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Brain Study Shows Link Between Fructose and Overeating

A new study adds evidence that fructose (and its relative, high fructose corn syrup) may play a role in obesity, according to the Associated Press. MRI scans showed that fructose can trigger brain changes that may lead to overeating.

The results add fire to the ongoing debate of whether or not all sugars are created equal.

From the AP:

Scans showed that drinking glucose “turns off or suppresses the activity of areas of the brain that are critical for reward and desire for food,” said one study leader, Yale University endocrinologist Dr. Robert Sherwin. With fructose, “we don’t see those changes,” he said. “As a result, the desire to eat continues — it isn’t turned off.”

This isn’t the only study that makes fructose a bad actor compared to glucose. GAP client and whistleblower Renee Dufault gave a presentation a couple weeks ago at our office in Washington D.C. on the impact of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and human metabolism.

“The more fructose we eat, the faster we gain weight,” Dufault stated. She explained that people can become obese eating too much cane sugar as well as eating too much high fructose corn syrup, but that it will happen faster via HFCS consumption because it has more fructose. Check back on the FIC blog for video of her presentation!

via Brain Study Shows Link Between Fructose and Overeating – Food Integrity Campaign.

via Brain Study Shows Link Between Fructose and Overeating – Food Integrity Campaign.

Vitamin E slows aging, grows hair, prevents diabetes, improves brain function and blood flow


Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that can slow aging and help grow hair. Research has shown that vitamin E can soften the red blood cells, which increases circulation by improving blood flow. Vitamin E comes in eight forms. Four are tocopherols and four are tocotrienoils. Most Americans’ diet is rich in gamma-tocopherols while the Europeans’ is high in alpha tocopherols. Adding nuts to the diet is a great way to get more vitamin E, as nuts contain high amounts of this valuable nutrient.

Vitamin E for increasing blood flow

Cell membranes become less flexible as we get older. When the red blood cells become stiff, they have a difficulty time getting through the small capillaries. The smallest capillaries are usually too small for the red blood cells to pass through without flexing, so when they become stiff, they can’t get through at all. This causes a decrease in circulation to the extremities, and into the organs.

Within five days of adding vitamin E as gamma-tocopherols, the cell lining of the blood vessels improved as reported in the Journal of Nutrtitional Biochemistry. The study also demonstrated that vitamin E reduced a marker of oxidative stress called or MDA. In the study, men were given 500 mg of gamma-tocopherol, 60 mg of alpha-tocopherol, 170 mg of delta tocopherol, and nine mg of beta-tocopherol.

Vitamin E increases brain function

Those with Alzheimer’s disease had lower levers of vitamin E and also showed damage from lack of vitamin E. This was noted by tracing the markers alph-tocopherylquinone, and 5-nitro-gamma-tocopherol. The research concluded that a low level of vitamin E in the blood was a precursor to Alzheimer’s and dementia. This study used only alpha-tocopherol, while noting that using only this form of vitamin E could lead to increased stroke risk. Supplements with only this type of alph-tocopherol may prevent absorption or bioavailability of other forms of the nutrient. The authors of the study suggest a balance of vitamin E forms to protect the nervous system.

Regrow hair with vitamin E

Vitamin E can also help regrow hair after hair loss. The nutrient stimulates the growth of capillaries on the scalp. Vitamin E capsules can be applied to the scalp or taken as supplements. To grow hair, it’s best to apply topically and take vitamin E internally. Good effects will also be seen on the skin from adding this fat soluble nutrient.

Vitamin E helps treat diabetes

Using 1,800 IE of vitamin E per day, diabetic patients showed improvement in both their kidney function and retinal blood flow. The use of vitamin E prevented diabetic neuropathy in those with Type I diabetes. The nutrient has no effect on blood sugar level, making it a good treatment for hyperglycemia.

Food sources of vitamin E

Vitamin E can be found in many foods. Eggs raised naturally are a good source, as are nuts. Sunflower seeds are a great source of vitamin E, containing over 36 mg per 100 grams. Almonds contain 26 mg per 100 grams, and pine nuts have nine grams. Olives add 3.8 grams per 1,000 grams, which is about the same as spinach. Add a little bit of paprika or red chili powder to increase the vitamin E content. Both spices have 30 mg per 100 gram serving, which is a bit more than two milligrams per teaspoon.


Click to access 1245.full.pdf

About the author:

Talya Dagan is a health advocate and health coach, trained in nutrition and gourmet health food cuisine, writing about natural remedies for disease and nutrition and herbal medicine.

via Vitamin E slows aging, grows hair, prevents diabetes, improves brain function and blood flow.

via Vitamin E slows aging, grows hair, prevents diabetes, improves brain function and blood flow.

Reversing Alzheimer’s

Is this possible ? draw your own conclusions

According to research Alzheimer’s is now to be looked upon as a form of Diabetes of the brain. They are now beginning to classify it as Type III Diabetes.

Type I diabetes is a condition in which the insulin producing cells of the pancreas are damaged and do not produce enough or any insulin whatsoever(usually people are born this way and so it is by default called Juvenile Diabetes).

Type II diabetes is the condition where the pancreas produces sufficient insulin but the cells of the body have become insensitive to it and do not respond. This condition is usually caused by excessive sugar/starch in the diet of the victims.

Type III diabetes/alzheimers then is the condition of insulin insensitivity of the brain. That is, the insulin receptor sites on neurons are not functioning correctly and cannot adsorb glucose properly and so Alzheimer’s is a disease of the energy depletion of the brain that will ultimately result in brain death unless aggressive intervention is pursued!
Neurons, unlike every other cell, lack the ability to store energy and so any interruption in energy supply quickly results in damage. A neuron at best has on hand merely a two or three minute supply of glucose. Neurons cannot be regenerated after about the age of two, so any brain cell death is tragically not reversible.

It is widely known that the only sugar a neuron is capable of using for energy is glucose, but what is not widely known is that there are two other fuel sources that neurons can utilize without depending upon the insulin response. They are the amino acid l-glutamine, and ketones.

An excellent source of dietary ketones is coconut oil, and in fact there appear to be many claims of reversing alzheimer’s disease using coconut oil. A Doctor, Mary Newport, from Florida, is among these claimants and is currently writing a book about how this food helped her husband.

L-glutamine is an amino acid that the brain can also use for fuel and is readily available in capsule and bulk form supplements. It is brain fuel and also enhances brain function by removing ammonia(ever had foggy thinking?), and is the precursor to two key neurotransmitters.

Although neither is a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease(how do you restore damaged insulin receptor sites is still a mystery, if indeed it is even possible) they should both be able to reverse the symptoms if incorporated into the diet by supplying brain energy through another metabolic pathway. Simply maintaining a high protein diet will increase the amount of glutamine in the body.

In theory, if you were to provide the victim with adequate calories( replacing 2,000 calories of glucose) using ketones and glutamine, Alzheimer’s would halt and restoration of brain function would be fully complete to the exclusion of permanent damage already done to it. And so an early response will limit damage, the earlier the better, best yet to stop eating sugars,rice, potatoes, grain products, and eat only healthy foods before you develop Alzheimer’s?

Avoiding a diet high in both complex and simple carbohydrates will prevent type II and III diabetes. But there are also two natural substances that the consumption of which improves insulin sensitivity once the damage has already been achieved.

R-lipoid acid
Both of these substances are claimed to enhance insulin sensitivity, each by 30%.

With these weapons in your arsenal you should be able to greatly mediate, reverse, or avoid deterioration.

Coconut oil to supply ketones as an alternate fuel for the brain. Supplement with l-glutamine also as another non- insulin dependant energy source. Consume some vinegar daily(or consume a serving of alcohol if the liver is functioning well), and start supplementation of R-lipoic acid to enhance the brains insulin response, and increase the adsorption of glucose by the brain.

It is interesting that it is suggested that the insulin insensitivity of the brain in Alzheimer’s is the result of brain inflammation. If this is true, and it makes complete sense, then the receptor sites are inhibited(the shape has been altered as to be non-functional) as a result of the chemical environment of inflammation, then if you remove the inflammation the function( shape/functionality) of the receptors may be restored, and the disease may be cured? Glutamine absolutely reduces brain inflammation by neutralizing ammonia. If the ammonia build up is the primary cause, then the cure may be very simple and natural.

And it does appear that there is a strong correlation between elevated ammonia levels in the victims of Alzheimer’s. One theory is suggesting that a bacteria migrated to the brain is the cause for this. In any event, the strong anti microbial action of coconut oil, combined with the ammonia neutralizing effect of glutamine seems a very promising and possible total solution.

velis et remis


via Reversing Alzheimer’s | Energy Medicine and Health.

via Reversing Alzheimer’s | Energy Medicine and Health.

Scientific evidence that you probably don’t have free will

Humans have debated the issue of free will for millennia. But over the past several years, while the philosophers continue to argue about the metaphysical underpinnings of human choice, an increasing number of neuroscientists have started to tackle the issue head on — quite literally. And some of them believe that their experiments reveal that our subjective experience of freedom may be nothing more than an illusion. Here’s why you probably don’t have free will.

Indeed, historically speaking, philosophers have had plenty to say on the matter. Their ruminations have given rise to such considerations as cosmological determinism (the notion that everything proceeds over the course of time in a predictable way, making free will impossible), indeterminism (the idea that the universe and our actions within it are random, also making free will impossible), and cosmological libertarianism/compatibilism (the suggestion that free will is logically compatible with deterministic views of the universe).

Now, while these lines of inquiry are clearly important, one cannot help but feel that they’re also terribly unhelpful and inadequate. What the debate needs is some actual science — something a bit more…testable.

And indeed, this is starting to happen. As the early results of scientific brain experiments are showing, our minds appear to be making decisions before we’re actually aware of them — and at times by a significant degree. It’s a disturbing observation that has led some neuroscientists to conclude that we’re less in control of our choices than we think — at least as far as some basic movements and tasks are concerned.

At the same time, however, not everyone is convinced. It may be a while before we can truly prove that free will is an illusion.


Neuroscientists first became aware that something curious was going on in the brain back in the mid 1960s.

German scientists Hans Helmut Kornhuber and Lüder Deecke discovered a phenomenon they dubbed “bereitschaftspotential” (BP) — a term that translates to “readiness potential.” Their discovery, that the brain enters into a special state immediately prior to conscious awareness, set off an entirely new subfield.

After asking their subjects to move their fingers (what were self-initiated movements), Kornhuber and Deecke’s electroencephalogram (EEG) scans showed a slow negative potential shift in the activity of the motor cortex just slightly prior to the voluntary movement. They had no choice but to conclude that the unconscious mind was initiating a freely voluntary act — a wholly unexpected and counterintuitive observation.

Needless to say it was a discovery that greatly upset the scientific community who, since the days of Freud, had (mostly) adopted a strictly deterministic view of human decision making. Most scientists casually ignored it.

But subsequent experiments by Benjamin Libet in the 1980s reinforced the pioneering work of Kornhuber and Deecke. Similarly, Libet had his participants move their fingers, but this time while watching a clock with a dot circling around it. His data showed that the readiness potential started about 0.35 seconds earlier than participants’ reported conscious awareness.

He concluded that we have no free will as far as the initiation of our movements are concerned, but that we had a kind of cognitive “veto” to prevent the movement at the last moment; we can’t start it, but we can stop it.

From a neurological perspective, Libet and others attributed the effect to the SMA/pre-SMA and the anterior cingulate motor areas of the brain — an area that allows us to focus on self-initiated actions and execute self-instigated movements.

Modern tools show the same thing

More recently, neuroscientists have used more advanced technologies to study this phenomenon, namely fMRIs and implanted electrodes. But if anything, these new experiments show the BP effect is even more pronounced than previously thought

For example, a study by John-Dylan Haynes in 2008 showed a similar effect to the one revealed by Libet. After putting participants into an fMRI scanner, he told them to press a button with either their right or left index fingers at their leisure, but that they had to remember the letter that was showing on the screen at the precise moment they were committed to their movement.

The results were shocking. Haynes’s data showed that the BP occurred one entire second prior to conscious awareness — and at other times as much as ten seconds. Following the publication of his paper, he told Nature News:

The first thought we had was ‘we have to check if this is real.’ We came up with more sanity checks than I’ve ever seen in any other study before.

The cognitive delay, he argued, was likely due to the operation of a network of high-level control areas that were preparing for an upcoming decision long before it entered into conscious awareness. Basically, the brain starts to unconsciously churn in preparation of a decision, and once a set of conditions are met, awareness kicks in, and the movement is made.

In another study, neuroscientist Itzhak Fried put aside the fMRI scanner in favor of digging directly into the brain (so to speak). To that end, he implanted electrodes into the brains of participants in order to record the status of individual neurons — a procedure that gave him an incredibly precise sense of what was going on inside the brain as decisions were being made.

His experiment showed that the neurons lit up with activity as much as 1.5 seconds before the participant made a conscious decision to press a button. And with about 700 milliseconds to go, Fried and his team could predict the timing of decisions with nearly 80% accuracy. In some scenarios, he had as much as 90% predictive accuracy.

Different experiment, similar result.

Fried surmised that volition arises after a change in internally generated fire rates of neuronal assemblies cross a threshold — and that the medial frontal cortex can signal these decisions before a person is aware of them.

“At some point, things that are predetermined are admitted into consciousness,” he told Nature, suggesting that the conscious will might be added on to a decision at a later stage.

And in yet another study, this one by Stefan Bode, his detailed fMRI experiments showed that it was possible to actually decode the outcome of free decisions for several seconds prior to it reaching conscious awareness.

Specifically, he discovered that activity patterns in the anterior frontopolar cortex (BA 10) were temporally the first to carry information related to decision-making, thus making it a prime candidate region for the unconscious generation of free decisions. His study put much of the concern about the integrity of previous experiments to rest.

The critics

But not everyone agrees with the conclusions of these findings. Free will, the skeptics argue, is far from debunked.

Back in 2010, W. R. Klemm published an analysis in which he complained about the ways in which the data was being interpreted, and what he saw as grossly oversimplified experimentation.


Others have criticized the timing judgements, arguing about the short timeframes between action and movement, and how attention to aspects of timing were likely creating distortions in the data.


It’s also possible that the brain regions being studied, namely the pre-SMA/SMA and the anterior cingulate motor areas of the brain, may only be responsible for the late stages of motor planning; it’s conceivable that other higher brain systems might be better candidates for exerting will.


Also, test subjects — because of the way the experiments were set up — may have been influenced by other “choice-predictive” signals; the researchers may have been measuring brain activity not directly related to the experiment itself.


The jury, it would appear, is still out on the question of free will. While the neuroscientists are clearly revealing some important insights into human thinking and decision making, more work needs to be done to make it more convincing.


What would really settle the issue would be the ability for neuroscientists to predict the actual outcome of more complex decisions prior to the subject being aware of it themselves. That would, in a very true sense, prove that free will is indeed an illusion.


Furthermore, neuroscientists also need to delineate between different types of decision-making. Not all decisions are the same; moving a finger or pressing a button is very different than contemplating the meaning of life, or preparing the words for a big speech. Given the limited nature of the experiments to date (which are focused on volitional physical movements), this would certainly represent a fruitful area for inquiry.


Blurring science, philosophy, and morality

Moreover, there’s also the whole issue of how we’re supposed to reconcile these findings with our day-to-day lives. Assuming we don’t have free will, what does that say about the human condition? And what about taking responsibility for our actions?


Daniel Dennett has recently tried to rescue free will from the dustbin of history, saying that there’s still some elbow room for human agency — and that these are still scientific questions. Dennett, acknowledging that free will in the classic sense is largely impossible, has attempted to reframe the issue in such a way that free will can still be shown to exist, albeit under certain circumstances. He writes:

There’s still a lot of naïve thinking by scientists about free will. I’ve been talking about it quite a lot, and I do my best to undo some bad thinking by various scientists. I’ve had some modest success, but there’s a lot more that has to be done on that front. I think it’s very attractive to scientists to think that here’s this several-millennia-old philosophical idea, free will, and they can just hit it out of the ballpark, which I’m sure would be nice if it was true.

It’s just not true. I think they’re well intentioned. They’re trying to clarify, but they’re really missing a lot of important points. I want a naturalistic theory of human beings and free will and moral responsibility as much as anybody there, but I think you’ve got to think through the issues a lot better than they’ve done, and this, happily, shows that there’s some real work for philosophers.

Dennett, who is mostly responding to Sam Harris, has come under criticism from people who complain that he’s being epistemological rather than scientific.

Indeed, Sam Harris has made a compelling case that we don’t have it, but that it’s not a problem. Moreover, he argues that the ongoing belief in free will needs to come to an end:

A person’s conscious thoughts, intentions, and efforts at every moment are preceded by causes of which he is unaware. What is more, they are preceded by deep causes — genes, childhood experience, etc. — for which no one, however evil, can be held responsible. Our ignorance of both sets of facts gives rise to moral illusions. And yet many people worry that it is necessary to believe in free will, especially in the process of raising children.

Harris doesn’t believe that the illusoriness of free will is an “ugly truth,” nor something that will forever be relegated to philosophical abstractions. This is science, he says, and it’s something we need to come to grips with. “Recognizing that my conscious mind is always downstream from the underlying causes of my thoughts, intentions, and actions does not change the fact that thoughts, intentions, and actions of all kinds are necessary for living a happy life — or an unhappy one, for that matter,” he writes.

But as Dennett correctly points out, this is an issue that’s far from being an open-and-shut case. Advocates of the “free will as illusion” perspective are still going to have to improve upon their experimental methods, while also addressing the work of philosophers, evolutionary biologists — and even quantum physicists.

Why, for example, did humans evolve consciousness instead of zombie-brains if consciousness is not a channel for exerting free will? And given the nature of quantum indeterminacy, what does it mean to live in a universe of fuzzy probability?

There’s clearly lots of work that still needs to be done.

via Scientific evidence that you probably don’t have free will.

via Scientific evidence that you probably don’t have free will.

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