October 30, 2020

New study demonstrates the benefits of resistant starch in patients with chronic kidney disease

Over 10% of the adult pong causes of end-stage kidney disease are due to type II diabetes and hypertension. There can also be a dysbiosis of the gut microbiome along with inflammation and oxidative stress that can play a role as well. In addition, environmental toxins and proton pump inhibitor (PPI) use have also been linked to CKD.

According to a new study published in Nutrition & Metabolism, researchers demonstrated the benefit of resistant starch on traditional kidney laboratory biomarkers.

A high fiber diet leads to the production of short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in the gastrointestinal tract. These play an essential role in T regulatory cell activation, which regulates the intestinal immune system. If there is dysregulation in the immune system, there can be increase inflammation seen in CKD.

Previous research has demonstrated that a high fiber diet can mitigate disease severity and kidney dysfunction in patients with CKD.

This study was a double-blinded randomized clinical trial consisting of 50 patients in end stage renal disease. There were 25 patients in each group that either took a resistant starch enriched diet or placebo over an 8-week period.  This was 20-25 gram, 60% resistant starch cracker or a 20-25 gram, waxy corn starch, cracker. Each participant received a 20 gram cracker the first 4 weeks followed by a 25 gram cracker the remainder of the study. Laboratory assessment of BUN, creatinine, uric acid, hemoglobin, hemocrit, uric acid, hs-crp, p-cresol, indoxyl sulfate, and bone markers were measured at baseline and at the end of the study.

As a result, there was a significant reduction of creatinine, uric acid, and p-cresol levels in the resistant starch group. There was not a significant change in the other parameters.

There were no side effects including gastrointestinal intolerance with the recommended doses of resistant starch. Based on these results as well as the safety of diet with resistant starch, it makes sense that this a great addition in the treatment of chronic kidney disease. Other nutrients to consider include fish oil, phosphatidylcholine, and n-acetyl-cysteine or glutathione.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Khosroshahi HT, Abedi B, et al. Effects of fermentable high fiber diet supplementation on gut derived and conventional nitrogenous product in patients on maintenance hemodialysis: a randomized controlled trial. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2019 Mar 12;16:18.



New study demonstrates curcumin improves dyslipidemia and inflammatory markers in patients with diabetes

According to a new study published last Tuesday, researchers demonstrated the effect of curcumin supplementation on inflammatory markers and lipid profiles of patients with diabetes.

There are only a few natural products that have demonstrated the wide range of protective properties as curcumin. Turmeric has three main bioactive components which are curcumin, desmethoxycurcumin and bisdemethoxycurcumin. These curcuminoids have many biological effects including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antitumor, antibacterial, and antiviral properties.

This double-blind randomized clinical trial included forty-four patients with Type 2 diabetes. Each patient was randomly assigned to take 1500 mg of curcumin or a placebo per day for a ten-week period. Anthropometric measurements were measured at baseline and at the end of the study. Laboratory assessment including a lipid panel, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-crp), and adiponectin were measured at baseline and at the end of study.

As a result, there was a significant reduction in serum triglycerides in the patients who consumed the curcumin compared to the beginning of the study. In addition, hs-crp levels decreased as expected and there was an increase in adiponectin, a fat burning hormone, compared to the placebo. These results indicate the benefits of curcumin supplementation in patients with diabetes.

Previous studies have demonstrated that curcumin promotes changes in the expression of genes involved in cholesterol synthesis such as the LDL receptor mRNA, HMG CoA reductase, SREBP, cholesterol 7 alpha hydrolyze, PPAR, and LXR1.1,2 One human study demonstrated that 500 mg of curcumin per day increased HDL cholesterol by 29% and reduced total cholesterol by 12%.2

In addition, I shared a study from Complementary Therapies in Medicine from 2017 on curcumin and dyspildemia in diabetic patients. In this study, researchers demonstrated that curcuminoid supplementation of 1000 mg daily for 12 weeks can reduce lipoprotein(a) and increase HDL-C.

Health care providers have many tools today to assess cardiovascular health and support the body’s physiology. It is essential to perform a thorough assessment for these patients. This may include looking at advanced lipid profiles, inflammatory markers (ferritin, hs-CRP, fibrinogen), nutrient markers (magnesium, potassium, selenium, copper, folate, B12, B6, and zinc), fat soluble vitamins (CoQ10, vitamin D, vitamin K, Vitamin A, and tocotrienols), oxidative stress factors (homocysteine, insulin, and lipid peroxidases), heavy metals, and fatty acid profiles. A successful treatment approach should include investigation into these factors.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Adibian M, Hodaei H, et al. The effects of curcumin supplementation on high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, serum adiponectin, and lipid profile in patients with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Phytother Res. 2019 March 12.

 Ferguson J, Stojanovski E et al. Curcumin potentiates cholesterol-lowering effects of phytosterols in hypercholesterolaemic individuals. A randomised controlled trial. Metabolism 2017 Dec 29.

  1. Houston MC, Fazio S, Chilton FH, Wise DE, Jones KB, Barringer TA, and Bramlet DA. Non pharmacologic treatment of dyslipidemia. Prog Cardiovasc Dis 2009; 52: 61–94.
  2. Soni KB and Kuttan R. Effect of oral curcumin administration on serum peroxides and cholesterol levels in human volunteers. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 1992; 36(4): 273–75.

New study demonstrates the effect of vitamin D on intestinal inflammation in IBD

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an autoimmune condition where in most cases there are multiple triggers chronically stimulating the immune system over a long period of time in multiple ways and the immune system gets into overloaded, overwhelmed state and loses its ability to function leading to chronic inflammation causes symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, and other debilitating symptoms and anemia.

Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to many autoimmune diseases, including type 1 diabetes, systemic lupus erythematosus, multiple sclerosis, and IBD, with studies finding a higher prevalence of these diseases in those who are deficient in vitamin D.

More and more data has demonstrated that Vitamin D supplementation may lengthen the remission in patients with IBD.

According to a study published earlier this month in the Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis, researchers investigated the impact if vitamin D on the gut microbiome and inflammation.

This was a small study including twenty five patients. Eight individuals had active ulcerative colitis, nine were in remission, and eight did not have IBD and were controls. Inflammatory markers and the gut microbiome were analyzed. All of the patients were prescribed 40,000 IUs of vitamin once a week for an 8 week period.

As a result, vitamin D levels increased from 13.6 ng/ml to 44.4 ng/ml. In patients with active IBD, fecal calprotectin levels reduced from median 275 to 111µg/g, platelet count reduced, and albumin increased. These biomarkers did not change in patients with inactive ulcerative colitis or in the control group. In addition, there were no changes in overall bacterial diversity, however, there was a significant increase in Enterobacteriaceae bacteria in patients with ulcerative colitis.

Overall vitamin D supplementation was associated with reduced intestinal inflammation in patients with active ulcerative colitis as well as increase in Enterobacteriaceae but no change in diversity of the gut microbiome.

Most patients I find need anywhere form 5,000-10,000 IUs/day of vitamin D. It is crucial to use a supplement that combines vitamin K or supplement with a separate vitamin K supplement. There are intricate relationships between fat-soluble vitamins and it is important take this into account with dosing vitamin D supraphysiologically.

According to a study in The Journal of Immunology, March 2012, researchers demonstrated that the highest levels of inflammatory inhibition occurred at 50 ng/ml. Therefore, there may have been a more significant outcome this study if vitamin D was dosed 10,000 IU daily or 50,000IU/week.

One must also investigate into the other potential environmental triggers that can cause inflammation such as, food sensitivities, toxins, and molds. Also, stool testing is essential as one can rule of bacterial infections and dysbiosis as well as assess inflammatory, immune, digestion, and absorption markers.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Garg M, Hendy P, et al. The effect of vitamin D on intestinal inflammation and faecal microbiota in patients with ulcerative colitis. J Crohns Colitis. 2018 May 3. doi: 10.1093/ecco-jcc/jjy052

Resveratrol improves insulin sensitivity and glucose control in patients with diabetes

Resveratrol is a polyphenol with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.  It has been widely publicized for its cardiovascular, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-aging benefits.  

Resveratrol activates sirtuins, which can increase insulin sensitivity and protect against oxidative damage. Previous research with resveratrol has demonstrated improvements in dysglycemia and insulin sensitivity, however, there has been some inconsistency in results.

According to a new review published 3 weeks in Nutrition & Metabolism, researchers demonstrated that resveratrol does improve glycemic control and insulin sensitivity in individuals with type II diabetes.

This review consisted of 9 RCT studies, dosing ranges from 8 mg/d to as high as 3 g/d with a duration of 4 weeks to 12 months. The overall results demonstrated that resveratrol significantly reduces fasting glucose levels but only at a dosage of 100 mg/d or more. In addition, HOMA-IR, fasting insulin levels, and blood pressure was also reduced by resveratrol.

In addition, a previous study published earlier this year in the International Heart Journal, researchers demonstrated resveratrol’s benefits in improving arterial stiffness and reduced oxidative damage in patients with type II diabetes. This study used the same dosage of 100 mg which has been shown to reduce fasting glucose levels.

Resveratrol can act through several mechanisms, including binding and activating estrogen receptors to increase nitric oxide bioavailability and facilitate the vasodilatation. In addition, it decreases reactive oxygen species production in vascular endothelial cells. Oxidative stress is elevated in chronic disease such as obesity and diabetes. 

These results support resveratrol supplementation as a potential strategy for improving glucose control and insulin sensitivity as well as mitigating arterial stiffness and reducing blood pressure and oxidative damage with patients with type II diabetes.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Zhu X, Wu C et al. Effects of resveratrol on glucose control and insulin sensitivity in subjects with type 2 diabetes: systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutrition & Metabolism. 2017 Sept 22;14:60.

New study demonstrates selenium reduces antibody levels in Hashimoto’s patients

Hashimoto’s is one of the most common autoimmune diseases. Autoimmunity can occur a few different ways, but eventually the thyroid gland progressively becomes underactive due to antibody and cell mediated autoimmune processes.

Environmental triggers are what integrative doctors mainly work with in functional medicine to healthy address the dysfunction in autoimmune disease. These can be food triggers such as gluten or food sensitivities that can trigger inflammation as well as anything coming in with the food such as toxins or molds. In addition, the nutrient status of the person. This can be antioxidant status, vitamins, essential fatty acids, vitamin D, etc. Also, gut health. This includes “leaky gut” and dysbiosis. There are also toxins that can be affect the status of the immune system. These are heavy metals, xenobiotics, as well as the total toxic burden in the body.

According to a study published last month in Advanced Biomedical Research, researchers demonstrated that selenium reduces antibody levels in patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

In this study, seventy patients ranging from 18 to 60 years of age with Hashimoto’s were divided into two groups. One group received 200 mcg of selenium with levothyroxine and the other group received a placebo along with the medication. Laboratory assessment included serum selenium levels, TSH, freeT4, free T3, and thyroid antibodies at baseline and three months later.

As a result, the mean thyroid peroxidase antibody level was significantly lower after treatment in the selenium group. Selenium is involved in the metabolism and regulation of thyroid hormones and is an antioxidant which has protective properties. 

Another nutrient to consider is inositol. Myo-inositol is a second messenger regulating several hormones such as insulin and TSH.

A previous study published last year in the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences demonstrated that inositol at 600 mg a day and selenium at 83 mcg per day significantly reduced TSH levels in Hashimoto’s patients with subclinical hypothyroidism and increased thyroid hormone concentrations. In addition, there was a reduction in TPO and thyroglobulin antibody concentrations.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Kachouei A, Rezvanian H, et al. The Effect of Levothyroxine and Selenium versus Levothyroxine Alone on Reducing the Level of Anti-thyroid Peroxidase Antibody in Autoimmune Hypothyroid Patients. Advanced Biomedical Research. 2018 January 22;7:1. doi: 10.4103/2277-9175.223735

New review investigates exercise, diet, and supplementation on the immune system and aging

As the body ages, the immune system changes and goes through a remodeling process. There is a reduction in immune cell functions which can lead to an increasing risk of infection, viral reactivation, and increased risk of autoimmune disease and cancer. These changes are affected by exercise, muscle mass, and nutritional status.

In addition, chronic low grade inflammation has been shown to contribute to almost all chronic disease and has been correlated with aging. After 40 years of age the body’s cells are typically less able to produce antioxidants and soak up free radicals making them more susceptible to damage and death.

According to a review published last month in Nutrients, researchers investigated the effects of exercise, diet, and supplementation on the immune system and aging.

 Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of exercise on aging and the immune system. Exercise has been shown to increase natural killer cell function. In addition, cross-sectional studies in older adults in highly trained individuals, runners, and cyclists have showed improved function of the adaptive immune system including improved T-cell proliferation, reduced inflammation, and decreased thymus output.

Dietary intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids are also essential for overall health as well as impacting immune function. Studies on omega-3 fatty acid supplementation had dosing ranges of 2 to 3.3 grams per day over a duration of 3 to 6-month period. Supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids significantly reduce kynuerinine levels. Kynuernate is a metabolite of tryptophan, which is elevated in chronic low grade inflammation.

Accumulating research also demonstrates the association of the gut microbiome to health status and aging. There is evidence that age-related changes in the gut microbiome may be related to elevated inflammatory makers and other geriatric conditions such as sarcopenia, frailty, cognitive decline secondary to reduced short chain fatty acid production. Also, the immune system has a tendency to decline with age which makes one more susceptible to infections as well as increasing the risk of chronic disease. Probiotics have the potential to rebalance gut microbiota and modulate gut immune response inhibiting the NF-κB pathway. Probiotics control microbial populations, alter cytokine expression, increase secretory IgA, increase natural killer cell activity, and reduce the risk of infections.

Previous research has demonstrated how the gastrointestinal tract changes with aging and how this impacts overall health. As one ages, the gut has an increase in interleukin 6 (IL-6) which causes the immune system to release IL-6 and trigger inflammation.

Increased levels of IL-6 directly lead to increased intestinal permeability with no physical differences seen in its structure. They also showed there was an association with a decreased immune response to microbes with aging, which may contribute to an increased susceptibility to infection.

Probiotics help encourage microbial diversity, especially if the probiotic supplement is of mixed species. In ecological terms, it is more stable to have diverse populations in any ecosystem. The same is true for the gastrointestinal microbiome.

These results suggest that nutritional supplements including both omega-3 fatty acids and probiotics can significantly reduce established biomarkers of systemic inflammation in middle-age and older adults. Other nutrients to consider for aging and inflammation and the immune system include tocotrienols, geranylgeraniol, resveratrol, quercetin, and specialized pro-resolving mediators.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Weyh C, Kruger K, et al. Physical Activity and Diet Shape the Immune System during Aging. Nutrients 2020, 12(3), 622.

Study demonstrates antiviral effect of quercetin by inhibiting virus entry

Quercetin, a polyphenol, has been shown to have both strong antioxidant as well as anti-inflammatory properties. It is one of the ubiquitous flavonoids found in many Chinese herbs, fruits, and vegetables. Common foods include blueberries, red onions, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and many nuts. Research has demonstrated that quercetin supplementation has anti-hypertensive, anticoagulant, and anti-hyperglycemic properties.

A previous study demonstrated that quercetin could protect patients from dying from severe complications associated with the H1N1 influenza A virus, however, the mechanism was unknown.

According to a study published in Viruses, researchers investigated the effects of quercetin as an anti-viral agent. There have been several other infections such as the H1N1 swine flu, H5N1 avian influenza, and H7N9 influenza virus, which can lead to acute respiratory distress syndrome, pulmonary compromise, and death. Due to the lack of drugs to treat these infections, natural compounds are a major area of anti-viral research discovery.

The life cycle of the influenza virus consists of viral attachment, entry, replication, and release.

This study demonstrated that quercetin can inhibit the entry of an influenza virus in the early stage of infection measuring the inhibition in a cell infection model. This is the initial step of the viral replication cycle. In addition, the research team noted that this inhibitory effect was increased when the virus was pre-incubated with quercetin. It is also important to note that quercetin being an antioxidant and having anti-inflammatory properties reduces the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and lung inflammation in mice.

As a result, quercetin may provide an inexpensive natural polyphenol for prevention and treatment of influenza infections. It may also be considered in combination with other therapeutics and drugs, which could have an increased anti-viral effect, reduce drug dosage, and fewer side effects. As a dietary supplement, quercetin is often consumed between 200 mg to 1200 mg. Other anti-viral compounds to consider include vitamins A, vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, monolaurin, melatonin, resveratrol, and geranylgeraniol.  Vitamin C specifically has been shown to improve the absorption of quercetin and increase plasma levels.

 By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Wu Wenjiao, Li Richan, et al. Quercetin as an Antiviral Agent Inhibits Influenza A Virus (IAV) Entry. Viruses. 25 December 2015;8(1).

New study demonstrates lutein and zeaxanthin improve cognitive function in young healthy adults

A wide variety of research has shown the beneficial effects of diet on nearly every aspect of brain function and overall health. Lutein is selectively incorporated into the macula as well as the brain. Lutein levels in the macula and the brain have been associated with better cognition.

Previous research has demonstrated the benefits of lutein and zeaxanthin on eye health and some research is emerging on their benefits on cognition in older adults.

According to a study published 3 days ago in Nutrients, researchers demonstrated that supplementation with lutein and zeaxanthin improve cognitive function in young, healthy adults.

In this study researchers assessed cognitive function of 51 young healthy individuals ages 18 to 30.  These individuals were randomized into supplement and placebo groups. Macular pigment optical density (MPOD) was measured as well as cognitive function using the CNS Vital Signs testing platform. MPOD and cognitive function were measured every four months for one year of supplementation. As a result, supplementation increased MPOD significantly over the course of the year compared to the placebo group. Researchers demonstrated that lutein and zeaxanthin increases in MPOD which resulted in significant improvements in spatial memory, reasoning ability, and complex attention.

In addition to supplementation, avocados are a great bioavailable source of lutein, containing approximately 0.5 mg of lutein. A study published earlier this year in August demonstrated that avocado consumption increases macular pigment density.

Other brain supportive nutrients to consider are GPC, CDP-choline, gingko biloba, and phosphatidylserine, and fish oil. GPC and CDP-choline are water soluble forms of choline that can cross the blood brain barrier and support brain health. These help make more acetylcholine, neurotransmitters, as well as phosphatidylcholine in the cell membranes. In addition, phosphatidylserine is an essential nutrient for brain function and is not found in the diet.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Renzi-Hammond LM, Bovier ER, et al. Effects of a Lutein and Zeaxanthin Intervention on Cognitive Function: A Randomized, Double-Masked, Placebo-Controlled Trial of Younger Healthy Adults. Nutrients. 2017 November 14;9(11).  pii: E1246. doi: 10.3390/nu9111246.

New study demonstrates quercetin improves metabolic features of PCOS

PCOS is associated with irregular menstrual periods, infertility, obesity, diabetes, excess hair growth, acne, and other hormonal difficulties. Researchers compared the effects of lifestyle changes alone or with placebo to lifestyle combined with metformin. They found that lifestyle modification combined with taking metformin resulted in increased weight loss. As a result, there was a lower body mass index (BMI), and improved menstruation.

In a new study published six days ago in Cell Journal, researchers demonstrated that oral quercetin supplementation improves the metabolic features of PCOS patients by upregulating adiponectin and Amp-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Adiponectin signaling regulates fatty acid metabolism and glucose by activation of AMPK.

Pharmaceutical interventions provide some improvements but they do not correct many of the underlying factors and have side effects that may not be tolerated by patients. Many PCOS patients are overweight and have dietary habits that exacerbate the condition.

This randomized clinical trial consisted of 84 patients with PCOS. They were randomly assigned to two groups. One group received 500 mg quercetin twice daily for 12 weeks and other group received a placebo.

As a result, researchers demonstrated that oral quercetin supplementation significantly increased the expression of adiponectin receptors and AMPK.

Quercetin supplementation enhanced AMPK level by 12.3% compared with the placebo group.

Other nutrients to consider to support PCOS:

Studies have shown that an inositol deficiency is common in women with PCOS. There appears to be a reduced ability to process, metabolize, and effectively use inositol from foods which is a distinctive characteristic feature of PCOS. As a result, the nutritional requirements of PCOS patients may not be met by a simple change in the diet and that inositol should be viewed as a conditionally essential nutrient in these women.

Myo-inositol and D-chiro-inositol are both essential for patients with PCOS. The conversion of myo-inositol to D-chiro-inositol is of interest because errors here have been strongly involved in PCOS patients. Strong evidence supports that the body makes D-chiro-inositol from myo-inositol and more evidence suggests that some people are less able to make this conversion than others.  Along this spectrum, people who are completely unable to convert myo-inositol to D-chiro-inositol are only going to benefit from supplementation with D-chiro-inositol. Other people who make the conversion, but with less than optimal efficiency, may benefit from large doses of myo-inositol. And, other individuals in between, might see the best results from a blend of the two. Since this conversion is impaired in individuals with PCOS, it is important to always include D-chiro-inositol with myo-inositol supplementation. D-chiro-inositol is the more potent form of inositol for supporting insulin resistance, however, myo-inositol is need for oocyte quality and maturation. Therefore, supplementing with D-chiro-inositol alone cannot not fulfill myo-inositol’s roles that are specific and different from D-chiro-inositol, since it does not convert to myo-inositol.

Also, essential fatty acids should be consumed in our diets for overall health, but most individuals with insulin resistance are deficient. Fish oils improve insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. 

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Rezvan N, Moini A, et al. Oral Quercetin Supplementation Enhances Adiponectin Receptor Transcript Expression in Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Patients: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Double-Blind Clinical Trial. Cell Journal. 2018 Jan;19(4):627-633. doi: 10.22074/cellj.2018.4577. Epub 2017 Nov 4.



A new review demonstrates acetyl-l-carnitine significantly decreases depressive symptoms

Acetyl L-carnitine is one of the most researched brain nutrients that has been shown to quickly enhance mental focus and energy. It has a similar structure as acetylcholine, and therefore, acetyl l-carnitine can stimulate acetylcholine receptors in the brain. The acetyl group allows it to cross the blood brain barrier, which does not occur with L-carnitine.  Acetyl-l-carnitine will support the brain as well as everything else that l-carnitine can do.

Carnitine is abundant in animal muscle tissue, including red meats. Its main function is to transport fatty acids across the mitochondrial membrane for fatty acid oxidation. Supplementation of carnitine has been studied in many areas including metabolism, cardiovascular disease, and sports enhancement.

According to a new review published last Wednesday in Psychosomatic Medicine, researchers demonstrated that acetyl-l-carnitine can significantly reduce depressive symptoms and an insufficiency of acetyl-L-carnitine can play a role in the risk of developing depression, suggesting dysregulation of fatty acids transport across the mitochondria.

In this study, researchers reviewed 12 random controlled trials (RCTs), 11 in which acetyl-l-carnitine was a monotherapy. In nine studies, there was a total 791 individuals, 231 treated with acetyl-l-carnitine, 216 people treated with placebo and 20 individuals with no intervention. As a result, the analysis showed that acetyl-l-carnitine significantly reduced depressive symptoms. The other 3 RCTs compared acetyl-l-carnitine vs. antidepressants. There were 162 individuals for each group. Acetyl-l-carnitine demonstrated similar effectiveness compared to antidepressants in decreasing depressive symptoms.

Most people associate acetyl L-carnitine with preventing age-related memory decline and slowing Alzheimer’s, however, it is also very effective for increasing mental focus, energy, and optimizing brain health. Acetyl-l-carnitine increases dopamine which enhances focus and motivation. Most individuals dose acetyl-l-carnitine between 500 mg and 3000 mg a day depending on the application. This is one of those nutrients individuals feel an increase in focus and energy within about 15 to 20 minutes. There are no side effects and only long term benefits on brain health and function.

Other brain supportive nutrients to consider are GPC, CDPcholine, gingko biloba, and phosphatidylserine, and fish oil. GPC and CDP-choline are water soluble forms of choline that can cross the blood brain barrier and support brain health. These help make more acetylcholine, neurotransmitters, as well as phosphatidylcholine in the cell membranes. In addition, phosphatidylserine is an essential nutrient for brain function and is not found in the diet. Research has demonstrated that phosphatidylserine improves depressive symptoms, memory, and behavior.

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Veronese N, Stubbs B, et al. Acetyl-l-carnitine Supplementation and the Treatment for Depressive Symptoms: A Systemic Review and Meta-analysis. Psychosomatic Medicine. 2017 October 25.