Vitamin D and Brain (cognitive) Function in Older Adults; Yes, More is Better

sunshine3This study looked at over 3000 adults ages 70-79 and compared cognitive function at baseline and four years later. Those with Vitamin D levels (25-hydroxy-vitamin-D) that were below 20 ng/mL had the lowest starting cognitive function and the most decline over 4 years, and those starting with vitamin D levels above 30 ng/mL started with better function and declined the least.  

Numerous studies have shown improved brain function, less neuro-psychiatric problems, and less cancer and heart disease for those with higher vitamin D levels.  Many studies show maximal protection at levels above 50 ng/mL,  hence my recommendation that you aim for an optimal level of 50-80 ng/mL. 

For teens and adults, and pregnant moms, this usually means taking 5000 IU vit D3 daily. Newborns and infants should supplement at least 1000 IU daily and when they are about 20 Kg (40 lbs), taking 2000 IU Vit D 3 is likely the right dose.  When taking higher than recommended doses, please have your level of vitamin D checked after a few months.  This is a fat soluble vitamin and in rare cases you could take too much and experience toxicity.

You can read more about this study here…

 

Dr. Paul

The Gut Micro Biome (bacteria/ probiotics) Decrease Type I Diabetes/IDDM, Colic, Reflux (GER), and Constipation in Infants and NEC in Preemies

Gut MicrobiotaThe study “Compromised gut microbiota networks in children with anti-islet cell autoimmunity”, published in the March 2014 issue of “Diabetes”, should send a warning shot to all who care for children to do everything we can to promote diversity of the gut bacteria (give probiotics from birth and even during pregnancy), and do everything we can to minimize destruction of the gut bacteria (avoid antibiotics).

We have known for some time now that Type I Diabetes is an autoimmune attack of the islet cells in the pancreas. How to avoid this has eluded us so far. Common sense would suggest we avoid formaldehyde, which is present in many vaccines, and is also formed within our bodies when we ingest aspartame (Nutrasweet, Splenda). The major environmental exposures come from working with it in industry, from cigarette smoke, and from the off-gassing of particle board and plywood.

The JAMA Pediatrics March 2014 article “Prophylactic Use of a probiotics in the prevention of Colic, Regurgitation and Functional Constipation”, showed an almost 50% reduction in spitting up and hours fussing, and a slight reduction in constipation. The study used the probiotics L. Reuteri DSM 17938. This further confirms the benefits of probiotics in infants, and in this case, for L Reuteri. This strain is available form Gaia, and is made from mother’s milk. It can also be found in Gerber Soothe.

A recent Pediatrics article “Probiotic Effects on Late-onset sepsis in very preterm Infants: a randomized Controlled Trial”, showed reduced necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) by over 50% in preterm infants born before 32 weeks and under 1500 grams. They used a combination of Bifidobacterium Infantis, Streptococcus Thermophilus, and Bifidobacterium Lactis with 1 billion organisms.

Compromised gut microbiota networks in children with anti-islet cell autoimmunity- Read More Here….

Prophylactic Use of a Probiotic in the Prevention of Colic, Regurgitation, and Functional Constipation- Read More Here….

Probiotic Effects on Late-onset Sepsis in Very Preterm Infants: A Randomized Controlled Trial- Read More Here…

 

Dr. Paul

Type 2 Diabetes Risk Based on Genetic SNP’s, Methylation Related Risk

type-2-diabeticsWhen you hear that something is genetic, does your mind think, “then I’m doomed, there is nothing I can do about it?”  I recommend you change your first thought to this, “genetic means epigenetic, so there must be some changes I can make to avoid this disorder, disease, or condition”.

This study measured almost half a million CpG sites in human pancreatic islets and identified 1,649 CpG sites and 853 genes where there was a difference in DNA methylation in the Type 2 diabetics (T2D) when compared to non-T2D controls.  They go on to list some of these better known loci (areas/ sites) like TCF7L2, FTO, KCNQ1, and for altered gene expression, CDKN1A, PDE7B, SEPT9, and EXOC3L2.   The study provides this detailed map of the methylome (new word for me that I suspect means the methylation genome) in the human pancreatic islets and concludes that altered DNA methylation in human islets contributes to perturbed hormone secretion and the pathogenesis of Type 2 Diabetes.

 

TAKE HOME POINT:

Since methylation seems to be critical for most “genetic”, meaning epigenetic, issues, you should support your methylation cycle.  This requires many vitamins with B2, B3, B6, methyl-folate, and methyl-B12 being most important.  If you want to be sure you are getting these key nutrients into the cells (that’s where you need them), consider having your blood tested here using Spectracell Micronutrient Testing (MNT).  This is a test I have done for over 10 years in my pediatrics practice (www.drpaul.md) and I am now offering for adults at Natura (www.naturaintegrativemedicine.com).

 You can read more about this study here…

 

Dr. Paul