Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Good Day Sunshine

I can't believe the sun is back!  The height of the sun in the sky makes such a huge difference, it's hard to describe unless you live somewhere crazy like Fairbanks, Alaska, where in Winter the sun barely rises above the horizon and in Summer barely dips below.  While the sun never really gets very high in the sky, even in Summer, it does get up high enough for the UV light to penetrate the atmosphere and warm things up, but more importantly, hit my skin at just the right angle to produce Vitamin D and give me a nice tan.

If you are a science geek like me, you'll like this online sun tracker. It tells the angle of the sun on any day in any city.  Today, here, the sun hit 27.6 degrees at its highest.  In New York, the sun was at 50 degrees of angle at solar noon.  In Southern California, 60 degrees.  I believe the optimum height for Vitamin D production is between 25-45 degrees, something to do with the angle and UV-A, UV-B light. Here is a study, if you like to read!  



This was supposed to be a post about Vitamin D, and maybe it will turn into one in the comments, but I'm going to take, instead, a cue from blog co-author Gemma, and leave you with song and dance instead!

 
So, let's talk about Vitamin D.  Anyone measure their blood levels?  Who supplements?  Study question: Why do doctors prescribe Vitamin D-2?

What about food sources?  Did you know putting mushrooms in the sun causes them to form Vitamin D that you can then eat?

Are supplements as good as sunshine?

And, let's read some more:

Inflammation and vitamin D: the infection connection (click "download pdf" for full)

 In case that link does not work, some excerpts:

- Evidence that vitamin D supplementation cures or prevents chronic disease is inconsistent.
- Attention to the alternate hypothesis—low 25(OH)D is a consequence of the chronic disease process, provoked by persistent intracellular infection—may be crucial to reversing this trend and needs further research.
-  Circulating levels of 25(OH)D may not be an accurate reflection of vitamin D status.
- Human cells live in harmony with many types of microbes but some microbes may become pathogenic under commonly experienced conditions.
- The innate immune system is designed to kill pathogens via 1,25(OH)2D- mediated VDR transcription of anti-microbial peptides but microbes may use strategies which down-regulate the VDR in order to live and reproduce within nucleated host cells.
- Failure of the immune system to mount an effective anti-microbial response results in persistent intracellular infection. This induces relentless inflammation (immunopathology) which causes tissue damage and dis- ease symptoms.
 
And, a D-lightful abstract.

- Throughout evolution, exposure to sunlight and the photosynthesis of vitamin D(3) in the skin has been critically important for the evolution of land vertebrates.
- It is estimated that exposure in a bathing suit to 1 minimal erythemal dose (MED) is equivalent to ingesting between 10,000 and 25,000 IU of vitamin D(2). The importance of sunlight for providing most humans with their vitamin D requirement is well documented by the seasonal variation in circulating levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D].
- The associations regarding increased risk of common deadly cancers, autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, and cardiovascular disease with living at higher latitudes and being prone to vitamin D deficiency should alert all health care professionals about the importance of vitamin D for overall health and well being.

Let's talk!

58 comments:

  1. I first discovered the importance of vitamin D about 7 years ago, and have been supplementing ever since. Every year in spring the dermatologists come out and say slip, slap, slop: slip on a shirt, slap on a hat and slop on lots of sunscreen. This effectively stops 97% of production of vitamin D by the body, leading to dificiency of D. There is a report called Sunlight Robbery which prompted me to start taking supplements.

    How much vit D the body makes, depends on where you live (in Amsterdam, Miami, or in Brisbane. Holland lies between 31-33 degrees latitude, so I have to spend a longer time in the sun, when it shines!! The general advice is face and hands for 5 minutes in the sun. Holick (Boston) pointed that is sufficient if you are living in the tropics, but not in Holland. Also age is a factor to take into account. A baby will absorb vit D much quicker than an old bird like me. Skin colour also plays an imprtant role: the darker the skin the longer you have to stay in the sun in Holland or Alaska to get the same amount of vit D.

    So really, depending on where you live, how long you can spend outdoors in the sun you will need to supplement to keep your vit D levels optimal.

    In the winter I take 4000 iE per day and in the summer I take 1000 iE 3 times a week to keep my levels as high as possible, because we/re lucky if we get sunshine one day a week.

    I have found that I function much better, don't feel so depressed. People who suffer from SAD (seasonal affective disorder) are deficient in vit D. I learned that the optimal dose for each person is when you feel "happy" or "bubbly".

    Jo tB

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    1. Haha, I lived in Holland for 3 years...I know that feeling of sun-deprived! But I was also impressed how everyone came out into the sun on nice days. Scheveningen (and, yes, I can pronounce it!) is such a magical place. It is such a shame how modern medicine made us all afraid of the sun.

      I take Vit D, about 5000IU 3-4X a week, from Sep - March and none in summer. My blood level stays right around 45-50 year round.

      I think that supplemental D is a very poor substitute for sun on your shoulders, but I also realize that 6 months is a long time without any sunshine.

      I need to dig into that study and find out what "1 minimal erythemal dose (MED) is equivalent to ingesting between 10,000 and 25,000 IU of vitamin D(2)." is.

      Thanks

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  2. What a timely post! Thank you Tim and Gemma!

    Apparently body 'fatness' also plays a role. The most adipose tissue you have the more it 'hordes' vitamin D and therefore the more vitamin D you need to consume.

    According to Allan Markin (and his website) the recommendation for vitamin D published in 2010 (which is used by Health Canada) has "a drastic statistical error made during the calculation of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for vitamin D". Scary thought since doctors will use this information to treat and advise patients.

    I've also read that one 'should' take vitamin K2 and magnesium with vitamin D. Any papers or thoughts about this and if so any ratios between the vitamins one might consider when supplementing?

    Nicole

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    1. Kind of ties in with circadian rhythm per your request! Vit D, sleep, microbes all intimately related, for sure.

      I've also read about K2 and magnesium and used to take them religiously, but now just try to get through food. I will pop a K2 pill when I think about it just because I still have half a bottle sitting there, and not because I'm 100% convinced we need it...but, I go back and forth on that...GabKad is my main cause of teetering, lol.

      K2 and D are very much tied to the gut. There were a couple studies a while back that showed if you fed (rats?) resistant starch, their Vit D levels stayed higher.

      Ah, here: Dietary resistant starch prevents urinary excretion of vitamin D metabolites and maintains circulating 25-hydroxycholecalciferol concentrations in Zucker diabetic fatty rats.

      Dietary resistant starch prevents urinary excretion of 25-hydroxycholecalciferol and vitamin D-binding protein in type 1 diabetic rats.

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    2. Thanks Tim. Vitamin K2 and prostate cancer: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18400723
      http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/87/4/985.full (same authors).

      If that don't convince, what will? LOL!

      The Menatretanone has a 72 hour half life so taking one capsule twice per week of the 5 mg strength is plenty. Probably 1 per week is fine too especially if you have dietary sources of this vitamin.

      Even large doses of K1 will reduce incidence of cancer. I disagree with this study because i think that vitamin D of 75 nmol/l as being 'replete' is not 'optimum'. Also they didn't ensure the women were 'replete' or anything in regards to vitamin A. http://journals.plos.org/plosmedicine/article?id=10.1371/journal.pmed.0050196

      In Japan and Sweden high dose vitamin K2 is used for osteoporosis. In Japan especially it has been implemented for a long time. But Japan is ahead of the rest of us because their vitamin B12 cut off is 550 pg/ml. They take these things seriously over there. Over here it's 134 pg/ml or 178 pg/ml depending..... even the CDC has higher standards. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/b12/detection.html

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    3. Yep. K is the big one. It does seem to be highest in all the high fiber foods we love around here: Kale, onions, leeks, peppers, spices, greens, cabbage....

      I'll probably continue to supplement occasionally as a bet-hedging strategy.

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    4. Well, I just looked at my blood test numbers for vitamin D and realised even though it is considered within normal range the scientific papers say that it is not within optimal range.

      So I wondered what else is out there and sometimes these 'conversations' lead to other interesting ideas and links.

      I really enjoyed that lengthy paper with its suggestions. I can't believe that in the 50s there where advertisement to sunbathing your babies. LOL. And sadly, I have recently heard of a baby/child being diagnosed with rickets.

      I've also found this website with a pretty graph call Disease Incidence
      Prevention Chart at grassrootshealth.net. It really 'paints the picture'.

      I am grateful for your blog and everyone who comments here. For now I have a clear picture as to where my health is heading (guided by my blood tests). And it ain't pretty. But more importantly, what to do about it.

      Nicole


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  3. When I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in 2008, my first doctor did not have my Vitamin D tested along with all my other initial blood work. I left her after about 4 months. I did eventually get tested in 2009 and it was 39. My Vitamin D was tested periodically. It jumped to 69 and then after a year dipped to 49 but went back to 69 and last year was at 82. I have been supplementing with Vitamin D3 for probably 5 years.
    Has anyone tried coconut oil for sun protection?

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    1. My wife was having lots of problems a couple years ago, bone pain was one. I suggested she get her Vit D level tested. She did. Heard nothing back, assumed it was good. A year later, we were looking at her labs and saw her Vit D level was 8. She called doc, asked what the hell? He put her on 25,000IU of Vit D2 per day for 14 days or something, retested...50. No mention of supplementing, or anything. She started taking 5000IU of D3 after that, it's been several years. Her D levels stay around 50 and she gets very little sun, even in summer, because she is quite afraid of the sunshine after a couple bouts of skin cancer attributed "to the sun."

      I just worry that a blood level of 50, all from supplements and very little from sunshine, is just a "vanity level" as Dr. Art Ayers once called it. But, I can say that lots of people respond well when given supplemental D, so it can't be totally worthless.

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    2. @Navillus - why do you think you need protection from the sun? Look into where you are to find out how long to be exposed to get what you need, then wear a hat and/or a light long sleeved shirt. If you burn easily, look to your diet, and get your sun in smaller increments. Don't be afraid of the sun!! Most skin cancers appear in places that have never had exposure to sunlight.


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    3. I supplement with Carlson's Vit D drops, but it was two years ago when I was last tested. A few times each week, in fall/winter/spring, I take 4,000IU. On average, I take none to very little during the summer. I may supplement if if we've had a lot of rain and I've been stuck indoors. I'm in Washington state, about an hour north of Seattle.

      I've never tested below 35, though I could have been lower than that at other times, for all I know. Whenever a doctor has had be supplement in higher doses, I couldn't tell if I felt better or not, and I'm someone who's super aware of how I respond to . . . well, just about anything! I do know that when I was more consistent with taking CLO and Vit D, I started holding a tan longer.

      I like Dr. Art Ayers' "vanity level" view of Vit D levels. Hilarious! I still think we have a lot more to learn about it, and I must say that there's nothing quite like sunshine. There are too many studies and anecdotal reports of improved health with Vit D supplementation for me to throw it out of the window, but also I think people erroneously believe they've got things covered if they supplement and stay indoors. Every time I think about paying for a test to check my levels, I shrug my shoulders and say "meh" and go on with my day.

      Cheryl

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    4. @ navillus (re: coconut oil for sun protection)

      I've tried it a few times, but it didn't seem to make any difference. I used expeller pressed, but not virgin. In my previous post, I forgot to add that in addition to holding a tan longer, when supplementing with CLO and Vit D, I noticed I didn't burn as easily.

      Cheryl

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    5. Vitamin D supps do not replace the stimulation of the pineal gland by sunshine. That's probably the bottom line. There's more going on in the hypothalamus and down the line to the pituitary gland.

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    6. Thanks, Gab! Similar to Potato Starch and Inulin powder not being a replacement for real food!

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    7. @Tim,
      Do you think that there is something unique about the fermentable fiber in real food, or is it that real food just contains other nutrients and micronutrients other than it's fermentable fiber content ?
      Also isn't it important to remember that humans have so reduced the fiber (both fermentable and not) of modern vegetables and fruits, that if you tried to get enough fiber from real food to even begin to do justice to your microbiome, you'd explode?

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    8. Stu - Just my opinion, but I think nearly everybody would do well to include some fiber powders in their routine, daily. 2-4TBS worth. But I hate to think of people thinking that they can just forget about eating all the good high-fiber foods available. I've been having a blast getting outside my comfort zone with cool new foods.

      There are certainly things in real food we have not even begun to discover, and also the combination of fiber/non-fiber, fermentable/non, and other factors that just seem to me it's best to try to get lots of real plant matter daily and bridge any gap with some high-fiber supplement.

      Soon, I will write up my experience this past month going low carb, low fiber. Dry eyes, dry skin, unpleasant TMI experiences, food cravings, the whole 9 yards...3 more days of this and then it's back to "megadosing!"

      I like to think that a couple big servings of veggies, cooked/raw, starchy/not starchy, and some fruit plus nuts, chocolate, tea, cheese/dairy, and some seeds/berries most days is a good foundation, but as you said, probably only 10-15g fiber at most. So...2-4TBS of a powder of choice and viola. I played around in ranges now of 0-120g/day of fermentable fibers and I seem to think, for me, the 30-50g range is pretty good.

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    9. I do see your point about not having a clue yet about the inner complexities of real food. I suppose though that it is a temptation to take the appreciation of real foods almost infinite mysteries to think that it is even possible to get enough fiber from modern real food. Even heirloom varieties are a pale imitation of their difficult to chew, less tasty forbears. Eating baobab is like eating 'slightly sweet chalk' after all, and tiger nuts are a dental hazard.

      Delete
  4. From the D-Lightful link above:

    "Today, amphibians, reptiles, all avian species, and most mammals still depend on sunlight for their vitamin D requirement. Birds are not able to make any vitamin D in skin covered with feathers, and the 7-dehydrocholesterol concentrations are 10-fold higher in nonfeathered skin areas including the legs.(6) For reasons that are not understood, cats have no 7-dehyrocholesterol in their skin and therefore cannot make vitamin D3 in their skin and depend on their diet for their sole source of vitamin D3.(7) Skin pigmentation evolved to protect animals and humans from excessive exposure to sunlight, which without it, increased the risk of nonmelanoma skin cancer.(8) However, as hominids migrated north and south of the equator, it is likely that their skin pigment devolved for them to produce enough vitamin D3 to maintain calcium homeostasis and a healthy skeleton throughout life.

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    1. I think it was Holick who mentioned that fish don't need to produce vitamin D and it's when animals crept onto the land that vitamin D has become necessary. But, what about the fish that produce vitamin D? They do.

      It's calcium that is in short supply in the ocean. I was giving this a think after listening to his lecture. Fish bones are not load bearing. Fish bones concentrate fluoride from the ocean water. Fish bones are relatively soft and very numerous. Maybe this makes the difference when calcium availability is low and vitamin D is very low or non existent? Then there's sharks which are cartilaginous. (Rays too, etc.)

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  6. Recent research has cast doubt on the role of vitamin D in skin color and produced more evidence for other factors. For example:

    Sexual selection as a cause of human skin colour variation: Darwin's hypothesis revisited.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12573076

    New Diet, Sexual Attraction May Have Spurred Europeans' Lighter Skin
    http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2014/03/new-diet-sexual-attraction-may-have-spurred-europeans-lighter-skin

    Why Do Europeans Have So Many Hair and Eye Colors?
    Peter Frost
    http://cogweb.ucla.edu/ep/Frost_06.html

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    1. How interesting! Attraction theory makes sense. Didn;t they used to lock girls away in caves to lighten their skin? Light skin meant "non-farmhand" and therefore, wealthy.

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    2. Phil, that's the thing though, doesn't matter where, lighter skinned brides are prefered. India, China, Japan, Korea... and I highly highly doubt this has anything to do with European colonialism. This just seems to be some sort of 'universal'.

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    3. In one article it suggested that when you have a society that is depended on the male to provide food then it pays for a female to stand out among other females to attract a mate (and vise versa?). It's not necessarily skin colour , it could be eyes or hair colour. However, perhaps it is easiest and cheapest to lighten the skin by staying out of the sun.

      This theory of mate selection due to food availability also suggest to me the nature of mate guarding and control of female sexuality. And perhaps why female might go along with such restrictions on their sexuality. Sexuality may not have been a moral thing but more of a survival issue.

      Nicole

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  7. @Paleo Phil,
    But light skin gets sunburnt more easily, increasing melanoma risk, and also produces more D for the same duration/intensity of sun exposure. So given that in milder climates, lighter skin was a definite survival advantage wasn't it?
    Also (and I admit I haven't read the study) are they suggesting that lighter skin is sexier? Don't tell that to Loreal LOL. I've always found Japanese women's constant attempts to look pale as a real turn off.

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  8. It is unfair for fair-skinned folks to be living where the sun burns bright. I have noticed, though, that embracing the sun instead of hiding from it is easy. My eyes used to hurt in the sun and I burned easily, since adding in Vit D, K, fiber and regularly suntanning in summer, it's no problem.

    I read somewhere just about every day, mainstream advice to wear sunscreen at all times. I think there is a place for it, but not all the time.

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    1. @wildcucmber
      By no means am I afraid of the sun. I grew up in the tropics and love the warmth of the sun! Now that it is getting warmer, I sit outside to eat my lunch.

      I play a lot of golf (spring through fall) and am out in the sun 4+ hours. I do wear a large floppy hat but cannot wear long sleeves, especially in the summer. I will use an umbrella but when it's windy it makes it impossible. So I would like to use some sunscreen but just without the chemicals.

      Delete
    2. @navillus

      My choice is calendula (marigold) oil (in sesame oil, for instance).

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    3. Thanks Gemma! I will give that a try and report back.

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    4. @ navillus - my mistake, apologies. I like St John'swort oil.

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    5. @wildcucumber - no apologies necessary ;) I will also look into St John's Wort oil. Thanks!

      I will be smelling very medicinal out on the golf course! :)

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  9. @Stuart Mather:

    I recommend checking out the sources I cited, where it is explained. Here are some excerpts:

    > "Most humans have only one hair color and one eye color. Europeans are a big exception: their hair is black but also brown, flaxen, golden, or red; their eyes are brown but also blue, gray, hazel, or green. ... Why this color diversity? And why only in Europe? Some believe it to be a side effect of natural selection for fairer skin to ensure enough vitamin D at northern latitudes. Yet skin color is weakly influenced by the different alleles for hair color or eye color apart from the ones for red hair or blue eyes. Some have no effect at all on skin pigmentation."
    http://cogweb.ucla.edu/ep/Frost_06.html (Peter Frost covers the sexual selection factor more extensively at his blog: http://www.evoandproud.blogspot.com)

    > "humans apparently did not begin to lighten up immediately after they migrated from Africa to Europe beginning about 40,000 years ago"
    > "why was strong natural selection for lighter skin, hair, and eye color still going on thousands of years after humans left Africa and its brutal UV rays?"
    http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2014/03/new-diet-sexual-attraction-may-have-spurred-europeans-lighter-skin

    Here is another source:
    "Is there, in fact, any hard evidence that humans vary in skin color because they need to maintain the same level of vitamin D production in the face of varying levels of UV-B? Robins (1991, pp. 204-205) found the data to be unconvincing when he reviewed the literature. In particular, there seems to be little relationship between skin color and blood levels of 25-OHD—one of the main circulating metabolites of vitamin D. ... Solar UV seems to be a weak agent of natural selection, be it through sunburn, skin cancer, or vitamin D deficiency." http://www.unz.com/pfrost/skin-color-and-vitamin-d/


    @Tim:

    I haven't heard about the skin-lightening-caves, but I have heard of skin-lightening-tents for Amazon Indian brides.

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    Replies
    1. @Paleon Phil
      It has always struck me as interesting how most Asian cultures place a huge fashion premium on having pale skin, probably for the same socio - cultural reasons as the lightening caves. Asian women seem to put as much effort into making their naturally olive complexion look paler - makeup, always covering their arms against the sun, as western women put into making in darker Japanese female aquaintances without exception are desperate to look pale In fact whenever one is staying with me I'm struck by how different they look without makeup.
      Is it true that darker pigmented skin produces less Vit D for the same amount of exposure to sunlight than lighter ? I guess there would be a very pronounced selective pressure for darker pigmentation if the population movement had been in the other direction though - with light skinned people migrating to sunnier climates.

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    2. @Stuart Mather:
      There is some vitamin D difference with skin colors, but the research has not supported vitamin D or latitude as the primary reason in the development of lighter skin (or hair and eye) colors in Europeans vs. the darker skin their ancestors had when they left Africa. It was an assumption that didn't pan out when it was actually checked. As with any paradigm change, it will take a while for this to filter out and become widely recognized.

      Delete
  10. Since I started taking vit D supplements 7 years ago and my levels remain up I don't burn anymore even in Australia (visiting family). Also, I don't go back to milky white in the winter, a slight tan seems to remain. Believe me, I used to burn very quickly, which I now consider to be a sign of vit D deficiency. Last year I went to Jordan for a holiday, and the sun was extremely hot, an ideal place to burn quickly, but nope nothing happened. I don't need to use any sunscreen.

    What started me off on my vita D journey was coming across the following forum post. It ran for 250 pages and then the moderators changed it to a new post. I realise that the information will be very dated by now, but most of it is still valid today.

    http://forum.lowcarber.org/showthread.php?t=266549

    Jo tB

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  11. You all might like to read a report called "Sunlight Robbery"
    On the same site is a report called "Sunbathing is needed for optimal health in the UK."
    It gives a calculation of your daily vit D needs.

    www.healthresearchforum.org.uk

    Jo tB

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  12. I'm in Chicagoland. I use a light box from the end of September until it's warm enough to spend significant time outside. Until ~March.

    To update, I had been on low dose pulsing antibiotics since 2008 for arthritis. I added pulsing azithromycin last September in hopes of knocking back some low level joint pain in my wrists, hands, and knees.

    The azithromycin created a sharp decrease in my appetite, and it felt like something really shifted for the worse. Although my joint pain improved, my mood tanked. I was so depressed.

    I dropped the azithromycin and the doxycycline in December. I started some fermentable fibers, but I haven't stuck with it due to GI discomfort, primarily a full bloated feeling and needing to poop at inconvenient times.

    I really wish there was a magic pill to lift my low mood. I feel like I've tried SO MANY THINGS. It seems like a problem in the gut is an obvious candidate as a problem area to fix.

    Frustrating!

    Michelle

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  13. @Michelle
    Sorry to hear about your troubles. Might be worth trying the Orafti HP. What have you got to lose? Tim's observed so many times that the people who have the most trouble with fermentable fibers are the ones who need them the most. Awful Catch 22. Somehow you are just going to have to push through the discomfort. And Orafti HP might help. Keep us posted

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  14. Michelle, are you taking any vit D? It definitely helped me with the winter blues.

    I know your frustration regarding your gut. I have the same problems which is why I decided to stop beating about the bush and consult an Orthomolecular therapist/dietician. She ordered a full mapping of my gut flora. I hope to get the results within 2 weeks and will start dealing with the problem then.

    I keep going round in circles, is it my gut, is it my thyroid, is it my diabetes. Well my therapist said all three were inter-related.

    Jo tB

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  15. Gabriella Kadar wrote March 27, 2015 at 4:10 AM:
    "Phil, that's the thing though, doesn't matter where, lighter skinned brides are prefered. India, China, Japan, Korea... and I highly highly doubt this has anything to do with European colonialism. This just seems to be some sort of 'universal'."

    That's right, Gabriella, it's nearly universal (I've only seen one African tribe reported as an exception) and not due to European Colonialism or racism. One factor that few are aware of is that the females of every tribe/people examined were found to be slightly lighter-skinned, on average, than their male counterparts and that comparatively darker skin signals masculinity and comparatively lighter skin signals femininity. This also fits with American social conventions of the "tall, dark and handsome" man and the "fair" (pretty) woman.

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    1. But, did you know that in countries, like Germany for example, where both brown eyes and blue eyes are present in the population, the frequency of blue eyes is higher among males? So hair colour and skin tone and eye colour appear not be linked. Geeze, maybe with my discombobulated vision for the past couple of days, it might even have been you posting.

      I used to think that maybe with the lighter skin, the women were getting more vitamin D when the going was good. Had better immune function? More fertility? Don't know.

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    2. Michelle, you sound like a friend of mine who had bloating and whatnot, took too many antibiotics. She was visiting her relatives in Italy when her nephew, a GI specialist dropped by. Told her to eat natural goat yoghurt. She was all 'oh no, I'll get diarrhoea,'..etc. 'No you won't.' He took the little container out of the fridge and told her to eat. (Bossy nephew).... So she ate a spoonful. "NO. The whole thing." Dutifully with much skepticism she did. He phoned her in the morning to see how she was doing. 'Great'. Now she eats two big tablespoons of goat yoghurt every morning first thing and her bloating and pain and whatnot has cleared up and stayed away. She considers herself to be lactose intolerant. So never know, some simple kitchen medicine may help.

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    3. I ordered some of the Orafati HP, thank you Stu.

      I take D3 durung the light box months. I think my last test was 39? 41?

      Gabriella, the bloating and discomfort is in response to the supplemental fermentable fiber (Inulin, FOS, PS). I have stopped it for now.

      I eat homemade yogurt (cows milk) daily. Kombucha 2-3x a week. Simple boring diet.

      Concerns include low appetite. When taking fiber powders, I felt so full, which lowered appetite even further.

      I'm currently fighting off sinus headaches and one ear is giving me trouble. Sore, pinching, and sometimes I feel nauseous.

      I'd like to start again with the fiber powders, but also hesitant to do so.

      Michelle

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    4. Hi Michelle - some advice...pick your powder, and have a "not carefully measured" spoonful every night with dinner (or with lunch). If that settles well, after a month or so, add a spoonful to the other meal daily.

      Takes time to get a gut that is accepting of fiber.

      Sorry to hear about the sinus troubles.

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    5. Thanks Tim. I'll give it a try.

      TMI warning:

      Before starting fiber powders, I would have a BM after breakfast. #4-5 Bristol Stool Chart fans. And that's it.

      It was a very comfortable routine for my exercise routine and time at work.

      When introducing fiber powders, I began to have multiple BMs a day, or having a bloated feeling and wanting to have a BM to alleviate that feeling.

      More than the gas, this was feeling like a deal breaker. I mean, I don't want to have to poop at work bc my job is very active, and exercise often uncomfortable.

      I'm back to my once in the morning routine and that feels so much more comfortable.

      Michelle

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  16. Garbriella wrote: "But, did you know that in countries, like Germany for example, where both brown eyes and blue eyes are present in the population, the frequency of blue eyes is higher among males? So hair colour and skin tone and eye colour appear not be linked."

    Yes, Frost and Unz don't argue that skin color and eye color are directly linked genetically. Quite the opposite--they argue that the fact that they aren't supports sexual selection being a bigger factor than other hypothesized factors. (http://www.unz.com/pfrost/is-eye-color-sex-linked)

    Frost explained the lower rate of blue eyes among females in northern and eastern European countries like Germany here:

    "When both copies of the so-called blue-eye allele are present, the resulting phenotype is more variable in women than in men (Martinez-Cadenas et al., 2013). This translates into a greater range of female eye colors in regions, like northern and eastern Europe, where blue eyes are the single most common phenotype (Walsh et al.,2012). As the study’s authors observe, “in populations with very high blue-eye frequency, such as Iceland or Holland, females show greater proportion of green eyes at the expense of blue eyes” (Martinez-Cadenas et al., 2013)."

    So it all still fits with sexual selection.

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    1. Ah but Phil, did it ever occur that maybe it's the female that selects? I'm not going to go into much detail here but put it this way, blue eyed men are what I find attractive. I actually wasn't even aware of this until I read something about how almost all of the US presidents have been blue eyed (or at least not brown eyed). This was mentioned prior to the election when Obama won. Sure enough, it's true. Then I looked at Canadian politicians and sure enough, it's true here as well. What's the deal with this? Don't you think it's weird?

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  17. I'm going to try the goat milk yoghurt with added fiber to it. Potato starch never worked for me in the past, so I took it last night and this morning had a BM straight away. So far, so good. Goat milk is not readily available in Holland, so had to hunt around for it, but it turns out my favourite supermarket carries both the milk and the yoghurt!!!

    Jo tB

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    1. Vroom and Dreesman or the Albert Heijn? I really miss those stores! Piles of witloof and boerekool. Nasi and Bamiballen. Stroopwaffels! I also learned the difference, quickly, between a 'stuiver' and a 'stijver' when counting change one day, lol.

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  18. Sunshine, honey...all good stuff - but as for me? I'll rely on wine, garlic, onions and cow bile: amazing story:

    http://edition.cnn.com/2015/03/31/health/anglo-saxon-potion-mrsa/index.html?eref=edition

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    1. I saw that earlier today. Pretty neat!

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  19. Finally! An RS prebiotic on the open market, from Orafti, no less.
    $26.95 a pound!

    http://www.naturalstacks.com/products/prebiotic-resistant-starch

    DIRECTIONS: Mix with 4­-6 oz of cold water or blend into your favorite smoothie. Start by taking ½ scoop per day for 1 week then increase to 1­-2 scoops per day, preferably in the evening.

    U.S.A manufactured in a cGMP facility. Natural Stacks proudly uses only the highest quality ingredients
    Unmodified Raw Potato Starch

    With the highest concentration of resistant starch out of any other food­based source, unmodified potato starch has been proven to provide numerous health benefits. The potato starch in PREBIOTIC+ is made from premium­grade high­starch European potatoes by an all­natural water and filtration process.
    Green Banana Flour

    Milled in the United States, our banana flour is made from the pulp of unripe bananas before the sugar content has developed. Raw green banana flour is extremely nutrient dense; it’s high in potassium, vitamins, minerals, and resistant starch.
    Inulin­FOS (FructoOligoSaccharide)

    Naturally found in many different vegetables, Inulin­FOS consists of short and long chains of fructose molecules that stimulate the growth of beneficial flora in the gastrointestinal tract, supporting digestive health and reducing blood glucose response. PREBIOTIC+ features Orafti ®Synergy1 Inulin­FOS which is made from GMO­free chicory grown in Europe.
    Trehalose

    Sometimes referred to as “mushroom sugar”, trehalose is a naturally occurring sugar found in mushrooms, seeds, algae, and some drought­enduring desert plants. Unlike sucrose (table sugar), trehalose is only about half as sweet, has a much lower glycemic index, and a slow digestion process. It’s added to PREBIOTIC+ because of its strong neuroprotective and antidepressant­like properties.
    Ceylon Cinnamon

    Also known as “true cinnamon”, ceylon cinnamon can help regulate blood sugar, reduce insulin resistance, and relieve joint pain. It’s also a rich source of antioxidants; just 1 tsp. of ceylon cinnamon has more antioxidants than 8 oz. of pomegranate juice. Different than the commercial grade “cassia” cinnamon available at supermarkets, ceylon cinnamon has lighter, more delicate citrus tones and has been shown to have greater health benefits.

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    1. From Orafti? I only see that it uses Orafti Synergy1' as does a Jarrow formula. Don't dis Orafti, man, they make my HP stuff...

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    2. No dissing! I just saw the word "Orafti" on the label.

      Maybe the comment came out wrong, but I think this is a great addition to the supplement aisle. It's way too expensive, we know how to do it better, but I'm glad that RS is now on the shelves, and from potato starch no less. It is a really good blend, I've used nearly the same (minus cinnamon and trehalose) myself.

      Banana flour does not mix well in water, though.

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  20. Hi Tim, not V&D (that is a department store). Albert Heijn does carry it, but more expensive than the other supermarkets. No the one I'm referring to is Deen (a new kid on the block). A stuiver is old currency. So that's dating you!! And me as well. We still fondly refer to a riks (rijksdaalder 2.5 Guilders). With the new Euros we don't have that anymore.

    Jo tB

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  21. NZT.2 the Limitless Pill developed by Paneuromix. The search for NZT-48. Here you can buy NZT.
    NZT.1 ist ein hochentwickeltes Nahrungsergänzungsmittel mit einer ausgewogenen Kombination von Nootropika, die auch „kluge Nährstoffe" oder "Gehirn-Ergänzungsmittel" genannt werden, NZT.2

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