Crack Down on Vitamins Again?

March 2, 2009

GAO report – Dietary Supplements: FDA Should Take Further Actions to
Posted by: “Douglas Kalman”   dougkalman
Mon Mar 2, 2009 12:28 pm (PST)

New GAO Report Finds Need for Additional FDA Oversight of Dietary



Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA), Rep. John D. Dingell (D-MI), Rep. Bart
Stupak (D-MI), and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) released a new Government
Accountability Office (GAO) report identifying several factors that
limit FDA’s ability to protect consumers from unsafe dietary
supplements. These factors are limits on FDA’s authority to obtain
information about dietary supplements on the market, few FDA resources
devoted to dietary supplement oversight, and limits on FDA’s authority
to remove unsafe dietary supplements from the market.

The report calls for additional FDA regulatory authority to ensure
better FDA oversight of dietary supplements, including enhanced
registration of dietary supplement facilities and expanded reporting of
adverse health effects of supplement products. The report recommends
that FDA issue guidance to industry to clarify which supplement
ingredients are new and to submit evidence of safety before they can be
marketed. The report also notes the need for more consumer outreach and

“I am troubled that the FDA lacks the basic information necessary to
protect consumers from unsafe dietary supplements,” said Rep. Waxman,
Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee. “The FDA clearly needs to
have more resources to give consumers real protection. I intend to work
with my colleagues in Congress to ensure that FDA has the tools it needs
to address this and other important public health missions.”

“We know that there are problems with the FDA. Reports like this show us
just how deep the problems run,” said Rep. Dingell, Chairman Emeritus of
the Energy and Commerce Committee. “FDA is woefully unprepared to deal
with dietary supplements and in its current condition, FDA can not fix
the problem. FDA needs the resources and adequate authorities so the
agency can start addressing this problem. The GAO findings are quite
valuable and Americans will be quite distressed as they learn just how
ineffective the FDA has become in regulating dietary supplements.”

“Based on GAO’s analysis, we can add dietary supplements to the growing
list of products that show the FDA is failing at its core mission of
protecting the public’s health,” said Rep. Stupak, Chairman of the
Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee. “We need new leadership in
place at the FDA to finally begin the task of recommitting the agency to
protecting the American people from unsafe food, drugs, medical devices
and now dietary supplements. The FDA should review and quickly implement
GAO’s recommendations, particularly working to expand efforts to collect
adverse event data from consumers in order to better understand the
problems encountered with use of dietary supplements.”

“There are 29,000 varieties of dietary supplements on the market today
with 1,000 new products being introduced each year. Many of these
products are safe; I take my vitamins every day. The problem is that
some supplements contain concentrated extracts of herbs and botanicals
mixed with other ingredients that can be harmful,” said Assistant Senate
Majority Leader Durbin. “Our experience with ephedra should convince
everyone that the FDA should have the regulatory authority it needs to
protect the American consumer. I will continue work with my colleagues
in Congress and with the administration to make sure we do to everything
we can to protect the public health.”

The GAO report, Dietary Supplements: FDA Should Take Further Actions to
Improve Oversight and Consumer Understanding
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states that a lack of information is one of the most significant factors
that limit the FDA’s ability to identify and properly act on safety
concerns regarding dietary supplements and foods with added dietary
ingredients. GAO recommends that the FDA issue guidance on new dietary
ingredients and clarify the difference between dietary supplements and
foods with added dietary ingredients to prevent firms from circumventing
safety standards by simply reclassifying their products as dietary
supplements. The report noted the need for improved education and
outreach efforts to increase consumer understanding of the safety and
efficacy of dietary supplements and foods with added dietary
ingredients. And GAO also recommends that the FDA be given additional
authority to require firms to self-identify as dietary supplement
companies, to provide information about their dietary supplement and
dietary additive products and ingredients, and to report adverse events.


Fat Parents Influence Fat Children

July 18, 2008

Parents of overweight households tend to create overweight children. Not only is it caused by the overall diet of the family it is also due to expressed fat genes.

A woman’s bodyweight before and during pregnancy has a large influence on the future weight of her child. Children born to women who dad gastric bypass sugery are 1/2 as likly yo become obese.

A study done on Folic Acid mixed with other supplements shows that in mice the legacy of fatness can be broken.

Waterland, R.A., Travisano, M., Tahiliani, K.G., Rached, M.T., Mirza, S. (2008). Methyl donor supplementation prevents transgenerational amplification of obesity. International Journal of Obesity DOI

You Can Live Long Enough to live Forever

July 2, 2008

You Can Live Long Enough to live Forever sounds like a crazy claim but it may come true.

“Do we have the knowledge and the tools today to live forever? If all science and technology development suddenly stopped, the answer would have to be no. We do have the means to dramatically slow disease and the aging process far more than most people realize, but we do not yet have all the techniques we need to indefinitely extend human life. However, it is clear that far from halting, the pace of scientific and technological discovery is accelerating.

According to models that Ray has created, our paradigm-shift rate—the rate of technical progress—is doubling every decade, and the capability (price performance, capacity, and speed) of specific information technologies is doubling every year.4 So the answer to our question is actually a definitive yes—the knowledge exists, if aggressively applied, for you to slow aging and disease processes to such a degree that you can be in good health and good spirits when the more radical life-extending and life-enhancing technologies become available over the next couple of decades.

Longevity expert and gerontologist Aubrey de Grey uses the metaphor of maintaining a house to explain this key concept. How long does a house last? The answer obviously depends on how well you take care of it. If you do nothing, the roof will spring a leak before long, water and the elements will invade, and eventually the house will disintegrate. But if you proactively take care of the structure, repair all damage, confront all dangers, and rebuild or renovate parts from time to time using new materials and technologies, the life of the house can essentially be extended without limit.” from Chapt 1 of Fantastic Voyage:Live Long Enough to live Forever by Ray Kurzweil & Terry Grossman M.D.

Low Levels of Vitamin D Bad for Heart

June 26, 2008

The lower the levels of vitamin D the greater the risk of heart attack.

“Vitamin D deficiency may be involved in the development of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease in humans. Low levels of 25(OH)D are associated with higher risk of myocardial infarction in a graded manner, even after controlling for factors known to be associated with coronary artery disease.”

25-Hydroxyvitamin D and Risk of Myocardial Infarction in Men: A Prospective Study

Edward Giovannucci, MD, ScD; Yan Liu, MS; Bruce W. Hollis, MD, PhD; Eric B. Rimm, ScD

Arch Intern Med. 2008;168(11):1174-1180.

Niacin’s Cholesterol-lowering Role

June 6, 2008]
Niacin’s cholesterol-lowering role is so accepted even many Doctors recommend Niacin for lowering cholesterol. Now there is a better understanding how Niacin lowers cholesterol. Naicin increases the amount of HDL, good cholesterol, from being broken down by up to 35%.

“The findings add to our expanding knowledge about the mechanism of niacin action on its wide range of clinical effects including… anti-inflammatory, anti-thrombotic and flushing effects.”

Source: Journal of Lipid Research June 2008, Volume 49, Pages 1195-1201″Niacin inhibits surface expression of ATP synthase B-chain in HepG2 cells: implications for raising HDL.”Authors: L.-H. Zhang, V.S. Kamanna, M.C. Zhang, M.L. Kashyap


Problem DNA Can Be Fixed by Nutrition

June 4, 2008

Many diseases and sicknesses are caused by the wrong reading of our DNA and changes to our enzymes. Enzymes to much more than digest food. Enzymes release energy and allow our body to produce energy from our food. Enzymes can act as antioxidants to protect us from cell damage and mutation. Enzymes are very important to maintain American health and nutrition. Without the right amount nutrition from enzymes, vitamins and minerals, our health is in jeopardy.

When our RNA misreads our DNA to produce these life giving enzymes our health can go downhill. One of the key causes of aging is damage from free-radicals that are usually squelched by enzymes. The American diet is low in nutrition from enzymes, vitamins and minerals.

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) & the American Army is testing what nutritional supplements can be taken to fix defective enzymes.

“Our soldiers, like top athletes, operate under extreme conditions that may well be limited by their physiology,” Rine said. “We’re now working with the defense department to identify variants of enzymes that are remediable, and ultimately hope to identify troops that have these variants and test whether performance can be enhanced by appropriate supplementation.”

Folic Acid protects against birth defects because it helps produce the MTHFR enzyme that helps makes DNA. Folic Acid also protects against the heart damaging homocysteine.

Scientists think vitamins and minerals protect enzymes because vitamins and minerals help make the enzymes hold their proper shape. Proper health and nutrition can be assured by appropriate supplementation of vitamins and minerals.

Vitamin E Protects the Skin

May 22, 2008

One of the key causes of aging is incorrect transcription of DNA by RNA to reproduce the next line in cells. Both the Alpha & Gamma forms of Vitamin E can help the tRNA read the DNA more correctly; at least in Mice. Mice are always used as a close model to humans when humans can’t be used in an experiement.

American Society for Nutrition J. Nutr. 138:1010-1018, June 2008
Alpha and Gamma Tocopherol Prevent Age-Related Transcriptional Alterations in the Heart and Brain of Mice

“These results demonstrate that middle age-onset dietary supplementation with alpha & gamma tocopherol partially prevent age-associated transcriptional changes and that these effects are tissue and tocopherol specific.”