The Nutrition Solution
Jan 2nd, 2014 by Aldouspi

The Nutrition Solution

The Nutrition Solution, Harold J Kristal, D.D.S. and James M. Haig, N.C., 2002: North Atlantic Books, Berkeley, CA, 285 pages

The Nutrition Solution is probably the most important book in the field of metabolic typing. There are other biochemical typing books, one of which is Eat Right for your (blood) Type. The reason why The Nutrition Solution is the best metabolic typing book is because it combines four different metabolic types and provides both a strong theoretical basis and substantial empirical evidence for the four types. Most of the audience reading this review may never have heard of metabolic typing. Therefore there needs to be some background information presented before continuing with the critique of The Nutrition Solution.

Kristal's book is influenced heavily by the other major work on metabolic typing ---The Metabolic Typing Diet. The author of this book, William Wolcott, originally believed that there were two metabolic types, the fast and slow oxidizers. He was in turn influenced in this opinion by George Watson, PhD, who wrote about the different rates of food oxidation in the book Nutrition and Your Mind: the Psychochemical Response. It was much later that Kristal found out about the theory of Wolcott, who suggested that there were four metabolic types, not two. In Wolcott's opinion, there were two main metabolizing systems, the oxidative and the autonomic. The oxidative system is the one that is described in all biochemistry books as the standard system of breaking down food for energy. It is well-defined and relatively uncontroversial. Oxygen combines with molecules made of carbon and hydrogen to release energy. A similar reaction occurs in a gasoline engine to release energy from the chemical octane.

Some people oxidize foods faster than normal, they are called fast oxidizers. Some oxidize foods at a slower rate and are termed slow oxidizers.

The autonomic system is responsible for the neural-based regulation of metabolism via hormones and neurotransmitters. Although the study of the autonomic system is also a "conventional" science, which has been taught in the Bio-Medical field for decades, it is newer, and thus is somewhat less defined than the oxidative system. The two branches of the autonomic system are the sympathetic and the parasympathetic. The sympathetic branch is most often stimulatory (ex. increasing heart rate), while the parasympathetic branch is mostly inhibitory (ex. decreasing heart rate). Both the oxidative and autonomic systems interact with each other, giving feedback to each other in order to keep the body's overall metabolism running smoothly. Every person has both the oxidative and autonomic systems, but they are not always in balance. Often one will dominate the other in certain instances, including digestion and assimilation of food. Francis Pottenger Sr. conducted many autonomic experiments on animals around the start of the 20th century, and concluded that individual mammals (including humans) most often have one of the autonomic branches dominating the other. For this theory he is generally recognized as the father of autonomic typing.

There is a second variable in the metabolic equation: blood pH. Normally, arterial blood pH ranges from 7.37 to 7.43, with an average of 7.40. The more acidic the blood is, the lower the pH; the more alkaline the blood is, the higher the pH. A completely neutral pH is 7.00, so all blood pH is slightly alkaline. However, if the blood pH falls below 7.40 it can be termed relatively acidic, even though technically it's still slightly alkaline. Most foods, such as grains and meats, release acids when they are digested. Many vegetables are an exception to this---they are more alkaline. However, what happens during digestion and what happens to the pH of the blood can be two very different things. For reasons still not completely understood, some foods raise blood pH in some people, and some foods lower blood pH in others. The same food may raise blood pH in one person and lower it in another.

This is important, for two reasons. First, blood pH needs to be kept in a narrow range in order for various enzymes and other constituents of the bloodstream to function optimally. If the blood pH goes too high or too low, there can be serious problems with a person's health, including seizures, coma, and even death. Second, a person's blood pH may be within the clinical range of 7.37 to 7.43, but they may be close to one of those extremes, and eating the "wrong" foods may push them further away from the optimal pH of 7.40. The good news is that once a person knows and understands their metabolic type, they can plan a nutrition program to help balance their blood pH towards the optimal level.

The two metabolic types with higher blood pH are the slow oxidizers and parasympathetics. The two metabolic types with lower blood pH are the fast oxidizers and the sympathetics. The slow oxidizers and sympathetics tend to do better on complex carbohydrates, while the fast oxidizers and parasympathetics often do better with more fat and protein in their diets. Why would this be? As far as oxidation is concerned, the answer is relatively straightforward. Carbohydrates are used as fuel first, followed by fat, and then protein. Therefore, carbohydrates are the fastest to be used. If someone has a faster metabolism, they will burn up carbohydrates faster than they should. Blood sugar, energy, and emotional swings may be the result, as well as a swing in blood pH (lower). Protein and fat burning happens more slowly, and thus slows down the metabolism of the fast oxidizers. Slow oxidizers burn carbohydrates at a more normal pace, but too much fat and protein in the diet will slow down their metabolism too much. They may feel bloated and nauseated after eating a meal rich in protein and fat. Their blood pH may also swing the wrong way as well (higher).

As for parasympathetics and sympathetics, the established scientific picture is not clear for why they also have blood pH changes that are the opposite of the oxidative types. Kristal admits in the book that he does not know why this is, but the empirical evidence is clear that this is the case. Parasympathetics tend to have faster metabolisms, like the fast oxidizers, and thus do better with more fat and protein in their diet. Their alkaline blood pH is lowered by protein intake towards 7.40. Sympathetics are like the slow oxidizers in that they have slower metabolisms. They do better on carbohydrates, which raises their relatively acidic blood pH towards the normal 7.40. Some people are internally balanced, with a blood pH at or very near 7.40, and their pH may not be affected much, if at all, by eating different foods. Kristal's colleague Wolcott terms these people mixed types. Kristal's method of changing blood pH is a glucose-potassium challenge to patients (according to him, potassium stimulates the autonomics).

In reality, most people are never tested for arterial blood pH, since it is not a routine test, and has the potential to cause infection. The blood is taken deep inside the body from an artery, not from a vein close to the outer skin as with most blood tests. Much of the work that was done on blood pH and food happened several decades ago, and the results are used as a model to theoretically predict what metabolic type one is. In other words, a metabolic typist can take the symptoms the client has and works backward to determine what their physical state in theory should be internally. A health-care provider can also take the venous blood and determine its pH. The pH of venous blood is slightly lower than arterial blood, between 7.32 and 7.38---so the optimal venous blood pH would be 7.35 instead of 7.40. When performed carefully, venous blood pH is normally as accurate as arterial blood pH.

One thing that's questionable in the book is when Kristal repeatedly states the optimal venous blood pH as 7.46. He certainly knows that 7.46 is a high value, whether it's via conventional medical definition or the holistic opinion. A blood pH of 7.46 is high even for arterial blood, but it is especially high, possibly even dangerously high for venous blood. What he may be actually saying is that the optimal blood pH is 7.46 at room temperature (25oC, or 77oF), when the blood samples are taken from a warm body and then tested in the laboratory. pH only changes +/- 0.0144 for every degree of centigrade (C) change, but remember that even such a small change can have large consequences. The human body is normally at 37oC (99oF), which is 12oC more than room temperature. pH falls with a rise in temperature, and vice-versa. So, 12 x 0.0144 = 0.173 rise in pH units, since the temperature has fallen. As noted previously, the average venous blood pH is 7.35, so 7.35 + 0.173 = pH of 7.52 at room temperature. It may have been that Kristal's samples were tested somewhere between room temperature and body temperature, say 30oC (86oF). This would correspond to an average venous blood pH of 7.45 (7.35 + 0.101), which correlates fairly well to his "optimal" pH of 7.46. Whatever the case, he should have mentioned in the book what temperature the participants' blood samples were tested at. A pH of 7.46 is not healthy at body temperature; it is very important that readers know and understand this.

There are many case histories, as is usual for a health-related book that describes more alternative methods of treatment. The self-typing questionnaire consists of 30 questions. The different diets for the carbohydrate (group I) and protein/fat (group II) metabolisms are very detailed. However, there are not really any references for why most foods belong in which group. Obviously, carbohydrates belong in group I and most proteins/fats belong in group II, but there are many fruits and vegetables that are placed in either group. Even more complicated is that some foods from the same family of vegetables (for example, broccoli and cauliflower) are recommended for different groups, although the foods themselves are highly related to each other. It would have been good for Kristal to reference all of this information, even if it took a second book to accomplish this. The reviewer does admit that he developed an aversion to broccoli with no aversion to cauliflower before reading that cauliflower is acceptable for his group II diet (broccoli is not). This is what is called anecdotal information (without statistical evidence), and anecdotal information is what holistic concepts rely heavily on, for better or worse.

The diet menus, as are very common in books like this, are pretty good, because they are all shown on two pages. This makes it easy for the reader to mix and match different foods on the menu without having to flip through dozens of pages to find a good meal combination for themselves. Not everyone is going to like every food combination, and Kristal does a decent job of not patronizing the reader by going into detail in cooking/ingredients for every meal. He gives a satisfactory overview of nutritional theories for juices, food combinations, soups, etc. Kristal recommends over 25% protein for the group II (protein/fat) types, which may be hard on the kidneys of certain people. If you do follow his advice, be sure to drink plenty of quality (spring) water, and notify your physician about the amount of protein you intend to eat. Kristal also briefly explains the reactions to different foods based on an individual's blood type. This is probably as much information on blood type that anyone needs.

As mentioned earlier, there is a third group (III) that is balanced between the carbohydrate (group I) and protein/fat (group II). Many researchers believe that a food-balanced group of people is the healthiest; however that may depend directly on the blood pH, which in theory should be balanced as well. In reality, there are many variables that cannot be accounted for in classifying some people as "balanced". The group III people may be equally imbalanced towards carbohydrates and protein/fat, and yet come out balanced on the self-test. Also, some group III people may be truly balanced between carbohydrates and protein/fat, but still may not have a balanced blood pH. If a group I type eats carbohydrates, in theory their blood pH should be more balanced, and the same goes for group II types eating more protein and fat. However, this does not mean that a group III individual would need exactly 50% carbohydrates and 50% protein/fat to stay balanced. Everyone is different metabolically, and testing on paper into a group does not reflect their blood pH, and balancing blood pH itself may not necessarily help every problem they have.

An important part of the book involves what types should take what kinds, amounts, and ratios of supplements. Group I types do better on magnesium and straight vitamin C (ascorbic acid); group II types do better on calcium and calcium ascorbate (buffered vitamin C). There is a good section on hormones, which is simple enough to be understood by most laypersons. Interestingly, Kristal does not recommend supplements unless he feels that an individual really needs them. In other words, he attempts to let the proper diet for a metabolic type do most of the work in regaining health. One of the more interesting parts of the book is when Kristal theorizes that the group I types tend to develop cardiovascular disease when too many simple carbohydrates are ingested, while group II types tend to develop diabetes. He has some compelling statistics from patients to back up this theory. Also, group I types are much more prone to cancer for some reason. Could it be that they are eating too much protein and fat for their type? This may be so, but more research is needed. Finally, the reference section is adequate, but it does not contain many reputable articles from scientific journals or textbooks to help legitimize the concept of metabolic typing.

How does this book rate? The Nutrition Solution is very important to the field of nutrition, the bio-medical field, and the general public. This is due to the importance of explaining how metabolism is varied between individuals, and the simplification scheme to type someone metabolically. It cannot be stressed how important this concept is. However, from a strict scientific point of view, it's still a concept, at the hypothesis stage. There are several observations in metabolic typing that still cannot be explained at the scientific level. Perhaps the most important of these lingering questions is why the same food would cause opposite blood pH reactions in two different people (two different metabolic types). Until there is a solid understanding of the mechanism for this and other metabolic typing issues, there will not be any widespread acceptance of this emerging field in the Bio-Medical community. Metabolic typing is a work in progress, but this fact should not take anything away from the importance of reading The Nutrition Solution.

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Health & Nutrition
Apr 1st, 2011 by Aldouspi

Health & Nutrition

 

What are nutrients?

Every molecule in the body is created by Nutrients & there are more than 45 nutrients. These nutrients build molecules, cells, and tissues of the body.

We get energy from Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats that we eat. These are called macronutrients. These macro nutrients are broken down / metabolized to give energy to the body. Vitamins and minerals (called micronutrients) are not themselves metabolized for energy, but they are important in helping the macronutrients convert to energy.

 

What is a healthy diet?

The optimal diet has to be individualized to meet your unique needs. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) food pyramid suggests that we use fat "sparingly," and that our daily diet include 2 - 3 servings of dairy products; 2 - 3 servings of meat, poultry, fish, eggs, beans, or nuts; 3 - 5 servings of vegetables; 2 - 4 servings of fruit; and 6 - 11 servings of bread, cereal, rice, or pasta.

 

These are general guidelines. Healthy diet is dependent upon many factors like: age, gender, body size, pregnancy, and status of health. A clinical nutritionist or nutritionally oriented doctor can help you determine what type of diet is best for you.

 

While you know it is important to eat a healthy diet, it isn't always easy to sort through all of the information available about nutrition and food choices.  Nutrition has a vital importance to human well-being.  Nutrition should play a leading role to improve our quality of life. Nutrition is a key for reducing your body fat percentage. 

 

Better nutrition means stronger immune systems, less illness and better health.  Better nutrition is a prime entry point to ending poverty and a milestone to achieving better quality of life.  Safe food and good nutrition are important to all.  Basic nutrition knowledge is constantly taking shape every day, producing new diet trends to an ever growing audience of people who want to know the latest and greatest ways to achieve their physical fitness goals. 

 

Get nutrition facts and discover how you can use dietary recommendations to improve your health.  As you grow older, getting a nutritionally rich diet becomes even more important.  The link between nutrition and health is necessary to achieve optimal health.  Good nutrition is a clear path to optimize our quality of life. An important starting point for achieving optimum health is to achieve optimum nutrition and get the proper nutrients from the food.  Diet and nutrition are the principle preventive measures against diseases. 

 

Reading labels and eating a diet rich in vitamins and nutrients is optimal for healthy nutrition.  Research confirms that good nutrition in the early years of life is crucial for human growth and mental development. The study of human nutrition dates back to the 18th century, when the French chemist Lavoisier discovered that there was a relationship between our metabolism of food and the process of breathing.

 

The field of clinical nutrition has evolved into a practice that is increasingly incorporated into mainstream medical treatment. The term "nutritional supplement" refers to vitamins, minerals, and other food components that are used to support good health and treat illness. 

 

A clinical nutritionist or nutritionally oriented doctor can help you determine what type of diet is best for you. During the initial part of the visit, the clinical nutritionist will ask you questions about your medical history, family history, and personal lifestyle.  In hospitals, nutrition is used to improve the overall health of patients with a wide range of conditions.  Effects of exercise and nutrition on postural balance and risk of falling in elderly people with decreased bone mineral density: randomized controlled trial pilot study. 

 

Proper nutrition is a powerful good: people who are well nourished are more likely to be healthy, productive and able to learn.  Good nutrition benefits families, their communities and the world as a whole. Malnutrition is, by the same logic, devastating.

 

Healthy Lifestyle

 

Healthy people are stronger, are more productive and more able to create opportunities to gradually break the cycles of both poverty and hunger in a sustainable way.  Healthy eating is associated with reduced risk for many diseases, including the three leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, and stroke.  Healthy eating is fundamental to good health and is a key element in healthy human development, from the prenatal and early childhood years to later life stages. 

 

Healthy eating is equally important in reducing the risk of many chronic diseases.  We spend a lot of money on food, but there are ways to cut costs and still serve healthy delicious meals.  When you choose healthy foods instead of sugary or high-fat foods you can actually improve your health by adding extra phytochemicals and fiber.  Breakfast foods should be healthy but they have a tendency to be high in fats and sugar. 

 

We always hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so why ruin a healthy breakfast.  Good nutrition is vital to good health, disease prevention, and essential for healthy growth and development of children and adolescents.  Fiber is an important part of a healthy diet. 

 

Many of us work very hard to eat healthy meals, but struggle with the urge for candy, cookies, cakes, ice cream and anything else full of sugar and sweetness.  Most experts agree that snacking is a part of a balanced and healthy diet, as long as the snacks don't pile on empty calories. 

 

When your best efforts go awry, and you order pizza or serve another meal that doesn't exactly fit into a healthy diet, you still have many options for making it healthier.  Just about everyone knows that fruits and vegetables are a very important part of a healthy diet.  Having a well-stocked pantry and refrigerator can be a busy cook's best weapon in the war against resorting to fast-food, high-fat, unhealthy meals.  Fresh oil is a source of essential fatty acids, which help keep the skin healthy and the hair shiny. 

 

We believe eating sensibly, combined with appropriate exercise, is the best solution for a healthy lifestyle.

 

Foods

 

When you choose healthy foods instead of sugary or high-fat foods you can actually improve your health by adding extra phytochemicals and fiber. The goal is to balance negative foods with positive foods so that the combined rating for all foods eaten in a single day is positive. 

 

If you want to restrict your caloric intake without feeling hungry, find foods highest in any vitamin or mineral or lowest in carbs, saturated fats, or sugars.  Our general state of health is partially driven by the types of foods we consume. To make vegetable oils suitable for deep frying, the oils are hydrogenated, so trans fats are commonly found in deep-fried foods such as French fries and doughnuts. Trans fats, beyond a limit, are not good for our health. 

 

Hydrogenation solidifies liquid oils and increases the shelf life and the flavor stability of oils and foods that contain them.  Other sources of trans fats are vegetable shortenings, some margarines, crackers, cookies, snack foods, and other foods.  Since trans fats increase a products shelf life, many pre-prepared foods and mixes (for example, some pancake mixes and pizza dough) contain trans fats. 

 

The solution: Whenever possible, eat whole, fresh, and unprocessed foods.  When buying packaged foods, put in at least as much time into reading labels and selecting products as you do when choosing a shower gel or shampoo.  A good diet is central to overall good health, but which are the best foods to include in your meals, and which ones are best avoided. 

 

Fast food has become much more popular of late and all over the world the out cry regarding harms of fast foods is on increase. 

 

Be aware that there is little scientific information about the effect of so-called functional foods --foods to which vitamins, minerals, herbs, or other dietary substances are added -- despite their growing popularity in the market place and claims of beneficial effects. 

 

Some common foods, including nuts, wheat gluten, dairy products, fish, shrimp, soy, bananas and eggs may trigger allergic reactions.

 

Fat

 

Fats add taste to meals and give one a feeling of fullness when eaten.  When you choose healthy foods instead of sugary or high-fat foods you can actually improve your health by adding extra phytochemicals and fiber.  Breakfast foods should be healthy but they have a tendency to be high in fats and sugar.  The human brain is almost entirely composed of unsaturated fatty acids. 

 

You deprive yourself of more than fats when you go for the fat-free or low-fat salad dressing.  We need fats to absorb all the beneficial elements of salads and other fruits and vegetables.  Learn which are the right types of fats, to create beautiful, supple skin, and a healthy body. 

 

Eating more whole foods is a good way to replace many of the processed snacks and foods that have a lot of extra sugar, fat (including trans fat), salt, and other things added to them and a lot of good things taken out, like fiber.  In addition to food labeled fat-free and low fat, healthy low fat foods include most fruits and vegetables. 

 

Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats (called macronutrients) are broken down (metabolized) to give the body energy.  For example, lowering fat and cholesterol intake and adding whole grains to the diet can prevent atherosclerosis (plaque build up in the arteries), which can lead to heart disease or stroke. 

 

Fish is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential components of cells and can protect the heart from, for example, fatal arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythm).  Omega-3 fatty acids found in cold water fish (such as herring, tuna, and salmon) have been reported to reduce inflammation and help prevent certain chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. 

 

 

Safe food and good nutrition are important to all. Basic nutrition knowledge is constantly taking shape every day, producing new diet trends to an ever growing audience of people who want to know the latest and greatest ways to achieve their physical fitness goals. 

 

Did you know that you can drastically decrease your chance of heart disease and cancer by eating a healthy diet and following the recommended nutrition guidelines? 

 

 

Proper nutrition is a powerful good: people who are well nourished are more likely to be healthy, productive and able to learn.  Good nutrition benefits families, their communities and the world as a whole.  Malnutrition is, by the same logic, devastating.

 

 

By: Pradeep Mahajan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author is a free-lance writer. He is an engineer-MBA and management consultant by profession & practice. Also visit www.health-fitness-wellness.com for more useful & interesting information on health, fitness & wellness.
This article is available for reprint on your website and/or in your newsletter, provided it is not changed and you include the author's web-site address.

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