Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for June 30, 2007

Today I venture out to Newmarket to a great health food store to see if I can find molybdenum. After looking around the entire store without much luck, I ask for help. I don’t know how to pronounce it so I hand her a piece of paper with it written down. She come back minutes later with molybdenum. I was so impressed! I love this store. The dosage is 150 mcr so it’s a little higher than the recommended dosage but not by much. I’ll give it a try.

Molybdenum is a trace mineral not yet well known to the public. Its presence in the system in sufficient concentrations can make a dramatic difference in the health of individuals coping with candida infection, multiple chemical sensitivities or certain types of food or chemically induced migraine headache, as well as the adverse effects of alcohol over consumption.

Molybdenum is required by the body to manufacture several important enzymes, (aldehyde-dehydrogenase and aldehyde-oxidase) which allow the liver to neutralize a powerful and otherwise relatively inert neurotoxin, acetaldehyde as well as the enzymes required to break down sulfite and xanthine. Acetaldehyde is a toxin produced as a metabolic waste material of yeast and fungal organisms that accumulates in unhealthy intestinal environments, circulating blood, liver and other tissues and organs of individuals with candida albicans overgrowth.

The number of people suffering with multiple chemical sensitivities is growing yearly. These individual’s inability to cope in a chemically contaminated environment can be nightmarish. The class of aromatic petroleum derived chemicals which these persons are especially sensitive to are the aldehydes. The chief toxic metabolite of alcohol is also and aldehyde (acetaldehyde). When the liver’s ability to effectively cope with this poison is restored, the cumulative damage which has resulted from its presence in our tissues can begin to be healed.

“Within days of taking 100 mcg of molybdenum three times a day, I could feel the poisons from candida garbage transforming themselves into heat and energy.”

That’s what I’m hoping for so let’s see what happens…

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June 30, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 29, 2007

One man’s experience on fighting candida with Molybdenum. It’s such an interesting and unusual story, I might try it for myself…if I can find it. I’m familiar with the mineral but I can honestly say I don’t think I’ve ever seen it in a health food store.

Molybdenum

At least a decade’s worth of personal experimentation had led me to find answers to my own poor health involving chronic fatigue, extreme muscular weakness, generalized pain, insomnia, and other disgusting things. The causes had been variously diagnosed as mononucleosis or Epstein-Barr virus, poor health caused by lack of exercise, lupus, psychosomatic illness, depression, slow pertussis infection, post polio syndrome, faulty brain chemistry, and Candida albicans infection.

The chief player in resolving my problems was an essential trace mineral, molybdenum. With molybdenum, it was possible to transform poisons into energy.

In trying to “kill” a massive Candida colonialization in my GI track, my mouth, and toenails, I made discoveries. The antibiotic Nystatin had made all of my symptoms worse. First, it must have been responsible for attacking and killing vast numbers of the fungal yeast, candida; and as Orian Truss, The Missing Diagnosis, and William Crook, The Yeast Connection, had said, large doses of antibiotics can make an “unpleasant condition” worse. Their hypothesis was that the yeast “byproducts” from the kill-off were responsible for chronic pain becoming acute pain.

Neither Truss nor Crook were aware of how the garbage from yeast actually affected the body or the brain. They only knew that sites remote from the infection were affected: the brain, the central nervous system, the joints, the muscles.

In experiencing the effects of the “kill-off,” I began to have definite feelings that killing the yeast was wrong. That is how we as a culture respond to anything we don’t understand. Ethically speaking, we consider strangers enemies. We go to war with anything that is different. War itself on a political level causes untold human suffering, and the aftermath may be the worst of all. The emotional and economic garbage of war persists for centuries. The debts of the American Civil War are still unpaid. If we learn to cooperate with the strangers on our borders, we would have a different world. If we learned how to treat microbes strange to the human body as guests of the body, we might just discover health.

Molybdenum is one way of cleaning up the garbage of our antibiotic wars. Candida albicans is a normal inhabitant of our gastrointestinal tract. It is supposed to be there. And if Dr. Bruce McFarland is correct, it causes no problem when it is fed well and treated well. When does it cause a problem?

Half of the problem is created by modern medical wonder drugs: the birth control pill which alters the hormone system and subsequently the immune system, antibiotics, steroids, and other chemotherapies which are synthetic ways of altering the function of the body’s systems, wiping out the ecosystem in the stomach and gut, and setting up a scenario for trouble. As friendly E. coli, E. faecium, L. acidophilus bacteria are killed by the use of prescription drugs right along with the alien microbes, candida fungal yeasts begin to flourish and dominate, growing to such numbers that they may outnumber every cell in the human body.

Two basic events take place. Our friendly bacteria no longer aid digestion by converting food into enzymes, amino acids, vitamins, and minerals that the body can use; so killing sets us up for subclinical and clinical malnutrition syndromes.

The other half of the problem is industrialized, overly processed, heat processed or chemically processed foods. Candida and herpes zoster, for two, are junk food junkies thriving on sugar, processed vegetable oils, and hydrogenated fats. None of these refined foods are found in nature. So how does the body respond to hydrogenated fats? One result is that candida digests a part of them into pseudo bile. Pseudo bile tells your appetite center that the fat is taken care of, and you need more. So you develop cravings for more junk as undigested fat collects in the body. Undigested fat collects in the arteries too, and you get artery and heart problems. Another problem of incomplete digestion results in food substances going into the blood that shouldn’t be there. Methionine becomes homocysteine rather than glutamine and taurine. We are not allergic to foods; we are allergic to incompletely digested foods.

Candida also converts sugars into ethanol. As a common ingredient in prescription and over-the-counter medications, it is not bad in itself. It functions as a free radical scavenger and antiseptic. It provides a janitorial function for the body. But too much unused alcohol converts into acetaldehyde. If you have adequate amounts of glutamine, selenium, niacin, folic acid, B6, B12, iron, and molybdenum, aldehydes continue to be metabolized into acetic acid, which can be excreted, or converted further into acetyl coenzyme A. If these nutrients are in poor supply, aldehydes begin collecting in the body’s tissues.

So when candida is fully nourished or we are, candida furnishes the body with a necessary part of the Krebs energy cycle necessary for the health and maintenance of all cells. When our digestion is unbalanced, we incompletely convert sugars into poisons and they stay poisons in our human systems. When our digestion is balanced, or we give it what it needs in terms of supplements, a potential poison is transformed into a source of energy: aldehyde poison becomes acetyl coenzyme A.

Why should we love our enemies? Because our enemies are ourselves. The enemy candida, and it is an enemy in Drs. Truss’s and Crook’s eyes, and in the eyes of most of the medical profession, is our friend or becomes our friend when we treat it right. If we attack it with antibiotics, the rest of our friendly microbes will be unable to feed it the B vitamins, amino acids, and minerals it needs to metabolize its poisons into nourishment for our bodies. When we attack our microbes, we kill ourselves.

Within days of taking 100 mcg of molybdenum three times a day, I could feel the poisons from candida garbage transforming themselves into heat and energy. Where I had experienced pain in my neck and shoulders, I felt warmth. A stiff back that felt like a wall of steel was transformed into copious sweat. My muscles relaxed and were pain free. At the same time, the person I was who found it difficult to get out of bed, became someone who needed 4 to 8 hours of sleep rather than 10 or 12. Where I had been confined within a prison of fatigue, the fatigue was translated into an open expanse of energy and possibility. An intellectual fog that had filled my head for years scattered itself the first day I took molybdenum. I had lived with an intellectual hangover for so long, I had no idea what it was like to experience full mental clarity.

In reading histories of placebo treatments, it became obvious to me that “scientific” studies attempted to avoid the placebo effect that, on average, reported a 30.6% rate of effectiveness, slightly greater effectiveness than with the “real thing” prescription medication it would be paired against. Typical of some studies was the bemoaning of the fact that placebo effects were not maximized. That is, health professionals who had the best interests of the patients in mind wanted to use positive suggestion in addition to the medication. However, few if any of such professionals, had the courage to do it. Why? It was unscientific. Wouldn’t it be terrible if people got better because of attitude change?

In other readings, it became apparent that lactose, sugar, or olive oil were commonly used as placebos. In view of my modest knowledge of biochemistry, this seemed outrageous to me. Lactose, sugar, and olive oil are all bioactive substances. Lactose, for one, is so little regarded as a nutrient, that it is the most common binder in prescription medicatio
n. Yet the Food Pharmacy made clear that plain old sugar acts as nature’s tranquilizer.

Dr. Richard Murray has pointed out that lactose contains the two essential building blocks, glucose and galactose, of the central nervous system and brain. The body converts adequate supplies of glucose into N-acetyl glucosamine, essential for all tissue building and repair. Olive oil is known to favorably affect good cholesterol, and good cholesterol is the nutrient precursor for our hormones and essential for the digestion of fats. It seemed no wonder to me that placebo effects could be accounted for not on the basis of expectation alone, but on a biochemical level.

To me, this meant that most double or single blind experiments were triple blind. Nutrients like vitamin B12 and folic acid are so little regarded that they have been used as placebos in the treatment of multiple sclerosis.

The greatest irony of all was not that placebos may have worked better than the prescription medication, but that the prescription medication may have done some of its good because of the binder hiding inside of it. All of this led me away from the mechanistic attitudes that were behind “scientific credibility.”

June 30, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 29, 2007

Molybdenum & Zinc for fighting yeast!

Candida Albicans is a common fungus and a normal inhabitant of the human intestine. Under certain conditions, it overgrows and releases toxic substances including alcohol and acetaldehyde. The actual name for the condition is chronic muco-cutaneous yeast infection. It is common in all age groups, thanks to the overuse of antibiotics, use of birth control pills and steroid drugs, diets high in sugar or carbohydrates, weak immune systems, copper imbalance, weak adrenals and improper bowel flora.

Symptoms range from fatigue and depression to headaches, bloating, gas, skin problems, tightness in the shoulders, itching and joint pain. The condition can be life-threatening in immune-compromised individuals.

Some practitioners blame everything on yeast problems, which is not the case in my experience. However, in listening to and working with several thousand patients, it becomes clear that chronic yeast overgrowth is more common than we suspect. It is present even among people who are not the usual candidates.

Several books including The Yeast Syndrome and The Yeast Connection discuss dietary and medical means to identify and control chronic yeast infection. They contain excellent information, but often focus more on symptoms than on causes. Many people try the diet and medication for candidiasis and feel somewhat better, but never fully recover. If they stop the program, the symptoms return. Fortunately, new insights from trace mineral research can help identify and correct deeper causes.

Molybdenum

Molybdenum is an essential trace mineral for human and animal nutrition. Molybdenum (symbol Mo) is a transition metal that is found in the earth’s soil. The amount of molybdenum in plant foods vary significantly and is dependent upon the mineral content of the soil. The best sources of this mineral are beans, dark green leafy vegetables, and grains. Molybdenum is also found in several tissues of the human body and is involved in several enzyme systems.

In humans, the active biological form of molybdenum is known as the Molybdenum cofactor “Moco”. Moco is a cofactor in four human enzymes: xanthine dehydrogenase, xanthine oxidase, sulfite oxidase, and aldehyde oxidase. Due to its role in these enzyme systems, Molybdenum is essential and has been implicated in several health issues.

Molybdenum deficient diets fed to animals has resulted in slowed weight gain, decreased food consumption, impaired reproduction, and a shortened life expectancy.

Sulfites, which are used as a food additive, are a common substance to which individuals can become sensitized and develop allergies. Sulfite is also toxic to the nervous system. Since Molybdenum is necessary for sulfite oxidase, an enzyme which helps the body deal with these substances. It has been suggested that molybdenum may help promote healthy airways.*

In addition, yeasts in the body produce a by-product called acetaldehyde, a toxic substance resulting in several health consequences. In fact, acetaldehyde is the compound that produces the symptoms in an alcohol “hang-over.” Molybdenum plays a role as a cofactor in helping break down acetaldehyde to a form that actually provides the body with energy.* Molybdenum plays a large role in the detoxification pathway for acetaldehyde in the human body.

Molybdenum has also been implicated in helping to promote healthy and normal cellular replication.* Due to molybdenum’s role in aldehyde oxidase, it may play a role in the detoxification of some carcinogenic xenobiotics.* A xenobiotic is a totally synthetic product not naturally occurring in nature (i.e. a man-made chemical). Molybdenum is also involved in cofactors that are required for enzyme activity by some of the good bacteria of the large intestine. Some of these molybdenum dependent enzymes may, again, be involved in detoxifying carcinogenic xenobiotics.

Molybdenum also plays a role in purine metabolism. It is needed to convert purine to uric acid. As such, excessive intake of Molybdenum could, in rare cases, increase uric acid levels and potentially trigger gout.

Molybdenum is an antagonist to copper. Therefore, it has also been helpful in those struggling with excessive copper in the body. Molybdenum also has a relationship to iron, playing a role in enzyme dependent processes involving this mineral.

Zinc

Zinc has been demonstrated to normalize the body’s response to swelling, heat, and tenderness associated with joints. It is also involved in the proper functioning of multiple enzymes in the body required to maintain normal health. Further, zinc is required for the production of nucleic acids RNA and DNA, the basic building blocks of the body.

Zinc plays a role in the metabolism of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. It is also involved in the process of gluconeogenesis, the formation of glucose from noncarbohydrates, such as protein and fat.

Zinc is involved in many chemical reactions in the brain. It is essential in the development and continuous normal functioning of the central nervous system. There are many metalloenzymes and binding proteins in the body that require zinc for normal functioning.

June 30, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 29, 2007

Spent the last couple of days doing research on minerals and candida. I came across an interesting article that suggested taking Molybdenum.

The Candida/Aldehyde detox pathway and the Molybdenum Connection
written by Janice Weiss

As it relates to Candida, those of you who have read the work of Dr. Orion Truss, or who have seen quotes by others from his work, will already have been alerted to his assertion that much of the harm done by Candida results from its waste product, acetaldehyde, which in turn can affect the metabolic, neurological, endocrine, and immune systems. Further, that few chemicals can create so much havoc in the body as acetaldehyde can. It may interfere with the receptors for acetylcholine which is supposedly the major neurotransmitter in the corpus callosum.

Formaldehyde, obviously then, is related to acetaldehyde in the aldehyde chain of chemicals.

Dr. Stephen Rochlitz worked with cross-crawl brain integration exercises with dyslexic patients with formaldehyde taped to these patients right brain hemisphere, and sometimes the left.

Acetaldehyde is a fungal waste product.

Dr. Stephen Cooter, in his book “Beating Chronic Disease”, states that “Candida is responsible for flooding the system with an accumulation of toxic acetaldehydes. Acetaldehydes are known to poison tissues — accumulating in the brain, spinal cord, joints, muscles and tissues.”

Dr. Cooter then goes on to describe how he learned from a chiropractor, Dr. Carol Cooper that molybdenum — a mineral — not a medication, but a nutrient, had a blanket reputation for breaking down yeast by-products into forms that the body could excrete. Coincidentally, Dr. Cooter read the monogram by Dr. Walter Schmitt “Molybdenum for Candida Albicans Patients and Other Problems” through Dr. Cooper.

“Molybdenum is chemically responsible for breaking down acetaldehyde into acetic acid. Acetaldehyde cannot be excreted from the body; it accumulates. Acetic acid can be, though, and the body naturally removes it or changes it into acetyl coenzyme A, a major player in the body’s energy system…. Acetaldhyde accumulations in tissue are responsible for weakness in muscles, irritation, and PAIN.”

Directly quoted from Dr. Walter Schmitt:

“Chemical aldehydess are best known as fragrances…. Ethanol, or drinking alcohol, is also precessed to acetaldehyde. …the body has an enzyme which breaks down the aldehydes to less toxic substances. This enzyme is aldehyde oxidase, or sometimes, aldehyde dehydrogenase. Aldehydes encountered dietarily or environmentally or produced in the body must be handled by aldehyde oxidase metabolic pathways.

Acetaldehyde is a paraticularly toxic substance which, in addition to being produced by threonine and ethanol, is a product of the metabolism (i.e. fermentation) of carbohydrate in yeast — hence the Candida connection. Acetaldehyde is thought to be the major source of tissue damage in alcoholics rather than ethanol itself. The conversion of acetaldehyde into acetic acid” for this reaction to occur, threonine to acetaldehyde to acetic acid to acetyl coenzyme A, NAD (niacine amide) is required, and aldehyde oxidase is dependent of riboflavin, iron, and molybdenum. These forgoing nutrients could be helpful to Candida albicans patients, and others who are sensitive to various fragrances and airborne odors. Those patients with aldehyde sensitivity are incredibly sensitive to any type of fragrance.

June 30, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 25, 2007

I’ve raised my iron intake to 100 mg a day. The subtle changes have stopped but there is no doubt that I have a lot more energy. It’s a little tough taking my zinc and magnesium in between the dosage of iron but generally, I try to wait about 2 hours.

The vibration? The iron has definitely had an effect on it. I don’t feel it at night anymore. I only feel it sometimes in the morning but it’s not there most of the time. Now if I can just figure out the candida.

The iron has had an effect on the thrush but it hasn’t disappeared completely. I wonder if there are any other minerals that can effect candida?

June 30, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 20, 2007

Even through I’ve been told that my adrenals are stressed by different health professionals, nobody ever mentioned the biounavailability of copper.

Adrenal insufficiency: The Major Cause of Copper Toxicity

Although there are numerous reasons for the prevalence of copper toxicity, the most important cause is adrenal gland insufficiency. Individuals with adrenal insufficiency are unable to utilize copper properly. The reason for this is that copper can only be utilized in the body if it is attached to a protein substance for transport and storage.

The major protein that copper is attached to is called ceruloplasmin. Ceruloplasmin is a protein which binds copper so that it can be utilized in biochemical reactions.

When the adrenal glands are underactive, they are unable to send out a message to the liver to release ceruloplasmin from the liver and, therefore, copper becomes biounavailable.

As a result of excessive tissue storage of biounavailable or unbound copper, a deficiency of available copper occurs, even when dietary intake of copper is more than adequate. The result may be a craving for foods high in copper, such as chocolate, avocados, etc. The other result is multiple bodily dysfunctions as a direct or indirect result of copper imbalance.

Copper. As a rule of thumb, when the sodium/potassium ratio is less than about 2:1, copper becomes biounavailable. This occurs because adequate adrenal activity is needed for the production of ceruloplasmin, a copper binding protein. In these cases, it is wise to supplement with a small amount of copper for a while, even if the tissue copper level is high. This helps restore glandular activity, which requires bioavailable copper. Dr. Eck likened this to priming an old-fashioned water pump. You had to put in a little water in order for it to start pumping out water.

June 29, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 19, 2007

I’ve taken three doses of 25 mg iron yesterday and again today without any magnesium. I am feeling a little better these days and I definitely have a lot more energy. Did some googling tonight and I came across this for treatment.

Treatment of Iron Deficiency

There is no better treatment than ferrous sulfate, 325 mg three times daily, which provides 180 mg of iron daily of which 10mg is usually absorbed. Patients who cannot tolerate iron on an empty stomach should take it with food.

Treatment for iron deficiency anaemia includes adding iron-rich foods to the diet and taking iron supplements for up to 12 months. Don’t take iron supplements unless advised by your doctor.

Ferrous sulfate, 325 mg three times daily? That seems like a high dosage and I don’t have Anemia so it’s really hard to find a dosage for a basic deficiency.

The amount of iron absorbed decreases with increasing doses. For this reason, it is recommended that most people take their prescribed daily iron supplement in two or three equally spaced doses. For adults who are not pregnant, the CDC recommends taking 50 mg to 60 mg of oral elemental iron (the approximate amount of elemental iron in one 300 mg tablet of ferrous sulfate) twice daily for three months for the therapeutic treatment of iron deficiency anemia. However, physicians evaluate each person individually, and prescribe according to individual needs.

June 19, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 16, 2007

I’ve been at this now for over two years and in the last few months, I’ve discovered deficiencies in selenium, iron and zinc. And based on the changes that happened when I took them individually, I’d say they all three were a strong deficiency.

One person I’ll give credit to? The women in the Oshawa health food store suggested I had mineral deficiencies when I suspected B6 was my main problem. I was so convinced at the time I had a B6 deficiency because of the relationship with magnesium that I forgot about it and I wasn’t sure I believed her anyway.

So I have to question why did I find these deficiencies after taking a very powerful multivitamin for so long? I don’t believe that you can correct a mineral deficiency with a multivitamin because it just doesn’t make sense when you understand mineral ratios and how they interact with each other. A multivitamin can provide the body with the extra nutrients but it will not correct a deficiency. Here’s what I found:

Biochemical Individuality and Nutrition
by Bill Walsh, Ph.D.

Introduction

Each of us has innate biochemical factors which influence personality, behavior, mental health, immune function, allergic tendencies, etc. Scientists tell us that the number of different genetic combinations possible in a child from the same two parents exceeds 42 million. It’s interesting to note that we do not possess a combination of characteristics from our parents, but instead have a diverse collection of characteristics from many ancestors on both sides of the family.

Except for identical twins, each human being has unique biochemistry resulting in quite diverse nutritional needs. Shakespeare was correct when he wrote “One man’s meat is another man’s poison.” For example, some of us are genetically suited for a vegetable-based diet and others are not. Some persons can satisfy their nutritional needs by diet alone and others must have nutritional supplements to overcome genetic aberrations.

Because of genetic differences in the way our bodies process foods, most of us are quite deficient in certain nutrients and overloaded in others. Even with an ideal diet, most of us have certain nutrients that are at very low levels with many times the RDA required to achieve a healthy balance. The nutrients in overload must be carefully avoided in vitamin supplements or serious health problems can develop. After studying the biochemistry of 10,000 persons, I’ve learned that the greatest mischief is usually caused by nutrients that are stored in excessive amounts, rather than those at depleted levels. The most common nutrients in overload include copper, iron, folic acid, calcium, methionine, manganese, choline, and omega-6 fatty acids. Of course, these same nutrients may be in deficiency in other persons.

I am amused by supplement manufacturers who attempt to develop the ideal combination of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids for the general population. This is a bit like trying to determine the ideal shoe size for the population. The truth is that multiple vitamins and minerals are too indiscriminate, and may do as much harm as good.

Each of us should ask the question, “Who am I nutritionally?”

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 16, 2007

Another great article on zinc and some more things I didn’t know about. Apparently people with Type A blood, respond more slowly to treatment of a zinc deficiency than other types. They also suggest taking L-cysteine because it helps mobilize and excrete copper while enhancing zinc absorption.

ZINC DEFICIENCY, METAL METABOLISM, AND BEHAVIOR DISORDERS

by William J. Walsh

INTRODUCTION

Most Americans receive all the zinc they need if they have a reasonably well-balanced diet involving the major food groups. However, many persons are born with a metal-metabolism disorder which results in zinc depletion regardless of diet.

Zinc is a component of more than 80 enzymes. High concentrations have been found in brain hippocampus, and many medical researchers believe that zinc is a neurotransmitter. Low zinc levels at these sites could reduce the inhibition of neuron activity, thus leading to abnormal behavior. The discovery of zinc “finger proteins” in the past decade has led to a vastly improved understanding of how cells replicate and divide. There role in behavior is not yet clear, but could be involved in the transport or availability of zinc. Recent research has shown zinc to be far more important than previously believed and low levels of zinc are associated with behavior disorders.

Many of the patients of the Carl Pfeiffer Treatment Center suffer from behavior disorders. The most common ones are attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and conduct disorder (CD). These patients typically have a history of extensive counseling and multiple medications and many have experienced residential care. They represent a narrow and rather uncharacteristic segment of the general population.

A high percentage of behavior disordered persons exhibit abnormal levels of copper, zinc, lead, cadmium, calcium, magnesium and manganese in blood, urine, and tissues, based on chemical analysis results from thousands of patients. With regard to zinc, this condition appears to involve a malfunction of the metal-binding protein metallothionein. Most of these patients have symptoms of zinc deficiency along with depressed levels of zinc in their blood plasma.

The high incidence of zinc deficiency in assaultive young males was illustrated in a recent study1 which found elevated serum copper and depressed plasma zinc concentration, compared to normal controls. This study confirmed our clinical observations of zinc depletion in more than 4,000 behavior disordered patients.

Our clinical observations and research have indicated that the copper/zinc ratio appears to be more decisively important than either of the individual metals alone. Zinc deficiency often results in elevated blood levels of copper, due to the dynamic competition of these metals in the body. Elevated blood copper has been associated with episodic violence, hyperactivity, learning disabilities, and depression.

DIAGNOSIS OF ZINC DEFICIENCY

Zinc deficiency is difficult to diagnose since no single laboratory test or combination of tests is decisive in every case. For example, blood levels are sometimes normal in zinc deficient persons due to homeostasis. Urine and hair tissue levels are often elevated in zinc deficiency because of “short circuiting” of zinc through the body and high rates of excretion.

The two principal factors which lead our Center’s physicians to a diagnosis of zinc deficiency are: 1) depressed plasma zinc, and 2) presence of clinical symptoms of zinc depletion which are alleviated by zinc supplementation2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7. Since zinc tolerance tests show plasma levels to be affected for 6 hours following zinc supplementation8 and 9, zinc supplements are avoided for 24 hours prior to sampling of plasma.

A “working diagnosis” of zinc deficiency can be made if clinical symptoms of zinc deficiency are clearly evident from the initial physical examination and medical history. Usually more than one or the above symptoms are present in zinc deficiency. This initial diagnosis is later supported or negated by laboratory analysis for plasma zinc along with observed response (or non-response) to zinc supplementation.

The Carl Pfeiffer Treatment Center generally retests plasma zinc and evaluates symptoms after 4-6 months of treatment to determine if dosages need adjustment.

TREATMENT OF ZINC DEPLETION

Zinc depletion is corrected by supplementation with zinc (picolinate or gluconate) along with augmenting nutrients including L-cysteine, pyridoxine, ascorbic acid, and vitamin E. Manganese is also useful in promoting proper metallothionein function. If copper levels are elevated, effective treatment must also enhance the release of copper from tissues and copper excretion. L-cysteine helps mobilize and excrete copper while enhancing zinc absorption. Correction of zinc deficiency is best accomplished under the care of a physician or nutritionist who is experienced in metal metabolism disorders. Indiscriminant dosages of zinc to persons who do not need it can cause anemia and imbalanced trace metals.

Treatment of mild or moderate zinc depletion can take months to complete. Some cases of severe zinc depletion require a year or more to resolve. Achievement of a proper zinc balance is slowed by growth spurts, injury, illness, or severe stress. In addition, persons with malabsorption or Type A blood respond to treatment more slowly.

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 16, 2007

Zinc (Essential Knowledge in Nutrition)

Zinc is a co-factor for at least 70 critical enzyme pathways. Deficiency can therefore result in diverse, profound problems; impaired synthesis of DNA, RNA, and protein underlie the clinical manifestations. Zinc deficiency may be more common than is diagnosed.

The RDA for zinc is 5 mg/day for infants, 10 mg for children, and 15 mg for adults. Zinc requirements increase in pregnant women to 20 mg/day.

Growth defects like spina bifida have been linked to zinc deficiency. Any child with growth retardation, poor hair growth, impaired immunity or skin problems, should be considered for zinc deficiency, particularly if there are GIT absorption problems.

Zinc absorption is impaired by phytates in cereal grains, and by the concurrent ingestion of other minerals, especially calcium, iron, cadium and copper. The best body zinc evaluation is the measurement of zinc concentrations in white blood cells. Hair zinc levels may be increased when zinc is markedly deficient.

Zinc is depleted by the following drugs: Penicillamine, steroids, ethanol, diuretics, oral contraceptives. Zinc is often promoted to “enhance immunity”. It is an essential mineral for immune function. Perhaps because of its immune promoting role, deficiencies in zinc may be helpful in autoimmune diseases. Zinc concentrations are referred to copper, and the minerals tend to have a reciprocal relationship. A low tissue concentration of copper, may result from zinc supplements. A suggested optimal zinc to copper ratio is 7-8.

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | | Leave a comment

Entry for June 15, 2007

This is one amazing article on mineral ratios and I got some new facts that I didn’t know before. Apparently you should take vitamin B6 with zinc because they work far more effectively together. It also recommends that you take manganese if you are taking zinc so that the extra zinc does not overwhelm manganese causing deficiency.

Minerals
Boo Armstrong

Note: The information on this website is presented for educational purposes and
is not a substitute for the advice of and treatment by a qualified professional.

This document was provided by Continuum Magazine VOL. 4 No. 6

Immune suppression is caused by cumulative onslaughts and any diseases which result have deep-seated causes, so in order to protect yourself from disease it is essential that you address the real factors of your health. A main contributor to your underlying and deep-seated health is the levels of minerals which you have in your blood and those stored in different parts of your body.

All life, including our bodies, is made up of two fundamentally different groups of substances: organic and inorganic. Organic substances are produced by the chemical reactions of life. They are made, broken down and remade according to what we eat, breathe and soak in from our environment. They form the proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates and fats which are the basis of everything we need in order to live – muscles, nerves, skin and organs. These organic substances exist in a state of flux, participating in a series of chemical reactions out of which new substances are formed – some which we use and some which we remove as waste.

Inorganic substances are responsible for the reactions which cause this state of flux and constant rebuilding and removal of new and old cells. They cannot be created or broken down in our bodies so we only need a small amount of them and can use them again and again. These inorganic substances are minerals and they have been around far longer than any organic life forms.

We know that without them there would be no life at all because without them the reactions necessary to create life would never get around to happening. A cell that lacks proper mineral balance will fail to perform at its optimum level and the work that is cut out for individual cells is quite astonishing. As we understand more about the roles and inter-relationships between the minerals and organic life it is becoming clear that many of today’s problems, from general fatigue to the common cold or cancer may be related to mineral deficiencies or imbalances.

The human body can survive longer without all the essential vitamins than it can without the essential minerals – in fact we could not even begin to use vitamins if we had no minerals. Like the vitamins, minerals are generally consumed in minute quantities – even so the main categorization between minerals is that of major minerals and trace minerals. The major minerals have a structural role to play as well as causing reactions – for example calcium and phosphorus form a large part of the bones. The trace minerals are found in tiny quantities and just a bit too much or not enough can cause problems.

To actually get the minerals into your blood and your body you need to absorb them. Just taking a food substance into your mouth does not necessarily mean that you will derive all the potential benefits from it. You have to actually break the substance down and then get it across any barriers which are in the way, ensuring that your body does not think it is either waste or poison.

Some minerals are antagonistic towards each other, for example calcium and magnesium. They are very similar in structure and compete for spaces to jump into. This can cause problems if you have too much of one because it will prevent the absorption of the other. Many minerals are absorbed better in one chemical context than in another – for example your body may find it easier to absorb calcium from green leaves and seeds rather than milk and dairy produce. So what you eat is important both for that reason and also because it will affect the internal environment of your body, most importantly your intestines, through whose walls absorption takes place. If food passes through you quickly, as it does when you are suffering from diarrhoea, then absorption is diminished. Bacterial or fungal over-growth causes the surface area of the intestines to be reduced which results in absorption being further diminished.

You need to be able to move minerals to where you will use them once they are inside your body . We have special arrangements for transporting them around the body and for storing them in organs, like keeping iron in the liver. Both transportation and storage for minerals usually involve a protein dedicated for the task

Minerals work together in different ways – some are synergistic and help each other, while some are antagonistic. For example you should take vitamin B6 when you take zinc because they work far more effectively together, whereas zinc and manganese are antagonistic so you should take manganese if you are taking zinc supplements so that the extra zinc does not overwhelm the manganese causing deficiency. Some minerals play more significant roles in immunity than others – for example zinc is a necessary ingredient for T-cell immunity. Low levels have been associated with reduced antibody response, abnormal proportions of antibodies and defective cell-mediated immunity. You must have enough vitamin B6 to be able to use zinc properly and best food sources are pumpkin and sunflower seeds, whole grains, sea vegetables, watercress, lentils, parsley, okra and carrots. You lose lots of zinc every time you ejaculate (if you are a man) so future safer sex campaigns should involve keeping a bowl of almonds (also high in zinc) next to your bed to replace the lost zinc. Incidentally, one way of noticing zinc deficiencies is the white marks you may find in your finger nails.

Zinc is an antioxidant, as are selenium and germanium – two other trace minerals. Antioxidants are important for house keeping and getting rid of unwanted free radicals. Sodium and potassium are crucial for cell health because they are responsible (amongst other things) for water balance within your cells – too much sodium will cause flooding and all the cellular reactions will slow down. Now is a good time to get rid of the table salt and eat more vegetables and bananas which are renowned for their high potassium content. There are lots of accessible details in all libraries and bookshops about the roles of minerals and it is worth finding out some more.

Some minerals are bad for our health – these are known as heavy metals and include lead, aluminum and cadmium. The potential for receiving toxic minerals is all around us – cadmium for example is found in tobacco, oysters, some instant teas and coffees, some canned foods and the kidneys of pigs given cadmium as a worm killer, and can cause your kidneys and liver to malfunction.

Most of the minerals, especially the trace elements, are highly toxic to the body in excess. One example is iron, which is most concentrated in red meats, but also exists in more balanced proportions in dark leafy greens and sea vegetables. Iron-overload causes the sequestration of T-cells from the blood into bone marrow which makes them unavailable for cellular immunity (and lowers your T-cell count – good news for your doctor and the drug companies) – not so good for an embattled immune system. Add to this the fact that iron excess inhibits the absorption and utilization of zinc and you will begin to realize that mineral balances are fundamentally important.

Our health is largely dependent on the conditions of the soil in which our food is grown and the type and amount of fertilizers used. As we tend to focus on calories rather than the nutritional status of our plants, huge sums of agricultural money are spent on developing bigger plants which grow in less time in the smaller spaces. This drains the soil of its nutrients, so future plants which grow there will have less minerals available as will any creatures that eat them. Bearing in mind that there are not many minerals left in some soils, some types of fertilizers inhibit the uptake of certain minerals like nitrates causing crops to be deficient in magnesium. Many of our food crops are now generally deficient in magnesium, iron, zinc, selenium, manganese and copper. In order to improve our health and that of future generations we must re-mineralize our soils. In the meantime it is good to know that sea vegetables have not yet become so distorted.

Different parts of plants contain varying amounts of minerals – for example, white flour has only 6% of the magnesium that wheat germ contains, but within the agribusiness it is unprofitable to store wheat germ because it contains fat and goes off faster than white flour. It is therefore up to us, the consumers, to make informed decisions about the food we eat, and which parts of any plant, if any, we choose to call waste.

The time scale of mineral uptake and loss is long, it can be many months or even years before exposure or lack of exposure to certain elements is noted with respect to a person’s state of health and that usually takes the help of a trained nutritionist. If someone is deficient in a vitamin the problem can be treated instantaneously with vitamin supplements. With minerals, however the path to recovery is much longer.

Improving your mineral status by eating a whole food diet will ensure that you get the right minerals in the correct, purpose-built proportions and supplementing can improve the levels of some long-term imbalances with truly life-changing results. You can in fact heal yourself, if you make the necessary commitment to yourself and your lifestyle by correcting imbalances and deficiencies, introducing fewer toxins and getting rid of the ones you already have whilst increasing your life force. If you an antibody-positive diagnosis thank your lucky stars for the pause to think – if you don’t already, now is the time to start looking after yourself.

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 15, 2007

Do you know where in the digestive system vitamins and minerals enter the bloodstream?

While different vitamins and minerals are absorbed as they pass through different areas of the digestive tract (mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestine), they technically never enter the blood stream directly from the digestive system. This is because these nutrients are first absorbed from the digestive tract into the epithelial cells that line the digestive tract before they enter the blood stream. Once they have been absorbed into the epithelial cells they are no longer considered to part of the digestive system.

As noted above, nutrients undergo absorption in different areas of the digestive tract. For example, some nutrients can even undergo absorption at the very beginning of the digestive tract – inside the mouth! We know that vitamins B6, B12, folate and C can be absorbed in this way, and so can the mineral zinc. (You’ll find “sublingual” or “under-the-tongue” supplements in most health food stores for exactly this reason). Exactly how much vitamin and mineral absorption takes place in your mouth, however, depends on the form in which these vitamins and minerals are found in your food, how long you chew the food in question, the enzyme contents of your saliva, and other factors. In general, we get relatively little vitamin and mineral absorption in the mouth, but what we do get may be very important. There is good research in this area for supplements, and we need better research in this area for foods.

After the mouth, the next potential absorption site in our digestive tract is the stomach. While some vitamin and mineral absorption may also take place directly through the wall of your stomach, this amount appears to be minor and has not traditionally been considered to be part of our vitamin and mineral absorption process. Exceptions here would be the minerals copper, iodine, fluoride, and molybdenum, which may be significantly absorbed directly from the stomach.

The small intestine is by far the most important site in our digestive tract for both vitamin and mineral absorption. The small intestine is quite long (many feet in length) and virtually all vitamins and minerals can be absorbed from different areas of its surface. The part of the intestine closest to the stomach (called the duodenum) and the middle part of the small intestine (called the jejunum) specialized in absorption of most minerals. The vitamins are also spotlighted in these areas, with the exception of vitamin B12, whose primary absorption site is the very last segment of the small intestine, called the ileum. Literally hundreds of nutritive substances are absorbed from the small intestine.

The last part of the digestive tract – the large intestine – is particularly important for vitamin K absorption, biotin absorption, and the electrolyte minerals (sodium, chloride, and potassium).

Here is some further information from our website about the mechanisms involved with digestion and absorption of vitamins and minerals:

“Vitamins and minerals are quite varied in structure and amount in the foods you eat. They can be found in food in a free form, chemically bound to a larger molecule, or tightly encased inside a food aggregate. In most cases, they are liberated during eating by the mechanical process of grinding. They may also be liberated during the breakdown of the large molecules like proteins and starch, in which they may be encased.

Since your body requires specific amounts of these key nutrients, most vitamins and some minerals have active transports in place for absorption and are taken into the body in very specific ways. These active transport protein molecules act as shuttles, picking up the vitamin or mineral and taking it through the intestinal cell wall into the body, where it may be directly released or transferred to another transport molecule. Since vitamins and minerals are small and are usually found in much lower levels than amino acids, carbohydrate, and fats, these active transport protein molecules must select and pull these important molecules out of the food and take them into your body. Active transports require energy to function properly.

Calcium and iron are examples of minerals that are taken into the body by active transport. Most of the water-soluble vitamins have an active transport in place as well, and these active transports are primarily found in the middle section of the small intestine, the jejunum. Some minerals, like iron and calcium, are absorbed in the first part of the small intestine as well as the jejunum. The fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, K, and E), as discussed above, are absorbed with fat micelles, and therefore require fat to be present for their full absorption.

Magnesium is a mineral of tremendous importance for bone health, energy production, and overall healthy functioning throughout the body since it activates more than 300 cellular enzymes. Like calcium, magnesium must be constantly supplied to maintain optimal function. Magnesium doesn’t have an active transport, but depends entirely on dietary intake and a healthy intestinal lining for its absorption, and can be absorbed throughout the entire small intestine and even in the colon. Low intakes of magnesium, or loss of ability of the intestinal tract to absorb magnesium due to intestinal inflammation or disease, can result in a variety of problems such as muscle twitching or tremors, weakness, irritability and restlessness, depression, and weak bones. Magnesium is found at highest levels in whole foods such as grains but is often removed during processing. Whole grain bread and cereals will have a much higher amount of magnesium than white bread, which is made from refined flour.

Vitamin B12 is also absorbed differently from the other vitamins and minerals. First, it is most commonly found attached to proteins, and therefore requires protein breakdown to be liberated. Then, it requires a protein made in the stomach, called intrinsic factor, for its absorption, but is not absorbed until the vitamin B12-intrinsic factor complex reaches the final part of the small intestine, the ileum. Optimal digestion of vitamin B12 is dependent on your ability to make a healthy amount of stomach acid, since protein breakdown requires stomach acid and research has shown that intrinsic factor is also not secreted in adequate levels when stomach acid is low.”

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 14, 2007

The success of 100 mg of zinc and the homeopathic copper is outstanding. I can really feel that I can beathe so much better. I’m taking 25 mg of iron twice a day in between the zinc and one or two magnesium supplements and it seems to be all I need so these recent changes are working so I’d like to try something else. Years ago, my first introduction to homeopathic remedies was in the year 2000 when a person in a health food store recommened something called “Sinna” for my allergies. It helped me at the time so I’d like to try it again.

Sinna Homepathic Remedy

Sinna products are homeopathic formulas for the relief of sinus congestion and inflammation. Sinna nasal spray helps counteract rhinitis and sinusitis due to colds or allergies by moisturizing the nasal mucous membrane.

Composition:
Hydrastis canadensis 6X 20%, Kali bichromicum 6X 20%, Lemna minor 4X 20%, Luffa operculata 6X 20%, Mercurius sulphuratus ruber 8X 20% in an isotonic solution of 0.9% sodium chloride buffered with potassium dihydrogen phosphate and maximum 0.5% alcohol.

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 12, 2007

Day one and holy cow! The constant stuffiness in my nose has been reduced significantly. I’ve had this kind of success in the past by doing the same thing but I’m thinking now that even at 2 mg of copper, I was taking way too much. It’s always been hard for me to figure out if my copper is too high or too low. After this little experiment, I think it’s too high.

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 11, 2007

Today was the first day with the added supplements and by the afternoon I felt sick. I took them as directed so I’m not sure if it was the extra supplements or a reaction to the ones I was already taking.

Okay, time to switch direction because that idea was clearly not working. Starting tomorrow I’m only taking 100 mg of zinc and this time I’ll take it was the homeopathic copper instead of the usual 2 mg dosage. I’ll also stick to the homeopathic iron and magnesium and keep them close by in case I need them.

Let’s see what happens…

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 10, 2007

Went to the health food store today to try some different things that I may have not thought about before. I picked up silica, collagen and kelp. I wanted the silica for the role it plays with the absorption of vitamin and minerals. I wanted kelp for the iodine in a supplement form. I wanted the collagen for my weak knees. I’ve tried MSM and Glucosamine without any effect so I wanted something different. Here’s what I found on collagen:

Collagen Supplements

Sarah Quadri, Bachelor of Science in Biomolecular Science

Oral supplementation of collagen provides a way in which the body can be provided vital amino acids and proteoglycans (specialized sugars in the body) important to maintenance of connective tissues. Currently, two main collagen supplements are being utilized—a combined collagen type I & collagen type III oral supplement and a collagen type II supplement, as these are the most abundant types in the body.Collagen type I & collagen type III are the chief collagen types in hair, skin, nails, tendons, ligaments, muscles, bones, teeth, eyes, and blood vessels. Although their presence is beneficial in joint tissues, collagen type II is the true major component of joint cartilage. Collagen type II (particularly from chicken sternal cartilage) supplies vital amino acids, hyaluronic acid, chondroitin, and glucosamine for optimal articular (joint) cartilage support.

 

June 16, 2007 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 10, 2007

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Mineral relationships

Minerals are classified into two primary groups: major and minor (or trace). The major minerals consist of calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), phosphorus (P), sodium (Na), and potassium (K). The trace minerals consist of copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), selenium (Se), and iodine (I).

Mineral ratios are important because minerals interact and they compete with one another for absorption. Too much of one interferes with the absorption of other minerals. The figure below illustrates the diverse and complex nature of the interactions amongst minerals.

If a mineral has an arrow pointing to another mineral, it means a deficiency of that mineral or interference with its metabolism may be caused by excesses of the mineral from whence the arrow originates.

June 10, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 10, 2007

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Did some googling today about mineral relationships and here’s what I found.

Minerals

Every living cell on this planet depends on minerals for its structure and ability to function. Minerals are critical to every living thing. Formation of bones , formation of blood, proper composition of body fluids, muscle tone, the cardiovascular system, growth, healing, and energy production all require minerals. All enzyme activities in the body involve minerals, so minerals are essential for the body to utilize all vitamins and other nutrients.

The key word to remember when discussing minerals is–balance. The human body must maintain a proper chemical balance. This balance depends on the levels of different minerals in the body and the ratios of each mineral level to every other mineral. The level of each mineral has an effect on every other mineral level in the body. If one mineral level is out of balance, all mineral levels are affected. If this imbalance is not corrected, it starts a chain reaction that can lead to a wide range of illnesses. To illustrate this complex relationship, the following chart shows how each mineral reacts with other minerals:

  • Ca (Calcium) depresses Manganese, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Zinc
  • Mn (Manganese) depresses Iron, Phosphorus, Potassium, Magnesium
  • Fe (Iron) depresses Potassium, Phosphorus, Copper
  • Zn (Zinc) depresses Iron, Copper, Phosphorus, Cadmium
  • K (Potassium) depresses Na, Iron, Manganese
  • P (Phosphorus) depresses Zinc, Iron, Calcium, Magnesium
  • Cu (Copper) depresses Iron, Zinc, Phosphorus

It is difficult, if not impossible, to get the proper amounts of each mineral needed for a healthy lifestyle through diet alone. Continuous high yield farming has lowered the amount of minerals in the soil available to plants. Due to these depleted soils, vital minerals, especially the important trace minerals, have practically disappeared in the entire food chain. Most of the foods we eat are heavily processed before canning, freezing, or curing. These commercial processes lowers the amount of minerals in your food even more.

Today’s lifestyles also deplete our bodies of minerals. Stress, for example, will deplete your body of Potassium. Symptoms of Potassium deficiency may include: dry skin, edema, increased cholesterol levels, insomnia, muscle and general weakness, weak reflexes, acne, and continuous thirst. Even everyday items such as coffee, antacids, oral contraceptives, alcohol, antibiotics, and saturated fats will depress critical mineral levels in your body.

Taking mineral supplements may help, but you must remember the key word- BALANCE . For example, if a Calcium supplement is taken, the levels of Manganese, Phosphorus, Magnesium, and Zinc are depressed. It is difficult to determine the exact diet that you would need to add the minerals that the calcium depresses, as it would be difficult to find the exact amount of supplements to take to replace each mineral. Since every mineral level has an effect on the every other mineral level, and each mineral is needed in different amounts, and the ratios must be in balance to be healthy, what can you do?

June 10, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 09, 2007

Today I didn’t take any magnesium and by the end of the day, I started feeling those weird sensations in my head like I’m deficient in something. Is my magnesium still very low? It’s like a very subtle massage on the top of my head. Nerve endings maybe? Who knows?

June 10, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 09, 2007

I’ve always liked baby carrots and we buy them all the time. After showing this article to my wife, we switched to buying the real carrots and I was amazed at the difference in taste. Baby carrots only have 70% of the beta carotene of a normal carrot.. WOW!

Hidden Story Behind Baby Carrots

“Baby” carrots are not actually young carrots, or even carrots that are grown specifically to be small. In fact, the concept of the baby carrot was born 21 years ago by a California farmer wanting to sell more of his carrots that he was throwing away due to imperfections — they were too knobby, twisted or broken.

After cutting the less-than-perfect carrots down to a uniformly smaller size, they were fed through an industrial potato peeler to smooth the edges and remove the skin. This marked the birth of the “baby” carrot market.

The success of baby carrots may be a reflection of the desire for food that is uniform in appearance and taste, and for food that is sterile, prewashed, and prepackaged.

Baby carrots are made out of a variety of carrot known as the Imperator. They are bred to grow faster and ripen quickly, and because of this, they only have 70% of the beta carotene of a normal carrot.

Dr. Mercola’s Comment:

When you’re roaming the produce aisles at a grocery store, as a matter of habit you may pick up a small bag of baby carrots from time to time, thinking it’s a healthy snack and a fast one at that. You may reconsider spending your hard-earned money on baby carrots, however, after reviewing this interesting story about their secret origins.

The writer of the linked article stopped buying baby carrots upon realizing that those convenient, small and expensive packages of baby carrots she was buying at the grocery store were nearly tasteless compared to the delicious organic kind she purchased previously at a farmer’s market.

June 10, 2007 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

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