You may know that the sun and certain foods are good sources of vitamin D. But did you know that due to chronic kidney disease, millions of Americans can't convert the form of vitamin D produced by the sun or found in food and over-the-counter vitamins into the active form of vitamin D used by the body? This means that even if you're taking vitamin D pills, getting adequate sunlight or eating foods rich in vitamin D, your bones and organs may be at risk due to a deficiency in "active" vitamin D.Chronic Kidney Disease Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a condition in which kidney function slows and the kidneys stop doing critical jobs such as filtering toxins from the bloodstream. The severity of CKD is classified in stages, with stage 5, also known as kidney failure or end-stage renal disease (ESRD), being the most severe. Patients with ESRD require dialysis, a procedure where several times a week for several hours their bloodstream is routed through a machine that filters toxins.40 million Americans with or at risk for chronic kidney diseaseEarly-stage CKD-before dialysis is necessary-is often undetected and can worsen with declines in kidney function. According to the National Kidney Foundation, 20 million Americans-1 in 9-have CKD and another 20 million are at increased risk. So what does CKD have to do with vitamin D, let alone your bones? Before the body can use vitamin D, it has to be "activated." Inactive vitamin D-the vitamin D you get in the form of over-the-counter pills, food or sunlight-is activated by two steps, one in the liver and the other in the kidneys. Then, much like a key fits into a car ignition and starts the engine, activated vitamin D fits into vitamin D receptors located in numerous tissues and systems throughout the body and triggers processes that help maintain bone, the heart, the immune system and so on. For people with CKD, however, their kidneys' ability to activate adequate amounts of vitamin D deteriorates as their overall kidney function decreases. In fact, people with kidney disease may eventually lose the ability to activate vitamin D altogether. Secondary hyperparathyroidismWhen levels of active vitamin D are low or inadequate within the body, a serious complication of CKD called secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT) can occur. SHPT can lead to a wide range of problems, including damage to bones and many vital organs.How is SHPT prevented and treated?When CKD and SHPT are detected early, the conditions may be managed and disease progression may be slowed. Remember, people with stage 3 or 4 CKD who develop SHPT cannot convert vitamin D into its active form within their own kidneys. Experts suggest that these patients with stage 3 or 4 CKD and SHPT take an activated form of vitamin D medication-which is available only by prescription-to correct their vitamin D deficiency and thereby treat SHPT. Managing SHPT lowers risk for bone loss or fracture, cardiac complications and dangerous mineral and hormonal imbalances.
Testosterone Support Supplements (or Testosterone Aids) are meant to enhance your performance, increase muscle gains and make you bigger. Testosterone is the master male hormone. Testosterone supplementation can increase male sex drive, strengthen bones, muscles, decrease body fat, improve thinking ability, boost energy levels and guard against the onset of depression and heart disease.TestosteroneTestosteroneis a powerful anabolic hormone that stimulates and controls the development of muscle, bone, skin, sex organs, and most other masculine, physical features. Recently, scientists have discovered that testosterone also aids mental function, enhancing both visual and perceptual skills. Male testosterone is produced in the testes by a group of cells known as the Leydig cells. These cells begin secreting high doses of testosterone during puberty to trigger increased lean muscle mass, sex organ development, bone formation and higher energy levels. Testosterone levels peak during a man's early to mid twenties.Testosterone in Elderly MenAs a man ages, the amount of testosterone produced by the cells decreases. By the age of sixty, the average man will have lost nearly 50% of his testosterone supply. In addition, other factors (such as stress, lack of sleep, physical inactivity, the use of prescription medication and drinking) can cause testosterone levels to drastically decline. Although there is a growing awareness of the vital role testosterone plays in a man's overall health, the vast majority of men still don't recognize the key symptoms of testosterone deficiency.Testosterone Deficiency & Symptoms OfTestosterone deficiency symptoms include depression, fatigue, low sex drive, irritability, loss of facial/body hair, thinning and/or wrinkling of skin, weight gain, and the weakening of both bone and muscle tissue. Eventually, imbalances of testosterone can set the stage for the development of more serious disease. Low testosterone levels can also disrupt the body's blood sugar metabolism, leading to obesity and diabetes. Chronic deficiencies may also promote the early onset of osteoporosis and heart disease.Benefits of Testosterone Support Supplementation testosterone supplements can increase your sex drive "testosterone supplements" increase muscle while decreasing fat testosterone supplements improve energy levels
If you are serious about building muscle mass or sculpting your body you most likely supplement your diet with commercially available whey or soy protein powders (and possibly other supplements). No doubt within a short period of time you discovered the protein shakes whey powders produce may not be the best tasting drinks you've ever had. Despite this you try to stick with them because your goal is a better body and a supplement shake that doesn't taste so great is simply a sacrifice you make.People find that the flavor of the protein shake powder they paid a good money for quickly gets boring. If you are taking your protein shakes two or even three times a day it can become a real chore. This is when people start to experiment a little by adding other ingredients to make their protein shakes taste a little better.You can soon turn your boring, often tasteless, protein shakes into mouth-watering bodybuilding or dieting delights. All you need to have to get started is a blender and a little imagination.Choosing What to Put in Your Protein ShakesBefore rushing off to your refrigerator to blend everything in site, let's go through some basic principles you will want to consider first. Not only do you want to create the best tasting shakes but you should also aim to make the most effective protein shakes for your dieting requirements. This is important because there is no point throwing full fat ice cream, chocolate sauce, peanut butter and full fat milk all together to create a wonderful tasting fat gaining shake. You need to be a little wise when choosing your ingredients.So what kinds of ingredients make good choices for your shakes? I recommend using the following tips when getting your ingredients from the supermarket or refrigerator:
- Try to keep as many of your ingredients as natural as possible. A good example of this is using natural peanut butter instead of regular peanut butter. The natural version has better protein content and also natural fats that are important in your diet.
- Fresh fruit should be used whenever possible. Fruit contains the carbohydrates that will fuel your workouts and your day. The complex sugars in fruit are important to any diet (unlike the simple sugars in sweets, sodas, etc).
- Think about ingredients that will boost your shake's protein content. For example, you could throw a handful of nuts into the blender for a little extra protein without making the shake much thicker. You could add a few raw egg whites (if you are worried about eating raw eggs you may be able to find treated egg whites in cartons at your supermarket). You could always simply dump an extra scoop of whey powder in there as well.
- Make sure you have enough liquids. If you get a little too carried away you may discover your shake is easier to eat with a spoon then drink from a glass. When you first start creating your shakes it is a good idea to add your liquids (water, fat-free milk, fruit juices, etc.) in stages so that you get your desired consistency.
- Examine the nutritional information for each ingredient and consider the impact it will have on your dieting goals. For example, you may be opting for fat free (skimmed) milk if you aren't trying to gain weight.
- Always know what your goal is and make your shakes accordingly. If you are trying to shed the fat you will be skipping the types of ingredients that add too many carbohydrates and fats while trying to increase the protein content.
- Think of how you might create a unique flavor. You can try things like cinnamon, vanilla, honey, coconut milk, etc. Once you get the hang of this you will see the possibilities are endless.
Lactobacillus acidophilus is a lactic acid producing bacteria. Some scientifics think that acidophilus have beneficial effects on digestion and overall health. Acidophilus can be found in yogurt and other dairy products, which named acidophilus as probiotics.Acidophilus aids digestive system, because different factors decrease the number of lactic acid producing bacteria that live and work in the gastrointestinal tract and protect us from harmful disease-causing bacteria. Among these factors, it is possible to find narcotics, alcohol, diet deficiencies, aging, antibiotics, drugs, medications, nicotine, and stressful living. The digestion of food begins in the alimentary canal, mouth and stomach, and finally in the intestines, where millions of microorganisms, working simultaneously, metabolize the partially-digested food. Digestion can be impaired, short-changing us of the full nutritional value from foods, if there is too small a colony of L. acidophilus and other friendly bacteria, such as L. bulgaricus and L. bifidus. Also a fewer quantity of key vitamins will be synthesized and the immune system may be rendered less effective. According to some health professionals, acidophilus aids the digestive process, helps correct constipation, diarrhea, mucous colitis and diverticulitis. It also reduces blood cholesterol, enhances the absorption of nutrients, sweetens bad breath, treats acne and other skin disorders, conquers harmful bacteria and certain viruses, helps alleviate candidiasis and other vaginal infections, and may even prevent cancer. There is no solid scientific evidence for these claims according to some experts, but lactic acid-producing microorganisms, such as L. acidophilus, have been called a second immune system, because they put the brakes on growth of disease-causing bacteria, such as shigella-caused dysentery and salmonella and various types of diarrhea.
What are food supplements and why do we need them? Food supplements are medicines we take to enhance our diets. They come in various shapes and sizes and a wide range of natural and synthetic elements.At first glance it may seem that with all the processing and food technology our food goes through we really should not need these food supplements, as our food arrives to our tables looking so picture perfect. However when we look deeper we see a very different story.Have you ever walked into your local grocery store and looked at the wonderful display of fruits and vegetables. The fruit is piled in beautiful pyramids and looks so good that you just cannot resist taking some home to eat.The beautiful looking fruits we see in the stores with their shiny exteriors and inviting appearance are not what they seem. The shiny look is not the natural bloom of a healthy looking fruit it is merely wax. Why would our fruits be dipped in wax? The first reason is to preserve it in the long journey from the farm to the grocery store, and secondly to fool consumers into thinking that the fruit is better than it is by its glossy appearance.When we dig even deeper into our piece of fruit we discover that nutrition wise it is not what it should be. From its very birth it has been subjected to artificial fertilizers and pesticides that have depleted its nutrient worth. Added to this it has been picked when it is unripe before it has had chance to produce the natural nutrients that should be present within it. Therefore the fruit we are so impressed with on the outside tells a very different story within.It is not just the fruits in the store it is all the food that we buy and consume. When examined it will all tell the same sad story, things are not what they appear to be. This is why to preserve our health food supplements are necessary.One of the most important classes of nutrients that should be found in natural foods like fruits and vegetables are Glyconutrients. They are a collection of 8 essential saccarides. They are: Mannose Glucose Galactose Xylose Fuctos (not fructose) N-acetylglucosamine N-acetylneuramic acid N-acetylgalactosamineThese Glyconutrients used to be found in many fruits and vegetables but due to the above mentioned facts are now found in lesser quantities. Therefore food supplements have been developed containing these nutrients. One of the best known is Ambrotose, originally derived from the Aloe Vera plant.This supplement helps your body heal itself by strengthening the immune system. It also helps the body by aiding and healing the digestive system. Glyconutrients play a vital part in helping your body function well and maintaining your health. Many of the underlying health problems we face today are due to the lack of Glyconutrients. Taking these supplements will help you live a healthier life and enjoy life to the fullest.Note: Glyconutrients are not intended to heal, treat, or cure any disease.