Micronutrient Supplementation and Wellness (HCG) Program
Micronutrient Supplementation and Wellness (HCG) Program on the Levels of Vitamins, Minerals, Inflammation and Cardiovascular Risk Factors
Micronutrients are vitamins or minerals that the human body requires, but in small amounts, for normal growth and development. Deficiencies in the intake of these nutrients are significant public health concerns. The “classic” example is vitamin A deficiency in children, which leads to blindness and immune system compromise, the latter increasing the risk of death due to infectious diseases. Other important micronutrient deficiencies include iron, vitamin D, folate, and vitamin B12. Many nations have developed recommendations for the daily intake of micronutrients to prevent these sorts of deficiency based pathologies. As a result, multivitamin and multi-mineral supplementation (MVMM) has become common in children and adults. As MVMM has become more popular, interest in the possible health benefits of supplementation over and above the minimum daily requirements to prevent clinical manifestations of deficiency has increased.
There is growing interest in the role of micronutrients (essential trace elements and vitamins) in the optimization of health, and prevention and treatment of diseases. Since many of these nutrients have antioxidant properties, they are thought to be beneficial in preventing cancer (by reducing oxidation induced DNA mutations). Also, the ability of antioxidants to protect cell membranes and to increase telomere lengths in cellular DNA had led some to suspect they can reduce the effects of aging.
As multivitamin –multimineral supplementation is the most commonly reported supplement, it is important to study the health benefits associated with regular intake.
We investigated the use of a particular MVMM supplement, developed by the Pure North Foundation, on blood chemistry parameters and lipid profiles, along with the inflammation marker C- reactive protein, in 100 steel company workers over a one year period of supplementation.
According to our study:
- participants with lower levels of vitamins D, B2, and C before supplementation tended to show higher levels of inflammation.
- Vitamin D levels correlated with a variety of lipid profile parameters. Analysis of the data after one year of supplementation demonstrated that participants with blood vitamin D concentrations above 30 ng/ml showed decreases in triglycerides, cholesterol to HDL ratio, and improvement of HDL levels.
- In addition, higher vitamin C levels were associated with lower triglyceride and VLDL levels.
- Blood concentrations of vitamin C, D, and E increased substantially as a result of supplementation, but coenzyme Q10 levels, lutein, lycopene, and vitamin A levels were not greatly affected.
- Looking into the distinction between smokers and non-smokers, our data indicate that improvements in antioxidant levels during MVMM supplementation are less dramatic in smokers. After one year supplementation, smokers had lower plasma antioxidant concentrations than nonsmokers. The greatest differences were found with lycopene, lutein, and vitamin A, while improvements in vitamin C, vitamin D and vitamin E were practically the same for both groups.
- Smokers had less improvement of the health score in comparison with non-smokers.
- For all participants, half year and one year of supplementation eliminated very low health scores, and increased the number of people with high scores.
We published our results in a peer-reviewed journal: Effects of Micronutrient Supplementation on Concentrations of Vitamins and Minerals, Inflammation and Cardiovascular Risk Factors. Mikirova N, Hunninghake R, Casciari J and Guilliams V. Vitamins and Minerals, 2014, 3(1):1-9
Part of the out Research Institute’s mission is to provide research that will aid physicians in evaluating orthomolecular treatments used at the Riordan Clinic. The Riordan Clinic is making a push toward “Lifestyle Care”, and part of this is a weight management program based on combining human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) treatment with a low calorie diet. While we have seen weight loss using this regiment, the clinic was interested in learning how the HCG diet affected typical measures of cardiovascular risk.
The Riordan Clinic also addresses sustained illnesses such as diabetes, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Our research institute developed a diagnostic tool that, using small amounts of blood serum, detects blood NADH levels. These NADH levels can be useful markers of a patient’s progress while being treated for any of the above conditions.
We conducted a clinical trial with roughly fifty volunteers undergoing the HCG treatments in conjunction with a low calorie diet. We were able to establish the following:
- Subjects lost an average of eight percent body weight. This includes a twelve percent average decrease in percent fat mass and a six percent decrease in percent lean mass. Some decreases in water weight (roughly five percent) were also seen.
- Weight loss occurred both during the forty day treatment phase and during a forty day maintenance phase.
- Blood chemistry parameters used as indicators of cardiovascular risk, such as total cholesterol and LDL levels, changed for the better during the diet.
- Patients undergoing the HCG treatment/diet saw increases in their circulating progenitor cell counts. This suggests improvements in stem cell formation, which in turn would provide extra repair for tissue damage associated with aging.
- The basal metabolic rate of subjects tended to decrease as they lost weight, but not as drastically as observed in other types of diet regiments.
As part of our interest in obesity and health, we examine how weight correlated with various laboratory parameters. Among our findings:
- Serum cytokine levels were higher in volunteers with higher body fat masses. This is particularly true of leptin, an adipose based hormone thought to regulate appetite. The elevation of leptin levels in obese subjects suggests a development of leptin resistance.
- Obese subjects (BMI > 25) showed significantly higher serum levels of insulin (a potential marker of Type II diabetes and “syndrome X”) and C-reactive protein (a maker of inflammation).
Our analysis of obesity and the HCG treatment has been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
- Effect of weight reduction on cardiovascular risk factors and CD34-positive cells in circulation. Mikirova NA, Casciari JJ, Hunninghake RE, Beezley MM; J. Med. Sci. 2011, 8:445-452