Volume 17 • Number 3 • March 2016


If you are not eating your veggies and fruits perhaps this will induce you to do so: they help with erectile dysfunction![1] Sources of circulation-promoting micronutrients are anthocyanins, flavones and flavanones; they are found in veggies, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, grapes, red wine, apples, pears, cherries and citrus products. Women may also benefit from these foods, directly and indirectly, if you get my meaning. Sexual issues are powerful motivators, are they not?

Hugo Rodier, MD

Magnesium Review

Veggies and fruits are also high in Magnesium, needed in ~500 enzymatic reactions in our body. This means that a whole lot of health problems will get started when you lack this critical mineral. Take for instance Circulation/Erectile problems: the main cause of this problem is INSULIN RESISTANCE. Before proceeding let me reiterate that if you are still stuck on the cholesterol hypotheses you are not reading this newsletter or keeping up with cutting edge research. I will just say now that cholesterol is only a problem when our liver is not processing cholesterol well, which makes it more sticky.[2] And why is the liver so messed up in a lot of people: FATTY LIVER, an epidemic driven by Insulin Resistance.

Take a look at the evidence, starting with Magnesium’s close buddy, Calcium:

  • “Disruption of calcium transfer from ER to mitochondria links alterations of mitochondria-associated ER membrane integrity to hepatic insulin resistance,” J. Diabetologia March 2016, Volume 59, Issue 3, pp 614-623
  • Hypomagnesemia in Type 2 Diabetes: A Vicious Circle?” J. Diabetes. 2016;65:3-13
  • Higher magnesium intake reduces risk of impaired glucose and insulin metabolism and progression from prediabetes to diabetes in middle-aged Americans.” J. Diabetes Care. 2014;37:419-427
  • Magnesium intake decreases Type 2 diabetes risk through the improvement of insulin resistance and inflammation: the Hisayama Study.” J. Diabet Med. 2013;30:1487-1494
  • Oral magnesium supplementation improves glycaemic status in subjects with prediabetes and hypomagnesaemia: A double-blind placebo-controlled randomized trial.” J. Diabetes Metab. 2015;41:202-207.

The best way to get plenty of these minerals is a healthy diet. If you wish to supplement them see that you do it in tandem with vitamin D3 (2-5K IU) and CoQ10 ~300mg. The latter is high in sardines and spinach which nobody eats. COQ10 works on the mitochondria of all cells (see first article above). Alpha Lipoic acid (300-600mg) from broccoli is another mitochondrial antioxidant; it is a drug in Europe for liver issues and Diabetes. Consequently, both help liver and insulin resistance issues.[3]

Fatty Liver Review

“Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), the progressive form of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), is emerging as a main health problem in industrialized countries. Lifestyle modifications are effective in the treatment of NAFLD; however, the long-term compliance is low. Therefore, several pharmacological treatments have been proposed but none has shown significant efficacy or long-term safety. Natural polyphenols are a heterogeneous class of polyphenolic compounds contained in vegetables, which are being proposed for the treatment of different metabolic disorders. Although the beneficial effect of these compounds has traditionally related to their antioxidant properties, they also exert several beneficial effects on hepatic and extra-hepatic glucose and lipid homeostasis. Furthermore, natural polyphenols exert antifibrogenic and antitumoural effects (less clotting and less tumors) in animal models, which appear relevant from a clinical point of view because of the association of NASH with cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Several polyphenols, such anthocyanins, curcumin and resveratrol and those present in coffee, tea, soy are available in the diet and their consumption can be proposed as part of a healthy diet for the treatment of NAFLD. Other phenolic compounds, such as silymarin, (Milk thistle herb) are commonly consumed worldwide as nutraceuticals or food supplements. Natural antioxidants are reported to have beneficial effects in preclinical models of NAFLD and in pilot clinical trials, and thus need clinical evaluation. In this review, we summarize the existing evidence regarding the potential role of natural antioxidants in the treatment of NAFLD and examine possible future clinical applications.”[4]

Let me beat you over the head with this:

  • JMCE March 2016 Volume 65, Issue 3, Pages 92–99 “Associations of insulin resistance, inflammation and liver synthetic function with very low-density lipoprotein: The Cardiovascular Health Study.” This means that cholesterol problems are driven by insulin resistance in the liver.
  • JMCE March 2016 Volume 65, Issue 3, Pages 64–72 “Circulating level of hepatocyte growth factor predicts incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA).” Heart disease begins with your diet affecting the liver AND gut (See below.)

All the above is compounded by a lack of exercise. For those who fear fructose, or the natural sugar contained in fruit, you must remember that most of any potential negative effect from fructose is due to inactivity. In other words, being active, especially after eating fruit blocks the storage of fructose in the liver.[5]

Eczema Review

I often see patients who have been given a cream to treat this problem. While there is a place for symptomatic treatment to hide unsightly lesions, the real work to cure it is often neglected. You know what the problem is: an imbalance of gut flora.[6]  This produces metabolites that leak out of the gut and end up inflaming the skin. Also, absorption of key nutrients to maintain the dynamic molting of our skin layers is compromised.

If you have been reading this INTEGRATIVE newsletter, then you are not going to be surprised to learn that eczema and practically all skin problems are associated with a higher risk of heart disease.[7]  Why? They share the same roots! The gut and our diet.

How do you work on the imbalance of gut lfora? Eat your fruits and veggies! A healthy skin will also enhance your sex life! You may also supplements probiotics and fiber.

Garlic Review

Garlic is good for blood pressure problems, cholesterol issues and your immune system.[8] It may also keep away vampires AND a potential lover… How do you mitigate the bad breath? Have her/him eat it, too! More references below:

“Garlic-Derived Organic Polysulfides and Myocardial Protection,”
J. Nutr. 2016 146: 403S

“Aged Garlic Extract Inhibits Human Platelet Aggregation by Altering Intracellular Signaling and Platelet Shape Change.” It lowers clotting problems—think of blood thinning.
J. Nutr. 2016 146: 410S

“Garlic and Heart Disease,”
J. Nutr. 2016 146: 416S

“Aged Garlic Extract Reduces Low Attenuation Plaque in Coronary Arteries of Patients with Metabolic Syndrome (insulin resistance) in a Prospective Randomized Double-Blind Study,”
J. Nutr. 2016 146: 427S

  1. “Dietary flavonoid intake and incidence of erectile dysfunction,” Am J Clin Nutr 2016 103: 534
  2. Regression of Atherosclerosis: The Journey From the Liver to the Plaque and Back
    J. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2016;36:226
  3. “Coenzyme Q10 prevents hepatic fibrosis, inflammation, and oxidative stress in a male rat model of poor maternal nutrition and accelerated postnatal growth,” Am J Clin Nutr 2016 103: 579
  4. “Natural antioxidants for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: molecular targets and clinical perspectives,” J. Liver International Volume 36, Issue 1, pages 5–20, January 2016
  5. “Exercise performed immediately after fructose ingestion enhances fructose oxidation and suppresses fructose storage,” Am J Clin Nutr 2016 103: 348
  6. “Synbiotics for Prevention and Treatment of Atopic Dermatitis. A Meta-analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials,” JAMA Pediatr. Published online January 25, 2016. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.3943
  7. “Heart disease and (dermatology problems) link grows stronger,” Annual Meeting of the Society for Investigative Dermatology, Philadelphia, 2006
    “Psoriasis and heart disease linked by high homocysteine,”
    Annual Meeting British Assoc Derm. Manchester, 2006
    “Psoriasis Often Signals Metabolic Syndrome,” J. Family Practice News, January 2011, page 16
    “Psoriasis increases risk of Coronary Artery Disease by 6%,” J. Family Practice News, June 15th 2011, p128, commenting on J. Ann Rheum Dis 2010;69:325
    “Prevalence of the Metabolic Syndrome in Psoriasis,” J. Arch Derm 2011;147:419
  8. “Garlic Lowers Blood Pressure in Hypertensive Individuals, Regulates Serum Cholesterol, and Stimulates Immunity: An Updated Meta-analysis and Review,”
    J. Nutr. 2016 146: 389S
Hugo Rodier, MD is an integrative physician based in Draper, Utah who specializes in healing chronic disease at the cellular level by blending proper nutrition, lifestyle changes, & allopathic practices when necessary.

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