iron at a time.
Most commercially available iron formula such as iron sulfate comes in 325 mg pills. Iron should not be taken as part of a multivitamin or multimineral on a routine basis unless you are anemic. Iron interferes with the absorption of the essential minerals zinc, manganese and molybdenum and also destroys vitamin E and its own absorption is blocked by calcium and magnesium.
Iron is best absorbed after a meal, with a small quantity of vitamin C between one hundred and five hundred milligrams). And, keep in mind that it is not the only supplement great for anti-aging. Elemental calcium is also a helpful component in the process.
Q: Is a high dose of Vitamin C bad for you?
A: Vitamin C is one of those supplements that have always been synonymous with being safe. It’s right up there with multi-vitamins. Conventional medical doctors routinely advise their patients to take Vitamin C as a kind of “insurance policy.”
Hundreds of papers in the past 30-40 years have repeatedly shown that vitamin C is good for you. From time to time, adverse studies do surface and it is important to look at the whole picture with a broad perspective.
It is also important to scrutinize each study, as there are good studies and ones not so good. For example, in the spring of 2000, a study was presented at the American Heart Association’s 40th Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease, Epidemiology and Prevention. In this study, researchers claim that vitamin C supplementation may increase one’s risk of developing atherosclerosis, which is certainly s a surprise. While interesting, it is important to note that this paper has not yet been published in a peer-reviewed medical journal. In addition, there are prominent nutrition experts who cast doubt on the findings.
The peer-review process is to validate the soundness of research procedures and findings consistent with the latest standards.
The paper has not yet been peer-reviewed or published.
In this study, the researchers measured the thickness of the wall of a neck artery on 573 healthy men aged 40 to 60 over an 18-month-period. They found that the men who took 500 mg of vitamin C daily had an increase in arterial wall thickness that was 2.5 times greater than men who did not use supplements.
In a press release issued by Oregon State University, vitamin C expert Balz Frei, professor, and director of the university’s Linus Pauling Institute, said, “The results from the study, in fact, are in direct conflict with a study published in 1995 in the American Heart Association journal, Circulation. That research found a significant reduction in carotid artery wall thickness in people over 55 who consumed about 1,000 mg or more of vitamin C a day, compared to those consuming less than 88 mg per day.” He explains that the findings of the Circulation study were based on more than 11,000 people and, unlike the more recent study, had undergone rigorous peer-review before publication. Frei also says that more than 20 clinical studies since 1996 have consistently found beneficial effects of vitamin C on a relaxation of arteries.
At the meantime, positive studies continue to be published that show vitamin C to have significant health benefits. Most of the research indicates that vitamin C is our friend. People who are taking vitamin C supplements should continue to do so because the known health benefits of vitamin C far outweigh alleged, unconfirmed risks.
Q: What foods should I not eat to prevent candida? What diet, herbs, and vitamins would you recommend killing candida?
A: To combat candida, you should generally avoid chronic antibiotic/corticosteroid use, high yeast or high mold foods including alcoholic beverages, cheeses, dried fruit, melons, and peanuts. A 2-3 day fasting program to detoxify your body is always a good way to treat candidiasis if done properly.
High sugar intake promotes the growth of candida. Therefore, a diet void of refined sugar, honey and maple syrup, milk or dairy products is recommended. 3-5 grams of soluble fiber at bedtime is also helpful. A probiotic diet high in yogurts with live active cultures (such as acidophilus) will help prevent candida. Herbs that inhibit candida growth include:
- Dong Quai
- Milk Thistle (silymarin improves the liver function)
- Caprylic Acid
- Berberine containing plants
A high-potency dietary supplement regimen to promote the bile flow is very important. The regimen should contain enzymes, HCl thymus glandular extract, high doses of antioxidants (vitamins A, C, E, and Selenium), and minerals.
Supplementing with Flaxseed oil daily may also be helpful.
In addition, avoiding stress and getting plenty of rest and good sleep nightly will help prevent candida. Elemental calcium is also a helpful component in the process.
Q: I am interested in taking your supplements. However, I have been extremely sensitive to vitamins in the past causing nausea and severe headache and also headache from more l00 mg of vitamin E. I note your supplements have large amounts of vitamin E and C, which in the past has caused diarrhea. Should I be taking this? Also, your information stated that more the 500 mg of magnesium could cause diarrhea and the supplements contain more than that. While I don’t have a kidney “problem,” I have had many kidney infections in the past and have a somewhat compromised kidney. Please advise. Thank you.
A: The vitamins in the supplements reflect nutrients already in your body. Very few people are sensitive. You may be one of these, in which case you should always listen to your body. Make sure you eliminate other causes such as herbs, hypertension, etc. for your severe headache. If you have isolated that the cause is due to high dose vitamins alone, then you should avoid taking higher doses.
Some people are able to overcome this gradually sensitizing their body with low dose and titrating upwards slowly. For anti-aging purposes, the optimum level of intake is much higher than normal and unfortunately, we offer no other solution.
As far as magnesium is concerned, kidney infection should not be a deterrent to taking Magnesium at 500 mg a day, generally speaking. Since each person is unique, you are always advised to talk to your physician if you have a history of kidney problem. The RDA is 300-400 mg a day, so that 500 mg is not very high.
Diarrhea usually occurs at intake level over 1,200 mg a day, although some people can have diarrhea or loose stool at levels much lower. If you have diarrhea or loose stool, then simply take less.
Q: Is it true that if you eat too much vitamin E, your hair will fall out?
A: No studies have shown this correlation as far as we know. Too much vitamin E is not good. Stay within 400 IU to 800 IU per day, and take the natural form (d-alpha tocopherol) for best absorption and results.
Q: Is Calcium D-Glucarate an antioxidant?
A: Calcium D-Glucarate is distinguished from antioxidants in that it supports detoxification and elimination of potentially harmful toxins while providing protection against the “mutating effects” that these carcinogens induce on cellular DNA.
Calcium D-Glucarate is the patented form of glucaric acid, a phytonutrient found naturally in grapefruit, apples, oranges, broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
Researchers have determined that supplemental Calcium D-Glucarate promotes glucuronidation, one of the major processes by which the body eliminates potentially harmful substances and chemicals, thereby protecting it from environmental toxins.
Calcium D-Glucarate promotes health by inhibiting beta-glucuronidase, an enzyme that forms in the body and which hinders glucuronidation. If beta-glucuronidase levels go unchecked, they may not only reverse glucuronidation but also allow toxins to remain in the body to potentially cause cell damage. It helps combat the numerous carcinogens, such as pesticides, over-cooked food, alcohol, food additives, tobacco, fungal mutagens and industrial pollutants, the body is exposed to regularly. in addition to the information above, please remember that elemental calcium improves health. If you are looking to encourage your health through calcium supplements, then one containing elemental calcium is a helpful component.
Q: I am a 42 year old woman and refuse to take supplementation int the form of pills/capsules! However, I am very particular in terms of consuming healty foods & a balanced diet.
A: Research shows that even an optimum diet may not deliver the proper amount of nutrients for optimum health including components like elemental calcium found in egg shells. Take Vitamin E, for example. You need to consume 5,000 calories a day to get the generally accepted 400 IU of Vitamin E a day that is required for optimal anti-aging health. From the scientific viewpoint, the evidence is overwhelming for supplementation for key antioxidants such as Vitamin E. Whether you are psychologically ready to take such “pills” is a personal decision, but the scientific evidence is very strong and compelling to do so.
Q: I have heard that silica is an important nutrient for heart and bone. Is this true?
A: Silica is the most abundant mineral in the earth’s surface and is also an essential nutrient for health. As we age, levels of silica decline in the body and may contribute to aging diseases such as bone loss and heart disease.
Therapeutically, silica has been used to heal fractures and increase bone mineralization in osteoporosis. In a 1993 French study, eight women (average age of 64) with osteoporosis were given 50 mg of silicon twice weekly for four months. Researchers found that silica significantly increased the mineral density of their thighbones. Evidence also indicates that silica may benefit certain types of heart disease. In one animal study, silica was given to rats with high blood pressure for six weeks while the control group received a saline solution. After one week, the blood pressure of the silica group was lower than the control group and remained lower until one week after treatment ended. In another study, silica was found to reduce atherosclerosis in rats eating a high-cholesterol diet.
The common “heart-friendly” foods, such as dietary fiber (oats, barley, and rice) and wine, are also high in silica. One of the heart benefits of the so-called Mediterranean Diet could be due to eating greater quantities of these silica-rich foods. Other dietary sources of silica include alfalfa, avocados, strawberries, onions, cucumbers, and dark greens. The herb horsetail (Equisetum arvensa) is another common source of silica and can typically be found as a nutritional supplement. Keep in mind that elemental calcium is also helpful.
Q: Can vitamins and supplements be taken all together at one time, or should they be taken individually over the course of the day?
A: The two determinants of how often and when to take supplements are the speed of degradation of the supplement and the body’s bio-rhythm. Most water based supplements (like vitamin C, the B vitamins, etc.) are degraded within 60 minutes, while fat-soluble vitamins (like vitamin E, A, and K) take a little longer to degrade. During the day, the body needs to be fully alert and therefore the B Vitamins, which are best for the nervous system, is most suitable. The ideal person would, therefore, be taking supplements once every few hours, 3-4 times a day. While this is the best method, (and some people do it), the majority of health conscious people may find it difficult. We recommend a twice a day dosage regimen, with different supplements for day and night, to maintain an adequate blood level 24 hours a day.
Q: Does Coenzyme Q10 have anti-cancer properties?
A: Coenzyme Q10, which is found in all your cells, provides energy – especially to the heart muscle. That is why it has become a vital treatment for heart health in recent years. Those with congestive heart failure have found CoQ10 particularly helpful. But now a new series of studies is turning up some even more exciting news. CoQ10 may be able to halt cancer.
Recent research has shown that low levels of CoQ10 were found in women with breast cancer. Increased levels were associated with regression and remission.
Moreover, unlike conventional treatment, CoQ10 is completely non-toxic and it stimulates the immune system, rather than depressing it.
In several studies, CoQ10 worked wonders with patients who had chosen to take chemotherapy, reducing the toxicity of such treatment. In one study, patients who were given CoQ10 had little or no toxicity, even though they were given much larger doses of the toxic chemotherapy agent than were given to the control group. This inverse correlation is significant.
CoQ10 is fat soluble and dissolves in fat. Therefore it is most absorbable in either a special wafer form (to which some oil has been added) or taken with a tablespoon of olive oil. Burton Goldberg recommends coconut oil.
Since CoQ10 has many health benefits, a minimum dose of 50-100 mg daily is appropriate for prevention of degenerative diseases, improved energy, and for general health. If you have cancer, you will want to increase that dosage dramatically to 400-600 mg daily. Such high dose should be taken under the direction of a physician.
CoQ10 is naturally manufactured by the body. However, two factors are significant. First, the amount declines with age. Second, the B vitamins niacin (B3), folic acid, and pyridoxine (B6) are required for the body to make this important nutrient. If you are not eating red meat, be sure that you are taking a good multivitamin and high doses of B complex. Also, note that the statin class of cholesterol-lowering drugs inhibits the production of CoQ10. If you are taking these drugs, you need to supplement with CoQ10. Elemental calcium is also a helpful component.
Q: I’m a 43 year-old female, I run and weight train 5 times a week. I would like to know how I’m taking this L-glutamine? I read the article said that L-glutamine is very good for health, and I’m a bit confuse whether I need this or not. Would you mind giving me your advice? Thank you.
A: While it is not the same as elemental calcium and does not serve the exact same purpose as elemental calcium, glutamine is an amino acid that is supplied in food but can also be produced by the human body. It is a conditional amino acid as the body may not be able to synthesize it under stressful conditions. It is important as a transporter of nitrogen and carbon among tissues, and it plays a role as a primary oxidative fuel in rapidly dividing cells as found in the lining of the intestines.
From an anti-aging perspective, glutamine has been found to be linked to increased GH secretion. It, therefore, acts as a prohormone for growth hormone. Some studies have found that the level of GH (through measuring IGF-1) in our body increases almost 4 times with high intake of L-glutamine, anywhere from 2 – 5 grams or more a day. For general anti-aging purposes, the suggested intake is 500 mg two to four times a day.
Aside from its prohormone like properties, glutamine is a neurotransmitter in the brain. It is essential for proper brain, immune, kidney, pancreas, bladder, and liver functions. Glutamine becomes one of our body’s most powerful antioxidants in high quantities. Many people, especially those in weight training, add this amino acid due to its benefit in muscle metabolism.
Supplementation of 2 – 3 gm/day is quite common. For those who plan to take extra doses, it is best to divide the doses throughout the day with up to four servings daily.
Q: Should I take Vitamin E and aspirin together?
A: Vitamin E has a blood-thinning effect at high doses. Aspirin has a similar type of effect. Taking both may lead to excessive thinning of the blood, resulting in bleeding if severe. Many people on 1 or 2 regular aspirin of 325 mg each can take 400 IU of Vitamin E without any problems. You should always check with your physician before taking any combination of Vitamin E and aspirin if you have health concerns and medical histories, especially if you have hematological problems or history of stroke. If you are on blood thinners such as Coumadin already, you should be extra careful to avoid over-thinning of the blood. For your information, garlic also has blood thinning properties. As an aside, remember that elemental calcium can be consumed with aspirin, and elemental calcium can increase variable valuable parts of your health.
Q: Is MD Gee-h like Metabolife?
A: Metabolife is a weight loss product. MD gee-h is a peptide-based, oral secretagogue designed to enhance the release of growth hormone from your body’s pituitary gland. Most people do experience some weight loss with growth hormone enhancement. More importantly, growth hormone allows the redistribution of fat and muscle (increasing muscle and decreasing fat), thereby changing the contour of your body and giving you a younger profile. While this question does not directly relate to elemental calcium, it is important to remember that elemental calcium can make a grand difference in your overall health. Elemental calcium may not be Metabolife but elemental calcium is a great addition to a health regimen.
Q: I have heard that taking non-flushing niacin one hour before exercising is helpful in removing toxins from the body. Is there any truth to this? If so, what dosage is recommended?
A: While it is no elemental calcium, niacin dilates the blood vessels, allowing a greater amount of nutrient material to reach the cell laboratory or factor comprising muscles and nerves. This increased blood flow to the skin creates a blushing and hot feeling, particularly on the neck and face. This increase skin blood flow, skin temperature, and radiative and connective heat loss, all of which contribute to reduced core temperature and detoxification. This effect has led some researchers to suggest that niacin may play a role in enhancing an athlete’s cooling mechanisms during exercise in the heat. Studies looking at the effects of nicotinic acid on exercise performance have been done where subjects were given 280 mg of nicotinic acid per liter of carbohydrate drink during 120 minutes of cycling at 68.7% of their maximum oxygen intake capacity.
Investigators found that the solution increased the carbohydrate oxidation rate, and, most importantly, impaired performance. Other investigators have reported these results as well.
Large doses of niacin also reduce fat utilization during exercise. Studies of the effects of niacin on endurance performance have produced conflicting results, due, in part, to the range of exercise intensities used in these studies. One interesting study conducted at the Oregon State University and was reported at the Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine, June 1996, addressed this very issue. That study evaluated the effects of niacin on endurance performance at both moderate and high-intensity exercise in the same subjects (cyclists). The inhibition on free fatty acid mobilization during the moderate intensity exercise caused a significant impairment in performance. This is consistent with previous studies. However, at the higher intensity exercise, where fat utilization plays a lesser role, the inhibiting effects of niacin on free fatty acid availability did not result in a statistically significant difference in performance times.
Taking high dose niacin for detoxification purposes is probably not the best way to go. Taking a balanced dose of an optimum amount of vitamins and minerals, including elemental calcium, together with a balanced anti-aging diet and participation in a detoxification program should be considered.
Q: How much sunlight exposure do I need to prevent Vitamin D deficiency?
A: The amount of sun exposure for vitamin D depends on a large number of factors, such as latitude, skin pigmentation, sunscreen use, and air pollution. For a Caucasian with medium skin pigmentation, exposure of the face, hands, and arms for five minutes two or three times a week for three-fourths of the year actually eliminates the need for dietary intake. While elemental calcium was not mentioned in this particular portion of the article, it is important to remember what elemental calcium can do for you and how elemental calcium can improve your health. From now on, make sure to look for supplements that include high levels of elemental calcium to improve your overall well-being. Just keep in mind elemental calcium, elemental calcium, elemental calcium for improved and enhanced lifestyle.
Your knowledge of the interactions of hormones and there practical application is the best I have run across and I wanted to applaud your website and approach. Excellent Job Doc!