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Functional Nutrition Blog

The Health Benefits of Bee Pollen, Propolis & Royal Jelly

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Oct 28, 2014 4:00:00 PM

Bee Pollen, Propolis & Royal Jelly

By Gene Bruno, MS, MHS – Dean of Academics, Huntington College of Health Sciences

The common honey bee is a fascinating little insect that offers us humans some valuable natural foods with health-promoting benefits. These “super foods” include bee pollen, royal jelly and propolis.

Bee Pollen

Bee pollen is the pollen gathered from plants by honey bees, and brought back to their hive. Bee pollen contains all of the eight essential amino acids in amounts that vary between five to seven times the level found in equal weights of traditional high protein foods. It also contains vitamins A, D, E, K, C and bioflavonoids, as well as the complete B- complex; especially pantothenic acid (B5) and niacin. The high levels of vitamin B5 are particularly beneficial for the adrenal glands which are adversely affected during stress. Bee pollen has been used traditionally as an anti-aging food, and an energy food. As a matter of fact, it has been used by a number of Olympic athletes to improve their performance.

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Topics: cardiovascular health, anti-aging, smart supplementation

Supplement of the week: Designs for Health Lipoic Acid Supreme

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Oct 6, 2014 12:00:00 PM

Quick overview

This very powerful supplement contains 300 mg of lipoic acid, along with 4 mg of pure biotin and 500 mg of taurine. Research shows that lipoic acid competes for biotin-dependent enzymes. Long term supplementation of lipoic acid may reduce biotin levels, so it is recommended to supply them together. Taurine and biotin play important roles in maintaining healthy insulin function.*

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Topics: anti-aging, degenerative disease, skin health, smart supplementation

The Health Benefits of Alpha Lipoic Acid

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Oct 6, 2014 8:00:00 AM

Alpha Lipoic Acid

By Gene Bruno, MS, MHS

Smart SupplementationTM is a free series of educational literature created by Huntington College of Health Sciences (HCHS) as a public service. Although copyrighted, it may be freely photocopied and distributed, but may not be altered in any way. Smart SupplementationTM is not intended as medical advice. For diagnosis and treatment of any medical condition, consult your physician.

AIpha Lipoic Acid (ALA), also known as thioctic acid, has gained considerable attention as an antioxidant. ALA combats particularly nasty free radicals such as superoxide radicals, hydroxyl radicals, hypochlorous acid, peroxyl radicals, and singlet oxygen, thereby reducing oxidative stress. ALA is a small molecule, soluble in both water and fat. This allows it to work both inside the cell and at the membrane level, making ALA a particularly valuable antioxidant.

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Topics: anti-aging, degenerative disease, skin health, smart supplementation

Supplement of the week: Designs for Health S-Acetyl Glutathione Synergy

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 22, 2014 12:00:00 PM

Quick Overview

Acetylated form of glutathione for optimum absorption and bioavailability

S-Acetyl Glutathione (S-A-GSH) is a unique form of glutathione, one of the most powerful antioxidants naturally produced in the body. It has an acetyl group (COCH3) attached to the sulfur atom of cysteine in the glutathione molecule. S-A-GSH is well-suited for oral ingestion, because this acetyl group protects glutathione from breaking down in the gastrointestinal tract; once absorbed and inside the cells it is removed, thus leaving the glutathione molecule intact.

This product also includes N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC) and vitamin B6, both of which are important for the production of glutathione.

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Topics: anti-aging, immune health, degenerative disease, smart supplementation

Antioxidants: Our Defense Against Free Radicals

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 22, 2014 8:00:00 AM

By Art Presser, PharmD - President, Huntington College of Health Sciences

Smart SupplementationTM is a free series of educational literature created by Huntington College of Health Sciences (HCHS) as a public service. Although copyrighted, it may be freely photocopied and distributed, but may not be altered in any way. Smart SupplementationTM is not intended as medical advice. For diagnosis and treatment of any medical condition, consult your physician.

The terms “antioxidant” and “free radicals” are two of the most tossed around “buzz” words used in the health field today. What are they, and how do they effect our lives?

As researchers began to become interested in degenerative disease, aging, their causes, and how they can be prevented, they were lead to an interesting discovery. Our body and foods were already on the case. In fact, Hippocrates, who lived in around 400 BC, may have had the first insight. He said that in foods there are tiny substances that act on the body, and in some way change life. He went on to state that our lives depended on these changes. It amazes me, in 1996, just how “right on” Hippocrates was.

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Topics: cardiovascular health, anti-aging, degenerative disease

Acne: Supplements to Help

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 11, 2014 5:11:00 PM

By Gene Bruno, MS, MHS – Dean of Academics, Huntington College of Health Sciences

Acne—the scourge of teenagers everywhere and an embarrassment to those adults who still suffer from this inflammatory skin condition. Acne is a disorder of the sebaceous glands of the skin. The sebaceous glands secrete sebum (skin oil) through pores and hair follicles, which are abundant on the face. Acne occurs when the pores become clogged with sebum. Blackheads, external plugs formed of sebum and dead cells, may be invaded by bacteria, which cause pus-filled inflammations, or pimples (aka, “zits”). The overlying skin may become stretched to the point of rupture, resulting in lesions and, in prolonged severe cases, eventual scarring. Adolescents are most prone to acquiring a case of the dreaded zits due to the increased production of androgens (male hormones) that occur during puberty, which causes increased activity in the sebaceous gland. In addition, certain foods (e.g., dairy products, junk food, etc.) may increase irritation in susceptible persons.

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Topics: anti-aging, skin health, smart supplementation

What Is Leaky Brain Syndrome?

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 20, 2012 6:00:00 AM

Do you have unexplained brain fog, trouble concentrating, memory problems, or constant anxiety? You may have what is called a leaky brain. I've previously explained what a Leaky Gut is, but what is a leaky brain?

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Topics: brain health, anti-aging, gluten sensitivity, top posts

6 Foods For Healthy Brain

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 20, 2012 6:00:00 AM

On a previous post Health Brain Healthy Body I shared 7 tips for maintaining a healthy brain. Having a healthy brain is essential to having a healthy body. Low fat diets and junk food diets do little to feed the brain what it needs to maintain healthy neurological function, memory and emotional well being. Environmental toxins like heavy metals as well as alcohol and drug abuse contribute greatly to loss of brain function and mental health.

This blog post will focus on eating right for your brain. Those of you with issues like anxiety, deppression, brain fog, memory loss, attention deficit disorder, dementia, autism, and addictions cannot ignore the impact of nutrition on the brain. Everyone knows the importance of nutrition when other organs of the body are ailing. But interestingly enough, nutrition for the brain and the ailments of the brain goes all to often ignored. I don't care what other treatments you may be using to deal with your brain issues, you cannot forget to eat foods for a healthy brain! 

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Topics: whole foods, macronutrients, brain health, anti-aging

Supplements For Healthy Brain Function

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Sep 18, 2012 6:00:00 AM

We are born with more brain cells than we will ever have again in our lives. As we age, we lose brain cells, and as far as science can tell at this time, our bodies cannot regenerate the neurons in the brain. To preserve health and brain function, it is essential that we protect, nourish and exercise our brains. This is the topic of discussion for my Healthy Brain series.

Although our brains are unable to regenerate dead neurons, scientists have discovered that the brain has an amazing way of overcoming this downfall in order to preserve memory and brain function. This process is called neurotropism. When a neuron (brain cell) dies, there's a gap left between the cells on either side of the dead cell. Nerve transmissions usually travel from one neuron to the other much like electricity does. The healthy neurons surrounding the dead space where the cell once was will reach out with their extensions (dendrites) and stretch across that dead space to create new connections with surrounding neurons. This phenomenon maintains the function of the brains cells so that messages are able to travel across those divides without disruption. You can see some cells in neurotropism in the video below.

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Topics: brain health, anti-aging, detoxification, smart supplementation

The Health Benefits Of Glutathione

Posted by Daniel Sanelli, M.Sc. on Aug 3, 2012 6:00:00 AM


Glutathione is known as the "Master Antioxidant." Without antioxidants, nature's free radicals would cause endless damage to our bodies and living healthy would be quite difficult. Fortunately, we have a built in system of antioxidant power that when operating optimally, the dreaded effects of aging can be thwarted and youth preserved.

Glutathione is revered because of it's amazing power over free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules in our body that cause damage to our tissue and organs because of their irradic behavior. Glutathione, like other antioxidants, grab on to the unruly free radical and remove an electron, the bad influence on the free radical, and render it harmless. Glutathione is our most abundant antioxidant found in our cells and livers, and even stored in our protein. Science has observed that when there is marked illness, glutathione levels plummet. It is crucial to maintain adequate levels of glutathione, especially for those with chronic disease and autoimmune conditionsThose with autoimmune conditions are often low in gluathione levels.

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Topics: anti-aging, top posts, antioxidants