Saturday, October 12, 2013

10 Easy Ways to Prevent Cancer at Home


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By Dr. Mercola

    Cancer is the disease Americans fear most, and understandably so since
it’s responsible for nearly one out of every four deaths in the US. Adding to
its stigma, cancer diagnosis and treatment are the moneymakers in this
industry – and also the focus of most government-funded cancer campaigns.

    Comparatively little is done in the way of prevention education, leaving
many feeling powerless against this potentially deadly disease – as though
all you can do is cross your fingers and hope you don’t become one of the
quickly growing cancer statistics. What a relief it should be to learn that
prevention strategies not only exist, but also are remarkably effective at
lowering your risk of most types of cancer.

Cancer Prevention: 10 Top Tips

        “More than half of all cancer deaths could be prevented by making
healthy choices like not smoking, staying at a healthy weight, eating right,
keeping active, and getting recommended screening tests.”

    This quote is taken directly from the American Cancer Society, and it
should be eye-opening and empowering if you’re not yet aware that cancer
prevention starts, first and foremost, with you and, as the featured article
explains, your home.

    1. Optimize Your Vitamin D

        If you want to slash your risk of cancer, it's essential that you
spend adequate time in the sun or a safe tanning bed, or if that’s not
possible supplement with proper amounts of vitamin D3. It’s been definitively
proven using data from more than 100 countries that the higher the solar UVB,
the lower the incidence of 15 different types of cancer, including

Bladder     Breast     Cervical     Colon     Endometrial

Esophageal     Gastric     Lung     Ovarian     Pancreatic

Rectal     Renal     Vulvar     Hodgkin's lymphoma     Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

    The most important factor is your vitamin D serum level. In order to help
prevent a wide variety of diseases and health ailments, including cancer,
your vitamin D level needs to be between 50 and 70 ng/ml year-round. Vitamin
D from sun exposure or a safe tanning bed is the BEST way to optimize your
vitamin D levels.

    Just be cautious about the length of your exposure. You only need enough
exposure to have your skin turn the lightest shade of pink. Once you reach
this point your body will not make any additional vitamin D due to its self-
regulating mechanism. Any additional exposure will only cause harm and damage
to your skin.

    If you’re taking oral vitamin D, you also need to make sure you’re taking
vitamin K2 as well, as K2 deficiency is actually what produces the symptoms
of vitamin D toxicity, which includes inappropriate calcification that can
lead to hardening of your arteries. To learn more, please see my previous
article: What You Need to Know About Vitamin K2, D and Calcium. If you take
oral vitamin D and have cancer, it would be very prudent to monitor your
vitamin D blood levels regularly.

2. Avoid Eating Excess Protein

    Most of us eat far too much protein. Consider reducing your protein
levels to one gram per kilogram of lean body weight unless you are in
competitive athletics or are pregnant. It would be unusual for most adults to
need more than 100 grams of protein and most likely need close to half that
amount. This may come as a surprise, as we’ve been told for decades how
important protein is for your health, but the truth is that excessive protein
intake can have a great impact on cancer growth.

    The mTOR pathway is short for mammalian target of rapamycin. This pathway
is ancient but relatively recently appreciated and has only been known for
less than 20 years. Odds are very high your doctor was never taught this in
medical school and isn't even aware of it. Many new cancer drugs are actually
being targeted to use this pathway. Drugs using this pathway have also been
given to animals to radically extend their lifespan. But you don't have to
use drugs to get this pathway to work for you.

    You can “biohack” your body by restricting your protein intake and
replacing the decreased protein with healthy fats; this will provide
virtually identical benefits as these dangerous and expensive drugs.

    For most people, reducing your protein levels to one gram per kilogram of
lean body weight means restricting protein intake from 35 to 75 grams.
Pregnant women and those working out extensively need about 25% more protein,
though. Further, when you reduce protein you need to replace it with other
calories, specifically high-quality fats such as avocados, butter, coconut
oil, olives, olive oil, nuts and eggs.

3. Eat Living Foods with Amazing Health Benefits

    Sprouts are a “super” food that many overlook. In addition to their
nutritional profile, sprouts are also easy to grow on your own. I started
sprouting seeds in ball jars 10 to 15 years ago. A Care2 article published
last year6 listed 10 reasons for eating sprouts, including the following. You
can see my recent article that extols their benefits. I should be providing a
more comprehensive report in the near future.

        Sprouts can contain up to 100 times more enzymes than raw fruits and
vegetables, allowing your body to extract more vitamins, minerals, amino
acids and essential fats from the foods you eat.

        Both the quality of the protein and the fiber content of beans, nuts,
seeds and grains improves when sprouted.

        The content of vitamins and essential fatty acids also increase
dramatically during the sprouting process. For example, depending on the
sprout, the nutrient content can increase as much as 30 times the original
value within just a few days of sprouting. Sunflower seed and pea sprouts
tend to top the list of all the seeds that you can sprout and are typically
each about 30 times more nutritious than organic vegetables you can even
harvest in your backyard garden.

        During sprouting, minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, bind to
protein, making them more bioavailable.

        Sprouts are the ultimate locally grown food, and can easily be grown
in your own kitchen, so you know exactly what you’re eating. And since
they’re very inexpensive, cost is no excuse for avoiding them.

4. Simplify Your Cleaning Supplies

    My top list of cancer prevention strategies has always included reducing
your exposure to environmental toxins like household chemical cleaners. While
it is very difficult to prove that a person's exposure to household cleaners
over the course of 10, 20 or 30 years is what caused their cancer diagnosis,
it is well known that commonly used household chemicals do, in fact, cause
cancer, along with other serious health effects like reproductive and
developmental problems in developing children.

    Research has found, for instance, that breast cancer risk is twice as
high among women who report the most use of cleaning products and air
fresheners, compared to those who rarely use such products. Mold and mildew
cleaners and air fresheners have shown the greatest correlation with breast
cancer. Some of the chemicals of greatest concern that you'll want to avoid

Synthetic musks     Phthalates     1,4-diclorobenzene

Terpenes             Benzene           Styrene

Phenol          Nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs)         Formaldehyde

Petroleum solvents     Butyl cellosolve     Triclosan (antibacterial)

    Fortunately, it’s simple to replace toxic commercial cleansers with safer
options. One of the best non-toxic disinfectants is plain soap and water. You
can use this for washing your hands, your body and for other household
cleaning. Another all-purpose cleaner that works great for kitchen counters,
cutting boards and bathrooms is 3% hydrogen peroxide and vinegar. You can
also keep your home very fresh and clean by making your own natural cleaning
products using items you probably already have around your home. Some more
tips for making simple and effective all-natural cleansers:

        Use baking soda mixed with apple cider vinegar to clean drains and
bathtubs, or sprinkle baking soda along with a few drops of lavender oil or
tea tree oil (which have antibacterial qualities) as a simple scrub for your
bathroom or kitchen.

        Vinegar can be used to clean almost anything in your home. Try it
mixed with liquid castile soap, essential oils and water to clean floors,
windows, bathrooms and kitchens. It can even be used as a natural fabric

        Hydrogen peroxide is safer to use than chlorine bleach for
disinfecting and whitening.

        Vodka is a disinfectant that can remove red wine stains, kill wasps
and bees and refresh upholstery (put it into a mister and simply spray on the

    For a great video on how to use these ingredients and other tips for
cleaning your home without hazardous chemicals, please review the article How
to Keep Your Home Clean Naturally. The free eBook Toxic Free also has 70
recipes for a toxic-free home that are worth checking out.

5. Use Greener Beauty Products

    When cleaning up your lifestyle you may be tempted to start with your
diet (which is a good place to start), but your personal care products are
also important to address. Putting chemicals on your skin is actually far
worse than ingesting them, because when you eat something everything must go
to your liver before entering your blood stream, providing your body an
opportunity to detoxify substances that could be harmful. When you put
chemicals on your skin however, they're absorbed straight into your
bloodstream without filtering of any kind, so the toxic chemicals from
toiletries and beauty products are largely going into your blood, lymphatic
system and then directly into your internal organs.

    There are literally thousands of chemicals used in personal care
products, and only a tiny fraction of them have ever been tested for safety.
According to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, nearly
900 of the chemicals used in cosmetics are known to be toxic. It's impossible
to list them all, but some of the most common culprits to avoid include:

   Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)             Musks                Mercury

    Paraben                1,4-Dioxane               Lead

     Phthalates, including dibutyl phthalate (DBP),

    dimethyl phthalate (DMP),      diethyl phthalate (DEP)    

     Mineral Oil,        Paraffin,        Petrolatum    

    Nano particles    Antibacterials     Hydroquinone     Formaldehyde

    When it comes to personal care products, I like to use this rule -- if
you wouldn’t eat it, don't put it on your body. Ideally, you'll want to look
for the USDA's verified Organic seal. I also highly recommend using the
Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database, where you
can look up a wide variety of products and brands to find out what they're
really made of, and whether or not they're safe. You can also make your own
personal care products, using simple all-natural ingredients that many of you
may already have in your home Our Nourishing Roots has a recipe for a
watermelon face mask that you can try, and here are a few of my

        All-natural moisturizers -- Pure emu oil is a great alternative to
facial- and body moisturizers and lotions, as is pure coconut oil. It’s a
fantastic moisturizer and a potent source of the beneficial fat lauric acid.

        All-natural acne fighter -- Rubbing just a drop of oregano oil on a
breakout can speed up the healing and prevent unsightly scarring (remember to
wash your hands thoroughly afterward).

        All-natural deodorant – Plain soap and water works fine. If you still
need further help then try a pinch of baking soda mixed into water as an
effective all-day deodorant.


God Bless Everyone & God Bless The United States of America.

Larry Nelson
42 S. Sherwood Dr.
Belton, Tx. 76513

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Testing Your Breath May Reveal Gut Bacteria Linked to Obesity!


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           Continued From Last Post

The Bottom Line...

    According to Masterjohn, to interpret the featured study “as an indictment of red meat makes no sense.”

        “Even if physiological levels of TMAO contribute to heart disease in humans (which is a big 'if' at this point) and even if red meat were to raise TMAO substantially more than most other foods (which appears to be false), it wouldn’t in any way whatsoever follow that eating red meat causes heart disease. The biological effects of a food cannot possibly be reduced to one of the biological effects of one of the food’s components. Believing such a thing would require believing not only that the particular component has no other relevant biological effects, but that there are no relevant biological effects of any of the other tens of thousands of components of that food

        ...If the carnitine in red meat were promoting atherosclerosis through its conversion to TMAO, however, then red meat should be no more dangerous than potatoes and carrots and the real killer should be seafood. How likely is this to be true?”

    Indeed... Countless studies have shown the health benefits associated with a seafood-rich diet, including its value for prevention of heart disease. Personally, I believe the best option is not to avoid these potentially beneficial substances in your diet but to optimize your gut bacteria so it favors health-promoting, rather than disease-causing, processes.

Testing Your Breath May Reveal Gut Bacteria Linked to Obesity

    Another area where gut bacteria are making headlines is related to your weight. One study last month revealed that as much as 20 percent of the substantial weight loss achieved from gastric bypass, a popular weight loss surgery, is actually due to shifts in the balance of bacteria in your digestive tract.13

    Separate research has also revealed that a breath test of the gases given off by your gut bacteria may help predict your likelihood of becoming obese. The study found that people with high levels of hydrogen and methane in their breath are more likely to have a higher body-mass index (BMI) and proportion of body fat.14 This, the researchers believe, may be because the related gut bacteria influence your body’s ability to extract calories from food, leading to weight gain.

    Previous research has also shown

 that lean people tend to have higher amounts of various healthy bacteria compared to obese people. For example, one 2011 study found that daily intake of a specific form of lactic acid bacteria could help prevent obesity and reduce low-level inflammation.15 Taken together, the research adds to the growing knowledge that nurturing the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut is likely to have significant benefits to your health and may be essential for:

        Protection against over-growth of other microorganisms that could cause disease
        Digestion of food and absorption of nutrients and certain carbohydrates
        Producing vitamins, absorbing minerals and eliminating toxins
        Preventing allergies
        Maintaining natural defenses

    Numerous studies have also shown that your gut flora plays a role in:

        Mood, psychological health, and behavior
        Celiac disease
        Weight gain and obesity
        Metabolic syndrome

Your Gut Flora is Constantly Under Attack

    Your gut bacteria are vulnerable to your diet and lifestyle. If you eat a lot of sugar, refined grains, GMOs and processed foods, for instance, your gut bacteria are going to be compromised because processed foods in general will destroy healthy microflora and feed bad bacteria and yeast. Your gut bacteria are also very sensitive to:

        Chlorinated water
        Antibacterial soap
        Agricultural chemicals

    Because of this, you need to avoid processed, refined foods in your diet (this is essential for heart disease prevention, too) and regularly reseed your gut with good bacteria by taking a high-quality probiotic supplement or eating non-pasteurized, traditionally fermented foods such as:

        Fermented vegetables
        Lassi (an Indian yoghurt drink, traditionally enjoyed before dinner)
        Fermented milk, such as kefir
        Natto (fermented soy)

    One of the reasons why fermented foods are so beneficial is because they contain lactic acid bacteria as well as a wide variety of other beneficial bacteria. Also, if fermented with a probiotics starter culture, the amount of healthy bacteria in a serving of fermented vegetables can far exceed the amount you’ll find in commercial probiotics supplements, making it a very cost effective alternative. Ideally, you want to eat a variety of fermented foods to maximize the types of bacteria you’re consuming.

Nurturing Your Gut Flora is One of the Foundations of Optimal Health

    Mounting research indicates the bacterial colonies residing in your gut may play key roles in the development of cancer, asthma, allergies, obesity, diabetes, autoimmune diseases and even brain, behavioral and emotional problems like ADHD, autism and depression. The heart disease connection is also now emerging, as discussed, although I’d hesitate to draw any conclusions from it as of yet.

    Overall, I believe it would be unwise to try to eliminate foods just because they’re known to raise TMAO, as they’re all healthy and appear to include everything from meats to vegetables and seafood It’s far more likely that maintaining a healthy gut flora is paramount to prevent heart disease, and if you’re going to eliminate a food to protect your beneficial gut bacteria, it would be processed foods, not fresh whole foods of any kind.

    Another confounding factor not addressed is the fact that meat from confined animal feeding operations (CAFO’s) are a source of hidden antibiotics, which wreak havoc on your gut bacteria. So that too may have played a role. This is reason alone to make sure you only buy organically raised grass-fed meats, as they’re not allowed to use antibiotics as growth promoters.

    Previous research has shown that around age 60, there is a significant drop in the number of bacteria in your gut. According to Dr. Sandra McFarlane from the microbiology and gut biology group at the University of Dundee, people over 60 typically have about 1,000-fold less "friendly" bacteria in their guts compared to younger adults, and increased levels of disease-causing microbes.16 What this means is that it’s incredibly important to actively nurture your gut flora health, especially as you get older.

    Eating fermented foods should be your primary strategy, but if you don't enjoy the taste of fermented foods, taking a probiotic supplement is definitely advised. However, before you give up on fermented foods, it is best to start with small amounts like half a teaspoon and use them as a condiment integrated with your food, similar to a salad dressing. If you still don't want to eat them, then it is important to note that while I do not generally advocate taking a lot of supplements, a high-quality probiotic is an exception. I recommend looking for a probiotic supplement that fulfills the following criteria, to ensure quality and efficacy:

        The bacteria strains in the product must be able to survive your stomach acid and bile, so that they reach your intestines alive in adequate numbers
        The bacteria strains must have health-promoting features
        The probiotic activity must be guaranteed throughout the entire production process, storage period and shelf life of the product

    Through my years of clinical practice, I've found that no single probiotic supplement works for everyone. However, more people seem to respond favorably to Lactobacillus sporogenes than any other probiotic, so when in doubt, that's a great place to start.

Thank You Dr. Mercola

God Bless Everyone & God Bless The United States of America.

Larry Nelson
42 S. Sherwood Dr.
Belton, Tx. 76513

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Does Seafood Produces More TMAO than Any Other Food, Including Beef?


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 Previous Research Shows Seafood Produces More TMAO than 

Any Other Food, Including Beef

    The 1999 study did show however, one food group that stood out as a major
source of TMAO, and that was seafood. Virtually all fish and invertebrates,
with few exceptions (including trout and cockles) produced statistically
significant more TMAO than the “light breakfast” control alone. And,
according to Masterjohn’s own statistical test, all invertebrates except
clams and cockles, and all fish except tuna, trout, plaice, and roe produced
significantly more TMAO than beef. He writes:

        “The single 'representative female omnivore' from the [2013] Nature
Medicine paper excreted similar amounts of TMAO in her urine as the six
subjects from the 1999 study after consuming red meat, suggesting that, had
they measured the response to seafood, the authors of the Nature Medicine
paper would also have found much greater excretion of TMAO after consumption
of seafood than after consumption of red meat.

        The difference between seafoods and red meat in the 1999 paper is
like the difference between night and day. To take the most extreme example,
halibut generated over 107 times as much TMAO as red meat. It seems obvious
from this study that if any foods should be singled out for the production of
TMAO, it should be seafoods. Yet the Nature Medicine paper makes no mention
of fish and the New York Times article only mentions fish to point out that
it has less carnitine than red meat (and thus, by inference, will generate
less TMAO, though that is clearly not the case, presumably because seafood
tends to be contaminated with trimethylamine or TMAO itself...)

        If we are to single out red meat as a source of TMAO, we should be
able to identify other foods with which it should be replaced that generate
less TMAO. Yet this 1999 study, which had a small sample size but tested an
expansive number of foods, found that there basically are no other foods that
generate meaningfully less TMAO than red meat.”

Axing Beef to Prevent Heart Disease Looks Like Another Red Herring...

    Chris Kresser L.Ac has also weighed in on this issue, comparing the
hypothesis that red meat causes heart disease via TMAO to the patently false
notion that dietary cholesterol and saturated fat cause heart disease by
raising serum cholesterol. Kresser lists three reasons for not taking the
featured study at face value:

        Inconsistent epidemiological evidence
        “Healthy user” bias, and
        Inconclusive and insufficient evidence on the role of TMAO in heart

        “...even if Paleo meat eaters have higher TMAO levels than vegans and
vegetarians, we still don’t have evidence proving a causal relationship
between TMAO and cardiovascular disease,” he writes. “Once again, the
supposed link between cholesterol and saturated fat and heart disease should
serve as a reminder not to jump to hasty conclusions that unnecessarily
deprive people of nutrient-dense, healthy foods. It is virtually impossible
to control for all of the possible confounding factors.”

Should You Avoid L-Carnitine and Choline-Rich Foods and Supplements?

    Masterjohn offers an in-depth critique of the featured study’s data in
his recent Weston A. Price article,10 so for more information I recommend
reading it in its entirety. For example, he points out that the study does
not include any data for eating steak alone (the steak was consumed with a
carnitine supplement); the data also does not indicate if TMAO differences
are due to a single outlier or a fundamental gender difference, or if the
antibiotic treatment is a confounding factor as none of the vegans were given
antibiotics. According to Masterjohn:

        “There is no data in this paper showing that TMAO increases in

response to steak alone in anyone.”

    At this time, more investigation is still needed to support the
assumption that red meat and other animal foods, along with supplements
containing L-carnitine, lecithin or choline should be avoided. What’s more,
these substances occur naturally in a wide range of foods, making it nearly
impossible, and likely inadvisable, to avoid them entirely.

    In terms of L-carnitine, an omnivorous diet provides 20 to 200 mg/day,
compared to a strict vegetarian diet, which would add about 1 mg/day.11 But
even non-dairy infant formulas are sometimes fortified with L-carnitine, and
the substance is also found in seafood, chicken breast, avocado and cheese
(although in far lower amounts than are found in red meats, especially beef).

It’s also important to realize that both L-carnitine and choline are
essential nutrients your body needs. Choline, for instance, is linked to
beneficial epigenetic changes in fetuses that likely last into adulthood,
while L-carnitine has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity in type 2

    Masterjohn also points out that while there were significant differences
in the intestinal bacterial strains between omnivores and vegans, which might
account for why TMAO levels were 45 percent higher in the meat eaters,
intestinal flora may not be the sole answer. He writes:

        “While it is possible that intestinal flora accounts for the
difference, it is disappointing that the authors did not consider other
possibilities, such as differences in the activity of the enzyme that
converts trimethylamine to TMAO. For example, vitamin B2 is the main cofactor
for the enzyme, and vegans are three times as likely to be deficient in
vitamin B2 as vegetarians and omnivores.

        ...While antibiotics wipe out TMAO levels in humans and mice, showing
that intestinal bacteria are necessary for its formation, the authors provide
no clear evidence that the specific differences in intestinal bacteria
between vegetarians and vegans on the one hand and meat-eaters on the other
cause the observed difference in TMAO levels. It is unclear whether the 45
percent higher TMAO levels in meat-eaters represents something that we should
regard as 'unhealthy.' As I pointed out above, for all we know it could be
due to riboflavin (vitamin B2) deficiency among the vegans.”

The Link Between Whole Grains and Gut Bacteria that Drive TMAO Production

    Jeff Leach with the Human Food Project has also weighed in on the
featured study. His article is well worth reading in its entirety as well. He
expounds on many of the same issues as Masterjohn and Kresser, but also
focuses much of his discussion on the role of gut bacteria in the conversion
of carnitine to TMAO. He writes,

        “If we assume for the moment that TMAO can accelerate
atherosclerosis, then the observation that enriched levels of Prevotella are
associated with higher levels in of TMAO become more interesting – especially
as enrichment of this group of bacteria seems to occur in vegans and
vegetarians as well as omnivores. So what causes enrichment of Prevotella?

        In a paper published in 2010, Italian researchers found that rural
African kids in Burkina Faso had super high levels of Prevotella, while a
similar aged group of kids in suburban Italy had none.The striking dietary
difference between the kids in Burkina Faso and the Italian kids was whole
grain consumption... whole grains made up >50% of the daily calories in this
[African] village... In contrast, the Italian kids got ~25% of their daily
calories from highly processed bread, biscuits, pasta, and rice... All in
all, a much more diverse diet, though apparently devoid of whole grains but
high in processed foods. As mentioned, the Italian kids had no traceable
amounts of Prevotella in their stool samples...

        In the Burkina Faso paper, the researchers attributed the high levels
of Prevotella to grain-based carbohydrates... it doesn’t appear that dietary
fiber in general is driving enrichment of Prevotella... So, it appears
somehow specific to the starch in grains or the dietary fiber in grains.”


God Bless Everyone & God Bless The United States of America.

Larry Nelson
42 S. Sherwood Dr.
Belton, Tx. 76513

Monday, October 7, 2013

Will Eating Meat Really Increase Your Risk of Heart Disease?



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By Dr. Mercola

    Nearly 100 trillion bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microorganisms compose your body’s microflora, and it’s becoming increasingly clear that these tiny organisms play a major role in your health.

    Gut microbes are particularly prominent in the news lately, and one of the most talked-about studies suggests bacteria in your gut may play a role in your risk of heart disease through a surprising mechanism: the breakdown of a widely consumed compound in protein known as L-carnitine.

    As a result, the media has mounted a virtual campaign warning that red meat eaters may be at higher risk of heart disease. But does the research really back up that claim? Some nutritional experts disagree, pointing out the many weaknesses in the study, and why giving up meat to prevent heart disease may be premature, if not downright wrong.

    This 6 person study may be one of the worst and most publicized since last year's media attack stating eggs were as bad for you as smoking.

Microflora Composition--A New Explanation for the Link Between Red Meat and Heart Disease?

    It’s widely stated that eating red meat causes heart disease, an association that is often blamed (incorrectly) on its impact on cholesterol levels. Yet, research has repeatedly shown that the dietary cholesterol-heart disease connection is incorrect.

    So while the featured study may offer intriguing clues to the importance of gut bacteria, and how gut bacteria is influenced by your diet, it’s doubtful that this latest hypothesis linking heart disease to red meat consumption via another pathway is entirely correct.

    For example, a 2010 study from Harvard found no evidence that eating red meats leads to heart disease.

    That said, the featured study published in Nature Medicine claims to shed some light on why some people who eat red meat develop heart disease while others do not – and the reason may come down to differences in gut bacteria.

    The study, by researchers from the Cleveland Clinic, found that human gut bacteria can metabolize L-carnitine, a substance found in red meat, energy drinks and dietary supplements, and in so doing produce a byproduct called trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO). TMAO is thought to encourage fatty plaque deposits to form within arteries (atherosclerosis), and therefore, the more TMAO you have in your blood the greater your risk of heart disease might be.

    Interestingly, people with diets high in L-carnitine, i.e. meat eaters, had a gut microbe composition that was more prone to forming TMAO, while vegetarians and vegans did not. Even after consuming large amounts of L-carnitine in a steak or supplement, the vegetarians and vegans in the study did not produce significant amounts of TMAO.

    This, the authors believe, means that eating red meat alters your gut flora in a way that predisposes your body toward TMAO production, and subsequently, heart disease. This was confirmed by giving the omnivores a course of antibiotics, after which they did not produce TMAO. Stanley Hazen, MD, PhD, the study’s lead author, said in a statement:

        “The bacteria living in our digestive tracts are dictated by our long-term dietary patterns… A diet high in carnitine actually shifts our gut microbe composition to those that like carnitine, making meat eaters even more susceptible to forming TMAO and its artery-clogging effects.”

Is Red Meat Being Inaccurately Singled Out as a Heart Disease Promoter?

    The latest study is not the first to link gut bacteria to heart disease. In 2011, the same researchers, Hazen and colleagues, used data from nearly 2,000 people and showed that when the bacteria in your gut break down lecithin, a type of fat found in meat, eggs, dairy and other animal foods along with baked goods and dietary supplements, and its metabolite choline, it also leads to the creation of TMAO and, subsequently, increases your risk of heart disease.

    In response to this and the current study, many have wondered whether red meat and other animal foods, along with supplements containing L-carnitine, lecithin or choline should be avoided. Chris Masterjohn PhD, who is currently researching fat-soluble supplements at the University of Illinois, rebutted the 2011 findings stating:

        “...previous studies have shown that supplements with salts of free choline do in fact generate TMAO, but uncontaminated phosphatidylcholine, the main form of choline found in food, does not. Moreover, choline-rich foods like liver and eggs did not produce more TMAO than a control breakfast, but seafood, which is generally contaminated with some trimethylamine or TMAO, did.”

    Masterjohn also disagrees with the group’s latest findings, in which the researchers claim that carnitine in red meat contributes to heart disease via the same pathway, i.e. the creation of TMAO. According to Masterjohn, incomplete reporting of data in the paper combined with “wild runaway inferences” by the press has generated a grossly misleading picture of red meat’s impact on heart disease, while simultaneously ignoring the food group that actually generates the most TMAO.

    He points out that red meat is only one of many foods that increases TMAO when eaten, and cites data from a 1999 study that evaluated TMAO excretion following consumption of 46 different foods, which shows that red meat generated no more TMAO than fruits and vegetables. In fact, some veggies, such as peas, cauliflower and carrots generated more TMAO than beef did! Still, none of the foods generated TMAO at levels that were statistically different from the control.


God Bless Everyone & God Bless The United States of America.

Larry Nelson
42 S. Sherwood Dr.
Belton, Tx. 76513