Better Sleep for Shorter Days

Submitted by Vital Nutrients

Better Sleep

During the winter and early spring, reduced exposure to light during the day can actually interfere with proper melatonin secretion, which can exacerbate insomnia. An estimated 64 million Americans suffer from insomnia each year, reporting difficulty falling asleep, waking too early, and general sluggishness. Chronic sleep deprivation due to insomnia can lead to a deterioration of cognitive alertness, ability to function in the daytime, and may be associated with conditions, such as anxiety, depression, stress reaction, pain, sleep apnea, and hormonal changes.

Sleep hygiene may help people with insomnia improve the amount and quality of their sleep. When the days are shorter, this may include a regimen of light exposure in the early morning hours (before 10 am), whether by going outside, sitting by a window, or using a light box for about 30 minutes to help stimulate melatonin production and promote a healthy circadian rhythm. It is also helpful to maintain a consistent sleep schedule, limit caffeine to the morning, and avoid eating, vigorous exercise, and exposure to bright overhead lighting or computer screens in the few hours before bedtime.

In addition, certain herbal and nutritional supplements, along with a physiological dose of melatonin (0.25 mg in the hour before bedtime) may help promote relaxation of mind and body. It’s recommended to take a synergistic combination of some or all of the below botanicals and nutrients to help calm the central nervous system and support restful, refreshing sleep.

Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata) is a popular herbal remedy for anxiety and insomnia, with a long history of use in North America. Two studies have demonstrated its effectiveness in treating anxiety and in one of the studies it was found to be as effective as benzodiazepine medications. However, unlike benzodiazepines, regular use of passionflower extract does not appear to lead to dependence.

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis) is a medicinal plant in the mint family with mild sedative properties. It has traditionally been used for its calming effects on both the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract. In research studies, lemon balm has improved self-rated mood, increased calmness, and enhanced cognitive functioning in healthy people under ordinary circumstances, while performing stress-inducing tasks.

Hops (Humulus lupulus) are mostly known for their use in flavoring beer. It also can be used as a medicinal treatment for insomnia and anxiety and has been supported by animal and in vitro studies. Studies suggest that hops extract quiets the central nervous system by increasing GABA activity and activating melatonin receptors.

California Poppy (Eschscholtzia californicum) is a flowering plant in the poppy family that is known for its sedative effects and has been used historically for insomnia, nervous tension, and sensitivity to weather changes. Its ability to influence the metabolism of several neurotransmitters, including acetylcholine and serotonin, has been documented.

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is a flowering perennial plant well known for its ability to ease nervousness and promote sleep. Studies suggest that valerian terpenoids and flavonoids may exert anxiolytic and sedative properties by affecting GABA and GABA receptors. Some studies comparing valerian extract to benzodiazepines have found them to have similar effects.

L-theanine (N-ethyl-L-glutamine) is an amino acid present in green tea. In human studies, L-theanine supplementation increased alpha brainwave activity, indicating a more relaxed state. It also reduced physiologic signs of stress in people given stress-inducing tasks in the laboratory.

Lavender Essential Oil (Lavendula angustafolia) is a perennial flowering shrub with a distinctive fragrance that is widely believed to ease tension and enhance relaxation. Aromatherapy with lavender oil has had relaxing to sedating effects in a number of studies. Inhaling lavender oil during sleep increased deep, slow-wave sleep, decreased rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, and increased a reported sense of vigor upon morning waking in one study. A preliminary study also found that aromatherapy with lavender oil improved sleep in people with insomnia.

Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland to regulate the sleep/ wake cycle. Melatonin release is strongly affected by light and darkness, with levels normally dropping during daylight hours and rising at night to induce drowsiness and lower body temperature.

Melatonin levels are low in people with insomnia and supplemental melatonin has been found to be an effective treatment for insomnia in controlled trials. Melatonin may also help shift the sleep phase and improve sleep in shift workers and people with jet lag. In addition, melatonin is a powerful antioxidant.

Incorporating sleep hygiene techniques and supplementation into your daily routine can help improve the quality of your sleep and help decrease mental health and sleep related issues that occur during the cold weather months.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

November 9, 2018 at 3:30 pm Leave a comment

Bolster Your Immune System Naturally

Boost Immune SystemBy Jen Palmer, Naturopathic Doctor (ND) & NEEDS Education Director

As the dreaded flu season descends upon us, you may be feeling a lot of pressure to get a flu vaccination. Television commercials, internet articles, and maybe even family and coworkers tell you it’s the only way to stay healthy. Vaccines are presented as a cheap and easy way to stay healthy, but as we all know, the flu vaccination has a low success rate for all ages and an even lower effectiveness in seniors.

If you’re looking for better odds when it comes to your health, a healthier bet is to boost your immune system naturally to give your body a fighting chance. A strong immune system will not only keep the flu away, but it will also enhance your overall health and longevity. Here are a few suggestions to help you breeze through the cold weather season!

 Vitamin D

There’s an abundance of research on vitamin D that shows it supports bone strength, immune function, and has a slew of other benefits. One of the many published studies looked at its role in cold and flu prevention. The focus of this 2007 study was actually to evaluate vitamin D’s role in bone strength, but they also happened to track incidence of colds and flu in the participants.

For the first two years of the study, participants were given either 400 IU of vitamin D3 per day or a placebo. For the third and final year, the vitamin D dosage was increased to 2,000 IU per day. At the end of the study, 34 out of 208 participants (total) reported cold or flu symptoms; only eight were from the vitamin D group and the remaining 26 were taking the placebo. In those taking the placebo, colds and flu were clustered in the winter months, while those taking vitamin D had less infections, which were scattered throughout the year. And when they took 2,000 IU of vitamin D, only one person reported having a cold or flu.

Thorne’s Arabinex

Thorne’s Arabinex (Larch arabinogalactan) is a polysaccharide powder derived from the wood of the Larch pine tree (Larix species) and it’s comprised of approximately 98 percent arabinogalactan. Arabinogalactans are found in a variety of plants, but they are more abundant in the Larch pine tree. Larch arabinogalactan is a safe and effective immune-stimulating phytochemical that has been shown to stimulate natural killer cell activity. It is also FDA approved

for use as a dietary fiber and may aid the intestinal immune system. The typical adult dosage is one to three tablespoons per day in divided doses and the powder is usually mixed with water or juice, but it can be added to food if desired.

Oregano

Oregano contains the active chemical rosmarinic acid, which is a potent antioxidant with immune benefits. It also contains phytochemicals that are antimicrobial and anti-viral, which can help prevent respiratory problems related to the flu. You can use oregano in your cooking, but you can get a super dose in supplement form. OregaMax, a wild oregano formula, supports natural mineral intake and more. This wild oregano grows directly on rock in the Mediterranean mountains, making it rich in natural trace minerals. Unlike commercial oregano, OregaMax is undiluted. This is the crude herb of wild, high-mountain oregano in combination with Rhus Coriaria, organic garlic powder, and organic onion powder. It is the most potent wild oregano whole herb available.

 Natural Immune Support

It’s smart to bolster your ability to stay healthy during the cold and flu season with a little help from immune support supplements. Some of the immune support products should be taken consistently throughout the entire winter season and others are designed to be used just when

you start to feel initial symptoms. It’s good to have these on hand so you can start them the second you need them, since that ensures a better success rate. Nutrients and herbs can add that extra boost your immune system needs during the challenging winter months.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

November 1, 2018 at 3:18 pm Leave a comment

The All-Around Health Benefits of Aged Garlic Extract

By Carmia Borek, Ph.D.Aged Garlic

Garlic ranks highly among health protecting foods, largely due to its antioxidant sulfur compounds. Fresh garlic, however, is not for everyone; it can cause indigestion and its odor is a possible social deterrent. But, the health benefits of garlic do not depend on freshness or pungency. Scientific studies show that aged garlic extract (AGE), which is odorless and richer in antioxidants than fresh or other forms of garlic preparations, is more effective in boosting immunity and protecting against cardiovascular disease, cancer, aging, and drug toxicity.

 AGED GARLIC EXTRACT

AGE is produced by extracting and aging organic, fresh garlic at room temperature for 20 months. By combining this extraction/aging process, the antioxidant levels in the extract becomes higher than those in fresh garlic. The process also converts garlic’s more unstable substances that are generally not bioavailable to the body, such as its odor-generating compound oxidant allicin, to more stable, bioavailable, and health-promoting substances.

Garlic aged in this way contains stable water-soluble sulfur substances, including S-allyl mercaptocysteine (SAMC) and S-allyl cysteine (SAC), which are powerful antioxidants and have high bioavailability with 98 percent absorption into the blood. Also present are some oil-soluble sulfur compounds, flavonoids, a phenol allixin, and other nutrients, including selenium. However, it’s the water-soluble sulfur compounds that are largely responsible for the health benefits of AGE.

 ANTIOXIDANT EFFECTS

Reactive oxygen species (ROS), which include free radicals, are toxic by-products of a normal metabolism. ROS increase during inflammation, exercise, and exposure to environmental pollutants, radiation, and sunlight. ROS damage DNA, lipids, and proteins, which leads to aging and disease.

AGE’s antioxidant activity enhances the body’s ability to make glutathione, providing powerful protection against ROS damage.

 CARDIOVASCULAR PROTECTION

The risk of heart disease, stroke, and dementia increases with high levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides, high blood pressure, platelet stickiness (promotes aggregation and clotting), and high homocysteine (the possible result of a folate deficiency). Clinical studies show that aged garlic and its major compound SAC reduce those risks. Taken at a dosage of 2.4 gm to 4.8 gm per day for six months, AGE lowered total cholesterol by 5 to 7 percent; reduced LDL, triglycerides, and blood pressure; prevented platelet aggregation; and increased HDL (good) cholesterol. SACs act similarly to statin drugs and can work synergistically with them to reduce cholesterol. With a folate deficiency, aged garlic lowers homocysteine, which helps prevent the serious consequences of this toxic amino acid.

In a recent breakthrough at the University of California (LA), cardiologists reported that AGE cut risk factors for heart attack by 50 percent. The placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial showed that AGE given to cardiac patients, at 1,200 mg per day for a year, reduced coronary artery plaque build-up by more than 50 percent and increased HDL compared to the placebo. AGE lowered blood homocysteine, while patients on the placebo showed an increase.

These results add to a growing body of data showing an AGE supplement lowers cardiovascular disease risk factors, including anti-clotting and anti-inflammatory effects, stimulation of blood circulation, and the reduction of LDL, triglycerides and blood pressure.

 IMMUNE BOOSTER, ANTI-VIRAL, ANTI-BACTERIAL & ANTI-FUNGAL

AGE boosts immunity more effectively than fresh garlic by enhancing immune cell numbers and activity, improving specific immune actions in AIDS patients, and increasing the activity of natural killer (NK) cells that destroy invading organisms and cancer cells. In a three week clinical study, subjects ingesting 1,800 mg of aged garlic increased NK cell activity by 155.5 percent, while those receiving 35 grams of fresh garlic per day (the equivalent of 10 cloves) had a 139.9 percent increase, indicating superior immune-enhancing benefits. A study with AIDS patients showed that NK cells depleted by AIDS, rose to normal levels after six weeks of supplementation with the aged garlic.

Aged garlic is anti-fungal, preventing the growth of Candida albicans, the cause of infections in HIV-positive patients and in sexually transmitted conditions. AGE also kills Helicobacter pylori (H-pylori), the bacteria linked to stomach ulcers and cancer, which is resistant to antibiotic treatment in 84 percent of infected individuals.

 CANCER PREVENTION

Cancer is caused by damage (or mutations) in DNA that accumulates over time; ROS injury and chemical carcinogen binding are major causes of DNA damage. Garlic has potent anti-cancer effects, reducing the risk of human stomach, colon, and prostate cancer. In pre-clinical studies, AGE prevented cancers of the mammary glands, bladder, colon, stomach, liver, lung, and esophagus. The anti-cancer effects include: eliminating toxic ROS, increasing glutathione, preventing carcinogens from binding to DNA, and increasing carcinogen disposal.

 CANCER THERAPEUTICS

The water-soluble SAMC, which is unique to AGE due to the aging process, may also help in cancer therapy. SAMC and SAC stop human prostate cancer cell growth by 80 percent as it lowers testosterone levels needed for their growth and reduces PSA, the prostate cancer marker. SAMC prevents the growth of breast cancer cells and inhibits colon cancer cell growth by 71 percent, inducing cell suicide (apoptosis).

 PREVENTING DRUG TOXICITY

The pain killer acetaminophen (Tylenol) produces ROS. If taken in excess, acetaminophen depletes the liver of detoxifying glutathione and may lead to liver failure and death. Antioxidant rich aged garlic prevents acetaminophen toxicity by scavenging ROS, increasing glutathione, and acting as an antidote in cases of overdose. Volunteers ingesting 10 ml per day of AGE for three months, then given one gram of acetaminophen before and after the AGE course, were protected against acetaminophen toxicity.

Aged garlic may also help in cancer treatment by protecting against side effects of ROS-producing anti-cancer drugs. AGE prevents liver toxicity from methotrexate and fluorouracil and protects heart cells against doxorubicin toxicity.

 These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

October 5, 2018 at 11:54 am Leave a comment

Is Your Cholesterol High Enough to be Healthy?

By Jen Palmer, Naturopathic Doctor (ND) & NEEDS Education DirectorCholesterol

Cholesterol serves many important functions within the body and lowering it too much can actually be harmful to our health. Unfortunately, the guidelines recommending extremely low cholesterol levels have led to the over-prescription of statin drugs (cholesterol-lowering medications), which may lead to potentially dangerous side effects.

Moderate levels of cholesterol are not the enemy we’ve been told they are. Cholesterol actually plays several important roles in the body; it’s a precursor for many hormones, serves as “insulation” around nerves, helps form bile acids (which help us digest fats and absorb fat-soluble vitamins), and it’s an important component of every cell’s membrane.

Low cholesterol levels may account for many symptoms of diseases. In women, it can lead to hormonal imbalances and negatively affect the menstrual cycle. Low cholesterol levels have also been associated with mental issues, such as depression and violent tendencies. Depression can occur in an individual with a total cholesterol level of just 150-160 (mg/dL), but it can subside when cholesterol levels increase.

Some research studies indicate that excessively low cholesterol levels may result in other health problems and increase mortality rates; therefore, the level considered to be “healthy” (200 mg/dL) should be adjusted upwards. In a cholesterol study conducted in Japan, 11,869 people were monitored for almost 12 years. Their cholesterol levels were recorded and they were divided into one of four groups based on their total cholesterol levels.

Those in the group with the lowest levels (<160 mg/dL) were shown to have a significant increased risk of hemorrhagic stroke and heart failure, excluding myocardial infarction, as compared to those with higher levels of cholesterol. They also found that there was no significant increased risk of these cardiovascular events in people with the highest levels of total cholesterol.

Statins can have a variety of side effects. Published studies indicate that some of the effects include: memory loss, neuropathy, mitochondrial dysfunction, confusion, increased blood sugar levels, liver disorders, and muscle pain.

 Red Yeast Rice

Red yeast rice is one supplement that can reduce total cholesterol and LDL “bad” cholesterol. It contains the natural form of lovastatin, the chemical that statin drugs mimic. Small clinical trials have shown that it can reduce total cholesterol and LDL by about 25 percent in a few month, whereas the placebo only reduced LDL by 6 percent. The recommended dosage is 1,200- 2,400 mg per day.

CoQ10

CoQ10 is a naturally-occurring substance produced by the liver and is vital to energy production at the mitochondrial level of the body’s cells. Mitochondria are microscopic organs within a cell that are responsible for combining oxygen and the nutrients from food to produce the energy necessary to power the cell. The heart, in particular, contains an especially high concentration of mitochondria and CoQ10.

CoQ10 is a multifaceted nutrient. As a powerful antioxidant, it may help prevent damage to tissues in the body from free radicals. It also helps preserve vitamin E in the body. Studies have linked vitamin E with helping to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol, which damages arterial walls. Cholesterol oxidation may also be associated with atherosclerosis—the build up of fatty deposits within arteries, which is connected to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke.

As we age, our CoQ10 levels drop. Research also shows that CoQ10 levels in people with heart disease are lower. Plus, those who are taking statin drugs tend to experience lower levels of CoQ10, since the same mechanism that inhibits cholesterol production also inhibits the body’s production of CoQ10.

 Plant Sterols

Plant sterols and their esters are naturally-occurring plant compounds that are similar in structure, yet slightly different from cholesterol. Plant sterols can be found in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, grains, and certain oils. Research shows that these compounds compete with the absorption of dietary cholesterol in the gastrointestinal tract. Supplementation with high doses of plant sterols can significantly lower cholesterol levels and have been shown to work synergistically with other cholesterol-lowering therapies.

Research has shown plant sterols, or sterol esters, to be so effective that numerous food manufacturers, such as those making orange juice and rice drinks, are now incorporating them into their products. Increasingly, dietary supplements are also including plant sterols and using the health claim that has been allowed for products containing at least 800 mg of plant sterols daily.

 Fish Oil

Fish oil contains high amounts of polyunsaturated fats called omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon, mackerel, tuna, and other types of cold-water fish are plentiful in omega-3s, which comes from the plankton that they—or the fish they eat—live on. Omega-3s from fish contain both EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). EPA is the direct precursor for the anti-inflammatory prostaglandins and may help prevent the blood vessel inflammation associated with atherosclerosis. DHA is of primary importance to the structural integrity of the membranes of the nervous system.

The consumption of omega-3s supplements from fish have been associated with support of the cardiovascular system as well as the maintenance of neurological, ocular, joint, and skin health. Look for fish oils from cold-water fish and those that are rigorously tested for the absence of heavy metals and other environmental toxins.

For anyone trying to maintain healthy cholesterol levels and cardiac function, natural solutions like red yeast rice, CoQ10, plant sterols, and fish oil have been extensively researched and have anecdotal evidence to support their effectiveness.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

September 14, 2018 at 10:44 am Leave a comment

The 5 Criteria of the Purity Health Profile

Submitted by Purity CoffeePurity CoffeePurity Coffee is completely focused on health from bean to bag. They roast for the highest levels of antioxidants and the lowest levels of acrylamide. One of the easiest changes anyone can make to their diet is to switch to healthier coffee!

1) Purity is Always Organic

Organic coffees have been produced by following approved methods of agriculture and handling. These methods integrate cultural, biological, and mechanical practices, which includes cycling of resources, promoting ecological balance, and conserving biodiversity.

2) Purity Standards Require “Near Zero Defects”

The highest standard of coffee with the least number of defects is classified as “specialty grade” and that is the Purity starting point. Green coffee defects are substandard coffee beans that can occur for a multitude of reasons, such as: adverse climate conditions, poor agricultural, harvesting and processing practices, and problematic transportation or storage of the coffee. Some of these defects are difficult to avoid, but others can be avoided. Regardless, to get defect-free coffee, most coffee must be sorted so that whatever defects remain can be removed.

3) Purity Contains NO Mold…Ever

Mold and mycotoxins are a serious health concern, with accepted levels for consumption differing from country to country. If mold is present, it can only be eliminated at high roast temperatures. Unfortunately, these high temperatures may increase the formation of acrylamide or create the carcinogen Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon and eliminate the healthy polyphenols and chlorogenic acids in coffee. Therefore, we cannot tolerate mold at any stage. Purity uses a routine which confirms that as coffee passes through each step of the supply chain it is free from contamination. They also lab test their green beans regularly to ensure that this remains the case.

4) Purity Sources Sustainable Coffee

Purity not only cares about the health of their coffee, they also care about the health of the people who produce it and the environment in which it is grown.

5) Purity has Exceptional Taste

Purity Coffee’s industry-recognized cuppers taste a selection of coffees that fit their Purity Health Profile and select the best tasting ones.

The Purity Difference

Less than 1% of coffees worldwide fit all five of these criteria and Purity Coffee searches diligently for coffees that do. All Purity Coffee is specialty grade coffee, but not all specialty grade coffee is Purity Coffee!

To order your Purity Coffee, please visit puritycoffee.com, call (844) 787-4892 Ext. 102, or email support@puritycoffee.com. Plus, enter the promo code NEEDS to receive a special 30% discount off your first order!

 

 

September 4, 2018 at 1:10 pm Leave a comment

It’s NOT Easy to get this Super Nutrient from Your Diet!

Submitted By LifeExtensionVitamin KObtaining enough vitamin K through your diet can be difficult. The most common form of vitamin K, known as K1, is present in leafy green vegetables. Not only do many people avoid these types of vegetables, but the K1 is also tightly bound to the plant fibers so it’s not easily absorbable.

In contrast, vitamin K2, which is found in meat, egg yolks, and dairy, is up to 10 times more bioavailable than K1 and remains active in the body for far longer. If you have to avoid these foods for health reasons, it’s essential to take a K2 supplement!

Super K with Advanced K2 Complex provides the three forms of vitamin K that can be utilized by the body: vitamin K1 and dual forms of vitamin K2, known as MK-4 and MK-7. This comprehensive vitamin K formula promotes both bone and arterial health.

 Super K with Advanced K2 Complex Benefits at a Glance:

  • Maintains bone density by facilitating calcium transport into bones
  • Promotes a healthy heart and vascular system
  • Includes the most bioavailable forms of vitamin K1 and K2
  • Bioavailable over a sustained 24-hour period

The method by which vitamin K supports bones and arteries is related to its relationship with calcium. Research has shown that low vitamin K status interferes with the function of a protein called matrix Gla-protein (MGP). This protein is vitamin K dependent and must be carboxylated to function properly.

Without adequate vitamin K, MGP remains uncarboxylated. Studies have found that uncarboxylated MGP accumulates at the site of arterial calcification. Without normal levels of carboxylated MGP, calcium in the blood can bind to the arterial wall resulting in calcification.

 Health Benefits of Vitamin K

The Rotterdam Heart Study, a largescale, well-controlled clinical trial that tracked 4,800 subjects for seven years, revealed that people who consume the most dietary K2 have healthier hearts when compared to people who consume the least. Additional studies have shown that higher vitamin K levels also correspond to less calcium deposits in the aorta and can even cause a 37% regression of preformed arterial calcification.

Different Forms of Vitamin K

Super K with Advanced K2 Complex makes it easier to get enough vitamin K by including the two forms of vitamin K2, MK-4 and MK-7. The MK-4 form is the most rapidly absorbed type of vitamin K. However, it only lasts in the bloodstream for a few hours. In contrast, the MK-7 form is available to the body for a full 24-hour period at much higher levels. Combining two forms of vitamin K2 provides both rapid and sustained absorption of this critical nutrient, so your healthy blood levels are maintained throughout the day. Just one daily softgel of Super K with Advanced K2 Complex provides 100 mcg of vitamin K2 (MK-7); 1,000 mcg of vitamin K2 (MK-4); and 1,500 mcg of vitamin K1. This unique super K complex is the most comprehensive vitamin K formula and an excellent way to get your daily dose of vitamin K!

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

August 21, 2018 at 6:21 pm Leave a comment

Turmeric Adulteration

By Dr. Jen Palmer, Naturopathic Doctor (ND) & NEEDS Education Director

tumeric-powder-root-1296x728One of the most popular dietary supplements on the market today is curcumin, the active compound from the Indian herb turmeric. Some authorities report that it’s been the number one selling supplement for the past five years, and that’s a well-deserved status. Curcumin has been extensively researched and proven to be effective for a multitude of health conditions. It reduces inflammation and has been shown to significantly improve symptoms of osteoarthritis (joint pain).

In one study, a group of patients with arthritis took curcumin supplements with their medication and felt significantly greater relief from pain as compared to patients that just took the medication alone. It is also a potent antioxidant and can support the liver in detoxification. Curcumin has the advantage of being able to cross the blood-brain barrier, meaning it has the ability to protect the brain from free radical damage and potentially reduce the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, as shown in several studies. In fact, in India where turmeric is used abundantly as a spice in foods, Alzheimer’s rates are significantly lower than in the United States.

The downside of an herb becoming this popular and in such high demand, is that unscrupulous raw material suppliers may adulterate the herb in order to make it more profitable for themselves. Historically, there have been examples of this occurring in the industry, such as with goldenseal. Goldenseal is expensive, so dishonest raw material suppliers would try to pass off less expensive herbs of the same golden color as the more expensive goldenseal.

Turmeric sales have doubled between 2013 and 2016, and as a result, it has fallen prey to unscrupulous practices as well. The American Botanical Council recently published a bulletin on this topic as part of the Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program in cooperation with the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia and the National Center for Natural Products Research. What they found is that some raw suppliers are adding cheap, synthetic curcuminoids to natural supplements to increase their profits. One of the authors of the bulletin stated, “The adulteration of this plant species is an extensive, complex, and multifactorial enterprise driven by economic incentive within the food ingredient category.”

Sadly, basic testing cannot differentiate between synthetic and natural curcuminoids. It requires expensive carbon isotope testing to distinguish the fake from the natural. Visually, the fake and real products may appear to be identical through the use of colorants. These colorants may pose a health risk considering that some are derived from lead chromate or metanil yellow. The typical curcumin user may take a gram or more of the supplement per day, meaning it could add up to ingesting a large quantity of toxic colorants.

The take home message here is that it is wise to purchase curcumin from brands that can be trusted. It is very important that a manufacturer takes the steps necessary to ensure that proper testing of the curcumin raw material is completed and to only source from reputable raw material suppliers. We’ve done the research for you and feel confident in recommending the curcumin products found on our website: https://www.needs.com/prod_detail_list/htc_Curcumin.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

August 10, 2018 at 4:54 pm Leave a comment

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