Monthly Archives: December 2008

Healthy Hair, Skin and Nails

Looking to strengthen your hair skin and nails and decrease the possibility of breakage. New ingredients in Irwin Naturals Hair, Skin and Nails formula can do just that.  The select vitamins and herbal extracts provide the body with the raw materials to repair damaged hair, prevent nails from breaking and rejuvenate skin cells.  The formulas precise blend and liquid delivery create noticeable results within weeks.


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Kre-Alkalyn, the Best Form of Creatine you Can Take

Kre-Alkalyn is a PH buffered form of creatine which is extremely stable even when mixed with a liquid.  Most creatine converts to creatinine when mixed with a liquid.  This conversion can take place very quickly resulting in only a fraction of the creatine dose actually reaching the muscle.  Creatinine is typically responsible for the side effects associated with creatine such as cramping, and bloating.

Kre-Alkalyn is the only creatine in the world with a PH above 12 because its molecules are synthesized with buffering agents using a patented manufacturing process.  As a result, it passes intact to the bloodstream and reaches the muscle cells at full strength.  Because of its greater bioavailability Kre-Alkalyn typically is taken in 1.5 to 2 gram doses rather than the traditional 5 gram dosing.  Don’t be fooled by the lower doses this is by far the most effective creatine product you will try and it is typically inexpensive as well.

Beta-Alanine : More Endurance, More Strength, More Muscle

Anybody who spends time in the gym knows what muscle failure feels like. At a certain point the muscle becomes overloaded and is unable to continue to contract. This reaction in our bodies is known as metabolic acidosis which is caused by the breakdown of ATP for energy production. Metabolic acidosis is the production of hydrogen ions that occurs by intense muscle contraction which causes blood and muscle ph to drop. The accumulation of hydrogen ions and decrease in ph is directly linked to muscle fatigue and what we know as muscle failure.

Carnosine which is synthesized from Beta Alanine and Histidine is known to buffer hydrogen ions resulting in a positive impact on exercise performance. Research has shown that supplementing with 3.2 grams per day of Beta Alanine can increase muscle carnosine stores by as much as 66%. This elevation in carnosine has been shown to improve athletic performance. Studies have shown oral supplementation of Beta Alanine for 2-4 weeks has improved a range of athletic tests from sprint cycling to leg extensions by 8-12%.

The bottom line is Beta Alanine can increase strength and power.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants are involved in the prevention of cellular damage – which can lead to cancer, premature aging, and a variety of diseases. The scientific community has begun to unveil some of the mystery surrounding antioxidants and as information is revealed the case for antioxidants becomes stronger and stronger.

Athletes have an interest because of health concerns and the prospect of enhanced performance and/or recovery from exercise. The general public stands to benefit from the broad health benefits that antioxidants provide.

Antioxidants are molecules which can safely interact with free radicals and terminate the chain reaction before vital molecules are damaged. Although there are several enzyme systems within the body that scavenge free radicals, the principle micronutrient (vitamin) antioxidants are vitamin E, beta-carotene, and vitamin C. Additionally, selenium, a trace metal that is required for proper function of one of the body’s antioxidant enzyme systems, is sometimes included in this category. The body cannot manufacture these micronutrients so they must be supplied in the diet.

Antioxidants and Exercise Recovery

It is well known that vitamin deficiencies can create difficulties in training and recovery. Most data suggest that increased intake of vitamin E is protective against exercise induced oxidative damage. It is hypothesized that vitamin E is also involved in the recovery process following exercise. Currently, the amount of vitamin E needed to produce these effects is unknown.

Antioxidants to Slow the Aging Process

One of the primary theories on aging revolves around antioxidants or the lack of them. Free radicals build up in the body from sources such as poor diet, pollutants, stress, and exercise. Without a significant amount of antioxidants free radicals start to damage the structure and integrity of cell membranes within the body. As the cells are damaged they break down which accelerates the aging process. By consuming significant amounts of fruits, vegetables, vitamins and minerals you can help minimize this process. Antioxidants in these compounds act to stabilize free radicals preventing damage to the body’s cells.

An excellent source of antioxidants is the new super green foods powders that have recently shown up on supplement store shelves.

Ageless Skin

Use hyaluronic acid to moisturize, nourish and smooth your complexion.

Hyaluronic acid is a natural compound in the body that helps keep skin soft and youthful. Unfortunately this compound usually depletes with age, but by taking a supplemental form of it much more can be maintained. Hyaluronic acid is a gelatin like substance that acts as a lubricant in the body by being able to retain moisture. In the skin it helps to moisturize and rejuvenate and nourish the skin cells.

Leucine the Anabolic, Fat Burning Amino Acid

Leucine is a potent amino acid that has been shown in research to have significant anabolic and anti catabolic properties. It helps build muscle and now a new study reveals leucine may be a potent metabolic enhancer as well. This means it may also help burn bodyfat.

Mice fed a high fat diet who where given twice their normal dietary intake of leucine decreased their body fat by 25%. They also decreased total cholesterol and decreased the bad LDL cholesterol.

There is a growing body of research supporting leucine’s positive impact on enhancing performance and muscle growth. Now more research such as this is revealing L-Leucine’s impacting metabolic effects. The bottom line is that this amino can help burn fat and build muscle.

L-Carnitine

NOW Foods L-Carnitine

Carnitine is a nutrient responsible for the transport of long-chain fatty acids into the energy-producing centers of the cells (known as the mitochondria). In other words, carnitine helps the body convert fatty acids into energy, which is used primarily for muscular activities throughout the body. The body produces carnitine in the liver and kidneys and stores it in the skeletal muscles, heart, brain, and sperm.

Heart Disease

Studies suggest that people who take L-carnitine supplements soon after suffering a heart attack may be less likely to suffer a subsequent heart attack, die of heart disease, experience chest pain and abnormal heart rhythms, or develop congestive heart failure. (Congestive heart failure is a condition that leads to a back up of blood into the lungs and legs because the heart loses its ability to pump blood efficiently).

In addition, people with coronary artery disease who use L-carnitine along with standard medications may be able to sustain physical activity for longer periods of time.

High Cholesterol

In several studies, people who took L-carnitine supplements had a significant lowering of their total cholesterol and triglycerides, and an increase in their HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels.

Weight Loss and Athletic Performance

L-carnitine acts as a wheel barrow shuttling long chain fatty acids to the mitochondria where these fats can be burned as fuel. This can prolong energy stores allowing an individual to maintain peak performance for longer periods of time. L-carnitine also helps promote the body’s use of fat as fuel allowing for more efficient fat burning.

CLA – Conjugated Linoleic Acid

CLA has been researched for the following benefits.

A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, published in the December 2000 issue of the Journal of Nutrition found that CLA reduces fat and preserves muscle tissue. According to the research project manager, an average reduction of six pounds of body fat was found in the group that took CLA, compared to a placebo group.

The study found that approximately 3.4 grams of CLA per day is the level needed to obtain the beneficial effects of CLA on body fat.

In a separate study, CLA was found to improve insulin levels in about two-thirds of diabetic patients, and moderately reduced the blood glucose level and triglyceride levels.

Caffeine’s Effect on Athletic Performance

Besides creating a state of alertness caffeine plays an interesting roles in increasing muscle output and athletic performance. New research shows it improves reaction time and cooridination. Caffeine taken prior to exercise also causes the body to release calcium stores which play a role in increasing the force in maximal muscle contractions. This can help an athlete generate more force to push more weight and do more reps.

One side effect with caffeine is that it tends to decrease the effectiveness of creatine and arginine. To get the most out of these other supplements try to dose them at separate times. For instance if you are taking caffeine as a preworkout energy enhancer take your creatine after your workout.

Coenzyme Q10 For Heart Health

Each cell in the body needs a source of energy to survive, so cells break down sugars, fats, and amino acids to make energy. Small enclosures within cells that make this energy are called mitochondria. CoQ10 exists naturally in our mitochondria and carries electrons involved in energy metabolism. CoQ10 is essential in the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the basic energy molecule of each cell.

In the bloodstream, CoQ10 is mainly transported by lipoproteins such as LDL (low-density lipoprotein) and HDL (high-density lipoprotein). It is thought that CoQ10 is one of the first antioxidants to be depleted when LDL is subjected to oxidation. Hence, CoQ10 is an important nutrient that prevents the oxidation of lipoproteins, thus potentially reducing the risk of arteries from forming plaques and getting damaged.
In healthy individuals, CoQ10 is found in high concentrations in the heart, kidneys, and liver.

Diabetes: CoQ10 may be beneficial in diabetics. It helps improve the function of endothelial cells lining blood vessels and may slightly help with blood sugar control.

Heart Attacks: In a small trial of patients with recent myocardial infarction, CoQ10 — used in addition to aspirin and cholesterol-lowering drugs — decreased the likelihood of further cardiac events for at least one year after the heart attack. The dosage of CoQ10 used in the study was 60 mg twice daily.

Heart Failure: One study in patients with heart failure showed significant improvement in functional status, clinical symptoms, and quality of life in end stage heart failure patients who were placed on CoQ10.

Hypertension: CoQ10 may help lower blood pressure by a small amount in some people.

Cholesterol: Individuals on cholesterol medicines of the statin class such as Lipitor and others, may consider taking CoQ10 supplements since statins decrease blood CoQ10 levels.

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