Saturday, December 27, 2008

Vitamin D and Other TYP Basics

We use a lotta Vitamin D at Track Your Plaque. Everyone is deficient and everyone requires supplementation. Dr. Davis has found that Vitamin D revolutionized and accelerated coronary calcification reversal in addition to many other attributes:
--improved insulin resistance
--increase in HDL 20-30% (in 6-12mos)
--lowering of blood pressure
--increased testosterone (and I've noticed higher estrogen)
--protection from colds and infections

Vitamin D is a pro-hormone... powerful, potent, and paleo-to-the-core. Since pre-paleolithic times, Vitamin D has been produced in our skin from the UVB radiation of sunlight. The sun indeed powers nearly all life on earth. It is essential and signals reproduction, energy and longevity for not just humans but all land and marine plants, prokaryotes, and animals. The sun has been around the last ~4 Billion years and scientists estimated it will continue to burn another ~4 Billion years.

If you are taking vitamin D, then you are on 'bio-identical hormone replacement therapy' baby!

Typical Dose: 2000 to 10,000 IU daily (enough to achieve and maintain ideal blood ranges 60-70 ng/ml)

Typical Administration: Morning/Daytime

(many people report insomnia, including me, if taken in the evening *makes sense right?*)

Typical Lab Monitoring: Calcium, Magnesium, PTH, [25(OH)D] every 6 months once optimal levels are obtained

TYPical Goal: Blood [25(OH)D] = 60-70 ng/ml

Other TYP staples are:

--High to Ultra-high dose fish oil 6 to 10 g EPA + DHA daily (Depending on how much inflammation and Lp(a); low dose 3 g/day if no inflammation)

--Niacin, Vitamin B3 1-2 grams daily (we prefer Slo-Niacin which is EFFECTIVE and cheap $12.99 at Costco for #150 tabs)

Side benefits of all the above:
--diminished infections (and maybe incl HIV?)
--diminished immunosuppression
--diminished cancers, melanoma
--diminished wrinkles *twinkle*
--increases life span

Vitamin A (natural; not vitamin A precursors like beta-carotene)
Vitamin A helps all the above as well. I like Vitamin A esp because most rice-eating communities are deficient of vitamin A (Bamji MS Experientia Suppl. 1983;44:245-63.). On the Japanese diet, 20% of individuals were deficient in Vitamin A and Riboflavin B2. Going grain-free and eating Paleo easily ameliorates Vitamin A deficiency. In the mean time, supplementation provides a bridge until optimal health is achieved.

Read more about Vitamin A: HERE


Jake said...

I finally got my Vitamin D levels above 70 this last month and I am no longer lactose intolerant.
I have been lactose intolerant since I was a child and now it is gone.

I have done Google searches on this subject and I can find nothing on this benefit of Vitamin D.

Have you ever heard of this or am I a n=1?

Dr. B G said...


That is great!

I've personally not heard of that or seen any literature on it, but it would not surprise me. The regeneration of the gallbladder and subsequent lactase (I think that is where it comes from) and other digestive enzymes appears like other things vitamin D triggers.

That's funny...Heart Hawk and I have beening discussing n=1 experiments ad nauseum lately. Seth Roberts is the king of n=1 (of the 'Shangri-la diet' fame). I'll try google-scholaring/pubmed later.


Dr. B G said...

Lactose intolerance appears to be (of course) a genetic polymorphism of the lactase enzyme gene which is expressed in the intestinal wall.

Here is an excerpt from Jarvela I et al HERE
"Lactose is metabolized to glucose
and galactose by the lactase enzyme (LCT) in the intestinal wall. After weaning, the lactase enzyme activity is normally down-regulated leading to lactose
malabsorption (LM; adult-type hypolactasia). In subjects with LM, the activity of lactase enzyme in the intestinal cells is down-regulated to 5–10% of that in
infancy until 10–20 years of age [4]. Actually, our recent
unpublished study of 300 intestinal biopsies from pediatric
patients shows this down-regulation to occur by the age of 12 years (Rasinpera¨ et al., unpublished data). A mutation preserving high lactase activity has occurred in human history making nearly half of the world’s population able to tolerate milk [4]. The ability to maintain high lactase activity throughout life is inherited..."

From what I could briefly find, there is no apparent relationship betw vit D blood levels or deficiency and the LCT (T/C-13910) polymorphism which is associated with adult onset lactose intolerance (Renner W et al. J Bone Miner Res 2004). PMID 14753735

However, naturally, I wonder... why do we have this adaptation?

Why milk?

Why upregulation of Lactase for some individuals and not other humans?

Why are lactase enzymes less affective in the face of IRON DEFICIENCY, as it occurs when the transition from Hunter-Gather lifestyle to grain/AGRICULTURAL lifestyles??

Jake -- maybe lactose intolerance is the 'norm' and having lactose-TOLERANCE is like hemachromatosis? ...a genetic adaptation to grain/legume/LECTIN consumption to prevent iron deficiency in pregnant women and increasing fetal survival (genetic legacies)?

Decreased sucrase and lactase activity in iron deficiency is accompanied by reduced gene expression and upregulation of the transcriptional repressor PDX-1. Oates et al. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2005 Dec;289(6):G1108-14.

Effects of crude red kidney bean lectin (phytohemagglutinin) exposure on performance, health, feeding behavior, and gut maturation of pigs at weaning.
Svendsen J et al. J Anim Sci. 2007 Feb;85(2):477-85.
PMID: 17040948

Thanks for your post!

Dr. B G said...

BTW Jake,

When did you stop wheat (I presume)?

3 mos ago? 6 mos ago?

That may have a factor as well besides vitamin D repletion to normal levels!


David said...

I found you through Dr. Davis' blog. Love your blog! You're a great communicator.

I'm curious about the Slo-Niacin. I see it recommended all the time in TYP contexts. I understand that it is a slow-release, as opposed to an extended-release (12 hrs or longer) preparation. This is what makes it safe. However, is it only recommended over immediate release because it does not have as much of a flush, or does it actually work better all the way around than immediate-release niacin? I take Twinlab's immediate-release niacin, which I can get for about $4 per bottle (100 capsules, 500 mg per capsule). I no longer get the flush. Would it therefore be just as advantageous to stick with the Twinlab niacin, or is there some other benefit to be had by using the Slo-Niacin? I just don't want to be paying 3x more than I'm paying now if I don't have to!

Also, I know that niacin should not be split up into more than 2 doses per day. If I am taking immediate release niacin, is it okay to take the whole day's amount in a single dose, or is there more advantage to splitting the dose into morning and evening?

Any help to clear up these questions would be appreciated!


Dr. B G said...

Hi David,

Actually I don't know of any advantage of Slo-Niacin over short-acting (also known as 'immediate'release') niacin. I don't see any contraindications to continue with the immediate-release version if you tolerate without flushing.

The liver adverse effects (short-term inflammation and elevated liver tests ALT, AST) appear to occur with preparations exposing the liver to niacin for > 12 hrs. That is why Dr. Davis advices using Slo-Niacin only once daily (opposed to what the manufacturers suggest once-twice daily). He has deep experience with Slo-Niacin and has seen some cases of elevated liver tests (though fairly rare).

From some of the human growth hormone studies, it appears niacin when taken in the evening may have more of a profound effect on hormone releat -- hGH, testosterone, etc. However for HDL increases, whether people take in the AM versus PM, I haven't noticed any differences yet.

Niacin emulates physical training (anaerobic and/or endurance) and fasting states. In a way, I really like it b/c it is essentially fasting or exercise in a 'pill'. But unlike exercise or IF, other downstream benefits are not expressed like weight loss, improved glucoses, sharpening of the mind, muscle development, and on and on.


David said...

Wow, quick response! Thanks! That was really helpful. When I had my Lp(a) tested 4.5 years ago (I was 21), it was 76 mg/dl, so now that I know the significance of that, I'm really trying to take measures to keep it from becoming a bigger issue later on. My dad's Lp(a) is 225 nmol/l and he just had a heart attack at 55. I don't want to follow the same path. What is the usual niacin dose for bringing down really high Lp(a) like that? I know it's higher than for dealing with cholesterol, but not sure of just how much more.

Oh, I'm also curious about what effect the Pauling/Rath recommendations (lysine, proline, vit. C) might have on Lp(a). I'm having my dad give that a shot along with the other standard TYP recommendations. We'll see.

Thanks again for the reply!!


Dr. B G said...


I'm very sorry to hear about your father. He's very lucky to have you help him to recover and get on T-R-A-C-K.

Are you familiar with the topics regarding Lp(a) we're discussing on the TYP forum? If not, I'd highly suggest considering.

Lp(a) is our greatest burden and challenge. With that said, it is the arena where the most improvements are often seen!!

As a function of HDL-cholesterol, Lp(a) is elevated in kidney failure, stress situations (infection, sleep deprivation, mentral stress, etc), AND a high carb/wheat diet deficient in saturated fats and cholesterol.

The new TYP diet Part 3 expands on these nutritional concepts -- please try to check it out.

If HDL can raise (naturally -- not drug-driven) to > 60 mg/dl with the large HDL % as high as possible, you'll find great success and stabilization and even regression.

I see great results with HDLs increase 50% in only 2-3mos and Lp(a) dropping by 50%. The secret *wink* is:
--wheat cessation
--low carb diet -- no grains, minimal legumes
--non-starchy vegs
--moderate to high fat (3-6 omega-3 eggs, grassfed meat, fatty seafood, olive oil, unrefined coconut oil, MCT oil, mac nut oil, etc)
--some resistance training -- with the goal belly fat reduction
--taurine 3 g twice daily
--arginine 3 g twice daily
--krill oil (or astaxanthin -- 4 mg daily)
--ultra high dose fish oil 10 g/day
--vitamin D 5000-10,000+ IU daily -- whatever dose to get to 70 ng/ml
--Magnesium 1-2 g/day (depending on tolerance and loose stools)
--NO CALCIUM SUPPLEMENTATION AT ALL and even consideration of dairy elimination for one year
--sugar free Metamucil (or Rx Welchol) if loose stools is REALLY problematic
--(pycnogenol 75-100mg/day from Trader Joe's if appear 'ADHD' or anxious or have migraines or have a lot age spots/freckles)

David, consider collaborating with a physician open minded to learn about heart disease reversal. Avoid zetia and fibrates (Lopid, Tricor) and high dose statins which appear to specifically worsen Large-HDLs A-N-D Lp(a).

Niacin is optional -- but if tolerated can synergize and improve the above parameters. Niacin however takes 18-36 mos to work (which is fine). We use typically 1-2 grams daily for Lp(a) and raising Large-HDLs.

Hope that helps!

Dr. B G said...

BTW-- I don't really have any thoughts or experiences with Rath's protocol. It does make sense. Please let use know if you try it and the results!

David said...

Thanks so much for taking the time to respond so comprehensively. Super helpful stuff! I'm in your debt.

I've been intrigued by the Pauling/Rath theory and treatment for quite some time, and before my discovery of Dr. Davis and TYP, I thought it was THE answer to heart disease. I'm sure there's more to it than that, given what I know now (mostly through the influence of Dr. Davis et al), but it's still something to wonder about!

Just FYI, and because it makes you go "Hmmm...", here's a link to a study Rath did using the vitamin C, lysine, proline, etc.:

He used Ultrafast CT scanning to track the results. Interesting, if nothing else!

Also, if you're ever interested, here's one of the better explanations of the Pauling therapy that I've found online:

Thanks for your help and speedy replies!


Dr. B G said...

Hi David,

I will definitely check those out -- had no idea Rath used CT technology! That's great! He does have fantastic ideas for the evolution of Lp(a). Similar theories are proposed now for other genetic adaptations (or mal-adaptations in a grain-based society).

Please let me know how your progress is later!


Anonymous said...

In my experience the best way to get around lactose issues is to predigest your milk before you drink it. Nourishing Traditions really opened my eyes to this. I have a kefir grain colony in the fridge now, am learning how to make yogurt, and would like to get hold of piima culture eventually to make my own cream cheese and whey. It is not strictly paleo but as the large fat-bearing animals are almost universally gone, especially here in North America, it's an easy way to get more of the fat we need to be healthy. In addition, letting kefir ferment for two days to get extra sour makes it higher in folate, and helping to maintain the lactobacteria in your gut is a good idea in any case.

I'm taking cod liver oil capsules to get more A and D but I think I need to try taking the real stuff instead. They water down the capsules with soybean oil, I think. :(

Dr. B G said...

Thank you for your thoughts!
My sister 'M' is allergic to milk -- including yogurt, goat cheese, sheep cheese.

She has tried fermented forms and unfortunately cannot tolerabe. I don't know why certain HLA types or certain genetic redispositions allows people to tolerate kefir and other fermented dairy?