For The Love Of Coffee…

coffee pressCaffeine — it’s the world’s most popular drug. People drink it with alcohol to ramp up the effect. They drink it after alcohol to sober up. They take it to get rid of headaches, cure cancer, and prevent Parkinson’s. Then again, most are looking to put warning labels on any product that contains added caffeine. So what gives — is caffeine saint or sinner, miracle drug or a self induced nightmare?

The devil, as usual when it comes to natural substances, lies in the details. And that’s what we’re going to explore in this article, the truth behind caffeine.

As Previously stated, Caffeine is the #1 used (or abused) DRUG in the world and is part of everyone’s daily life-style. It has gone unnoticed as a potentially harmful substance to most people’s health – especially if you’re over the age of 35 and you’re worried about heart disease, joint pain, anxiety, depression, and/or diabetes. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It’s consumed by up to 90% of people in the world in one form or another, but mostly in beverages. It is a naturally occurring substance found in plants like cocoa beans, tea leaves, and kola nuts.

Daily usage, let alone multiple cups, as well as higher dosed caffeinated products such as Espresso’s, Energy Drinks, and Weight Loss + Energy pills – have NUMEROUS long-term negative effects because of caffeine build up.

Below are the Top 10 Caffeine Related Problems. Please read them carefully and see what improvements you could make in your own lifestyle & future health picture.

  1. Cardiovascular Problems(heart disease, strokes and blood pressure) Caffeine increases your heart rate, elevates your blood pressure, and can contribute to the development of heart disease. This means an increase chance of heart attacks and strokes. Both decaf and regular coffee increase your cholesterol and homocysteine, the biochemical indicators that is linked to increased risk for heart attacks. Caffeine is also linked to coronary vasospasms, the cause for 20% of all fatal heart attacks, which kill otherwise perfectly healthy people.
  2. Stress(physical, emotional and a rise in stress hormones such as cortisol) Caffeine stimulates and increases the excretion of stress hormones, such as Cortisol and other negative adrenal hormones. This produces increased levels of anxiety, irritability, muscular tension and pain, indigestion, insomnia, and decreased immune function (leading to sickness). Increased levels of stress from caffeine can keep you from being able to make healthy responses to the normal daily stress everyone is subjected to in their lives. Hence, you’re NOT able to deal with stress as well.
  3. Emotional Disturbances(anxiety, panic attacks, and irritability) Anxiety and irritability are primary mood disturbances associated with caffeine consumption, but equally important is depression and attention disorders. Depression may occur as part of the let down (withdrawals) after the stimulant effects of caffeine wears off. This tends to happen through out the day due to caffeine’s short half life. Hence, why you drink multiple cups of coffee or caffeinated beverages through out the day. Your body “needs” the caffeine boost in order to survive and feel “normal”. Additionally, the depression may also appear during the recovery period after quitting caffeine while the brain’s chemistry is readjusted (this usually takes 3-10 days before your body “normalizes” and feels “human” again). Caffeine, rather than increasing mental activity actually decreases blood flow to the brain by as much as 30% and negatively effects memory and mental performance. Just like any drug, caffeine has negative withdrawals when you attempt to get off or even reduce your consumption. The above mentioned emotional disturbances, coupled with physical weakness and fatigue – adding to it horrible headaches – is one reason many people never stay off caffeine. It’s just too difficult to quit and because it’s readily available and acceptable for daily use, no one tries to quit.
  4. Blood Sugar & Insulin Problems(hypoglycemia, high insulin, etc.) Diabetics and people who tend to have low-blood sugar (hypoglycemia) should avoid caffeine because it stimulates a temporary surge in blood sugar, which is then followed by an overproduction of insulin that causes a blood sugar crash within hours. This low blood sugar makes you feel tired, fatigued and crave carbohydrates and sugary type of foods. If you’re trying to loose weight, this rollercoaster will actually cause weight gain, since insulin’s message to the body is to store excess sugar and food as body fat (around the legs, stomach, etc.). The other problem is if you’re pre-diabetic, diabetic and/or have a family history of it – caffeine makes things MUCH worse and you have to adjust your medication accordingly – on a day to day basis due to all the fluctuations and “rollercoaster” problems with your blood sugar because of the caffeine. Additionally, almost all caffeinated beverages contain calories and sugars – this again adds to the problem and makes many people gain fat (yes, even diet “no calorie” sodas have this effect!)
  5. Gastrointestinal Problems(stomach, heart burn, acid reflux, indigestion) Many people experience a burning sensation in their stomach after drinking coffee because coffee increases the secretion of hydrochloric acid leading to an increased risk for ulcers. Granted, it’s mild, goes unnoticed and people simply get use to this “mild discomfort” over the years and think it’s normal. Coffee, including decaf, reduces the pressure on the valve between the esophagus and the stomach, so that the highly acidic contents of the stomach pass up to the esophagus leading to heartburn and gastroesophageal reflux disease. With America’s high consumption of coffee, its no wonder the best selling over-the-counter drugs are the so-called antacids.
  6. Nutritional Deficiencies(vitamins, minerals, etc.) Caffeine inhibits the absorption of some nutrients and causes the urinary excretion of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron and trace minerals, all essential elements necessary for good health – especially your bones. This is one major reason for people having osteoporosis, joint problems and getting shorter as we age – less calcium absorption!
  7. Male Health Problems(urinary, prostate, BPH) Even though caffeine acts as a diuretic, it causes problems and prostate growth (PBH). Hence, if you are getting up to pee a few times a night, cutting out the caffeine will definitely help your prostate and you’ll sleep better too!
  8. Female Problems(PMS, cysts, osteoporosis, etc.) Fibrocystic breast disease, PMS, osteoporosis, infertility problems, miscarriage, low birth weight infants, and menopausal problems such as hot flashes are all exacerbated by caffeine consumption. Women on birth control pills are particularly at risk because they have a decreased ability to detoxify caffeine. Additionally, caffeine has been shown to cause cysts in breast tissue. As discussed in #6 above, caffeine prevents the absorption of certain nutrients – two main ones being calcium and magnesium. BOTH of these minerals are extremely important for maintaining healthy bones and teeth, while preventing osteoporosis (especially in women and more so if you’re post menopausal).
  9. Adrenal Exhaustion(fatigue, muscle weakness, sleepy) Caffeine consumption leads to eventual adrenal exhaustion, which can leave you vulnerable to a variety of health disorders related to inflammation, autoimmunity, colds and flues, and fatigue. Basically, your adrenal glands help create “adrenal”, in addition to a numerous other very important anti-aging hormones. When we are under stress (physical and/or emotional), our adrenal glands work over time to help us cope with life’s stresses. But, when you are using caffeine, your adrenal glands are already depleted. In fact, caffeine has REPLACED some of the adrenal’s functions. Similar to a car running on an empty gas tank. Hence, because of this adrenal exhaustion due to caffeine – your body is in a “weak” state and any additional pressures and stresses affect you much quicker. Irritability, muscle fatigue, anger, fat again are all related to adrenal exhaustion and the caffeine is making it worse!
  10. Accelerated Aging(dehydration, skin elasticity, wrinkles, loss of hormones) Many people over the age of 35 and definitely in their 40’s, find that they can no longer tolerate the same level of caffeine consumption, as they could in their twenties and early thirties. The production of DHEA, melatonin, and other hormones start to decline and caffeine accelerates that downhill drop & makes you age faster. As discussed earlier, caffeine is also a diuretic. It dehydrates the body of water and contributes to the aging of the skin and kidneys. It has been shown to inhibit DNA repair and slow the ability of the liver to detoxify foreign toxins. The kidneys and liver are very important organs needed for your longevity, detoxification, regeneration of cells, creation of hormones, metabolism of foods and nutrients and so many other vital duties.

Well, there you have it – 10 important reasons to AVOID caffeine and caffeinated products, pills and beverages. Yes, ONCE in a while, a small cup of organic coffee or tea is fine. But daily use, let alone multiple times a day is NOT good for your physical or emotional health – especially longterm usage.
If you tend to “abuse” caffeine and are a bit addicted (hence, daily usage, multiple times), my suggestion is to slowly reduce your dependency. For example, if you are having 4 cups of coffee daily, slowly lower it by HALF a cup each week until you are completely off.

Advertisements

Should You Take Vitamin K2 With Vitamin D???

Image

Vitamin D has been in the news for the past several years and has seen many studies reflecting it’s tremendous health benefits. News articles such as “Vitamin D Vital for the Heart”, “Sunscreens can Block Vitamin D”, Vitamin D Deficit in Pregnancy Tied to Caesarean Risk”, and “Lack of Vitamin D Can Double Your Risk of Stroke” are just a few of the headlines by some of the major news networks.

Vitamin D Deficiency

More than1 billion people worldwide do not consume adequate amounts of vitamin D and more than 50% of postmenopausal women taking meds for osteoporosis have suboptimal levels of vitamin D. Without adequate levels of Vitamin D, only 10 -15% of our dietary calcium can be absorbed. This is due to the function of the Vitamin D to facilitate the absorption of Calcium.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin/hormone and is obtained in three ways:

  1. Dietary Intake
  2. Supplementation
  3. Sunlight

 

Vitamin D is naturally present in very few foods, added to others, and available more readily as a dietary supplement. It is also produced endogenously, within the body, when ultraviolet rays from sunlight strike the skin and trigger vitamin D synthesis. Vitamin D obtained from sun exposure, food, and supplements is biologically inactive and must undergo two hydroxylations in the body for activation. The first occurs in the liver and converts vitamin D to 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. The second occurs primarily in the kidney and forms the physiologically active 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3.

Role of Vitamin D

  • Promotes the proper synthesis and functioning of important proteins essential for proper calcium utilization
  • Supports the maintenance of bones
  • Supports immune health
  • Helps maintain cardiovascular health
  • Helps maintain normal blood pressure

Why Vitamin K2

Vitamin K is also a fat-soluble vitamin, so it is stored in the body’s fat tissue and liver. It is best known for its role in helping blood clot (coagulate) properly (the “K” comes from its German name, Koagulationsvitamin). Vitamin K also plays an important role in bone health by binding calcium and other minerals to the bone.  Vitamin K is used to reduce the risk of bleeding in liver disease, malabsorption syndromes, or in association with long-term use of antibiotics. Most importantly it is needed for proper use of calcium in bones. Higher vitamin K levels correspond to greater bone density, while low levels of vitamin K have been found in those with osteoporosis. There is increasing evidence that vitamin K improves bone health and reduces risk of bone fractures, particularly in postmenopausal women who are at risk for osteoporosis. In addition, studies of other groups (such as male and female athletes) have also shown bone enhancing benefits from vitamin K supplements. Vitamin K may very well end up being as important for you as vitamin D, as research continues to illuminate the growing list of its benefits for your health. Vitamin K is probably where vitamin D was ten years ago, with respect to its appreciation as a vital nutrient that has far more advantages than originally thought.

Purpose of Vitamin D and K as Supplements

Most people are deficient in Vitamin D or at least insufficient as it relates to their diet and sun exposure. Keep in mind that Vitamin K is responsible for healthy tissues. In bone, it activates osteocalcin, a protein required to bind calcium to the mineral matrix, thus strengthening the skeleton. In circulation, Vitamin K2 participates in carboxylation of Matrix Gla Protein (MGP), the most potent inhibitor of arterial calcification known, lowering the risk of vascular damage. Therefore there is a compounding effect of these two vitamins working together.

What to Look for in a Good Supplement

Vitamin D3: 5,000IU

Vitamin K2: 45mcg

Benefits of Vitamin D with K2

  • Helps maintain bone health
  • Promotes normal bone mineral density
  • Promotes proper synthesis of proteins essential for proper calcium utilization
  • Helps maintain cardiovascular health
  • Promotes arteries
  • Promotes healthy  and elastic blood vessels
  • Helps maintain normal blood pressure
  • Promotes healthy  cells
  • Supports immune health

Who Would Benefit?

  • Bone health
  • Immune health
  • Cardiovascular health
  • Optimal nutrient absorption
  • Optimizing overall health

Where can you get a good quality Vit. D with K2 and who can you trust?

There are many different sources to purchase this from but the question I have always had …“who can you trust?” Well I have set out on a search over the past 25 years to find the best quality supplements to offer to my patients and I have discovered the form of supplements that absorb at the highest rate of all on the market which are known as Isotonic. These are the supplements that I trust and offer to my patients which  can be found at http://www.drbarry.nutrametrix.com

View my blog to learn more about why Isotonic Supplements have the highest rate of absorption.

 


Why Take Vitamin D with K2?

Vitamin D has been in the news for the past several years and has seen many studies reflecting it’s tremendous health benefits. News articles such as “Vitamin D Vital for the Heart”, “Sunscreens can Block Vitamin D”, Vitamin D Deficit in Pregnancy Tied to Caesarean Risk”, and “Lack of Vitamin D Can Double Your Risk of Stroke” are just a few of the headlines by some of the major news networks.

Vitamin D Deficiency

More than1 billion people worldwide do not consume adequate amounts of vitamin D and more than 50% of postmenopausal women taking meds for osteoporosis have suboptimal levels of vitamin D. Without adequate levels of Vitamin D, only 10 -15% of our dietary calcium can be absorbed. This is due to the function of the Vitamin D to facilitate the absorption of Calcium.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin/hormone and is obtained in three ways:

  1.  Sunlight
  2. Supplementation
  3. Dietary Intake

Vitamin D is naturally present in very few foods, added to others, and available more readily as a dietary supplement. It is also produced endogenously, within the body, when ultraviolet rays from sunlight strike the skin and trigger vitamin D synthesis. Vitamin D obtained from sun exposure, food, and supplements is biologically inactive and must undergo two hydroxylations in the body for activation. The first occurs in the liver and converts vitamin D to 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. The second occurs primarily in the kidney and forms the physiologically active 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3.

 

Role of Vitamin D

  • Promotes the proper synthesis and functioning of important proteins essential for proper calcium utilization
  • Supports the maintenance of bones
  • Supports immune health
  • Helps maintain cardiovascular health
  • Helps maintain normal blood pressure

Why Vitamin K2

Vitamin K is also a fat-soluble vitamin, so it is stored in the body’s fat tissue and liver. It is best known for its role in helping blood clot (coagulate) properly (the “K” comes from its German name, Koagulationsvitamin). Vitamin K also plays an important role in bone health by binding calcium and other minerals to the bone.  Vitamin K is used to reduce the risk of bleeding in liver disease, malabsorption syndromes, or in association with long-term use of antibiotics. Most importantly it is needed for proper use of calcium in bones. Higher vitamin K levels correspond to greater bone density, while low levels of vitamin K have been found in those with osteoporosis. There is increasing evidence that vitamin K improves bone health and reduces risk of bone fractures, particularly in postmenopausal women who are at risk for osteoporosis. In addition, studies of other groups (such as male and female athletes) have also shown bone enhancing benefits from vitamin K supplements. Vitamin K may very well end up being as important for you as vitamin D, as research continues to illuminate the growing list of its benefits for your health. Vitamin K is probably where vitamin D was ten years ago, with respect to its appreciation as a vital nutrient that has far more advantages than originally thought.

Purpose of Vitamin D and K as Supplements

Most people are deficient in Vitamin D or at least insufficient as it relates to their diet and sun exposure. Keep in mind that Vitamin K is responsible for healthy tissues. In bone, it activates osteocalcin, a protein required to bind calcium to the mineral matrix, thus strengthening the skeleton. In circulation, Vitamin K2 participates in carboxylation of Matrix Gla Protein (MGP), the most potent inhibitor of arterial calcification known, lowering the risk of vascular damage. Therefore there is a compounding effect of these two vitamins working together.

What to Look for in a Good Supplement

Vitamin D3: 5,000IU

Vitamin K2: 45mcg

Benefits of Vitamin D with K2

  • Helps maintain bone health
  • Promotes normal bone mineral density
  • Promotes proper synthesis of proteins essential for proper calcium utilization
  • Helps maintain cardiovascular health
  •  Promotes healthy arteries
  • Promotes elasticity of blood vessels
  • Helps maintain normal blood pressure
  • Promotes healthy cells
  • Supports immune health

Who Would Benefit?

  • Bone health
  • Immune health
  • Cardiovascular health
  • Optimal nutrient absorption
  • Optimizing overall health

Where can you get a good quality Vit. D with K2 and who can you trust?

There are many different sources to purchase this from but the question I have always had …“who can you trust?” Well I have set out on a search over the past 25 years to find the best quality supplements to offer to my patients and I have discovered the form of supplements that absorb at the highest rate of all on the market which are known as Isotonic.

View my next blog to learn more about why Isotonic Supplements have the highest rate of absorption.

Click here to discover the supplements that I offer to my patients…

7 Reasons to Take Omega III Fish Oils…

I’m sure you have heard some astonishing things about the Omega III Fish Oils by now. Research studies are published almost weekly where the scientific community discovers more and more amazing omega 3 benefits.  But let me share with you the 7 Best Reasons why this should be your first choice in taking supplements!

1.    Freedom from pain and inflammation. The National Institute of Health’s website, Medline Plus says, “Omega-3 fatty acids reduce pain and swelling.” How? Omega 3 fish oil fatty acids, particularly EPA, are involved in your body’s inflammatory response and inflammation cycle. Relieving the inflammation (swelling) will help reduce the pain.

2.    Better brain function and higher intelligence. Pregnant and nursing mothers who include omega 3 fatty acids in their diets, may have a positive impact on their babies intelligence. For adults, fish oil is also being researched in association with improved memory, recall, reasoning and focus.

3.    Feeling better with much less depression. Making you smarter is not all that fish oil may do for your brain. Psychiatry department researchers at the University of Sheffield UK, along with other research studies, have seen the possibility that the omega 3 fatty acids in fish oil supplements “alleviated” the symptoms of depression, bipolar and psychosis. [Journal of Affective Disorder Vol. 48(2-3);149-55]

4.    Lower incidence of childhood disorders. Just to show how fish oil fatty acids leave nobody out, studies suggest that children (and adults) with ADD and ADHD may experience a greatly improved quality of life. From Medline Plus, “Taking fish oil seems to improve thinking skills and behavior in 8 to 12 year-old children with ADHD.”

5.    Superior cardiovascular health. Research has suggested that the DHA, EPA and DPA in fish oil may have a positive effect on heart disease. According to Medline Plus, “Fish oil may be effective in keeping people with healthy hearts free of heart disease. People who already have heart disease may be able to lower their risk of dying from heart disease by taking fish oil. Though not all researchers agree, some investigators believe that fish oil may be even more effective in reducing death from heart attacks than a group of commonly used cholesterol-lowering drugs called “statins.”

6.    Protection from heart attack and stroke. When plaque builds up on arterial walls and then breaks loose, it causes what’s known as a thrombosis, which is a fancy way of saying clot. If a clot gets stuck in the brain, it causes a stroke and when it plugs an artery, it causes a heart attack. From Medline Plus: “Moderate fish consumption (once or twice a week) seems to lower the risk of having a stroke by as much as 27%.”

7.    Reduction of menstrual pain. And finally, it seem that fish oil may have a positive effect on the discomfort associated with menstrual pain or dysmenorrheal. According to Medline Plus: “Taking fish oil alone or in combination with vitamin B12 seems to improve painful periods and reduce the need for pain medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS).” That should be reason enough for every woman to include omega 3 fish oil in her daily routine!

%d bloggers like this: