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Zaretti Nutrition Therapy, Kent, Canterbury, Broadstairs

Health & Nutrition Therapy blog

In a meta-analysis of seven studies consisting of 842,553 participants and 51,123 cases of coronary heart disease (CHD), researchers analysed the relationship between history of gallstones and the development of CHD.

They found that a history of gallstone disease was linked with a 23% increased risk of developing CHD. CHD occurred more often with a history of gallstone disease because of the shared risk factors.

These shared risk factors, including diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and poor diet. Interestingly, individuals with a history of gallstones but otherwise healthy (not obese, diabetic, normal blood pressure) had a greater risk of CHD that their more sick counterparts.

Lu Qi, professor of epidemiology at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana, said: "Our results suggest that patients with gallstone disease should be monitored closely based on a careful assessment of both gallstone and heart disease risk factors. Preventing gallstone disease may also benefit heart health."

The researchers did not identify why gallstone disease and CHD were linked in this study, but one theory is that gallstones may affect bile acid secretion, which has been related to cardiovascular risk factors. In addition, gut microbiota has been related to cardiovascular disease. "Patients with gallstones also have abnormal abundance and metabolism in their gut microbiota", Qi said. 

Consumer related article:

Related research article: Zheng et al (2016) Gallstones and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease: Prospective Analysis of 270 000 Men and Women From 3 US Cohorts and Meta-Analysis. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, August 2016 DOI: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.116.307507

Posted by Maria Zaretti at 13:26

Powerful new evidence from a mice study indicates that dad's nutrition and metabolic health can influence his sons, and even his grandsons.

Male mice that are obese when they conceive put their offspring and grandsons at significant risk of developing metabolic disease – long before they are even born.

The offspring are at significant risk of getting very sick if they eat a 'junk food diet', even for a very short time. They quickly developed fatty liver disease and pre-diabetic symptoms, such as elevated glucose and insulin in the bloodstream.

So, to translate this research to humans, if your father or grandfather was overweight or obese, you might need to be particularly careful about what you eat, and dietary intervention may help you avoid the deleterious effects of metabolic programming. And, as a father-to-be, it's worth considering whether your own health could impact on your children, and their children in turn.

It's important note that this predisposition isn't genetic. Instead, it's acquired. This is good news because it means the damage can be undone and is ultimately reversible.

baby hand

Consumer related article:

Related research article: Cropley et al., (2016) ‘Male-lineage transmission of an acquired metabolic phenotype induced by grand-paternal obesity’, Molecular Metabolism, 5(8), pp. 699–708. doi: 10.1016/j.molmet.2016.06.008

Image: © koi88 / Fotolia

Posted by Maria Zaretti at 11:44

Recent research indicates that although the cause of ME/CFS is unknown, "gut dysbiosis could be contributing to some of the symptoms and their severity. Developing therapeutic interventions aimed at reducing local inflammation, restoring gastrointestinal (GI) tract immunity and integrity and modifying the intestinal microbiome (gut flora) may ameliorate ME/CFS symptoms in a number of affected patients".

This research indicates that dietary changes may therefore be helpful since diet has been shown to to modulation of GI immunity & integrity and gut flora.   

  CFS Credit: © Nomad_Soul / Fotolia

Consumer related article:

Related research article: Giloteaux et al,. (2016) Reduced diversity and altered composition of the gut microbiome in individuals with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome. Microbiome; 4 (1) DOI: 10.1186/s40168-016-0171-4

Image Credit: © Nomad_Soul / Fotolia

Posted by Maria Zaretti at 17:35

Apples top the

The Environmental Working Group - a consumer health non-profit organization - has published its "dirty dozen" list of fruits and vegetables most contaminated by pest- and weed-killer which you should try to buy organic, and apples tops this list. Most of the pesticides found in apples concentrated in the skin, but the skin is also unusually rich in beneficial anti-oxidant nutrients which will be lost if you peel them. Anti-oxidants help neutralise harmful chemicals that damage tissues and may contribute to the development of chronic disease such as heart disease. Choosing organic apples means you can eat apples with their skins on whilst avoid problems related to pesticide residues.



Posted by Maria Zaretti at 20:15

Acid-alkaline balance and good health!

Friday 10th August 2012

Acid-alkaline balance and good health!

What is acid-alkaline balance

In all of us blood needs to be maintained at a pH of 7.35 (very mildly alkaline) and the body's regulatory systems works hard to maintain this. If blood pH deviates too far to the acid side, oxygen decreases and metabolism is less effective so the body works less efficiently - this can lead to sickness.

Our bodies are exposed to a cascade of acidic substances every day – food, pollution, stress, even its own internal bio-chemicals contribute to the load. When faced with a lot of acid our body pulls alkaline minerals out of body tissues to compensate. If there are insufficient alkaline reserves in the tissues they are recruited from elsewhere, mainly being leached from bones as carbonates, which also releases calcium, and magnesium from muscle.

Common symptoms of over-acidity

Bone quality declines and the risk for osteoporosis increases when calcium is leached from bones due to high acidity.

Excess acid can be dumped in tissues for storage creating more symptoms including overweight. It is thought that the body will sequester away excess acid in fat cells, in a protective manoeuvre, to keep acids away from our vital organs. So if you are overly acidic you may have difficulty loosing weight, because you body is reluctant to let the fat go.

Microforms (bacteria, yeast, fungus) are thought to thrive in acidity, and low oxygen levels that come with acidity. The toxic waste produced as a by-product of the microforms metabolic activity can produce symptoms in your body such as fatigue, allergies and poor mood.

How acidic are you?

pH test strips are a convenient way to monitor your acid-alkaline balance. Saliva pH varies a lot so urine pH is considered a more reliable indicator. Urine pH varies too, in response to what you have eaten, so measuring in the morning may result in overly-acidic reading (because during sleep the body deals with and excretes acids), so measures taken later in the day are more indicativeUsed daily, pH test strips are great for helping you realise you are too acidic, and for monitoring pH improvement and keeping you motivated towards long-term change.

All test strips are open to interpretation, so it is important to look at your bigger health picture when alkalising - your symptoms of over-acidity, your overall health, diet, lifestyle etc. - and for this a personal consultation with your Nutritional Therapist to identify and  meet your individualised needs will be helpful. In the meantime, below are my top tips for rebalancing your pH, to get you started towards pH balance and greater vitality.

Top tips for pH balance

Reduce acid forming foods in your diet (animal products including dairy, sugar, white flour products, coffee, alcohol).

Increasing alkaline fruit and vegetables, especially green leafy veggies to help neutralise the acid.

Drink plenty of water to hydrate the cells and flush out the stored acid waste.

Ongoing stress increases acidity in the body so reduce stress and find ways to relax that suit you.

Taking an alkalising supplement that supplies calcium, magnesium and bicarbonates (sodium, potassium). This can help replenish buffer reserves and restore acid-alkaline balance to the body quicker, whilst you are working on longer term dietary change.

Young O Redford-Young S (2010) The pH Miracle Paitkus


Posted by Maria Zaretti at 13:21