forty percent of Americans take vitamin and mineral supplements
optimal bodily function, especially in athletes, cannot occur without daily ingestion of a precise mix of 59 substances, in the correct amounts
oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, and sulphur are needed in large amounts, while the remaining 54 are needed in medium or small amounts
the 54 substances previously mentioned are less plentiful in the environment and thus in our food, so you are more likely to develop a deficiency in those ones
as of May 1992, 13 vitamins, 22 minerals, 6 cofactors, 8 amino acids, and two essential fatty acids (EFAs) were recognized as essential to the human system
all nutrients act in synergy to produce, maintain, and renew the body, and if even one is missing, or in short supply, the functions of the others are impaired
the word ”essential” means: 1) nutrients have to be present in adequate amounts or function is impaired, 2) the body cannot make nutrients or cannot make enough of them for normal tissue function, and 3) you have to get them from your diet
supplements can make up for shortcomings in your diet.
supplements can make good health easier for you to achieve.
on 9 April, 1991, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Nutrition, a Washington lobby representing 3000 physicians, asked the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to abandon the four food groups and to reclassify meats and dairy as ”optional foods” – 2004 Harvard has instituted a food pyramid that tips the USDA and Health Canada food pyramids upside down.
a professor of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University, presented evidence that the excess intakes of meat and dairy products in America is strongly linked with their high rates of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and osteoporosis
on 27 April 1992, the USDA issued a food pyramid emphasizing whole grains, then vegetables, then fruits, as the basis of nutrition, with meats and dairy as minor foods
just a ”balanced” “mainstream” diet alone is not enough to ensure good nutrition.
pregnant women, dieters, and senior citizens, simply cannot obtain the recommended allowances for certain nutrients through “mainstream” food alone.
sometimes supplements are a safer source of certain nutrients than certain foods.
Principles Of Nutrition
Synergy. Nutrients are co-dependant on other nutrients to exert function within the body. They function only by interdependent interactions with each other.
Completeness. The corollary of synergy is that even if one essential nutrient is in short supply, none of the others can function properly.
Biochemical Individuality. Nutritional needs of individuals differ as much as their faces and fingerprints. Each person requires an individual nutrition program
Lifestyle Dynamics. Lifestyle choices such as the choice of training level, or the choice of living in a polluted urban area, dramatically affect nutritional needs.
Precision. There is only a narrow range of intake of each nutrient that will produce the optimum function.
Physiological Dynamics. Improved nutrition must wait on nature to renew whole bodily systems before its effects can show.
comes in several forms, some of which are natural and some of which are synthetic
vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) is synthetic and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) occurs naturally in some foods and is made by our skin when exposed to the sun’s UV rays
plays a key role in calcium and phosphorus metabolism
vitamin D and calcium have been linked to a reduced risk of colon cancer as calcium seems to tie up carcinogens in the digestive tract, preventing them from causing damage to the colon wall
necessary for healthy function of parathyroid and thyroid glands
essential to the formation of teeth and bones
30 minutes/day in the summer sun produces a lot more vitamin D than the RDA of 10mcg. (1 mcg. is equal to 40 IU)
rickets is the final stage of vitamin D deficiency in children and it is called osteomalacia in adults
inadequate vitamin D prevents the body from absorbing enough calcium and without calcium osteoporosis is a major risk factor
body’s ability to make vitamin D declines as you age
Interactions and Toxicity:
vitamin D is the most toxic of all vitamins
damage from too much can be irreparable under certain, unfortunate circumstances
you cannot overdose on vitamin D via the sun, but you can using supplements
classic symptoms of overdose are: loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, excessive urination and thirst, and headaches
excessive vitamin D in the blood leads to excessive calcium in the blood (hypercalcemia), which can be a serious medical condition
if calcium is severely elevated in the blood, muscles may weaken and symptoms such as confusion, delirium, and coma can occur
in addition, in the most extreme cases shock and death may occur
to remove excess calcium from the blood, the kidneys may direct it into the urine for excretion leading to the possibility of developing kidney stones and if calcium level gets too high the kidneys may fail
calcium is found in 90% of all kidney stones in the USA
vitamin D overdose can cause permanent kidney damage or calcification of other organs, such as the lungs and stomach
children, and especially infants, are more sensitive to vitamin D supplementation
infants can develop a rare disorder called idiopathic hypercalcemia which slows the infants growth, produces an ”elfin” facial appearance, kidney malfunction, and severe mental retardation
research in animals indicates that a high intake of vitamin D can be hazardous to the arteries
barbiturates, certain anticonvulsants, cholesterol-lowering drugs, cortisone and certain laxatives increase the need for vitamin D
vitamin D is unique because our main source is not food, but rather the sun
sunlight activates a compound in the skin (7-dehydrocholesterol), which the liver and kidneys convert to the active form of vitamin D
fair skin is more cooperative with this process than dark skin, which lets in less of the sun’s D-making rays
window glass screens out UV light, which activates the D-forming process
works to help transfer electrons (in the mitochondria) in the energy cycle
intimately involved in maintaining immunity, and in the normal functioning of the heart
CoQ10 enhances macrophage activity
it is a potent antioxidant
antiviral activity, as well as increases ones resistance to viruses
body converts CoQ, as well as the amino acid methionine, into CoQ10
exercise produces millions of superoxide free radicals, hydroperoxides and hydroxyl free radicals, which is the major source of continued muscle soreness and weakness you feel for days after heavy exercise
the free radicals produced are a result of the use of oxygen
the first pathway, called the tetravalent reduction of oygen with cytochrome C oxidase, for oxygen use is pretty clean and it uses approximately 95% of the oxygen
the second pathway,called the univalent reduction pathway, which uses the remaining 5% of the oxygen, is a very dirty pathway, producing lots of free radicals
however, the sheer volume of oxygen used during exercise is not the only reason that exercise overwhelms muscles with free radicals
the vital chemical cytochrome C also gets used up
cytochrome C oxidase is the last catalyst in the chain that regenerates ATP, so that the muscles can continue working
when cytochrome C activity falls, CoQ comes to the rescue in completing the regeneration of ATP
however, CoQ may itself produce superoxide radicals
CoQ10, also known as a powerful antioxidant, neutralizes some free radicals as well as increases the efficiency of the energy cycle
overall the effect of elevated CoQ in the muscles is a net reduction in free radicals
in addition, the free radicals from exercise continue to damage tissue long after exercise has ceased
hydroxy radicals react with fats inside cell membranes to make them go rancid (lipid peroxidation)
rancid fats themselves become free radicals called peroxy radicals and the cascade of events continues
with every bout of intense exercise, free radicals lead to an inflammatory chain reaction that can last 20 hours after exercise has ceased
there are 3 endogenous enzymes that can fight free radicals. catalase neutralizes hydrogen peroxides, SOD neutralizes superoxide radicals, and glutathione peroxidase neutralizes peroxides
after exercise, muscle and liver glutathione levels continue to decline, thus indicating their use to destroy free radicals
CoQ10 levels decline rapidly with age after 25
occurs widely in foods, especially polyunsaturated vegetable oils