You may be eating a healthful diet, but if it's laced with contaminants - even in small amounts – you may not be doing enough to stay healthy. From toxic chemicals used in plastic bottles to pesticide residues in non-organic foods, each of us reacts differently to various amounts.
It's frustrating. Even for those of us who make healthy lifestyle choices, pollution can have a very damaging effect. A recent study published in The FASEB Journal examined how what's in your diet could be harming you.
In this study, researchers evaluated two groups of obese mice. They fed both groups a high-fat, high-sucrose-enriched diet. However, they included in one group's diet a low-dose cocktail of pollutants. This group consumed these pollutants through their entire lives. While this group did not exhibit toxicity or excess weight gain, the females' glucose tolerance deteriorated. This suggests their insulin signaling was not working properly. It's likely that the pollutants affected estrogen activity in their liver.
In contrast, the males did not exhibit glucose tolerance issues. However, they did experience changes in their livers related to cholesterol synthesis and transport. These results indicate that pollutants may indeed be contributing factors to the widespread impact of chronic diseases such as metabolic diseases and diabetes.
The FASEB Journal editor-in-chief Geral Wissmann, M.D. says, "This report confirms something we've known for a long time: pollution is bad for us. But, what's equally important, it shows that evaluating food contaminants and pollutants on an individual basis may be too simplistic. We can see that when "safe levels of contaminants and pollutants act together, they have significant impact on public health."
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Research is finally finding an association between contaminants and metabolic syndrome. In the past, I've suggested dietary changes like eliminating sugars and refined grains and taking a supplement like Metabolic Defense
, which supports a healthy insulin response. In light of this current research, I'm recommending that everyone with metabolic syndrome also take a supplement containing PectaSol modified citrus pectin to remove these contaminants. My personal preference is PectaSol Detox Formula
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Your voice of reason in Women's Health,
Dr. Janet Zand
Danielle Naville, Claudie Pinteur, Nathalie Vega, Yoan Menade, Michèle Vigier, Alexandre Le Bourdais, Emmanuel Labaronne, Cyrille Debard, Céline Luquain-Costaz, Martine Bégeot, Hubert Vidal, and Brigitte Le Magueresse-Battistoni. Low-dose food contaminants trigger sex-specific, hepatic metabolic changes in the progeny of obese mice. FASEB J September 2013 27:3860-3870, doi:10.1096/fj.13-231670.