Nutrition Update for the Week of January 29th, 2007

Augmenting Zinc Supplementation with Vitamins A and D May Increase Plasma Concentrations of Zinc: Implications for Alzheimer ‘s Disease and Other Diseases – In this study, researchers found that when zinc was combined with vitamins A and D, plasma zinc went up faster than and higher than any other combination tried. This is significant especially with the elderly who are notorious for being zinc deficient.

Increased Dietary Intake of Omega-3 PUFAs from Plant Sources May Improve Bone Health – This study suggest that supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids may improve bone health via a reduction in bone resorption. Yet another reason to take at least 1 gram of omega-3’s daily (3 grams would be even better in my opinion).

Maternal Intake of Folic Acid During Early Pregnancy May Lower Risk of Isolated Cleft Lip (with or without cleft palate) in Infants – Cleft palate is a tough disease to go through as it requires multiple surgeries in many cases to correct. Taking a nominal amount of folic acid every day (400 micrograms) has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of an infant developing a cleft palate. One word of caution, there is some evidence that too much folate (over 2 milligrams daily) may increase the risk of having a child with cleft palate. Doing a simple organic acid in urine test from MetaMetrix can give you a strong clue if you are folate deficient. The marker they use is formiminoglutamic acid or FIGLU for short.

Elevated Homocysteine and Low Folate May Exert a Negative Effect on Specific Cognitive Domains – Yet another reason to supplement with folic acid. Test yourself for homocysteine as early in life as possible and work on lowering it. The blood test is available through many major labs and should become a standard of care.

Green Tea may Alleviate Diabetes in Rodents – One of the active ingredients in green tea, ECGC, is beginning to get a lot of good press, especially in the treatment of obesity. In this study, it seems to be beneficial in treating diabetes.

Association between Low Plasma Vitamin D and Type 1 Diabetes in Young Adults – As my regular readers know, I am a big vitamin D fan and this study just keeps my enthusiasm going. Get yourself a bottle and take at least 800 IU’s a day in the winter, spring and fall and 400 IU’s in the summer.

Supplementation with Korean Red Ginseng May Improve Glucose and Insulin Regulation in Subjects with Well-Controlled Type 2 Diabetes – This is another in a string of studies I have read that show benefits of ginseng with diabetes.

Choline: Critical Role During Fetal Development and Dietary Requirements in Adults – Choline is one of those great brain nutrients that may have a lot of other benefits including the reduction of homocysteine via its conversion into the essential amino acid methionine.

Come back next week for another update and don’t forget to go to Vitasearch for more details on the studies reviewed here today.