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What Recommended Dietary Allowance Really Means March 5, 2012

Posted by Dr. Brady Hurst in Food, Health Articles, Healthcare.
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Optimal nutrition is key to slowing biological aging and preventing disease. This is exactly why you may want to ignore the Recommended Dietary Allowance or RDA.

You may not know this: the majority of public health education comes from the marketing departments of Fortune 500 companies.

You see a 3-second commercial for a nutritional supplement indicating it has 100% of the RDA. The consumer says, “Great! I can get everything I need in this one pill! It says it has 100% of the RDA!”

The RDA guidelines are both right and extremely wrong.

What is RDA?

The RDA guidelines, created by the FDA, defines the RDA as “the daily intake level of a nutrient that is considered to be sufficient to meet the requirements of 97–98% of healthy individuals.” This is correct, however, the language here is extremely misleading because it uses “to meet the requirements” to cover up it’s true meaning.

What the RDA really means is the minimal daily intake level of a nutrient to relieve deficiency symptoms of that nutrient.

The RDA has NOTHING to do with optimal health.

This is why you see 100% RDA on vitamin packaging at Walmart or GNC, two large companies that sells nutritional supplements but knows nothing about health. If you look at supplements the professionals offer, you will see that the amount of nutrients are hundreds even thousands of times the RDA. This is because the professionals who highly educated in nutrition know that specific amounts of nutrients are needed to achieve OPTIMAL health for individuals.

Ask Yourself: How do I Know How Much Nutrients to Take?

The answer to this questions is…it depends.

Everyone has very different nutritional needs and different amounts are needed to reach optimal levels. The easiest and most effective way is to run a NutrEval test. This test gives a very detailed analysis (and recommendations) on everything from vitamins and minerals to proteins and Omega 3 needs.

True Health Labs not only offers this test to the public but also gives a one-on-one results review at no extra charge. Learn more

Remember, optimal nutritional needs are very different from the minimal RDA. A one-a-day pill does not cut it for most people. Optimal nutrition is key to slowing biological aging and truly preventing disease.

Have you taken this test, made specific changes and seen improvements in your health? Leave a comment and tell us about it.

Dr. Brady Hurst

How to Prevent Heart Disease with Genetic Testing February 11, 2012

Posted by Dr. Brady Hurst in Heart Health / Cardiovascular Disease.
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Go Beyond Cholesterol Testing and Into Genetics

Is Cholesterol Testing A Thing of the Past?

In the past few decades, standard health care had used basic cholesterol testing as the cornerstone for the treatment of heart disease. However, more than 50 percent of those with “normal” values end up hospitalized due to a stroke or heart attack1 .

We now know cholesterol isn’t the sole problem.  What must be considered are genetic factors that influence the behavior of cholesterol. Today we have a advanced heart disease prevention test that tells us our true risk of heart disease.

Cholesterol Size Does Matter

Many studies conclude that cholesterol size and density plays a greater role in the prediction of heart disease than the total amount of cholesterol.

Think of it like this: You have 10 people who want to take a trip. They can either take 1 bus (less traffic) or each take a car. Not only do the cars create more traffic, they can also easily stop on the side of the road (cholesterol sticking to the side of an artery). What’s the size of your cholesterol?

Genetics and Heart Disease

It is true that genetics play a large role in our heart health. Genes determine how efficiently we respond to our environment, however, the key is that our environment ultimately controls our genetics with food being one of the biggest environmental influences.

Yes, this means that your risk of heart disease can weigh heavily on how well you can “genetically digest” food. There is new testing that can help determine what types of food you should eat based on your genetics. Acting on this information will greatly lower your risk of heart disease.

The APO-E Gene

The APO-E gene plays a critical role in how diet influences cholesterol behavior. To keep this simple here is a brief description of the 3 types of APO-E genes and how they respond to diet. Remember, you will fall into a combination of these categories.

APOE2

A person in this category will have the tendency toward lower LDL-Count (“bad” cholesterol even though a misnomer) and higher HDL-Count (“good”), and higher triglycerides, especially in response to dietary simple carbohydrates like grains, sugars, and high glycemic foods. This person will have a reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

Lifestyle Changes for APOE2

  • Minimize high-glycemic index foods
  • Cholesterol-lowering effect of a low saturated fat and low-cholesterol diet may be least effective for APOE2 individuals; However, MI risk may be increased with high long-chain saturated fat.
  • Moderate alcohol intake may reduce LDL-C in men (neutral in women) and increase HDL-C.
  • Dietary fiber and exercise help improve the cholesterol size and density tests.
  • Fish oils may reduce triglycerides most effectively in APOE2 individuals.
  • Oral estrogen will increase triglycerides in APOE2 individuals; trans-dermal estrogen replacement therapy may be safer for APOE2 women.

APOE3

  • Only a moderate tendency toward high LDL-count and low HDL-count.
  • Risk is intermediate between APOE2 and APOE4 for heart disease and stroke

Lifestyle Changes for APOE3 Individuals:

  • A low long-chain saturated fat and low cholesterol diet has only a moderate lipid-lowering effect in APOE3 individuals.
  • Dietary fiber, fish oils, and exercise generally improve the cholesterol profile.
  • Alcohol appears to have a neutral effect on LDL-counts.
  • Bio-idential hormone replacement therapy generally improves the lipid profiles, including post-menopausal APOE3 women.

APOE4

  • Tendency toward higher triglycerides and LDL-cholesterol and lower HDL-count.
  • Increased risk of heart disease, stroke, metabolic syndrome, obesity, and toxicity by heavy metals such as lead and mercury

Lifestyle Changes for APOE4 Individuals:

  • Reduce excess weight. Start with a 10 pound goal.
  • A low long-chain saturated fat and low cholesterol diet most effectively lowers LDL-C in APOE4 individuals.
  • Minimize high-glycemic index foods.
  • Minimize alcohol (may raise LDL-C in men and cause damage to the hippocampus (memory center) when homocyctine is high.
  • Fish oils lower triglycerides but may raise LDL-C the most in APOE4 individuals.

The Heart Disease Prevention Test

Unfortunately “basic” is the standard for our current health care system. Even though we have these powerful new heart disease tests, they remain unknown and thus unused by the majority of practitioners.

You do, however, have direct access to this powerful new heart disease blood test.

Provided by our lab, True Health Labs, the new Heart Disease Prevention Test with Genomics can play a critical part when preventing heart disease. If ordered online, one of True Health Labs’s doctors will review the test results with you for free.

Article by Dr. Brady Hurst
Clinic Director for True Health Labs

1American Heart Journal Volume 157, Number 1

3 Secret Blood Tests for Autoimmunity August 4, 2010

Posted by Dr. Brady Hurst in Autoimmunity, Lab Testing.
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Autoimmunity occurs when the immune system attacks healthy tissue. These diseases are quickly becoming a major global health problem. The top 10 that are most common in the United States are:
  1. Hashimoto’s Disease (Hypothyroidism)
  2. Graves’ Disease (Hyperthyroidism)
  3. Rheumatoid Arthritis (Joints)
  4. Lupus (Multiple tissues)
  5. Sjogren’s Syndrome (Dry Eyes, Skin, and Mouth)
  6. Celiac Disease (Gut)
  7. Psoriasis (Skin and Joints)
  8. Multiple Sclerosis (Brain Cells)
  9. Antiphospholipid Syndrome (Blood Clotting)
  10. Type 1 Diabetes (Pancreas)

Conventional diagnosis of autoimmune diseases is commonly done through a blood test that looks for antibodies against healthy cells. After these antibodies are found, conventional medicine recommends taking immune suppressive drugs and/or hormone replacement therapy for life – with risks that greatly outweigh the benefits. Functional medicine (advanced natural medicine) has powerful and natural tools that dramatically improve the lives of those with autoimmune diseases without these risks.

The reason why conventional medicine has failed with autoimmunity is because their model is not designed to look for the individual cause (or promoters) of the immune dysfunction. Two different people with Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism will have very different immune dysfunctions therefore will need different protocols. The key is to get a clear picture of the individual’s unique immune system can only be achieve through functional laboratory testing.

The Three Secrete Blood Tests

TH1 / TH2 Cytokine Test– Your white blood cells communicates with each other through proteins called cytokines. You immune system consists of mainly two systems: The first attackers (Th1 cells) and antibodies (Th2 cells). In a properly functioning immune system, the Th1 and Th2 cells should be in balance like a see-saw. When one of these systems becomes more powerful than the other, and autoimmunity can be triggered. The goal is to balance this system. Since many therapies used in natural medicine can influence this see-saw, it is critical to know which side is dominant in order to promote balance.

CD4 CD8 Ratio Panel (Immune System Analysis)– We have cells in our immune system called “helper cells” that help our white blood cells attack foreign innovators.  Other cells help turn off the immune attack (“suppressor cells”) when the fight is over. This important test it allows you and your doctor to know if a foreign innovator (bacteria, virus, food, environmental toxin, and/or heavy metals) are influencing the autoimmune attack or if the immune system is dysfunctional due to other causes like chronic stress or nutritional insufficiencies.

Vitamin D Test– Vitamin D is not actually a vitamin, it’s a hormone. A hormone that plays an extremely important role in the modulation, or balancing, of the immune system. Not only do most people suffering with autoimmune diseases have low levels of vitamin D but they also have genetic changes that keeps vitamin D from being used in the body. This means they many need to take very high doses of vitamin D in order to function properly. Since vitamin D influenced blood calcium levels it is necessary to have your vitamin D levels rechecked often until optimal levels are achieved. (The vitamin D test is also included in our Health Check Plus with Vitamin D blood test)

Lab tests can become expensive when ordered by a clinic or hospital. Many do not know that by ordering lab tests online, they only pay a fraction of the cost and save on a doctor’s visit.

“Good Treatment Starts with Great Testing”

To help you make the right choice, you may schedule a free phone consultation with one of our highly trained doctors.  We will listen to your health concerns and help determine the best lab tests for you.  Regardless of your diagnosis, the picture that these tests creates is extremely useful for anyone suffering with autoimmune diseases.