A Mental Sign Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Low levels of vitamin B12 can even contribute to brain shrinkage.

Low levels of vitamin B12 can even contribute to brain shrinkage.

Having trouble with basic thinking skills can be a sign of vitamin B12 deficiency, research finds.

Children with low levels of vitamin B12 had poorer cognitive abilities and difficulty interpreting the emotions of others.

They found it harder to:

  • sustain attention,
  • solve puzzles,
  • learn words and names,
  • and guess what others are thinking.

Low levels of vitamin B12 can even contribute to brain shrinkage, other studies have suggested.

The conclusions come from 500 children in Nepal who were followed from birth for 5 years.

The results showed that infants with poor vitamin B12 status had worse thinking skills at 5-years-old.

Low levels of vitamin B12 may impair brain development at an early age.

Ms Ingrid Kvestad, the study’s first author, said:

“Our results clearly demonstrate associations between early vitamin B12 status and various measures on development and cognitive functioning, as for example the ability to interpret complex geometrical figures, and the ability to recognize other children’s emotions.”

Good sources of vitamin B12 include fish, poultry, eggs and low-fat milk.

Fortified breakfast cereals also contain vitamin B12.

People who may have difficulty getting enough vitamin B12 include vegetarians, older people and those with some digestive disorders, such as Crohn’s disease.

Ms Kvestad said:

“Most of the Nepalese children participating in the study did not have severely low levels of vitamin B12, but their levels were suboptimal, below the recommendations for best possible growth and development.

It’s like a hidden deficiency of the vitamin in these children’s bodies, making their cells work rigorously to signalize imminent danger.

Our study is one contribution in the big puzzle to understand the implications low B12 levels might have on small children’s cognitive development.”

The study was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (Kvestad et al., 2017).

The Diet That Lowers IQ In 9 Days

The diet causes lower intelligence and 50% more laziness.

The diet causes lower intelligence and 50% more laziness.

High-fat foods can reduce intelligence in just 9 days, research finds.

Cognitive performance reduced by 20 percent in just over a week after eating a high-fat diet.

The study on rats fed them a diet equivalent to human junk food.

After nine days, not only was their cognitive performance affected, but their physical performance was reduced by 50 percent.

The short-term effects of a high-fat diet are startling, the researchers say.

A previous study has found a high-fat diet can reduce cognitive performance in humans as well.

Dr Andrew Murray, the study’s first author, said:

“We found that rats, when switched to a high-fat diet from their standard low-fat feed, showed a surprisingly quick reduction in their physical performance.

After just nine days, they were only able to run 50 per cent as far on a treadmill as those that remained on the low-fat feed.”

The conclusions come from a study of rats who were initially fed on a standard low-fat diet.

Half were then switched to a high-fat diet.

Dr Andrew Murray explained how these diets translate to what humans eat:

“With the standard feed, 7.5 per cent of the calories come from fat.

That’s a pretty low-fat diet, much like humans eating nothing but muesli.

The high-fat diet, in which 55 per cent of the calories came from fat, sounds high but it’s actually not extraordinarily high by human standards.

A junk food diet would come close to that.”

The results showed that after nine days the rats fed on a high-fat diet made 20 percent more errors when learning to navigate a maze.

They were also running 50 percent less far.

The researchers also found that the rats’ hearts were enlarged with the increased effort of pumping blood around their bodies.

Professor Kieran Clarke, study co-author, said:

“These are startling results.

It shows that high-fat feeding even over short periods of time can markedly affect gene expression, metabolism and physical performance.”

Professor Jeremy Pearson said:

“In little more than a week, a change in diet appears to have made the rats’ hearts much less efficient.

We look forward to the results of the equivalent studies in human volunteers, which should tell us more about the short-term effects of high-fat foods on our hearts.

We already know that to protect our heart health in the long-term, we should cut down on foods high in saturated fat.”

The study was published in The FASEB Journal (Murray et al., 2009).

The Healthiest Type Of Fibre To Add To Your Diet

What type of dietary fibre works best and what fibre supplements would be best for you to choose?

What type of dietary fibre works best and what fibre supplements would be best for you to choose?

Fermentable fibre, also known as prebiotics, are an important part of a healthy diet and essential for beneficial bacteria in the gut.

The vast number of prebiotics or dietary fibres sold on the market contain health claims that are not reviewed or approved by the FDA, so consumers haven’t got any clue which fibre supplements work best.

Researchers from Duke University found that those with a low-fibre diet benefited most when fed any of three main fermentable fibre supplements (inulin, dextrin, and galactooligosaccharides).

Also, prebiotics that stimulate the production of butyrate, a type of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), seem to be the most effective ones.

Dr Lawrence David, the study’s first author, said:

“The people who responded the best had been eating the least fiber to start with.”

Fibres are indigestible carbohydrates that are essential to beneficial bacteria in the gut.

These bacteria are important for weight loss, help control blood sugar levels, regulate immune function, fight inflammation, and also improve bowel movements.

Dr Zack Holmes, study co-author, said:

“We’ve evolved to depend on nutrients that our microbiomes produce for us.

But with recent shifts in diet away from fiber-rich foods, we’ve stopped feeding our microbes what they need.”

Americans on average consume less than 40 percent of the recommended daily fibre intake, a main reason behind many health problems such as colon cancer, digestive disorders, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

A high-fiber diet will make the gut microbiota produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) that provide various health benefits such as weight loss and the prevention of bowel cancer.

Butyrate is particularly important as it is the main fuel for the intestinal cells, and reduces inflammation by playing an important role in the protection of the gut lining from pathogens and toxins (leaky gut).

Fermentable fibres such as inulin, beta-glucans, pectins, oligofructose, dextrin, and guar gum vary in SCFA production from one person to another.

Therefore, Dr David and his team wanted to know if individuals need to personalise prebiotic supplementation.

So, they tested a variety of fibre supplements from the market.

Dr David said:

“We didn’t see a lot of difference between the fiber supplements we tested.

Rather, they looked interchangeable.

Regardless of which of the test supplements you pick, it seems your microbiome will thank you with more butyrate.”

The team tested the prebiotics: inulin, dextrin (Benefiber), and galactooligosaccharides (GOS) marketed as Bimuno on a group of people.

Participants who had a high fibre diet saw little change in their microbiomes, most likely due to already having optimal levels of beneficial bacteria.

But those who were deficient in fibre intake experienced the biggest improvement in butyrate production after taking any of the three prebiotics.

Mr Jeffrey Letourneau, study co-author of a second related study, said:

“If you’re a low fiber consumer, it’s probably not worth it to stress so much about which kind of fiber to add.

It’s just important that you find something that works for you in a sustainable way.”

Dr Holmes added:

“It doesn’t need to be a supplement either.

It can just be a fiber-rich food.

Folks who were already eating a lot of fiber, which comes from plants like beans, leafy greens, and citrus, already had very healthy microbiomes.”

The first study was published in Microbiome (Holmes et al., 2022) and the second study was published in The ISME Journal (Letourneau et al., 2022).

This High-Fat Diet Protects Against Dementia, Research Suggests

Foods included in the diet include seafood, low-carb vegetables, cheese, eggs, coconut oil and olive oil.

Foods included in the diet include seafood, low-carb vegetables, cheese, eggs, coconut oil and olive oil.

The ketogenic diet may help to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, research suggests.

The ketogenic diet is a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet.

Foods included in the ketogenic diet include seafood, low-carb vegetables, cheese, eggs, coconut oil and olive oil.

The new study on mice showed that the ketogenic diet improved neurovascular function.

Dr Ai-Ling Lin, study co-author, explained:

“Neurovascular integrity, including cerebral blood flow and blood-brain barrier function, plays a major role in cognitive ability.

Recent science has suggested that neurovascular integrity might be regulated by the bacteria in the gut, so we set out to see whether the Ketogenic Diet enhanced brain vascular function and reduced neurodegeneration risk in young healthy mice.”

The diet has previously been linked to improvements in epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease and autism.

Dr Lin said:

“While diet modifications, the Ketogenic Diet in particular, has demonstrated effectiveness in treating certain diseases, we chose to test healthy young mice using diet as a potential preventative measure.

We were delighted to see that we might indeed be able to use diet to mitigate risk for Alzheimer’s disease.”

The study was published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience (Lee et al., 2018).

The Supplements Taken By 50% Are A Waste Of Money For Most

What vitamin or mineral supplement do we need and which should be avoided?

What vitamin or mineral supplement do we need and which should be avoided?

Over half of the U.S. population take dietary supplements including vitamins, minerals, and herbs.

In 2021, Americans alone spent 50 billion dollars on dietary supplements.

For years many thought that supplements including vitamins and minerals were important for a healthy lifestyle, but what if this is not true and supplements can’t fill the nutritional gaps in our diet?

A review of 84 studies reveals that supplements are often a waste of money and some of them can be harmful to individuals.

The result is surprising as the case for supplements seems strong since foods such as nuts, fish, wholegrains, pulses, eggs, dairy, fruits, and vegetables are rich in nutrients with antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects.

These nutritious foods have been shown to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

So, the idea that supplements can mimic the effect of vitamins and minerals in foods seems convincing.

However, micronutrients such as phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals, fibre in fruits and vegetables work together along with other nutrients to give the body what it needs.

Whereas these nutrients when extracted and used in isolation won’t have the same health effect as natural foods.

Dr Jeffrey Linder, the study’s senior author, said:

“Patients ask all the time, ‘What supplements should I be taking?’

They’re wasting money and focus thinking there has to be a magic set of pills that will keep them healthy when we should all be following the evidence-based practices of eating healthy and exercising.”

According to Northwestern Medicine scientists, there is not enough evidence for non-pregnant, otherwise healthy adults to take multivitamins or single or paired supplements.

In addition, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) guidelines recommend avoiding beta-carotene supplements as these may increase the odds of cancer.

They also advise against taking vitamin E as the supplement doesn’t reduce cardiovascular disease, cancer, or death from any cause.

Dr Linder said:

“The task force is not saying ‘don’t take multivitamins,’ but there’s this idea that if these were really good for you, we’d know by now.

The harm is that talking with patients about supplements during the very limited time we get to see them, we’re missing out on counseling about how to really reduce cardiovascular risks, like through exercise or smoking cessation.”

However, Dr Linder noted that dietary supplements such as vitamin D and calcium can help people with deficiency, for example, preventing bone loss in the elderly.

Or certain vitamins, such as folic acid (vitamin B₉) are vital during early pregnancy to prevent birth defects.

Dr Natalie Cameron, study co-author, said:

“Certain vitamins, such as folic acid, are essential for pregnant women to support healthy fetal development.

The most common way to meet these needs is to take a prenatal vitamin.

More data is needed to understand how specific vitamin supplementation may modify risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes and cardiovascular complications during pregnancy.”

The study was published in the JAMA (Jia et al., 2022).

The Diet Linked To 40% Higher Depression Risk

Cutting these out of your diet helps reduce depression risk.

Cutting these out of your diet helps reduce depression risk.

A diet of ‘inflammatory foods’ is linked to a 40 percent higher risk of depression, research concludes.

Common inflammatory foods include fast food, cake and processed meats.

These all have high levels of saturated fats, cholesterol and carbohydrate.

Fast foods and the like cause excess inflammation in the body, which is linked to depression.

An anti-inflammatory diet includes more vitamins, fibre and unsaturated fats.

The Mediterranean diet, containing tomatoes, green vegetables, olive oil and fatty fish is anti-inflammatory.

The conclusions come a review of 11 separate studies that included over 100,000 people living in the US, Australia and Europe.

Everyone reported how inflammatory their diet was, as well as any depression symptoms.

The results showed that people eating ‘pro-inflammatory’ diets had a 40 percent higher risk of developing depression or depressive symptoms.

The same was true for young and old.

Inflammation is how the body protects itself against toxins.

However, brain cells are killed when the body remains in a constant state of high alert, while fighting toxins.

Dr Steven Bradburn, study co-author, said:

“These results have tremendous clinical potential for the treatment of depression, and if it holds true, other diseases such as Alzheimer’s which also have an underlying inflammatory component.

Simply changing what we eat may be a cheaper alternative to pharmacological interventions, which often come with side-effects.

This work builds on recent advances in the field by others, including the first ever clinical trial into dietary interventions for treating depression, which have shown beneficial improvements in depressive symptoms.

It should be stressed, however, that our findings are an association, rather than causality.

Further work is needed to confirm the efficacy of modulating dietary patterns in treating depression with relation to inflammation.”

The study was published in the journal Clinical Nutrition (Tolkein et al., 2018).

Cancer: One Vitamin Could Halve The Risk Of Common Types

Modern lifestyles mean many people do not get enough of this vitamin.

Modern lifestyles mean many people do not get enough of this vitamin.

Taking a daily vitamin D supplement could reduce the risk of dying from cancer by 13 percent, research finds.

Vitamin D is produced by the body when the skin is exposed to sunshine.

Vitamin D may work to protect the body against cancer through the production of an enzyme that attacks acids linked to cancer.

Modern lifestyles mean many people do not get outside enough.

Up to half of the world’s population is deficient in vitamin D.

Depression symptoms like energy loss, concentration problems and lack of pleasure can be signs of vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D is found in oily fish, egg yolks, fortified cereals and some margarine spreads.

The conclusions come from three new separate studies presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology conference in Chicago.

One study found that vitamin D deficiency is linked to double the risk of pancreatic cancer and a higher risk of bowel cancer.

Dr. Shifeng Mao, study author, said:

“We are living in a modern society with a fast-paced lifestyle.

People spend significant amount of time at work in a concrete building and have much less time for leisure, let alone being exposed to nature and sunlight, so Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent.”

A second study including 79,000 people found that taking a vitamin D supplement reduced the risk of cancer by 13 percent.

Dr Tarek Haykal, that studies author, said:

“I would like to see more oncologists and primary care doctors consider prescribing vitamin D for their patients as it carries many benefits with minimal side effects.”

A third study involving 2,280 men found that those given vitamin D, along with statins, were at a 38 percent lower risk of dying of prostate cancer.

Other studies presented at the same conference found that exercise helps cancer patients to survive for longer.

The studies were presented at American Society of Clinical Oncology conference in Chicago in 2019.

A Mental Sign Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Good sources of vitamin B12 include fish, poultry, eggs and low-fat milk.

Good sources of vitamin B12 include fish, poultry, eggs and low-fat milk.

Memory problems can be a sign of vitamin B12 deficiency, research finds.

People with B12 deficiency can experience worse memory for both ideas and events.

The vitamin deficiency has also been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and brain shrinkage by some research.

The good news is that B12 deficiency is relatively easy to correct with a change in diet or supplementation.

Good sources of vitamin B12 include fish, poultry, eggs and low-fat milk.

Fortified breakfast cereals also contain vitamin B12.

People who may have difficulty getting enough vitamin B12 include vegetarians, older people and those with some digestive disorders, such as Crohn’s disease.

The conclusions about the link between Alzheimer’s and B12 come from a study of 271 Finnish people aged 65-79 who were followed for 7 years.

At the start of the study, all were healthy — however, by the end, 17 had developed Alzheimer’s.

Blood tests showed that higher levels of vitamin B12 were associated with a lower risk of developing the disease.

Dr Babak Hooshmand, the study’s first author, said:

“Our findings show the need for further research on the role of vitamin B12 as a marker for identifying people who are at increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Low levels of vitamin B12 are surprisingly common in the elderly.

However, the few studies that have investigated the usefulness of vitamin B12 supplements to reduce the risk of memory loss have had mixed results.”

Dr Hooshmand cautioned that B12 supplements for memory problems are not yet supported unequivocally by the research:

“More research is needed to confirm these findings before vitamin B12 should be used solely as a supplement to help protect memory.”

The study was published in the journal Neurology (Hooshmand et al., 2010).

A Facial Sign Linked To Vitamin B12 Deficiency

This facial symptom can be irritating.

This facial symptom can be irritating.

A twitching near the eyes can be a sign of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Twitches normally happen in one or the other eye — they can be irritating but they are not normally painful.

Similarly, a tingling sensation in the legs, feet or hands can also signal a vitamin B12 deficiency.

The feeling can start in the legs and then, later, move to the hands.

It can be accompanied by difficulties balancing or walking.

This problem is known as neuropathy and is more common in those over 50-years-old.

Other frequent signs of vitamin B12 deficiency include feeling dizzy and lethargic, being constipated, muscle weakness and jaundice.

Vitamin B12 is used by the body to keep the nervous system healthy and to make red blood cells.

Certain groups have difficulty getting enough vitamin B12, such as older people, vegetarians and people with digestive disorders, like Crohn’s disease.

Fortunately, vitamin B12 deficiency is relatively easy for most to rectify.

Supplements are available, or foods such as fortified cereals, liver, dairy, eggs and salmon are all high in vitamin B12.

Dr John D. England, a neurologist at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, said:

“People with suspected nerve problems should talk to their doctors about screening tests, especially blood glucose, vitamin B12 level and serum protein levels, since these tests can often point to common causes of neuropathy.”

Dr England continued:

“There are many people with a neuropathy who have been walking around for years without having been diagnosed and treated.

Both neurologists and people with neuropathy need to know that the appropriate choice of tests is critical to accurate diagnosis.”

Be aware that eye twitching can also be linked to tiredness, stress, allergies and dry eyes, among other causes.

The guidelines were published in the American Academy of Neurology.

The Amount Of Vitamin C That Boosts The Immune System

Experts have estimated how much vitamin C we need relative to our body weight to boost the immune system.

Experts have estimated how much vitamin C we need relative to our body weight to boost the immune system.

People who weigh more need more vitamin C for a strong immune system to help fight against respiratory infections including COVID-19 and flu during colder months.

Experts have estimated how much vitamin C we need relative to our body weight to boost the immune system and also reduce the odds of heart disease.

So, it would be wise for heavier people to add to their diet more fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C such as strawberries, oranges, kiwis, and kale.

Past studies suggest that poor vitamin C levels in overweight and obese people could imbalance enzyme functions and so increase the risk of low-grade inflammation, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory infections, and getting frequent colds.

Researchers identified that for every extra 10 kilograms an individual carries they need to take 10 milligrams more vitamin C per day to maximise immune system functioning.

For example, if a 60 kg adult requires 110 mg of vitamin C per day then someone who weights 90 kg needs a 140 mg daily intake to obtain a comparable plasma vitamin C concentration.

Professor Carr, the study’s first author, said:

“Previous studies have already linked higher body weight with lower vitamin C levels.

But this is the first study to estimate how much extra daily vitamin C is actually needed for people, relative to their body weight, to help maximize their health.”

Public health officials should revise the guidance on vitamin C intake levels as the nutrient is important for immune health and helps protect our body against viral infections such as COVID-19 and flu.

Taking the correct amount of vitamin C could protect heavier people from such diseases.

Professor Carr said:

“We know obesity is a risk factor for getting COVID-19 and that obese patients are more likely to struggle to fight it off once infected.

We also know that vitamin C is essential for good immune function and works by helping white blood cells fight infection.

The results from this study therefore suggest that increasing your vitamin C intake if overweight might be a sensible response.

Pneumonia is a major complication of COVID-19 and patients with pneumonia are known to be low in vitamin C.

International research shows that vitamin C decreases the likelihood of people getting pneumonia and decreases the severity of it, so finding the right levels of vitamin C to take if you are overweight may help to better support your immune system.”

The best way to achieve the optimal levels of vitamin C is eating fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C rather than taking supplements.

Professor Carr said:

“The old saying of ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ is actually useful advice here.

An average-sized apple contains 10 milligrams of vitamin C, so if you weigh 70 to 80 kilograms, achieving the optimal amount of vitamin C your body needs could be as easy as eating an extra apple or two to give your body the extra 10 to 20 milligrams of daily vitamin C it needs.

If you weigh more than this, then perhaps an orange, which contains 70 milligrams of vitamin C, or a kiwifruit with 100 milligrams, may be the easiest solution.”

The study was published in the journal Nutrients (Carr et al., 2022).

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