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Who says we have to suffer...to live a healthy happy vibrant life?

Red wine and dark chocolate... might seem decadent...but these guilty pleasures also might help us live longer...and healthier lives. Red wine and dark chocolate definitely improve an evening..but they also contain resveratrol..which lowers blood sugar. Red wine is a great source of catechins..which boost protective HDL cholesterol. Green tea? Protects your brain..helps you live longer..and soothes your spirit.

Red Wine, Green Tea and Dark Chocolate, the blog, is about living the good life...a life we create with our thoughts and our choices...and having fun the whole while!

I say lets make the thoughts good ones..and let the choices be healthy...exciting...and delicious! Bon Appetit!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

MRT ELFAHEX a medicinal mushroom extract for immune support

MRT ELFAHEX, an Alpha-Glucan-Rich, Cultured Mushroom Extract for Immune Support Against Pathogens in Healthy Individuals
Ginny Bank, BS, MA
Abstract
In Asia, mushrooms have been valued for their medicinal properties for over five millennia. Rich in polysaccharides (glucans), medicinal mushrooms are well established to have immune-modulating properties. Beta-glucans found in mushrooms are generally accepted as the compounds that provide the immune-enhancing activity. However, with a molecular weight of up to 300,000 Daltons, they are often too large to be absorbed efficiently by the human body. MRT ELFAHEX is a proprietary cultured mushroom extract containing lower-molecular weight and more absorbable acetylated alpha-glucans. Animal studies and in vitro research have shown this unique mushroom extract to have potential for enhancing the immune response against viruses and bacteria in healthy individuals. A human clinical study on healthy volunteers also provides evidence for its mechanisms of action.
 
Introduction
Basidiomycetes mushrooms have been used in traditional medicinal systems throughout Asia since ancient times as adaptogens and immunostimulants. The active constituents are polysaccharide compounds.1,2 Mushroom polysaccharides have been extensively studied for their ability to enhance host immunity and have been shown to be effective against biological response modifiers (BRM) in cancer immunotherapy. The mechanisms of action include natural killer cell enhancement, up-regulation of cytokines, anti-inflammatory properties and anti-tumor activity.2,3,4,5,6
Glucans are a subcategory of polysaccharides. Glucans are high- molecular weight compounds, ranging from 50,000 up to 300,000 Daltons, often too large to be efficiently absorbed in the GI tract. In addition to varying in composition (type of sugar), glucans can also differ in spatial configuration, including type of linkage (α or β), degree of branching, and tertiary conformation. All of these variations may have an effect on their bioavailability and biological activity. In fact, many glucans that have been shown to have in vitro or systemic immunomodulating activity in animals used intravenous, intraperitoneal, subcutaneous, or intramuscular administration. It has been shown that oral administration of these high- molecular weight glucans may not be as effective due to low bioavailability in the GI tract.5,7,8
A patented process9 has been developed using a hybridization of several types of Basidomycota mushroom mycelia in an effort to enhance absorption of the biologically-active polysaccharides and glucans. Mycelia are the vegetative part of a fungus found in soil or other growth medium. Mycelia consist of a mass of branching, thread-like hyphae that absorb nutrients from its environment. Cultivated under laboratory conditions in a liquid medium, rather than in the soil or wood growth medium that is natural to these fungi, the mycelia undergo enzymatic reaction by enzymes from the mycelia to break the large polysaccharides down to a more bioactive size. They are then extracted with hot water. This proprietary extract, called MRT ELFAHEX, contains a mixture of polysaccharides, amino acids, lipids, and minerals. The polysaccharides are mostly oligosaccharides, of which major portions are acetylated α 1- 4 glucan structures with low- molecular weight of only 5000 Daltons. These unique α-glucans are more easily absorbed in the gut than high molecular weight β-glucans. This α-glucan rich mushroom extract is widely used in Japan and China as a dietary supplement and functional food to boost immune function in healthy individuals. Studies in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy
and radiation have also shown it to act as a biological response modifier (BRM) to counteract immunosuppression and subsequent negative side effects resulting from chemotherapy, or to improve immune function so that patients can tolerate further treatment.10,11,12,13,14,15 Phase 1 trials have reported it to be well tolerated and largely free of adverse effects.16
Mechanisms of Action
There are two arms of the immune response against pathogenic microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses or parasites. The majority of infectious agents that make their way into the body are dealt with quickly by the innate immune response, which recruits immune cells to the site of infection to both engulf the invaders or release toxic substance to kill these pathogens. The adaptive immune system (also called the acquired immune system) is more highly specialized and creates an immunological memory to specific pathogens, leading to a more efficient response to the pathogen when encountered in the future. Adaptive immune responses are also classified into two types: humoral immunity, mediated by antibodies produced by B lymphocytes, and cell-mediated immunity, mediated by T lymphocytes. A number of in vitro, animal and human studies have been completed that provide evidence that MRT ELFAHEX increases the activity of both the innate immune response and the adaptive immune response.
A component of the innate immune system, natural killer (NK) cells are cytotoxic lymphocytes whose job is to detect malignant, virus- and bacteria-infected cells. NK cells possess receptors that sense and respond to such pathogens.17,18 In animal models, MRT EFLAHEX has been shown to enhance NK cell activity 19,20,21 Clinical studies in cancer patients provide further evidence of increased NK cell activity following MRT ELFAHEX supplementation.22,23,24
Another element of the innate immune response are dendritic cells, a type of antigen-presenting cell found in tissues that are in contact with the external environment, such as the skin, lungs, and epithelial lining. Dendritic cells act as sentinels by capturing, processing and presenting antigens to T-cells. They also naturally produce the protective cytokine IL- 12, which mobilizes innate NK cells. This dual action links innate immunity to adaptive immunity.25 Clinical research has shown that MRT ELFAHEX increases the number of dendritic cells in healthy individuals. In a double- blind, placebo-controlled trial, supplementation of MRT ELFAHEX resulted in significantly higher numbers of total dendritic cells compared to that at
NUTRICULATM “The Science Of Longevity Journal”, April 2015 | Page 1
baseline and values in control subjects. 26 In addition, MRT ELFAHEX has also been shown to increase T-cell activity in vitro21,27 and in mice,28 thus supporting the theory that MRT ELFAHEX enhances both the innate and adaptive immune response.
of polymorphonuclear cells. These results indicate that pretreatment with MRT ELFAHEX induces early activation of the immune response to pathogenic bacteria.
Summary
In conclusion, MRT ELFAHEX is a unique and proprietary, enzyme- modified cultured mushroom extract containing lower-molecular weight and more absorbable acylated α-glucans, which have been shown to have high potential for enhancing the immune response to pathogenic infection in healthy individuals. Evidence from animal studies supports its ability to decrease severity of infection, survival rate and shorten recovery time. The mechanism of action for these results appears to be its proven ability to increase NK cell activity and T-cell activity. MRT ELFAHEX may also have an effect on dendritic cells, linking the innate and adaptive immune response, coordinating a comprehensive immune response to pathogenic infections.
Author
Ginny Bank is the president and founder of Full Spectrum Consulting, a natural products consulting firm. A natural products chemist by training, she has been researching and developing natural products for dietary supplements and functional food applications for over 20 years.
References
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Effect on Pathogens
Influenza virus is a public health concern in all parts of the world with an annual attack rate of 5-10% of adults and 20-30% of children globally. The World Health Organization estimates that annual epidemics result in 3 to 5 million cases of severe illnesses and 250,000 to 500,000 deaths.29 The effect of MRT ELFAHEX on the influenza virus was investigated in young mice intranasally infected with influenza A. Supplementation with 1 g /kg body weight of MRT ELFAHEX per day for 1 week prior to and throughout infection with influenza A was shown to increase survival, decrease the severity of infection, and shorten recovery time. In addition, MRT ELFAHEX increased NK activity in the lungs and in the spleen, increased the percentage and number of NK cells in the lung, and reduced the infiltration of lymphocytes and macrophages compared with controls.30 A later study determined that MRT ELFAHEX demonstrated a dose-dependent increase in survival and reduction in the loss of body weight in mice infected with the influenza A virus. Dosages of 0.1 g/kg body weight per day or greater enhanced viral clearance and NK cell lytic efficiency.31 These data suggest that supplementation may improve immune response to primary flu infection at dosages equivalent to 500 mg to 5 g/d in humans.
Avian (bird) influenza virus (also called H5N1 virus) is a subtype of influenza
A virus. While this virus is highly contagious and deadly to birds, it does not 2 usually infect humans and is not transmissible between humans. However, WHO statistics indicate close to 700 cases worldwide since 2003 with 402 deaths.32 In addition, H5N1 virus has to be considered a potentially serious pandemic threat as the protein nature of the genome has potential to adapt
to acquire human-to-human transmission.33,34 The administration of MRT 5 ELFAHEX was also shown to improve immunity against infection of this virus in a mouse model with impressive results. All mice in the control group died 11 days post infection, with 50% dying on day 8. In contrast, 20% of mice in the study group survived until 21 days post infection and 8 the half survival rate was delayed from 8 days to 11 days. In addition, the effect of supplementation was long lasting. On day 28 of MRT ELFAHEX post administration, mice were infected and supplementation significantly increased survival rate with 30% of the mice surviving at least 28 days post infection. These preliminary results are encouraging and may indicate a beneficial effect in preventing a pandemic of human influenza with H5N1.35
Another viral pathogen is the West Nile Virus (WNV), a mosquito-borne RNA
virus that induces neurological diseases such as meningitis or encephalitis,
and in 30% of the cases, death. It occurs at higher frequencies in the elderly
and immune-compromised patients.36,37 Currently, there are no vaccines or treatments available for humans to help prevent WNV infection. Research
in animal models suggest that enhancing early humoral immune response
is a potential immunotherapy target for WNV’s viral entry into the brain. In a mouse study evaluating the effect of MRT ELFAHEX on host susceptibility
to WNV infection, MRT ELFAHEX supplementation (600 mg/kg, every other
day) attenuated viremia and brought an increase in survival following a 16 WNV challenge.38 The results suggest that MRT ELFAHEX is involved in activation of dendritic cells and γδ T cells, specialized T cell subset and components of the adaptive immune response.
al. Hepatol. 2002;37(1):78-86.
Sepsis is a life-threatening complication of pathogenic bacterial infection.
It is the main cause of late death in intensive care units in high-income countries and among the four most frequent causes of death in low- income countries.39 In a mouse model that simulates conditions that occur 19 after trauma or surgery, MRT ELFAHEX-treated mice had reduced bacterial
load 5 days after induced infection and cleared bacteria entirely after 6 days. In addition, the MRT ELFAHEX group had increased percentages of peripheral lymphocytes and monocytes and decreased numbers
20 Ghoneum M, Ninomiya Y, Torabi M, Gill G, Wojdani A. FASEB J 1992;6:A1213 (Abstract).
.    12  Cowawintaweewat S, Manoromana S, Sriplung H, Khuhaprema T, Tongtawe P, Tapchaisri P, Chaicumpa W. Asian Pac J Allergy Immunol. 2006;24(1):33-45.
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.    15  Kawaguchi Y. Natural Medicine Journal. 2009;1(1):1-6. Spierings EL, Fujii H, Sun B, Walshe T. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 2007;53(6):536-9.
17 Hasenkamp J, Borgerding A, Uhrberg M, Falk C, Chapuy B,
Wulf G, et al. Scand J Immunol. 2008;67(3):218-29.
18 Adib-Conquy M, Scott-Algara D, Cavaillion JM, Souza- Fonseca-Guimaraes F. Immunol and Cell Biology. 2014,92:256- 262.
Matsushita K, Kuramitsu Y, Ohiro Y, Obara M, Kobayashi M, Li YQ, Hosokawa M. Anticancer Drugs. 1998;9:343–50
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.    21  Gao Y, Zhang D, Sun B, Fujii H, Kosuna K, Yin Z.. Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2005;55:1258–66.
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.    25  Steinman RM, Hemmi H. 2006. Curr Top Microbiol Immunol. 2006;311:17-58.
.    26  Terakawa N, Matsui Y, Satoi S, Yanagimoto H, Takahashi K, Yamamoto T, et al. Nutr Cancer. 2008;60(5):643-51.
.    27  Lee WW, Lee N, Fujii H, Kang I. Cell Immunol. 2012;275(1- 2):19-23.
.    28  Wang S, Welte T, Fang H, Chang GJ, Born WK, O’Brien RL, et al. J Nutr. 2009;139(3):598-602.
.    29  World Health Organization (WHO). Influenza (Seasonal) Fact Sheet. March, 2014. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/ factsheets/fs211/en/
.    30  Ritz BW, Nogusa S, Ackerman EA, Gardner EM. J Nutr. 2006;136(11):2868-73.
.    31  Nogusa S, Gerbino J, Ritz BW. Nutr Res. 2009;29(2):139-43.
.    32  World Health Organization. Cumulative number of confirmed human cases for avian influenza A(H5N1) reported to WHO, 2003-2015. 2015. http://www.who.int/influenza/human_animal_ interface/EN_GIP_20150106CumulativeNumberH5N1cases. pdf?ua=1
.    33  Maines TR, Chen LM, Matsuoka Y, Chen H, Rowe T, et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006;103(32):12121-6.
.    34  Malik Peiris JS, de Jong MD, Guan Y. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2007; 20(2): 243–267.
.    35  Fujii H, Nishioka H, Wakame K, Sun B. Japanese Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2007;4:2):37-39.
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.    37  Jean CM, Honarmand S, Louie JK, Glaser CA. Emerg Infect Dis. 2007;13:1918–20.
.    38  Wang S, Welte T, Fang H, Chang GJ, Born WK, O’Brien RL, et al. J Nutr. 2009;139(3):598-602.
.    39  Bataar O, Lundeg G, Tsenddorj G, Jochberge S, Grander W, Baelani I, et al. Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2010;88:839-846.
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NUTRICULATM “The Science Of Longevity Journal”, April 2015 | Page 3


Saturday, May 16, 2015

10 Health Benefits of Broccoli and a Bonus!

1. Helps prevent cancer. Broccoli is a source of powerful antioxidants and anticarcinogens sulphorophane, indole-3-carbinol and diindolylmethane ( DIM) that impede the growth of breast cervical and prostate cancer. 
 2. Curbs overeating. A cup of broccoli has as much protein as a cup of rice or corn but only half the calories. Plus broccoli is a great source of fiber. 
3. Boosts your immune function. A cup of broccoli has a powerful supply of beta-carotene, zinc and selenium which strengthen your ability to fight infections. 
4. Fights birth defects. A cup of broccoli provides 94mcg of folate, a B vitamin important for proper fetal development. 
5. Fights Diabetes. The high fiber, low sugar and low calories keep insulin function tuned up and support stable blood sugar levels. 
6. Fights Heart Disease. The carotenoid lutein, vitamin B-6 and folate in broccoli may reduce the risk of atherosclerosis, heart disease and stroke. 
7. Promotes strong and healthy bones. Broccoli provides calcium and vitamin K which promote bone health and reduce risk of osteoporosis. 
8. Regulates blood pressure. The potassium, magnesium and calcium work together to support blood pressure in the normal range. 
9. Reduces incidence and severity of colds. Vitamin C and Vitamin A, antioxidants and anti-infectives help support resistance to respiratory infections. 
10. Makes for healthy women and manly men. Broccoli provides diindolylmethane which supports healthy estrogen balance and reduces accumulation of harmful estrogens in women all the while supporting healthy testosterone levels in men. 

The bonus is broccoli is easy to prepare and delicious. Lightly steam broccoli spears and florets and then sauté in olive oil with and abundant number of garlic cloves for a delicious side dish or serve over pasta for a nutritious and low calorie vegetarian main course.
Broccoli Rabe a Mediterranean favorite confers the same benefits!

5 Health Benefits of Blueberries - Via 5 Health Benefits of Blueberries

Via: 5 Health Benefits of Blueberries

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Sugary beverages start to wreck your health in just two weeks.

Still drinking soft drinks or sugar sweetened beverages? It is time to stop. A new study shows us what just two weeks of drinking soda can do to your heart. And the subjects were young healthy people.
Sugary drinks have been linked to obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. What is worse, the more soda (or sweet tea, or lattes) people drink the more likely these outcomes. The sugar industry and soft drink companies argue that association isn’t proof that one actually causes the other. But you have to agree that when population studies show a link again and again, and the mechanism of harm is plausible, it is silly to deny such strong evidence.
This is exactly how how we proved smoking cigarettes caused disease. But when it comes to discovering the effects on a habit on our health there’s nothing like controlled experiments. And the best evidence to prove cause and effect comes from double blind placebo controlled studies.
And when you’re studying heart disease, all the study has to do is look at changes in markers of heart disease risk, such as LDL cholesterol, apoB, triglycerides and uric acid in the blood.
A new study did just that. The study has been published online ahead of print in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The researchers recruited a group of 85 people aged 18-40, and divided them into 4 groups. For 2 weeks participants drank beverages sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) making up 0 percent, 10 percent, 17.5 percent or 25 percent of their daily caloric requirement. The participants were blinded to their drink content, and in order to do that the 0-percent drink for the control group was sweetened with aspartame.
Within 2 weeks, the people who were on the HFCS drinks had higher levels of LDL, triglycerides and uric acid, and the higher the HFCS they drank, the higher the level of heart risk factors.
Although the American Heart Association and the World Health Organization recommend that people limit added sugar to no more that 5 percent of daily calories, very few people do so, and levels of added sugar in the 10-20 percent are typical of the American diet. By this study’s assessment, the average American person’s sugar intake is certainly enough to increase cardiac risk.
Would replacing HFCS with regular sugar (sucrose) make a difference? Not likely. The fructose content in table sugar is 50 percent, compared to 55 percent in HFCS – just a slight difference – and since fructose is metabolized in our body in a way that promotes fat production, raises triglycerides and affects cholesterol levels, either one of these sweeteners would probably have the same negative effects; there's no reason to assume that sugar is any more safe than HFCS.