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Thread: Protecting Your DNA from Lethal Mutations

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Protecting Your DNA from Lethal Mutations

    LE Magazine September 2005

    Protecting Your DNA from Lethal Mutations
    By Dave Tuttle

    “Cancer results from the accumulation of mutations in genes that regulate cellular proliferation.”
    Source: Haber D. Roads leading to breast cancer. N Engl J Med. 2000 Nov 23;343(21):1566-8.

    Even doctors have a hard time understanding that most cancers are caused by mutations in genes that regulate cell division. Mutagens come from a variety of sources, including tobacco smoke and environmental pollutants. The number-one cancer-causing mutagen, however, is our diet.

    Fortunately, scientists have identified new methods to detoxify and minimize the impact of these mutagens on our genes.

    Every day, we are surrounded by environmental toxins ranging from automobile exhaust to poisons released during the dry cleaning of clothes and estrogen-like chemicals in the plastic wrap covering our food. These chemicals can have dangerous effects on the very makeup of our DNA.

    Barbequing food produces mutagenic heterocyclic amines. The frying, baking, and roasting of carbohydrate-rich foods such as potatoes create acrylamide, which is a known cancer-causing agent in animals. Just breathing the air exposes us to a constant barrage of chemical by-products from industrial processes.

    Because of these influences, it is critical to take preventive measures to boost your body’s defenses against the continuous assault of the mutagens that surround us.

    Detoxification Enzyme Systems

    The human body has several systems for detoxifying the wide array of synthetic chemicals known as xenobiotics—such as pesticides and other foreign compounds—that are found in our environment.1 These detoxifying systems are also able to eliminate the toxic end products of naturally occurring metabolic processes, as well as bacterial endotoxins produced within the body. The two main systems used by the body are known as Phase I and Phase II. This two-phase system is necessary because many xenobiotics are fat soluble, and must be converted to a water-soluble molecule that can then be excreted in the urine or bile.

    While these detoxification systems are quite complex, their general characteristics are fairly easy to understand.

    The molecules produced during Phase I may be more toxic than the original molecules. This is because the reactive groups that are added to the original molecules enable these intermediate molecules to function like free radicals in the liver, with all of their potential damage. Provided that the Phase II system is functioning well, the conversion process will occur quickly and without undue damage to the body. However, as with many bodily processes, the efficiency of these detoxification systems may be diminished as we age. In addition, genetics affects detoxification, with some people being “rapid” metabolizers and others “slow” metabolizers. This highlights the need to maximize the effectiveness of Phases I and II through nutritional supplementation, and reinforces the necessity of maintaining ample supplies of antioxidants and other liver-protective nutrients in the body.

    One of the reasons that agricultural chemicals are so harmful to humans is that they can wreak havoc on the body’s detoxification system. For example, the popular herbicide Roundup® contains gly-phosate, a compound that depresses the function of cytochrome P450 and two other enzymes that are vital for detoxification.2 Other chemicals used to raise food have similar impacts, and it is hard to avoid exposure to these common mutagens.

    While a variety of nutrients act as essential cofactors in detoxification, four have been found to directly enhance Phase I or Phase II: curcumin, chlorophyllin, wasabi, and broccoli extract.

    Curcumin Prevents Mutation Damage

    One of the most effective anti-mutagens is curcumin, a phytonutrient derived from the Indian spice turmeric, the main ingredient in curry. The general term curcumin actually refers to a group of polyphenolic plant pigments that are responsible for turmeric’s characteristic canary-yellow color and virtually all of its beneficial properties. A member of the ginger family, it has a reputation for quelling inflammation and healing various maladies ranging from ulcers to arthritis. Turmeric is a popular remedy for upset stomach throughout Asia, and has been shown to have numerous cardiovascular benefits, in part because it reduces total cholesterol levels and inhibits LDL (low-density lipoprotein) oxidation.

    In the last decade, scientists have discovered that curcumin can also help protect against the multitude of mutagens in our environment. Study after study has shown that these environmental toxins are often a direct link to cancer development in humans. For example, heterocyclic amines are potent mutagens generated during the cooking of meat and fish. Several of these compounds have produced tumors when given to experimental animals at dosages that humans could obtain from their diets.3 A study at India’s Panjab University explored the benefits of curcumin and two of its analogs, demethoxycurcumin and bis-demethoxycurcumin, in counteracting the effects of seven of these heterocyclic amines. The researchers found that curcumin inhibited mutagenicity by as much as 80% against all of the tested mutagens in cooked food. Several studies have found that curcumin supplementation can reduce the likelihood of colon cancer & other cancers as well.......

    Chlorophyllin Inhibits Mutagenicity

    Chlorophyll is the green pigment in plants that acts as a receptor in photosynthesis, the light-driven process by which carbon dioxide is converted to carbohydrates and water, enabling the plant to live. Chlorophyllin, a sodium/copper derivative of chlorophyll, has the benefit of being water soluble, allowing it to be transported easily in the blood. It also has anti-carcinogenic properties.

    Several studies have demonstrated chlorophyllin’s effectiveness. In an experiment with bacteria, the nutrient was added to petri dishes containing substances that normally produce mutations, such as fried beef, fried pork, cigarette smoke, coal dust, and diesel emission particles.17 Chlorophyllin inhibited mutagenicity by a minimum of 75% and by as much as 100%. The experiment also revealed that chlorophyllin is heat-stable. While the nutrient’s precise mechanism of action is unknown, the authors note that it is an antioxidant, and suggest that the scavenging of free radicals or its interaction with the active group of mutagenic compounds is responsible for its anti-mutagenic activity.........

    Wasabi Battles Carcinogens

    Wasabi japonica is a member of the Brassica, or cruciferous, family of vegetables, which includes cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, horseradish, and 10 other plants. These vegetables add crunch and flavor to meals, and have long been recognized as important parts of a healthy diet because of their fiber content. Recent research has revealed, however, that there is much more to these vegetables than mere fiber. They contain high levels of glucosinolates, a group of compounds that are converted to isothiocyanates by the enzyme myrosinase when the plant cells are damaged by harvesting, cutting, or chewing. It is the isothiocyanates that give these vegetables their sharp flavors. Wasabi, the green, pungent horseradish usually served with sushi, is one of the most potent sources of isothiocyanates among all plant species.

    The isothiocyanates do more than add flavor to a meal. A Japanese study found that allyl isothiocyanate has significant antioxidant actions, particularly against the superoxide radical.22 According to the authors, this phytochemical also has an inhibitory effect on the growth of food poisoning bacteria and fungi, and showed anti-mutagenic activity against a common carcinogen found in broiled fish and meat.

    Three other Japanese studies discovered dramatic benefits from 6-methylsulfinyhexyl isothiocyanate, or 6-MITC. Researchers at Japan’s Nagoya University found 6-MITC to be a potent inducer of glutathione S-transferase, one of the most important Phase II detoxification enzymes, due to its high reactivity. 6-MITC has the potential to control cancer cells of all types.......

    Broccoli Extract: Rich in Anti-Mutagens

    Broccoli is a plentiful source of glucosinolates, which are converted enzymatically into isothiocyanates. In the body, the isothiocyanates in broccoli boost production of several Phase II detoxification enzymes, enhance antioxidant status, and protect animals against chemically induced cancer.31 As a result, nutritionists recommend consuming broccoli and similar vegetables at least three times a week. Concentrated extracts of broccoli enable you to boost your intake of these beneficial compounds even more.

    One of the primary isothiocyanates in broccoli is sulforaphane. In numerous studies, this plant chemical has demonstrated anti-carcinogenic actions. In an in-vitro experiment with mouse liver cancer cells, sulforaphane raised levels of two Phase II detoxification enzymes, glutathione S-transferase and quinine reductase.32 The authors concluded that sulforaphane’s ability to elevate these enzymes may be a significant component of broccoli’s anti-cancer action.........

    Maximizing Protection Against Mutagens

    It has become increasingly difficult to protect our health from the encroachment of carcinogenic chemicals, including pesticides, that are part of the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the food we eat. Providing the body with defensive agents such as curcumin, chlorophyllin, wasabi, and broccoli extract can maximize protection against DNA damage, thus making an important contribution to optimal health and longevity.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005

    Another article for our reading pleasure

    Look like LifeRanger got the habit of "copy and cut " articles from somewhere else and "paste" it here! After his "coca cola" thread, here is another one from him. I am wondering, what do LifeRanger expect us to do with our daily life after reading this artice. Eat japanese food? Eat more tumeric? Eat more brocolli? Unfortunately, the article did not mention the benefit of drinking teh tarik! Can't wait for Orchi's comment on this.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    How not to get cancer

    Die early, then you will avoid most cancers, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases etc.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Err...for every internet surfer in the worldwideweb...who would write certain kinds of craps...there would be 10 more of his buddies out there...trying to look for opportunity...n further 100 more so called webmasters trying to find or make something out of the craps...that they themselves would NOT know what they are looking at to begin with... ya see a lot of the shiitty craps in all imaginable forms...floating around ...err...n somewhere down the line...bla bla bla...until 10,000,000 internet users in these parts of the world would be blasted till kingdom comes...n we are not spared either...

    Err...listen up...for every malaysian internet surfer out there...there are perhaps 10 more malaysians surfers that would find it hard to even get 3 meals into their own stomachs...let alone put 3 proper meals on the tables for their families...

    Ahem...what about folks on the streets...towns...villagers...or those remote areas...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    MPSJ tax payer
    talking about crap as highlighted by our senior forumer, i've totally agree that we need to stop posting this kind of crap on emails we receive many moons ago, only now received by some and immediately it is on this forum like it is the latest news, a new cola is found!!! and without checking the facts.And yes margerine is black, only when you add some shoe polish to it and stir it up Please spare us the bandwidth, talk kopitiam stuff is better than all this crap. We all better go bananas. Or shall we just go potatos.

    off to my tom yam soup for my 2nd meal. Spicy& delicious and no crap inside.Maybe there will be thread to say tom yam is bad.

    Wonder what the next thread will be...... Guess USA is the center of food and we should trust all that comes from there? Doing everything in moderate food wise and it should be fine, including starting threads I guess!!!!
    Eye of the Tiger!!!

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