This Weeks Nutrition Update

Inverse Association between Serum Methylmalonic Acid Levels and Cognitive Function in the Elderly – Elevated methylmalonate in urine is a strong marker for vitamin B12 deficiency. In this study, there was a strong relationship between vitamin B12 deficiency and poor cognitive function in elderly subjects. Due to poor gut performance as we get older, it is not surprising to see this outcome. Supplementation with a good multivitamin/mineral is recommended.

Higher Total Folate Intake May Reduce the Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease in Older Persons – This study looked at the relationship between dietary intake of vitamins B6, B12, and folic acid and found that only folate intake was related to an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. While there may be no causative relationship, I would certainly hedge my bet by supplementing with a high-quality B-complex.

Long-Term Folic Acid Supplementation Improves Cognitive Function in Older Subjects – Another well done study that seems to suggest the real value of folic acid and brain function in the elderly.

Higher Dietary Intake of Heme Iron and Red Meat May Increase Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Women with Type 2 Diabetes – Women with Type 2 Diabetes should think twice before having that steak or hamburger. Lowering your dietary intake or red meat to once or twice a week seems highly prudent. Also, make sure any supplements you take contain less than 15 mg of iron in a daily dose. In addition, the next time you go to your physician for a checkup, make sure he looks at your iron level when he orders a blood test for you.

High Dose Zinc Supplementation May Negatively Affect Certain Aspects of Urinary Physiology – While zinc is an important trace mineral, this study suggests, and I concur, that over supplementation may not be beneficial. 40 milligrams a day is adequate but testing your levels would be the smartest thing to do. an RBC mineral test from Doctor’s Data or MetaMetrix is the best way to assess your mineral levels.

Serum Uric Acid Levels Associated with Risk of Incidence of Hypertension – Uric acid is one of your body’s top antioxidant compounds. When it becomes elevated, I believe that your body is telling you it needs help in protecting itself from oxidative stress which can lead to hypertension. Adding a broad spectrum of antioxidants like vitamin C, E, selenium or Acai (OptiAcai only) is the best way to go.

Supplementation with the Probiotic Lactobacillus Reuteri May Improve Colicky Symptoms in Breastfed Infants – Adding probiotics are an excellent way of helping colicky babies get relief. You can get it in a powder form from your local health food store (make sure it is refrigerated).

For more information about these studies and others like it, go to the Clinical Pearls Database .