Minerals Activate Your Potential # EVOO - Blog # 90
Hello Everyone! Welcome to another Friday blog. Did you know that ~ 1/3 of our DNA codes for enzymes? Enzymes are the workers of the body - they perform many jobs. These enzymes can't do their many jobs without cofactors - vitamins and minerals. Today I want to focus on our minerals. Cofactors are like the key in the ignition - they activate an enzyme so it can perform its function appropriately. We need lots of vitamins and minerals to perform optimally - the RDI (recommended daily intake) put out by our government is based on the minimum required to prevent disease - not the optimal required for health!!! Let's delve in.
***Absence of disease does not = health***
Since the development of GMOs (genetically modified organisms) termed "Roundup-ready" plants in the 1980s - plants that can withstand glyphosate - and its agricultural use by farmers since 1974 as a weed killer - the vitamin and mineral content of our food has decreased by as much as 50%. Usage has increased 15 fold as of 2016 and has increased ever since. Americans have 20x the exposure as compared to other parts of the globe. Many countries don't allow glyphosate in order to protect their coral reefs and their agriculture workers.
When the WHO classifies glyphosate as a "probable carcinogen" and billions of $$ is being awarded in lawsuits due to causing Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma - it makes one wonder why isn't the US banning this substance!!! Yet, it is for sale on Amazon - Home Depot - and many other retailers.
Not only is the soil depleted - due to glyphosate's chelating (strongly attracts minerals/metals) properties - but since it is also an antibiotic, the microbes in the soil are severely impacted - lacking in number and diversity - and in their ability to extract minerals from the soil. Further, they are rendered unable to make crucial aromatic amino acids - so they can’t convert sunlight into nutrients. What do you think happens to our gut microbes when we eat foods contaminated with glyphosate? 🤔 What do you think happens to the microbiome of honeybees and other crucial insect species? In order to get things to grow, large amounts of nitrogen-based fertilizers are used. A plant's job is to take sunlight + CO2, put carbon into the soil and O2 into the air. Glyphosate-based herbicides prevent this from happening - the plants can't put carbon back into the soil. The soil microbes that plants rely on are killed off - further depleting the soil quality and inhibiting the plant from uptake of nutrients.
Did you know 94% of all soybeans are GMO, cotton = 96%, corn = 92%, sugar beets = 99.9%. The list of GMO foods we are consuming that have been sprayed with Roundup is substantial and includes potatoes, summer squash, papaya, canola, alfalfa, apples and many others. It is even sprayed on non-GMO products such as grains, wheat and sugar cane prior to harvest to speed dessiccation. Wheat is also sprayed with calcium propionate as a preservative while in storage. Other products stored in the same facility can be contaminated with glyphosate, such as oats. Unfortunately, glyphosate levels can be very high in oats.
Even more alarming is most of the GMO crops produced in the US are used for animal food. BTW, did you know cancer is the number one cause of death in dogs? Our sweet pets are at risk too!!! The food given to conventionally raised animals is highly contaminated with pesticide/herbicides. Then we eat them! It's almost impossible to avoid - even if you eat organic. Not only is glyphosate a problem, but this animal food is very low quality - they mix SKITTLES with cattle feed, for example. This has been going on for years but escalated in 2012 - when corn prices rose - in order to provide a cheaper carbohydrate substitute!! These animals gain lots of weight - due to metabolic syndrome - and bring more $$ since they're sold by weight. It should be no surprise that WE get metabolic syndrome when we consume them.
We need to understand that consuming food or animals contaminated with glyphosate-based herbicides (GBH) not only depletes mineral and vitamin content, but also kills off key species in our gut microbiome (GM)! We rely on our microbes to make products for us - like B vitamins, SCFA (short-chain fatty acids) that feed our enterocytes (colon cells) and enhance mitochondrial health, neurotransmitters and much more. When we damage our microbiome, we suffer deficiencies and consequences of gut dysbiosis. Once this is in our bodies it kills the beneficial species, allowing the pathogenic ones to wreak havoc. Multiple studies are demonstrating this. Studies in mice show it "induced an increase of anxiety and depression-like behaviors...significantly altered the GM composition in terms of relative abundance and phylogenic diversity of the key microbes."
Since glyphosate chelates (attracts/binds) minerals - we become both deficient and toxic at the same time. Minerals are pulled toward glyphosate - away from where they are needed - and concentrates them wherever glyphosate is in the body. When this happens, our proverbial car won't start - the key "mineral/vitamin" is missing. We experience symptoms of both deficiency and toxicity. Interestingly, there are acetobacters in raw fermented sauerkraut that can metabolize glyphosate and help us remove it from our bodies. Bacillus aryabhattai is a strain found in tea - green, black, white - capable of manipulating glyphosate herbicide residues. So there are things we can do to help our body rid this horrible toxin.
To add to the mineral, vitamin and aromatic amino acid deficiencies - we add fluoride and chlorinate our drinking water!!! Most of us then filter some of the contaminates - which removes minerals. When we look at history, humans got their minerals from drinking water that was flowing over rocks. We need to be aware of this and replenish minerals and electrolytes in our filtered water. To make the situation even worse, many people are taking proton pump inhibitors (antacids). If your stomach is not acidic enough, we can’t separate the minerals from the proteins we consume - so they are not bioavailable to act as cofactors!!!
It is also worth noting that mineral ion concentrations are intracellular - inside the cell - so serum measurements are NOT a good way to tell if you are deficient - for example, magnesium - less than 1% is in serum. Minerals are heavily dependent on each other - and when out of balance can negatively affect the others. Let's look at a some of the most important minerals - and their functions as cofactors:
- Magnesium - (Mg++) - This mineral is crucial for health. It is the 2nd most abundant intracellular ion after potassium and involved in > 600 enzymatic reactions in humans. More than 60% of Americans are deficient - It is required for ATP production, protein synthesis, synthesis of DNA and RNA, glutathione production (powerful antioxidant), activation of vitamin D, brain and neurological health, heart and cardiovascular health, blood pressure and blood glucose control, gastrointestinal, bone, muscle and immune system health and function. Magnesium ions influence the potential at the cell membrane - (voltage or electrical charge). Deficiencies present across these systems include reduced energy production, preeclampsia, migraine, depression, coronary artery disease, asthma, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, constipation, osteoporosis and many others. Soil depletion of magnesium is estimated at roughly 30%, with food processing depleting 80-90%. Further, many drugs deplete Mg++ such as diuretics and proton pump inhibitors - as well as alcohol and high carbohydrate diet - which depletes nutrients.
- Zinc - (Zn++) is a cofactor for >300 enzymes and > 1,000 enzymatic reactions. 90% is found in muscles and bones. It is a powerful antioxidant that inhibits oxidative stress and cytokine storm. It works with the immune system to maintain numbers of lymphocytes, T-cells and is protective for cardiovascular, liver, muscles, pancreas, prostate, expression of some genes, immune and respiratory systems. When we are deficient, we have more inflammation - as it is very involved in removing ROS (reactive oxygen species). We don't have a way to store much of this ion, so we must consume it daily in our food. Eating foods high in phytates deplete Zn++. Check out blog # 80. High levels from supplementation can inhibit iron absorption - so balance is key.
- Copper (Cu) this is an essential trace mineral and cofactor for "cuproenzymes" - roughly 40% of older adults are deficient - copper is involved in iron metabolism, wound healing and connective tissue synthesis, neurotransmitter synthesis, energy production, brain development, pigmentation, neuropeptide activation and more - ions can fluctuate between reduced (Cu I) and oxidized (Cu II) states, allowing it to perform as a "catalytic cofactor in the redox chemistry of enzymes, mitochondrial respiration, iron absorption, free radical scavenging and elastin cross-linking." It participates in crucial biological functions related to growth and development as well as antioxidant activity primarily superoxide dismutases.
- Iron (Fe++) - there are 2 forms - heme iron and non-heme iron. Heme iron is what carries O2 in the blood in the form of hemoglobin. Non-heme iron is stored in the form of ferritin. Deficiency is estimated to be 38.6% - serum ferritin levels decline as anemia worsens - except with inflammation (such as infectious disease) where they can rise. Iron is important in muscle metabolism and connective tissue synthesis, neurological development, cellular function and synthesis of certain hormones - testosterone, gonadotropin-releasing hormone, sperm morphology and fertility. However, iron plays 2 roles in cancer: 1) tumor initiator - by enhancing production of DNA-damaging oxygen radicals causing mutations. 2) essential growth factor - high demand in tumors. Breast cancers utilize both roles.
- Selenium (Se++) - an essential trace mineral - enzymes that utilize Se are selenoproteins effective as antioxidant scavengers against ROS (reactive oxygen species) such as glutathione peroxidase - Se is also involved in activation of thyroid hormone. Deficiency is demonstrated in cardiovascular disease, muscle degeneration, infertility, cognitive decline.
- Manganese (Mn) - essential trace mineral severely depleted in plants due to glyphosate - Deficiency impacts gut dysbiosis, autism, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease, depression, anxiety, mitochondrial dysfunction, sperm motility, fertility, osteoporosis and osteoarthritis (due to its role in chondroitin sulfate synthesis). Lactobacillus species critical in treating these conditions are dependent on Mn. When depleted, it allows Salmonella (resistant to glyphosate toxicity) to overgrow. Glyphosate disrupts bile acids that help control pathogens.
- Calcium (Ca++) - the most abundant mineral - important for muscle contraction, mediates blood vessel dilation and contraction, clotting of blood, hormonal secretion as well as nerve transmission - 98% is stored in bones - 99% is stored as calcium hydroxyapatite in teeth and bones. The bones and teeth are storage depots of calcium to be used throughout the body wherever it needs to go. Ca is the body's band aid - it can get deposited in areas of inflammation - think calcium deposit on your heel forming a spur, or getting deposited on your coronary artery, for example. Of note - there's an inverse relationship between intake of calcium and absorption. This is important! Vitamin D is required for Ca absorption.
- HP-EVOO - high polyphenol extra virgin olive oil - enhances absorption of fat-soluble vitamins: [A, D, E, K]. EVOO also provides some vitamins E, K. Hydroxytyrosol (EVOO polyphenol) increases absorption of vitamin C and enhances its antioxidant effects. Oleuropein (EVOO polyphenol) induces synthesis of Cytochrome P450 enzymes that are involved in detoxification of xenobiotics (foreign substances) toxins and heavy metals, medications, etc. These enzymes are very disrupted with glyphosate exposure. Further, EVOO helps to heal the gut lining and enhance beneficial microbes to correct dysbiosis. EVOO goes a long way in balancing and healing the body, has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties to prevent cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, metabolic syndrome and T2D (type 2 diabetes), NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease), cardiovascular disease and many other health maladies.