Sarcopenia muscle loss with aging

Is it possible to maintain muscle strength and integrity through the duration of life? Sarcopenia may be against you. Can you battle against sarcopenia? Maybe. If not today, perhaps soon.

There’s an old Grimm fable that when living things asked God about longevity, God like the number 30 years.With a little negotiating, humans got 70 years but at a price. Sometimes these fairy tales are true. At age 30, lean muscle tissue decreases and is replaced by fat. This decrease is partly caused by a loss of muscle tissue (atrophy). The speed and amount of skeletal muscle changes seem to be caused by genes. This muscle loss happens very slowly yet gradually – usually noticed un 10 year differences. The process is Sarcopenia that, thus far, is an untestable condition.

Barring genetic diseases such as Muscular Dystrophy and DDNX3, sarcopenia is a normal process of aging. Body builders have been using a pseudo-genetic chemical called Myostatin, that some believe may help slow sarcopenia muscle loss with aging.

Myostatin (also known as growth differentiation factor 8, abbreviated GDF-8) is a myokine, a protein produced and released by myocytes that acts on muscle cells’ function to inhibit myogenesis: muscle cell growth and differentiation. In humans it is encoded by the MSTN gene. Myogenesis is a form of regeneration as the process by which damaged skeletal, smooth or cardiac muscle undergoes biological repair and formation of new muscle when other muscle fibers waste or die due to disease. This process may slow with aging and hormonal changes.

When discussing sarcopenia and myostatin, there are two sides of a coin. Muscle atrophy is a decrease in muscle mass; muscle hypertrophy is an increase in muscle mass due to an increase in muscle cell size. Hypertrophy is a very rare condition and sarcopenia is more associated with aging and conditions like muscular dystrophies. As a possible method at treating sarcopenia, myostatin inhibitors are being explored by doctors albeit at mouse level experiments.

The potential side effects of using myostatin inhibitors provoke heated debates in research communities. With few studies, there are some negative side effects reported:

One potential concern is that increased muscle growth will lead to an increased risk of injury due to increased stress on the muscle fibers. This is especially true for individuals using myostatin inhibitors as workout supplements instead of as part of a medical treatment for muscular dystrophy or other disorders.

Other possible side effects of myostatin inhibitors include increased the chance of tendon rupture, heart failure due to inflamed cardiac muscle, and rhabdomyolysis, a breakdown of muscle fibers that often leads to kidney failure

Despite few thorough clinical trials, Myostatin has become a main target for the development of drugs for cachexia and muscle wasting diseases. While sarcopenia behaves at wasting skeletal muscles, The cachectic state is observed in many pathological conditions such as cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), sepsis, or chronic heart failure. These are also muscles. The other problem associated with Myostatin is it is not targeted for research by the US Food and Drug Administration for testing and approval. It is available as a supplement.

In the United Kingdom, use of a myostatin inhibitor is targeted for experimentation for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, one of many muscular dystrophy diseases.

While muscle wasting is associated with muscular dystrophies and other emerging genetic conditions, including sarcopenia, there is no certainty whether myostatin might reverse muscle wasting that has already happened. Among small and possibly skewed studies it is generally accepted that age-related changes in skeletal muscle structure and function are inevitable, whether these deleterious effects on skeletal muscle can be stopped or reversed is debatable.Some studies support myostatin inhibitor supplementation, most studies agree that more research is needed. In 2017, a reasonably thorough German study of myostatin inhibitors as treatment for muscle wasting concluded with interest but for further experimentation required.

The general wisdom is that muscle integrity within normal sarcopenia is activity – virtually any activity – may reduce muscle wasting over time. Activity may also benefit hippocampus growth for cognitive support. Unused muscles can waste away if you are not active. Even after it begins, this type of atrophy can often be reversed with exercise and improved nutrition. Muscle atrophy can also happen if you are bedridden or unable to move certain body parts due to a medical condition.

Muscle wasting with age varies but sarcopenia may not be considered a leading cause of death in aging. There are some foods that include flavonoids that dietitians believe may work as myostatin inhibitors. They are: green tea, chocolate (especially dark chocolate and raw cocoa powder),
blackberries, pomegranates, and broad beans, broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach.

There are genetic tests to evaluate your myostatin levels. Discuss with your doctor to determine whether you need one.

Aging well seems to many a fantasy as new diseases and conditions creep in unrelenting succession. Living is an activity. Damned genetic muscle wasting diseases may one day be curbed. Will it be myostatin related? There seem to be many promises but all we can do is wait. Might as well go for a walk while waiting. Wisdom points that activity may be helpful. Sarcopenia and many other neuromuscular disease treatments is definitely worth researching as the aging population increases.

As you battle with the bulges and size upgrades as you grow older, sarcopenia might be the cause behind the results.

Holy mackerel

Tuna, salmon, sardines have been popular sandwich-stuffers and salad toppers for decades. Shifted to the side, virtually ignored, was another fish – mackerel. Holy mackerel! Why?

Mackerel is the common name for members of the family Scombridae, which includes many species of open-sea fishes, including the bonito and tuna. Mackerel is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids; some varieties have a stronger, oilier flavor than other fish, as saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fat from about 5 grams per 3-ounce serving.

Mackerels are pelagic fish. Examples of species include forage fish such as anchovies, sardines, shad, and menhaden and the predatory fish that feed on them. Oceanic pelagic fish typically inhabit waters below the continental shelf. Pelagic fishes are those that spend much of their lives swimming in open water away from the bottom. These areas are highly productive and supply nutrients for the growth of plankton which forms the food for the smaller pelagic species. A mackerel is typically less than 2 feet in length. Fourteen-inch fish weigh about 1 pound in the spring and about 1¼ pounds in the fall when they are fat; 18-inch fish weigh about 2 to 2½ pounds; a 22-inch mackerel will likely weigh 4 pounds. Examples of pelagic fish include larger fish such as swordfish, tuna, mackerel, and even sharks. Of these, the mackerel is the smallest. They are found in the Atlantic and Pacific ocean regions.

Typically, a mackerel has fins, gills, and they are considered kosher. Popular kosher fish are bass, carp, cod, flounder, halibut, herring, sardines, mackerel, trout and salmon.

Mackerel is an oily fish, a rich source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. The flesh of mackerel spoils quickly, especially in the tropics, and can cause scombroid, a type of food poisoning. Mackerel should be eaten on the day of capture, unless properly refrigerated or cured. Mackerel preservation is not simple. In the USA, you can find canned and smoked mackerel that’s perfectly safe. While salmon and tuna are caught in colder climates, they are also vulnerable to the bacteria that may result in food poisoning. So why is mackerel segregated from other canned fish products?

A serving 3 ounces of cooked Boston mackerel contains 1.1 grams of omega-3 fatty acids. Like tuna, mackerel is also an important source of protein and B vitamins, particularly vitamin B12. A 3-ounce serving provides nearly 700 percent of the recommended daily amount of the vitamin. Canned mackerel provides comparable nutritional values.

It should be noted that (if you are monitoring cholesterol) there is about 79.0 mg amount of Cholesterol in 100 grams (3-ounces) portion amount of Fish, mackerel, canned food, drained solids. It is similar to salmon, a little bit more than tuna, or sardines. Although fish will not help to lower cholesterol, it has lots of benefits for your heart. Omega-3 fats, which are found in oil-rich fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, herring and sardines, are very beneficial for your heart. It is also believed that eating fatty fish several times per week may help increase HDL cholesterol levels (good cholesterol). These fish may also reduce triglycerides.

Oily fish such as salmon, mackerel and sardines are said to help against cardiovascular disease, prostate cancer, age-related vision loss and dementia. It’s a good source of vitamin D, protein, some B vitamins and selenium. It’s also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, a type of fat that is good for health and digestion. Why do few restaurants serve Mackerel in the USA?

Among the two-dozen species of Mackerel found around the world, some have a fishy odor. People in many Asian countries may like it. People in European and USA consider that type of mackerel as a pet food ingredient. In the USA, mackerel tastes like a cross between Hake and Swai and is part of normal diets, as a mild tasting fish. Atlantic mackerel or jack mackerel are popular and safe in the USA. Jack mackerel is sourced from the Pacific, along the California coast. Jack mackerel usually is sold canned.

Most people hate to eat mackerel because they don’t know how to cook them. Broil or bake the mackerel (remove fat from the flesh, don’t add more fat/oil). Some people like to bake them with a little anchovy paste/butter – try it. Bar-b-queued mackerel is fairly good and smoked mackerel is even better. But no, it will never be the same as eating halibut but halibut often sells at 3-4 times the price as mackerel.

Mackerel may be pan fried if placed on a grill. For example:

Heat a roasting pan with rack in the oven at around 400 degrees.
Clean the fish, pad dry, and covered it in olive oil, salt, and pepper. …
Stuff slices of lemon into the cavity.
Place the fish on the hot rack.
Cook for about 20 minutes on each side, or until they are crispy.

Compared to salmon, mackerel may have a fishier taste. Yet…there are many mackerel recipes available.

Mackerel is a relatively inexpensive fish. Fresh Mackerel often sells for less than $5.00 per pound. Canned mackerel sells for about $2.00 per 15-ounce can. As such, more people can access mackerel and its nutrients in a healthy diet, as salads, fish cakes, and stews.

Why is mackerel so holy? Many agree that the phrase is a euphemism for Holy Mary. Blurting “Holy Mackerel” instead of taking the Madonna’s name in vain. Holy mackerel is phrase having no direct relationship to the fish? Originally, Catholics were told to have fish on Fridays. Mackerel were relatively easy to catch and, thus, became very popular Friday foods.

Mackerel is a big, oily fish, similar to tuna, but it has lower levels of mercury per serving, and is less at risk of overfishing. It’s high in both omega-3 and -6 fatty acids and a good source of protein, and has been found to lower blood pressure in men. Pregnant? King mackerel contains too much mercury to be considered safe during pregnancy.

USA Government dietary guidelines recommend that people eat fish twice a week. It offers significant protein and nutrients, and we know that fish are full of omega-3 fatty acids—which can benefit both heart and brain. While most use 3 ounces as a serving, a portion is around 140g (4.9oz). Compared to tuna and wild salmon, mackerel has lower Mercury levels.

Just as you would make tuna, salmon, shrimp or sardine salad sandwiches, mackerel may be another alternative. Mash it with dressing, onions, shredded carrots, and diced celery, I doubt any eater would know the difference.

There really isn’t anything holy about mackerel. It is a reasonable, inexpensive, and healthy alternative to tuna, salmon, and sardines. These days, when budgets seem tight, mackerel is a great, cheap addition for you and your family to get the nutrition and protein they need.

Hardcore exercise destroys your kidneys

19th-century writer and speaker, Edward Brooks is quoted as saying in 1882 The desire of activity is designed by nature to promote our physical well-being. Physical activity is the law of physical health. But how much exercise is necessary? Well…many centuries earlier Socrates wrote Moderate exercise is indispensable; exercise till the mind feels delight in reposing from the fatigue. Yet, in this heyday run-quick, digital world. people want quick results and shift from still to hardcore exercise. Hardcore exercise may be toxic to your health.

Almost any health condition may be helped by activity and diet. When it comes to controlling activity levels, mind over body usually is a losing battle. The rage of hardcore exercise to lose weight, control cholesterol, or bring down hyperactivity is popular in a competitive society seeking speedy results. We tend to shift into hardcore modes instead of regulating our habits over time. Hardcore exercise not only causes physical pain but may also result in kidney failure. Can you learn to moderate your hardcore exercise regimen?

For many, the very thought of exercise is profane. Exercise is a dirty word. Every time I hear it, I wash my mouth out with chocolate. Yet, the inevitable results are weight gain, loss of muscle plasticity, and diabetes. The answer isn’t a hardcore exercise regimen. For most people, it can result with serious health issues.

The goal of exercising to active extremes follows the “No Pain No Gain” approach. But exercise mavens caution moderation. Don’t practice for a marathon or a great body if you don’t realize stamina and endurance must teach your metabolism that activity is normal. Exercising too much to feel muscular pain may deliver reverse results and also damage your kidneys. Rhabdomyolysis is a condition dealing with muscle breakdown that releases the enzyme myoglobin—along with creatine kinase—into the bloodstream. The result, over a long term, may be severe kidney impairment.

Now as hardcore exercise may result in degrees of kidney problems, treating Rhabdomyolysis equally requires certain avenues. It usually does not require hospitalization. The goals of at-home treatment include resting the body so muscles can recover and hydration to help prevent further kidney damage. When you’re feeling fatigued, recline in a comfortable position and try to relax. Essentially hardcore exercise is nixed.

How do you know if you are at risk? Do your muscles ache for longer than usual? Diagnosing Rhabdomyolosis requires a doctor of sports medicine that is experienced with hardcore exercise issues. It requires a blood test.

Hardcore exercise isn’t the only cause. Rhabdomyolysis may occur as a result of several conditions that disrupt body balance.

Trauma or crush injuries
Use of drugs such as cocaine, amphetamines, statins, heroin, or PCP
Genetic muscle diseases
Extremes of body temperature
Ischemia or death of muscle tissue
Low phosphate levels
Seizures or muscle tremors
Severe exertion, such as marathon running or calisthenics
Lengthy surgical procedures
Severe dehydration

Fundamentally, many conditions taken to a chronic level may cause Rhabdomyolosis to emerge. The issue is how long and pain severity. If you wait for dark urine then it’s likely you are damaging kidney function. Some pharmaceutical medications may also result in hormonal harm. A popular class are Statins, used to control cholesterol and blood lipid levels.

The hardcore exercise adage of “No Pain, No Gain”, us something that newly active people must take lightly. The ceiling of pain is relatively low, even if not felt during exercise itself. Yet, hours later your muscles stiffen and you feel immobilizing pain. Yes, you will add muscle tone when you recover but the cost may crmp your lifestyle by causing un-needed trauma.

By being inactive over most of your lifetime, hardcore exercise is relatively dangerous. Appropriate exercises may actually be positively therapeutic.

I have myotonic dystrophy, a genetic disease that results in muscle loss and immobility. Prior to symptom onset I was very active. In my condition, if I exercise to pain, I accelerate muscle loss. Moderation is a tough lesson. With no cure and no treatment, exercise is low impact and brief. Myotonic dystrophy, one of many muscular dystrophy diseases, makes one conscious that those who begin hardcore exercise without professional training, may cause severe muscle trauma. The idea is not to over-exercise. The secret is learning endurance when exercising.

While there are many people that market hardcore exercise for, let’s say, cardiovascular strength, improper training may result in heart, kidney, and other hormonal failures. It can result in physical and emotional pain.

The burden of hardcore exercise is that no one will ever attain or keep the perfect body appearance. Genetics, age, diet, and other conditions will interfere. Establishing and developing active body habits over a lifestyle will be less traumatic to your kidneys and other vital organs. Hardcore exercise may seem sensible. Yet, it can make you sick. Exercise for health.

Unfortunately, I can’t do these anymore. But you can benefit from these low-impact routines. Don’t do more than you can. Exercise and diet are the keys to finding strength and energy without provoking disease. Hardcore exercise benefits the precious few. You are aiming for the healthier roads.

Socrates also wrote, All things in moderation, including moderation.. It is wise. Not everyone could appear as an Amazon goddess or an Athenian god. Hardcore exercise may cause kidney failure. Your body wants balance and will rebel if you push it too hard.

USDA MyPlate Pyramid diet plan

Are you eating right or wrong? Are you eating what you need for proper nutrition? The Unites States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a food pyramid that helps you make choices. Is it helpful? There are supporters and critics. Let’s study the USDA food pyramid and their more recent MyPlate plan.

The USDA Pyramid, developed in 1992, emphasized eating more vegetables and fruits, less meat, salt, sugary foods, bad fat, and additive-rich factory foods. There has been quite a but if research in nutrition and dietary plans since then. Also, obesity, diet-based diabetes and other health issues arose since then. No-fat diets were proven as a suspicious way to diet. In 2015, the USDA revised the pyramid approach with Choose MyPlate. The new guidelines add whole grains and varied protein sources as the correct diets for Americans to eat from 2015 to 2020:

MyPlate plan is designed to help you eat food from the 5 basic food groups
Vegetables and legumes/beans.
Fruit.
Grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fibre varieties.
Lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans.
Milk, yogurt cheese and/or alternatives, mostly reduced fat.

Make half your plate fruits and vegetables. Focus on whole fruits. Vary your veggies.
Make half your grains whole grains.
Move to low-fat and fat-free dairy.
Vary your protein routine.
Eat and drink the right amount for you.

Yet, the food pyramid has been around for so long. The abstract notions of the food pyramid seemed biblical but difficult to follow with reason.

The USDA food pyramid was a widely recognized nutrition education tool that translated nutritional recommendations into the kinds and amounts of food to eat each day. The Pyramid is based on USDA’s research on what foods Americans eat, nutrition, and quantity. While the USDA food pyramid has been fine all these years, the USDA updated the program to What’s On My Plate for the present and future.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) created MyPlate, an easy-to-follow food guide, to help parents to figure out how to feed their kids nutritious, balanced meals. The colorful divided plate includes sections for vegetables, fruits, grains, and foods high in protein. MyPlate helps you eat on the basis of a 1600 calorie diet plan, while maintaining fullness from one meal to another. Using MyPlate approaches, variance is the key to help make meals interesting. Besides, kids (and adults) are picky (and irresponsible) consumers of food.

The USDA targets the USA diet and the bluegrass roots for outlining good meals as the core of the healthy USA eating lifestyle. It isn’t about starving. It’s about diversifying the food groups and understanding what constitutes a serving. Does this mean that those 16-ounce sirloin steaks are gone? Well….not as a habit. The My Plate theme is habit of most meals. USDA Choose MyPlate seems to make more sense than the Pyramid but is it realistic?

The Choose My Plate method helps organize meals according to the USDA dietary guidelines for basic health. It’s a more focused approach, especially if you eat at home.

While the Cover MyPlate food choices don’t account for cakes, cookies, and fried snacks, the USDA makes sure that people – young and old – can access the wholesome nutrition these meals provide. USDA Cover MyPlate meals are distributed to schools, summer camps, seniors, and depressed areas.

The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) works to improve the health of low-income elderly persons at least 60 years of age by supplementing their diets with nutritious USDA Foods. These include hot breakfasts and lunches at day senior centers and food distribution directly to elderly with severe mobility problems. The latter usually requires registering with a neighborhood senior program for direct distribution to your door.

Since the 1960’s, under President Lyndon Baines Johnson, USA made a pledge that no USA resident should ever go hungry. While there are many fancy diets available these days targeting weight and health management, the USDA helps overwhelmingly (often incognito) to aid healthy food to the needy of the USA.

While Cover MyPlate may not include many of the advertised and marketed food and serving sizes, over the past decade nutrition has been partnering with medicine. From US Dietary Guidelines to scientific nutrition research, nutrition brings many important factors for health management and wellness.

Yet, most physicians were poorly trained in nutrition. Few medical schools offered more than 25 hours of nutrition studies. Many…zero.

Nutrition has also been associated with moods, including depression and anxiety disorders.

While the USDA MyPlate Pyramid diet plan may be basic and not exactly mouth watering, MyPlate helps provide nutrition through food to many needy individuals. While research hasn’t been vast enough to support MyPlate as an overall route to health and longevity, it’s a basis for all to begin eating healthier. Smoking, alcohol, and richer foods might be confounding variables in any study. Then there are genetic and activity issues – many undiscovered.

USDA MyPlate is a budget minded entrance to getting healthy nutrition directly from small servings of whole foods. The USDA offers many resources to help you choose whether MyPlate is suitable for you. They also provide a list of informative videos.

Click this link for a sample of a 2-week MyPlate meal example.

The USDA MyPlate diet plan wasn’t intended to help everyone reduce obesity. MyPlate was designed to provide healthy nutrition to the young, old, poor and devastated. Yet, for those seeking a healthier lifestyle, choosing a USDA MyPlate flexible diet plan may be one benefit to help bring your health to normal levels.

With USDA MyPlate plan dieting isn’t a matter of right or wrong. Like anything of value, it’s a lifestyle choice.

Estrogen dominance and balance

Hormones are chemicals manufactured by your body organs and cells. Raging hormones excite children and teens through the adventures to young adults. Declining hormones are found among those over 50, with a few at 35. Estrogen dominance becomes an issue when ovulating stops. At that point, progesterone – an associative hormone – level drops. There are numerous emotional and physical consequences with hormonal balance. It is not just women, hormone balance also affects men. Aging people can still have wonderful living opportunities. How do you keep hormones balanced?

There is life. There is living. Life is a solid state of being, like a cell. Living is a complex network of interactions that require sophistication and control. Among the many are a group of bio-tropic chemicals produced by glands that naturally occur and are essentials parts within our bodies. A dysfunction of one or more glands (by inheritance, environment, lifestyle, development) poses threats to delicate balances that living requires. Estrogen is a human hormone that exists in women and in men. Estrogen dominance, as part of aging, is a developing process that has taken scientists and people’s attention as the population life expectancy gets longer. Some of those new conditions that seem to crop-up after age 50 may actually be dependent in the levels of hormones, such as estrogen, progesterone, and several others.

There are many hormones throughout the body that act as regulators to maintain balance. Certain key hormones are monitored in blood tests taken at a routine medical exam. Each has a normal range, plus high or low. Beyond normal, a form of dominance shows up defining special conditions. Under variances, two specific hormones – estrogen and progesterone – change levels dramatically as women age. This process was recently identified with aging men. Neurotransmitters, endorphins, epinephrines, are also among hormones that vary with age. Estrogen dominance, excessive estrogen hormone, may lie as a key to many complaints through our aging bodies.

There are about 50 known hormones in your body as part of network that stimulate and inhibit hormone production.

In many senses, living makes use of a vast array of chemicals that may help make living possible – living better or worse. The next few pages list these hormones, although our discussion focuses on estrogen dominance and associations with aging:

Melatonin – Think of melatonin as your biological clock. This hormone is responsible for the way you feel throughout the day as far as alertness is concerned. All those drowsy feelings? Blame the melatonin.

Serotonin – This is the one you can blame for PMS and your moody teenager. Serotonin controls your mood, appetite, and your sleep cycles.

Thyroxin – A form of thyroid hormone, thyroxin increases the rate of your metabolism and also affects protein synthesis, which is the process that cells go through to build protein.

Epinephrine – This is one that you have most likely heard of; it’s also called adrenaline. Among a whole list of other things, epinephrine is responsible for what is known as the, “fight or flight” response. This is the hormone that tells you when to fight and when it’s best to run. Some of the bodily responses demonstrated when this hormone kicks in are dilated pupils, increased heart rate, and tensing of the muscles.

Norepinephrine – Also called noradrenaline, this hormone controls the heart and blood pressure. Norepinephrine also contributes to the control of sleep, arousal, and emotions. Obvious effects take place when there is too much or too little of this hormone. Too much gives you an anxious feeling while too little can leave you feeling depressed or sedated.

Dopamine – This controls the heart rate and also assists in perception; deciphering what is real and what is not.

Antimullerian Hormone – An inhibitor for the release of prolactin, the protein responsible mainly for lactation.

Adiponectin – This is a protein hormone, it regulates metabolic processes such as the regulation of glucose.

Adrenocorticotropic Hormone – This assists in synthesizing corticosteroids, which are responsible for stress response, blood electrolyte levels, and other physiologic systems.

Angiotensinogen – Responsible for the narrowing of blood vessels; a process known as vasoconstriction.

Antidiuretic Hormone – This hormone is also known by other names, but it is mainly responsible for retaining water within the kidneys.

Atrial Natriuretic Peptide – A peptide hormone secreted by the cells of the heart and other muscles, it’s mostly involved with the control of water, sodium, potassium, and fat within the body.

Calcitonin – Aids in constructing bone and reducing blood calcium.

Cholecystokinin – Aids in the release of digestive enzymes for the pancreas and acts as an appetite suppressant.

Corticotrophin-Releasing Hormone – Releases cortisol in response to stress.

Erythropoietin – Stimulates the production of erythrocytes, which are blood cells responsible for delivering oxygen.

Follicle-Stimulating Hormone – Stimulates the follicles within the sex organs of both males and females.

Gastrin – Secretes gastric acid.

Ghrelin – Hunger stimulant as well as aiding in the secretion of the growth hormone.

Glucagon – Helps to increase the blood glucose level.

Growth Hormone-Releasing Hormone – As its name clearly implies, this hormone releases the growth hormone.

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin – Keeps the immune system from attacking a forming embryo during pregnancy.

Growth Hormone – Helps to stimulate growth and the reproduction of cells.

Insulin – Responsible for several anabolic effects, primarily glucose intake.

Insulin-Like Growth Factor – Has the same effects as insulin while also regulating the growth and development of cells.

Leptin – Slows down the appetite while simultaneously speeding up metabolism.

Luteinizing Hormone – Aids ovulation in women and testosterone production in men.

Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone – Produce melanocytes, which are responsible for the pigment in skin and hair.

Orexin – Increases the appetite while also increasing your alertness and energy levels.

Oxytocin – A hormone that plays a major role in reproduction, it aids in orgasm and is also responsible for the release of breast milk.

Parathyroid Hormone – Among other functions, this hormone is mainly responsible for the activation of Vitamin D.

Prolactin – A major contributor in sexual satisfaction and the production of breast milk.

Secretin – Inhibits gastric acid production.

Aldosterone – Mainly responsible for absorbing sodium in the kidneys to increase the volume of blood within the body.

Testosterone – The major male hormone, testosterone is responsible for sex drive, development of the sex organs, and the changes that take place during puberty.

Androstenedione – Essentially estrogen.

Estradiol – In males, this hormone is responsible for preventing what is basically known as cell death of the germ cells. In females, this hormone is in overdrive. Among other things, estradiol accelerates height and metabolism, maintains the blood vessels and skin, aids in water retention, and even aids in hormone-sensitive cancers.

Progesterone – A major contributor to the body’s support of pregnancy.

Lipotropin – Stimulates the production of pigment by aiding in melanin production.

Brain natriuretic peptide – Aids in reducing blood pressure.

Histamine – A hormone based in the stomach, histamine aids in the secreting of gastric acid.

Endothelin – Controls muscle contractions within the stomach.

Enkephalin – Simply a pain regulator.

These are only examples of some of the 600 known hormones within the body; there are more complex hormones whose functions are not easily understood.

As people age, they often see their bodies change. Whether they eat responsibly and, regardless of activity, fat seems to accumulate and energy seems to drop. In a sense, it is your body’s way of alerting a possible imbalance as part of homeostasis. It’s a hormonal imbalance that comes at menopause. While estrogen may increase in women, progesterone levels may drop up to 70%.

In men and pre-menopausal women, too much estrogen — a condition called estrogen dominance — causes toxic fat gain, water retention, bloating, and a host of other health and wellness issues. As women age, there is a natural decline in testosterone and progesterone levels, leaving a relative excess of estrogen. This imbalance, this excess ratio of estrogen to progesterone makes dieting seem impossible as your sizes increase. The distribution of fat in women goes from young appearances to matronly, from a little overweight to obese. While genes may be involved, estrogen dominance over decreasing levels of progesterone may make normal dieting regimens impractical. Some might say estrogen is confusing because it is an essential
hormone.

According to Dr. Christiane Northrup, the symptoms of estrogen dominance as women enter menopause are varied – from mild to severe. They may be:

Decreased sex drive
Irregular or otherwise abnormal menstrual periods
Bloating (water retention)
Breast swelling and tenderness
Fibrocystic breasts
Headaches (especially premenstrually)
Mood swings (most often irritability and depression)
Weight and/or fat gain (particularly around the abdomen and hips)
Cold hands and feet (a symptom of thyroid dysfunction)
Hair loss
Thyroid dysfunction
Sluggish metabolism
Foggy thinking, memory loss
Fatigue
Trouble sleeping/insomnia
PMS

Symptoms of low progesterone for women who aren’t pregnant include:

headaches or migraines.
mood changes, including anxiety or depression.
low libido.
hot flashes.
irregular menstrual cycle.
weight gain.
fibroids, endometriosis.
thyroid dysfunction.

Another group of research studies seem to infer that estrogen dominance levels might lead to breast or uterine cancer. The overall problem of treating estrogen dominance in menopausal and post-menopausal women is that the pharmaceutical hormone replacement treatments demonstrated associative links to cancer. Admittedly, more recent studies seemed to infer that positive breast cancer diagnoses were false positives by around 30%.

Hormonal imbalances and aging aren’t just secluded for women. Men, in recent years, seem to also pass a menopause-like phase. It is called Andropause. Age-related decline in testosterone levels is also called testosterone deficiency, androgen decline in the aging male (ADAM) or late onset hypogonadism (LOH). Andropause is different from the menopause women experience. In menopause, the production of female hormone drops suddenly.Men may experience a more gradual loss.

According to Healthline, Male menopause can cause physical, sexual, and psychological problems. They typically worsen as you get older. They can include:

low energy
depression or sadness
decreased motivation
lowered self-confidence
difficulty concentrating
insomnia or difficulty sleeping
increased body fat
reduced muscle mass and feelings of physical weakness
gynecomastia, or development of breasts
decreased bone density
erectile dysfunction
reduced libido
infertility

It’s kind of neat that these symptoms are often diagnosed in response to individual complaints and treated as such. Yet, estrogen dominance and the changes of mood, energy, and blood changes with new alarming indicators may actually be a part of modulating estrogen dominance in your body.

One of the problems in dealing with estrogen dominance and other hormonal issues are treatments. While you may deal with each symptom as it appears, those treatments may still be counter-productive within the entire context of male and female menopause. It is suggested that frequent, routine treatments and testing be done with either a urologist or an OB/GYN. An estrogen test measures the level of the most important estrogen hormones in a blood or urine sample.

Generally, after menopause, once the menstrual cycle stops, the ovaries no longer produce progesterone. However, the body still needs progesterone and does continue producing it in the adrenal glands and nerve cells. Is it enough?

So…at a point to mediate estrogen during menopause, physicians began prescribing lab-produced estrogen – estradiol and Premarin. Premarin was produced by Pfizer. Responsibly, over the years, Pfizer has been adding cautions on Premarin, this drug designed to only reduce hot flashes gave many women causes of concern:

Using estrogen-alone may increase your chance of getting cancer of the uterus (womb). Report any unusual vaginal bleeding right away while you are using PREMARIN. Vaginal bleeding after menopause may be a warning sign of cancer of the uterus (womb). Your healthcare provider should check any unusual vaginal bleeding to find out the cause.

Do not use estrogens with or without progestins to prevent heart disease, heart attacks, strokes or dementia (decline in brain function).

Using estrogen-alone may increase your chances of getting strokes or blood clots. Using estrogens with progestins may increase your chances of getting heart attacks, strokes, breast cancer, or blood clots.

According to Healthline, sponsored by the USA government, using Premarin may help develop some common side effects that might include:
abdominal pain
breast changes and pain
back pain
depression or mood changes
dizziness
dry mouth
headaches
high blood pressure
increased heart rate
insomnia
stomach upset
vaginal discharge

Taking Premarin may cause these additional common side effects:
hair loss
skin rashes
double vision
partial or complete vision loss
Risks and interactions

Use of either estradiol or Premarin may also increase your risk of:
blood clots
breast cancer
cardiovascular disease
dementia
endometrial cancer
stroke
uterine cancer

But at postmenopausal years, when hot flashes subside, and the symptoms of estrogen dominance prevail, you wonder how to increase progesterone. Prometrium is another prescription drug for that. That sounded great when it was introduced over a decade ago. Are there side effects?

Common Side Effects of Progesterone
Headache
Painful or tender breasts
Stomach pain
Dizziness
Depression
Greater risk for viral infections
Serious Side Effects of Progesterone
Dementia in post-menopausal women who are more than 65 years of age
Vomiting
Swelling in the feet, ankles, and lower legs
Blood clots
Heart attack, stroke, or blood clots in the lungs
Missed periods or breakthrough bleeding
Breast cancer (most common in women between ages 50 and 79)
Rare Side Effects of Progesterone
Some patients may notice mood swings and feel tired or nauseated while taking progesterone.

Progesterone Interactions – If you are taking any of the following, ask your doctor about other possible options before taking progesterone:

Cancer drugs like Gilotrif (afatinib), Zydelig (idelasalib), and Tafinlar (dabrafenib)
Adempas (riociguat)
HIV/AIDS medications like Stribild (eltivagravir/cobicistat/emtricitabine/tenofovir)
Afrezza (inhaled insulin)
Fanapt (iloperidone)
Kalydeco (ivacaftor)
Lysoderm (mitotane)

Of course many drugs have side effects because they tend to mimic our natural chemicals but are not specific clones. They do not interact fully in opening and closing the body’s many doors and windows well.

So…as with many articles on Lifedoc Lifetime, we discuss how acts of living – diet, activity, nutrition, and other natural ways might just help make living easier under an umbrella of wellness.

Perhaps one of the more predominant gripes of entering the mid-fifties may be noticeable size changes from Medium to Extra Large (or plus sizes) may be life and living threatening to many.

To achieve weight loss or to prevent weight gain during menopause, stay active and eat a healthy diet. If your lifestyle begins to change as you age, try to keep physical activity and portion control at the top of your priority list. Here estrogen dominance is not a clear issue. There may be dietary components along with reduction of activities that increase depression. So, though, estrogen dominance may not be present, certain foods may reduce estrogen’s role in your metabolic rate to use foods. Lack of estrogen may also cause the body to use starches and blood sugar less effectively, which would increase fat storage and make it harder to lose.

Weight loss diets of postmenopausal people are not really fat-dependent. The consensus of most physicians seems to negate low-fat diets with hormonal balance. Reducing sugars and starches and focusing on healthy fats may be a route to weight loss. Fat-free or reduced-fat foods are bad news for postmenopausal women for a few reasons. One, they keep you from eating the healthy fats your body needs to combat heart disease, which postmenopausal women may be at increased risk of due to a combination of , poor diet, and lack of exercise.

Part of the real culprit of weight gain in women is age and muscle loss. Women generally become less physically active as they pass through their 40s, 50s, and 60s. At any age, burning fewer calories because we are less active increases weight and fat mass. With decreased activity, muscle mass decreases.

Hormonal imbalances are multi-factorial disorders, meaning they are caused by a combination of factors such as your diet, medical history, genetics, stress levels and exposure to toxins from your environment. For example, most food storage containers are BPA-Free. BPA stands for bisphenol A. BPA is an industrial chemical that has been used to make certain plastics and resins since the 1960s. They are thought to cause endocrine disruption (of hormone activities). Continued exposure to BPA has been linked to estrogen dominance. While many containers and plastic cans may be BPA-Free, do you think those take-out plastic containers are BPA-Free?

Basically, once you get your hormone levels checked, you may want to add the help of a licensed, competent nutritionist. A nutritionist professional can help guide you through supplements (not approved by FDA) and dietary choices. Supplements and foods use ingredients that may mimic hormones like estrogen and progesterone. Xenoestrogens are a type of xenohormone that imitates estrogen. They can be either synthetic or natural chemical compounds. Because the primary route of exposure to these compounds is by consumption of phytoestrogenic plants, they are sometimes called “dietary estrogens”.

For example, certain foods deemed reasonably healthy in normal situations have been shown to promote estrogen dominance:

Seeds: flaxseeds and sesame seeds.
Fruit: apricots, oranges, strawberries, peaches, many dried fruits.
Vegetables: yams, carrots, alfalfa sprouts, kale, celery.
Soy products: tofu, miso soup, soy yogurt.
Dark rye bread.
Legumes: lentils, peas, pinto beans.
Olives and olive oil.
Chickpeas.

Foods that reduce estrogen dominance include higher fiber and cruciferous vegetables, such as cabbage, lettuces, spinach, kale, and collard greens.

Some foods work at both reducing estrogen levels while increasing progesterone levels. Over a few months, adding these to your diet may help suppress estrogen dominance. They are: Russet potatoes, salmon, tuna, bananas, spinach, walnuts, beef, chicken, sweet potato, beans and prunes.

Some obstetrics offices offer or can recommend competent nutritional counseling. Try to find someone that does. Associations of food have been studies and reviewed with powerful links to hormone balancing.

Herbal supplements for controlling menopause symptoms are very available. They may have ancient roots in alchemy and may be used as treatments around the world. They are not considered traditional medicine in the USA. Effectiveness and proper dosing have not been tested for use. Popular supplements include:

Black Cohosh – Studies on the benefits of black cohosh are mixed, but there have been some encouraging findings about the herb’s ability to decrease hot flashes, sweating, insomnia, and depression. A 2010 review by researchers found that black cohosh provided a 26% reduction in hot flashes and night sweats. According to WebMD, “It is used to treat women’s hormone-related symptoms, including premenstrual syndrome (PMS), menstrual cramps, and menopausal symptoms”. Not FDA approved in USA.

Dong Quai is an ancient Chinese remedy for menopausal and postmenopausal primary and secondary symptoms. Nutritionists claim Dong Quai is very beneficial. Again, though sold alone or in menopause supplement formulas in the USA, it is not FDA approved.

Another popular ingredient added to these supplements goes on the brand name Vitex. Vitex (chasteberry) is the most popular herbal remedy for premenstrual syndrome (PMS). It does not supply hormones but acts directly on the hypothalamus and pituitary glands. Vitex increases luteinizing hormone (LH) and modulates prolactin, resulting in a balance of estrogen and progesterone levels. This supplement has no FDA approval. There are also scientific questions how this herb functions and whether it is effective for all claims West coast health guru Dr. Axe disusses Vitex and cites some studies that claim both male and female symptom relief.

Supplements really should be discussed with a certified nutritionist. They are chemicals and may interact with areas that aren’t related but somehow have a secondary effect on hormone balancing. What may go well in Europe and Asia may not apply in the United States.

Controlling hormones isn’t dietary exclusively. Activity – walking, running or cycling – help restore hormone balance as well. While routine diet and activity are, by many, a word that is often censored, they help you create health holistically. Creating health and wellness is a bit different than the traditional medical problem that deals with a diagnosis of a specific problem, Dr. Eric Berg outlines why creating health through diet and activity as aids to balance hormones through the aging process:

Subsequently, traditional medicine and routine exams (at least once per year) are very effective methods that help isolate hormonal imbalances or, rather, conditions that arise when the symbiosis of those hundreds of hormones are changing.

Life has value but living is priceless. Estrogen dominance and progesterone deficiency partner with many symptoms that occur with aging. The key to understanding a quest for wellness and longevity is that hormonal balance is important, even though our endocrine system also deteriorates with age. Trying to escape those symptoms means diet, activity, and recovery by controlling stress and other values.

Recent research at Columbia University expresses that neurons continue to grow among older individuals. Barring chronic, disabling illnesses, they observed that (based on protein markers such as BDNF – Brain Derived Neurotropic Factors) within the hippocampus, neuron development did not yield neuronal network development. These protein factors are derived from hormones. Able social and physical activity, with aging, may offer potential development of neuronal networks. “It does appear to be the case that neurogenesis in the hippocampus is remarkably preserved in human beings,” says one of the researchers.

Life or living well. Are they choices? Well, you can sit, eat what you want, and minimize movement, other than taking racks of prescribed pills. Or you can use responsible methods of dieting and (social,physical) activities to grow better with age and aiding hormone balance.. Perhaps the best ways to mediate and control estrogen dominance and hormone imbalances is to become dominant yourself. Establish new wellness habits. Is it a gamble? Everything has side effects. It depends on who and what you want to bet. Living is an activity and, with awareness, you can control your hormone balances to help get rid of the symptoms derived from possible hormone imbalances.

Alzheimer disease apoE4 genetic cure?

Alzheimer’s disease is attributed to a slow breakdown of neuronal networks throughout the brain. It may begin in the mid-brain level in an area called the hippocampus. A neuronal network may be dedicated to a scene (person, animal, place), sound, taste, smell, touch. In conjunction with other neuronal networks, these help form your reality. Alzheimer disease interferes and destroys these networks. There are several hypotheses as to why and how this happens. A group of researchers at the University of California San Francisco have detected a gene variant among Alzheimer brains and are studying its use to find causes and a cure of Alzheimer disease.

Alzheimer disease apoE4 genetic cure? Studies published in April 2018 show positive indicators that a gene variant of APOE4 may be associated with beta-amyloid fragments and plaque found in those diagnosed as dementia/Alzheimer disease.. There are many kinds of memory loss coming from many sources. Alzheimer is seemingly over-diagnosed and is not limited to an older population. This APOE4 genetic variant may be only a piece of a very large puzzle. Alzheimer disease is not a game. It’s very serious. Yet, inferences of causality and treatment of those are ethereal – like gases.

The APOE gene set provides instructions for making a protein called apolipoprotein E. This protein combines with fats (lipids) in the body to form molecules called lipoproteins. Lipoproteins are responsible for packaging cholesterol and other fats and carrying them through the bloodstream. One of these APOE4 genes might lead to a pathway to cure Alzheimer’s disease, a cognitive memory disorder.

Scientists in an independent San Francisco lab believe that an apoE4 gene detection may be a pathway toward curing Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer disease is a diagnosis within the category of dementia. Alzheimer is usually found on brain examinations after death. New tests, such as MRI, PET, and Tau help physicians study potential possibilities to infer exact causes. Complicating an Alzheimer disease diagnosis is that both dementia and Alzheimer is a neurodegenerative disease, which means there is progressive brain cell death that happens over time. In a person with Alzheimer’s, the tissue has fewer and fewer nerve cells and connections.

For example, I was part a study on REM-Dream Sleep and cerebral memory storage. During REM, there is a switch among 2 neurotransmitters – acetylcholine and nor-epinephrine. Dreaming helps store long-term memories and associations. REM dreaming involves bringing acetylcholine up to the cortex to help store these memories. Theory was that if normal REM did not occur, long term memories would not be stored. This remains one of a dozen possible theories of a possible inference of dementia toward Alzheimer.

There have been research observations between schizophrenia and Alzheimer disease in that a certain area of the brain may be cause for both. Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia are radically different disorders, new research suggests that each disorder affects the same areas of the brain. Scientists observed similar lesions near the brain’s pre-frontal cortex.

A more current hypothesis are the development of beta-amyloid plaques and tangles to (and within) the brain. These could disassociate memory linkages. These are found in results of MRI and PET scans. The beta-amyloid protein involved in Alzheimer’s comes in several different molecular forms that collect between neurons. It is formed from the breakdown of a larger protein, called amyloid precursor protein. By disrupting neuronal network interaction, formation of these beta-amyloid proteins and peptides (over time) may result on Alzheimer disease symptoms.

Beta-amyloid is an important peptide, an amino acid chain from a host protein.. It does leave fragments between neurons that can form plaques. A normal brain, however, can eliminate beta-amyloid fragments before they disrupt neuron transmissions. Beta-amyloid comes from a larger protein found in the fatty membrane surrounding nerve cells. Beta-amyloid is chemically “sticky” and gradually builds up into plaques.

The APOE4 study from San Francisco was designed with live patients, using stem cells – based on the beta-amyloid model. The possible treatment toward cure results were positive.

Based on the beta-amyloid hypothesis and APOE44 variants, there are tests available to determine if you have these APOE4 gene variants. It is not FDA approved and is not concise at determining whether or not you may get Alzheimer disease. It may cause more worry than calm. APOE4 has been behind diagnoses such as high-cholesterol, coronary artery diseases, and obesity. Can APOE4 variants be used to treat, cure, or detect Alzheimer disease with some accuracy?

Could something as nasty as APOE4 variations help treat dementia and aging? Who knows? Potentially there may be other genes and other proteins? Nutritionists believe that diets rich in these foods may help reduce beta-amyloid build-up:

Foods That Reduce Your Alzheimer’s Risk
Walnuts (and almonds, pecans, hazelnuts) Walnuts might be small in size, but they pack a big nutritional punch.
Salmon (and mackerel, sardines, other fatty fish) …
Berries.
Spinach (and kale, other leafy greens)
Turmeric.
Coffee.
Chocolate (70%+)

In March 2018, the president signed into law a $414 million increase for Alzheimer’s and dementia research funding at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Kevin and Avonte’s Law, important legislation to protect those who wander. Alzheimer disease is getting everyone’s attention.

The dilemma is how valid this Beta-Amyloid hypothesis is, and how solid the apoE4 genetic cure for Alzheimer disease might be. As most early studies indicate, further research is necessary.

Food and mood – What you eat to enhance your mood

Food and mood – What you eat to enhance your mood

If you are depressed, should you see a psychiatrist or a nutritionist? Perhaps both. More research seems to point that eating the right foods may help alleviate depressing feelings.

The food and mood relationship keeps coming up in research. Does that mean you should drop your medications? The answer is No. Depression and other mood disorders may very well be chemically related. It is associated with hormones and fluids in the brain and elsewhere, heavily supported by comprehensive studies. Eating certain foods may augment those chemicals but not necessarily change their bio-availability. The food and mood relationship is further exacerbated by what foods help and what food don’t help. The professionals are so conflicted about the foods that, for affective effectiveness, you might just as well stick to the pill.

For more than 30 years, books on food and mood have lined shelves and online searches filled with twists of what may work.

Columbia University’s Mailman institute seems to be focused on food and mood by delivering interesting studies about childhood anxiety and food allergies. CBS news has produced a story how researchers are trying to tie-in numerous and large studies to explore and reveal the food and mood connection.

digestive system parts are linked to the brain by the vagus nerve.

The vagus nerve, when stimulated, sends mild signals to the brain to indicate that the gut is hungry. At this point all sorts of hormones are triggered, insulin is -preparing for food but none is coming. That might have something to do with brain fog that develops a couple hours after a routine meal. Brain fog occurs when the symptoms of low blood sugar are experienced a few hours after a meal even though blood glucose levels remain normal. This is also known as postprandial (“after eating”) hypoglycemia or postprandial dip. Performance a few hours after eating can fade and lead to anxiety.

There are some unique clinical aspects that are discussed because the relationships of food and mood seem like a simple way of treating depression. Is it? And do we really know what they are and how they work?

While many studies seem to make it appear that those living in Mediterranean regions have lower reports of depression, does it really correlate with food and mood? A recent report shows that 44% of women in East Mediterranean countries have mental disorders. A European survey reported that those reporting depression were about 11% in Italy, just slight lower than European average? Are these people NOT eating the Mediterranean Diet?

What is noted is that living the Mediterranean lifestyle – physical movement, social activities, and dietary adherence, might suggest lower reports of depression.

Then there are many other possible causes of depression mood disorder, not associated with food. The exact cause of depression disorders are not clearly known. However, there are several factors that can increase the risk of developing the condition. The APA might suggest that there are combinations of genes and stress that can influence changes in brain chemistry and reduce the ability to maintain mood stability. Yet, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) does stress depression’s alarming statistics:

Depression affects an estimated one in 15 adults (6.7%) in any given year. And one in six people (16.6%) will experience depression at some time in their life.

Yet the diagnosis is more involved with the symptoms than lifestyle causes of depression. It is very unlikely to indicate food and mood.

Per APA, symptoms are:

(Depression symptoms can vary from mild to severe and can include:)

Feeling sad or having a depressed mood
Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed
Changes in appetite — weight loss or gain unrelated to dieting
Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
Loss of energy or increased fatigue
Increase in purposeless physical activity (e.g., hand-wringing or pacing) or slowed movements and speech (actions observable by others)
Feeling worthless or guilty
Difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions
Thoughts of death or suicide

Of course, other possibilities may have an influence over any of these symptoms.

Food and mood may be associated with adding certain Omega 3 fats with slow absorbing carbohydrates. Low glycemic foods, chocolate, and food that has high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, tryptophan, folate and other B vitamins, have all been studied to evaluate their impact on mood. Results vary from study to study, but there usually appears to be an association between these foods and improved mood. Fundamentally, a good, healthy meal, with a vitamin supplement, might suggest an elevation in mood.

Beyond food, the importance of adequate hydration is often neglected. Your body needs water above any other liquid refreshment. General recommendations indicate that you drink 2 liters of water each day. Studies seem to indicate that moods change as your hydration drops. Water is the most overlooked nutrient. Many active people use skin sensing hydration monitors to assure that they are adequately hydrated. Drinking water also helps reduce that brain fog that may occur when meals are spaced too far apart – or beyond habituation. Think of water as a filling snack. Just keep it clear. No sweet drinks, sodas, juices, or coffee. Just cool, clear water.

Considering food and mood routinely is noble. There are subtle nuances in wither with differing benefits and consequences. Prescription anti-depressants are probably the best bet if your mood is blue for over a few months. Anti-depressants also have side effects that may continue to affect your moods negatively.

Severe or abrupt diets or intermittent fasting may be more depressing unless you really believe that you can and will transition for long term results. Food, processed or whole, have calories, carbohydrates, fats, cholesterol (and other things that people need to control) may be significant confounding variables. Eating tuna and salmon daily can bring Mercury poisoning. That alone is something to get depressed over.

Barring any unique illnesses or conditions, following USDA dietary guidelines would provide a healthy diet plan that could be satisfying in many ways, including your mood.

Chronic mood disorders may really require competent psychotherapists to prescribe those medications that work best and that you can tolerate.

In light degrees, food and mood may be close cousins. Depending upon dietary and mood severity, food and mood may be strange bed-partners. You are the peace maker. Food and mood are indirectly correlated with a positive slant. Some foods may not boost mood directly. Many work on different scopes of healthy nutrition. In virtually all variants, a good diet might be a good supplement to anti-depression therapy. It’s all relative.

NY Colored Orphan Asylum 1836 to 1863

Pardon my political incorrectness! This is my entry for Black History Month, February 1018, about a unique part of African-American history yn New York City at the 19th Century – the 1800’s.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, the city of New York used outer areas to house orphans, sick, and unwanted. It kept the peace stable. Most people lived in what is now the financial center and Tribeca. Farms gave way to establishing a city in lower Manhattan. One key question, how were “Negro” orphans treated in the segregated 19th century?

Orphans are and have been a reality for centuries. Churches have tried to camouflage it but there were orphanages in most western civilized societies. If you were black, Afro-American, or Negro in New York City’s 19th-century, and an orphan, you had a safe place to stay. The NY Colored Orphan Asylum was a secure, racist-free orphanage on Fifth Avenue, between 42nd and 43rd Streets. The Colored Orphan Asylum provided home services for about 233 children.

The New York City Colored Orphan Asylum was at this location from 1836 to 1863. Actually, the idea began in 1834 when three Quakers decided to create a safe haven for negro orphans. In 1836 they purchased a house on 12th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. The purchase was necessary because no property owner would lease to a group housing black children. With the house ready to receive orphans, three Quaker women headed to the almshouse. They rescued 11 children who were being housed in the cellar there.

In 1836, New York City barely resembled how it appears today. Most New York City residents lived south of 14th Street. Actually, south pf Canal Street. The infamous 5-Points neighborhood wasn’t built yet toward the now trendy lower east-side.

42nd Street and Fifth Avenue was undeveloped land and a socially acceptable area to build asylums, particularly a Colored Orphan Asylum. People didn’t need to see, hear, or think about the wayward, the sick, and the orphans. As a matter, one main reservoir from the original Croton Reservoir (1843) was on 42nd Street, where Bryant Park is today. That’s how remote the current midtown hub was in 1836. It remained there until 1863 when it was destroyed and burned.

White racism among the poor and immigrant people reacted to the Civil War military draft imposed by President Abraham Lincoln. A key problem focused that the advantaged wealthy were able to pay for exemption. The poor and new immigrants from Germany and Ireland would be drafted.

The poor Irish and German immigrants had a particular focal point at targeting the African-Americans of New York as scapegoats. The Irish usually had to compete with the “Negroes” for jobs and grunt labor, particularly in building tunnels, such as the water tunnels and sewage tunnels. In addition, “Negroes” were pretty much exempt from being drafted due to a lack of military opportunities.

The riots were a three-day orgy of violence towards Afro-American owned businesses, Afro-Americans, and Native Americans. They marched upwards to the shanty areas where those “minorities” lived. And, by the third day, the Colored Orphan Asylum was burned to the ground. Most of the children were rescued by the Fire and Police department.

The asylum would relocate to 144th Street and Amsterdam Avenue, in the new village of Harlem, at Sugar Hill. Later it moved to Riverdale in the Bronx. Though attractive, the Riverdale site was the most upper, out-of-the-way area of the Bronx, on West 261 Street bordering Yonkers. It was larger and considered one of the best orphanages in New York City. In the 1960’s, the site was sold to the Hebrew Home for the Aged.

Dr. James McCune Smith, an African-American physician, provided medical services for about 20 years to the orphans at Colored Orphan Asylum in New York. As there were absolutely no opportunities for Africans to enter medical schools in the United States, Dr. McCune received his medical education at the University of Glasgow in Scotland. In addition, he was the founder of the American Geographic Society.

It is difficult to put yourself in the shoes of those who are not seen as being on par with tour status. Many minorities are viewed under different scopes. This included blacks and the poor. The conceptualization of race (or gender) moved from the biological to the sociological sphere with the march of science. The atmosphere created by racial inferiority theories and stereotypes, 246 years of black chattel slavery, along with biased educational processes, almost inevitably led to medical and scientific abuse, unethical experimentation, and over-utilization of African-Americans as subjects for teaching and training purposes. Stricter ethical controls became issues only in the late 1970’s.

With no acceptance to the American Medical Society, most 19th-century African medical doctors received training in Africa, Europe, or very segregated schools in the Americas. Thus it is important to understand how influential the Quakers were in providing medical care to those residing at the New York City Colored Orphan Asylum.

In contrast to what happened in Manhattan in 1863, There was a Home for Colored Aged in Crown Heights in 1863, supported by many philanthropists of that area. These African Americans had lived in a Brooklyn area called Weeksville. This area had one of the largest (one of three) “Colored” communities.

Unwanted or orphaned children continues to be a society-wide dilemma, often debated. Fortunately, segregation is no longer legally valid. Despite strides toward the American Dream of equal opportunity, people are still separated by race, ethnic, religious and gender issues. As Senator Patrick Moynihan may have said, New York (and the USA) is less of a melting pot but more like a tossed salad. There are still many strides and challenges to overcome.

Alzheimer disease and neurostimulation pacemaker

The powers of cognition (the ability to recognize people, places, things and relationships) are believed to take place in the frontal lobe areas of the brain. Some theorists believe that when certain areas of the frontal lobe degrade, so do the rapid access to the entire brain’s cognitive networks. New research seems to be emerging on creating digital pacemakers to stimulate those tissues of the frontal cerebral cortex that otherwise might develop Alzheimer Disease.

Cognition is about thinking and interpreting sensory perceptions – touch, see, hear, smell, and taste. We create emotional attachments to these senses and the viability of those senses off significant contributions to survival and growth. These begin at birth. Some say before birth, as evolutionary genetic markers pass along to generations.

Many people get frightened when they seem forgetful or get stuck on that tip-of-tongue phenomenon. Some fear these are signs of Alzheimer Disease. Other causes for memory problems can include aging, medical conditions, emotional problems, mild cognitive impairment, or another type of dementia.

Alzheimer Disease was once exclusively attributed to aging. It is the degradation of the ability to develop and access cognitive networks. Simply put, it isn’t. Many adults maintain cognition throughout their entire lifespans. Alzheimer disease may also form at much earlier ages. Cognition is a very lively, experimented topic. The development of Alzheimer disease and cognitive research are part of a mutually cohesive network with many branches. Can brain stimulation of certain areas improve chances of reducing or avoiding the effects of Alzheimer disease?

The use and research of brain pacemakers is less than a decade old and was originally developed to help treat Parkinson’s disease. A significant research sponsor is Michael J. Fox, a popular TV actor who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s.

When it comes to Alzheimer Disease, there are many memory disorders. Currently research theorists on the development of Alzheimer disease debate inferences of causality.

The problem has been that as it emerged beyond the aged norm of senility, Alzheimer’s disease was diagnosed with complete accuracy only after death, when microscopic examination of the brain reveals the characteristic plaques and tangles. This leads to questions as to why so many living people are being diagnosed with Alzheimer disease?

There has been much evidence that has shown how mice kept in a stimulated environment (vs mice in a non-stimulated environment) developed more brain tissue and neuron networks. Neurologists have been discussing that physical exercise produces BDNF or Brain-derived neurotrophic factors. BDNF, it is believed, promotes the survival of nerve cells (neurons) by playing a role in the growth, maturation (differentiation), and maintenance of these cells. It may play a role in building new neuron networks. Some studies support that BDNF increases as a result of physical exercise, aiding neuronal health. The presence of BDNF acts as a natural stimulant for certain brain areas. Since BDNF is genetic, can the reduction or absence of BDNF be behind some cognitive declines?

Cardio-exercise, REM Sleep, Antioxidants found in Coffee or Tea and Meditation help produce BDNF. Subsequently, stress, sugar, and social isolation may reduce BDNF. As such, some that are immobile or old (lacking social networks) might be developing some cognitive impairment because of lower BDNF levels.

According to BBC News,Doctors have known for some time that loneliness is bad for the mind. It leads to mental health problems like depression, stress, anxiety, and a lack of confidence. But there’s growing evidence that social isolation is connected with an increased risk of physical ill health as well. Again, stimulation helps cognitive wellness.

Use of brain pacemakers to help prevent cognitive decline is relatively new and few agree where they should be implanted. Nonetheless, Nanobioelectronics represents a rapidly developing field with broad-ranging opportunities in fundamental biological sciences, biotechnology, and medicine. Instead of referring to these as pacemakers, I prefer neuroprosthetics for monitoring and treating neurological diseases that may help resolve some of those cognitive pathologies that we only are beginning to fathom. Be it Parkinson’s, dementia (there are 4 types of dementia), aphasia, or Alzheimer disease symptoms, there are futures to behold.

There are many things that disrupt access to memories. Finding the seat to how memories are retrieved, processed and accessed is very complex and often to broad to even consider. Normal memory function involves many parts of the brain. Any disease or injury that affects the brain can interfere with memory. Amnesia, for example, might result from a physical trauma from an injury or accident. It may also develop from other causes, often undefined. Dissociative amnesia is organic and may results from a medical or psychological cause as opposed to direct damage to the brain.

There are two types of amnesia:

Anteror Grade Amnesia – Anterograde amnesia is a loss of the ability to create new memories after the event that caused the amnesia, leading to a partial or complete inability to recall the recent past, while long-term memories from before the event remains intact. In a sense, one with Anteror Grade amnesia has no short-term memory.

RetroGrade is a loss of memory-access to events that occurred, or information that was learned, before an injury or the onset of a disease. … It is not to be confused with antero-grade amnesia, which deals with the inability to form new memories following the onset of an injury or disease. One with retrograde may create new memories.

While neuroscience has made inroads at understanding the locations of where memories are stored and, possible treating amnesia. Yet, as result of research, amnesia – particularly antero-grade amnesia – was medically induced. This happened in the case of H.M.

The high incidences of cognitive loss and Alzheimer disease continue despite vast experimentation and research. Are more people being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s than before. There is a genetic marker, APOe-4, that seems to cite some evidence. Yet there are clean genes, dirty genes, and mutated genes. And nutritionists believe that this gene could be influence by dietary factors.

But is APOe-4 the only gene behind Alzheimer onset? Is there more research necessary? In the complex universe of the brain, there is obviously a vast network of questions covering nutrition, neurotransmitters, neurotransmission co factors, and infinite variables from environment and activity.

How would positive results of an APOe-4 test and scale influence one’s life, career, and state of living?

Are we dealing with Alzheimer disease, micro-stroke with cognitive decline, or other cognitive issues?

Of course many of the research experiments aren’t well funded. Perhaps some corporate donors might want to sponsor the research. Elon Musk, of Tesla and Space-X, is developing Neuralink that connects brains with computers. While Neuralink shows no ambitions to treat Parkinson or Alzheimer disease, it may stimulate other business leaders to consider possible investments.

I supported and studied frontal lobe dementia. Frontal lobe dementia does not cause memory loss, but it can exhibit cognitive and neurological problems similar to those caused by Alzheimer’s disease or stroke. The particular area of atrophy is not dissimilar between schizophrenia and dementia. Similar theorists believe that long-term memory storage may have been disaffected due to biochemical deficiencies in REM sleep. On either level, there are no clear etiologies that indicate or predetermine any causal effect of alzheimer disease type symptoms. Yet schizophrenic symptoms and dementia symptoms share some similarities that may be from a missing link between the cortex and the mid-brain memiry centers.

Genetics, diet, smoking, alcohol, substance abuse might be not highly associative to dementia. The problems involve neurotransmitters, catalysts, inhibitors, proteins, peptides, enzymes and a host of variability make us wonder ever more how this prefrontal lesion originated and its effects on memory and organized thinking.

A neurostimulation implant pacemaker therapy may be one significant approach to help suppress cognitive deficits. Using nano-electronic intervention for cognitive decline and avoiding Alzheimer disease, is a promising exploration into helping patients and families deal with cognitive decline. Whether a brain pacemaker will be a benefit is really up to further research as to where they could best stimulate possible reduction in Alzheimer disease decline. Yet, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow may still require a series of quixotic games, puzzles, and questions to conclusively answer. We still don’t know what lies ahead. Do you?

Time restricted eating and Intermittent fasting diets

It isn’t what you eat. It’s when you eat. Meet newer wisdom that may be or not be true.

Research indicates that Time Restricted Eating is a better, healthier way of curbing obesity and weight management. This mouse study shows some really interesting results from its strict controlled environment. Can humans follow it?


Humans do not live in a research lab.

The research went like this:
A mouse allowed to eat 24 hours a day (left) had much higher levels of liver fat (white) than one that consumed the same high-fat diet within an 8-hour daily feeding window (right). Mice that eat only during certain hours avoid obesity and related health problems—even on a high-fat diet.

According to the researchers of this study, While we eat, the body stores fat, which adds weight and puts stress on the liver, and produces glucose, which elevates blood sugar levels—a sign of diabetes. In contrast, evidence suggests that when we stop eating for several hours, the liver stops releasing glucose into the blood, and instead uses it to repair cellular damage. It also releases enzymes that break down cholesterol into acids, which in turn help break down brown fat—a “good” fat that converts calories into heat.

The researchers also add some caution — It’s not yet clear whether there’s a minimum fasting time for the metabolic benefits to kick in at all, or whether they simply work better the longer the fasting time. The researchers also caution that the study shouldn’t motivate anyone to adjust their eating schedule and then completely ignore the fat content of their diet. They also add that there is no evidence that mouse results would be applicable to humans.

Barring some diseases and more sedentary behaviors, obesity. Pictures from our past show many people that would be called obese today. In the past, your ancestors struggled with food scarcity; whereas, today, Americans enjoy an overabundance of available food sources.

Our ancestors had no refrigeration so they ate as needed. Mostly agrarian, they were proficient at storing carbohydrate grains through harsh winters.These ancestors faced difficult lives with long, strenuous, routine labors. Today, office work is more common and computing devices replaced more manual labor.

Early philosophers observed obesity and possible effects. Hippocrates wrote that “Corpulence is not only a disease itself, but the harbinger of others”. As therapy, time restricted eating has few long-term results indicating a considered lifestyle choice. Yet, those willing to try and lose 50 or more pounds find media news about time restricted eating or intermittent fasting attractive.

Gluconeogenesis is a trick that favors low-carb dieting. Time restricted eating, ketogenic, and Intermittent fasting diets postulate that restricting carbohydrates will result in the body creating its own glucose, if you restrict sugars and starch from your body. No sugars mean the body cojnverts body fat into energy. Weight loss is the gain. Simple. Yet the process may also produce some harmful effects down the line. Going too extreme can create stress to your normal functions and cortisol is the end product of managing stress.

The cortisol/glucogenesis relationship is a hormonal process and high levels of cortisol can make any of these low-carb dieters consider other options. Cortisol is an end-product of Adrenalin, secreted by adrenal glands, and is considered one of the key ways that our body responds to stress as fight or flight. Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream, enhances your brain’s use of glucose and increases the availability of substances that repair tissues. The reaction is supposed to be brief as cortisol washes away after a stressful incident. When cortisol remains for too long it may be possible to develop HPA Syndrome or adrenal fatigue.

The problems associated with chronically elevated cortisol levels include:
Suppressed immunity.
Hypertension.
High blood sugar (hyperglycemia)
Insulin resistance.
Carbohydrate cravings.
Metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
Fat deposits on the face, neck, and belly.
Reduced libido.

Reducing cortisol to a healthy balance requires managing body stress. That takes a chronic approach. Cortisol is made by your adrenal glands, two small glands that sit on top of your kidneys. As a critical end-product in stress management, cortisol plays a key role in other functions, including how your body breaks down carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins. Ketogenic diets believe that if no carbohydrates are present, the liver and kidneys will generate simple-carbs for what the body requires, including the brain. It then metabolizes lipids (fats) and proteins that promote weight loss. While there are tests for cortisol levels, any of these fad diets require scrutiny in the long run.

Cortisol is one of the byproducts among the mechanisms used as natural body protectors in stressful situations. Other hormones are from the pituitary gland that releases corticotropin releasing hormone, or CRH. This hormone acts as a catalyst to create corticosteroids – one of which is cortisol.

This network of natural responses deal with maintaining homeostasis (balance) within the body. Trying to adapt time restricted eating and intermittent fasting diets are habits that run against normal balance. They can be very stressful. Habituation to these diets can be extremely difficult.

In addition, living requires homeostasis — body balance. For some, skipping meals and severely limiting calories can be dangerous. People with certain conditions, such as diabetes, coronary diseases, hypertension, and others associated with chronic obesity may be prone to electrolyte abnormalities from fasting. Some may be dietary while others may be side-effects from medicines you are taking.

A recent article posted association with inflammatory dieting with the incidence of cancer in men.

When it comes to managing weight, time restricted eating and intermittent fasting diets require serious (if not religious) thought. Can you follow these prerequisites and conditions for both weight loss and health maintenance?

The major research on time restricted eating is at the mouse level. Harvard University indicates research on intermittent fasting has been small. One of the not-so-alarming results was a very high dropout rate (38%) in the intermittent fasting group.

While time restricted eating and intermittent fasting diets are in vogue, there is confusion of what foods can be eaten when you can eat. Ads show higher caloric, carb-rich foods, and bad fat foods. That really doesn’t work.

That Hippocrates was mentioning the complex nature of corpulence around 2500 years ago, is a worthy observation that indicates obesity as a significant reality in human history. The low-carbohydrate, high fat diet was developed by William Banting in the 19th century. It was anecdotal as he was the only subject of his original study. He was the first person to do it. It’s been made popular by Professor Tim Noakes in his book The Real Meal Revolution. The idea is that this way of eating makes your body switch from burning carbs for energy to burning fat. Later, Atkins and others wrote books supporting this approach.

From appearance to wellness, diets reign as top in the self-help books and articles. Weight gain and slower metabolism is normal with age. Fashion and health guidelines determine obesity leveling. The main caveat, your body tries to keep an inner balance. Your body is happy being fat and doesn’t consider the possible illnesses that may be attributed to that condition.

Both intermittent fasting and time restricted eating are throwing blows to the generally acceptable calorie restriction diets. Advocates of intermittent fasting and restricted eating claim that, following either, will improve biorhythms and sleep. Yet more people are concerned about their fasting schedules. How will it affect my work, my leisure, and all my other activities. There can be social problems as to whether you can eat dinner out. Unlike our ancestors that ate 2 meals per day – morning and evening – our day spans 24-hours of probable resting and active activity. Does time impact weight gain? Is this a stressor?

The key basis of time restricted eating is that our ancestors followed a circadian rhythm guided by sunrises and sunsets. Once we were able to control light, adjustments were allowed to live differently. Electricity and digital-age change the way we see time. Living 24/7 is probable but is it healthful?

As such, Time restricted eating, Intermittent fasting diets, and any other radical regimen that sweep through the media have to be taken as light jokes. Sensibilities dictate that you really consider whether you can follow these diets in a world where you work, play, and have an abundance of meal and snacking choices. As you age, fat develops and metabolism rates reduce. While responsible eating and exercise matters, how easily can you adapt to any diet?

As time restricted eating and intermittent fasting diets have little research on humans, long-term side-effects aren’t really known. You might lose weight but at what biochemical cost? Will it extend overall wellness? Habits are hard to break but you can learn to tweak them in proper directions.We all make adjustments to new realities with responsibility and care. Overall, we are not mice in a cage. We are people living in modern societies.