Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for April 29, 2006

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With these new theories swirling around my head, I go to the Nutritional Summary web site and look up pears. From the list of protein and amino acids I notice that two of the highest ingredients are acids.

Pear (Raw)

Protein & Amino Acids:

Aspartic acid: 173 mg
Glutamic acid: 49.5 mg

Both of these work as excitatory neurotransmitters in the nervous system. As I look up the effects of Amino Acids and how diet can effect the nervous system, I come across Niacin deficiency:

Niacin
Niacin (nicotinic acid) is another one of the B-complex vitamins that may be linked to neurological damage. Mild niacin deficiency is associated with weakness, tremor, anxiety, depression and irritability.

Niacin helps increase energy through improving food utilization and has been used beneficially for treating fatigue, irritability, and digestive disorders, such as diarrhea, constipation, and indigestion. It may also stimulate extra hydrochloric acid production.

Nicotinic acid also helps reduce blood pressure and, very importantly, acts as an agent to lower serum cholesterol. Treatment with about 2 grams a day of nicotinic acid has produced significant reductions in both blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

In general, niacin deficiency affects every cell, especially in those systems with rapid turnover, such as the skin, gastrointestinal tract, and nervous system. Other than photosensitivity, the first signs of niacin deficiency are noted as decreased energy production and problems with maintaining healthy functioning of the skin and intestines. These symptoms include weakness and general fatigue, anorexia, indigestion, and skin eruptions. These can progress to other problems, such as a sore, red tongue, canker sores, nausea, vomiting, tender gums, bad breath, and diarrhea. The neurological symptoms may begin with irritability, insomnia, and headaches and then progress to tremors, extreme anxiety and depression. The skin will worsen, as will the diarrhea and inflammation of the mouth and intestinal tract. There will be a lack of stomach acid production (achlorhydria) and a decrease in fat digestion and, thus, lower availability from food absorption of the fat-soluble vitamins, such as A, D, and E.

The liver can synthesize niacin from the essential amino acid tryptophan but the synthesis is extremely slow and requires vitamin B6. Bacteria in the gut may also perform the conversion but are inefficient.

Many food charts list only sources that actually contain niacin and do not take into account tryptophan conversion into niacin. Approximately 60 mg of tryptophan can generate 1 mg of niacin. But tryptophan is available for conversion only when there are more than sufficient quantities in the diet to synthesize the necessary proteins as tryptophan is used in our body with the other essential amino acids to produce protein.

Niacin needs are based on caloric intake. We need about 6.6 mg. per 1,000 calories, and no less than 13 mg. per day. Women need at least 13 mg. and men at least 18 mg. per day. The RDA for children ranges from 9-16 mg.

A mild niacin deficiency can cause a tremor! How interesting… Is this the breakthrough I’ve been waiting for? I’m also wondering now if this explains why my triglyceride levels were so high on the last blood test. Back on April 11th, the acupuncture doctor told me there was only two reasons for high triglycerides.

1) Eat a lot of fat red meat.

2) Not eating enough fruits and vegetables.

Now there is a third: NIACIN Deficiency.

I look up pears and they only contain 0.3 mg of Niacin however a can of tuna has 21.5 mg per can and it contains 440 mg of tryptophan.

Looks like I’m having Tuna for lunch!

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April 28, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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