All posts in Female issues

Probiotics in Pregnancy Could Have Diabetes Benefits

British Journal of Nutrition 103(12):1792-1799, 2010

In a new study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that probiotic-supplemented dietary counseling could help reduce the risk of diabetes during pregnancy, improve blood glucose control and improve child health.

Initiated in 2002, the study included 256 women, who were randomized during their first trimester of pregnancy into a control and dietary intervention group. The women, none of whom had any chronic diseases, all received dietary counseling provided by welfare clinics according to a national program.

The intervention group received additional intensive dietary counseling provided by a nutritionist at every study visit, the aim being a dietary intake complying with current recommendations, combined with conventional food products with favorable fat and fiber contents for use at home, the researchers said.

The intervention group was further randomized at baseline in a double-blind manner to receive either placebo capsules or probiotics (Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Bifidobacterium) at a dose of 1,010 colony-forming units per day each. The capsules were taken once per day and the intervention period extended from the first trimester of pregnancy to the end of exclusive breast-feeding.

The researchers evaluated pregnancy outcome and fetal and infant growth during 24 months of follow-up. All pregnancies were of normal duration and there were no adverse events noted in mothers or in children, which confirms the safety of this approach, the researchers said.

They noted that those women who had taken probiotics had a reduced frequency of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM): 13% for the diet/probiotics group, compared to 36% for the diet/placebo group and 34% for the control group. In addition, the dietary counseling during pregnancy reduced the risk of fetal overgrowth, which is thought to predispose to later obesity.

“Probiotic intervention reduced the risk of GDM and dietary intervention diminished the risk of larger birth size in affected cases,” wrote the researchers. “The results of the present study show that probiotic-supplemented perinatal dietary counseling could be a safe and cost-effective tool in addressing the metabolic epidemic. In view of the fact that birth size is a risk marker for later obesity, the present results are of significance for public health in demonstrating that this risk is modifiable.”

I recommend UltraFlora Plus DF from Metagenics for probiotics. Order @ www.DrJeffreyTucker.meta-ehealth.com

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Smoother Skin-Stronger Nails-Thicker Hair

Scores of women clamored for a spot in the landmark clinical trial at the Vrije University in Brussels, Belgium. Letters poured in. Phones rang off the hook. E-mails jammed the system.

What was going on? Word had leaked that university scientists were about to test a natural compound that had the potential to reduce age-related fine lines and wrinkles, thicken hair, and strengthen nails. All this with a natural supplement!

The natural compound at the center of the “sign-me-up” frenzy was choline-stabilized orthosilicic acid, the foundation of RegeneMax formulas.

Ultimately, fifty women were chosen to participate. Half were asked to take two doses per day of RegeneMax; the other half, two doses per day of a placebo. No other aspects of the women’s lifestyles – diet, cosmetics, daily routines, etc. – were to change.

At the end of the twenty week study, the results were remarkable! The Vrije University research scientists had shown – with actual measurements – that RegeneMax could provide users with dramatic beauty-enhancing benefits. Here’s what they found:

SKIN: RegeneMax reduced fine lines and wrinkles by a full 19%. Further, the skin was dramatically more resilient in just the first twenty weeks.

HAIR: RegeneMax significantly increased hair thickness. Hair demonstarted greater volume and more body.

NAILS: RegeneMax dramatically strengthened nails. Nails became more break-resistant.

Call XYMOGEN @ 1-800-647-6100

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What dose for vitamin K?

In one  study from the Netherlands, researchers recruited 325 postmenopausal women without osteoporosis. Half the women received a placebo and half received vitamin K2, 45 milligrams per day. 

The intervention period: three years.

Results: Bending strength, compression strength, and impact strength all improved in the K2 group, but not in the placebo group. Also, bone mineral content and femoral neck width increased in the K2 group, but not in the placebo group.

The detail about the femoral neck is a key point.

The femoral neck is a narrow section of the femur (thigh bone) located just below the ball-and-socket hip joint. When the femoral neck is fractured, the femur is often disconnected from the ball. In an aging population, that’s a common and very painful fracture.

Dietary sources of K2 include meat, liver, egg yolk, and fermented products such as yogurt and cheese. Vitamin K1 is mostly found in dark, leafy green vegetables and is converted to K2 in the intestine.

Supplement with EstroFactors by Metagenics www.DrJeffreyTucker.meta-ehealth.com

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Estrovera for menopausal women with hot flashes

Estrovera, an all-natural dietary supplement has been shown to:

  • Reduce the number and severity of menopausal hot flashes on a par with an ultra low dose hormone therapy but without the potential adverse effects of hormone therapy*
  • Significantly reduce the number and severity of menopausal hot flashes and night sweats compared to placebo*
  • Relieve a wide range of other menopausal symptoms including sleep disturbances, poor mood, physical and emotional exhaustion, joint and muscle complaints, and urogenital symptoms*
  • Be free of any forms of estrogen*
  • Be well-tolerated and safe for long-term use*

Extensive Clinical Research

ERr 731 was first introduced in 1993 in Germany, where it continues to be widely recommended by health care providers. It is one of the most thoroughly researched natural compounds for managing menopausal symptoms, including the following clinical studies:

  • Two 12-week multicenter, prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical studies
  • A 2-year open observational study to determine long-term efficacy and safe use 
  • A 6-month prospective post-marketing surveillance study conducted at 70 gynecological centers

Dramatic Results

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 112 perimenopausal women with menopausal symptoms, subjects who took just 4 mg of ERr 731 (equivalent to one Estrovera tablet) daily for 12 weeks experienced:

  • Statistically significant reduction in hot flashes per day (12 at baseline and 2 at study end) vs. placebo (12 at baseline and 13 at study end)*
  • Statistically significant improvement vs. placebo in all 11 menopausal symptoms in the Menopause Rating Scale (MRS), a validated measurement tool to evaluate hormone and natural therapies*

Menopause: A Natural Progression

Menopause is part of the natural progression of a woman’s life. But for up to 8 out of 10 women, this time of transition—which can last anywhere from 2 to 10 years—can be fraught with an array of climacteric symptoms that can negatively affect their quality of life. Most bothersome of these complaints are hot flashes and “night” sweats, two vasomotor symptoms that can occur any time of the day. These symptoms can leave a woman feeling uncomfortable and embarrassed and cause her to awaken frequently at night, leading to exhaustion, mental fatigue, and depression. During the early stages of menopause, called perimenopause, these symptoms can be especially frequent and intense; some perimenopausal women experience 10 or more moderate to severe hot flashes in a single day.

Order Estrovera @ www.DrJeffreyTucker.meta-ehealth.com

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Pelvic floor disorders in women are associated with low vitamin D levels.

Researchers at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse New York recently announced that pelvic floor disorders in women are associated with low vitamin D levels.

In a paper published in the April issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Samuel Badalian and Paula Rosenbaum studied 1,961 women and found 23% of American women over the age of 20 have a pelvic floor disorder, which often leads to urinary incontinence. Women who are overweight or who have had more than one child are at an increased risk.

The researcher found that low vitamin D levels predicted pelvic floor disorders, even in younger women and that urinary incontinence was twice as likely in vitamin D deficient women compared to women with higher vitamin D levels.

The authors concluded:

“Our findings suggest that treatment of vitamin D insufficiency and deficiency in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women could improve pelvic muscle strength, with a possible reduction in the prevalence of pelvic floor disorders, including urinary incontinence.”

I recommend getting your Vitamin D3 checked. My personal daily intake is 5000 IU. I use the vitamin D3 from Metagenics. Order at www.DrJeffreyTucker.meta-ehealth.com 

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Spinal Manipulation On Strength And the Basal Tonus of Female Pelvic Floor Muscles

 de Almeida BS, Sabatino JH, Giraldo PC.

Department of Gynecology, UNICAMP (The State University of Campinas), Campinas, SP, Brazil. bertasna@yahoo.com.br

OBJECTIVE: Spinal manipulation with high-velocity and low-amplitude (HVLA) manipulation is frequently used for the treatment of lumbopelvic pain; however, the effect on the pelvic floor has been poorly studied in the past. The objective of this study was to quantify the intravaginal pressure (IVP) and the basal perineal tonus (BPT), measured in terms of pressure, before and after the HVLA manipulation in patients without neuromuscular and skeletal dysfunctions.

METHODS: In this experimental, noncontrolled, nonrandomized study, IVP was obtained through a perineometer introduced into the volunteers’ vagina while in dorsal horizontal decubitus. Forty young, healthy university volunteer women with no history of vaginal delivery participated. All voluntary contractions of the perineal muscles were measured in 3 different ways: phasic perineal contraction (PPC), tonic perineal contraction, and perineal contraction associated to accessory muscles. New pressure measurements were obtained immediately after the HVLA manipulation on the volunteers’ sacrum. The pressures were registered and transcribed directly to a personal computer with specific software.

RESULTS: The average IVPs obtained in millimeters of mercury before and after the HVLA manipulation were 56.01 (+/-25.54) and 64.65 (+/-25.63) for PPC, 445.90 (+/-186.84) and 483.14 (+/-175.29) for tonic perineal contraction, and 65.62 (+/-26.56) and 69.37 (+/-25.26) for perineal contraction associated to accessory muscles, respectively. There was significant statistical variation only for PPC (P = .0020) values. The BPT increased regardless of the type of contraction (P < .05).

CONCLUSION: High-velocity and low-amplitude manipulation of the sacrum was associated with an increase of PPC and of BPT in women who had no associated osteoarticular diseases. These preliminary discoveries could be helpful in the future study of the treatment of women with perineal hypotony. (c) 2010 National University of Health Sciences. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Protect your joints from age-related degeneration

As we age joints tend to become less flexible, full-range movement becomes more difficult and pain and stiffness ever more apparent. 
Nutrients of particular importance for healthy aging joints includes:
• Vitamin C for collagen formation;
• Omega-3 oils (from nuts, seeds, oily fish and wheat germ) for anti-inflammatory effects;
• Sulphur-containing amino acids (from some vegetables, meat, poultry, fish and dairy products) for joint cartilage health;
• Bioflavinoids (from all fruit and vegetables, and buckwheat) for anti-inflammatory effects and improved local circulation;
• Antioxidants (selenium and vitamin E) for protection against the damaging ‘free radicals’ that proliferate in the body with age;
• Zinc and copper for a range of protective benefits.
• Glucosamine sulphate for reducing pain and stiffness, increasing mobility and offsetting the joint space narrowing that typically occurs in degenerative conditions;
• Kaprex , which provides joint relief and elasticity;

In summary, to help prevent chronic joint pain and stiffness, nutritional supplements can make a big difference.

To get all of the above ingredients I recommend taking Wellness Essential JOINT FOCUS by Metagenics( www. drjeffreytucker.meta-ehealth.com)

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Resistance Exercise

Resistance Exercise Promotes Release of Neurotrophic Factors

June 4, 2010 (Baltimore, Maryland) — New research presented at the
American College of Sports Medicine 57th Annual Meeting shows that
circulating levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) increase
after intense resistance training, which might explain why exercise is
effective at protecting and improving brain function.

The incidence of neurodegenerative diseases, like Alzheimer’s disease,
is lower in people who participate in endurance exercise on a regular
basis, noted Joshua Yarrow, PhD, lead researcher and postdoctoral
associate at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/723059?sssdmh=dm1.620579&src=nldne&uac=15003AN

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Weight Loss Tips

1. Find an “accountability” partner. It helps if that person is supportive, positive, and will encourage you in your weight loss efforts. Often times you will want to look outside of your family members and best friends for support. Tell your accountability partner what you’re doing, what your goals are and how they can best support you. Talk to them on a regular basis and anytime you are struggling and need support.

2. Be as intentional as you can by telling people what you are doing. Don’t be afraid to tell people about your intention.

3. Begin working out even if it is only 10-15 minutes per day. If you are already working out regularly, it’s time to step up the intensity again! In the morning, do a 4 minute circuit of squats and lunges. Add a 4 minute circuit of some push ups, bridges and abs. Then add another 2 minutes of running in place or jumping jacks. In the evening do the same thing. So that’s 10 minutes of work in the morning and 10 minutes in the evening for a total of 20 minutes of workout time. Keep the exercises simple – don’t feel like you have to be at the gym to workout. Do it at home or at work.

4. Go shopping. This is an important part of the process. Find an outfit that you really, really want, and find it in the size that you want to be. Buy it in the size that you will be wearing when you lose all the weight you want to lose (not just the 10 pounds). So if you want to lose 25 pounds total, buy it in the size you’ll be wearing after your 25 pound weight loss. Make sense?

When you get the outfit, I want you to hang it up somewhere you can see it every day, like on your bathroom door or closet door. If you can’t buy the outfit today, find a picture of it in a magazine or on the internet, cut it out and post it somewhere where you will see it everyday, like your bathroom mirror or refrigerator.

5. Make one simple nutrition change this week. Make sure it is simple and easy to do. Cut out bread, a muffin or a bagel! Drinking 2 sodas a day? Cut down to 1. Skipping breakfast every day? Pledge to make a protein shake for breakfast 3 times per week. Add a glass of water or an extra vegetable serving to your diet.

Now what I want you to do is to leave a comment and tell me what outfit you’re going to buy and what nutrition change you’re making. I can’t wait to hear what you come up with!

If you have read this far I know you are serious. I love that you have a goal, but I need you to dig way deeper. If fitting into your outfit was so important, you would have done it by now, right? Guys, you need this too. Most of you have a belly to lose. Are you feeling good enough to go shirtless? I need you to ask yourself “Why? is it important for you to lose weight (or go shirtless) and look amazing in that outfit. Take out a piece of paper or your journal and a pen and keep asking yourself the question Why? Your first response may be simple, “I want to look good for my significant other”. “Why” is this important? Keep asking yourself “why” over and over again until you come up with a reason that is really emotional for you, one that will keep you going when you want to give up.

Sit down with a blank piece of paper or a journal and a pen. Go to a room where you won’t be disturbed. Now imagine yourself wearing your favorite outfit that you picked out. Imagine how you feel wearing that outfit or going shirtless. Who do you see? What compliments do you get? If you’re wearing a little black dress, maybe you’re at a party. If you’re in your swimsuit, you might be on a beautiful beach. What are you wearing? A fitted shirt to show off your new lean physique? Who is looking at you and noticing you. Write down exactly what it is like to wear your outfit, who you’re with, how you feel and what you are doing. Be as specific as possible and write it down in the present tense, as if it is happening now – not the future tense. Take about 10 minutes for this.

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Hormone Replacement Therapy

I was asked how I felt about hormone replacement therapy. I wanted to share the following thoughts with you:
We are born with an excess amount of hormones to ensure survival of our species through reproduction. However, hormones are very powerful and can have very stimulating, excitatory, and proliferative effects within the body. As such, they are treated by the body as toxic and we have evolved mechanisms to detoxify them (these mechanisms in turn rely heavily on support from a healthy diet and lifestyle). Perhaps, as these mechanisms wear (throughout the aging process), the body naturally turns down its production of hormones.

In other words, if aging ensures the survival of our species by (a) clearing out older “models” and making room for new “models” (which in turn allows for continued evolutionary change) and (b) protecting the gene pool from individuals who have become laden with infectious parasites, then perhaps it makes sense for the body to naturally turn down the production of hormones (that would otherwise promote reproductive success and stimulate tissue growth/proliferation) in synchrony with the aging process. If you feel this way, it does not make sense to work against the body’s natural clock using hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

If you feel synthetic or bioidentical hormones are appropriate for you, you should first prepare the body using lifestyle intervention as well as provide the necessary nutrients to support the healthy, downstream detoxification of those hormones (keeping in mind that it can take years of eating properly to “train” the liver to properly detoxify). By the time patients come to see me, most are manifesting symptoms that are reflective of an underlying imbalance caused, over time, by unhealthy lifestyle habits. At this point, patients want immediate and drastic action. Even so, this still does not provide a rationale for long-term hormone replacement therapy.

In my opinion, natural Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) can be used, if necessary in the short-term, and for others the long -term. Some typical conditions I recommend hormone related supplements are to address mood-related issues, fatigue, loss of sex drive, and muscle wasting. Topical creams for vaginal dryness are helpful as well. There is very little scientific evidence to support HRT as a treatment strategy for the chronic conditions that women naturally become more susceptible to after menopause (diabetes, CVD, osteoporosis, and cognitive decline) and there is certainly no rationale for placing women on HRT indefinitely. The bottom line is that, if your doctor recommends HRT, it is incumbent on him/her to make sure that those hormones are being properly metabolized and cleared from the body.

The long-term treatment strategy in post menopausal women should focus on:
Manage stress and nurture the adrenal glands in order to support continued hormone production.
Provide healthy, estrogen-mimicking support using phytoestrogens like soy isoflavones.
Use diet and lifestyle intervention to address chronic inflammatory conditions (diabetes, CVD, osteoporosis, and cognitive decline) that women naturally become more susceptible to after menopause (keeping in mind that insulin resistance plays such a significant role in perpetuating this inflammation).

I hope this helps!

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