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  What Vitamins Do I Need?


Vitamin requirements, benefits, deficiencies and needs - high potency vitamins above the RDA help reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, cataracts and macular degeneration. Reduce stress levels and prevent depression. Vitamins also improve immune function.

"I think all Americans adults, teenagers and children should be taking a multivitamin. Period," says Jeffrey Blumberg, professor of nutrition and director of the Antioxidants Research Laboratory at Tufts University.

Researchers in London find that taking vitamin supplements, particularly those containing folic acid or iron, during early pregnancy cuts the risk of miscarriage by about 50 percent.

Intake of enough vitamin D may drastically lower the risk of developing certain cancers, suggests a study in the Feb. 2006 issue of The American Journal of Public Health.

Women who take multiple vitamins for at least 15 years may cut their risk of colon cancer by 75 percent.

We now offer Liquid Multiple Vitamins and Minerals for people who hate pills, children and older adults. They are bio-available, High Potency with Fast Absorption and Added Phytonutrients.

According to a study published in the Archives of Family Medicine, 40 percent of Americans take vitamins. Most common were vitamin - mineral combinations.

More women (57%) than men (43%) took supplements.

The main sources of critical nutrients for women at reproductive age are calcium, iron, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin B12, vitamin A and carotenes.

B VITAMIN BENEFITS


Daily consumption of the B vitamin folic acid beginning before pregnancy can be crucial because birth defects of the brain and spine known as neural tube defects (NTDs) occur in the early weeks following conception, often before a woman knows she is pregnant.

Each year, an estimated 2200 babies are born with these defects, and additional affected pregnancies result in miscarriage or stillbirth. To help prevent NTDs, the March of Dimes recommends that women should consume a multivitamin containing at least 400 micrograms of folic acid every day beginning before pregnancy. Women should also eat foods fortified with folic acid and foods that naturally contain folic acid, such as leafy green vegetables, and beans as part of a healthy diet.

Almost 70 percent of American women of childbearing age fail to take the B vitamin folic acid every day even though many of them are aware it helps prevent birth defects, according to the latest survey released by the March of Dimes.

Folic acid is not only a safeguard against spina bifida and other birth defects in babies it also prevent heart disease and strokes. Research at the University of Ulster has shown that folic acid and three other related B-vitamins can prevent the accumulation of a high blood level of homocysteine, a new risk factor for heart disease and strokes.

DANGERS OF HOMOCYSTEINE


The risk of high homocysteine is similar to the risk of high cholesterol - but the good news is that it is much easier to lower homocysteine levels through increased intake of folic acid, vitamin B-12 and vitamin B-6 can help to prevent a build up of homocysteine.

The amino acid homocysteine may damage the brain, according to a study by researchers in the Netherlands. Previous research found an association between excess amounts of homocysteine and coronary artery disease.

In the latest study, researchers used neuropsychological exams to assess cognitive function in 345 people with coronary artery disease. They also assessed vascular damage and risk factors. The investigators found that high levels of homocysteine were associated with lower performance in tests of memory, attention, visual perception, and construction.

"In patients with vascular disease, elevated levels of [homocysteine] were related to a lower performance in cognitive function, even after adjustment for possible variables such as intima-media [artery wall] thickness and site of manifestation of vascular disease," the authors of the study wrote. One possible explanation for this, they said, is that homocysteine has a direct neurotoxic effect on the brain.

As the folic acid story unfolds, it is becoming clear that its importance goes beyond its major role for mothers-to-be and that, in fact, it is not just a woman's nutrient. New and emerging roles for this important vitamin include its probable role in protecting against heart disease and strokes by preventing the accumulation of homocysteine.

A fourth B-vitamin riboflavin can also play an important role in protecting against heart disease and strokes. To protect against elevated homocysteine in all individuals, including those with the genetic predisposition, a good intake of all four B-vitamins is recommended.

VITAMIN C BENEFITS


Linus Pauling, the late Nobel Laureate, known for his research on Vitamin C, personally believed that RDA established levels for nutrition are sorely inadequate in that each individual experiences different needs. Pauling established that a minimum of 1,000 mg of vitamin C should be consumed daily. Yet, the established RDA is under 75mg, just enough to prevent scurvy, a serious vitamin C deficiency.

Pauling wrote Vitamin C and the Common Cold. It became a sensation, kicked off a public controversy in the press, and helped convince millions of people to take more vitamin C. The medical community roundly attacked both the findings and Pauling's credibility.

Researchers analyzed vitamin C intakes and periodontal disease indicators in 12,419 U.S. adults. They found that people who consumed less than the recommended 60 mg per day (about one orange) were at nearly one-and-a-half times the risk of developing severe gingivitis as those who consumed three times the RDA (more than 180 mg). Gingivitis is the mildest form of periodontal disease, and it causes the gums to become red, swell and bleed easily.

The relationship between severe vitamin C deficiency and gum health has long been known. In the late 18th century, sailors away at sea would eat limes to prevent their gums from bleeding. The relationship between vitamin C and periodontal disease is likely due to vitamin C's role in maintaining and repairing healthy connective tissue along with its antioxidant properties.

Periodontal disease is an inflammatory disorder that increases tissue damage and loss. Since vitamin C is known as a powerful scavenger of reactive oxygen species, which form part of the body's antioxidant defense system, low levels of dietary vitamin C may compromise the body's ability to neutralize these tissue destructive oxidants.

Researchers also found that tobacco users especially had higher levels of periodontal disease if they also consumed lower levels of dietary vitamin C. Since oxidants from cigarette smoking lower vitamin C levels in the blood, smokers need higher levels of dietary vitamin C to help counteract smoke's oxidants.

Research shows vitamin C plus flavonoids improves gingival health in a group of people with gingivitis. There was less improvement, however, when vitamin C was given without flavonoids. Evidence suggests that flavonoids by themselves may reduce inflammation of the gums.

VITAMIN E BENEFITS


People of retirement age who take both Vitamin E and Vitamin C daily reduce their risk of Alzheimer's disease by almost 80 percent, a new study shows. It appears that when the two vitamins are taken in high doses they work together to protect neurons. The use of these antioxidant vitamins may offer an attractive strategy for the prevention of Alzheimer disease. It appears the high dose of vitamin available in individual supplements is what provided the additional protection.

Vitamin supplements - and vitamins E and C - have been touted for years as effective against a host of conditions, including cardiovascular disease and some forms of cancer.

Don't bet your health on cheap, incomplete supplements. It is our opinion, that if the entire adult population faithfully took a high potency multiple vitamin everyday, in a few years, at least 3 out of 10 physicians would be unemployed, the cost of health insurance would drop by one third, and so would the revenues of the pharmaceutical companies.




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EYE VITAMINS


A number of epidemiologic studies have suggested an association between cataract incidence and antioxidant status. In a study of the correlation between antioxidant status and cataracts in 112 subjects aged 40-70 years in the United States, high plasma levels of at least two of the three antioxidant vitamins (vitamins E and C and carotenoids) were associated with a significantly reduced risk of cataract development compared to low plasma levels of at least one of these vitamins. Subjects with a high plasma antioxidant status had an 80% decrease in cataract risk.

Epidemiologic studies have also investigated the relationship between antioxidant levels and the risk of age-related macular degeneration, which is the leading cause of irreversible vision loss after age 50 in industrialized countries. In a well-nourished population enrolled in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging in the United States of 976 subjects 40 years of age and older, those with plasma vitamin E levels in the lowest quartile had double the risk of age-related macular degeneration compared to subjects with higher plasma vitamin E concentrations. A high antioxidant index, which included plasma vitamin C, vitamin E and beta-carotene levels, was protective against age-related macular degeneration.



The Importance of Antioxidants In Disease Prevention


Everyone is exposed to free radicals which are detrimental to their health and are known to accelerate the aging process. Free radical levels rise in the body during rigorous exercise and from exposure to pollutants, radiation, UV light and smoking. During infection and chronic inflammation, massive amounts of nitric oxide and superoxide radicals form in immune cells to fight off invading bacteria and viruses. Made in excess, these oxidants can harm and combine to form other toxic chemicals that produce further damage in brain cells and DNA.

New clinical studies appear every month revealing the link between obtaining adequate amounts of antioxidants and preventing heart disease, strokes, cancer, diabetes, alzheimers, cataracts, macular degeneration and other diseases. Antioxidant defenses that help protect the body from free radical damage include the vitamins C and E, carotenoids, B complex vitamins, zinc, selenium, bioflavonoids, melatonin and Pycnogenol.

Femhealth's Advanced Eye & Body Formula has both the amounts and forms of the nutrients found to be most efficacious in preventing cancer, macular degeneration, heart disease and other degenerative health conditions.

We also offer a special fromulation called Her Vitamins. This product includes extra Vitamin K needed to help prevent osteoporosis and contains Spirulina, Dong Quai, Siberian Ginseng, Wild Yam, Royal Jelly and Soy Isoflavones. Her Vitamins are ideal for adolescent girls and women of all ages.


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