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New Study Overturns Beliefs About How Salt Affects Thirst, Heart Disease And Obesity

Surprise! Everything You've Been Told About Salt Is Wrong
Photo © Sebastian – fotolia.com

It is typically thought that eating foods with a high amount of salt could lead to increased thirst. [1] This bartender notion may be true in the short term, but over a longer period, a high-salt diet actually diminishes thirst while increasing hunger, according to two papers reported in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. [2]

The two studies involved a team of researchers from German Aerospace Center, the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC), and Vanderbilt University. For the first study, which was carried out between 2009 and 2011, they used Russian cosmonauts who were part of a human space flight simulation program. The subjects were required to collect and measure every crumb and every urine drop during a 105-day and 520-day stretches of a hermetically-sealed simulation spaceflight.

Health authorities have always suggested that a diet high in salt is typically associated with an increase in liquid intake. What the researchers observed have upended more than a century of conventional scientific wisdom on the body’’s response to high salt consumption. Their findings are outlined below:

•• The cosmonauts drank less water as their salt intake went up.

•• The subjects also peed more and had more sodium in their urine.

•• The urine of the subjects was more concentrated, which means their body was holding onto more water.

The researchers conducted a subsequent study in mice to understand the surprising results they derived from the human study. They gained more information on the effect of high salt intake into the body:

• More salt leads to a state driven by glucocorticoids, which breaks down protein and converts it to urea.

•• Urea prevents body water loss while the salt is excreted from the body.

•• The body “cannibalizes” itself to produce more water, a process that makes a person hungry.

•• Increased levels of glucocorticoids are a risk factor for obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. [3][4][5]

According to the studies’ senior author Dr. Jens Titze of Vanderbilt University, their investigation presented evidence on why people need to radically reduce their salt consumption. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Sodium and Dietary Guidelines recommend Americans to consume less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day. [6] Americans’ penchant for processed foods and restaurant meals is exposing them to higher sodium intake. [7]

Dr. Titze believes that their findings might offer new page into the epidemics of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. She stresses that their trials offered a new dynamic on how reduced sodium diets could influence the three diseases in unexpected ways. [8]

The two studies also revised the scientific community’s view of the function of urea in our bodies. Titze and colleagues presented urea as not merely a waste product but as a very important compound that binds water and helps transport it.

References:

[1] Katherine K. Rice and Curt P. Richer. August 1, 1943. Endocrinology. Increased sodium chloride and water intake of normal rats treated with desoxycorticosterone acetate1. https://doi.org/10.1210/endo-33-2-106

[2] Rakova N et al. 2017. Increased salt consumption induces body water conservation and decreases fluid intake. http://www.nephjc.com/news/2017/5/31/spookysodium

[3] Smart JL et al. February 1, 2006. The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Glucocorticoids exacerbate obesity and insulin resistance in neuron-specific proopiomelanocortin-deficient mice. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1350998/

[4] Vondra K and Hampl R. May 2006. Glucocorticoids and diabetes mellitus. http://europepmc.org/abstract/med/16771098

[5] Walker BR. November 2007. European Journal of Endocrinology. Glucocorticoids and cardiovascular disease. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17984234

[6] U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most Americans Should Consume Less Sodium. https://www.cdc.gov/salt/index.htm

[7] Mandy Oaklander. May 21, 2015. 61% of Your Calories Are From Highly Processed Food: Study. http://time.com/3888102/processed-food-sugar-fat/

[8] Nishida C et al. 2004. Public Health Nutrition. The Joint WHO/FAO Expert Consultation on diet, nutrition and the prevention of chronic diseases: process, product and policy implications. http://cdrwww.who.int/nutrition/publications/public_health_nut9.pdf

This Is Why Magnesium Is The Most Powerful Relaxation Mineral Known To Man

This Is Why Magnesium Is The Most Powerful Relaxation Mineral Known To Man
background image – geralt – pixabay.com Periodic table – Clker-Free-Vector-Images – pixabay.com

Magnesium may not be as often highlighted as other minerals like calcium, sodium, and potassium, but it is still one of the most important minerals for human health. The medical community considers magnesium as “the relaxation mineral” – which your cells need to produce energy, to stabilize membranes, and to help relax muscles. [1]

Magnesium is actually involved in over 300 biochemical functions in the body. Deficiency of this mineral could cause muscle aches or spasms, poor digestion, anxiety, and sleep deprival. [2][3][4] Yet, magnesium deficiency remains overlooked and is not always tested for during blood tests.

•Lack Of Magnesium Could Be Causing These Diseases:

A study published in The Journal of Intensive Care Medicine links low levels of magnesium with a surprising list of symptoms and diseases which could be addressed by upping your intake of the crucial mineral. [5] Some of them are outlined below:

•• Diabetes
•• Asthma
•• Fibromyalgia
•• High blood pressure
•• Headaches
•• Migraines
•• Obesity
•• Osteoporosis
•• Kidney stones
•• Irritable bowel syndrome
•• Impotence
•• Kidney and liver damage

Many common food items are rich in magnesium including green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Unfortunately, many people do not consume enough magnesium due to their highly-processed, refined diet that is based mostly on white flour, meat, and dairy – which have no significant magnesium. Such lifestyle choices are also risk factors, as magnesium levels are reduced by excess alcohol, salt, coffee, and sodas. High rates of prescription medication and antibiotic use may also prevent your body to absorb magnesium.

•How Much Magnesium Do You Need?

According to the National Institutes of Health, there are current recommended daily allowances for magnesium depending on your age and gender: [6]

•• Infants to 6 months: 30 milligrams
•• 7 to 12 months: 75 milligrams
•• 1 to 3 years: 80 milligrams
•• 4 to 8 years: 130 milligrams
•• 9 to 13 years: 240 milligrams
•• 14 to 18 years: 410 milligrams for men; 360 milligrams for women
•• 19 to 30 years: 400 milligrams for men; 310 milligrams for women
•• Adults 31 years and older: 420 milligrams for men; 320 milligrams for women
•• Pregnant women: 350–-360 milligrams
•• Women who are breastfeeding: 310–-320 milligrams

Taking supplements is not the only way to increase your body’s magnesium level. You can add to your diet the following fruits and vegetables that are rich in magnesium:

•• Avocado
•• Almonds
•• Brown rice
•• Beans
•• Cashews
•• Dates
•• Figs
•• Garlic
•• Soy beans
•• Shrimps
•• Tofu
•• Walnuts
•• Parsley
•• Millet

Getting enough magnesium offers many other health benefits that are backed by modern scientific research:

•Improves Heart Health:

According to a 1996 study, magnesium is crucial in maintaining stable cardiovascular hemodynamics on a biochemical and cellular level in cardiac cells. The study highlights the importance of adequate total-body magnesium as a prognostic indicator in patients with congestive heart failure. [7]

•Supports Healthy Bones:

The Journal of International Medical Research published a study on the association between a diet low in magnesium and lower than normal bone density. [8] Other studies have confirmed that higher intake of magnesium is good for preventing osteoporosis. [9]

•Fights Depression:

The link between magnesium supplements and treatment of depression has been explored by several studies. A 2006 study supports this connection, revealing the effectiveness of magnesium therapy in addressing major depression caused by magnesium deficits. [10]

•Reduces Frequency Of Migraines:

A 2012 research stresses the value of oral magnesium for all migraine sufferers. It highlights the prevalence of magnesium deficiency in migraine sufferers than healthy patients. [11]

•Boosts Exercise Performance:

One study used magnesium supplementation for a month to determine if it would have a positive effect on the performance of triathletes. The athletes registered faster running, cycling, and swimming times and experienced reductions in insulin and stress hormone levels. [12]

•Prevents Type-2 Diabetes:

In 2003, a study recruited diabetics to investigate if high doses of magnesium each day would improve their blood sugar levels. The results were positive, improving insulin sensitivity and metabolic control in patients with type 2 diabetes. [13]

•Lowers Blood Pressure:

Magnesium could help lower blood pressure, based on several studies. One study observed a significant decrease in blood pressure after diabetic patients took 450 mg of magnesium supplement. [14]

Further Reading:

Magnesium -– The Missing Link To Better Health

Important Facts About Magnesium And Your Health

How To Make Your Own Magnesium Oil To Improve Sleep And Reduce Stress

References:

[1] Gourgoulianis KI, 2001. Journal of Aerosol Medicine. Magnesium as a relaxing factor of airway smooth muscles. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11693841

[2] Dr. Emily Deans. June 12, 2011. Psychology Today. Magnesium and the Brain: The Original Chill Pill. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolutionary-psychiatry/201106/magnesium-and-the-brain-the-original-chill-pill

[3] Swaminathan R. May 2003. The Clinical Biochemist Reviews. Magnesium Metabolism and its Disorders. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1855626/

[4] Abbasi B et al. December 2012. Journal of Research in Medical Sciences. The effect of magnesium supplementation on primary insomnia in elderly: A double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23853635

[5] Garrison M. Tong and Robert K. Rude. January 1, 2005. Journal of Intensive Care Medicine. Magnesium Deficiency in Critical Illness. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0885066604271539

[6] U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. National Institutes of Health. Office of Dietary Supplements. Magnesium: Fact Sheet for Consumers. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-Consumer/

[7] Douban S et al. September 1996. American Heart Journal. Significance of magnesium in congestive heart failure. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8800040

[8] Mutlu M et al. September 1, 2007. Magnesium, Zinc and Copper Status in Osteoporotic, Osteopenic and Normal Post-menopausal Women. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/147323000703500514

[9] Castiglioni et al. August 2013. Nutrients. Magnesium and Osteoporosis: Current State of Knowledge and Future Research Directions. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3775240/

[10] George A. Eby and Karen L. Eby. 2006. Medical Hypotheses. Rapid recovery from major depression using magnesium treatment. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306987706001034

[11] Mauskop A and Varughese J. May 2012. Journal of Neutral Transmission. Why all migraine patients should be treated with magnesium. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22426836

[12] Golf SW et al. September 1998. Cardiovascular Drugs and Therapy. On the significance of magnesium in extreme physical stress. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9794094

[13] Rodríguez-Morán M and Guerrero-Romero F. April 2003. Diabetes Care. Oral magnesium supplementation improves insulin sensitivity and metabolic control in type 2 diabetic subjects: a randomized double-blind controlled trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12663588

[14] Guerrero-Romero F, Rodríguez-Morán M. April 2009. Journal of Human Hypertension. The effect of lowering blood pressure by magnesium supplementation in diabetic hypertensive adults with low serum magnesium levels: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19020533

Study Finds Stevia Kills Lyme Disease Pathogen Better Than Antibiotics

Study Finds Stevia Kills Lyme Disease Pathogen Better Than Antibiotics
Photo 1 © Daniele Depascale – fotolia.com Photo 2 © Flyingbikie – Wikipedia – lic. under CC0 1.0

Lyme disease is an infection caused by a type of bacteria called Borrelia burgdorferi, which may be transmitted through the bite of ticks. Once infected, a person begins to manifest with high fever, headache, malaise, and the characteristic bull’s eye rash. Complicated / chronic cases can blow up and spread to joints, the brain, and the heart. [1]

Most cases of Lyme disease are successfully treated with a course of antibiotics, but there are instances where the antibiotics fail to produce the desired outcome. This is mainly due to the infectious agent’s ability to morph into different forms capable of evading the action of the drugs. This can result in a condition called Post-treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome or in some health circles, it’s called Chronic Lyme Disease. [2] This is a painful and persistent condition that does not benefit from antibiotic treatment. In fact, research has shown that this form of Lyme disease does not respond well to prolonged and continued antibiotic use [3] and continued use may even lead to death. [4]

Given its grim reputation, there is a sense of urgency in the search for an effective treatment for Post-treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome. Fortunately, we are making progress and as always, Mother Nature keeps on providing: In a study published in the European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology, there is now strong evidence that suggests that Stevia, the natural sweetener, and sugar substitute, can be a potential treatment to Chronic Lyme Disease. In the study, researchers compared the effectiveness of Stevia with the conventional antibiotics used to treat the disease. Surprisingly, Stevia performed with flying colors. [5] More studies are needed before we’ll have a Stevia based treatment for Lyme disease but researchers are optimistic.

Further reading:

Stevia has slowly gained popularity over the years since it appealed to those looking for a non caloric substitute to artificial sweeteners. However, although touted as a safer alternative to the usual aspartame and acesulfame, it is not without faults: A recent study published in the International Journal of Obesity showed that Stevia had minimal effect on total caloric intake of a person [6] and can even enhance the uptake of glucose when taken with meals. [7] This, in turn, could possibly lead to unintentional hypoglycemia, which could be dangerous for diabetics.

Further reading:

These 11 Artificial Sweeteners Are The Ones To Avoid (And What You Should Use Instead).

References:

[1] Lyme Disease. https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/index.html

[2] Post-Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome. https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/postlds/

[3] Two Controlled Trials of Antibiotic Treatment in Patients with Persistent Symptoms and a History of Lyme Disease (2001). http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM200107123450202

[4] Death from Inappropriate Therapy for Lyme Disease (2000). https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/31/4/1107/374252/Death-from-Inappropriate-Therapy-for-Lyme-Disease

[5] Effectiveness of Stevia Rebaudiana Whole Leaf Extract Against the Various Morphological Forms of Borrelia Burgdorferi in Vitro. (2015). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26716015/

[6] Effects of aspartame-, monk fruit-, stevia- and sucrose-sweetened beverages on postprandial glucose, insulin and energy intake (2017). https://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v41/n3/full/ijo2016225a.html

[7] Hypoglycemic Effect of Aquatic Extract of Stevia in Pancreas of Diabetic Rats: PPARγ-dependent Regulation or Antioxidant Potential (2016). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27141265