SpectraCell Blog

Magnesium, Vital for Proper Cell Function

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Mar 27, 2014 @ 02:32 PM

Magnesium is predominantly found intracellularly, wheremagnesium it is vital for proper cell functions. Magnesium is the second most prevalent intracellular cation (after potassium).  Magnesium functions are numerous and essential, including enzyme activation (over 300 types), neuromuscular activity, membrane transport and interactions, energy metabolism (carbohydrates, fats, proteins), and roles in calcium and phosphorus metabolism. 

Deficiency  Symptoms

Deficiency symptoms are both acute (Trouseau and Chvostek signs, muscle spasms, tetany, cardia arrythmias, ataxia, vertigo, convulsions, organic brain syndrome) and chronic (thrombophlebitis, hemolytic anemia, bone loss, depressed immune function, poor wound healing, hyper irritability, burxism, hyperlipidemia, fatigue, hypertension). Those at risk for Magnesium deficiency include:  malabsorption, malnourished, alcoholics, diabetics, diuretic therapy, children, elderly, pregnant and lactating women, post menopausal women with osteoperosis, athletes, digitalis therapy, long-term therapy with antibiotics, chemotherapeutic and immunosuppressive medications.  In addition, the following diseases are associated with Magnesium deficiency:  cardiovascular disease, cirrhosis, renal disease, parathyroid diseases, thyroid conditions.

Repletion  Information
Dietary sources richest in Magnesium (per serving) are:
  • Nutritional Supplements  
  • Seeds (especially  pumpkin)
  • Nuts 
  • Soybeans
  • Whole Grains     
  • Potatoes
  • Legumes
  • Fresh Vegetables
Watch or download Dr. Grabowski's presentation on "Connecting the Nutrients" here

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Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, Multivitamins, Vitamins, Minerals, micronutrient, Nutrient

The Need for Glutathione

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Mar 20, 2014 @ 11:28 AM

glutathioneGlutathione is implicated in many cellular function including antioxidant protection and detoxification. It is also essential for the maintenance of cell membrane integrity in red blood cells. Intracellular glutathione concentrations are principally derived by intracellular synthesis, as few cells directly uptake glutathione from the surrounding extracellular fluid.  The high concentration of glutathione in virtually all cells clearly indicates its importance in metabolic and oxidative detoxification processes.  Glutathione may be considered the preeminent antioxidant. 

Deficiency Symptoms

A wide range of human conditions such as aging, cancer, atherosclerosis, arthritis, viral infections, AIDS, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative diseases and pulmonary diseases may be produced or made worse by "free radicals." Their treatment or prevention often includes antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E, carotenoids and selenium.  Glutathione is an essential component of the antioxidant defense system: producing a "sparing effect" for both tocopherol and ascorbate by reducing the oxidized forms, and by eliminating hydrogen peroxide by reacting with glutathione peroxidase.  Cellular glutathione functions to decrease the formation of oxidized LDL, implicated in the development of atherosclerosis. T-lymphocytes become deficient in glutathione in the progression of AIDS which impairs immune function.  Glutathione is also required for the synthesis of some prostaglandins from n-3 and n-6 polyunstaturated fatty acids which are important in the inflammatory response.  Patients with adult respiratory distress syndrome are favorably affected by treatments that increase cellular glutathione.

Download our Nutrient Function and Deficiency symptoms handout here.

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Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, Glutathione, Stress, Aging, Muscle recovery, Energy

Chromium an Essential Mineral YOU Need to Know About!

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Feb 13, 2014 @ 10:24 AM

Chromium is an essential trace mineral that plays an chromium resized 600important role in optimizing insulin function and the regulation of blood glucose levels. Chromium may also be anti-atherogenic and assist in lowering cholesterol. 

Following food intake, blood glucose levels rise causing insulin to be secreted by the pancreas. Insulin lowers blood glucose levels by increasing the rate at which glucose enters a person's cells.  Chromium is believed to facilitate the attachment of insulin to the cell's insulin receptors.  Studies also indicate that chromium participates in cholesterol metabolism, suggesting a role for this mineral in maintaining normal blood cholesterol levels and preventing atherosclerosis.  Chromium also plays a role in nucleic acid synthesis.

Deficiency Symptoms:

Due to the processing methods that remove most of the naturally occurring chromium from commonly consumed foods, dietary deficiency of chromium is believed to be widespread in the United States.  Chromium deficiency may increase the likelihood of insulin resistance, a condition in which the cells of the body do not respond to the presence of insulin.  Insulin resistance can lead to elevated blood levels of insulin (hyperinsulinemia) and elevated blood levels of glucose, which can ultimately cause heart disease and/or diabetes.  Deficiency of chromium is associated with metabolic syndrome.  Metabolic syndrome represents a constellation of symptoms, including hyperinsulinemia, high blood pressure, high triglyceride levels, high blood sugar levels and low HDL cholesterol levels.  These symptoms increase one's risk for heart disease.  Low levels of chromium are also associated with an increased risk of coronary artery disease incidence and mortality. 

Chromium deficiency correlates with depressed nucleic acid synthesis.  Chromium is essential for maintaining the structural stability of proteins and nucleic acids.  Animal studies have also found that this element is also vital for healthy fetal growth and development.  Studies on humans have established that premature infants born full-term. Others have found that multiparous women (women who've given birth two or more times) have far lower body chromium levels compared to nulliparae (women who've never given birth).  These findings suggest that chromium is an essential trace element during fetal growth and development.

Download our Nutrient Chart and the Nutrient Correlation Chart on Diabetes, both handouts provide information as to how important is Chromium.

Check your chromium levels and all other essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and how your immune system is performing.

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Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, Heart Disease, diabetes, expecting mothers, deficiency, Minerals, Gastrointestinal Tract, Chromium

Calcium the MOST abundant mineral in the body!

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Jan 22, 2014 @ 12:54 PM

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body, withcalcium 99% residing in bones and teeth. As a component of hard tissues, calcium fulfills a structural role to maintain body size and act as attachments for musculoskeletal tissues. The remaining 1% of calcium is present in blood and soft tissues.

Functions of non-skeletal calcium include: enzyme activation, second messenger roles (transmitting hormonal information), blood clotting, cell and cell organelle membrane function (stabilization and transport), nerve impulse transmission and muscular contraction, tone, and irritability. Calcium levels in the blood are maintained within very strict limits by dietary intake, hormonal regulation and a rapidly exchangeable pool in bone tissue.

Deficiency Symptoms:

Calcium deficiencies are both acute and chronic. Acute calcium deficiency relates to lack of ionized calcium, causing increased muscular and nervous irritability, muscle spasms, muscle cramps and tetany. Chronic calcium deficiency manifests as bone loss disorders (osteoporosis, osteomalacia in adults, rickets in children), tooth decay, periodontal disease, depression and possibly hypertension. Those at risk for calcium deficiency include: malnourished, malabsorption and bone loss disorders. Conditions which are known to decrease calcium uptake or distribution are: decreased gastric acidity, vitamin D deficiency, high fat diets, high oxalate intake from rhubarb, spinach, chard and beet greens, high phytic acid intake from whole grains, high fiber intake, immobilization, faster gastrointestinal motility, psychological stress, thiazide diuretic therapy, aluminum compounds (aluminum-containing antacids, drugs, some parenteral feeding solutions).

View our webinar on Clinical Implications of vitamin D and calcium deficiencies, as well as download a copy of this case study highlighting 52 year old female with muscle aches all include a deficiency in calcium.

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Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, Vitamin D, Calcium, micronutrient test, micronutrient, vitamin deficiencies

Folate, how vital is it to YOU?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Jan 15, 2014 @ 09:32 AM

Folate also known as folic acid is needed to folate produce blood cells and other new tissue cells. 

Folate is a generic term for a group of pteridine compounds essential for one-carbon unit metabolism.  Folates are involved in the synthesis of DNA, RNA and tRNA necessary for cell growth.  Folates are required for metabolism of methionine, histidine, tryptophan, glycine, serine and formate.  Interactions with vitamin B6 and B12 also occur from common metabolic pathways.  Folate function is necessary to prevent accumulation of homocysteine.  Deficient folate status of pregnant females is also directly linked to incidence of birth defects, especially neural tube defects such as spina bifida. 

Deficiency symptoms:

Symptoms of folate deficiency include birth defects (neural tube defects, spina bifida), fatigue, anorexia, constipation, glossitis, headaches, insomnia, restless legs, paranoia, memory impairment, megaloblastic anemia (identical in appearance to vitamin B12 deficiency), hypersegmentation of neutrophils and with severe deficiency, intestinal lesions.  However, the neurological complications of vitamin B12 deficiency do not occur with folate deficiency. Thus, a regulatory limit on folate levels in dietary supplements of 400 mcg per unit is in effect, to prevent a potential missed diagnosis of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Those at risk for folate deficiency include: Vitamin B12 deficiency, malnourished, malabsorption, pregnant and lactating women, increased rate of cellular division (burns, trauma, malignancies, hemolytic anemias), alcoholics, anti-convulsant therapy (phenytoin, barbiturates, primidone), folate antagonist therapy (nethotrezate, 5-fluoroacul, pyrimethamine), tuberculosis therapy (isoniazid plus cycloserine), oral contraceptive users, sulfasalzine therapy, elderly, infants and inherited folate disorders.

Repletion Information:

Dietary sources richest in folate (per serving) include:

  • Nutritional Supplements
  • vitamin-fortified cereals
  • wheat germ
  • nuts
  • legumes
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Seeds
  • Liver

Download the nutrient correlation chart on Autism, and anxiety, as well as a case study highlighting 50 year old female with chronic fatigue all include a deficiency in folate.

To find out your micronutrients levels, click here!

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, folate, Folic Acid, Vitamins, micronutrient

Are YOU Biotin deficient?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Dec 04, 2013 @ 03:34 PM

Biotin is a coenzyme and is also known as vitamin H. As a supplement, biotin deficiency symptomsbiotin is sometimes used for diabetes, brittle nails, and other conditions. Biotin is a coenzyme and a B vitamin and is also known as vitamin H. As a supplement, biotin is sometimes used for diabetes, brittle nails, and other conditions.

Function:

Biotin is required for proper metabolism of fats and carbohydrates. 
Biotin-dependent enzymes catalyze the addition of carboxyl groups (COO-) from bicarbonate, for use in fatty acid biosynthesis, gluconeogenesis, lipogenesis, propionate metabolism and leucine catabolism.

Deficiency Symptoms:

Symptoms of biotin deficiency include erythematous exfoliative dermatitis, thinning hair, fatigue, irritability, mild depression, somnolence, muscle pains, anorexia, nausea, mild anemia. Dietary symptoms include fatigue, dry skin, body hair loss, nausea, loss of appetite and mild depression. People at risk for biotin deficiency are those who consume excessive amounts of raw egg whites, inherited disorders of biotin metabolism, extended total parenteral nutrition (biotin-free), loss of enteric gut micro flora from antibiotic therapy or altered gut motility, pregnant and lactating women, anti epileptic drug therapy, alcoholics, trauma (burns and surgery), elderly, malabsorption (especially achlorhydria).

Want to check your micronutrient levels click here to be contacted by one of our SpectraCell representatives.

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, B Vitamins, Vitamins, biotin

Vitamin C, the "superstar" of the vitamin group

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Oct 09, 2013 @ 02:41 PM

Vitamin C is an antioxidant, along with vitamin E, blahbeta-carotene, and many other plant-based nutrients. Vitamin C is often considered one of the “superstars” of the nutrient world. Vitamin C has a prominent role in over 300 functions in the body.  Dozens of studies show that Vitamin C has multifaceted benefits ranging from protection against heart disease and cancer to other more esoteric conditions such as fatigue, wound healing and general immunity.  It is also a potent antioxidant that helps protect against premature aging.


Deficiency symptoms of Vitamin C


Signs of vitamin deficiency include dry and splitting hair; gingivitis more commonly known as inflammation of the gums and bleeding gums; rough, dry, scaly skin; decreased wound-healing rate, easy bruising; nosebleeds; and a decreased ability to ward off infection.

Conditions Associated with low levels of vitamin C

Low levels of vitamin C have been associated with a number of serious conditions, including high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, stroke, some cancers, and atherosclerosis, the build-up plaque in blood vessels that can lead to heart attack and stroke.

Download SpectraCell's Nutrition Correlation chart referencing the correlation between vitamin C with hypertension as well as watch our webinar "Nutrition and its relation to Cardiovascular Risk Factors"

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, Vitamin C, High Blood Pressure, Wound Healing, Nutrient, Immunity

Vitamin B6 the common deficiency you may NOT know about!

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Fri, Sep 06, 2013 @ 12:52 PM

Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin and is vitamin b6part of the vitamin B complex group. The vitamin is needed to metabolize proteins and is important for a healthy immune system, nerves, bones and arteries.  Vitamin B6 is a complex of three similar molecules: Pyridoxine, Pyridoxal and Pyridoxamine.  All are present in foods and converted into pyridoxal-5-phosphate, the most active coenzyme form.  

Vitamin B6's primary functions are in protein metabolism, transferring amino acid and sulfur groups.  Roles in synthesis of heme (for hemoglobin), niacin, neurotransmitters, connective tissues, eicosanoids and sphingolipids in nerve sheaths are also essential.  Vitamin B6 also participates in the utilization of glycogen and immune function.

Deficiency Symptoms

Early vitamin B6 deficiency symptoms are primarily peripheral neuropathy, weakness, irritability, depression, insomnia and anxiety.  More severe deficiency leads to dermatitis, nausea, vomiting and convulsions. Carpal tunnel syndrome, premenstrual tension syndrome and atherosclerosis may also be related to vitamin B6 deficiency.  Sideroblastic anemia is indicative of vitamin B6 deficiency.  Homocysteine levels in serum may be elevated by a vitamin B6 deficiency.

Prescription that may deplete your nutritional status

  • Anti-inflammatories (steroids - Prednisone, Medrol, Aristocort & Decadron)
  • Diuretics (Thiazide Diuretics - HCTZ, Enduron, Diuril, Lozol, Zaroxolyn, Hygroton and others)
  • Cardiovascular Drugs (antihypertensives - catapres, aldomet)
  • Antibiotics (Tetracyclines)
  • Female Hormones (Estrogen/Hormone replacement, Oral contraceptives)

Repletion Information

Dietary sources rich in vitamin B6 include:

  • Nutritional supplements
  • Potatoes
  • Wheat Germ
  • Legumes
  • Nutritional Yeasts
  • Meats
  • Bananas
  • Fortified Cereal Products
Download SpectraCell's Nutrition Correlation chart referencing the correlation between vitamin B6 with Estrogen, Testosterone and ADHD as well as watch our webinar on Nutritional Considerations of Skin disorders.  

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrient testing, supplements, Vitamins, vitamin b

Vitamin A - How does it AFFECT YOU!

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Aug 01, 2013 @ 11:47 AM

Vitamin A is a group of nutritionally unsaturated hydrocarbons. Different forms of the vitamin vitamin A include retinol, retinoic acid, and carotenoids. Retinol is the most biologically active form of vitamin A and is synthesized by pro-vitamin A(beta-carotene). Vitamin A regulates cell proliferation, differentiation, immune function and apoptosis (cell death).  This vitamin plays a vital role in night or low-light vision and color vision among many other common functions.

Symptoms of vitamin A deficiency - Impaired immune function; eye or skin problems; compromised cell growth and development; fat malabsorption; night blindness; zinc deficiency; insomnia.

Common conditions associated with vitamin A deficiency - Hormone balance, Immunidex, Insomnia, night blindness.

CASE STUDY highlights a common problem with a vitamin A deficiency. A 45 year old female with multiple conditions such as hypertension, insomnia and GERD, click here.

View our webinars Nutritional Considerations of Hormone Balance and Nutritional Considerations of Skin disorders, which references vitamin A deficiency among others in these conditions. 

To check your micronutrient levels or to get started click here

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrients, micronutrient testing, Cancer, cancer cells, autoimmune diseases, zinc, Vitamin A, Migraines, Heart Disease, pregnancy, Multivitamins, immune system, E-zinc, breast cancer, Fertility, PMS, deficiencies, Case Study, Headache, Dr. Ron Grabowski, deficiency, Depression, degenerative illness, micronutrient test, Cancer Prevention, Hypothyroidism, Hormones, Menopause, HSVI, GERD, mitral valve prolapse, infertility, Immunidex, eczema and nutrition, Women's Health

SpectraCell Case Study - Female with Multiple Conditions!

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Jul 18, 2013 @ 03:03 PM

In 2006, a 45 year old female with complaints of multiple conditions including hypertension,case study MNT dyslipidemias, insomnia, athralgias, mitral valve prolapse, GERD and HSVI, tried SpectraCell testing only to reveal  deficiencies in key vitamins and minerals. 

This patient experienced malaise fatigue (x3-4years), joint pain, thin nails, sleep onset insomnia and hot flashes.  She had been taking Micardis (40/12.5), Ibuprofen (800mg as needed), vitamin D3 (1,000IU), Lasix (20mg as needed) and Valtrex (500mg daily) for prophylaxis.  Spectracell's micronutrient test revealed deficiencies in vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, zinc, magnesium, CoQ10 and antioxidants.  Based upon her deficiencies, she was administered the following treatment protocol:

  • 1,000 IU/day of vitamin D3
  • 5,000 IU/day of vitamin A
  • 25 mg/day of zinc
  • 300-400 mg/day of magnesium
  • 100 mg/day of CoQ10
  • 400 IU d-alpha tocopherol & antioxidants of vitamin E
  • 100 MCG/day of selenium 

Clinical Outcome:
Fatigue/tiredness improved significantly - she can now do exercises at the gym.  Her nails became stronger and don't break easily.  Joint pains have decreased significantly.  Blood pressure is more controlled.  Insomnia improved and the hot flashes minimized.  Increased focus and concentration at work.  Improved memory compared to before.  Overall quality of life improved significantly.  She can now pursue her hobby (gardening) with enthusiasm and interest.

Follow up Nutritional Testing:
The previous deficiencies were corrected.  New deficiencies were far fewer than before - vitamin B12, selenium and antioxidants.

Conclusion:
She stated she had tried treatments in the past before SpectraCell's micronutrient testing, but nothing had helped her.  Following the testing and then replenishing with supplements in the appropriate dosages, has brought significant positive changes in her day to day functions.

SpectraCell Laboratories is combining the Micronutrient Testing and MTHFR Genotyping as a special package promotion.  To find out more CLICK HERE!




Topics: micronutrients, micronutrient testing, Coenzyme Q10, Autoimmunity, autoimmune diseases, zinc, Vitamin D, Magnesium, Vitamin A, Selenium, B Vitamins, Antioxidants, Minerals, hypertension, Aging, athralgias, dyslipidemias, HSVI, GERD, insomnia, mitral valve prolapse