Friday, November 8, 2013

Omega-3 Fatty Acid Compound Found to Halt Cancerous Tumor Growth and Metastasis

Mainstream media sources continue to trumpet headlines about the decline in cancer rates leading many to believe that modern medicine has conquered this devastating disease through a systematic regimen of slashing, burning and poisoning. Yet nearly 1.7 million people will be diagnosed with some form of cancer this year and more than 550,000 will die from the number two killer of men, women and children. These statistics should not be surprising as millions of unsuspecting individuals continue to avoid lifestyle modifications that have been shown to dramatically lower the risk of cancer.

Omega-3 DHA Metabolite Stops Cancerous Metastasis by Halting Blood Supply to Tumors
Many people would be amazed to know that there are a host of natural nutrients that have been scientifically validated to prevent, treat and halt the metastatic spread of some of the most invasive cancer lines. Researchers from the University of California Davis Health System have found that a product resulting from a metabolized omega-3 fatty acid helps combat cancer by cutting off the supply of oxygen and nutrients that fuel tumor growth and spread of the disease. They have published their findings in the prestigious journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The bioactive long-chain omega-3 fat, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), found in its free form in fatty fish and fish oil supplements, is broken down by the body into a metabolite form known as epoxy docosapentaenoic acid (EDP). Scientists know that tumor growth is promoted by the process of blood vessel formation called angiogenesis, and determined that by inhibiting this growth pattern, EDP reduces the growth and metastatic spread of tumors in a mouse model. This research provides the first scientific evidence about EDP’s potent anti-cancer, anti-metastatic effects.

Eat Fish Regularly or Supplement Daily with a Quality DHA Fish Oil Product to Halt Cancer Cell Growth
Lead study author, Dr. Guodong Zhang commented “Our investigation opens up a new understanding of the pathways by which omega-3 fatty acids exert their biologic effects… as far as we know, EDPs are the first signaling lipids that have been discovered to have such potent anti-cancer effects.” Researchers found that as EDP’s are broken down through normal body enzymatic metabolism, the metabolites of these lipids can act to suppress the growth of new blood vessels that are necessary to feed tumor growth.

The researchers also found that an imbalance of omega-6 fats to omega-3 fats that occurs in a diet high in sunflower and corn oils produces a metabolite known as arachidonic acid (ARA) that has the opposite effect of EDP. ARA increases angiogenesis and tumor progression and is a primary dietary cause of cancer development and metastasis. The study team concluded “Our results designate EDP as a unique mediator of an angiogenic switch to regulate tumorigenesis.” Additionally the scientists have established a firm link between omega-6 and omega-3 fat ratios in the development of cancer. Nutrition experts recommend 1,200 to 2,400 mg of EPA/DHA from a distilled fish oil supplement to lower the risk from cardiovascular disease and cancer progression.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Omega-3 Fats Found in Fish Oil Boost Immune Response to Help Fight Inflammation and Disease

Most people take a healthy immune response for granted, as it typically remains on guard detecting a host of known and as yet unidentified pathogens that may threaten our health. Bacteria and viruses that cause the common cold, flu, digestive distress and a variety of potentially fatal illnesses are identified and destroyed before they cause more than a minor discomfort. For most of the past decade, fish consumption and supplementing with DHA and EPA fortified supplements has been shown to lower levels of systemic inflammation and significantly reduce the risk of developing many cancers, stroke and cardiovascular disease, yet the precise mechanism of action has been unknown.

Fish Oil Fats, DHA and EPA Stimulate Immune System B cells to Fight Inflammation and Disease Risk
A group of researchers from the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Michigan State University have published the result of their work in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology that shows how DHA-rich fish oil enhances B cell activity, a white blood cell that is critical to activate our immune response. One of the study authors, Dr. Jennifer Fenton explained “Fish oil may have immune enhancing properties that could benefit immunocompromised individuals.”

Omega-3 fat sources including fish oil include the long chain fatty acids, DHA and EPA that have been shown in a number of prior studies to reduce total body inflammation that help to lower the risk of developing many chronic illnesses including cancer, heart disease, dementia and stroke. Researchers now uncover how these special fats enhance B-cell activity, a white blood component necessary to improve immune system activity and lower inflammatory response.

Supplement Daily with A Distilled Fish Oil Capsule to Squelch Inflammation and Lower Disease Risk
Researchers used two mouse models to conduct their study, one group was fed a control diet and the other was fed a diet supplemented with DHA-rich fish oil for a period of five weeks. B cells were taken from various tissues and the scientists then looked for markers of B cell activation on the cell surface, B cell membrane changes, and B cell cytokine production to assess immune response activation.

The team found that those mice supplemented with DHA-enriched fish oil demonstrated B cell activation and antibody production to aid immune response and pathogen clearance, while damping systemic inflammation. The authors concluded “This work confirms similar findings on fish oil and B cells… and moves us one step closer to understanding the immune enhancing properties of EPA and DHA.” Adults should supplement with a distilled fish oil preparation (1,200 to 2,400 mg EPA/DHA per day) to fight inflammation and heighten immune system response.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Consuming Omega-3 Fats from Fish and Supplements Lowers Mortality by One-Third

Health researchers have known for some time that eating fish regularly provides health benefits to help protect against cardiovascular disease, stroke and overall mortality. The primary long-chain fats, DHA and EPA have been shown to improve innate immune response by stimulating the effectiveness of B cells to lower systemic inflammation. Until recently, scientists have not been able to determine the impact of omega-3 fats on risk reduction for specific diseases or decline in mortality.

Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of Washington, publishing the results of a study in the Annals of Internal Medicine have found that older adults who have higher blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids, commonly found in fatty fish and seafood, may be able to lower their overall mortality risk by as much as 27 percent and their risk of dying from heart disease by about 35 percent. Older individuals with the highest levels of omega-3 fats in their blood lived an average of 2.2 years longer than those with lower levels.

Eating Fatty Fish or Fish Oil Supplements Dramatically Lowers Risk from a Fatal Heart Attack
The study is regarded as the first to assess how serum blood levels of DHA and EPA omega-3 fats relate to total mortality and specific causes of mortality in a general population. Study author, Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian commented Although eating fish has long been considered part of a healthy diet, few studies have assessed blood omega-3 levels and total deaths in older adults… our findings support the importance of adequate blood omega-3 levels for cardiovascular health, and suggest that later in life these benefits could actually extend the years of remaining life.”

To conduct their study, researchers examined sixteen years of data from about 2,700 U.S. adults, aged 65 or older, who participated in the Cardiovascular Health Study. All participants were healthy at the start of the study, and during follow up each had blood drawn, underwent physical exams and diagnostic testing, and were questioned about their health status, medical history, and lifestyle. Blood samples were tested for all omega-3 components (DHA, EPA and DPA) at the study outset and during follow up.

Eat Fatty Fish Three Times a Week or Supplement Daily to Slash Hear Disease Risk Factors
After adjusting for demographic, cardiovascular, lifestyle, and dietary factors, the scientists found that all three fatty acids combined were associated with a significantly lower risk of mortality (27 percent). When broken down by type, the researchers found that high DHA blood levels were associated with a 40 percent reduction in death from coronary heart disease. EPA and DPA were most strongly linked with lowered risk for stroke death and EPA significantly reduced non-fatal heart attack risk.

The team determined that the largest benefit was increasing omega-3 fat intake from a very low level to 400 mg per day. Dr. Mozaffarian concluded “The findings suggest that the biggest bang-for-your-buck is for going from no intake to modest intake, or about two servings of fatty fish per week.” Past research studies have determined that all individuals with no risk factors for heart disease should consume fatty fish three times per week or supplement with 1,200 mg fish oil daily. Those with multiple risk factors should increase intake to 2,400 mg combined EPA/DHA daily to minimize heart disease risk and extend lifespan.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Excess Salt Consumption Implicated in Millions of Heart Disease Deaths Worldwide

New cases of cardiovascular disease continue to mount in the US and worldwide, making this the leading killer of men, women and children in western cultures. Enlightened, health-conscious individuals now understand that heart disease is not only preventable, but also treatable in all but the most advanced stages. Lifestyle modifications including elimination of processed and fried foods, smoking cessation, stress reduction and adequate physical activity are among some of the changes that promote heart health and dramatically lower future disease risk.

Excess Dietary Sodium Increases Blood Pressure, Dramatically Raising Incidence of Heart Attack and Stroke
Excess salt consumption from synthetic salt products is a known risk factor for early heart disease, but researchers now report that sodium, largely coming from the disproportionate amount of processed foods that many people eat, is killing millions around the globe. Scientists from the Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health now report the result of their research that found how eating too much salt contributed to 2.3 million deaths from heart attacks, strokes and other heart-related diseases throughout the world in 2010, representing 15 percent of all deaths due to these causes.

Researchers presented their findings to the American Heart Association's Epidemiology and Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism 2013 Scientific Sessions. Lead study author, Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian commented “National and global public health measures, such as comprehensive sodium reduction programs, could potentially save millions of lives.” To conduct their study, scientists analyzed data from 247 surveys of adult sodium intake, sorted by age, gender, and region spanning 50 countries over a 20 year period.

Lower Daily Salt Intake to 1,000 mg or Below to Limit Vascular Disease
The team then determined how the amount of sodium people were consuming was affecting their risk for cardiovascular disease in a large cohort of 107 randomized trials that determined the impact of sodium consumption on elevation of blood pressure. They determined that an optimal daily sodium intake of 1,000 mg was optimal. The current target in the US for adults is 2,300 mg per day, and many people who eat regularly at fast food restaurants and prepare meals using processed and refined foods can consume 3,500 to 5,000 mg per day, placing them at considerable risk for chronic vascular disease.

Researchers determined that nearly one million deaths occurring during the study period were due to excessive sodium consumption. This represented forty percent of all deaths recorded, as sixty percent occurred in men and forty percent in women. The US ranked nineteenth out of the thirty largest countries where 429 deaths per million (one in ten) were attributable to excess sodium intake. Nutrition experts explain that added salt should always be from natural salts containing the full-spectrum of minerals that encourage healthy cellular metabolism. Eliminating canned and refined food consumption, and closely monitoring processed salt usage could prevent the early demise of millions worldwide over the next decade.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Increased Dietary Fiber Consumption Dramatically Lowers Risk of First Stroke Event

Incidence of stroke in the US and western cultures continues to grow at a staggering rate as it takes the lives of nearly 150,000 Americans each year, making this debilitating illness the fourth leading cause of preventable death. Closely aligned with heart disease and other vascular disorders, stroke is the result of several key modifiable lifestyle factors including smoking, lack of regular exercise and poor dietary choices that promote arterial hardening and blood clots that circulate until they reach a narrowed artery, wreaking permanent disability or death.

Dietary Fiber Improves Blood Lipids and Removes Excess Fats to Lower Stroke Risk
A research team from the University of Leeds in the UK has published the result of a study in the American Heart Association journal, Stroke that explains how taking steps to include more fiber in your diet could help to protect you from suffering a stroke. The study team leader, Dr. Diane Threapelton noted “Most people do not get the recommended level of fiber, and increasing fiber may contribute to lower risk for strokes… we must educate consumers on the continued importance of increasing fiber intake and help them learn how to increase fiber in their diet.

The recommended daily intake for fiber is currently set at 25 grams, yet most people eat less than 10 grams due to the high number of calories consumed from an increasingly refined diet. Food processing removes most nutrients and fiber from foods, while fortifying with added sugars, fats and flavorings to prompt immediate taste satisfaction. Dietary fiber (soluble and insoluble) comes from plants, a critical food source that is grossly lacking in many western diets.

Dramatically Lower Stroke Risk by Including Ten Daily Servings of Fiber
Scientists focused on eight large-scale studies published over a 22 years span that assessed the impact of diet on both ischemic (caused by a blood clot) and hemorrhagic (caused by blood vessel leakage) stroke. After adjusting for risk variables such as smoking and age, the researchers found that for every seven gram increase in fiber consumed daily, risk of first time stroke goes down by seven percent. You would need to consume 6 to 8 servings of grains and 8 to 10 servings of vegetables and fruits daily to yield 25 grams of fiber.

Dr. Threapelton concluded Greater intake of fiber-rich foods such as whole-grains, fruits, vegetables and nuts are important for everyone, and especially for those with stroke risk factors like being overweight, smoking and having high blood pressure. Top sources for dietary fiber include nuts and seeds, legumes, oats, the pulp of some fruits, broccoli and carrots. Eliminating refined convenience foods will allow you to incorporate sufficient fiber from natural sources to significantly lower the risk for a first stroke event.