Resveratrol: more evidence of its potential benefits

Resveratrol, found in red wine and now widely used as a supplement, is back in the news this month. A research report in the highly respected journal Science identifies the precise mechanism by which resveratrol regulates sirtuins, proteins in the body which have been linked to the prevention of many age-related diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s, and Type-2 diabetes.

This finding adds further support to the idea that resveratrol or a derivative of resveratrol might represent a breakthrough treatment for some of the major disease threats faced by humans as they age.

We first read about the new research in our hometown paper, The New York Times, but the story has been widely reported. (See reference to the article in Science below.)

NYBC stocks Resveratrol and Resveratrol Synergy from Jarrow. Of course we’d welcome any reports from our members about their use of these products.

Reference: Hubbard, et al. Evidence for a common mechanism of SIRT1 regulation by allosteric activators. Science, March 8, 2013.

Alpha lipoic acid for diabetic sensory neuropathy

A recent review article suggested that a dose of 600 mg alpha lipoic acid (ALA) daily administered for up to 5 weeks could offer benefits in symptoms of diabetic sensory neuropathy without significant side effects. This review also notes that ALA is already approved for treatment of neuropathy in Germany. Furthermore, it seems obviously a better choice than the opioids often prescribed for diabetic neuropathy pain, as these induce addiction.

For more on alpha lipoic acid, see the NYBC entries:
Jarrow ALA sustained and Montiff ALA. NYBC also stocks Jarrow ALA plus Biotin; biotin is a B vitamin that has also been recommended for diabetes.

REFERENCE:

McIlduff CE, Rutkove SB, Critical appraisal of the use of alpha lipoic acid (thioctic acid) in the treatment of symptomatic diabetic polyneuropathy. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management. Sept. 2011 Volume 2011:7 Pages 377 – 385

Resveratrol and Resveratrol Synergy supplements

We were interested to see in today’s online edition of our hometown newspaper, The New York Times, a news report on the latest research about resveratrol and related compounds:

“Drug Is Found to Extend the Lives of Obese Mice”

The article points to the promise of continuing research on resveratrol derivatives, while also reviewing some of the questions that remain before large-scale human trials of the sort that can lead the breakthroughs in drug development. One of NYBC’s concerns, as always, has been that the real benefits of the non-prescription supplement itself could be ignored in the quest for some patentable super-drug (which would undoubtedly make the pharmaceutical company rich, no doubt!)

So, to review, there have been a number of research developments in just the past couple of years about the basic resveratrol molecule itself–the very same one that you can find in supplements now stocked by NYBC. Here’s an excerpt from our post earlier this year:

For a while it seemed like the excitement about resveratrol–the molecule famously found in red wine–had died down.

A few years ago widely publicized studies showed that resveratrol had potential as a life-extending supplement (it showed that capacity in lab animals). And there was buzz when companies raised hundreds of millions in venture capital to explore the possibilities further. One catch with that high-profile research was that it involved very high doses of resveratrol. (The equivalent of drinking hundreds of bottles of red wine a day!)

However, in just the past couple of years, scientific interest has come back to resveratrol, and this time it is pointing to substantial health benefits without those massive doses.

First, cardiovascular health. In 2009, a Univ. of Wisconsin research team reported that low doses of resveratrol in the diet of middle-aged mice could have many of the same effects as the high dose reseveratrol, especially in terms of protecting heart health. Second, in 2010, Johns Hopkins researchers reported on a mechanism by which resveratrol shielded mice from stroke damage to the brain. A single small dose of the compound increased levels of an enzyme that protects nerve cells in the brain from damage when blood flow is disrupted by stroke.

It’s also just been announced that the scientific research organization of Denmark will run a multi-year study of resveratrol for diabetes. This announcement follows the news from December 2010 that our hometown Albert Einstein Medical Center has been awarded an NIH grant, also for a study of resveratrol and diabetes.

All in all, resveratrol seems to remain a very promising research topic!

You can find resveratrol in two forms at the NYBC. (Resveratrol Synergy adds some of the additional parts of the grape that are thought to have health benefits, and combines those with green tea extract, another food extract that researchers believe may have health benefits.)

Resveratrol

Resveratrol Synergy

Vitamin D, HIV, diabetes

A poster at the recent Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections reported that Vitamin D supplementation decreases risk of diabetes and possibly cardiovascular complications for people with HIV. The study looked at data from 1574 patients over about 2 and half years. 61% of the patients were “undetectable” for HIV RNA, and at the start of the study, 14% showed evidence of “metabolic syndrome,” which generally points toward development of diabetes.

The study authors found that those patients who supplemented with 1000IU of Vitamin D per day had a substantially lower risk of developing full-blown Type 2 diabetes, which carries with it a higher risk of heart and blood vessel disease. However, they also found that this level of supplementation was not sufficient to completely make up for Vitamin D deficiencies in a significant number of the patients, and so they suggest that a higher dose could prove even more helpful for those with very low starting levels of the vitamin.

Reference: Guaraldi, G, et al. Vitamin D3 Supplementation Decreases The Risk of Diabetes Mellitus Among Patients with HIV Infection. CROI, 2011.

This study adds further evidence to NYBC’s conviction that Vitamin D supplementation, generally at 1000IU – 2000IU/daily (or, in case of substantial deficiency, even higher) is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIV. The expense is so low, the side effects basically nonexistent, and the health benefits so convincing that it doesn’t make sense for people with HIV not to supplement with this vitamin!

You can read more about current studies on the health benefits of Vitamin D on this blog.

A simple blood test for Vitamin D is available to check levels–ask your doctor.

Note that NYBC stocks:

Vitamin D – 1000IU

Vitamin D – 2500IU

Vitamin D- 5000IU

These Vitamin D formulations provide a convenient way to take the “sunshine vitamin” at the levels suggested by many recent studies.

Resveratrol again!

For a while it seemed like the excitement about resveratrol–the molecule famously found in red wine–had died down.

A few years ago widely publicized studies showed that resveratrol had potential as a life-extending supplement (it showed that capacity in lab animals). And there was buzz when companies raised hundreds of millions in venture capital to explore the possibilities further. One catch with that high-profile research was that it involved very high doses of resveratrol. (The equivalent of drinking hundreds of bottles of red wine a day!)

However, in just the past couple of years, scientific interest has come back to resveratrol, and this time it is pointing to substantial health benefits without those massive doses.

First, cardiovascular health. In 2009, a Univ. of Wisconsin research team reported that low doses of resveratrol in the diet of middle-aged mice could have many of the same effects as the high dose reseveratrol, especially in terms of protecting heart health. Second, in 2010, John Hopkins researchers reported on a mechanism by which resveratrol shielded mice from stroke damage to the brain. A single small dose of the compound increased levels of an enzyme that protects nerve cells in the brain from damage when blood flow is disrupted by stroke.

It’s also just been announced that the scientific research organization of Denmark will run a multi-year study of resveratrol for diabetes. This announcement follows the news from December 2010 that our hometown Albert Einstein Medical Center has been awarded an NIH grant, also for a study of resveratrol and diabetes.

All in all, resveratrol seems to remain a very promising research topic!

You can find resveratrol in two forms at the NYBC. (Resveratrol Synergy adds some of the additional parts of the grape that are thought to have health benefits, and combines those with green tea extract, another food extract that researchers believe may have health bnenefits.)

Resveratrol

Resveratrol Synergy

Alpha lipoic acid and diabetes

As we reported earlier on this blog, alpha lipoic acid (often abbreviated ALA) was studied and found beneficial in a large trial for peripheral neuropathy (pain, tingling in extremities) related to diabetes. Now here’s a 2009 update on alpha lipoic acid, which asserts its general benefit and usefulness for Type 2 diabetes, and explains some of the mechanisms behind those benefits. (We’ve highlighted the key findings of this review.)

Poh Z, Goh KP. A current update on the use of alpha lipoic Acid in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Endocr Metab Immune Disord Drug Targets. 2009 Dec;9(4):392-398.

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) which is characterised by insulin resistance, is closely linked to the triad of glucolipotoxicity, inflammation and oxidative stress. Increased adiposity, leading to increased free fatty acids (FFAs), contributes to insulin resistance by disrupting the signal transduction pathway of insulin mediated glucose disposal, and causes impaired insulin secretion. Hyperglycaemia and dyslipidaemia driven oxidative stress resulting from enhanced free-radical formation and/or defects in antioxidant defence is implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetic neuropathy (DN). This and other inflammatory pathways account for a complex network of interacting metabolic factors responsible for causing diabetes and her complications. There is growing evidence that Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) has beneficial effects on the treatment of T2DM and some of its complications. It represents an attractive pharmacological target in the treatment of T2DM by modulating the signal transduction pathways in insulin resistance and antagonizing the oxidative and inflammatory stresses, which are major players in the pathogenesis of this disorder. A potent anti-oxidant and free radical scavenger, ALA also targets cellular signal transduction pathways which increases glucose uptake and utilization, thus providing specific targeted therapy in the treatment of insulin resistance and diabetic neuropathy. Apart from the rare risk of Insulin Autoimmune Syndrome (IAS), ALA has shown to be relatively safe, even in patients with renal and liver failure. This review focuses and summarises the molecular mechanisms of T2DM, and underlines the therapeutic value of ALA in this globally significant disease.

Please also consult NYBC’s basic info sheet on Supplements for Diabetes.

Please visit the NYBC Catalog for forther information on these supplements.

For information on Bitter Melon, please email contact.nybc@newyorkbuyersclub.org

NAC + Alpha Lipoic = ThiolNAC

That’s the equation that sums up NYBC’s combination antioxidant supplement, which includes both NAC (N-acetylcysteine) and alpha lipoic acid. These two are among the most researched antioxidant supplements, with studies of NAC covering issues such as pulmonary function, liver function, HIV, while alpha lipoic acid (sometimes called “thioctic acid,” hence the “thiol” part of our product name) has been investigated for liver health, neuropathy, diabetes, HIV. As a combination, they appear in such products as K-PAX and SuperNutrition’s Super Immune Multivitamin.

NYBC’s combination product ThiolNAC was designed to meet the needs of those who can benefit from supplementation with both of these antioxidants. By combining the two in one supplement, there is also a significant savings in cost as well–always one of the main goals of the nonprofit co-op.

For more information, see the NYBC entry on ThiolNAC:

http://nybcsecure.org/product_info.php?products_id=169