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It’s not the first time that dairy foods have been associated with health risks, but the attention is usually focused on the effects of milk’s naturally-occurring saturated fats and cholesterol, as well as drug and hormonal contamination. More recently, researchers have been looking at the possible long-term effects of milk protein consumption, and they do mean ‘long-term’, going so far as to suggest prenatal effects in expectant Mom’s who consume dairy. But for the millions of nutritionally-conscious consumers who consider dairy protein like whey an important part of their regimen – not to mention the brands that market such supplements – this just-published study raises more questions than answers. We’ll try to put it into perspective in today’ AllStarHealth blog.

With all the economic belt-tightening going on, lots of people are trimming down their supplement regimens. When it comes to getting to most bang for your supplement buck, there are few that hold a candle to alpha lipoic acid. Using inexpensive alpha lipoic acid (ALA) is like getting 3 or more supplements in one. You won’t believe how many different things ALA can do for you, but you’re about to find out in today’s AllStarHealth blog.

Sure, protein shakes are a great way to get extra protein in your diet, but if that’s all you use your protein shake for – just protein – then you’re missing out.

More About Gamma E

March 25th, 2009

Vitamin E is a supplement category that really hasn’t caught up to the latest research, as we discussed in this blog post from January. As we explained then, vitamin E isn’t one compound but a family of eight compounds, 4 tocopherols and 4 tocopherols, each with specific and unique roles to play. However, most vitamin E supplements only contain one form, alpha tocopherol. The best vitamin E’s are those few that contain all eight compounds, but these remain a stubbornly small portion of the vitamin E supplement market. Customers and brands alike may not like the higher prices of full-spectrum vitamin E’s, but there’s growing evidence of their superiority. A soon-to-be published study adds more evidence for a special, protective role of gamma and the other tocopherols, all of which are definitely lacking in most vitamin E supplements and multis.

Last December we published a post in response to the growing number of emails and calls we’ve had in regard to web and multilevel-marketed Acai supplements like Mona Vie. Now an leading consumer advocacy group has lent its voice to those calling for caution and a hefty dose of caveat emptor.

As we said in Wednesday’s post, if you supplements at all, you probably use more than one. Your supplement regimen is the group of supplements you’re currently using and as important as nutrition and health are, it really deserves to regarded as more than just a few bottles on a cabinet shelf. Every regimen represents a substantial investment of money at the least and often a last-best attempt to get a particular health problem under control before resorting to drug or surgical options. So in the interest of getting the best results for your money, time and health, it’s good to periodically audit your supplement regimen, making sure you’re taking the right things, the right way, at the right time, and are able to do so on an ongoing basis.

Do you find it difficult to swallow multiple capsules or tablets? Is it becoming hard to manage your regimen and stay consistent? You’re not alone. As supplements become more popular many users find that trying to adhere to even a modest 3 or 4 supplement regimen becomes a little tricky and hard to manage. That’s to say nothing of the more complex regimens that incorporate 8, 10 or more supplements. Lots of people are sold on the idea of using supplements, but quickly become turned off to the process when they try to come to grips with swallowing a handful of capsules and juggling a few different products on a daily process. What can you do to make taking supplement products easier and stick to your regimen? A lot, actually. Find out in today’s AllStarHealth.com blog, where we’ll discuss the easiest and best ways to physically take your nutritional supplements.

Herba epimedii is an herb that’s been used for thousands of years in Traditional Chinese Medicine, which refers to it as yin yang huo. Loosely translated, yin yang huo means “horny goat weed”. Horny goat weed is a very popular supplement both by itself and in various libido formulas where it’s combined with other herbs and nutrients. With a name like ‘horny goat weed’ it’s hardly surprising that it’s best-known and most widely-used as a libido and sexual tonic. But the name also makes it hard for people to take the herb seriously. The name too easily lends itself to jokes and makes many otherwise interested customers uncomfortable talking about it or purchasing it. That’s a shame because it’s now clear that horny goat weed is useful for much more than boosting libido. Find out more about the herb with the unfortunate name in today’s AllStarHealth.com blog.

PMS + EFAS = AOK

March 13th, 2009

Among the most common questions from our female (and occasionally male) customers concerns the difficulty many women have with PMS, also known as dysmenorrhea; Are there alternatives to drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen, and which ones do you recommend? Among the most commonly-used supplements to help ease the cramping, bloating and irritability that characterize PMS/dysmenorrhea are herbs like dong quai and vitex, vitamin B-6 and B-12, minerals like magnesium and potassium and the serotonin precursor 5-HTP. You can find women who get great results with one or a combination of these nutrients, but because PMS has a complex and dynamic set of causative factors that vary from woman to woman, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, and probably never will be. However, research suggests that there are two types of nutrients that – besides being good for you anyway – deserve special consideration in terms of easing PMS symptoms.

Enzymes are a rapidly-growing category of nutritional supplement. Digestive enzymes are the most popular types, but systemic enzymes are gaining acceptance too. Systemic enzymes are used for all kinds of health issues from chronic sinusitis to back pain and sports injuries. Find out more about systemic enzymes today’s AllStarHealth blog.