Discovering the Therapeutic Potential of Keystone Bacteria in Treating Chronic Disease

Discovering the Therapeutic Potential of Keystone Bacteria in Treating Chronic Disease

Keystone gut bacteria are the foundation of the whole microbial ecosystem because they provide very specific metabolic functions that support other more generalist micro-organisms.

This article originally appeared on the website of Ysopia Bioscience. Follow Ysopia Bioscience by clicking the following link: https://ysopia.bio/company/

 When it comes to microbiome, it’s all about balance. Our gut microbiome is like a virgin forest, a complex and diverse ecosystem that have evolved with our organs and function in symbiosis with our body. Our modern life, characterized by unhealthy diet, pollution, stress and chemical drug exposure such as antibiotics, etc. can strongly deteriorate our microbiome ecosystem and thus, reduce its richness. This imbalance of the microbiome, termed dysbiosis, influences the development of chronic diseases.

A healthy gut microbiome is composed of a mixture of micro-organisms including bacteria, fungi, viruses and others. Gut bacteria can be divided in 3 categories: dominant bacteria, subdominant keystone bacteria and opportunistic pathogens. The tenet of keystone species was coined in 1966 by the American ecologist Robert T. Paine. Referring to sea ecosystem, he demonstrated that the removal of sea stars had a dramatic impact on the shoreline ecosystem community and biodiversity.

Among the billions of bacteria that make up our body, certain families are the drivers of the gut microbiome structure and functioning. They are called “keystone taxa”.

Why are keystone bacteria unique for maintaining a healthy gut microbiome?

Contrary to what is commonly believed, the abundance of a species is not the best determinant of its contribution to the gut microbial ecosystem. Keystone taxa are often subdominant slow growers that set the scene for the fast growers, dominant bacteria. At the root of the gut microbiome community, keystone taxa help the rest of the ecosystem grow, and provide key functions.

An increasing number of scientific publications have highlighted a core microbial community, associated with major metabolic functions that must be present to maintain symbiosis. Within the core microbial community are keystone taxa whose role is to perform a range of precise metabolic processes. They are indeed responsible for narrow, non-redundant metabolic processes, that provide multiple benefits to the entire bacterial community.

In addition, despite their heterogeneity, microbes have one thing in common: they are highly gregarious communicating organisms. Keystone bacteria are highly effective at stimulating quorum sensing, that is a biological mechanism that brings microbes together through chemical signals attracting other bacteria and thus, creating the foundation of a stable microbial ecosystem. Once this healthy gut microbiome is established, this community will enter a bidirectional dialogue with the host to regulate the metabolism, immune system and neuronal activities.

Hence, removal or loss of keystone taxa can cause “a pyramid collapse”, thus generating a dramatic shift in microbiome structure and function, and resulting in a negative impact on our health.

At YSOPIA Bioscience, we strongly believe that keystone bacterial species are the key for treating chronic diseases associated with gut dysbiosis.

Oshun Health’s Pro32 Probiotics contains 9 strains and 32 different species of keystone organisms that create a beneficial environment for the entire bacterial community.
Henry Deale, chemist Oshun Health

Pro32 Probiotics

R350.00

Oshun Health’s Pro32 Probiotic contains nine strains and 32 species of live cultures.  It suppresses pathogen growth and stimulates beneficial microbiota. We believe it to be an essential go to after taking antibiotics, when changing one’s diet as well as during stressful situations.

Gut Health Combo

R510.00

Oshun Health’s Gut Health Combo consists of Fulvic Acid Liquid as well as Pro32 Probiotics. Read why the combination of these two products make perfect sense when trying to improve your gut health.

What You Need To Know Before Buying a Curcumin Product

What You Need To Know Before Buying a Curcumin Product

 

After 25 years of research there is no doubt that curcumin (the active ingredient in turmeric) can play a major role in fighting pro-inflammatory diseases like cancer, heart disease, arthritis, IBS, diabetes, atherosclerosis and many more. The question now isn’t whether to use curcumin, but which curcumin to use.

To distinguish fact from fiction when buying a curcumin product, here’s what you need to know:

  • Taking turmeric does not provide a sufficient dose of curcumin. Turmeric contains only about 3% curcumin and of the 3% almost none is absorbed by the body. Turmeric does have other health benefits, however.
  • Higher doses of curcumin in a product will not necessarily provide higher doses of curcumin. This sounds like a contradiction in terms, but a published study in the Journal of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3535097/) showed that even when individuals received doses as high as 2000mg of curcumin, blood serum levels of curcumin remained either undetectable or very low. In other words, individuals who partook in the study got virtually no benefits from taking a dose even as high as 2000mg of curcumin on its own.
  • Administering 20mg of piperine (black pepper) with curcumin, increases the bioavailability of curcumin by 2000%. This shows the importance of piperine in a curcumin product. Piperine also prevents the premature breakdown of curcumin in the gut and increases its lifespan. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3535097/
  • Liposomal encapsulation increases the absorption of curcumin by another 29 times! https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3535097/

The bottom line is that if the product doesn’t contain proven (see note below) measures/technology to increase absorption, curcumin remains virtually inabsorbable even at high doses.

Oshun Health’s Curcumin Boost contains piperine and uses our trademarked liposomal absorption system (fulvisomes) to increase absorption. This makes the product so absorbable that doses higher than 200mg should be taken with caution given that curcumin has a significant impact on blood sugar levels (lowers it) and certain medications (anticoagulants for instance).

*Note: An emulsion (mixture of two or more liquids that normally don’t mix, for instance vinegar and oil) is not the same as liposomal encapsulation. Emulsions are cheaper and easier to make than liposomes but will not provide the absorption that liposomes do.

 

Precautions when taking Curcumin

 

Turmeric in the diet is safe, but large amounts may cause gastric upset. Therefore it’s best to start with small doses and increase gradually. (Read Side effects of Turmeric)

One of the important precautions in relation to cardiovascular diseases is that turmeric has anti-platelet properties proven by animal studies. Though minimal amounts of dietary turmeric should not pose any problem, it is advisable to consult a health practitioner with regards to this, especially when you are already taking blood thinners.

Also, due to the anti-platelet properties of turmeric, it is advised to discontinue turmeric two weeks prior to surgery in order to avoid bleeding risks.

Turmeric supplements should be avoided during pregnancy and lactation.

Curcumin at low doses can cause gall bladder contractions, so if suffering from gallstones or gallbladder obstruction, avoid curcumin supplements. (Read Should you take turmeric if you have gallstones)

Turmeric as a spice is high in oxalates hence it is advisable to limit intake of turmeric as a spice in case of gout or kidney stones. (Read Is Turmeric safe in gout? Does Turmeric cause kidney stone?)

Curcumin in turmeric does interfere in drug metabolism. Therefore it is advised to avoid taking curcumin supplements concomitantly with other medications.

Consult a health practitioner prior to taking turmeric supplements.

 

 

Pro32 Probiotics

R350.00

Oshun Health’s Pro32 Probiotic contains nine strains and 32 species of live cultures.  It suppresses pathogen growth and stimulates beneficial microbiota. We believe it to be an essential go to after taking antibiotics, when changing one’s diet as well as during stressful situations.

Heart disease? How Can Curcumin Help.

Heart disease? How Can Curcumin Help.

14 Research Backed Benefits of Curcumin for Heart Health

 

Over 200 research studies have investigated the therapeutic efficacy of turmeric and curcumin in various heart conditions. Not only does turmeric protect the heart but it also combats various metabolic conditions that could serve as a risk factor to the development of heart diseases.

Heart disease contributes significantly to the mortality rate across the world today. In fact, heart disease is the leading cause of death globally.What’s more concerning is that it is not an ‘old age’ disease anymore. The more young and middle-aged population is suffering from heart disease today than ever before in history. Heart disease or cardiovascular diseases are a very broad term for a number of conditions that directly or indirectly affect heart health.

  • Coronary heart disease is the most common condition where the blood vessels connected with the heart are damaged.
  • Atherosclerosis is the build of plaque in blood vessels that obstructs blood flow.
  • Coronary heart disease is the most common condition where the blood vessels connected with the heart are damaged.
  • Heart attack or myocardial infarction is when blood flow to the heart is blocked by clots.
  • Strokes are conditions when blood vessels providing blood to the brain are blocked.
  • Arrhythmia is a condition where the rhythm of the heart is abnormal.

Risk factors that lead to heart diseases involve obesity, lack of exercise, unhealthy diet, use of tobacco, alcohol as well as stress-related factors.

Preventing cardiovascular diseases is the first line of defence which would translate as a change in diet as well as lifestyle. In those suffering from heart conditions medications are provided to treat cholesterol, lower blood pressure, prevent clot formation. In certain conditions, surgical procedures may be required. These procedures not only involve risks but also lead to a heavy burden of costs in healthcare.

Wouldn’t it be nice if there is just only one compound that does all these things: lowers cholesterol, reduces blood pressure, protects heart and blood vessels, helps in weight loss, prevent clot formation, etc. There is one such compound and its name is curcumin.

1. It has a cardioprotective effect

Curcumin has a cardioprotective action- its pharmacological properties help in protecting the heart and also benefits individuals with various heart conditions. These pharmacological properties involve antioxidant action, anti-inflammatory action, antiplatelet activity, etc.

Cardiac hypertrophy is a condition in which the heart muscle thickens and reduces the size of heart chambers. Animal studies show that curcumin can benefit individuals who suffer from cardiac hypertrophy by affecting genetic expressions.

Cardiac arrhythmia is an abnormal rhythm of the heart. A study published in the International Journal of Cardiology, 2009 suggests that curcumin’s anti-inflammatory action and ability to affect calcium homeostasis can benefit people who suffer from arrhythmia and also prevent arrhythmia.

What does this mean?
Curcumin found in turmeric protects heart. Research confirms its role in various heart conditions like congenital heart disease, cardiac arrhythmia, cardiac hypertrophy, ischemia-reperfusion injury, chemotherapy induced cardiotoxicity etc.

2. It has an anti-inflammatory effect

Turmeric and curcumin have natural anti-inflammatory property. In inflammatory conditions like arthritis, curcumin is found to counteract inflammation as effectively as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Curcumin acts on major proteins that regulate the inflammatory process like Nuclear factor kappa B. It reduces the production of inflammatory cytokines and also inhibits their action. It prevents the migration of immune cells to the site of inflammation. This anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin and turmeric is beneficial in various heart conditions like myocarditis, cardiac fibrosis, cardiotoxicity, etc.

What does this mean?
Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory action benefits in heart health and prevention of various heart diseases such as myocarditis, cardiac fibrosis, atherosclerosis etc.

3. It is an antioxidant

One of the prime reasons why antioxidants are touted to be beneficial for health is because they are heart friendly agents.

Apart from improving the body’s antioxidant defense, dietary antioxidants can help in reducing inflammation and lowering cholesterol which, in turn, benefit heart health and can reduce the risk of heart diseases.

Curcumin and curcuminoids are strong antioxidants and their antioxidant activity is comparable to that of vitamin C and E.

Research shows that curcumin’s antioxidant action can protect from obesity-induced cardiac surgery, cardiotoxicity, atherosclerosis, diabetes-related heart conditions, and various other heart conditions.

What does this mean?
Turmeric is rich in antioxidants, primarily curcumin and curcuminoids which help fight and prevent heart diseases.

4. It protects from heart attacks

Curcumin is cardioprotective in nature. Curcumin is found to act on the genes that affect the cardiac repair and cardiac function after a heart attack. Curcumin is found to improve the antioxidant profile, reduce inflammation and also regulates the repair of cells found in heart muscles after a heart attack.

Researchers suggest that dietary curcumin is beneficial for those recovering from a heart attack as it facilitates proper cardiac repair. A study published in the American Journal of Cardiology, 2012 examined the effect of curcuminoid therapy in those undergoing specific heart surgery. The idea was to see whether curcumin provides sufficient cardioprotection after the surgery as this surgery is associated with poor outcomes and the current treatment options to protect the heart are limited. The 121 patients enrolled in the study received 4g of curcuminoids or a placebo per day for 3 days prior to surgery and continued till 5 days after the surgery.

It was found that the incidence of heart attack was 30% in the placebo group while it was only 13.1% in curcuminoids group. Improvement in antioxidant and inflammatory status was also observed. (Important note from Oshun Health: Curcumin is a blood thinner and should never be taken before surgery unless under doctor’s supervision.)

What does this mean?
Curcumin offers cardioprotection that can help prevent heart attack. Dietary curcumin is found to be beneficial in promoting heart repair in those who have suffered from heart attack.

5. It reduces the risk of atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis is characterized by a build-up of plaque in blood vessels due to elevated levels of cholesterol and fats. This constricts blood vessel thereby affecting blood flow and blood pressure. A study published in Atherosclerosis, 2014 demonstrates that curcumin can attenuate diet-induced atherosclerosis. It ameliorates dyslipidemia (abnormal lipid/fat levels in the blood), reduces expression of inflammatory enzymes, prevents the formation of fatty streaks (precursors to plaque build up in blood vessels) and also protects liver function. However these effects are found to be dose dependent, researchers suggest that a medium dose of curcumin in the diet is more effective than high dose curcumin in atherosclerosis.

Curcumin acts on various genetic expression, liver function as well as raises antioxidant defenses in order to prevent atherosclerosis. A study published in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry,2014 investigated the effect of curcumin in type 2 diabetes patient who was at high risk of developing atherosclerosis. Curcumin was found to regulate hormones linked with fat metabolism and also to reduced pulse wave velocity (a parameter that indicates the stiffness of arteries or how blocked they are in terms of obstructed blood flow).

Other changes observed were the reduction in body fat, improvement in insulin activity, reduced blood lipid levels etc. Curcumin therapy successfully improved metabolic health thereby preventing atherosclerosis in type 2 diabetes.

What does this mean?
Turmeric contains curcumin which can help prevent atherosclerosis as an antioxidant and by regulating cholesterol levels and liver function. It helps improve overall metabolic health in order to prevent atherosclerosis.

6. It benefits in myocarditis

Myocarditis is inflammation of the heart muscle. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties can support individuals with myocarditis. A study published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 2013 demonstrated curcumin’s therapeutic efficacy in viral myocarditis. It was found that curcumin brought down levels of inflammatory enzymes by acting on key proteins involved in inflammation.

Mito et.al have proven via an animal study that curcumin counteracts inflammation in autoimmune myocarditis.

Other studies point out that curcumin’s immunomodulatory (ability to regulate immune function) and antioxidant action protect heart function in autoimmune myocarditis. These properties can help in protecting heart function and preventing the progress of myocarditis, thus making curcumin a novel therapy in myocarditis.

What does this mean?
Various pharmacological properties of turmeric and curcumin such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-microbial action benefit in treatment of myocarditis. Curcumin’s immunomodulatory action can help control inflammation in autoimmune myocarditis.

7. It improves vascular function

Vascular function or endothelial function refers to the health of blood vessels. This parameter indicates the balance between constriction and relaxation of blood vessels thereby affecting blood flow and blood pressure. Endothelial dysfunction is when this state is imbalanced. Curcumin is found to protect from endothelial dysfunction caused by drug induced toxicity.

A recent study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, 2016 demonstrated that supplementation of 200mg curcumin every day for 8 weeks brings about a significant increase in flow-mediated dilation (FMD) – an indicator of improved blood flow and better endothelial function.FMD.

Based on the results of this clinical trial researchers suggested that simple oral supplementation of curcumin can improve cardiovascular health. A really interesting study published in Nutrition Research, 2012 demonstrated that oral curcumin intake is as efficacious as moderate aerobic exercise in improving endothelial function in postmenopausal women.

What does this mean?
Endothelial dysfunction indicates impaired health of blood vessels. Simple curcumin supplementation or dietary turmeric is found to improve vascular function in as little as single consumption as well as over a period of 2-3 months.

8. It may help to counteract thrombosis

Thrombosis or clot formation can present serious health complications. This is where curcumin’s anti-platelet property can help. A study published in Thrombosis Research, 1995 reveals that curcumin has an anti-thrombotic action. Further research reveals that curcumin is as effective as aspirin (an anticoagulant or blood thinner) in treating thrombosis. However, these findings need to be confirmed via human studies.

What does this mean?
Curcumin and turmeric’s anti-platelet action may help maintain anti-coagulant status and benefit in thrombosis.

9. It benefits individuals with cardiac fibrosis

Many heart diseases are associated with fibrosis. Cardiac fibrosis is scarring of the cardiac tissue which leads to the thickening of the tissue. Thickening leads to the reduction of heart chambers thus causing arrhythmia.

A recent study published in Drug Design, Developmental and Therapy, 2016 shows that curcumin has an anti-fibrotic action. It acts via the SIRT1 gene which is famous for its anti-aging action but also plays a significant role in fibrosis.

Curcumin may also benefit individuals with cardiac fibrosis by reducing collagen synthesis and facilitating collagen breakdown. It also inhibits the activity of enzymes that initiate scarring of the cardiac tissue.

In their animal study, Meng et.al proved that curcumin attenuates cardiac fibrosis occurring as a result of hypertension or high blood pressure.

What does this mean?
Curcumin is natural anti-fibrotic agent. Research proves that curcumin can be a novel therapeutic agent in cardiac fibrosis.

10. It can have a therapeutic effect on coronary artery disease

Coronary arteries are those that are directly linked to the heart via the aorta. Coronary artery disease is when plaque builds up in these arteries. This is one of the most common heart diseases.

As mentioned previously, curcumin has an  anti-atherosclerotic effect – it prevents the buildup of plaque.

In a study, patients with coronary artery disease were treated with 500mg curcumin 4 times a day for 2 months. Curcumin treatment brought about a decrease in blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels, as well as triglyceride levels. However, no significant change in inflammatory parameters was observed.

What does this mean?
Curcumin’s anti-atherosclerotic activity and anti-platelet property benefits individuals with  coronary artery disease.

11. It may lower blood pressure

Curcumin may lower blood pressure by acting on angiotensin receptors; angiotensin being one of the hormones that regulate blood pressure and kidney function.

Curcumin derivatives have been identified to have vasorelaxant properties – they help blood vessels relax for better blood flow and reduced blood pressure. Nanocurcumin has proven anti-hypertensive property and this activity is comparable to catopril, a prescription drug used to treat blood pressure.

What does this mean?
Turmeric helps to lower blood pressure by acting on various enzymes that regulate and control blood pressure levels. It also helps alleviate hypertension by acting on other aspects of metabolic health that could serve as a risk factor for developing high blood pressure.

12. It lowers cholesterol

Curcumin has an hypocholesterolemic effect in other words it lowers cholesterol levels. There are many mechanisms involved in this activity, for example, curcumin acts on the genes involved in fat metabolism in order to lower cholesterol levels.

A study was conducted to assess the effect of curcumin on lipid levels in patients suffering from acute coronary syndrome. 75 patients participated in this study.

Curcumin was given in the following doses:

• Low dose: 3 times 15mg/day
• Moderate dose: 3 times 30mg/day
• High dose: 3 times 60mg/day

A dose dependent change in lipid and cholesterol level was observed with curcumin therapy. Low dose curcumin brought about a better reduction as well as an increase in HDL cholesterol.

Researchers concluded that low dose curcumin is efficacious in reducing cholesterol- and LDL levels.

What does this mean?
Curcumin helps lower cholesterol levels and this protects heart and vascular health by preventing atherosclerosis, hyperlipidemia etc.

13. It benefits in metabolic health

Metabolic health is very intricately linked with heart health. Metabolic syndrome is a broad term for a number of health conditions like high cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, obesity, etc.

Turmeric and Nigella sativa seed supplementation for 4 weeks is found to improve all parameters associated with metabolic syndrome.

Results of a clinical trial published in Phytotherapy Research, 2016 demonstrated that curcumin supplementation brought a significant reduction in liver fat and brought about a 78.9% improvement in the disease.

Turmeric and curcumin’s multiple benefits and ability to lower blood sugar levels is found to benefit in diabetes and protect against diabetes-induced cardiac risk.

What does this mean?
Curcumin treats various aspects of metabolic health and helps ameliorate various conditions like metabolic syndrome, diabetes and fatty liver disease which otherwise would pose a risk for heart diseases.

14. It protects the heart against aging

Turmeric and curcumin are excellent natural agents for the prevention of age-related health deficits. (Read Turmeric for Aging)

Khurana et.al have identified curcumin as one of the plant polyphenols that can help protect the aging heart. Santos-Parker et.al demonstrated that high dose curcumin supplementation for 12 weeks improved endothelial function in elderly and middle-aged individuals. Curcumin’s antioxidant activity was responsible for this action.

The combination of endurance exercise and curcumin intake is found to benefit and improve vascular function in postmenopausal women.

What does this mean?
Curcumin’s antioxidant and cardioprotective property benefits and supports heart health in aging.

Precautions

Turmeric in the diet is safe, but large amounts may cause gastric upset. Therefore it’s best to start with small doses and increase gradually. (Read Side effects of Turmeric)

One of the important precautions in relation to cardiovascular diseases is that turmeric has anti-platelet properties proven by animal studies. Though minimal amounts of dietary turmeric should not pose any problem, it is advisable to consult a health practitioner with regards to this, especially when you are already taking blood thinners.

Also, due to the anti-platelet properties of turmeric, it is advised to discontinue turmeric two weeks prior to surgery in order to avoid bleeding risks.

Turmeric supplements should be avoided during pregnancy and lactation.

Curcumin at low doses can cause gall bladder contractions, so if suffering from gallstones or gallbladder obstruction, avoid curcumin supplements. (Read Should you take turmeric if you have gallstones)

Turmeric as a spice is high in oxalates hence it is advisable to limit intake of turmeric as a spice in case of gout or kidney stones. (Read Is Turmeric safe in gout? Does Turmeric cause kidney stone?)

Curcumin in turmeric does interfere in drug metabolism. Therefore it is advised to avoid taking curcumin supplements concomitantly with other medications.

Consult a health practitioner prior to taking turmeric supplements.

Pro32 Probiotics

R350.00

Oshun Health’s Pro32 Probiotic contains nine strains and 32 species of live cultures.  It suppresses pathogen growth and stimulates beneficial microbiota. We believe it to be an essential go to after taking antibiotics, when changing one’s diet as well as during stressful situations.

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency really that bad?

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency really that bad?

What harm can having too little of vitamin B12 do? Consider this: Over the course of two months, a 62-year-old man developed numbness and a “pins and needles” sensation in his hands, had trouble walking, experienced severe joint pain, began turning yellow, and became progressively short of breath. The cause was lack of vitamin B12 in his bloodstream, according to a case report from Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital published in The New England Journal of Medicine. It could have been worse—a severe vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to deep depression, paranoia and delusions, memory loss, incontinence, loss of taste and smell, and more.

This article was written by Harvard Health Publishing Staff for the website Harvard Health Publishing. Follow Harvard Health Publishing by clicking the following link: https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat

 

Why vitamin B12 is important.

 

The human body needs vitamin B12 to make red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and carry out other functions. The average adult should get 2.4 micrograms a day. Like most vitamins, B12 can’t be made by the body. Instead, it must be gotten from food or supplements.

And therein lies the problem: Some people don’t consume enough vitamin B12 to meet their needs, while others can’t absorb enough, no matter how much they take in. As a result, vitamin B12 deficiency is relatively common, especially among older people.

 

Are you at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency?

 

There are many causes for vitamin B12 deficiency. Surprisingly, two of them are practices often undertaken to improve health: a vegetarian diet and weight-loss surgery.

Plants don’t make vitamin B12. The only foods that deliver it are meat, eggs, poultry, dairy products, and other foods from animals. Strict vegetarians and vegans are at high risk for developing a B12 deficiency if they don’t eat grains that have been fortified with the vitamin or take a vitamin supplement. People who have weight-loss surgery are also more likely to be low in vitamin B12 because the operation interferes with the body’s ability to extract vitamin B12 from food.

Conditions that interfere with nutrient absorption, such as celiac or Crohn’s disease, can cause B12trouble. So can the use of commonly prescribed heartburn drugs, which reduce acid production in the stomach (acid is needed to absorb vitamin B12). The condition is more likely to occur in older people due to the decrease in stomach acid production that often occurs with aging.

 

Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms

 

Vitamin B12 deficiency can be slow to develop, causing symptoms to appear gradually and intensify over time. It can also come on relatively quickly. Given the array of symptoms a vitamin B12 deficiency can cause, the condition can be overlooked or confused with something else. Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms may include:

  • strange sensations, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet
  • difficulty walking (staggering, balance problems)
  • anemia
  • a swollen, inflamed tongue
  • difficulty thinking and reasoning (cognitive difficulties), or memory loss
  • weakness
  • fatigue

While an experienced physician may notice the symptoms and be able to detect a vitamin B12 deficiency with a good interview and physical exam, a blood test is needed to confirm the condition.

It’s a good idea to ask your doctor about having your B12 level checked if you are a strict vegetarian or have had weight-loss surgery or have a condition that interferes with the absorption of food.

Early detection and treatment is important. If left untreated, the deficiency can cause severe neurologic problems and blood diseases.

 

Boosting your B12

A serious vitamin B12 deficiency can be corrected two ways: weekly shots of vitamin B12 or daily B12 supplements. A mild B12 deficiency can be corrected with a standard supplement.

In many people, a vitamin B12 deficiency can be prevented. If you are a strict vegetarian or vegan, it’s important to eat breads, cereals, or other grains that have been fortified with vitamin B12 or take a daily supplement. A standard multivitamin delivers 6 micrograms, more than enough to cover the average body’s daily need.

What vitamin B12 can’t do

 

The Internet is full of articles lauding the use of vitamin B12 to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, and other chronic conditions or reverse infertility, fatigue, eczema, and a long list of other health problems. Most are based on poor or faulty evidence.

Take Alzheimer’s disease as an example. Although there is a relationship between low vitamin B12 levels and cognitive decline, clinical studies—including those involving people with Alzheimer’s disease—have not shown improvement in cognitive function, even doses of the vitamin as high as 1000 micrograms.

For now, it’s best to get enough vitamin B12 to prevent a deficiency, and not look to it as a remedy for what ails you.

 

Oshun Health’s Liposomal B-Complex is made from the metabolites of vitamin‐producing microorganisms (probiotics). It, therefore, provides a natural alternative to chemically synthesised vitamin B supplements while not containing animal products. All the B-vitamins are in their biologically active forms. The product also, naturally, contains 8 essential amino acids as well as vitamin K and other nutrients as further byproducts of microbial activity. Liposomal B-Complex is highly absorbable due to our liposomal absorption technology – fulvisomes.

Henry Deale, chemist Oshun Health

  • Liposomal B-Complex (500ml)

    R350.00
  • Phyto Fuel (500ml)

    R659.00

Is It Safe To Take Curcumin with Arthritis Medication?

Is It Safe To Take Curcumin with Arthritis Medication?

As per research, turmeric is one of the most potent herbs for treating arthritis naturally. Turmeric as a herb and its active ingredient curcumin are proven, natural anti-arthritic agents. They help reduce pain and inflammation and also halt disease progression. Arthritis treatment involves the prescription of various drugs to help manage pain and prevent the disease from progressing. So a common concern presented is the possible herb-drug interaction with turmeric and arthritis medications. But is it safe to take turmeric alongside arthritis medication? Let’s find out.

The following article was written by by Fazila (B.Sc Biotech. & Bioinformatics for the website Turmeric For Health. Follow Turmeric For Health by clicking the following link: https://www.turmericforhealth.com/

 

Is it safe to take turmeric/curcumin with arthritis medication?

 

The answer is yes, it is safe to take turmeric (curcumin) in the regular diet with arthritis medications. If taking large doses of Golden Paste or turmeric supplements for arthritis, maintain a 3-4 hour gap between taking turmeric and arthritis medications.

Turmeric and black pepper interfere in the activity of drug metabolizing enzymes, and hence it is advised to maintain the gap. Curcumin in turmeric may increase the therapeutic action of arthritis medications and protect from their side effects as well.

Let’s examine the scientific details behind the safety of taking turmeric and curcumin with arthritis medications.

 

Curcumin may change drug absorption

 

Turmeric and curcumin are safe for consumption. Dietary turmeric does not pose any risk. Curcumin present in turmeric is found to regulate the activity of enzymes involved in drug metabolism.

Piperine, bioactive of black pepper, is used to enhance the bioavailability of turmeric (Read How to improve turmeric’s bioavailability). Piperine is a strong bioenhancer and increases the absorption of various drugs. This increased absorption delivers a therapeutic effect, but on a long-term, it may cause side effects.

Hence it is advised to maintain a 3-4 hour gap between taking arthritis medications and curcumin supplements.

 

 

 

A few precautions to be noted when taking turmeric:

 

  • Avoid taking turmeric supplements if experiencing bleeding disorders or taking antiplatelet medications. (Read Curcumin: Side effects & Precautions)
  • Discontinue turmeric supplements two weeks before surgery.
  • Limit or avoid turmeric powder if you have kidney stones or gout. Opt for supplements if needed. (Read Side Effects of Turmeric)
  • Limit turmeric intake in case of gallbladder stones.
  • Avoid taking turmeric on an empty stomach. (Read Precautions with Turmeric Use)
  • Start with small doses of turmeric and increase gradually to minimize gastric side effects.
  • Avoid turmeric supplements in pregnancy and lactation.

Conclusion

 

Turmeric can be safely consumed as a part of the regular diet when taking arthritis medications. You can also take turmeric therapeutically or as supplements when on conventional arthritis treatment; maintain a 3-4 hour gap.

 

 

Oshun Health’s Curcumin Boost contains the full spectrum of biologically active curcuminoids. Due to the liposomal absorption technology and piperine in Curcumin Boost the product is highly bio-available and can not be offered in doses higher than 200mg.
Henry Deale, chemist Oshun Health

Curcumin Boost (250ml)

R350.00

Oshun Health’s Curcumin Boost contains piperine which makes curcumin 2000% more bio-available, increases its lifespan, and prevents its premature breakdown in the gut. Curcumin Boost also uses Oshun Health’s trademarked liposomal encapsulation system – fulvisomes – to increase absorption by a further 19x.

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