It seems that nature has provided us with countless opportunities to maximize our health. I have often taught the truth that your ability to heal comes from inside you. This leads me to the conclusion that the only way for you to truly be healthy is to function at 100%. You are not what you eat. You are what you can assimilate from what you eat. This being the case let us work on optimum nervous system function first and then consider other sources that will complement the competence of the body.
There is a good deal of hard science that concludes that supplementation with certain substances will increase your ability to cope with the harsh environment that we live in. I am completely convinced that anybody over 40, or anybody who is involved in serious athletic endeavors at any age, should be supplementing their food sources with antioxidant nutrients. These nutrients are crucial to allow rejuvenation of your heart, strengthen your immune system, maximize your brainpower, reverse the aging process and decrease the damage to your joints that allows the formation of arthritis.
Lester Packer, Ph.D. has studied antioxidants for much of his very long career and has set out to educate the public regarding the health benefits of the “Antioxidant Network”. In a 1999 book called “The Antioxidant Miracle”, Dr. Packer lists the nutrients that are responsible for the powerful effects of rejuvenation. This book tells us that the best way to get full benefit from antioxidants is to take them in what is described as a Network. Taken properly they should boost the effectiveness of each other and allow maximum health potential. I recommend that any of you highly theoretical, information craving folks read the book.
The bottom line is that antioxidants do battle against and neutralize free radicals. Free radicals are produced by the body during energy production and will result in injury to healthy tissues and cells. They are also present in the air that we breathe. Free radicals are the culprit in the aging process. Left unchecked, they will result in many disease processes ranging from arthritis to cancer to heart disease. There are many more diseases that result from free radicals. Believe me, you’re better off without them.
Here is a synopsis of the Network Antioxidants and a short description of their effects:
Lipoic acid has been used safely and effectively in Europe for over 30 years as a treatment for Diabetes. Research suggests that it also protects against stroke and heart disease, two of the leading causes of death in the Western world. It also boosts levels of glutathione, which is important, because when glutathione is taken orally it is not well absorbed by the body.
Vitamin E is one of the most important and well studied of the antioxidants. Vitamin E protects lipoproteins from oxidation. Oxidation of lipoproteins is believed to be the first step in atherosclerosis, hardening of the arteries, which can lead to heart disease. Beside protection from heart disease Vitamin E also reduces the risk of prostate cancer and slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
Vitamin C is not produced in our body and must be obtained through food or supplementation. It has the ability to neutralize free radicals, the little critters that are responsible for the aging process. Vitamin C is essential for great skin and protects against heart disease. Research has shown that people who take Vitamin C live longer, healthier lives than those who don’t.
Coenzyme Q10 (Co Q10) works synergistically with vitamin E to protect the fatty part of the cell from free radical attack. Many studies have confirmed that Co Q10 is effective for the treatment of heart failure, angina, and high blood pressure. There is currently a lot of investigation into the possible treatment of age-related brain diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
Glutathione is produced in the body but it’s level declines when we reach the age of 40. There are other reasons that glutathione levels can decrease. I believe that any athlete at any age can have compromised glutathione levels. Athletic training causes increased free radical development and glutathione is important in the battle against free radicals. Low levels of glutathione have been linked to premature death. You must keep your levels of glutathione high.
You should also be taking the following supplements to get the most out of your antioxidants:
Folic Acid is particularly important for women. It protects against cervical cancer and birth defects. Men with low levels of folic acid seem to have an increased incidence of heart attacks.
Biotin is a B vitamin that is necessary for the function of insulin. Lipoic acid can compete with biotin and cause the levels of biotin to fall. If you supplement with Lipoic acid you need to supplement with biotin.
Vitamin B6 protects against homocystenemia, a metabolic problem that can lead to heart disease.
Ginkgo Biloba seems to enhance memory as well as act as a strong antioxidant. It also helps with the leading cause of male impotence, atherosclerosis.
Selenium is not an antioxidant but is an essential component of antioxidant enzymes. It also gives a big boost to vitamin E. It has been shown to be effective in the fight against heart disease and cancer.
I want you to strongly consider learning more about these supplements. If you don’t want to learn about them then just take my educated, analytical, compassionate word for it. You need these in order to maximize your potential. I want you to live a long, healthy life filled with joy and energy.
I will do my part in the detection and correction of nerve interference for you. It’s up to you to take some responsibility for your intake of high quality foods and antioxidants. If I have stimulated any questions about supplementation, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All is Well,
Dr. Tim, Chiropractor