SpectraCell Blog

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

Do the Prescriptions YOU take deplete your nutritional status?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Jul 24, 2013 @ 03:34 PM

When a person takes prescription drugs or over the counter medication chances are that they can prescription depletions Page 1 resized 600 be affecting their nutrient levels. Below are some of the possible deficiencies that are correlated with each corresponding drug.

Antacids/Ulcer medications

  • vitamin B12 - Anemia, depression, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • Folic Acid - Birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, heart disease, cancer risk

  • vitamin D - osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss

  • Calcium - Osteoporosis, heart and blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • Iron - Anemia, weakness, fatigue, hair loss, brittle nails

  • Zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Antibiotics

  • B vitamins, Vitamin K - short term depletion affects are minimal, but failure to re-inoculate the GI tract with beneficial bacteria (probiotics) often results in dysbiosis which causes gas, bloating, decreases digestion & absorption of nutrients, and also may lead to a variety of other health problems.

  • Calcium - osteoporosis, heart & blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • Iron - slow wound healing, fatigue, anemia

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbance, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Cholesterol drugs

  • Coenzyme Q10 - Various cardiovascular problems, weak immune system, low energy


Female Hormones

  • Vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbance, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • Folic acid - birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, cardiovascular disease

  • vitamin B1 - depression, irritability, memory loss, muscle weakness, edema

  • vitamin B2 - problems with skin, eyes, mucous membranes and nerves

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbances, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • vitamin B12 - anemia, depression, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • vitamin C - lowered immune system, easy bruising, poor wound healing

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • selenium - lower immunity, reduced antioxidant protection'

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Anti-Inflammatories

  • calcium - osteoporosis, heart and blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • vitamin D - osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction

  • vitamin C - lowered immunity, easy bruising, poor wound healing

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbances,increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • vitamin B12 - anemia, depressioon, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • Folic Acid - birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, cardiovascular disease

  • Selenium - lower immunity, reduced antioxidant protection

  • chromium - elevated blood sugar, cholesterol & triglycerides, diabetes risk

  • vitamin B5 - fatigue, listlessness, and possible problems with skin, liver and nerves

For a complete list of drugs and their correlating deficiencies click here

If you would like to check your nutrient levels click here

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrients, Coenzyme Q10, Antidepressants, Cancer, autoimmune diseases, zinc, Vitamin D, Carnitine, Magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin B6, B Vitamins, Folic Acid, Antioxidants, Fibromyalgia, Cholesterol, Cardiovascular Health, Heart Disease, Vitamin K, Vitamin B12, Chronic Disease, diabetes, immune system, E-zinc, Vitamins, Calcium, Fertility, PMS, deficiencies, chronic fatigue and nutrition, health, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Depression, Diet, Digestion, Stress, Vitamin B1, micronutrient test, Inflammation, Vitamin B5, High Blood Pressure, Vitamin B2, Iron, Nutritional Deficiency, Cancer Prevention, Heart Health, Gastrointestinal Tract, Hypothyroidism, Allergies, Wound Healing, Vitamin B3, Antihistamines, cardiovascular disease, Nutrient, hypertension, Women's Health

SpectraCell's Clinical Updates - Volume 6, Issue 7

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Aug 09, 2012 @ 10:37 AM

Omega 3sCLINICAL UPDATE - Omega 3s Can Replace Ibuprofen for PMS Pain
In this trial, a group of women were given either placebo or omega3 fatty acids for three months, followed by three months of the opposite regimen.  Symptoms of PMS, especially pain, were monitored. After 3 months of treatment, women who took the omega 3 capsules every day decreased their ibuprofen usage by 19% (first group) and by 53% (second group). (International Journal of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, April 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT  Effect of omega-3 fatty acids on intensity of primary dysmenorrhea

AsthmaticsCLINICAL UPDATE - Carnitine Supplements Improve Lung Function in Asthmatics
A recent placebo-controlled study compared 50 children with asthma to 50 healthy controls and found that not only were levels of the amino acid carnitine lower in those with asthma, but supplementation with 350mg of L-carnitine daily for six months significantly improved lung function is those with asthma.   Researchers noted that carnitine’s primary role in transporting fatty acids into the mitochondria may explain its benefit to those with asthma – carnitine also transports fatty acids to lung membrane surfaces ensuring they are lubricated, explaining a mechanism by which carnitine improves pulmonary function. (Journal of Allergy, 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT L-carnitine improves the asthma control in children with moderate persistent asthma.
LINK to FREE FULL TEXT
LINK to FLYER on NUTRIENT INTERACTIONS OF ASTHMA

DiabetesCLINICAL UPDATE - Vitamin C Benefits Diabetics on Metformin
Seventy patients with type II diabetes were given either placebo or 500mg vitamin C twice a day.  All patients were taking metformin as well. After twelve weeks, measures of blood sugar control (fasting blood sugar, post-meal blood glucose and HbA1c levels) were all improved in the vitamin C group only. (Advances in Pharmalogical Sciences, 2011)

LINK to ABSTRACT Supplementation of vitamin C reduces blood glucose and improves glycosylated hemoglobin in type 2 diabetes mellitus: a randomized, double-blind study.
LINK to FREE FULL TEXT

Brain InjuryCLINICAL UPDATE - Zinc: A New Role for Traumatic Brain Injury
In this review, the protective role of zinc against traumatic brain injury is elucidated.  The authors stat that human clinical data “suggest that zinc may increase resilience” and can be used “to improve cognitive and behavioural deficits associated with brain injury.” (Nutrition Reviews, July 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT Improving treatments and outcomes: an emerging role for zinc in traumatic brain injury.

FertilityCLINICAL UPDATE - Vitamin E Increases Sperm Count
106 infertile men were included in this trial  – 64 were infertile due to low sperm count and 42 were infertile due to poor sperm motility.  They were divided into two groups – both groups received pharmaceutical therapy for fertility but only one group was simultaneously treated with a natural form of vitamin E.  Sperm count and motility improved more dramatically in the vitamin E treated group.  In fact, only five natural pregnancies occurred in the non-vitamin E group, while 15 natural pregnancies occurred in the vitamin E treated group.  In an unrelated trial, vitamin E was co-administered with fertility drugs to a group of women and compared to fertility drug treated women without vitamin E.  Although those treated with vitamin E did not have statistically higher rates of pregnancy, the women given vitamin E did show significantly improved endometrial thickness, which would facilitate future pregnancy. (Natural Journal of Andrology, May 2012; Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics, April 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT Efficacy of natural vitamin E on oligospermia and athenospermia: a prospective multi-centered randomized controlled study of 106 cases.
LINK to ABSTRACT Vitamin E effect on controlled ovarian stimulation of unexplained infertile women.

Muscle MassCLINICAL UPDATE - A New Role for Omega 3s in Building Muscle Mass
A group of women (average age = 64 years old) were put on a strength training program for 90 days.  Some of the women were given fish oil supplements while others received no supplement. Measures of muscle strength were taken and those taking fish oil showed significantly higher muscle development.  Researchers hypothesized that this increase in muscle development during strength training is due to the role omega 3 fatty acids play in plasma membranes and muscle cell function. (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, February 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT Fish-oil supplementation enhances the effects of strength training in elderly women.

SerineCLINICAL UPDATE - High Dose Serine Improves Neuropathy: Case Report
One of the most common inherited neurological disorders, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease affects approximately 1 in every 2500 people and is characterized by muscle wasting and peripheral neuropathy. In this case report, a male patient with polyneuropathy had a serine synthesis defect.  Deficiency in the amino acid serine often manifests neurologically and in this case, high-dose supplementation of serine improved his neuropathy symptoms. (Archives of Neurology, March 2012)

LINK to ABSTRACT A Serine Synthesis Defect Presenting With a Charcot-Marie-Tooth-Like Polyneuropathy.

Clicke HERE to browse our archived library of clinical updates

Topics: serine, zinc, Carnitine, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, diabetes, Fertility, PMS, Omega 3s, Asthma

Why Do We Get PMS?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 @ 11:20 AM

The Fatigue SolutionExcerpt from Eva Cwynar, M.D.'s new book, "The Fatigue Solution"

We've come a long way since the time when doctors used to debate the reality of PMS, but the short answer is that there are many reasons why PMS occurs. There are several different theories:

  • Decline in progesterone levels. PMS symptoms occur during the luteal phase of a woman's cycle, which is when progesterone begins to rise (right after ovulation) and then starts to plummet about 7 days later. When you are about to get your period, your progesterone levels rapidly drop. That's what causes problems. Hormone levels normally fluctuate. If progesterone levels were measured on a scale of 1 to 10, for example, they could drop from a level of 10 to a 9.9 to a 9.8 to a 9.7 and your body would be able to adjust to the changing levels with almost no difficulty. When you're about to get your period, however, levels drop dramatically from a 10 to a 5 and perhaps even to a 1. It's that rapid change that stimulates your symptoms. And some women drop faster and lower than others, which is why their symptoms may be worse than other women's.
  • Decrease in neurotransmitters serotonin and GABA activity. Serotonin is responsible for our positive emotional well-being, while GABA helps keep us calm. Reduced levels of estrogen during the luteal phase may ben linked to a drop in serotonin. Lower serotonin levels are associated with irritability, anger, and carbohydrate cravings, all of which are symptoms of PMS. It also appears that GABA receptors are less sensitive than normal, which would explain the increased sense of anxiety.
  • Changes in levels of norepinephrine and epinephrine. These neurotransmitters are involved in the body's stress response. Estrogen may affect the levels of these neurotransmitters, which can influence blood pressure and heart rate as well as mood.

Other possible causes include:

  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
  • Mercury toxicity
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Candida overgrowth (a fungus)
  • Food allergies/sensitivities
  • Vitamin B6, Calcium or Magnesium deficiencies
  • Inadequate protein intake - liver enzymes that convert female hormones depend on protein
  • Poor liver function - the liver metabolizes one form of estrogen into other forms of estrogen
  • Poor adrenal gland function

No one knows for sure what causes PMS. Some people attribute particular symptoms to increased levels of estrogen and/or progesterone; other people say the same symptom is due to decreased levels of these hormones. Studies routinely produce conflicting results. I believe that the key to eliminating or greatly reducing PMS symptoms lies in the balance between these two hormones during the menstrual cycle.

Learn more about this topic below:

Also, to learn more about Dr. Eva Cwynar, visit her website: www.dreva.com

 

Topics: Magnesium, Vitamin B6, Fatigue, Calcium, PMS, Hormones, Dr. Eva Cwynar

Nutritional Considerations of Women's Health

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Mon, Feb 13, 2012 @ 11:32 AM

Are you ready to achieve optimal health and reduce your risk of chronic diseases?

Your Health

Osteoporosis and WomenOSTEOPOROSIS
Good bone health is not as simple as getting enough calcium. In order to absorb calcium and reduce bone loss, proper vitamin D, K and C levels are crucial. Additionally, several vitamins and minerals are necessary for the prevention of osteoporosis as well as the painful bone disease, osteomalacia. Vitamin K is a major factor in building bone proteins while the amino acid carnitine can improve bone mineral density and zinc deficiency can negatively affect bone integrity.

PMS
Several symptoms of PMS are alleviated by specific nutrients and worsened by deficiencies. Since ovarian hormones influence calcium, magnesium and vitamin D metabolism, the evaluation of how each nutrient is functioning in a woman’s body reveals crucial information. In clinical trials, zinc has reduced and sometimes eliminated menstrual cramping; calcium and vitamin D can mitigate premenstrual headaches; and magnesium plus vitamin B6 supplementation can reduce the anxiety often felt in women suffering from PMS.

Women and HormonesHORMONES & HRT
The delicate balance of hormones is profoundly affected by nutritional deficiencies. Micronutrients can actually function as a hormone (vitamin D for example) or, in most cases, hormones are regulated by nutrients. Research shows that synthetic Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) can negatively affect mineral levels of calcium, copper, chromium, magnesium, selenium and zinc and certain vitamins, while reducing important antioxidants.

MENOPAUSE
Menopausal women are at a higher risk for micronutrient deficiencies. This is due largely to the fact that as we age, our bodies are less efficient at absorption, but also due to the oxidative stress that accompanies normal aging. As a woman enters menopause, her risk for cardiovascular disease also increases, partly because certain vitamins that protect against heart disease become deficient. For example, folic acid and B vitamin supplementation in women can help blood vessels remain pliable and clear while improving a woman’s lipid profile. In some women, high estrogen levels are associated with low magnesium levels, which consequently affect blood pressure and several negative menopausal symptoms.

BREAST CANCERWomen and Breast Cancer
Several key nutrients are critical for maintaining healthy breast tissue. Low antioxidant status is linked to higher rates of breast and other cancers. In fact, antioxidants such as coenzyme Q10, cysteine and vitamin A have been shown to mitigate DNA damage in cancerous tissue and inhibit hormonal toxicities that can initiate cancerous cells. Other studies have shown that adequate vitamin D and calcium levels can lower risk by more than 70%.

PREGNANCY
The demands for specific nutrients during pregnancy and lactation are particularly taxing on a mother, often draining her nutritional reserves. Since nutritional deficiencies can be passed from a mother to her baby, accurate and targeted diagnostic testing is important before, during and post-partum. Targeted supplementation may also reduce pregnancy complications: coenzyme Q10 and selenium reduce risk of pre-eclampsia, vitamin D can decrease bacterial infections, vitamin A and B2 can alleviate pregnancy anemia, trace elements can reduce pregnancy induced hypertension, and folic acid, biotin and B vitamins may help in the reduction of birth defects.

Reproductive HealthREPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
Overwhelming evidence suggests that infertility issues stem from low antioxidant status. Deficiencies in vitamins C and E, zinc, copper, magnesium, folate as well as the powerful antioxidant cysteine have been linked to infertility. In many cases, targeted repletion is very beneficial with fertility and related issues like endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome.

SpectraCell’s micronutrient testing assesses your vitamin, mineral and antioxidant deficiencies on the cellular level. This unique testing provides you with individualized results to determine what nutrients your body needs to reduce your risk of chronic diseases and live a healthier life.

Contact us at spec1@spectracell.com to learn more...

Topics: pregnancy, breast cancer, PMS, Hormones, Osteoporosis, HRT, Menopause, Reproductive Health, Women's Health