An Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure!

Archive for April, 2012

Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) Beneficial For Crohn’s Disease


Crusts around the ankles and feet in a patient...

Crusts around the ankles and feet in a patient with Crohn's disease and bowel-associated dermatosis-arthritis syndrome (BADAS). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Nutritional Immunology and Molecular Medicine Laboratory (NIMML) research team at Virginia Tech has discovered important new information on the efficacy of Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) in treating Crohn’s disease, a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).CLA is a naturally occurring acid found in meat and dairy products known for its anti-cancer and immune modulatory properties.

In collaboration with the Division of Gastro-enterology and Hepathology at University of North Carolina School of Medicine and the Wake Forest Medical Center, researchers found that Crohn’s patients who took supple-mentary CLA showed noticeable improvement.   “In our recent open label study of CLA as a supplement in study subjects with mild to moderate CD there was a marked improvement in disease activity and quality of life in 50% of the subjects. CLA was well tolerated by all of the study subjects. These findings are very encouraging and will need to be verified in a randomized controlled trial,” said a research team specializing in Gastroenterology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The two main manifestations of IBD Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis afflict over 1.4 million people in the United States. Symptoms include abdominal cramping,fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, skin and mouth ulcers, and diarrhea or constipation. In addition, the risk of developing colorectal cancer increases by about one percent yearly in IBD patients.

Currently, there is no cure for Crohn’s disease and the exact causes of it aren’t fully understood.

CLA supplementation provides those with mild to moderate IBD an effective nutrient-based treatment without the unwanted side effects of many synthetic drugs. “Furthermore, we have demonstrated that probiotic bacteria can produce CLA locally and suppress colitis. Therefore, CLA can be administered directly in capsules or indirectly through CLA-producing probiotic bacteria,” said the researchers.

NIMML strives to develop safer and more effective therapies for human chronic inflam-matory diseases from Nature’s own medicine cabinet. To achieve this, NIMML uses advanced computational modeling in addition to mechanistic and clinical experimentation.

“The validation of the anti-inflammatory actions of CLA in the gut is in line with our goal because CLA is a natural fatty acid found in grass-fed animal products: milk, butter, cheese, and meat with fat intact. Other good sources of CLA include Evening Primrose Oil, Safflower Oil and Flaxseed Oil.

CLA is a naturally-derived anti-inflammatory compound with  therapeutic and prophylactic potential.

These findings, reported in the most recent edition of Clinical Nutrition, were awarded the American College of Gastroenterology Presidential Poster of distinction for human clinical trials.

Story Source: Virginia Tech, Tech (2012, March 19) “Novel therapy discovered for Crohn’s disease”

This article is for informational and educational purposes only;  It is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor or healthcare professional.

Magnesium Lowers Blood Pressure, New Study Reports



BLOOD PRESSURE CHECK (Photo credit: Morning Calm News)

Researchers from the University of Hertfordshire have found that magnesium supplements may provide clinically significant reductions in blood pressure.

In a report published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the researchers also discovered that the measure of the effect increased in proportion with increased dosage.

Cardiovascular diseases cause almost 50% of deaths in Europe and contribute heavily to escalating healthcare costs. Elevated blood pressure or hypertension is a major risk factor for mortality from cardiovascular and renal disease.

Causes of hypertension include smoking, an inactive, sedentary lifestyle, a diet high in sodium and an inadequate intake of specific nutrients, especially minerals such as potassium, calcium and magnesium.


“Until now, there’s been inconclusive evidence regarding the effect of magnesium supplements on blood pressure,” explained the researchers from the University of Hertfordshire. “So we conducted a meta-analysis by analysing data from twenty-two trials involving 1,173 people to assess the effect of magnesium on blood pressure.”


In the trials, the magnesium supplementation doses ranged from 120 to 973 mg with between 3 to 24 weeks of follow-up.  Although not all individual trials showed significance in blood pressure reduction, by combining the trials, the overall data indicated that daily magnesium supplementation reduced both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The best results were observed at the higher dosages.


“The clinical significance in the reductions found from this meta-analysis may be important in helping to prevent hypertension and associated risks around cardiovascular disease,”the researchers reported … “And is worthy of future trials using solid methodology.”


Story Source: University of Hertfordshire

Journal Reference: “Effect of magnesium supplementation on blood pressure: a meta-analysis.” European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2012;



This article is for informational and educational purposes only;  It is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor, physician or healthcare professional.




Your Internal Body Clock Influences Your Health

By analyzing the hundreds of metabolicsubstances naturally present in the

Diagram illustrating the influence of dark-lig...

Diagram illustrating the influence of dark-light rythms on circadian rythms and related physiology and behavior. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

liver,researchers at the University of California – Irvine Center for Epigenetics & Metabolism have discovered that circadian rhythms (our own body clock) greatly control the production of such key building blocks as amino acids, carbohydrates and lipids.

They identified more than 600 liver-originated metabolites, which are the chemical substances created by metabolism that sustain and promote cell health and growth. Approximately 60 percent of these metabolites were found to be dependent on the endogenous circadian clock while only about 15 percent of the body’s genes are regulated by it.

Circadian rhythms throughout 24 hours govern fundamental biological and physiological processes in almost all organisms.

They anticipate environmental changes and adapt certain bodily functions to the appropriate time of day. Disruption of these cycles can significantly affect human health.

Center for Epigenetics & Metabolism director Paolo Sassone-Corsi, recognized as one of the world’s preeminent researchers on circadian rhythms, led the new study…  The liver metabolites reveal how the body clock through the main circadian gene, orchestrates the interplay between metabolites and signaling proteins. The process is similar to the way a conductor leads a symphony-orchestra to perfectly coordinate the instruments, brass and strings.

External cues such as day-night lighting patterns and nutrition influence the circadian system and metabolites. Their relationship to signaling proteins in cells seem to be acutely tied to circadian disruptions. This may help explain some of the primary physiological factors underlying obesity, high cholesterol and metabolic-based diseases like diabetes.

The results of the study appear in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“By identifying the relationship between metabolites and the body clock, we have taken a first step toward a better understanding of how nutrients interact with our metabolism, giving researchers a new opportunity to spot the optimal times for us to get the fullest benefits from the foods we eat and the medications we take,” explained the researchers conducting the study.

Metabolic data about other tissues and conditions will be invaluable to further our understanding of the interplay between metabolism and circadian rhythms in healthy and diseased states.” the researchers added   Story Source: University of California – Irvine;

National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation    Journal Reference: Coordination of the transcriptome and metabolome by the circadian clock. PNAS, March 19, 2012 726109

University of California – Irvine (2012, March 19). Circadian rhythms have profound influence on metabolic output

This article is for informational and educational purposes only;  It is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor or healthcare professional.

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