The Whole Vs. The Sum of Its Parts
Friday, March 01, 2013
"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."
The chemicals of life act in balanced concert with one another. Only after the baseline of essential nutrients is met on a daily basis is it considered completely safe to add individual nutrients in higher amounts for therapeutic purposes.
So, when will we stop expecting stunning results from clinical nutrition studies designed around single nutrients?
An example of this folly can be illustrated through the use of vitamin C. Many people supplement with very high doses of vitamin C. This makes sense since the work of the late Linus Pauling and others demonstrated that the antioxidant and immune properties of vitamin C can help prevent and even shorten a bout with the cold or flu virus, stimulate collagen production, enhance the synthesis of the neurotransmitter norepinephrine, lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases and stroke, reduce the development of cataracts and glaucoma, as well as stimulate weight loss.
However, what is forgotten is that vitamin C is a powerful diuretic that flushes out toxins, which is good, but it also flushes out water-soluble nutrients such as the B-complex and many minerals, which helps explain some less than positive vitamin C studies. Many people, who constantly take high dose vitamin C without appropriate buffering and a full-spectrum multiple back-up, eventually develop B-complex vitamin deficiency, as well as a lack of minerals such as calcium, magnesium and others.
What we have learned is that we cannot fragment nutrition and expect optimal results.
Enter the concept of totality. If each nutrient is a part of the vastly complex human biochemistry, it makes sense to ensure that all the players in the infinite chemical dance of life are present.
Remember that the famous nutrition science guru, Bruce Ames, PhD, teaches that even the slightest micronutrient deficiency, over time, speeds up the aging and degenerative disease process.
The bottom line for optimal health and age management: Eat a clean, well-balanced diet that includes the current CDC recommended 9 to 13 servings of fruits and vegetables a day whenever possible. Back this up with daily exercise and a full-spectrum multiple that further guarantees daily consumption of the vital nutrients that are too often destroyed by commercial food production processes.
Ellen Troyer, MT MA
Biosyntrx CEO / Chief Research Officer
When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth. Sir Arthur Connan Doyle (1859-1930)
While reading through the personal longevity secrets of some of the pioneers of age management including Jeffrey Bland, PhD, Jeffrey Blumberg, PhD, Robert Goldman, MD, PhD, Denham Harman, MD, PhD, Ronald Klatz, MD, DO and others, I noticed that every one of them put daily exercise in the number one spot and they all listed multiple nutritional supplements, including multiple grams of vitamin C near the top of their lists. They also all mentioned adequate sleep, stress management, community involvement and a passion for something.
Prevention of diabetes-induced cardiovascular complications upon treatment with antioxidants. Xu YJ, Tappia PS, et al. Heart Fail Rev. 2013 Feb 23 [abstract]
Association of chromosome damage detected as micronuclei with hematological diseases and micronutrient status. Lai A, Ames BN. Mutagenesis, 2011 Jan, 26 (1): 57-62 [abstract]
Prevention of mutation, cancer, and other age-associated diseases by optimizing micronutrient intake. Ames GN, J Nucleic Acids, 2010 Sep 22, 2010 [abstract]
Optimal micronutrients delay mitochondrial decay and age-associated diseases. Ames BN. Mech Ageing Dev. 2010 Jul-Aug, 13 [abstract]
Vitamins for chronic disease prevention in adults: scientific review. Fairfield KM, Fletcher RH. JAMA. 2002 Jun 19;287(23):3116-26. Review. [ abstract]
Micronutrients and genomic stability: a new paradigm for recommended dietary allowances (RDAs). Fenech M. Food Chemistry Toxicology 2002 Aug;40(8): 1113-7 [abstract]
Which dietary reference intake is best suited to serve as the basis for nutrition labeling for daily values? Yates AA. Journal of Nutrition 2006 Oct;136(10):2457-62 [abstract]