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Linus Pauling Institute Newsletter Spring/Summer 2006

[Vitamin C intake reduces cold frequency dramatically] Vitamin C and the Common Cold
Thirty studies were examined that addressed the effect of vitamin C on the duration of colds.  In these studies, there was a consistent benefit, whtin a reduction in duration of 8% to 14%.... In a 5 year study comparing 500 mg vitamin C/day vs. 50 mg/day, the risk of contracting three or more colds in the 5-year period was decreased by 66% by the daily intake of 500-mg vitamin C supplement.

[Intravenous vitamin C promising against cancer] Intravenous vitamin C and Cancer
Vitamin C has re-emerged as a promising substance in the adjunctive treatment of cancer.  A new study from NIHreviews clinical cases of three patients who benefited.  A renal cancer with lung metastases regressed after IV of 65 g of vitamin C twice a week for 10 months.  Invasive bladder cancer regressed after 30 g vitamin C IV 2x per week for 3 months, then occasionally for 4 years.  B-cell lymphoma received 15 g IV 2x week for 2 months, then occasionally.  All three patients experienced complete remissions. Journal of Am. Col. of Nutrition in 2003 reported 2 cases of women with late-stage ovarian cancer who got complete remissions after 60 g of IV vitamin C 2x week.  Phase I clinical trials to evaluate safety of IV vitamin C for cancer are underway at McGill Univ. in Montreal in 2006. In a phase I trial of 24 late-stage cancer patients for 8 weeks, one with a prior history of kidney stones developed a stone after 13 days.

[fishoil is anti-inflammatory] EPA and DHA in fish oil are anti-inflammatory and may reduce the risk of heart disease in obese individuals.  Insulin resistance, oxidative stress, and dysfunction of pancreatic beta cells may be attenuated with alpha-lipoic acid and acetyl-L-carntine.  Selenium supplementation in rats alleviated inflammation associated with liver damage.  Catchins in tea provide protection from colon tumors induced by cooked meat mutagens.  (much more cited in other statements at Nutrition Investigator)

[Oxygen Club of California meeting notes] Neurodegeneration, an interview with Joseph Beckman, Ph.D. Coenzyme Q10 is only weakly protective of the brain in animal models.  Most patients with Parkinson's disease are taking large amounts of it…Oxidative stress and brain inflammation play a major role in brain disease including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and ALS.  "We have become very interested inTory Hagen's research on lipoic acid and acetyl-L-carnitine, two 'age-essential' substances that induce genes that help you resist stress."

[aspirin reduces Alzheimer's risk] Neurodegeneration, an interview with Joseph Beckman, Ph.D. Coenzyme - People who have arthritis and take an NSAID or other anti-inflammatory drug have a much lower risk of Alzheimer's disease…There are conflicting studies on vitamin E and Alzheimer's.  The overall effect seems to be a small improvement on quality of life, but  no effect on survival.

[Vitamin E must be taken with food]Maret Traber has shown that vitamin E is only absorbed if it's taken with food.  It it's taken in the morning with coffee, you absorb very little, which is a problem in the design of many studies.

[zinc deficiency common, but overdose hazardous] Large doses of zinc impair copper absorption.  Then iron cannot be inserted properly into hemoglobin.  Zinc itself is toxic to neurons.  But zinc deficiency is a chronic problem in the US - after magnesium, it's the second greatest mineral deficiency.  [note elsewhere at Nutrtion Investigator, one zinc tablet or 2-3 zinc lozenges per day are beneficial when first getting a cold.]

[how broccoli reduces cancer risk]  Cruciferous vegetables and cancer risk, Jane Higdon Ph.D.
67% of studies before 1996 found an inverse relationship between intake of cruciferous vegetables and cancer.  Recommended intake for adults is 5 servings (2 ½ cups) per week. Boiling them 9-15 minutes decreases active compounds 20-60%.  Best to eat them raw or microwaved on low power.  Cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, kale, koghlrabi, mustard, rutabaga, turnips, radish, watercress, bok choy, argula, wasabi, horseradish.  They are rick in folate, chlorophyll, and glucosinolates, sulfur-containing compounds that cause the bitter taste.  Chopping or chewing them releases myrosinase, that breaks them down to produce biologically active compounds like indoles and isothiocyanattes.  Folate repairs DNA preventing expression of cancer-related genes.  Chlorophyll forms tight complexes that inactivate tobacco smoke and charred meat carcinogens.  Article provides details how glucosinolate breakdown reduces breast, prostate, and other cancer risks.

 

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