Tag Archives: Polyphenol Nutrients by Pure Encapsulations

Fiber Consumption, The Gut and Your Good Health

FiberConsumptionJacquie Eubanks RN BSN

The gut microbiome is a complex and diverse ecology comprising trillions of microbiota that thrive inside the digestive tract. Per the British Medical Journal (BMJ), these gut microbes possess immune, metabolic and neurobehavioral traits key to many aspects of human health and disease, including body weight, as well as neurotransmitter, vitamin and energy production. When in proper balance, these microbial communities protect against the development of systemic inflammation, leaky gut and other disorders that can lead to chronic health conditions. It now appears that a diversity of microorganisms and an overall balanced microbiome is a good indicator that a healthy gut contributes to the state of our health.

The microbiome can become imbalanced when influenced by factors such as a low-fiber diet, environmental toxins, medications or chronic stress. When this occurs, harmful microorganisms can flourish within the digestive tract, crowding out beneficial microbes and gaining an unhealthy dominance. Known as dysbiosis, this imbalance may promote diet induced obesity and metabolic complications in a variety of ways. Dysbiosis can alter immune, gut hormone and energy regulation and promote pro-inflammatory mechanisms that can result in a compromised gut barrier and autoimmune diseases. Lower bacterial diversity has been linked to inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, arterial stiffness and diabetes type 1 and type 2.

Proper amounts of daily fiber intake can help improve microbial composition by specifically enriching beneficial microbes that feed and thrive on dietary fibers. Increasing fiber intake through diet or supplements can help to lower blood pressure, blood sugar and serum cholesterol levels and improve insulin sensitivity in both diabetic and non-diabetic individuals. The development and progression of obesity is associated with dysbiosis and a less diverse microbiome. Evidence links long term weight gain with low microbiota diversity, exacerbated by low dietary fiber intake.

Dietary fiber is a complex carbohydrate that is resistant to digestive enzymes and is neither broken down nor absorbed in the small intestine. Although dietary fiber provides many recognized health benefits, the average daily fiber intake for American children and adults falls well below the recommended levels of 25–38 grams per day. A lack of knowledge as to the importance of fiber, the low-fiber western diet and the growing popularity of gluten-free, wheat-free and grain-free diets all contribute to insufficient daily fiber intake. Per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), individuals with higher intakes of dietary fiber appear to be at a significantly lower risk for developing coronary heart disease, stroke, hypertension, diabetes and obesity, as well as certain gastrointestinal diseases and some cancers.

Dietary fibers promote colon health, increase satiety, decrease food cravings, contribute to healthy weight maintenance and support regularity. By providing bulk, viscosity and improved gastrointestinal health through microbiota composition, dietary fibers are beneficial for bowel function and intestinal transit, colonic fermentation and short chain fatty acid production. Evidence shows that short chain fatty acids feed and support the health of colon cells and have beneficial effects on cell turnover, metabolism and eating behavior, functions that depend upon the food we ingest. When gut microbes are deprived of fermentable fiber, the mucous layer or gut lining that keeps the gut wall intact and free from infection is dramatically diminished.

Studies show that the gut is heavily influenced by both chronically low and high-fiber diets. To improve gut health, eliminate low fiber processed white foods, sugar laden foods and artificial sugars that feed harmful bacteria. Opt for a wide array of high fiber fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, whole grains and fermented foods that help develop a healthier and more diverse microbiome. Prebiotics, probiotics and polyphenols all promote the development of beneficial microbes, positively affecting the intestinal barrier wall as well.

  • Prebiotics, sometimes called “microbiota accessible carbohydrates,” are indigestible food components that specifically or selectively nourish beneficial colonic microorganisms.
  • Probiotics, when administered in adequate amounts in viable or live form, can beneficially affect the microbiome, as well as support immune modulation and the production of bioactive compounds. Probiotics derived from populations of known beneficial microorganisms fight dysbiosis by suppressing less beneficial microbes and helping to restore a more balanced microbiome, enhancing health and the prospects for longevity.
  • Found in a variety of fruits and vegetables, as well as tea, coffee, chocolate and wine, polyphenols are complex compounds with health promoting activities, that can include anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antiadipogenic, antidiabetic and neuroprotective capabilities. Dietary polyphenols and their metabolites may contribute to the maintenance of gut health through the modulation microbial balance, stimulating the growth of beneficial bacteria and inhibiting pathogenic bacteria.

Professional Supplement Center offers these and other high quality supplements in support of overall health:

BioMaintenance...BioMaintenance™ Prebiotic + Fiber by Metabolic Maintenance®: The synergistic effects of prebiotics and fiber promote beneficial microbes that nourish gut cellular health and support, regularity, nutritional absorption and healthy body composition. No additional ingredients. Shelf stable, gluten free powdered formulation.

Polyphenol NutrientsPolyphenol Nutrients by Pure Encapsulations®: This broad spectrum hypoallergenic formula provides fully chelated minerals, activated vitamins, polyphenols and other nutrients in support of cellular, macular and overall health. Gluten free, Non-GMO formulation.

Broad Spectrum...Broad Spectrum Probiotic & Prebiotic by Prescript-Assist®: This advanced, multi-strain proprietary formula provides 28 strains of soil based organisms in support of gastrointestinal health, immune health and replenishment of beneficial microflora following antibiotic use. Shelf stable, no refrigeration required. Free of lactose, casein, gluten, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, soybeans, corn, sugar, yeast, preservatives, animal derivatives and artificial flavors and colors.

Frontier FiberFrontier Fiber by Nutritional Frontiers: This excellent source of all natural, digestion-resistant  soluble fiber supports healthy intestinal microflora, proper bowel function and regularity. Fully dissolvable in hot or cold liquids or may be added to soft food of choice. Free of citrus, eggs, gluten, milk, sodium, soy, wheat, yeast, added sugars, starches, synthetic dyes, artificial flavorings and preservatives. Non-gritty, flavorless vegetarian formulation.

Multi Probiotic KidsMulti-Probiotic Kids by Douglas Laboratories®: This non-gas forming proprietary formula provides a blend of seven child-friendly microflora strains plus prebiotic fiber. These strains promote healthy microflora in developing intestines to help maintain a healthy immune response and normal digestion and elimination. Free of yeast, wheat, gluten, soy, dairy, corn, sodium, sugar, starch and artificial coloring, preservatives and flavoring. Non-GMO formulation.

Green Tea ExtractGreen Tea Extract by Klaire Labs™: This formula provides green tea (camelia sinensis leaf) extract standardized to contain 95% polyphenols in support of gastrointestinal and overall health. Free of milk, casein, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, gluten, soybeans, corn, yeast and artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.

Advanced...Advanced MultiProBiotics Restore™ by Time4Health: This high potency, professionally designed, cold processed formula blends 18 strains of probiotics with a prebiotic in support of immune balance, regularity and gastrointestinal health and restoration. Acid resistant vegetable capsule helps ensure colonization in the intestinal tract. One capsule provides 12 billion CFU of proprietary probiotics. Free of wheat, gluten, salt, starch, soy and artificial colors, sweeteners and preservatives.

Closing America’s Fiber Intake Gap. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6124841/
Health benefits of dietary fiber. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19335713
Fiber-Famished Gut Microbes Linked to Poor Health. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/fiber-famished-gut-microbes-linked-to-poor-health1/
Gut Microbiome: How the Gut Impacts Overall Health. https://hvmn.com/blog/nutrition/gut-microbiome-how-the-gut-impacts-overall-health
Fiber. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/carbohydrates/fiber/
What is Dietary Fiber? https://www.fiberfacts.org/what-is-dietary-fiber/
Polyphenols and health: Interactions between fibre, plant polyphenols and the gut microbiota. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5698720/
Benefits of polyphenols on gut microbiota and implications in human health. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0955286313000946

How Cooking Affects Nutritional Content

cookingBy Jacquie Eubanks BSN, RN

To improve health and vitality and to fend off disease, we’re simply told to include a variety of fruits and vegetables in our daily diets.  Growing, harvesting, shipping, and storing all affect nutritional content and nearly all food preparation processes reduce the amount of nutrients in foods.  As nothing about nutrition is really simple, it holds true that processing and cooking methods affect various foods differently.  Food exposed to high heat, light and oxygen experience the highest nutrient loss.  While cooking can degrade some nutrients, it can also enhance the bioavailability of other nutrients. 

When it comes to cooking vegetables, there are always tradeoffs and there are numerous factors that determine how much the cooking of foods decreases the nutritional value.  For example, raw carrots contain polyphenols that are destroyed by cooking.  At the same time, boiled carrots have significantly higher levels of carotenoids.  Fresh tomatoes have lower lycopene content than cooked tomatoes.  For many plant foods, cooking breaks down thick, hard to digest cell walls creating more absorbable nutrients. Cooking also destroys potentially harmful microorganisms that may be present in our food supply.

Water soluble vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin B complex, and polyphenols are the most likely to degrade during cooking, while fat soluble compounds such as vitamins A, D, E, and K, and some antioxidants are more likely to be retained.  The shortest cooking methods as well as cooking methods that use little or no water, appear to be the best at retaining maximum nutrition levels.  These three factors help determine how much nutritional value is maintained or lost through cooking:

Amount of water:  Unless you are making soup or stew or otherwise intend to consume cooking water, it’s best not to boil vegetables.  During boiling, much of the water soluble vitamins will leach out into the water.  If you throw that water down the drain, you’re throwing away your vitamins and minerals too.  Using the water to cook rice or couscous for example recaptures many of those lost nutrients. 

The heat factor:  To retain as many nutrients as possible, limit the amount of time food is exposed to heat.  Fried food has the highest nutrient loss.  Roasting or grilling are better methods for retaining nutrients of some vegetables such as asparagus, broccoli and peppers. 

Timing is everything:  The longer the cooking time, the more damaging the nutrient loss.  There are no valid reasons to expose food to high heat for extended periods of time.  Cooking a vegetable for a short time, even for a minute or two, can enhance its digestibility. 

The best cooking methods for minimizing nutrient loss: 

  • Pressure cooking creates steam using a very small amount of water, seals the nutrients inside the cooker, and quickly cooks the vegetables while retaining both color and nutrients. 
  • Steaming is a very effective way to cook vegetables and retain nutrients.  Bringing a small amount of water to a boil before adding vegetables to the steamer is best.  Tossing steamed veggies in a small amount of healthy oil helps to boost nutrient absorption. 
  • Microwaving requires very little water and is the most rapid method of cooking so there is very little nutritional loss.  Microwaving also preserves the maximum amount of antioxidants. 
  • Sautéing vegetables over high heat in a little bit of oil for a short time also minimizes nutrient loss and helps the body utilize fat soluble nutrients. 

The best vegetables are the ones you will eat and enjoy.  To get the most benefit from your vegetables and the widest range of nutrients, enjoy them in a variety of ways.  Buy fresh, in season vegetables and eat them as soon as possible to get the most health benefits.    

Greens Powder by Quantum Nutrition Labs –  Live-sourced super nutrition formula for optimal health.  Contains power grass, barley grass, wheat grass, chlorella and blue green algae. 

Buffered C Powder (C155) by Thorne Research –  This pure crystalline vitamin C with a blend of calcium, magnesium and potassium mineral ascorbates is ideal for individuals with sensitive or compromised digestive systems.

Polyphenol Nutrients by Pure Encapsulations –  A nutrient dense multivitamin with fully chelated minerals for optimal absorption.