Bio-availability, Life Force..
The Martial Art of Wellness
Volume 7 – March 2008
Welcome to this month’s BioNews. We must learn to free ourselves from the control that others exert over us. As we learn we become FREE, we become powerful. This pursuit of self defense in wellness, I call “The Martial Art of Wellness.” And as we practice we become Wellness Ninjas.
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
“Modern man ends up a vitamin-taking, antacid-consuming, barbiturate-sedated, aspirin-alleviated, benzedrine-stimulated, psycho-somatically diseased, surgically despoiled animal. Nature’s highest product turns out to be a fatigued, peptic-ulcerated, tense, headachy, over-stimulated, neurotic, tonsil-less and appendix-less creature.”
THIS ISSUE’S TESTIMONIALS:
…recovered my health and happiness…
“Hello, I started using BAC June 7, 1986. Following an accident in September 2002, I had remained very weak and ill. After having tried unsuccessfully many approach to restoring my health, I came across your product. At the time, I was still suffering from advanced degenerative symptoms of low energy, poor digestion, depression, anger and confusion. When I started taking your capsules, all began to change gradually. And today I am almost completely fine except for some remaining memory and balance problems. Your product has dramatically helped me recover my health and happiness.”
– Guylaine B, Montreal, Canada, November 2007
SUPPLEMENTATION – PART II OF IV (Bio-availability, Life Force and Safety)
For the purpose of this article, I describe synthetic supplements as those supplements concocted by man, usually composed of one or many of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, phytonutrients, amino acids, etc., that are either made from chemicals, and/or that do not occur naturally with a whole food. Typically they are blends of isolates from chemicals, or if from food, they are separate or extract, their molecules are never complete and balanced with their co-dependant brothers and sisters, as when molecules occur in whole foods. Most often they are served as mega dose quantity much greater then our body can deal with, or tolerate. The bio-availability of synthetic supplements is either ZERO, or well below 80% that of naturally occurring nutrients, and often these supplements are toxic and dangerous for your health.
“ The synthetic supplements may look identical as naturally occurring (with the whole food) substances, or may appear closely related. The close relations, although useful in many ways, pose some problems in that they may have only a fraction, whether large or small, of the biological activity of the naturally occurring products… Synthetic vitamins may perform some of the functions of their naturally occurring counterparts while being useless in others. But what may be more important is the fact that synthetic vitamins, prepared from chemicals or separated from their natural state, are less active biologically than their naturally occurring counterparts, thereby reducing any beneficial effect they may have. ” – Isobel Jennings of Cambridge University
“The only truly natural vitamins and minerals are those that occur with whole foods. They may also be available in some whole food nutritional supplements as highly nutritious, concentrated foods; powdered concentrates of foods and herbs with only the moisture, an isolated component of whole food removed. Some sources of these include wheat-grass, freshwater algae (blue-green algae, spirulina), sea vegetables such as kelp, wheat-germ.”– Home Safe Home by Debra Lynn Dadd
On Vitamins and Minerals – I’ve eluded to this throughout this series, and it deserves repeating: there’s no such thing as an isolated vitamin or mineral or any other separated nutrient growing in nature. For example, there are no “Vitamin C” fruits growing on trees; all fruits offer a spectrum of vitamins and minerals. There are no “Calcium leaves” on vegetables; all vegetables have an assortment of minerals and phytochemicals that work synergistically to support human health.
Whole food sources provide spectrums of abundant and synergistic elements that work together in the human body in ways that no scientist can truly comprehend nor replicate. Contemporary scientists have not yet identified the tip of the iceberg in the domain of phytochemicals, those microscopic elements found in fruits, vegetables and micro-algae, much less studied their combined effects in any detail.
All of us have been hearing about vitamins since we were small children. Still today we hear authoritative sources say, “Be sure to take your vitamins!” But, today we have also proven that all the vitamins in the world do us little good without minerals! Why do people continue taking them without minerals? Vitamins are a group of chemically unrelated organic nutrients; carbon, oxygen and hydrogen which are essential in small quantities for our normal metabolism, growth and well being. Vitamins must be obtained through diet since they are either not synthesized in our bodies or are synthesized in inadequate amounts. Minerals are very different from vitamins in their structure and the work they do. According to Rodale’s Complete Book of Minerals for Health, minerals create a healthy environment in which the body, using vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates and fats, can grow, function and heal itself. But for this working relationship to happen, both vitamins and minerals must be eaten together. Only then can we benefit from the harmonious synergistic power of vitamins and minerals.
Recently, we often hear about the importance of enzymes and anti-oxidants. Enzymes are extremely important for our multitude of metabolic functions, but enzymes are really vitamins, so here again they do us little good without minerals. Conversely, some vitamins are helpmates to minerals. Some minerals are eager workers, but to perform at all they need a vitamin or two to stir them into action. For examples, vitamin C can significantly increase iron absorption, and calcium absorption is impossible without vitamin D.
On mineral assimilation or non-assimilation –
“ Plant minerals like those obtained from tomatoes, broccoli, potatoes, oranges, etc., are different from metallic (synthetic) minerals. Their size and molecular weight is much smaller than that of metallic minerals. In most cases the plant minerals are attached to a different molecule, even though they possess the same name. We predict that the scientific industry will change the name of plant minerals in the future. This might occur after they eventually realize plant minerals are no longer metal elements.” – READER’S DIGEST – March 1936 – Dr. Ranville of the Colorado School of Mines) –
Basically, the size scale reveals that “inorganic” clay, silt and hydrophobic metallic minerals, on average, are considerably larger than “organic” hydrophilic acids or hydrophilic plant minerals. The research clearly indicate that bacteria, viruses, clay, and humic metalo-complexes (metallic or synthetic minerals) are considerably larger than hydrophilic (plant) complexes such as hydrophilic plant derived minerals. Pure plant minerals can be pumped through a pharmaceutical grade: .05-micron absolute filter. Most metallic minerals will not pass through this small membrane. Only water passes through. Note: A water molecule is only slightly smaller than hydrophilic complexes. The small size and water solubility is one of the reasons so many nutritionists believe plant minerals are much easier to assimilate or absorb than metallic minerals. When comparing the size and weight of metallic and plant minerals, it is easy to see that the molecular weight of hydrophilic (plant) complexes is considerably less than metallic complexes. In short, this clearly indicates there is a great difference in, generally known, “metallic minerals” and “plant minerals”.
More argument for whole food nutrients – Furthermore, even if the vitamin supplement is of what some marketers call “natural source”, you will still have problems of non bio-availability. For examples; vitamin C needs minimally a certain amount of zinc to be absorbable, vitamin E requires at least some selenium to be absorbed, vitamins A, D, E and K to be absorbed, require fatty acids omega 6 and omega 3, and those fatty acids must occur in proper ratio between themselves. And so forth at the level of cellular nutrition, for proper balance and synergy, there are endless molecular requirements that can only be obtained with whole food base nutrition.
Why not get your nutrients from natural and whole food sources? All our nutritional requirements can be met with a varied diet of organic whole foods. And health wise, there is a world of difference between synthetic and natural when you take into account energy units return per consumption, natural will always be more effective and cheaper in the short and the long run. Knowing what you now know, which would you choose; the food in the mirror … or the real thing?
I read that the B12 from algae and other plants cannot be absorbed well and therefore needs to be supplemented if not eating much meat
These days the vitamin B12 deficiency myth continues to surface. There is much non scientific rumors about B12 and its relationship with certain algae. Usually these rumors are preached by old doctors, marketers, or talk radio shows dominated by heavy recommendations for drugs, meat and dairy products, but the question still comes up. In reality, a very small number of people may develop a B12 deficiency, and interestingly most of them are not vegetarian or vegan.
Yes, vitamin B12 is a critical vitamin, and it helps in proper formation of red blood cells, manufacturing of DNA, formation of fatty insulation surrounding nerve cells, detoxification of cyanide from cigarettes and food, cancer prevention, nervous system health, proper growth, prevention of PMS, posture and balance, memory and concentration, proper cell division, sperm production and motility.
Also known as cobalamin due to its central cobalt atom, vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin with a low daily requirement of 2 to 3 micrograms, that’s micrograms, not milligrams. In addition to having extremely low intake requirements, vitamin B12 is stored in the liver, kidneys, and muscle tissue, and 65% to 75% of our B12 is reabsorbed by the body instead of excreted.
“All of the Vitamin B12 in the world ultimately comes from bacteria. Neither plants nor animals can synthesize it. But plants can be contaminated with B12 when they come in contact with soil bacteria that produce it. Animal foods are rich in B12 only because animals eat foods that are contaminated with it or because bacteria living in an animal’s intestines make it.”— The Vegetarian Way: Total Health for You and Your Family (1996), Virginia Messina, MPH, RD, & Mark Messina, PhD p. 102
After reading this description of human assimilation of B12, I hope you realize the futility of supplementation of mega dose of B12 in any form. A B12 deficiency could take from 5 to 20 years to develop from inadequate intake, but most likely from degenerative mal-assimilation. Eventually a B12 deficiency manifests as nerve damage and pernicious anemia, a type of anemia where red blood cells are improperly formed and white blood cell count is low. It is clear that you will be served 1000% better if you focus on re-enforcing your overall cerebral and endocrine health through diet and exercise, which in turn will restore your efficient assimilation and absorption of B12, and of a myriad of other nutrients.
So how could anyone develop pernicious anemia when B12 intake requirements are so low, and when the liver stores so much that it takes years for a deficiency to develop? The reason touted for the B12 myth is that B12 is found primarily in animal foods. Very few plant foods provide good sources of B12, they say (in reality several plants and algae food contain good level of B12). So that statement is only partly true anyway, because the real source of B12 is not plants OR animals; neither manufacture their own B12. In the B12 arena, its bacteria that are the B12 producers on which both plants and animals rely. And in humans, bacteria doesn’t necessarily come from plants — our mouth, upper intestine, and lower intestine all contain bacteria that produce B12.
Another cause of B12 deficiency could be its destruction due to dietary or environmental factors. For example, smoking, high protein diets, alcohol consumption, chlorinated water (disruption by chloroform), and diarrhea may deplete B12. But the most common causes of B12 deficiency are absorption or re-absorption problems due to poor intrinsic factor production, a metabolic deficiency that is extremely frequent in America.
B12 health the right way! – Allopathic mega dosing of B12 is not a solution. Today it is well known that large amounts of isolate nutrients over what the body would normally obtain from foods does not resolve the deficiency, but actually may lead to further imbalances, and as new body of research is proving, may cause cancer and cardiovascular problems. Rather then buying in the “B12 deficiency” myth, the better way to feel secure about B12 is to restore your vitality overall. This wholistic approach is achieve with proper diet and exercise; a high energy diet rich in mixed whole foods, a great portion being fruits and vegetables for their high mineral, vitamin and phytonutrients content.
B12 and BAC? – As mentioned above, B12 is manufactured by bacteria and much of Bio-Algae Concentrates are bacteria in the form of cyanobacteria, the scientific name for spirulina, the algae well known for its high quality B12 content. In summary, YES, BAC supplies a certain amount of extremely efficient B12 as present in three of its four algae whole food, and that is a good thing. BUT, the much more important benefit of consuming BAC in regards to B12 requirements, is its “BAC awakens the genius within” action of nourishing efficiently the hypothalamus / pituitary axis which in turn restores the metabolisms involved in B12 assimilation and B12 synthesis, including that of a healthy pancreas and intrinsic factor. This in turn results in dramatic increase of your assimilation of B12 from your foods, and of its absorption and re-absorption in your digestive tracks.