What is your Gout trying to tell you?

The five most common forms of arthritis are:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Gout
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Lupus

According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, gout is one of the most painful forms of rheumatoid arthritis. Gout affects approximately 3.9% of the US population and has been steadily rising as more and more American’s struggle with obesity and hypertension. Statistically, more men are afflicted with this condition than women because men have higher uric acid levels in their blood than women.

There are four types of gout:

  1. Asymptomatic (without symptoms) Hyperuricemia – Elevated levels of uric acid only. No other symptoms.
  2. Gouty Arthritis or Acute Gout – Often triggered by aggravating diet, stress, alcohol or another illness. Attacks usually happen at night and subside within 3-10 days with or without treatment.
  3. Interval or Intercritical Gout – The symptom-free time between acute gout episodes. These intervals tend to get shorter and shorter over time.
  4. Chronic Tophaceous Gout – Usually develops over a long period of time (like 10 years) with possible permanent damage to the joints or kidneys.

Purines are natural chemical compounds found virtually every type of food. Here is a short video on purines in relationship to gout. Usually the body eliminates uric acid via the kidneys by dissolving it into urine. When excessive uric acid builds up and the kidneys can’t keep up, urate crystals can form. These sharp urate crystals can develop in the kidneys, joints or tissue surrounding joints, causing severe pain and inflammation.

A 12-year study on foods related to gout recommended primarily avoiding high-purine foods like hearts, herring, mussels, yeast, smelt, sardines, and sweetbreads. Moderately-high purine foods are game birds, mutton, veal, bacon, liver, salmon, trout, haddock and scallops.

Risk factors for gout include genetics, obesity, excessive weight gain (especially during youth) moderate or binge drinking, high blood pressure, abnormal kidney function, heart disease, joint injury, chemotherapy, diuretics, some medications (including low-dose aspirin, steroids and immunosuppressive drugs).

Use of steroids and pain-killers may temporary alleviate symptoms of gout, but a diagnosis of gout is a good indication that systemic problems have been brewing for a long time and some lifestyle and comprehensive nutritional changes need to take place.

Improving kidney function and reducing C-reactive proteins (an indication of systemic inflammation) are two key aspects to preventing gout. If you’re a bit fuzzy on what kidneys do, here is a quick three minute video on the critical role kidneys play in filtering the blood and supplying vital nutrients to the body.

Reducing or eliminating high-purine foods would clearly be a smart way to reduce the burden on the kidneys.  Supporting the body’s overall digestive health would also help kidney function and reduce uric acid imbalances. Drinking lots of fresh water and eating a high-alkaline diet full of fresh raw foods and fiber meets those objectives.

Studies have shown that many supplements can benefits gout-sufferers by improving kidney function, reducing systemic inflammation caused by free-radical damage and aiding in digestion. Click on the name of each supplement type below to see how it can address gout related problems:

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Studies show natural Resveratrol & Curcumin inhibit Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is a systemic chronic autoimmune disease that usually attacks the joints but can also turn against other systems of the body like the eyes, lungs, heart and nerves. RA is distinguished by developing in a symmetrical pattern (both hands, wrists, hips, etc.). Rheumatoid arthritis affects approximately 1% of the population, is most often seen in women, but tends to be more virulent in men. Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis (JRA) affects roughly 50,000 infants, children and teenagers in the US. Rheumatoid arthritis in children is sometimes referred to as Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA).

In autoimmune disorders the immune system malfunctions and attacks healthy cells in the body. RA is an autoimmune disease where unique cells called synovial fibroblasts or RASFs develop, invade and destroy tissue.

While antioxidant interventions have been shown to benefit RA in general, newer studies exploring the reduction and/or elimination of synovial fibroblasts in rheumatoid arthritis have yielded interesting outcomes.

The American College of Rheumatoidology published a 2007 study which set out to observe the behavior of natural resveratrol on human synovial fibroblasts. The study observed that natural resveratrol disrupted and triggered cellular death in synovial fibroblasts and concluded that resveratrol may be a “novel therapeutic agent for rheumatoid arthritis”.

Curcumin is another natural compound with potential for helping RA as well. While the anti-inflammatory aspects of curcumin have been well documented and studied in animals, to date only a few human trials have been completed. However, the results of a study of eighteen RA patients using 1200 mg of curcumin daily for two weeks found significantly less morning stiffness, joint swelling and improved walking time compared to another RA group using NSAID therapy (300 mg of phenzlbutazone daily).

A 2009 study focused on using resveratrol and curcumin together and proposed that these two natural substances be used in unison to reduce inflammation in osteoarthritis.

An important aspect of natural resveratrol and curcumin is that these compounds tend to have low bioavailability. Therefore, the quality of a resveratrol or curcumin supplement is paramount if it to be utilized effectively. Absorption is key.

Isotonix® Resveratrol has a synergistic blend of three patented forms of resveratrol (BioVin® Advanced, VitaBlue®, and Resveravine®). Isotonix® Resveratrol is also delivered in a drinkable isotonic form which provides up to 95% absorption into the bloodstream in approximately 5 minutes. Read more on what makes Isotonix® Resveratrol special.

Curcumin Extreme™ contains a patented form of curcumin called BCM-95®. BCM-95® is dramatically more available to the body than standard forms of curcumin. Read more on what makes Curcumin Extreme™ unique.

The Power of Isotonic Formulas Compared to Tablets

In 2009 a group of researchers in Italy conducted a study to see if an isotonic formula of a known highly effective Tablets vs liquidsantioxidant behaved differently on the body compared to the same antioxidant in tablet form.

Isotonix OPC-3® is a powdered antioxidant blend that when mixed with the appropriate amount of water becomes “isotonic“.  Isotonic means “same concentration” and is an ideal ratio between solid and liquids that our bodies convert what we ingest into before it can pass into the small intestine.

The four hour test compared Isotonix OPC-3® in a tablet form to Isotonix OPC-3® in its standard isotonic form.  The amount of water that was consumed with the tablet was equal to the amount of water used in the isotonic version.

Results of the test were startling. Levels of free radicals were measured in the blood plasma of test subjects.  The isotonic OPC-3® reduced free radicals six times more in just 10 minutes compared to the tablet version. The tablet form did eventually reduce free radicals substantially as well, but seriously lagged behind the isotonic form thorough out the four hour test .

Researchers concluded that “the findings demonstrate that the flavonoid mixture provided in isotonic OPC-3® is significantly more bio-available in humans, in terms of antioxidant activity than an equivalent mixture in tablet form.”  Overall the isotonic OPC-3® formulation resulted in a stronger antioxidative effect than an equivalent tablet form.

The results of this test highlight the importance of leveraging the advantage of isotonic formulas for established nutritional supplements like: Isotonix® Coenzyme Q10, Isotonix® Resveratrol, ORAC formulas, Isotonix® Vitamin D with K2, Isotonix® Calcium Plus, B Complex, Vitamin C, Acai, Probiotics, Isotonix® OPC-3 Beauty Blend, Multivitamins, Isotonix® Prenatal Multivitamin, Children’s vitamins, Digestive Enzymes, L-Tryptophan, Blood SugarVision formulas, Anti-aging and Joint Health Formulas. Reducing the amount of work the body needs to do in order to receive the nutritional benefits of these products provides significant “bottom line” results.

Absorbing Resveratrol is the Key

Michael J. Fox was recently on Oprah discussing the progress his Parkinson’s research foundation has made lock-and-keyseeking treatments for this degenerative disease. He referenced promising results Dr. Benjamin Wolozin discovered using the grape skin extract known as resveratrol.

In the grant abstract written for Michael J. Fox’s Parkinson’s Research Foundation, Dr. Wolozin discusses synthetic resveratrol formulas which are under production by the biotech-nology company Sirtris and states: “Despite its popular appeal, resveratrol suffers as a pharmacological compound because it is not absorbed by the body well”.

Fortunately another company has already tackled the absorption issues related to natural compounds like resveratrol and pycnogenol. The company is Isotonix® and they have addressed the human digestive process by providing nutrients in patented natural isotonic solutions. If a vitamin or antioxidant is delivered in an isotonic form, the body can receive maximum value in the shortest amount of time. Providing resveratrol, vitamins and other antioxidants by isotonic delivery is ideal for our digestive systems – natural, gentle, potent and effective.

Isotonix® Resveratrol is a combination of three patented ingredients combined in a synergistic formula.  They are Resveravine®, BioVin®, and VitaBlue®. A detailed description of this amazing combination is chronicled in my post “What makes Isotonix® Resveratrol Special“.

Cognitive deterioration may be prevented or reversed with Resveratrol

old-guy-eating-grapesThe aging process, along with several neurodegenerative diseases, causes synaptic deterioration in the brain.  As neurons and brain cells die off, connections are lost impacting learning and memory retention.  Doctors studying Alzheimer’s and other types of age-related dementia are encouraged by a new study on how resveratrol reversed cognitive deterioration in laboratory tests.

In addition to protecting cell health and longevity, SIRT1 is a gene that our bodies trigger when under various types of stress.  SIRT1 activation was initiated in mice that had developed comparable human neurodegenerative diseases.  The mice were treated with resveratrol, which reduced the rate of neuron and cell death and restored learning abilities back to the same level as the normal healthy mice.

“Thus, resveratrol is not only neuroprotective, it also improves cognitive function after severe neurodegeneration,” says Li-Huei Tsai, the research team leader and professor of neuroscience at MIT.

Previously it was thought that resveratrol could not cross the blood brain barrier, however a study done in 2002 indicated otherwise.  In fact, the final summary line stated:  “This study demonstrated for the first time that resveratrol, a polyphenolic antioxidant, can cross the blood-brain barrier and exert protective effects against cerebral ischemic injury.” (An ischemic injury is caused by insufficient oxygen or blood flow).

Resveratrol offers yet another safe and natural benefit that could actually improve cognitive function in cases of neurodegenerative disease.

Isotonix® Resveratrol

Resveratrol increases repair and protection of cells by 8 fold

Resveratrol is a potent antioxidant compound found in red wine grape skins and seeds. Resveratrol is also found in various amounts in several other types of plants and acts as a protective agent defending the plant from harmful environmental elements.

Several studies show that resveratrol also enhances human immune function and potential longevity. Well, the news on resveratrol continues to pour in with yet another significant benefit provided by this compound being touted in a new study.

A normal function that cells perform is folding proteins.  When cells misfold proteins and the immune system doesn’t catch them, the misfolded proteins set the stage for trouble.

Cells that experience stress, respond by producing “heat-shock proteins”.  These proteins were called SIRT1. These SIRT1 heat-shock proteins were given that name when it was observed that cells exposed to elevated temperatures generated these special proteins to protect and repair DNA and extend the life of the cell. Cells with SIRT1 activated are stronger, live longer and continue to perform their functions under stress.

Other types of cellular stress like calorie reduction and oxygen-deprivation also triggers SIRT1.  Resveratrol has shown a unique ability to stimulate SIRT1 production by as much as 8 fold without the presence of typical cell stress like heat, food reduction or reduced oxygen.

Resveratrol is plant compound found in grapes that has antioxidant abilities which neutralize free radicals and has demonstrated cancer preventative properties. By triggering SIRT1 production, it holds the potential for increasing life span by protecting cells and inhibiting age related disease.

Neurodegenerative diseases like Type II diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s all present significant amounts of misfolded protein cellular damage.  When SIRT1 levels fall cells are unable to properly respond to stress and systems of the body start to fail.  This also happens during the aging process.

According to research team leader, Richard I. Morimoto, professor of Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences “When SIRT1 levels are high, you are in a high-protection mode”. Resveratrol contributes to high SIRT1 levels.

“We now have a powerful way to think about addressing neurodegenerative diseases,” said Morimoto. “We have identified a pathway that can be manipulated to alter lifespan. Discovering this new basis for therapeutics is very exciting.”

Isotonix® Resveratrol

Isotonic – a better way of absorbing nutrients

liquidsThe term “isotonic” means “same concentration”. This condition occurs when the amount of dissolved particles inside of a semi-permeable membrane equals the amount of dissolved particles on the outside of that membrane. Body fluids like tears, blood plasma, and lymph all have varying degrees of tonicity.

When we eat food or swallow supplements, the stomach uses muscle contractions and secretes extra fluids (or absorbs excess fluids) until the contents reach an optimum ratio between the solids and liquids. At that point the solution is in an isotonic state and is ready to cross semi-permeable membranes in the small intestine. The amount of energy required to achieve this state varies based on the type of food (or supplement), amount of food, quality and quantity of digestive enzymes, and stomach pH. This digestive process usually takes 6-8 hours.

The unique aspect of products made by Isotonix® is that the digestive process is acknowledged and addressed by providing nutritional supplements that the stomach doesn’t have to work on. Isotonix® nutrients are delivered into the stomach ready to be absorbed because they are already in an isotonic state. Therefore the beneficial elements are immediately available and quickly absorbed.

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Resveratrol – Good or Bad for Estrogen Related Cancers?

young-womanResveratrol is being widely discussed due to the positive results it demonstrates on anti-aging, cardiovascular health, cancer suppression, obesity related illness, and accelerated tissue healing.

So regarding estrogen-related cancers, why are some doctors recommending avoiding the use of resveratrol?

Well, a 1997 study by the National Academy of Sciences concluded that resveratrol has a molecular structure that is similar to synthetic estrogen and was identified as a phytoestrogen (plant based estrogen).

In December 1997, Dr. Barry Gehm at Northwestern University Medical School explained that: “Estrogen” is not a specific compound but a category of substances defined by their biological effect. Originally named for their ability to induce estrus (“going into heat”) in animals, estrogens act on cells by binding to a protein called estrogen receptor, which then causes certain genes to be expressed, or “turned on.”

The researchers found that certain breast cancer cells that require estrogen were able to survive and proliferate in a resveratrol environment. Therefore, it was prudent to recommend that anyone with a estrogen related cancer should avoid use of resveratrol unless they had received their doctor’s approval.

As research continued on resveratrol, a 2008 study conducted by Dr. Eleanor Rogan at the University of Nebraska Medical Center made a striking observation. This study found that resveratrol’s antioxidant effects may be able to prevent breast cancer before it even starts!

In a press release, Dr. Rogan stated: “Resveratrol has the ability to prevent the first step that occurs when estrogen starts the process that leads to cancer by blocking the formation of the estrogen DNA adducts.  We believe that this could stop the whole progression that leads to breast cancer down the road.”

When estrogen gets out of balance, dangerous estrogen metabolites appear which can initiate the growth of tumors. Dr. Rogan’s research group found that resveratrol increased the production of an enzyme that destroys these dangerous estrogen metabolites thus preventing tumors from being formed.

Medical science is a vast field and new discoveries are made daily.  As in all serious matters in life, research and professional advise help immensely when sorting through available information.

So, when it comes to estrogen related cancer, stay on top of the continuing research being conducted on resveratrol beginning with discussions with your health care provider.

Isotonix® Resveratrol

Getting More Glutathione and Antioxidant Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

The elusive nature of multiple sclerosis has been a source of clinical studies for years.  Researchers at the VU reaching-manUniversity Medical Center in Amsterdam released the results of a study treating 14 multiple sclerosis patients with a combination of antioxidants and other nerve-protecting agents.  The treatment resulted in reductions of relapses by two to three fold, plus decreases in corticosteroid medications.

The study concluded that oxidative stress can be counteracted by naturally occurring antioxidant enzymes which go on to provide protection against future oxidative damage to cells and tissue.

Glutathione is a naturally occuring antioxidant which is produced within the cells of our bodies providing protection against toxins.  Lack of glutathione is seen in virtually every instance of disease, including multiple sclerosis.

Glutathione can only be internally generated, therefore it is important to ingest supplements which will stimulate glutathione production.  Vitamin D3, vitamin K, pycnogenolalpha-lipoic acid, curcumin, resveratrol, B vitamins, and L-tryptophan all stimulate the cellular production of glutathione.

Isotonix® D with K2
Isotonix OPC-3®
Curcumin Extreme™
Isotonix® Resveratrol
Isotonix® B Complex
Isotonix® L-tryptophan
Prime™ Astaxanthin Cardio & Visual Vitality Formula

Antioxidants Reverse the Effects of Diabetic Neuropathy

Click to view video

Click to view video

Several studies have shown neuropathy symptoms such as pain, numbness, burning and prickling sensations significantly improved after subjects suffering from diabetes were given antioxidants.

Dr. Feldman, Professor of Neurology at the University of Michigan, noted that excessive sugar in the blood plasma creates free radicals which damage the DNA in nervous system cells.  Oxygen transport in the DNA is halted by the build up of free radicals.  This resulting DNA damage is a major contributing factor in diabetic neuropathy.

The key to counteracting free radicals is introducing antioxidants.

Remember, free radicals are charged molecules that attack neighboring molecules in order to steal their electrons.  Free radicals punch through cell membranes and tear apart DNA structures in these neighboring cells.  This, in turn, creates more damaged cells which generate more free radicals and the wave of cellular destruction continues.  This process is a form of oxidation or oxidative stress.

Antioxidants prevent and inhibit oxidation.

Protecting sensitive nerve cells from free radical damage is a safe, natural, and effective means of coping with neuropathy while repairing existing oxidative stress.

Michigan Pain Consultants Study
Mayo Clinic Study

Isotonix® Antioxidant
Super antioxidants: Isotonix OPC-3®and Isotonix® Resveratrol

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