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Ursolic Acid Increases Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat and Decreases Diet-Induced Obesity, Glucose Intolerance and Fatty Liver Disease. - Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on April 8, 2021 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)


Skeletal muscle Akt activity stimulates muscle growth and imparts resistance to obesity, glucose intolerance and fatty liver disease. We recently found that ursolic acid increases skeletal muscle Akt activity and stimulates muscle growth in non-obese mice. Here, we tested the hypothesis that ursolic acid might increase skeletal muscle Akt activity in a mouse model of diet-induced obesity. We studied mice that consumed a high fat diet lacking or containing ursolic acid. In skeletal muscle, ursolic acid increased Akt activity, as well as downstream mRNAs that promote glucose utilization (hexokinase-II), blood vessel recruitment (Vegfa) and autocrine/paracrine IGF-I signaling (Igf1). As a result, ursolic acid increased skeletal muscle mass, fast and slow muscle fiber size, grip strength and exercise capacity. Interestingly, ursolic acid also increased brown fat, a tissue that shares developmental origins with skeletal muscle. Consistent with increased skeletal muscle and brown fat, ursolic acid increased energy expenditure, leading to reduced obesity, improved glucose tolerance and decreased hepatic steatosis. These data support a model in which ursolic acid reduces obesity, glucose intolerance and fatty liver disease by increasing skeletal muscle and brown fat, and suggest ursolic acid as a potential therapeutic approach for obesity and obesity-related illness.



Ursolic acid is a lipophilic pentacyclic triterpenoid that contributes to the waxy coats on apples, other fruits, and many herbs, including some folkloric herbal medicines for diabetes [1]–[4]. We recently identified ursolic acid in a screen for small molecule inhibitors of skeletal muscle atrophy [5]. In that study, we determined the effects of fasting and spinal cord injury on skeletal muscle mRNA levels in humans, and used that information to generate unbiased mRNA expression signatures of human skeletal muscle atrophy. We then used these signatures to query the Connectivity Map [6] for compounds whose expression signatures negatively correlated with the signatures of human muscle atrophy. Out of >1300 compounds in the Connectivity Map, ursolic acid emerged as the most likely inhibitor of muscle atrophy.


To test the hypothesis that ursolic acid might inhibit muscle atrophy, we studied mice that had been fasted or undergone surgical muscle denervation, and found that ursolic acid reduced muscle atrophy [5]. We then investigated ursolic acid's effect in the absence of an atrophy stimulus by adding ursolic acid to standard mouse chow for 5 weeks. In that setting, ursolic acid induced skeletal muscle hypertrophy [5]. Since the protein kinase Akt (also known as PKB) inhibits muscle atrophy and promotes muscle hypertrophy [7]–[13], we examined ursolic acid's effect on Akt. We found that ursolic acid increased Akt activity in mouse skeletal muscle and in cultured C2C12 skeletal myotubes [5]. In myotubes, ursolic acid increased Akt activity at least in part by enhancing ligand-dependent activation of the insulin receptor and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) receptor.


In addition to causing muscle hypertrophy, genetic interventions that activate Akt specifically in skeletal muscle also increase energy expenditure, reduce adiposity and blood glucose, and impart resistance to diet-induced obesity, glucose intolerance and fatty liver disease [8], [9]. Similarly, we found that ursolic acid reduced adiposity and blood glucose in non-obese mice [5], and others found that ursolic acid reduces total body weight, white fat, glucose intolerance and hepatic steatosis in high fat-fed mice [14], [15]. Based on these considerations, we hypothesized that ursolic acid might increase skeletal muscle Akt activity in a mouse model of diet-induced obesity, leading to muscle hypertrophy, increased energy expenditure and thus, reduced obesity, glucose intolerance and fatty liver disease. In the current study, we tested this hypothesis, and found that ursolic acid increases not only skeletal muscle, but also another tissue that opposes diet-induced obesity, brown fat.........

Indexed for NIH & PLOS ONE by Dragonfly Kingdom Library


Endocrine disruptors alter social behaviors and indirectly influence social hierarchies via changes in body weight. - Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on April 5, 2021 at 4:30 AM Comments comments (0)


In humans, the causal link between socioeconomic status (SES) and body weight (BW) is bidirectional, as chronic stress associated with low SES may increase risk of obesity and excess weight may worsen career opportunities resulting in lower SES. We hypothesize that environmental factors affecting BW and/or social stress might reprogram physiological and social trajectories of individuals.

To analyze interactions between BW and social behaviors in mice perinatally exposed to one of several environmental endocrine disruptors.

CD-1 mice were fed 0.2 mg/kg BW/day tetrabromobisphenol-A (TBBPA), 2,2,4,4-tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-47), bisphenol S (BPS), or oil (vehicle) from pregnancy day 8 through postpartum day 21. Three male offspring (triad) from each litter were housed together until week 15 and subjected to a Sociability Test and Tube Tests. Cages were then rearranged so that animals of the same social rank from the four exposure groups were housed together in tetrads. Social hierarchy in tetrads was again analyzed by Tube Tests.

In Sociability Tests, the mean velocity of all exposed animals increased when they encountered a stranger mouse and less time was spent with conspecifics. BW and social dominance of animals in triads and tetrads were inversely associated. BDE-47 and BPS caused transient decreases in BW.

Developmental exposure to environmental xenobiotics shifted behavior towards increased anxiety and decreased interest in social interactions. Our mouse model reproduces negative associations between social hierarchy status and BW. These results suggest that manipulation of BW by endocrine disruptors may affect social ranking.

Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12940-015-0051-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Keywords: Body weight, Social status, Social dominance, Sociability, Endocrine disruption, Tetrabromobisphenol-A, TBBPA, 2,2,4,4-tetrabromodiphenyl ether, BDE-47, Bisphenol S, BPS

Featured: Unlimited discounts - Updated List of Brand Ambassadorships/Modeling Partnerships. -- Nature Yogi DJ Producer Designer Model Marco Andre of Dragonfly Kingdom International Service Agency

Posted on April 4, 2021 at 6:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Here is my current list of Brands I work with along with Brand Website/Personalized Link to Brand Website & Discount Code you enter before checking out:

Brute Impact:

( Marcus25_ )



The Great North Apparel:


Salvatore Franco:

Palma Aloha:

Valerio Sunglass/Accessories:



( 25MARCUS )

Bizaare Essentials:


Madera Outdoor Gear & Camping:


We Are The World:


Happy Earth Apparel:


Hip Camp: $10 off your camping trip


#Fervora Influencer Agency:

Sign up to host campers using my referral code MARCOAC92BFE and we’ll both get $100 cash when you receive your first camper. Ask me if you have any questions about #Hipcamp :) https://www.hipcamp.com/r/marcoac92bfe

For all other Brand Affiliations plus my own Brand Design visit Arnico Apparel at
https://www.DragonflyKingdomLibrary.org/arnico or the appropriate Blog Category. 


Here's a few Featured Affiliate Brands: 

Andrew Christian International


Carribean Joe:


Tommy Hilfiger:




JJ Malibu:

Nature Yogi DJ Producer Designer Model Marco Andre

Testosterone increases renal anti-aging klotho gene expression via the androgen receptor-mediated pathway. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on March 20, 2021 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)


Gender is known to be associated with longevity and oestrogen administration induced longevity-associated gene expression is one of the potential mechanisms underlying the benefits of oestrogen on lifespan, whereas the role of testosterone in the regulation of longevity-associated gene expressions remains largely unclear. The klotho gene, predominantly expressed in the kidney, has recently been discovered to be an aging suppressor gene. In the present study, we investigated the regulatory effects of testosterone on renal klotho gene expression in vivo and in vitro. In testosterone-administered mouse kidney and NRK-52E cells, increased klotho expression was accompanied by the up-regulation of the nuclear androgen receptor (AR). Overexpression of AR enhanced the expression of klotho mRNA and protein. Conversely, testosterone-induced klotho expression was attenuated in the presence of flutamide, an AR antagonist. A reporter assay and a chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay demonstrated that AR directly binds to the klotho promoter via androgen response elements (AREs) which reconfirmed its importance for AR binding via the element mutation. In summary, our study demonstrates that testosterone up-regulates anti-aging klotho together with AR expression in the kidney in vivo and in vitro by recruiting AR on to the AREs of the klotho promoter.

Indexed for NIH Pubmed by Dragonfly Kingdom Library


Getting Big And Strong On A Vegan Diet. Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 13, 2020 at 6:25 PM Comments comments (0)

There is no way that you can get big and strong on a vegetarian diet! I used to hear this all the time from my meat-eating friends. I say, used to as I never hear it anymore from people that know me or from people that have seen my photos on my website. Yes my friends, you can in fact get bigger and stronger on a vegetarian diet. You can even do it on a vegan diet (no animal products whatsoever).


How To Get Started

When I was fifteen I read an interview with Harley Flannagan (lead singer of the legendary NYC hardcore band, the Cro-mags) in which he stated that he became a vegetarian to lead a more peaceful life and that one cannot talk about peace when they have a steak on their plate, as an animal died in agonizing pain to end up there. That really struck a cord with me and got me thinking about the thousands of animals that suffer daily on factory farms. Next, I visited Kenya with my parents and experienced a feeling of oneness with the animals over there.


I realized that I did not want to contribute to the unnecessary suffering of other beings and I knew that I needed to make some changes. Finally, I saw a movie called "The Fly II" in which a golden retriever is mutilated in an experiment gone bad. That got me thinking about how animals are abused in labs and further solidified the new direction that I was taking. In addition, to giving up meat, I decided that I would make sure to purchase products such as: toothpaste, shampoo, soap etc that were not tested on animals.


I gave up meat gradually. I stated off by giving up all meat except fish. Then I gave up fish, but continued to eat eggs and dairy. Once I realized that most eggs and dairy products came from animals that lived miserable lives on factory farms, I gave up all animal products. That was ten years ago and I have never looked back. While I am an ethical vegan, there is no doubt in mind that a vegan diet is healthy and that I can get everything that my body need for my intense lifestyle. Regardless, like any other diet, planning is required.


The number one thing that people always ask me is where do I get my protein. Many vegans that I have met make the mistake of thinking that you do not need much protein at all. I even had one guy tell me that only 5% of one's diet should come from protein. Of course this guy looked like Don Knots and would be blown off like kite if a strong wind came by. I had another guy tell me that I can get protein from a cucumber and that I should not even worry about it.


Of course, this guy was not in shape either and was in no position to give me nutrition advice. We have to be much more sensible than that. Especially, if we expect anyone to give up meat and adopt a vegetarian diet. Telling people that they can get all of the protein that they need from eating spinach and leafy green vegetables is impractical. Just because it works for the gorillas does not mean that it will work for us. Not getting enough protein and thinking that only 5% of your diet needs to be comprised of protein are sure fire ways to be spindly and weak for the rest of your life. Now I am not saying that you need two grams of protein per pound of bodyweight like the bodybuilding magazines state.


That is way too much protein and a case of overkill. For athletes, 0.7 to 1 gram of protein per pound of lean muscle is optimal for increasing strength and size. For example, if you weigh 180lb and have ten percent bodyfat, then you should shoot for 150-160 grams of protein to build more muscle. If you want to maintain your size, then 100-120 will probably be sufficient.


Next, vegans like anyone else need to load up on healthy sources of fat. Without enough fat in your diet, your skin will dry up, your energy will plummet, and you will look like death. Getting 20-30% of your calories from fat is a good way to go. Load up on healthy fats such as: flaxseed oil, olive oil, almonds, walnuts, almond butter, and avocadoes. Also, vegan diets are free of all saturated fats, which is great for the most part. However, some saturated fat is required for optimal health, so get some coconut oil or coconut milk in you diet as well.


Finally, make sure that you eat a variety of food to get a full array of muscle building amino acids. Some examples of good combinations include: black beans and quinoa, lentils and brown rice, almond butter sandwich, rice protein/soy milk shake, green peas and almonds. Have some veggie burgers and other fake meat products from time to time, but make sure that the majority of your diet comes from fresh organic food.



Posted on December 13, 2020 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (0)

The connection between IGF-1—also known as the insulin-like growth factor 1—and the human growth hormone (HGH) for healthy aging is complex.



If excessive levels –low or high– of IGF-1 are present in the body, they could lead to some health problems. Additionally, HGH is generally considered to employ anti-insulin actions, whereas IGF-1 has insulin-like properties. Maintaining relatively low levels of IGF-1 and synergy between HGH and IGF-1 throughout most of one’s adult life is an important factor by which adults can live a healthy lifestyle and experience an optimal aging process.



HGH and IGF-1 play essential roles in childhood growth and continue to serve important metabolic functions in adults. One of the conditions that may affect healthy aging includes low levels of growth hormone presenting in adults. This condition is mainly characterized by increased visceral adiposity, abnormal lipid profiles, decreased quality of life, and other important risk factors.1 Interestingly, HGH deficiency in adults predisposes insulin resistance.2 High doses of HGH treatment have major effects on lipolysis, which plays a crucial role in promoting its anti-insulin effects. On the other hand, IGF-1 acts as an insulin sensitizer that does not exert any direct effect on lipolysis or lipogenesis.3


Unlock the potential of human growth hormone (HGH). Find out how in our white paper.*


Research shows that one’s metabolism slows down with age. A few reasons for this include less physical activity (exercise), muscle loss (sarcopenia), and the normal aging of the organs. Additionally, loss in lean body mass and muscle tissue can be detrimental when it comes to ill adults. Yet HGH has major effects on metabolism. It has been shown that HGH’s potential benefits when it comes to protein metabolism.4 Some of the functions of HGH are facilitated through IGF-1. Administration of HGH induces a rise in circulating IGF-1 that stimulates glucose and amino acid uptake in muscle, which improves muscle protein synthesis.4 In catabolic circumstances, the levels of IGF-1 decrease while its binding proteins increase, leading to a lower local IGF-1 activity and contributing to the decreased insulin sensitivity seen in catabolism.5


The metabolic effects of HGH are, in part, mediated through IGF-1 produced in the liver and in the peripheral tissues influenced by HGH.5 In skeletal muscle, a reduced gene-expression of the HGH-receptor can occur. This reduces the local IGF-1 synthesis, an effect that may be offset by HGH supplementation.* Change in the GH/IGF-1 can possibly counteract through amino acid supplementation.*6,7,8,9 Specific amino acids—such as arginine, lysine, and ornithine—can stimulate HGH release when infused intravenously or administered orally. It has also been demonstrated that glycine is also one of the stimulatory agents inducing the pituitary gland to secrete HGH.8 These are all important amino acids utilized in the growth of HGH.


As specified above, a combination of HGH and IGF-1 has beneficial potential because the decreased insulin sensitivity induced by HGH can be outbalanced by the addition of IGF-1. In general, HGH increases the binding protein for IGF, and concomitant administration may, therefore, increase the bioavailability of IGF-1 and its effects on the tissues.2,6,7,8,9



Having low levels of IGF-1 in the elderly is linked to developmental changes. Adequate levels of IGF-1 are needed for the maintenance of bone mass, muscle mass, and brain function at later ages.9


In order to extend a patient’s lifespan, the goal should be to maintain a relatively low IGF-1 throughout most of their adult life. Then, once they reach the age of eighty, they should consume enough protein along with the amino acids arginine, lysine, ornithine, and glycine necessary to prevent their IGF-1 level from becoming excessively low.


It is also important to pay attention to their diet to ensure that their IGF-1 levels are favorable throughout their lives.



As previously mentioned above, IGF-1 is a hormone with a similar structure to insulin as well as a cell growth-promoter important for brain development and muscle and bone growth during childhood. HGH from the pituitary gland stimulates IGF-1 production in the liver and IGF-1 levels peak during the teenage years and twenties, but those levels start to decline as one ages.10,11


The intake of protein and amino acids regulates IGF-1 circulating in the body. Animal protein has high levels of all the essential amino acids, thus it can trigger excessive body production of IGF-1, whereas plant protein does not.12,13 Still, if animal protein is not an option, there are other ways to consume these amino acids. Finally, high-glycemic, refined carbohydrates can also raise IGF-1.14



One study, conducted in Europe, found the following averages for IGF-1 levels in healthy patients of different age ranges:15

















Average Serum IGF-1 (ng/ml)















The study reported an average serum IGF-1 level of 200-210 ng/ml, suggesting that this is the typical level for adults on a Western diet.16 The amount of animal products consumed by most Americans drives their IGF-1 into danger quantities (above 200), increasing their risk of other conditions.



Therefore, it is important to keep in mind that low IGF-1 levels also increase the risk of health complications, these levels being generally about 70-80 ng/ml or lower.12,13,14,17 Studies in elderly men (average age 75) have found an increased risk of cardiovascular problems in high IGF-1 groups (approximately 190 ng/ml).12,15,18,19,20,21


By taking all this information into account, most adults must keep IGF-1 below 175 ng/ml or even 150 ng/ml if possible. At the same time, serum IGF-1 levels below 80 ng/ml can be detrimental, especially after the age of 75.22,23


In essence, restricting the consumption of animal protein to maintain a relatively—but not excessively—low IGF-1 is an important objective for optimal aging. Since protein digestion and absorption can decline during the elderly years, adopting a more nutritional diet and lifestyle may be helpful for protein tolerability while aging, along with preventing the excessive lowering of IGF-1 commonly seen with other plant-based diets. To achieve greater micronutrient completeness, patients can add important amino acids like arginine, lysine, ornithine, and glycine, along with other sources of protein to their diets.

Indexed for Davinci Labs by Dragonfly Kingdom Library


A plant-based diet in overweight individuals in a 16-week randomized clinical trial: metabolic benefits of plant protein. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 13, 2020 at 6:15 PM Comments comments (0)


Background and objectives

A plant-based diet is an effective strategy in the treatment of obesity. In this 16-week randomized clinical trial, we tested the effect of a plant-based diet on body composition and insulin resistance. As a part of this trial, we investigated the role of plant protein on these outcomes.


Subjects and methods

Overweight participants (n = 75) were randomized to follow a plant-based (n = 38) or a control diet (n = 37). Dual X-ray Absorptiometry assessed body composition, Homeostasis Model Assessment (HOMA-IR) assessed insulin resistance, and a linear regression model was used to test the relationship between protein intake, body composition, and insulin resistance.



The plant-based vegan diet proved to be superior to the control diet in improving body weight, fat mass, and insulin resistance markers. Only the vegan group showed significant reductions in body weight (treatment effect −6.5 [95% CI −8.9 to −4.1] kg; Gxt, p < 0.001), fat mass (treatment effect −4.3 [95% CI −5.4 to −3.2] kg; Gxt, p < 0.001), and HOMA-IR (treatment effect −1.0 [95% CI −1.2 to −0.8]; Gxt, p = 0.004). The decrease in fat mass was associated with an increased intake of plant protein and decreased intake of animal protein (r = -0.30, p = 0.011; and r = +0.39, p = 0.001, respectively). In particular, decreased % leucine intake was associated with a decrease in fat mass (r = +0.40; p < 0.001), in both unadjusted and adjusted models for changes in BMI and energy intake. In addition, decreased % histidine intake was associated with a decrease in insulin resistance (r = +0.38; p = 0.003), also independent of changes in BMI and energy intake.



These findings provide evidence that plant protein, as a part of a plant-based diet, and the resulting limitation of leucine and histidine intake are associated with improvements in body composition and reductions in both body weight and insulin resistance.



Suboptimal nutrition is a major cause of obesity, chronic disease, and premature death across the nation and worldwide1,2. Certain dietary habits, such as high intakes of sodium and processed meat products and low intakes of fruits and vegetables, are associated with 45.5% of cardio-metabolic deaths in the United States3. Fortunately, research has shown a plant-based vegan diet to be beneficial in improving nutrient intake4, decreasing all-cause mortality, and decreasing risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and coronary heart disease5.


A plant-based vegan diet excludes all animal products and is centered around grains, legumes, vegetables, and fruits. While adequate in macro and micronutrients6, people sometimes question the ability to reach protein requirements on a plant-based vegan diet. A sufficient protein intake is necessary to supply nitrogen and amino acids to our cells to ensure the growth and maintenance of the protein pool in our bodies7. However, a diet based entirely on plants provides all essential amino acids and an adequate quantity of overall protein, even without the use of special food combinations6. Further, the consumption of exclusively plant proteins has been associated with reduction of the concentrations of blood lipids8,9,10,11, obesity12, and cardiovascular disease13,14,15.


The specific composition of dietary protein has been shown to influence the balance of glucagon and insulin activity14, which may play a role in body composition and insulin resistance12. A high intake of branched chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) can increase insulin resistance16. In addition, dietary restriction of sulfur containing amino acids (methionine and cysteine), is associated with a reduction in body weight, adiposity and metabolic changes in both adipose and liver tissues, which enhance insulin sensitivity and energy expenditure17. Plant protein low in sulfur also reduces blood lipids, homocysteine, and blood pressure18,19. Furthermore, low protein diets are also associated with increased life span, especially if the consumed protein is plant derived20.


In this secondary analysis of data from a 16-week randomized clinical trial21, we explore the effects of plant protein, as part of a plant-based diet, on weight control, body composition, and insulin resistance in overweight individuals.

Main findings

This study demonstrated that the quality and quantity of dietary protein from a plant-based vegan diet are associated with improvements in body composition, body weight, and insulin resistance in overweight individuals. A decreased intake of animal protein and an increased intake of plant protein were associated with a decrease in fat mass, by 1.45 and 0.88 kg respectively. Exchanging plant protein for animal protein explains more than half of the reduction in fat mass in the vegan group (2.33 out of 4.3 kg). A large portion of fat mass reduction may be explained by the amino acid composition of plant protein, specifically by decreased leucine intake, which was associated with a decrease in fat mass by 0.82 kg, independent of changes in BMI and energy intake. Additionally, decreased histidine intake was associated with a decrease in insulin resistance, also independent of changes in BMI and energy intake. Finally, decreased intakes of threonine, leucine, lysine, methionine, and tyrosine were each associated with a decrease in insulin resistance. However, these associations were mainly driven by weight loss.


Plant vs. animal protein in weight regulation, body composition, and insulin resistance

Multiple randomized controlled studies have established the effectiveness of plant-based diets for weight loss25,26. Plant-based diets have also been shown to decrease the risk of developing diabetes in additional prospective studies27. The specific role of plant protein in weight regulation and metabolic health is of particular interest. In a study focusing specifically on the association between protein sources and body weight regulation using data from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study, increases in body weight were positively correlated with an increased intake of animal protein, especially in women28. Similarly, in a 2011 observational study, increases in animal protein consumption were found to be positively correlated with increases in BMI, while increases in plant protein intake were negatively associated with changes in BMI29.


Dietary protein triggers release of both insulin and glucagon12. Specifically, a higher intake of essential amino acids can stimulate secretion of insulin and up-regulate insulin like growth factor 1 (IGF-1)12. Essential amino acids are found in greater abundance in animal protein, compared to plant protein. In contrast, a higher intake of non-essential amino acids is associated with down-regulation of insulin secretion and increased glucagon secretion, resulting in stimulation of gluconeogenesis, hepatic lipid oxidation, lipolysis and reduction in both IGF-1 and cholesterol synthesis. Hepatic lipid oxidation promotes appetite control and lowers the respiratory quotient, which may play a role in body weight reduction, and may further be supported by the thermogenic effect of glucagon. Human adipocyte express IGF-1 receptors, thus down-regulation of IGF-1 activity can also promote leanness12. Non-essential amino acids in plant protein promote higher net glucagon activity than an omnivorous diet, promoting weight loss and reduction of LDL-cholesterol12.


The role of specific amino acids in insulin resistance and weight regulation

A 2018 prospective study that included more than 1,200 adults, who were followed-up for a mean of 2.3 years, showed that higher intake of branched chain amino acids (BCAA), especially leucine, can increase insulin resistance. Participants in the highest tertile for leucine intake had a 75% higher risk of developing insulin resistance compared with people in the lowest tertile (OR 1.75; 95% CI 1.09–2.82)16.


Increased serum concentrations of BCAA have been associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes and underlying metabolic abnormalities30,31. High serum BCAA levels activate the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) signaling pathway, leading to inhibition of glucose transport in muscle and fat tissues16. Animal protein from meat and dairy products contains a high percent of leucine. Therefore, these foods may stimulate the mTORC1 pathway, thus contributing to insulin resistance, and obesity32.


Randomized controlled trials have shown that reduced dietary intake of BCAA promote weight loss, reduce adiposity, and improve glycemic control and metabolic health33,34. In our study, the vegan group consumed less than 75% of the control group’s daily grams per day of BCAA. Our data also show that reduced dietary intake of leucine, in particular, was associated with decreased fat mass and reduced insulin resistance.


Additionally, our results suggest that a decreased intake of histidine, leucine, threonine, lysine, methionine, and tyrosine were all associated with a decrease in HOMA, with histidine being the only one having a significant association independent on changes in BMI and energy intake. The vegan group reduced both its absolute and relative intake of all six of these amino acids. The significant decrease in the consumption of sulfur-containing amino acids, i.e. cysteine and methionine, in the vegan group, is of particular interest. Several studies have shown that diets restricting sulfur-containing amino acids have shown beneficial effects in the prevention of chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease14,17. Dietary restriction of methionine and cysteine without caloric restriction has been associated with reductions in body weight, adiposity, blood levels of insulin, IGF-1, and glucose17, as well as reductions in cardiovascular risk factors including blood lipids, homocysteine, and blood pressure18,19. Our results suggest that reduced intake of methionine through a plant-based diet may correlate with a decrease in both body weight and insulin resistance.


Meeting and exceeding the recommended daily intake on a plant-based diet

Higher animal protein consumption has been associated with increased risk of metabolic disease and mortality. A 2015 study using data from NHANES II reported the link between protein intake and mortality in men and women. Subjects in the high-protein group (consuming 20% or more of daily calories as protein) had a 73-fold increase in risk of diabetes mortality and a 74% increase in relative risk of all-cause mortality20. Our data suggest that both the decreased intake of animal protein and the amino acid composition of the plant-based diet are associated with decreased body fat and reduced insulin resistance.


The United States Department of Agriculture recommends a minimum of 46 g of protein per day for women and 56 g per day for men35. In the current study, all participants in the vegan group exceeded the recommended daily intake of protein and of each individual amino acid. While animal protein is higher in essential amino acids, containing significant amounts of leucine, histidine, threonine, methionine and lysine, consumption of plant protein, which is higher in non-essential amino acids, offers clear metabolic benefits. People following a plant based diet still consume more than 100% of the recommended dietary intake of essential amino acids. The main plant sources of these amino acids are legumes, grains, and vegetables. For example, 2 servings of oatmeal made from 100 g of oats contain 102% of recommended daily intake of tyrosine36.

Indexed for Nature by Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Is Meat Consumption Healthy for You? (The Protein Myth). -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 13, 2020 at 6:15 PM Comments comments (0)

As many of you know by now, I strongly recommend a whole food, plant-based diet to combat cancer. The question I continually get is, “where do you get your protein?”


If you review the protein recommendations of the US government you can use the following equation to get your protein requirement:


Pounds X 4 divided by 10.


My weight is 155 pounds. Therefore 155 X 4 = 620.


620 divided by 10 = 62 grams.


If you use the metric system use kilograms X 0.8.


I eat a strict whole food, plant-based diet (no animal products) and I have checked my protein intake on consecutive days for a whole week and I normally get over 100 grams per day, which in my view is more than my goal.


The average Westerner who eats a lot of meat and dairy products is easily getting 2-3 times the recommended about of protein and this can be harmful to one’s health and especially someone who is combatting cancer. For now, let’s look at some of the negatives of high meat, dairy and protein consumption.


High IGF-1


One of the concerning aspects of high animal protein consumption is that it stimulates the liver to produce a growth promoting hormone called “Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 (IGF-1)” which at higher levels in adults has been shown to be a major instigator of cancer initiation and growth [1,2]. This does not happen when the liver is exposed to incomplete plant proteins. Apparently, because animal protein is a complete protein, it sends a signal to the liver that growth is about to occur, so IGF-1 is manufactured. In studies, meat eaters consistently are shown to have much higher IGF-1 levels compared to vegans.


When we are young our body needs IGF-1 for growth to allow us to become a full grown adult. Our levels normally peak in our late teens, then gradually decline every year as we age. This gradual decline is built into our bodies to help us stay alive, because as we age we also accumulate thousands of DNA mutations. We do not want a stimulus for high cellular growth and replication in the setting of high levels of DNA mutations. This is a device that Nature has built in to protect us from cancer initiation, growth and metastasis.


It is also important to note that since IGF-1 can promote muscle growth, growth hormone has been promoted and prescribed by anti-aging physicians as an anti-aging hormone. However, studies are finding that restoring growth hormone levels to youthful levels in adulthood is not beneficial; in fact it has been found to increase death rates in formerly healthy adults.


High mTOR Activation


Another promoter of cancer growth in the body is the mTOR gene [3]. This gene is a potent promoter of cellular growth and replication (similar to IGF-1) and as we just learned we do not want a growth stimulator in the setting of increasing mutations. Through scientific study we have learned that the amino acid “leucine” is the most powerful stimulator of mTOR. And guess where leucine is found in high levels? You guessed it. There are high levels in all animal products and very low levels in plant foods. Therefore lowering animal products while increasing plant intake, lowers leucine levels, which lowers mTOR activity. This is an effective way to decrease cancer initiation and growth.


Kidney Stress


High animal protein intake also puts inordinate stress on the kidneys and after chronic exposure creates damage to the kidney micro-tubules. Animal protein, but not vegetable protein, causes what is called “kidney hyper-filtration” [4]. This is an inflammatory response in the kidney caused by high levels of sulfur-containing amino acids that are present in animal proteins. When anti-inflammatory drugs are given at the time of animal protein ingestion the hyper-filtration does not occur. This hyper-filtration also does not occur with the ingestion of vegetable protein. Furthermore, high animal protein consumption is extremely acidic which puts additional stress on the kidney while also, in the cancer patient, creating a favorable pH for enzymes like “collagenase” to assist the cancer to progress and metastasize [5].


High Pesticide and Endotoxin Levels


Because all animals are high on the food chain, various retrospective studies always reveal much higher levels of pesticides and heavy metals in the blood and tissue of meat eaters versus vegans. To help you understand this concept, if a grasshopper ate a bunch of pesticide-laden grass, it would absorb those pesticides that would then be dissolved into its fat tissue....something we call “bioaccumulation”. A bird then eats many grasshoppers. The bird’s pesticide levels will now be greater than the grasshopper’s levels. If a human eats a lot of the birds, a chicken for example, the human’s levels will be higher than the chicken’s. A similar situation occurs in the oceans. If you analyze mercury and PCB levels in small fish versus large fish, like tuna, the larger fish will consistently have much higher mercury and PCB levels than the smaller fish.


One of many studies analyzing this bioaccumulation was published in the British Journal of Nutrition and it found that PCB levels were much higher in meat eaters compared to vegans [6]. Similar studies routinely demonstrate this same result... pesticides and heavy metals blood and tissue levels are consistently much higher in meat and dairy consumers.


Animal products also carry viruses like bovine leukemia virus (implicated in 37% of all US breast cancers and also non-Hodgkins lymphoma) and bacterial endotoxins that cannot be destroyed by heat and create much inflammation and negative health issues in the body.


No Fiber


Animal products contain ZERO fiber! 97% of the US population does not get the 30 grams/day of fiber recommended by the US government. This is due to the fact that the average American consumes 50% processed foods, 40% animal products and 10% unrefined plant foods. In a 2010 study, it was found that the average American eats, on average, 1.8 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. And that was allowing French fries and ketchup to be counted as a vegetable!


Fiber has been shown to be critical to creating the right balance in the 30 trillion bacteria that grow in our intestinal tract. These bacteria are many times referred to as “the microbiome”. There are 2 primary groups of bacteria in our GI tract....good Prevotella probiotic bacteria and bad Bacteroides bacteria. There are approximately 500 subspecies in each group. When one is eating at least 30 grams of fiber per day, the good Prevotella probiotic bacteria feed on the fiber, proliferate, and produce short-chain fatty acids which are extremely anti-inflammatory and are said by many experts in the field of immunology to control up to 80% of our immune function.


These short-chain fatty acids also stimulate the FFAR2 receptors on our cells which have a profound control over our metabolism. In rat studies when you feed high concentrations of fiber rich plant food (with no meat) to the rats, they become slim. Conversely, when you feed them high concentrations of animal products (with no plants) they become obese. When we eat primarily processed and animal foods the bad Bacteroides bacteria proliferate and the good probiotic Prevotella bacteria decrease, causing many chronic diseases and weight gain. Conversely, when we eat lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds, the good probiotic Prevotella increase in numbers and the harmful Bacteroides decrease. This latter scenario puts us in a much better position to enjoy maximal health.


No Phytonutrients


This is the most important factor that causes me to recommend limiting animal product consumption. Plants have over 25,000 phytonutrients that have profound antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor effects in the body. Animal products have none of these phytonutrients.


Because of this fact, plants foods have been found to have 63X the antioxidant power compared to animal products. ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) units are the units that we use to measure the ability of foods to neutralize health-damaging free radicals. For those of you who are unfamiliar with free radicals, they are molecules with unpaired electrons that are created daily by our cells in the trillions. These free radicals will seek out another electron to create a neutral electrical charge, however in the process of finding an electron mate, they create thousands of DNA mutations in our lifetime which are at the root of all cancers. Innate intracellular antioxidants (glutathione peroxidase, superoxide dismutase and catalase), along with the antioxidants that we eat, can neutralize most of these free radicals, but the Standard American Diet can easily create free-radical overload. Therefore we must complement our innate intracellular antioxidants with a healthy dose of antioxidants from our food intake.



To demonstrate the difference between plant foods and animal products let’s compare one food (a sweet potato) to a whole day of eating a Standard American Diet.


One sweet potato with a teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of clove is 246 ORAC units. On the other hand, a morning Egg McMuffin, an afternoon Big Mac and an evening steak with parsley would total 44 ORAC units for the entire day! Every morning I drink a morning smoothie with various fruits, freeze dried powders, ground flax seeds and kale. That smoothie has 2,000+ ORAC units. An analysis of 5 Standard American Diet breakfasts revealed anywhere from 8-25 ORAC units for each of these typical American breakfasts. The dissimilarity is mind blowing!


In an interview, Dr. Nikhil Munshi, a famous myeloma genomic scientist, stated that at the time of myeloma diagnosis, a myeloma patient’s cancer cell has approximately 5,000+ mutations at diagnosis and at relapse about 12,000+. Therefore minimizing the number of mutations is critical for any cancer patient to help them to stay in remission. It is also extremely important for those trying to avoid cancer in the first place.




We all know that eating high cholesterol foods leads to high cholesterol blood levels which then leads to cardiovascular disease. This fact has been validated in thousands of studies over the past 50 years. And what is the only kind of food that contains cholesterol? You guessed it....animal products.


Cholesterol, however, does not only affect the cardiovascular system, it also has a significant effect on cancer. Many of us have heard that cancer needs an enormous amount of sugar to maintain itself due to the fact that it uses a very crude fermentation method of energy production called “Warburg’s aerobic glycolysis”. This method of energy production takes one molecule of glucose and creates only 2 ATP energy molecules. Our normal cells, on the other hand, create 36 ATP molecules from one glucose molecule. Therefore, cancer needs a prodigious amount of glucose just to maintain itself.


There are, however, other nutritional pathways that cancer can use. In Jane McLelland’s excellent and heavily-researched book How to Starve Cancer she demonstrates, through careful analysis of the scientific literature, how cancer can also use a cholesterol pathway and a glutamine (amino acid) pathway for energy production. In fact, some cancers like prostate, colon and breast cancer may even prefer the cholesterol pathway. In fact, there are studies that demonstrate that individuals who take statin drugs have much lower rates of the aforementioned cancers. To understand this concept better, I would highly recommend viewing the 5 minute video on nutritionfacts.org entitled Cholesterol Feeds Breast Cancer Cells.


Therefore cancer patients need to keep their total cholesterol level below 150 and their LDL cholesterol below 80. The absolute best way to do that is with a whole food, plant-based diet. If additional help is needed I recommend Chinese Red Yeast. The product that I use is Beni Koji RYR (Douglas Labs) which can be purchased on Amazon. I take 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening. I also take Ubiquinol-QH (Douglas Labs) with it to keep the CoEnzyme Q10 levels from getting to low. This can also be purchased on Amazon. I take 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening.


Heterocyclic Amines


Heterocyclic amines are potentially carcinogenic chemical compounds formed in cooked muscle tissue. Examples of heterocyclic amines include harmane, which may cause essential tremor and PhIP, considered an estrogenic carcinogen that may increase breast cancer risk. Poultry meat appears to have the highest concentration of heterocyclic amines, but muscles are not the only source of these toxins. These carcinogens may be present in eggs, cheese, creatine supplements and cigarette smoke.


There are some measures that those who eat meat can do to reduce the risk of developing cancer. Boiling appears to be the safest cooking method in terms of carcinogen levels. Other foods may also decrease the risk. For example, cruciferous vegetables have been shown to reduce the absorption of heterocyclic amines for as long as 2 weeks after consumption. White and green tea may also be protective. If you don’t eat meat for just one day your levels of PhIP and MelQx will drop to zero in just twenty-four hours. Veggie meat is a safe bet since it contains no muscle tissue.





You can see that meat consumption has many negative health effects. A good culmination of what I have just shared with you was extremely well presented in a study by the National Health Institute and The World Health Organization where they looked at the diets of different countries throughout the world. They studied the percentage of unrefined plant consumption in each country and how it correlated with the percentage of people dying from cancer and cardiovascular disease.


In the United States, for example, the average person eats 10% of their diet in unrefined plant foods and we find that 90% of Americans die of either cancer or heart disease. Conversely, in Laos the average person eats over 90% of their diet in unrefined plant foods and only 5% of people in that country die of cancer and heart disease. In Greece, the average person eats a diet that is 35% unrefined plants and 35% of people die of cancer or heart disease. In this study it is absolutely fascinating how the percentage of plant foods directly correlates with the percentage of people dying from cancer and heart disease. The more plants...the less cancer and heart disease.




1. Werner H, Bruchim I. The insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor as an oncogene. Arch Physiol Biochem 2009; 115:58-71.

2. Chitnis MM, Yuen JS, Protheroe AS et al. The type 1 insulin-like growth factor receptor pathway. Clin Cancer Res 2008; 14:6364-70.

3. Wang Z et al. mTOR co-targeting strategies for head and neck cancer therapy. Cancer Metastasis Rev 2012; Sept;36(3):491-502.

4. Helal I et al. Glomerular hyperfiltration:definitions, mechanisms and clinical implications. Nat Rev Nephrol 2012; Feb;21;8(5):293-300.

5. Huang S et al. Acidic extracellular pH promotes prostate cancer bone metastasis by enhancing PC-3 stem cell characteristics, cell invasiveness and VEGF-induced vasculogenesisof BM-EPCs. Oncol Rep 2016; Oct;36(4):2025-32.

6. Arguin H et al. Impact of adopting a vegan diet or an olestra supplementation on plasma organochlorine concentrations:results from two pilot studies. Br J Nutr 2010; May;103(10):1433-41.



What Are We Putting in Our Food That Is Making Us Fat? Food Additives, Contaminants, and Other Putative Contributors to Obesity. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:55 PM Comments comments (0)


The “chemical obesogen” hypothesis conjectures that synthetic, environmental contaminants are contributing to the global epidemic of obesity. In fact, intentional food additives (e.g., artificial sweeteners and colors, emulsifiers) and unintentional compounds (e.g., bisphenol A, pesticides) are largely unstudied in regard to their effects on overall metabolic homeostasis. With that said, many of these contaminants have been found to dysregulate endocrine function, insulin signaling, and/or adipocyte function. Although momentum for the chemical obesogen hypothesis is growing, supportive, evidence-based research is lacking. In order to identify noxious synthetic compounds in the environment out of the thousands of chemicals that are currently in use, tools and models from toxicology should be adopted (e.g., functional high throughput screening methods, zebrafish-based assays). Finally, mechanistic insight into obesogen-induced effects will be helpful in elucidating their role in the obesity epidemic as well as preventing and reversing their effects.


Keywords: obesity, BPA, bisphenol A, food additives, preservatives, pesticides, plastics, pollutants, contaminants

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Since the industrial revolution, the goals of food technology have predominately been maximizing palatability, optimizing process efficiency, increasing shelf life, reducing cost, and improving food safety (free from harmful viruses, bacteria, and fungi). As such, over 4,000 novel ingredients have entered the food supply, some intentionally (such as preservatives) and some inadvertently (such as bisphenol A, BPA), and there are 1,500 new compounds that enter the market every year [52]. While food processing techniques are also constantly being optimized to minimize toxic compounds and toxicants such as lead, melamine, and aflatoxin, other “non-toxic” additives are not thoroughly tested for their chronic, additive, and/or cumulative effects on human physiology.


Obesity and related chronic disorders are increasing at alarming rates and it is estimated that 86% of Americans will be overweight by 2030 [53]. This trend continues despite increases in awareness, nutritional and behavioral research, the amount of diet foods available, and even gym memberships [54]. Unfortunately, the etiology of obesity and diabetes in regard to biochemical mechanisms is still largely not understood. Treatment and prevention of obesity hinges on our ability to 1) characterize the biochemical pathways that promote obesity, 2) identify what changes in our environment are promoting obesity, and 3) avoid and reverse the effects of the offensive agents and practices. It is crucial that clinicians understand and communicate that most novel food ingredients have not been evaluated for metabolic safety. In this review, we outline what agents have been identified that may be contributing to obesity, describe current methods being used to identify offensive compounds, and identify critical gaps in our methods and body of knowledge.


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The importance of identifying agents that contribute to obesity

There is an abundance of research related to obesity etiology and prevention in regard to decreasing caloric intake and increasing energy expenditure. However, “non-traditional” risk factors are under increased scrutiny for their contributions to the obesity epidemic: emotional stress, sleep deprivation, disruption of normal circadian rhythm, composition of the gut microbiome, oxidative stress, medications such as antidepressants and oral contraceptives, average home temperature, and environmental toxicants [24••,36•,55]. Agents in our food supply have immense potential to affect metabolism due to continuous exposure and potential interactions among multiple compounds. A recently hypothesized factor contributing to the obesity epidemic is our exposure to obesogens, chemicals in our environment that can disrupt metabolism and lead to accumulation of excess fat mass (coined by Grün and Blumberg in 2006 [27]). It is critical that we identify these obesogens in our food supply in order to facilitate obesity prevention and treatment [34].


Unfortunately, many of the obesogenic compounds in our food supply were added deliberately to enhance production instead of being added to enhance nutrition. For example, pesticides are added to ward off insects during farming; BPA is a strong, clear plastic that has ideal properties for making bottles and coating cans; and mono- and diglycerides are added to emulsify the fat and water in foods to achieve a favorable texture. Simple exclusion of these compounds may not be possible until alternatives are developed, but then these novel compounds must be tested. Like pharmaceuticals, thorough testing is time-consuming and expensive.


Obesogen identification and characterization is in its infancy, and much of the scientific evidence supporting the relationship between synthetic compounds and the obesity epidemic is currently weak. Strong, evidence-based scientific support is derived from randomized, controlled trials, ideally cross-over design, that comprise four steps: 1) addition of the compound of interest, 2) observation of an effect, 3) removal of the compound of interest, and 4) disappearance of the effect. However, the bulk of evidence relating environmental contaminants and obesity is derived from epidemiological studies which are correlational by nature. While correlations are important, they are limited in that conclusions about causal relationships are impossible. Well-designed animal studies provide strong evidence within the animal model, but must be confirmed in humans. Cell studies are important for deriving mechanisms that may link certain compounds to obesity, yet provide only weak evidence for the global phenomenon (the obesity epidemic). Thus, we currently do not have any strong evidence that any contaminant, food additive, or ingredient that is “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) causes obesity, which is essential for making confident recommendations and changes in public policy.


It is important to note that in evaluating foods for their contribution to obesity, we may identify ingredients that prevent obesity. For example, some hydrocolloids including guar gum and β-glucan may be able to increase satiety and reduce caloric intake with their bulking properties [56]. Also, anthocyanins (potent color compounds from grapes, purple corn, blueberries, and other plants) may reduce oxidative stress, prevent obesity, and help control diabetes in cell culture, animal models, and humans [57]. Again, not all compounds in a class are equal; for example, although the hydrocolloid guar gum may prevent obesity (mentioned above), another hydrocolloid called carrageenan, found commonly in chocolate milk and ice cream, may contribute to insulin resistance in mice [58].


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What in our food is making us fat?

There are many aspects of the average Western diet that may promote obesity. The macronutrient ratio (fat:carbohydrate:protein), the characteristics of the fat (e.g., diets rich in palmitic acid vs. eicosapentaenoic acid), the characteristics of the carbohydrates (refined vs. whole grain carbohydrates) [2,59], and form of the protein [60] are major concerns and reviewed elsewhere [2,59-63]. In addition, advances in food processing have facilitated consumption of high caloric food that is low in other nutrients (e.g., edible oils, refined grains) [61] as well as increased the glycemic load of common meals [62]. Increased consumption of nutrient-poor added fat, added sugar, added salt, and refined grains may also underlie obesity and co-morbidities in ways that extend beyond energy balance [63]. Baillie-Hamilton announced a well-received hypothesis in 2002 highlighting the potential for environmental compounds in our food to contribute to the obesity epidemic [55]. While the relationship between obesity and food structure is reviewed elsewhere [59-63], herein, we will focus on potential obesogens and obesity-promoting food additives in our foods supply (Table 1)......... https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4101898/

Stay Healthy: How Olive Oil can prevent infection?. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Olive oil contains dozens of phenolic compounds, each with its own unique health benefits. An advantage of these compounds is high bioavailability. Many kinds of research highlight the anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antibacterial and antiviral properties of these compounds.

Infections and infectious diseases are due to viruses, bacteria, parasites, fungi, and various pathogens. When the human body contracts an infection, it relies on the immune system to fight it. Although there are drugs for the treatment of infections, some foods of natural origin, such as olive oil, also provide good results in the prevention and treatment of infections.


In olive oil, there are several polyphenols with antibacterial properties against human pathogens, specifically hydroxytyrosol, and oleuropein, which have also shown to have antiviral properties.


A study, published in National Center for Biotechnology Information in 2019, established that the consumption of extra virgin olive oil promotes good intestinal health.


The fatty acids contained in olive oil

Fatty acids, also known as food lipids, contained in olive oil are involved in the modulation of the immune system and inflammatory processes. Therefore, they offer important anti-inflammatory benefits to prevent and treat various health conditions.


Effects of conjugated linoleic acid and high oleic acid safflower oil in the treatment of children with HPV-induced laryngeal papillomatosis: a randomized, double-blinded and crossover preliminary study

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)


Surgery is the mainstay therapy for HPV-induced laryngeal papillomatosis (LP) and adjuvant therapies are palliative at best. Research revealed that conjugated-linoleic acid (CLA) may improve the outcome of virally-induced diseases. The effects of Clarinol™ G-80 (CLA) and high oleic safflower oil (HOSF) on children with LP (concomitant with surgery) were evaluated.



A randomized, double-blinded, crossover and reference-oil controlled trial was conducted at a South African medical university. Study components included clinical, HPV type/load and lymphocyte/cytokine analyses, according to routine laboratory methods.



Overall: ten children enrolled; eight completed the trial; five remained randomized; seven received CLA first; all treatments remained double-blinded.



Children (4 to 12 years) received 2.5 ml p/d CLA (8 weeks) and 2.5 ml p/d HOSF (8 weeks) with a washout period (6 weeks) in-between. The one-year trial included a post-treatment period (30 weeks) and afterwards was a one-year follow-up period.


Main outcome measures

Changes in numbers of surgical procedures for improved disease outcome, total/anatomical scores (staging system) for papillomatosis prevention/viral inhibition, and lymphocyte/cytokine counts for immune responses between baselines and each treatment/end of trial were measured.



After each treatment all the children were in remission (no surgical procedures); after the trial two had recurrence (surgical procedures in post-treatment period); after the follow-up period three had recurrence (several surgical procedures) and five recovered (four had no surgical procedures). Effects of CLA (and HOSF to a lesser extent) were restricted to mildly/moderately aggressive papillomatosis. Children with low total scores (seven/less) and reduced infections (three/less laryngeal sub-sites) recovered after the trial. No harmful effects were observed. The number of surgical procedures during the trial (n6/available records) was significantly lower [(p 0.03) (95% CI 1.1; 0)]. Changes in scores between baselines and CLA treatments (n8) were significantly lower: total scores [(p 0.02) (95% CI −30.00; 0.00)]; anatomical scores [(p 0.008) (95% CI −33.00: -2.00)]. Immune enhancement could not be demonstrated.



These preliminary case and group findings pave the way for further research on the therapeutic potential of adjuvant CLA in the treatment of HPV-induced LP.


A novel antiviral formulation inhibits a range of enveloped viruses. medium chain saturated entities including capric, lauric, myristic and long chain unsaturated oleic, linoleic and linolenic acids were anti-viral. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Some free fatty acids derived from milk and vegetable oils are known to have potent antiviral and antibacterial properties. However, therapeutic applications of short to medium chain fatty acids are limited by physical characteristics such as immiscibility in aqueous solutions. We evaluated a novel proprietary formulation based on an emulsion of short chain caprylic acid, ViroSAL, for its ability to inhibit a range of viral infections in vitro and in vivo. In vitro, ViroSAL inhibited the enveloped viruses Epstein-Barr, measles, herpes simplex, Zika and orf parapoxvirus, together with Ebola, Lassa, vesicular stomatitis and SARS-CoV-1 pseudoviruses, in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Evaluation of the components of ViroSAL revealed that caprylic acid was the main antiviral component; however, the ViroSAL formulation significantly inhibited viral entry compared with caprylic acid alone. In vivo, ViroSAL significantly inhibited Zika and Semliki Forest Virus replication in mice following the inoculation of these viruses into mosquito bite sites. In agreement with studies investigating other free fatty acids, ViroSAL had no effect on norovirus, a non-enveloped virus, indicating that its mechanism of action may be via surfactant disruption of the viral envelope. We have identified a novel antiviral formulation that is of great interest for prevention and/or treatment of a broad range of enveloped viruses.


1.1 Introduction

The antimicrobial properties of fatty acids have been extensively reported in the literature (for review, see Thormar et al. (Thormar and Hilmarsson, 2007) and (Churchward et al., 2018). Previously, (Thormar et al., 1987) demonstrated the antiviral effects of 14 different free fatty acids and lipid extracts from human milk against vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), herpes simplex virus (HSV) and visna virus revealed that short chain saturated fatty acids (butyric, caproic and caprylic) together with long chain saturated fatty acids (palmitic and stearic) had no or very little antiviral activity, whereas medium chain saturated entities including capric, lauric, myristic and long chain unsaturated oleic, linoleic and linolenic acids were anti-viral, albeit at different concentrations. Another study (Hilmarsson et al., 2005) reported similar trends in the antiviral activity of six medium chain fatty acids together with their alcohol and mono-glyceride derivatives against herpes simplex viruses 1 and 2. In contrast, Dichtelmuller et al (2002) reported that caprylic acid had antiviral activity against enveloped viruses including human immunodeficiency virus, bovine viral diarrhoea virus, Sindbis virus and pseudorabies virus (Dichtelmuller et al., 2002, Pingen et al., 2016). Studies investigating the antiviral properties of whole milk reported no antiviral properties of fresh human milk, whereas milk that had been stored at 4°C possessed potent antiviral activity against several viruses in vitro. Refrigeration disrupts the milk fat globule membrane allowing ingress of milk serum lipase which results in hydrolysis of milk fat triglyceride (Thormar et al., 1987, Isaacs et al., 1990). It was concluded that release of fatty acids from milk triglycerides in stored milk, and that recovered from neonatal (achlorhydric) stomachs, was responsible for generating antiviral factor(s) (Thormar et al., 1987).


We investigated the effect of a specifically formulated emulsion of free fatty acids, ViroSAL, on infectivity of enveloped and non-enveloped viruses. Caprylic acid delivered in the ViroSAL emulsion exhibited significant anti-viral effects. A range of enveloped viral infection systems was utilized, and complete inhibition of viral infection was observed without any evidence of cytotoxicity. ViroSAL had no effect on the infectivity of a non-enveloped virus, norovirus, which is in agreement with previous studies demonstrating that free fatty acids are ineffective against non-enveloped viruses (Thormar et al., 1987, Kohn et al., 1980). Furthermore, ViroSAL inactivated the enveloped mosquito-borne viruses Semliki Forest virus (SFV) and Zika virus (ZIKV) in vitro. Prophylactic topical treatment of viral infection in mosquito bites with ViroSAL inhibited local replication and dissemination of SFV and plasma levels of ZIKV in mice. Transmission electron microscopy analysis indicated that ViroSAL disrupts orf parapoxvirus envelope integrity, with higher concentrations completely disrupting virion morphology. These data indicate that ViroSAL has antiviral activity against a range of enveloped viruses in vitro and in vivo.


How Do Monounsaturated Fats Help You to Lose Belly Fat? -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Stubborn belly fat can make it hard to fit into your jeans and uncomfortable to carry around. Choosing to add monounsaturated fats into a balanced diet will help promote fat loss through your midsection. Include foods that are high in monounsaturated fats into your daily meal plan to help to burn unwanted fat.



Burn Belly Fat

Belly fat can be banished when you fill your diet with monounsaturated fats. The March 2007 issue of the "Journal For Diabetes Care" explained that eating a source of monounsaturated fatty acids with each meal of your day will help your body burn fat from the stomach area. Monounsaturated fats help to increase your basal metabolic rate allowing your body to burn fat quicker.



The "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" published a study in April 2009 that found eating monounsaturated fats increase satiety unlike saturated fats. Monounsaturated fats will help keep you full and satisfied longer. This will help prevent over-eating, which will help you restrict your calories for weight loss. Add olive oils to your pasta or avocados to your sandwich to help you include extra monounsaturated fats to your meals.



Almonds are a healthy source of monounsaturated fats. The Almond Board of California explains that including about 1 oz. of almonds daily will help to keep your metabolism elevated. Olive oil and avocado are also foods filled with monounsaturated fats. These fats will help you burn belly fat when eaten in moderation. Portion sizing is key because these foods can be high in calories. Limit the amounts you consume to 10 almonds or 1/2 an avocado for fat burning results.



Stubborn belly fat can be decreased when you incorporate exercise to your healthy eating plan. Cardio training most days of the week for 30 minutes will help you melt off body fat. Weight training should be done three days a week to increase your lean muscle, which will help your body burn more calories during the day. Also target training your midsection will help to whittle away your waistline.

Indexed for Livestrong by Dragonfly Kingdom Library


Effects of Different Dietary Fatty Acids on Human Energy Balance, Body Weight, Fat Mass, and Abdominal Fat. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Effects of Different Dietary Fatty Acids on Human Energy Balance, Body Weight, Fat Mass, and Abdominal Fat

Sze Yen Tan, in Nutrition in the Prevention and Treatment of Abdominal Obesity, 2014


Monounsaturated Fats

The effects of increased MUFA intake on body weight and body composition were investigated using a within-subject crossover and a randomized controlled experimental design (Table 36.1). In one crossover study, 16 adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) received two test diets, one high in carbohydrate and another high in MUFA (from olive oil), for 3 months per diet (separated by a 1-month washout period). Total body fat mass decreased after the intervention periods but was not significantly different between the two diets. However, there appeared to be a trend of different fat mass loss patterns: participants lost upper body fat with the MUFA diet but gained upper body fat slightly during the high-carbohydrate diet. When examined as a ratio of upper-to-lower body fat mass, the high-carbohydrate diet induced a significantly higher ratio than the high-MUFA diet (P < 0.01) [101]. A more recent crossover study that fed 11 insulin-resistant adults high-SFA, high-MUFA, and high-carbohydrate diets in a random order for 28 days each also failed to document additional effects of increased MUFA intake on body weight and fat mass loss. However, the MUFA-rich diet did prevent upper body fat accumulation that was induced by the high-carbohydrate diet. Consequently, the upper-to-lower body fat ratio was significantly higher in that diet group [102]. Similar to the aforementioned studies, one study documented greater upper body fat loss after following a high-MUFA diet (vs. a high-SFA diet) for 4 weeks [103]. This study also recorded significant losses in body weight and total body fat mass, which was not found in the other two studies. Differences in the study populations may explain the contradictory observations regarding total body fat mass loss: studies that included adults with T2DM or insulin resistance reported no additional benefits of MUFA on body weight and fat mass, while studies that recruited healthy male adults did. Impaired fatty acid oxidation has been previously reported in adults with T2DM [104,105].


The randomized controlled, parallel-arm studies that tested the effects of MUFA on body weight and body composition are limited, and were conducted using a weight loss paradigm. In one study, 57 overweight and obese adults were randomly assigned to follow a low-fat, high-protein (30% fat, 35% protein) or a high-fat, standard-protein (45% fat high in MUFA from mixed nuts and canola oil and 18% protein) diet [106]. During the first 12 weeks of this trial, energy restriction was prescribed to promote weight loss; this was followed by an energy balance period of 4 weeks. This study did not find significant differences in body weight and fat mass loss between the two diets. The lack of effects of MUFA in this trial may be due to (1) the simultaneous manipulation of two dietary components (e.g. protein and fat); (2) the absence of a proper control group; (3) subtle acute physiological effects of MUFA that failed to translate into clinical observations; or (4) adaptation of the body to increased dietary MUFA during the study period. However, these possibilities are yet to be evaluated.


Another randomized controlled trial compared the weight- and fat-mass-reducing effects of a high-MUFA (from almonds) vs. a high-carbohydrate energy-restricted diet for 24 weeks [107]. Like the previous study, the two intervention diets differed in more than one aspect: the MUFA diet contained higher total fat and lower carbohydrate (39% fat, 32% carbohydrate) than the high-carbohydrate diet (19% fat, 53% carbohydrate). In this study, greater reductions in weight (−18% vs. −11%), fat mass (−30% vs. 20%), and waist circumference (an indicator of abdominal fat; −14% vs. −9%) were observed in the high-MUFA group, although it should be pointed out that these superior clinical outcomes may not be attributable to MUFA alone. Almonds (the vehicle of MUFA used in this study) influence energy balance by promoting satiety [108,109] and dietary compensation [110–112], and the absorption of dietary fat from almonds is lower than previously thought [113]. In summary, the presence of confounding factors in the intervention studies limits the ability to draw conclusions as to whether MUFA has therapeutic effects on body weight and total fat mass reduction. More longer-term and better-controlled intervention trials are therefore warranted.

Indexed for Science Direct by Dragonfly Kingdom Library


Monounsaturated Fat Rich Diet Prevents Central Body Fat Distribution and Decreases Postprandial Adiponectin Expression Induced by a Carbohydrate-Rich Diet in Insulin-Resistant Subjects. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (0)

OBJECTIVE— Central obesity is associated with insulin resistance through factors that are not fully understood. We studied the effects of three different isocaloric diets on body fat distribution, insulin sensitivity, and peripheral adiponectin gene expression.


RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS— Eleven volunteers, offspring of obese type 2 diabetic patients with abdominal fat deposition, were studied. These subjects were considered insulin resistant as indicated by Matsuda index values <4 after an oral glucose tolerance test, and they maintained A1C <6.5% without therapeutic intervention. All subjects underwent three dietary periods of 28 days each in a crossover design: 1) diet enriched in saturated fat (SAT), 2) diet rich in monounsaturated fat (MUFA) (Mediterranean diet), and 3) diet rich in carbohydrates (CHOs).


RESULTS— Weight, body composition, and resting energy expenditure remained unchanged during the three sequential dietary periods. Using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry we observed that when patients were fed a CHO-enriched diet, their fat mass was redistributed toward the abdominal depot, whereas periphery fat accumulation decreased compared with isocaloric MUFA-rich and high-SAT diets (ANOVA P < 0.05). Changes in fat deposition were associated with decreased postprandial mRNA adiponectin levels in peripheral adipose tissue and lower insulin sensitivity index values from a frequently sampled insulin-assisted intravenous glucose tolerance test in patients fed a CHO-rich diet compared with a MUFA-rich diet (ANOVA P < 0.05).


CONCLUSIONS— An isocaloric MUFA-rich diet prevents central fat redistribution and the postprandial decrease in peripheral adiponectin gene expression and insulin resistance induced by a CHO-rich diet in insulin-resistant subjects.

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The functional properties of safflower oil can be used to treat skin infections, bone related disorders, menopause and atherosclerosis.

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:05 PM Comments comments (0)


Safflower oil have been reviewed for nutraceutical applications.


Good stability index allows encapsulation of safflower oil in functional foods.


Recently extraction techniques of safflower oil have been reviewed.


Summary of recent findings related to bone health is reviewed.


Applications of safflower oil towards functional foods development is reviewed.





Safflower is a multiple purpose crop generally grown for oil production. The safflower oil is considered to be a better oil since it contains higher amount of oleic and linoleic acids than other oil seed crops. Safflower oil has numerous applications in food, cosmetics, pharmaceutical and feed industry. An added advantage of safflower oil is lower cost of production thus can become an alternate option for those who cannot afford to buy olive and other functional oils.


Scope and approach

This manuscript provides a comprehensive review on critical aspects of pharmacological and nutritional applications of safflower oil. A higher antioxidant activity renders better stability of safflower seed oil over extended storage period. Moreover, a higher content of omega six fatty acids makes it a healthier choice for consumption especially where olive oil being the only but costly choice. There has been a surge in developing innovative and efficient methods to extract safflower oil including super critical fluid and enzymatic extraction techniques.


Key findings and conclusions

A higher stability index makes it possible to encapsulate safflower oil or used it as a carrier in bioactive functional ingredient delivery systems. The functional properties of safflower oil can be used to treat skin infections, bone related disorders, menopause and atherosclerosis. Composition and distribution of phenolic contents of safflower oil has not been explored to its full potential. There is a need to conduct exclusive research on exploring the role of phenolic compounds in food and pharma industrial applications.

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Web Exclusive: FDA Approves New Qualified Health Claim for Oils High in Oleic Acid That Cut Risk of Coronary Heart Disease. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 11, 2020 at 1:05 PM Comments comments (0)

FDA Approves New Qualified Health Claim for Oils High in Oleic Acid

That Cut Risk of Coronary Heart Disease


The FDA has determined that there's credible evidence to support a qualified health claim that consuming oleic acid in edible oils, such as olive oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, canola oil, or soybean oil, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.


After conducting a systematic review of the available scientific evidence, the FDA now intends to exercise enforcement discretion over the use of two qualified health claims characterizing the relationship between consumption of oleic acid in edible oils (containing at least 70% of oleic acid per serving) and reduced risk of coronary heart disease. Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fat which, when substituted for fats and oils higher in saturated fat, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.


The science behind the new qualified health claim for oleic acid, while not conclusive, is promising. The FDA evaluated results from seven small clinical studies that evaluated the relationship between consumption of oils containing high levels of oleic acid (at least 70% per serving) and improved cholesterol levels, which indicates a reduced risk of coronary heart disease. Six of the studies found that those who were randomly assigned to consume diets containing oils with high levels of oleic acid as a replacement to fats and oils higher in saturated fat experienced a modest lowering in their total cholesterol and heart-damaging LDL cholesterol levels compared with those who ate a more Western-style diet that was higher in saturated fat. One study showed no significant effect. Importantly, and as noted in the health claim, none of the studies found that eating oleic acid-containing oils had beneficial heart effects unless they replaced other types of fats and oils higher in saturated fats in the diet.


The FDA intends to exercise enforcement discretion for the following qualified health claims:


"Supportive but not conclusive scientific evidence suggests that daily consumption of about 1½ tablespoons (20 grams) of oils containing high levels of oleic acid, when replaced for fats and oils higher in saturated fat, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. To achieve this possible benefit, oleic acid-containing oils should not increase the total number of calories you eat in a day. One serving of [x] oil provides [x] grams of oleic acid (which is [x] grams of monounsaturated fatty acid)."


"Supportive but not conclusive scientific evidence suggests that daily consumption of about 1 1/2 tablespoons (20 grams) of oils containing high levels of oleic acid may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. To achieve this possible benefit, oleic acid-containing oils should replace fats and oils higher in saturated fat and not increase the total number of calories you eat in a day. One serving of [x] oil provides [x] grams of oleic acid (which is [x] grams of monounsaturated fatty acid)."


The qualified health claims respond to a petition filed by Corbion Biotech, Inc. Qualified health claims are supported by credible scientific evidence, but don't meet the more rigorous "significant scientific agreement" standard required for an authorized FDA health claim. As such, they must be accompanied by a disclaimer or other qualifying language so that the level of scientific evidence supporting the claim is accurately communicated. The FDA's intent to exercise enforcement discretion for the use of the qualified health claims means that the agency doesn't intend to object to its use, as long as the products bearing the claim are consistent with the factors FDA stated in the Letter of Enforcement Discretion that responds to the petition.


Oleic acid can be found naturally in numerous food sources, including edible oils, meat (such as beef, chicken, and pork), cheese, nuts, sunflower seeds, eggs, pasta, milk, olives, and avocados. Corbion Biotech's petition identified the following edible oils that contain at least 70% of oleic acid per serving: 1) high oleic sunflower oil, 2) high oleic safflower oil, 3) high oleic canola oil, 4) olive oil, and 5) high oleic algal oil.


— Source: FDA

Indexed for Today's Dietician and FDA by Dragonfly KIngdom Library


Natural small molecules as inhibitors of coronavirus lipid-dependent attachment to host cells: a possible strategy for reducing SARS-COV-2 infectivity?. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 4, 2020 at 5:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Natural small molecules as inhibitors of coronavirus lipid-dependent attachment to host cells: a possible strategy for reducing SARS-COV-2 infectivity?

Mirko Baglivo 1, Manuela Baronio 2, Giuseppe Natalini 3, Tommaso Beccari 4, Pietro Chiurazzi 5, Ezio Fulcheri 6, Paolo Pietro Petralia 7, Sandro Michelini 8, Giovanni Fiorentini 9, Giacinto Abele Miggiano 10, Assunta Morresi 11, Gerolamo Tonini 12, Matteo Bertelli 13

Affiliations expand

PMID: 32191676 PMCID: PMC7569585 DOI: 10.23750/abm.v91i1.9402

Free PMC article


Background: Viral infectivity depends on interactions between components of the host cell plasma membrane and the virus envelope. Here we review strategies that could help stem the advance of the SARS-COV-2 epidemic.


Methods and results: We focus on the role of lipid structures, such as lipid rafts and cholesterol, involved in the process, mediated by endocytosis, by which viruses attach to and infect cells. Previous studies have shown that many naturally derived substances, such as cyclodextrin and sterols, could reduce the infectivity of many types of viruses, including the coronavirus family, through interference with lipid-dependent attachment to human host cells.


Conclusions: Certain molecules prove able to reduce the infectivity of some coronaviruses, possibly by inhibiting viral lipid-dependent attachment to host cells. More research into these molecules and methods would be worthwhile as it could provide insights the mechanism of transmission of SARS-COV-2 and, into how they could become a basis for new antiviral strategies.   https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32191676/

Balanced nutrition, especially in terms of adequate vitamin, mineral and protein intake, enhances the resistance against infections. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 4, 2020 at 5:50 PM Comments comments (0)


Background: This study has been done to analyze the effect of nutritional elements on human immune system. Human body possesses many elements in order to protect itself. In the simplest term, the outer creatine layer on the skin is one of them. Human immune system, along with the cells in peripheries circulation, hormones and solvable immuno modulators is fairly sophisticated and had yet not been resolved completely. Immune system, in human organism detects the molecules which are unfamiliar to its own structure and responds to them in convenient terms. In the event of pathogen factor entrance into human body, immune system steps in to action and creates immune response.

There are many factors that affect immune system functions, one of those is nutrition. There is a significant correlation between immune system and nutrition, furthermore malnutrition shouldn’t be considered as energy and a protein deficiency alone. Due to these reasons, the main aim of nourishment is not merely to gain energy and protein, but to enhance resistance against ailments with some specific nutriment and to turn the inflammatory response in someone’s best interests. The nutriments which show beneficial effects on immune system are called. Immune nutriments and nourishment on these nutriments is called immune diet. The main fields of application of immune diet is

patient undergoing surgery, traumatized, cancer patients, patients who need intensive care and patients with serious infections such as sepsis.

Conclusions: In conclusion, in order to strengthen our immune system, to reduce the risks of ailments and to stay healthy the body defence system in our body should be strengthened. To do so, particular costly medicines can be used; however, regular exercises and having an immune diet will be more economical and natural preference.



Nourishment; Immune system; Nutritional elements; Immunological nourishment


Human beings are in close relation with the microorganisms that were common in nature. Immune system is a means of protection against the damaging effects of noxas, which cause infection in our bodies. Immune system is a form of protection consisting of, thymus, spleen, lymph nodes and some specific immunity cells [1].

Immunity, on resistance against microorganisms acts both naturally and acquired in a complex mechanism, but they are mostly in collaboration. One of the factors that affect natural resistance is nutrition. Malnutrition breaks down the immune functions by suppressing the immune system [1].

The dietary factors that cause harm to immunity functions are either deficient intake of macro-nutrient elements (fat, carbohydrate, protein) or deficiency in some specific micronutrient elements (vitamin, mineral, water). Balanced nutrition, especially in terms of adequate vitamin, mineral and protein intake, enhances the resistance against infections. Research’s show that balanced nutrition subsidizes the immune system and Cary out vital importance on the system [2].

Nutrition has an impact on body resistance and microbes. Excessive strain, Traumas, Ambustions, etc., could cause protein destruction consequently body resistance decreases. Malnutrition, especially in childhood play vital role in catching illness and mortality. Malnutrition paves the way for infections and their complications. This composed infection distorts the nutrition and abates the immunity [2,3].

The effects of nutritional elements on immune system has been a study case for many research’s because there is significant influence on supporting immune system and in deficiency it causes malfunction in immune system [2,3].

Immune system

Immune system is a common name for structures within our bodies that protects living organisms against harmful substances. Human body possesses many elements in self defence. One of the simplest of those is outer creatine layer on the skin. Another element is biochemical body units [4].

The substance that stimulates the immune system is generally known as nonspecific substance like macrophage and neutrophils that enhance the defence capability of phagocytes. The many of those substances ad here the surfaces of phagocytes and lymphocyte cells and also stimulates the production of interferon, interleukin and sophisticated compositions, consequently activates the immune system [4].

Immune system has a structure that consists of similar neurologic system. One of the most significant traits of immune system is, having the ability of recognizing the millions of different threats and distinguishes them. Thanks to this trait, the functionary cells in immune system, detect the unfamiliar object, memorise it and recognise it when coming across later.

These structures are; thymus spleen, lymph nodes and specific immunity cells. Immune system gets down to work as soon as pathogenic factors entering the body. This defence carried out by immune system against pathogenic called “immune response” [1,5,6].

Immune system is a moliminous mechanism in fighting against diseases and sanitation. The possible response of immune system against body cells is called autoimmune reactions and consequently autoimmune disorders occur ...... https://www.omicsonline.org/open-access/the-effect-of-nutritional-elements-on-the-immune-system-2165-7904.1000152.php?aid=10186

Indexed for Omics Online by Dragonfly KIngdom Library

Speleotherapy for asthma. -- Dragonfly Kingdom Library

Posted on December 4, 2020 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Speleotherapy for asthma

S Beamon 1, A Falkenbach, G Fainburg, K Linde

PMID: 11406004 DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001741


Background: Speleotherapy, the use of subterranean environments, is a therapeutic measure in the treatment of chronic obstructive airways diseases. It is virtually unknown in the UK or the US, but has considerable widespread use in some Central and Eastern European countries.


Objectives: To review evidence for the efficacy of speleotherapy in the treatment of asthma.


Search strategy: We searched electronic databases (Medline, Embase, Cochrane Airways group database), contacted speleotherapy centres and experts in the field, hand searched proceedings, and checked bibliographies of articles obtained to identify possible relevant publications.


Selection criteria: We included controlled clinical trials (i.e., both randomized and those not reporting the method of allocation) that compared clinical effects of speleotherapy with another intervention or no intervention in patients with chronic asthma.


Data collection and analysis: Information concerning patients, interventions, results, and methodology were extracted in standardized manner by two independent reviewers and summarized descriptively.


Main results: Three trials including a total of 124 asthmatic children met the inclusion criteria, but only one trial had reasonable methodological quality. Two trials reported that speleotherapy had a beneficial short-term effect on lung function. Other outcomes could not be assessed in a reliable manner. A further search was conducted in July 2000. One further paper was excluded (see excluded studies)


Reviewer's conclusions: The available evidence does not permit a reliable conclusion as to whether speleo-therapeutic interventions are effective for the treatment of chronic asthma. Randomized controlled trials with long-term follow-up are necessary.


Update of

Speleotherapy for asthma.

Beamon S, Falkenbach A, Fainburg G, Linde K.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2000;(2):CD001741. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD001741.

PMID: 10796665 Updated. Review.

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