damage

Vitamin and Mineral Shortages Cause Degenerative Diseases

Thursday, April 01, 2010 by: Helmut Beierbeck
Tags: nutrition, degenerative disease, health news

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) When micronutrients like vitamins and minerals are in short supply they are temporarily reserved for the most essential organs, at the expense of less pressing tasks. This is a survival mechanism, an example of physiological triage (1). Neglecting less essential functions on occasion may do no harm but chronic shortages due to bad diets will cause health problems in the long run.

That micronutrients are crucially important should come as no surprise. Vitamins are defined as substances that the body needs but cannot make or cannot make in sufficient quantities; and we obviously cannot make minerals. Chronic micronutrient deficiencies therefore have to be expected to take their toll.

Vitamins and minerals play numerous roles; they are antioxidants, stabilize protein structures and act as enzyme cofactors. They are therefore involved in all aspects of physiology, including such fundamental tasks as DNA maintenance and repair (2).

Inefficient or incorrect DNA repair due to micronutrient shortages leads to genome instability, a known contributor to increased cancer risk, accelerated aging and neurodegenerative diseases (2). Genome damage caused by micronutrient deficiencies is believed to be at least as common and extensive as genome damage from environmental genotoxins like chemical carcinogens, UV and ionizing radiation. Genome instability caused by micronutrient deficiencies in turn increases DNA sensitivity to environmental genotoxins.

The increase in cancer risk with increased DNA damage was demonstrated in a case-control study involving participants from Scandinavia and Italy (3). Cancer patients and matching controls were divided into three groups according to the degree of chromosomal damage found in their lymphocytes. Those in the groups with the most extensive DNA damage were 2.35 (Scandinavia) and 2.66 (Italy) times as likely to develop cancer as those with the lowest amount of damage.

Separate analyses of the data for non-smokers, smokers and people with past exposure to environmental toxins produced essentially the same results (3). In other words, it didn`t matter whether the chromosomal abnormalities were caused by smoking, environmental genotoxins or other factors such as nutritional deficiencies; only the extent of DNA damage was important.

If micronutrient deficiencies cause DNA damage and DNA damage contributes to degenerative diseases, it makes sense to diagnose and try to prevent chromosomal damage by adequate micronutrient intakes. This has led to a call for adjusting recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) to optimize genome stability:

"There is a strong international awareness that it is also necessary to redefine RDA for the prevention of degenerative disease (such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer`s disease) and compression of the morbidity phase during old age. Because diseases of development, degenerative disease and ageing are partly caused by damage to DNA it seems logical that our attention would be better focused on defining optimal requirements of key minerals and vitamins for preventing damage to both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA." (2)

Optimal intakes for most of the micronutrients known to be critical - the vitamins C, E, B2, B6, B12, folate and niacin, and the minerals zinc, iron, magnesium and manganese - haven`t been determined yet. However, for those that have been studied - e.g. folate and vitamin B12 - intakes in excess of current RDA values are required to prevent chromosomal damage (2). Yet, many people don`t even reach current RDA values.

Optimizing micronutrient intakes seems like an effective and affordable way to reduce the degenerative disease burdens threatening to bankrupt medical care systems in developed countries.

Sources:

  1. Ames BN. Low micronutrient intake may accelerate the degenerative diseases of aging through allocation of scarce micronutrients by triage. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2006;103(47):17589-17594.
    http://www.pnas.org/content/103/47/17589.full.pdf

  2. Fenech M. Nutritional treatment of genome instability: a paradigm shift in disease prevention and in the setting of recommended dietary allowances. Nutr Res Rev 2003;16:109-122.
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1079/NRR200359

  3. Bonassi S, Hagmar L, Stromberg U et al. Chromosomal aberrations in lymphocytes predict human cancer independently of exposure to carcinogens. Cancer Res 2000;60:1619-1625.
    http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/cgi/reprint/60/6/1619



About the author

Helmut Beierbeck has a science background and a strong interest in all scientific aspects of health, nutrition, medicine, weight loss, or any other topic related to wellness. You can follow his ruminations on his blog http://healthcomments.info and leave comments on this or any other health-related topic.

Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.


Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support NaturalNews.com

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite NaturalNews.com with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...



GET SHOW DETAILS
+ a FREE GIFT

Now Available at ShopNaturalNews.com

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Podcasts
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...

 

Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...

 

Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through NaturalNews.com, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at www.StorableOrganics.com



Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
GMOs
Quackwatch
Vaccines
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of NaturalNews.com, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source: Alexa.com)

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.