Tag Archives: k2

Synergy and Our Body’s Balancing Act

Synergy happens when many parts come together to make a whole that is even greater than the simple sum of the individual elements.  In the Bible book of 1 Corinthians 12 the apostle Paul talks about a kind of synergy in the body of Christ’s believers. Paul uses the human body as his example when he says “the body is not made up of one part but many.”  One part is not more important than another, and all parts no matter how seemingly insignificant are necessary to the body. Paul wrote “The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I don’t need you!’ And the head cannot say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you!’ 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable,”  Just like the parts of the body work synergistically to make a living, breathing person so do the various nutrients work within our bodies.

Wander down any grocery aisle and you’d likely think that some nutrients were more important than others. “Calcium Fortified!” is plastered across everything from orange juice to chocolatecalcium fortified Orange Juice syrup.  Skim milk, breakfast cereals and margarine carry boldface letters announcing  “Added vitamin D!” The truth is that no single nutrient is more important than another. Just like our feet must cooperate with our toes, our legs and our brains in order for us to walk or run, so must the nutrients we get from our diet work together to keep us strong and healthy.

Vitamin A is crucial for eyesight and a healthy immune system, but taking too much vitamin A on its own over time can be toxic. Vitamin D is critical to life,  guiding the body to make strong bones and a calm, healthy nervous system.  Taking megadoses of Vitamin D over time can also be toxic. But together, when vitamins A&D are present and balanced within the structure of a healthy, nutrient-dense diet, they work synergistically to protect against toxicity.  Look at calcium: Taken on its own in large doses calcium can actually cause osteoporosis and atherosclerosis. This is called the “calcium paradox”. Balance the calcium with magnesium, along with Vitamins D&K2, and you stop the toxicity.

Chris Masterjohn PhD, a researcher with the Weston A Price Foundation, says that we need to take the focus away from trying to achieve a particular concentration of any single vitamin in our bodies and instead realize that ALL of the fat soluble vitamins are important. Eating a good diet, such as the one recommended by Dr. Weston Price, insures that you have balanced levels of all the nutrients allowing for synergistic action between the nutrients.

Dr. Kate Rheaume-Bleue explained this nutrient synergy like a team of gymnasts working together to put on fancy balancing acts, but if one team member lets go the whole pyramid collapses on the ground.  Dr. Kate says that the fat soluble vitamins team up with the mineralsgymnastic balancing act like calcium and magnesium. Working together the vitamins make sure the minerals go where they are needed instead of ending up in a place where they would do harm. She notes that 50% of all heart attack victims have cholesterol levels considered normal or desired. Instead of using cholesterol levels to predict heart disease Dr. Kate suggests testing for the presence of calcium in the coronary arteries, meaning the synergy with A, D, K2 and calcium has broken down.

You also need to know our bodies can’t store vitamin K2. We have to eat it every day or we won’t have enough of it and it won’t be in balance. Unfortunately most people don’t eat the right kind of food anymore to get K2. Industrial farming and CAFOs deplete K2. Trans fats block K2!  Animals produce K2 only as long as they are eating grass and other green foods rich in K1. Then we can get enough K2 by eating their milk, eggs and organ meats. Fermented foods help us produce K2.  Foods with higher levels of K2 include Natto, cheese, egg yolks, butter, chicken liver, salami, chicken breast and ground beef.

Finally, it’s not just the vitamins that work together; fat is also important.  Fat is what allows the fat-soluble vitamins to be absorbed and used. Vitamin E and fat increase our absorption of vitamin A.  According to Chris Masterjohn, the most effective type of fat in aiding the absorption of vitamins A, D, K2 and especially beta carotene, is saturated fat.  The least effective? Those industrially produced polyunsaturated oils such as canola and soy.

Just like the loving body of believers in Ephesians 4 who are “joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”  So do our own physical bodies work when we honor the foods created to work synergistically within us as each nutrient does its work to build us up.

This was posted as part of the Sunday Social Blog Hop.

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Wise Traditions 2013 Day Two

Wise Traditions 2013 Day Two  I’m just doing a synopsis of everything instead of in-depth on one thing today:

First talk was by Chris Masterjohn: Fat-soluble vitamins in the prevention of heart disease

He gave a lengthy description of the fat-soluble vitamins A, D & K and talked about how they are best absorbed from true fully-formed sources that are found only in animal foods including fatty fish, butter, eggs and the fat of animals living out of doors. K2 is also found in fermented foods.  Then he described how blood clots form and how arteries get clogged (It’s not what you think – best quote of the talk “Arteries are nothing like pipes!” Plaque occurs underneath the lining of the blood vessel and pushes the artery wall out and backward (not narrower) until it eventually ruptures. The rupture then fills with more plaque and only after successive ruptures does the artery become distorted and narrow. Most of the plaque is made from damaged polyunsaturated fats that were captured and capped off to prevent oxidative damage until the body could successfully eliminate them. Trouble is unhealthy people can’t eliminate damaged fats so they continue to pile up and pile up eventually rupturing the artery.

The fat-soluble vitamins protect by allowing special proteins to bind with calcium and direct it out of the blood and soft tissues and into the bones and teeth where it belongs. Vitamins A&D are both important. One without the other can become toxic, they work together. Vitamin K is supported by A&D. They all work to keep us healthy.

Second session was Kaayla Daniel, author of The Whole Soy Story, who has written a new book on bone broth which will be out next year. Kaayla gave a long history of gelatin and canned soups and eventually got down to explaining about the good things in broth which include the following: Gelatin, collagen, cartilage, marrow, proteoglycans (a new word for me that means essential sugars). Broth is useful in forming healthy bone matrix, keeping healthy joints, speeding wound healing, curing some forms of cancer, and curing infections.

Kate Rheaume bleue

Kate Rheaume-Bleue

Kate Rheaume-Bleue was the third presenter I heard today. She has a wonderful new book called Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox: How a Little Known Vitamin Could Save Your Life.  She explained the new research showing those who take calcium supplements are dying of calcified arteries, heart attack and stroke. “Research being done is raising questions that can’t be answered by the research being done.”  Turns out we are calcifying ourselves to death because we are deficient in the fat-soluble vitamin K2. This vitamin is essential – meaning we have to eat it because we cannot manufacture it. But industrial farming and CAFOs have depleted it from our food supply, we eat far less fermented foods than before, and trans fats block K2 activity making a ‘demented’ form of K2 we can’t use.  In factcrowded teeth are almost entirely caused by K2 deficiency during growth years. Women who eat more cheese while they are pregnant (cheese is a good source of K2) will have children with better teeth. K2 takes calcium and puts it where it belongs – in the bones, not in the soft tissues. K2 also counteracts the effects of menopause, heals varicose veins and works as an anti-wrinkle substance. Good food sources of K2 are natto, goose liver, gouda and brie cheese, egg yolk, butter, chicken liver, chicken meat, ground beef, bacon, calf liver, sauerkraut, raw milk, salmon, fish eggs, butter oil and ghee (all animal sources need to be grassfed for optimal K2).

Finally I heard a heartfelt presentation from Kim Schuette of Biodynamic Wellness on the Recovery from Bipolar Disorder, Epilepsy and Type 1 Diabetes. Kim explained how the Affordable Healthcare Act was depending on healthy young people to sign up in order to offset the expense of caring for the aging patients. However the government did not take into account the rocketing rise in the rate of mental health issues afflicting our younger population. 150,000 new cases of epilepsy are diagnosed daily, type 1 diabetes rates have risen 23% from 2001 to 2009.  Strong mental health begins with a strong and healthy gut flora population. But many things damage the gut including improperly prepared grains, pasteurized dairy, sugar, toxic metals and chemicals, antibiotics and chlorinated water. Damaged gut wall eventually results in leaky gut, immune system overload and eventually allergies. The only way to heal is to eliminate the offending items, nourish the body with real food, detox from the ordeal and repair the gut. Nourishing foods include fats as the foundation of all healthy hormones and cell membranes, minerals that act as catalysts to assist the body in utilizing the vitamins, detoxing our bodies and assisting the liver to clean it out, exercising to stimulate the lymph system and repairing with more healthy fats.  Early intervention is always best. The GAPS diet is helpful in doing all of these steps to recovery. Kim then went on to relate four different case studies from her own patients. One teenage girl had bipolar at age 9 and was considered a hopeless case by her doctor. She is now completely healed and living a normal life. Another young boy at age 2 had seizures and went blind and his parents were told to institutionalize him. He is now on the path to wellness, has regained his sight and is able to talk and interact with his family. One young lady was cured of her type 1 diabetes and is now completely off her insulin.

I love hearing the amazing stories of healing and hope given by the wonderful presenters. Tomorrow is the final day. More exciting information to come!