It is easy to be confused by common statements such as “selenium does this…” or “selenium doesn’t do this…” Such statements imply that all forms of selenium are equal. Well, they’re not. To say selenium does or does not do something is very much like saying that “supplements” do or do not do something.
When Ken Babal and I discussed the health benefits of mushrooms and mushroom extracts in February, we mentioned active hexose correlated compound (AHCC). I was surprised to learn that not many people knew of AHCC’s well-researched health benefits so widely used in Japan. AHCC supports immune system health to protect against and overcome “germs” and tumors. So now, I have called upon AHCC expert and internationally recognized expert on integrative medicine, Fred Pescatore, M.D., M.P.H., to discuss AHCC in more detail.
In our October column celebrating Professor Fred A. Kummerow, Ph.D.’s 100th birthday, we discussed his early nutritional scientific achievements that have resulted in the saving of many thousands of people from premature death. We also discussed the deceitful maneuvering of data that resulted in many people believing that dietary cholesterol and saturated fat were factors in heart disease.
If you are focusing on the wrong thing, then you can’t focus on the right thing. If you were falsely told your entire life to focus on something, then you have been misled and your health may suffer. The “Great American Diet Experiment” may be nearing its final stage, now that the facts are finally allowed to reach all scientists and the public. As discussed later in this column, at least some American scientific journals are now allowing the full facts to be published rather than having the “reviewers” insist that certain true—but embarrassing to the Heart–Diet establishment—data be removed. Yes, the suppression of scientific facts that contradict or question the dogma of the controlling establishment still occurs.
We have been discussing bone and artery health with Leon Schurgers, Ph.D. In June, we discussed why vitamin K2 was essential for bone health and in July, we examined why vitamin K2 is also essential for healthy arteries. Both involve keeping calcium in the bones and out of the arteries. Even Time magazine is now reporting that calcified arteries are a major risk factor in heart disease. New research indicates that there is more to the vitamin K2 story. Let’s continue our chat with Dr. Schurgers with a discussion about vitamin K2’s role in brain health.
Last month, Leon Schurgers. Ph.D., discussed with us why vitamin K2 was essential for bone health. To the surprise of many, studies continue to show that vitamin K2 is also essential for healthy arteries. Even Time magazine is now reporting that calcified arteries are a major risk factor in heart disease. What is the connection? Let’s discuss it with Dr. Schurgers.
Medical scientists are now realizing the importance of a particular form of vitamin K, the vitamin K2 form. Yes, the general medical community, by and large, still thinks of vitamin K solely in terms of its role in blood clotting, a very important role indeed, but there may be other equally—if not more important—roles that are only recently coming to light.
Longtime readers may remember that my early longevity research centered on antioxidant synergism and selenium. In 1959, I was researching the possible role of selenium as “Factor 3” proposed by Drs. Klaus Swartz and Calvin Foltz in 1958, when I discovered a synergistic role of selenium and vitamin C. At that time, selenium was not known to be an essential nutrient for humans or other animals. In 1973, Rotruck and colleagues discovered that selenium was a component of an essential enzyme (1) and, in 1989, it was discovered that selenium forms the active site in the amino acid selenocysteine (2), which is now known to be the 21st amino acid specified by our genetic code. In fact, unraveling the mysteries of selenium biochemistry has altered our understanding of the genetic code. We now know that there are at least 20 active biochemicals made in humans that contain selenocysteine as their active site, but we still don’t know many of their functions.
Recently, an article published in the British Medical Journal attracted a lot of interest because it busts the myth about a decades old dogma (1). Aseem Malhotra, M.D., explained why saturated fat consumption is not a major risk for heart disease, but the common fractured foods and sugar used to replace saturated fats are indeed.