SpectraCell Blog

Elissa Rodriguez

Recent Posts

Why is high blood sugar so bad?

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Mon, Nov 07, 2016 @ 02:06 PM

sugar.jpgDid you know that November is National Diabetes Month? This is extremely appropriate after Halloween and the sugar binging that usually accompanies it. While feasting on leftover candy, you might want to keep the following information in mind. After ingestion, sugar is not simply “burned off.” Even if you are fit and lean, sugar is harmful because it accelerates cellular aging. Sugar in the bloodstream attaches to proteins, creating something called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). These end products render those proteins inactive, and are commonly used as a marker for aging. In fact, one of the hallmark diagnostic tests for chronically elevated blood sugar/ diabetes is HbA1C, which is an AGE of a hemoglobin molecule. Sugar profoundly alters hormone balance, especially over time, which can set off a cascade of metabolic dysfunction that further accelerates aging systemically, from the arteries to the liver and skin. The dangers of sugar extend beyond a few extra pounds – this ubiquitous substance (found in everything from salad dressings to condiments to your favorite desserts) – actually ages the body from the inside out. 

 

 

Topics: diabetes, sugar, cardiometabolic, advanced glycation end products, cellular aging, high blood sugar, sugar binge

Why is vitamin B5 called the anti-stress vitamin?

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Wed, Oct 26, 2016 @ 11:03 AM


stress.jpgAlso known as pantothenate or pantothenic acid, vitamin B5 is sometimes referred to as the “anti-stress” vitamin because it can reverse some biological damage caused by stress. Physical, emotional, and psychological stresses trigger the adrenal glands to secrete cortisol (a long-term stress hormone) and adrenaline (a short-term stress hormone). Chronic stress drives the production of too much of any of these hormones, which causes damage in the body long after the stress signal has ended. When vitamin B5 is present in adequate amounts, it is able to down-regulate the secretion of cortisol, and the body is able to recover. However, in a deficiency state, the adrenal glands are unable to cope. Under these circumstances, they cannot launch a healthy response against the multiple daily stressors that assail us, and the chronic (often unavoidable) stress eventually takes a physiological toll.

Find out what whether you're vitamin B5 deficient today with our Micronutrient test!

 

Topics: micronutrients, micronutrient testing, Stress, Vitamin B5, pantothenate, anti-stress, pantothenic acid

A Powerful but Overlooked Strategy to Prevent Breast Cancer

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Wed, Oct 19, 2016 @ 02:46 PM


Womens-Health_cropped.jpgBreast cancer is often caused by a compromised ability to detoxify estrogen. Although this hormone is essential– it contributes to skin, bone, psychological, and reproductive health – excess estrogen and the conversion of estrogen into dangerous metabolites can drive cancers in hormone-sensitive tissues (breasts, cervix, uterus, and ovaries).

Estrogens are a group of structurally similar hormones that are metabolized continuously in the body. Sometimes these forms are protective, and sometimes they are metabolized into harmful forms that can stimulate tumor formation or initiate breast cancer. Whether estrogen becomes protective or damaging depends on micronutrient availability in bodily tissues that drive these metabolic pathways. One example is vitamin B6. This nutrient helps detoxify excess estrogen so that it does not cause tumors. Similarly, magnesium drives the enzyme that removes toxic forms of estrogen from the body. Cysteine – a powerful antioxidant - prevents estrogen from being oxidized into a dangerous form that promotes breast cancer. In short – when the appropriate micronutrients are biologically available, toxic forms of estrogen can be minimized, thus diminishing the potential for breast tumor development. 


Download our Estrogen - Nutrient Correlations Wheel

Topics: micronutrients, breast cancer, estrogen and breast cancer, hormone balance, breast cancer awareness

Breast Cancer Prevention or Earlier Diagnosis –Which is Better?

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 @ 07:39 PM


breast_cancer_ribbon.pngThe short answer is - both. Ask most women, and many will tell you that a mammogram is the most powerful tool when it comes to breast cancer prevention. Unfortunately, getting a mammogram is not truly preventive, although it is a very powerful tool for early diagnosis. In other words: mammograms do not prevent breast cancer from developing, even though these procedures facilitate early diagnosis that in turn allows providers to target the cancer in its earlier, more treatable stage. Prevention is dependent on healthy breast tissue, and to be healthy, the body’s detoxification pathways, which are dependent on several micronutrients, must perform optimally. Micronutrient deficiencies compromise this process, leaving the potential for rogue cells to flourish and become tumors. This is also true for other hormone-sensitive tissues (cervical, uterine, and ovarian). Prevention begins by providing the body with the necessary materials (micronutrients) in appropriate amounts to detoxify and repair cellular damage, daily. 

 

Topics: micronutrients, breast cancer, awareness, early detection, breast cancer preventnion

CoQ10

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Wed, Oct 05, 2016 @ 03:58 PM

heart_apple.jpg

Why you should know about CoQ10 if you are taking a statin.

Most Americans have heard of statins, a group of drugs commonly prescribed to lower cholesterol levels.  But many people are not familiar with coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), the micronutrient that is known to be depleted by most people who take statins. In fact, the original patent for statins (AKA “HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors”) acknowledged this as early as 1990; however, this is still not widely known today. CoQ10 (AKA ubiquinone because it is so ubiquitous in the body) is a substance that creates energy, the most fundamental of all cell functions. Tissues with a high energy requirement – heart, liver and muscles – require CoQ10 to work.  If these cells don’t have sufficient CoQ10, a person may eventually experience fatigue, muscular pains, or both. 

Do you know your CoQ10 status? Get your SpectraCell Micronutrient Test today!

GET TESTED 

Topics: micronutrients, Coenzyme Q10, Cardiovascular Health, Heart Disease, Nutrition, Heart Health, cardiovascular disease, statin, chronic, CoQ10, disease

What is Triage Theory, and why is it important to our health?

Posted by Elissa Rodriguez on Fri, Sep 30, 2016 @ 01:31 PM

cells2.jpgTriage Theory states that the body uses whatever nutrients are available to ensure that the most basic and pressing metabolic functions are fueled first; if a needed nutrient is not available, the body compromises long-term health to ensure short-term critical function. This is analogous to a triage situation in any emergency room: prioritizing a patient’s needs based on the severity of his or her situation/ condition. In the same way, our bodies naturally “triage” on a daily basis. Cells will sacrifice nutrients from non-survival functions for immediate physiological needs. For example, nutrients will be diverted from tissue repair to meet a more critical need such as fighting off an infection or secreting cortisol to deal with an imminent stressor. When an adequate supply of necessary nutrients is available to all cells, short-term and long-term health is preserved.  However, when not enough of these nutrients are available  – and this is often the case given the prevalence of a nutrient-poor diet, stress, and other lifestyle habits that impact nutrient intake and absorption - the stage for the development of chronic disease is set, negatively impacting long-term health.

  • LINK TO ABSTRACT Plasma folate, vitamin B-6, and vitamin B-12 and breast cancer risk in BRCA1- and BRCA2-mutation carriers: a prospective study.

 

Topics: micronutrients, Cancer, Nutrition, chronic, DNA breakage, Triage Theory, disease