Archives for: February 2009
One Little Sentence Vit D AWsec
The pile of books next to my favorite reading chair keeps getting larger as I find myself taking every health book out of my local library. I am not much of a reader for pleasure but I do enjoy reading for information. The more health or medical related the more I like it. I try and take time out each day to read from some of the books.
It was about a week ago that I came across this quote from a book entitled:
"Feed Your Genes Right: Eat to turn off Disease Causing Genes and Slow Down Aging", by Jack Challem.
"In addition, grain consumption reduces vitamin D absorption." Page 195.
I was intrigued because of a recent discussion on the Chat Right Forum. A few of the women on the forum had had their Vitamin D levels tested and were taking supplements. Low vitamin D has been implicated in some forms of cancer so certainly it would be important to supplement if your vitamin D levels are low.
I then went to the internet to see if I could find any more information about the authors source of this sentence.
I found the following from an interview with Loren Cordain, PhD and author of the "Paleo Diet". Cordain is a proponent of returning to man's original ancestral diet, a hunter/gatherer diet.
"Robert Crayhon (interviewer): How do they (grains) alter vitamin D metabolism?
Loren Cordain: Epidemiological studies of populations consuming high levels of unleavened whole grain breads show vitamin D deficiency to be widespread. A study of radio-labelled 25 hydroxyvitamin D3 (25(OH)D3) in humans consuming 60g of wheat bran daily for 30 days clearly demonstrated an enhanced elimination of 25(OH)D3 in the intestinal lumen. The mechanism by which cereal grain consumption influences vitamin D is unclear. Some investigators have suggested that cereal grains may interfere with the enterohepatic circulation of vitamin D or its metabolites, whereas others have shown that calcium deficiency increases that rate of inactivation of vitamin D in the liver. This effect is mediated by 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D) produced in response to secondary hyperparathyroidism, which promotes hepatic conversion of vitamin D to polar inactivation products which are excreted in bile. Consequently, the low Ca/P ratio of cereal grains has the ability to elevate PTH which in turn stimulates increased production of (1,25(OH)2D) which causes an accelerated loss of 25 hydroxy vitamin D."
This is in technical terms, but basically it means that a diet high in grains will keep vitamin D from being absorbed properly this is exactly what I had read in Mr. Challem's book. Sadly the american diet is about 70% grains, the current food pyrimid recommends 6-11 servings of whole grains per day. Americans are actually encouraged to eat whole wheat products as part of a healthy cancer prevention diet.
From what I just read it would be safe to say that the standard american diet keeps us from properly absorbing vitamin D, which puts us at greater risk for cancer.
Now wouldn't it have been good if the doctor who gave those women the vitamin D supplement also discussed the importance of how grains effect vitamin D absorption?
Over the last few months I have been digging through the health section of my local library. It is hard for me to read these books because I can see so many flaws in the one size fits all approach they promote. Though I'm at odds with their contents I still force myself to at least take them home and browse their pages if nothing but to know the latest diet concept being championed.
This week one book caught my attention titled, Is It In Your Genes? The Influence of Genes on Common Disorders and Diseases That Affect You and Your Family By Philip R. Reilly. Reilly writes for the layperson, so his book is easy to understand. He is a graduate of Yale University and has credibility in the world of genetics research.
From the title I thought it might have something useful in it. I can't say I read the book cover to cover but I did find this little gem at the conclusion of the book.
"Nutritional genetics will be a central feature of wellness programs. Motivated individuals will adhere to diets and consume particular nutraceuticals based on compatibility with their genetic profile. The rapidly growing nutrition business will be based on far more credible scientific evidence than it is today. Nutritional counseling will be replete with genetic analysis. Much of the focus will be on using a combination of genetic information, dietary choice, and fitness regimes to pursue a robust wellness into the ninth decade. Current ideas about extending the human life span will lead to the creation of products that really do increase the chances of becoming a centenarian." pg. 243-244
I really liked this paragraph. It made me aware that although the rest of the world is far behind Dr. D'Adamo in their approach to diet and health the wheels are turning.
It's easy to get discouraged with the current health information promoted by mainstream media, but anyone who listens carefully and reads alternative view points will begin to hear a different perspective. One that promotes individual wellness and looks at knowing health risk factors as tools to enable us to decrease the risk of disease for generations to come.
If this were to become the norm, spending billions of dollars on health care would become unnecessary and perhaps enable us to focus the resources of our world in a more efficient manner.